MoAD is San Francisco's newest museum. The Museum of the African Diaspora is the latest addition to the SOMA neighborhood's expanding cultural riches, and promises to be fascinating (and, as far as I can tell, unique in the world). [more inside] posted by trip and a half at 9:08 PM PST - 14 comments
Gould's Book of Fish (full contents of Chapter One) by Tasmanian author/historian/Rhodes Scholar Richard Flanagan is a critically lauded 2002 novel that is the most interesting and accomplished work of fiction I've read in years. Set in the 19th century on a penal colony off the coast of Tasmania, the book is narrated by William Buelow Gould, a convict, charlatan, and possible madman.
Here is an audio interview with Flanagan; here's an audio clip of the author reading from his book. (.ra files)
Yes, the book is a few years old, but it somehow passed under my radar; and, anyway, a good book is timeless.
(Picking up the piscine gauntlet thrown down by Plutor.) posted by Dr. Wu at 2:47 PM PST - 15 comments
The ongoing patent dispute between the patent firm NTP and BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion (RIM) reached a new low today when a U.S. appellate court judge named James Spencer ruled that an earlier settlement of $450M payable to NTP was not valid as it was not finalized properly. Even though the USPO has re-opened the NTP patents and has subsequently rejected most of the patents used in the patent infringement case, RIM was seeking to uphold the earlier settlement in order to avert the possibility of all sales and services from being halted in the United States. posted by purephase at 12:37 PM PST - 13 comments
39¢ Heroes. On January 8, the price of a First Class US Postage Stamp will creep up another two cents. But fear not, True Believers, because 20 of those new stamps will feature costumed crusaders from DC Comics "including Superman, Wonder Woman, Plastic Man, Batman, Green Arrow and many more." (Newsarama has more on the story, including the featured cover images for each hero.) posted by grabbingsand at 12:10 PM PST - 33 comments
Free Speech TV! Veoh allows anyone to create and broadcast their own TV show or a Channel full of shows. Not small streaming videos, but FULL-Screen, TV-Quality video. Veoh does not transcode the content, but rather offers it in it’s native encoding, and does not limit the file sizes/length of video. Veoh’s goal is to become the platform for producers of all sizes (from individuals to studios and everyone in between) to have a democratized TV broadcasting system. Take the tour. (audio/flash) posted by HyperBlue at 10:42 AM PST - 14 comments
The orchid scrapbooks of John Day. Over the course of 40 years, John Day participated in the popular Victorian pursuit of orchid collection. He collected his stunning paintings of the plants into 53 scrapbooks, a selection of which is available online at the Kew Royal Botanical Gardens. [via the remarkable BibliOdyssey] posted by frykitty at 9:44 AM PST - 7 comments
US-Made Suicide Bombs - These are by US military, law enforcement agencies or commercial security firms - whether for training or marketing or spooking the public posted by growabrain at 9:08 AM PST - 20 comments
Every year, the NME posts it's chart of the albums of the year poll - this year however they've decided to rig the results purely for commercial purposes. (List inside) posted by gi_wrighty at 8:43 AM PST - 72 comments
Serious vegetarians know to keep on the lookout for isinglass and other animal products in their beer. Isinglass is a fish-derived additive that's primarily used to help speed up the clarification of cask-conditioned ales, although some beer-makers will use it to reclaim batches that didn't filter properly. You can help keep your diet swimbladder-free with this awesome list. posted by Plutor at 5:01 AM PST - 86 comments
John "Paia" Simonton died late last week. His company, PAiA is one of the grandfathers of the DIY synth scene. I have one of his modular synths half-constructed in my garage. He helped create an American buzz for electronic music and DIY music gear in the 70s, and was highly influential till his passing away. posted by blackvectrex at 9:16 PM PST - 10 comments
Tomorrow, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Ayotte v. Planned Parenthood. At its core, the case is about the constitutionality of New Hampshire's abortion notification law. In reality, the two questions before the Court are a bit more complex. This may be one of the most significant abortion-related cases in years, and a ruling in favor of New Hampshire may put a serious dent in in the pro-choice movement. As a result, the Court has taken the rare step of allowing C-Span to air audio of the arguments soon after they conclude. (more inside) posted by schoolgirl report at 8:58 PM PST - 27 comments
For misleading the American people, and launching the most foolish war since Emperor Augustus in 9 B.C sent his legions into Germany and lost them, Bush deserves to be impeached and, once he has been removed from office, put on trial along with the rest of the president's men. If convicted, they'll have plenty of time to mull over their sins.
Throw Away The Key dot org seeks to lengthen the sentences of criminals on the premise of their mission statement: "Incarceration Works!" From their site: "If you believe a girl should be able to walk down the street in broad daylight without being abducted and murdered by a convicted felon, then it is time for you to get involved." posted by fandango_matt at 5:08 PM PST - 28 comments
Slow Mosaic is a mosaic generator powered by the Web. Feed it a word and watch it create related mosaics in front of your very eyes. Requires Flash. [MI] posted by sjvilla79 at 4:45 PM PST - 20 comments
Exercise your music muscle Someone marked a Day in Green ink. Then I eyed a Queen holding Sex Pistols. There are 71 other bands hidden in this street scene: you can download a higher-res version at Virgin's Web site. (Via Bifurcated Rivets). By the way, this is a contest (you can win a new computer and a year's worth of free music), but the site's interface is obnoxious and ad-strewn, so I moved the contest linkage down here. posted by Lord Kinbote at 3:01 PM PST - 62 comments
“Time is on the side of open disclosure that there are ethical Extraterrestrial civilizations visiting Earth. Our Canadian government needs to openly address these important issues of the possible deployment of weapons in outer war plans against ethical ET societies.” via posted by airguitar at 10:27 AM PST - 15 comments
The Problem With Emily Dickenson "On August 25, six students, along with their school, Calvary Chapel Christian School in Murrieta, California and the Association of Christian Schools International filed a federal lawsuit against the University of California where, according to the LA Times (August 27), admissions officials have been accused of discriminating against high schools that teach creationism and other conservative Christian viewpoints." One of the textbooks used to teach literature has this to say about Mark Twain: "Twain's outlook was both self-centered and ultimately hopeless. Denying that he was created in the image of God, Twain was able to rid himself of feeling any responsibility to his Creator. " posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 8:43 AM PST - 90 comments
Rabbit's animated journey through the history of (mostly American) cinema is a wonderful cartoon and, unfortunately, an ad for Motorola. Link goes to embedded quicktime, very slow loading. posted by jonson at 8:25 AM PST - 7 comments
Looks like a raccoon, acts like a raccoon, tastes like a dog? Technically a member of the canid family and considered to be a species of dog, the raccoon dog, or tanuki, is hunted in Japan to the tune of 70,000 animals killed annually for use in the production of calligraphic brushes, stuffed animals, and, apparently, ramen flavoring. The really interesting thing about the tanuki is its place in Japanese myth. The mythical tanuki are full of mischief, masters of shapeshifting, and possessors of unusually large testicles. Comic depictions of tanuki often show them with their testicles thrown over their backs or using them as drums. Does the existence of the tanuki shed any light on an often posted (and otherwise inexplicable) photo? posted by gokart4xmas at 7:25 AM PST - 33 comments
Q-Unit: Greatest Hits is an outstanding collection of mashups of 50 Cent and Queen. The mocked-up album covers alone are worth it, but I think I've listened to "Crazy Little P.I.M.P. Called Love" about three times already this morning. (Mirror here if main site craps out) posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:15 AM PST - 21 comments
Ritual Adornment of a communal habitat. Light and sound combine to impress other nearby members of the species. The counterpoint to a summer of tending carefully controlled foliage. posted by somnambulist at 9:52 PM PST - 11 comments
"'We want that shock. We want that awe. But at the same time, we don't want people to feel their rights are being threatened. We need them to be our eyes and ears'.... [Police] officers might, for example, surround a bank building, check the IDs of everyone going in and out and hand out leaflets about terror threats." While there have been no specific threats of terrorism against Miami, "'[t]his is an in-your-face type of strategy. It's letting the terrorists know we are out there,' [Deputy Police Chief Frank] Fernandez said." posted by orthogonality at 5:25 PM PST - 71 comments
David Brin -- hoping to rescue modernity Quote:
"... I have spoken before of the blatant -- and yet never-reported -- pattern shown by more than a hundred members of the United States Congress, appointing young cadets to the US Military Academies according to one criterion above all others -- their depth of religious zealotry. This infusion of young officers who believe in a coming apocalypse is discreetly worrisome at West Point and Annapolis, but it has already had newsworthy effects at the Air Force Academy, in Colorado Springs. A town that is also now known as a main locus and training center for fanatics bent on dominating American civilization. (see) This coincidence... one of many that simply cannot be coincidence... should be tallied and noted.
See also this in recent -- 11/26 -- news
"... Among the steps already taken by the Pentagon that enhanced its domestic capabilities was the establishment after 9/11 of Northern Command, or Northcom, in Colorado Springs, to provide military forces to help in reacting to terrorist threats in the continental United States. Today, Northcom's intelligence centers in Colorado and Texas fuse reports from CIFA, the FBI and other U.S. agencies, and are staffed by 290 intelligence analysts. That is more than the roughly 200 analysts working for the State Department's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, and far more than those at the Department of Homeland Security...." posted by hank at 3:37 PM PST - 29 comments
Seymour Hersh's fact piece in the current New Yorker lays out current behind-the-scenes thinking about getting out of Iraq. One piece of the article talks about the problems created by the President's sense that he has a divine mandate to pursue his policies...
...the President had become more detached, leaving more issues to Karl Rove and Vice-President Cheney. “They keep him in the gray world of religious idealism, where he wants to be anyway,” the former defense official said.
Most worrisome to some in the military are questions about reducing American troops and substituting air power for boots on the ground. Apparently the air war has been growing without much comment from the congress or media. Hersh cites a press release that the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing alone has dropped over 500,000 tons of ordinance. But if American troops are gone, who will provide targeting for the air strikes? The scenario of handing targeting over to the Iraqis apparently makes many military planners uncomfortable. posted by jasper411 at 10:10 AM PST - 45 comments
How do you split up $11 billion? That's enough to evenly split $500,000 per Goldman Sachs employee. It's bonus season on Wall Street. Extensive interviews with current and former Goldman Sachs employees and a best guess of how all of the money gets disbursed. posted by suprfli at 9:55 AM PST - 44 comments
"It doesn't even need a conductor, and there is not even any need for rehearsals together. Each instrumentalist receives sheet music and a disc with the sound track to which he will be linked during the concert, and that way he can practice at home, by himself; and then they come straight to the concert and play freely, whatever they want. A sound that is random as opposed to planned, a precise pitch for a note, as opposed to a false note, that's what leads the work. And here, toward the end, order gradually prevails".Arik Shapira talks about his new concerto for piano and orchestra. posted by matteo at 9:17 AM PST - 16 comments
The Butcher of Andijan. Uzbekistan Interior Minister Zakirjon Almatov is currently on an extended visit to Germany. Nothing strange or particularly newsworthy about that, you might think - until you realise that Almatov has been declared persona non grata by the EU as one of 12 Uzbek officials "directly responsible for the indiscriminate and disproportionate use of force" in the massacre of hundreds of unarmed protesters in the east Uzbekistan city of Andijan. posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:10 AM PST - 8 comments
Abuse in Iraq Now Worse Then Under Saddam 'People are doing the same as [in] Saddam's time and worse,' [Iraq Prime Minister] Ayad Allawi told The Observer. 'It is an appropriate comparison. People are remembering the days of Saddam. These were the precise reasons that we fought Saddam and now we are seeing the same things.'
Let's see ... no WMDs, no al-Queda ties, and now this. I'm so glad that we are making Iraq a better place. posted by robhuddles at 5:41 PM PST - 69 comments
Maisara did not look back. She could hear an odd, ever-louder roar. But she never actually saw what she was running from. Only Anis, looking over her mother's left shoulder, beheld the oncoming water. "Mama, what is that?" the little girl kept yelling.
What have you told your children about Muhammad Ali? "I was frequently left with tingling all over because I had been in the presence of such a great man and still humbled by his compassion, tolerance and understanding." Inspired by this weekend's airing by ESPN Classic of most of Tyson's fights, I started thinking about the difference between these two men. Ali obviously transcended his sport and has become more than just a boxer while Tyson is clearly a lost and troubled soul. And yet Tyson's story still inspires reflection. Nietzche's statement that "What someone is, begins to be revealed when his talent abates, when he stops showing us what he can do" is perfectly illustrated by the twilight years of these two legendary boxers. posted by spicynuts at 2:08 PM PST - 47 comments
HOOAH! "The world's most powerful military has devoted its considerable resources to making an energy bar, and the results are impressive." Finally, you too can enjoy the delicious cuisine of the U.S. Military without having to join. posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:53 AM PST - 59 comments
Thou Shalt Not Not Rock! If you didn't get a chance to get out to Church to rid yourself of your sins, why not let the Brooklyn-based Sin Destroyers rock the Evil out of you. "When you think about it, it's simple. If God created everything, including trees and Japan, he could certainly wail harder than anyone. A rock band in his name would rock harder than everyone else combined! Furthermore, Jesus kicks ass with his unstoppable stream of goodness. The Virgin Mary was smoking hot and still kept her shirt on. Only a heathen can deny the cosmic allure of the Holy Spirit. For all of their indefatigable awesomeness, they ask for only one thing in return: to spread their word. Furthermore, Jesus kicks ass with his unstoppable stream of goodness. The Virgin Mary was smoking hot and still kept her shirt on. Only a heathen can deny the cosmic allure of the Holy Spirit. For all of their indefatigable awesomeness, they ask for only one thing in return: to spread their word."(via.) posted by pelican at 6:36 AM PST - 21 comments
23. It's like Flickr, alot like Flickr--and maybe better. Better at some things. Stories. Upload limits. The layout. Ordering prints. They are doing things from the beginning that Flickr worked a couple years to figure out in the first place. Flickr of course is way ahead of 23 in numbers (people and money). Does it make sense to challenge that lead? (And to do so with an overt knock-off?) If 23 provides a better service, should they lose out for being second to the party? How can they pay their debt of gratitude to Flickr for being the obvious inspiration and an open-book instruction manual, and should they? When does the flattery of imitation become legitimate--or illegitimate--competition? Notice in the terms they claim ownership of the concept and the design. Can 23 apply for any of the street cred Flickr may have given up in favor of being Yahoo!ed? Is it reasonable to expect better work from a scrappy upstart than a happy sell-out? Can two successful photo sharing sites co-exist, or join forces? Is there enough community to support more than one good one? posted by airguitar at 12:32 PM PST - 32 comments
CO2 'highest for 650,000 years'Current levels of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere are higher now than at any time in the past 650,000 years. (Found via Treehugger)
Sounds like it's time to buy that lovely oceanfront property in Kansas. posted by Mr Bluesky at 9:08 AM PST - 38 comments
Asterix gets political. After over four decades of defending his lone holdout village from Roman attack, French children's book icon Asterix is taking on America in the latest novel. The village is besieged by an alien army whose leader is named Hubs, (a thinly veiled anagram of the U.S. President). The aliens invade seeking non-existent weapons of mass destruction. posted by jonson at 11:53 PM PST - 35 comments
Deep Time. “Once we realize that Deep Time can never support narratives of evolution, we are forced to accept that virtually everything we thought we knew about evolution is wrong.” It’s not the latest salvo from the proponents of intelligent design... [more inside] posted by nanojath at 10:29 PM PST - 65 comments
Faith based prisons... Can Gov. Jeb Bush's new drive to introduce God to the inmates make a difference, or was Jesus 'dying for our sins' not enough already? Is Jesus a solution or an excuse?
"Night has fallen. He has died now.
A fly crawls over the still flesh.
Of what use is it to me that this man suffered,
If I am suffering now?" - Jorge Luis Borges posted by 0bvious at 7:34 PM PST - 36 comments
Transit in Detroit details an urban planner's initiative to cut the costs of the city's traffic congestion-relieving highway expansion by proposing a transit system combining light rail and bus-rapid-transit. [More Inside] posted by gregb1007 at 7:13 PM PST - 15 comments
First they take Ugarte and then she walks in. On the 9th of December 2005, Deborah Davis will be arraigned in U.S. District Court in a case that will determine whether people must show "papers" whenever police demand them. Unlike Dudley Hiibel (discussed on mefi last year) who had (arguably) caused a disturbance meriting police attention, Deb was just riding the bus when she was "welcomed" to the Denver Federal Center. posted by Smedleyman at 2:04 PM PST - 35 comments
We all know the story: little Elli, a girl living in the steppes of Kanzas with her dog Totoshka, is blown by a hurricane (stirred up by the wicked witch Gingema) all the way to Magic Land, where she meets the Cowardly Lion, the Iron Woodman, and the scarecrow Strashila and has to make her way to the Emerald City to find the magician Gudvin so she can get back home... What, you don't remember it that way? Didn't you read The Wizard of the Emerald City and its much-loved sequels Urfin Jus and his Wooden Soldiers, The Seven Underground Kings, The Fiery God of the Marrans, The Yellow Fog, and The Mystery of the Deserted Castle? Ah, you're not Russian! Listen [RealAudio] to a five-minute description (on Studio 360) of Alexander Volkov's Russified versions of Baum (with illustrations by Leonid Vladimirsky) and how they captivated children and adults in the Soviet Union (you even get a bit of the famous song Мы в город Изумрудный/ Идем дорогой трудной ["We're going to the Emerald City by a difficult road..."]); visit the Emerald City website (Russian version, where all the links work); and see the wonderful illustrations at this site, which links to the texts of all six novels (click on Читать...)—in Russian, but the images need no explanation. (Fun fact: the word "Oz" doesn't occur anywhere in the Russian versions.) And if you're interested in other alternate versions, go to Oz Outside the Famous Forty. (Via P. Kerim Friedman.) posted by languagehat at 12:17 PM PST - 21 comments
George Best dies at 59. Footballer George Best has died today from an infection after a protracted iillness due to ill health following his battles with alcoholism.
A great talent he was famous for his good looks, ability and love of the ladies.
"I spent a lot of money on booze, birds and fast cars - the rest I just squandered."
Latin Podcasting is now available featuring recordings of neo-Latin colloquia saved as mp3 files. From Willard McCarty on the Humanist Discussion List: "So far there's only the Prima Salutatio of 3 minutes 21 seconds, but more is promised." They've already registered the project with the iTunes Podcast Directory and Bloglines. Future plans include adding captions. posted by leo at 12:30 PM PST - 3 comments
"The artist would perch himself on a bench in the town square, sketchbook and pencil in hand.
In between doodles of his beloved wife and 'Miss Kitty', the pet cat, he'd fill page after page with the other subjects that consumed him: The panhandlers who sat under elm trees hungering for pocket change as lovers strolled to dinner and children played on the grass ...
Sometimes, the vagrants he studied would notice the pencil and book and hesitantly approach. He'd share his drawing. They'd talk. Sooner or later, the artist would brave the question: Would you happen to know my son?" posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:15 AM PST - 15 comments
Thanksgiving sucks.The English went on setting fire to wigwams of the village. They burned village after village to the ground. As one of the leading theologians of his day, Dr. Cotton Mather put it: "It was supposed that no less than 600 Pequot souls were brought down to hell that day." And Cotton Mather, clutching his bible, spurred the English to slaughter more Indians in the name of Christianity. posted by j-urb at 10:49 AM PST - 55 comments
Thanksgiving Dinner Buzzword Bingo helps make tonight's dinner with family a little more palatable. Print out cards for you and your other cool relative (spouse, sibling) and check off a box every time one of these situations happens. First to get 5 in a row wins. Remember to shout "Bingo!" at the table. posted by FeldBum at 10:19 AM PST - 12 comments
Despite the vast number of religions, nearly everyone in the world believes in the same things: the existence of a soul, an afterlife, miracles, and the divine creation of the universe. Recently psychologists doing research on the minds of infants have discovered two related facts that may account for this phenomenon. One: human beings come into the world with a predisposition to believe in supernatural phenomena. And two: this predisposition is an incidental by-product of cognitive functioning gone awry. Which leads to the question ...
Short film of climber Dan Osman scaling Lover's Leap in California without ropes, racing over 400 vertical feet in just under four & a half minutes. Link goes to direct wmv download. Having never heard of Osman before, I was shocked to find out that his daredevil ways led to an early death when a rope snapped while Osman was performing a modfied form of bungie jumping in Yosemite back in 1999. posted by jonson at 7:16 PM PST - 79 comments
Typophile speculates. We have several symbols in english that stand for words commonly used enough that simplifying their written forms (@, &, %) became common. What would have happened if chat-speak had become common before computers, people started writing them in shorthand, and type foundries realized that we needed a Helvitica Medium Bold version of the WTF ligature? posted by eriko at 6:26 PM PST - 41 comments
China isn't known for being open about most things, including the spread of deadly diseases. (Many will remember China's original attempt to cover up SARS. As the International Society for Infectious Diseases reports, a prominent WHO virologist has made a claim that China has now experienced at least 300 human avian flu deaths and is actively attempting to cover this information up. "We are systematically deceived," he is reported to have said. "At least 5 medical co-workers who should be reporting on the
situation in the provinces were arrested, and [other] publication-willing
researchers were threatened with punishments." posted by chakalakasp at 5:56 PM PST - 27 comments
Some of you might remember Bill Harris, who credited his "miracle kitty" named, well, Miss Kitty, for saving his life during Hurricane Katrina. He died today at age 63. Video of their reunion here. (imbedded .asf) posted by Cyrano at 3:56 PM PST - 9 comments
Canada boots out its government: the Non-confidenceVote. A binding, non-confidence vote is being tabled and the minority parties -- which collectively hold a majority of seats -- agree to support it. It's also a bit historical: it has been more than a century since a general, binding non-confidence vote has been tabled all by itself, unattached to a big-issue item like the budget. posted by five fresh fish at 12:42 PM PST - 134 comments
Ten days after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, President Bush was told in a highly classified briefing that the U.S. intelligence community had no evidence linking the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein to the attacks and that there was scant credible evidence that Iraq had any significant collaborative ties with Al Qaeda, according to government records and current and former officials with firsthand knowledge of the matter.
Congotronics! Mawangu Mingiedi, 72, a musician and truck driver from Kinshasa, was simply trying to allow the music of his street band, Konono No. 1, be heard over the traffic and street noise, but when he fashioned home-made amplifiers out of junkyard parts he created something raw and distorted with a sound all its own (quicktime). (via MonkeySARS, where an MP3 awaits you) posted by Robot Johnny at 8:55 PM PST - 41 comments
Cheap oil for the masses. "Officials from Venezuela and Massachusetts have signed a deal providing cheap heating oil to low-income homes in the US state.
The fuel will be sold at some 40% below market prices to thousands of homes over the winter months.
Local congressman William Delahunt described the deal as "an expression of humanitarianism at its very best". [Newsfilter] Why do you hate America, Hugo? posted by wilful at 7:09 PM PST - 135 comments
Bran-Man is not really like the well-known and oft-linked StorTroopers, or the equally-ubiquitous Lego Mini-Mizer, or any number of "make-a-likeness-of-yourself" DollMakers that are out there. No handy-dandy online Java interface with the Bran-Man -- you must needs download a template and make the art yourself (within some minimal guidelines). Some of the results are delightful. (Some are mildly NSFW.) Via Drawn! posted by Gator at 6:52 PM PST - 2 comments
Breath Capture is a patent pending method and apparatus for collecting human breath as a keepsake display. Bonus: if your loved one can't be near you because you are surrounded by Vampires, the BreathCapture pendant can be worn as a crucifix. Before you mock this product, take this simple test. posted by jonson at 6:11 PM PST - 37 comments
Remember the JCB Song? [Warning: Flash and Heart Warming Cuteness] Well they're going for a much coveted Christmas Number 1! Their single is released December 12th in the UK.
Non-UK residents may be unfamiliar with the Christmas Number 1 phenomenon - Being #1 in the music charts on Christmas Day - guaranteeing near-constant air-play and exposure. Disclaimer: Not affiliated with the band. Just sick of rubbish xmas #1s. posted by lemonfridge at 5:34 PM PST - 22 comments
Free land. Northwest North Dakota has an opportunity for 5,000 people.
Not the first 5,000... the right 5,000.
odds are, you are not a candidate for nw north dakota. you have succumbed to the cities. all of your pleasure must be provided and you gladly stand in long lines to receive them. but if you are of those who is wondering what they are doing in that line, continue this may be the journey you have been waiting for, but had no idea where the line was to get tickets. it's ok; there are no lines in nw north dakota./small>
They're doing it in Kansas, too. posted by Kwantsar at 2:25 PM PST - 49 comments
Pro-Ad Blog is a website for bloggers who choose to put advertising on their blogs. Aparently an answer to Ad-Free Blogs, this bunny seems to be very happy for the monthly check from Google Adsense. posted by neo at 2:18 PM PST - 24 comments
What's so extreme about Extreme Sports? According to the ads, Extreme Sports are the antidote to our safety-first, shrink-wrapped world. In reality, sports like skateboarding and mountain biking are more about the appearance of risk and marketing-driven terms like 'carving out your own path' rather than any particular danger. The reality of these Extreme Sports? Many are actually safer than traditional sports. posted by fet at 12:40 PM PST - 60 comments
If you're going to run a Ferrari repairshop, you want to make sure your softcore is classy enough.
Italian tire manufacture, Pirelli "offers you the unique opportunity to view many photos shot for the calendars but never published in the definitive editions, as well as know about the artistic directors, backstage, models, photographers and the story of the most awaited calendar in the world." So it's not just about gorgeous women in various states on undress, it's art damnit. (NSFW, Flash) posted by Keith Talent at 11:42 AM PST - 31 comments
In 2001 America destroyed the Kabul offices of al-Jazeera with two smartbombs; officials said it was an accident. In 2003 America destroyed the Baghdad offices of al-Jazeera with missiles; officials said it was an accident. Now, two British civil servants are on trial for leaking a memo revealing that Bush intended to bomb al-Jazeera... at their headquarters in allied Qatar. posted by Pretty_Generic at 8:28 AM PST - 155 comments
READY TO ROLL? " . .Carnival produces $900 million in annual spending and more than $50 million in direct tax benefits to government. " New Orleans depends on tourism , now more than ever before. but are they really ready to host Mardi Gras in 06? What are locals saying? This will make the 150thCarnival the city has seen, but should it take place? posted by nola at 7:08 AM PST - 11 comments
Friday fun (HST)... Pure sweet insanity...somebody has been playing too many video games...Semi-pro probably totally illegal hi jinks on Swedens highways and byways...andrenaline rush just watching this...and oh yeah its official... Google owns the world...(warning embedded 14 minute video....) and ..umm...you can buy tires here... tires.com ...you can catch glimpses of the bikes speedo that I assume are in KPH... posted by Muirwylde at 11:17 PM PST - 56 comments
There's been alot of discussion, both in the mainstream media and in a plethora of links here on MeFi, about the Christian Right's view on the issues of gay marriage and abortion. But what of
The Church of Scientology? Well, as it turns out, they're
notbigfans. But much like Christianity, there is apparently a 'moderate' Scientology as well, and at least one ex-member argues that Scientology
has no strong edicts in regards to gay marriage. An interesting insight into how a big ticket issue is considered and debated within one of the world's major cults. posted by Effigy2000 at 10:48 PM PST - 35 comments
Dulce et Decorum Est Kurt Vonnegut was interviewed by an Australian newspaper, which took the quote out of context and completely missed the poetic reference Vonnegut was making with the comment , thereby generating what will likely be a firestorm of negative publicity for Vonnegut. (A blogger's negative reaction was Farked.)
I am sure that Metafilter readers would spot the reference, but having been Farked and misquoted on ABC (Australian TV), Vonnegut is probably in as much trouble as Terrell Owens. posted by notmtwain at 8:28 PM PST - 80 comments
Folder Share is an online service that synchronizes multiple pcs, or just specific folders in multiple pcs, by creating a localized p2p network. You could use it, for example, to keep your work & home mp3 collections identical. Until recently, the service cost $50/year, thanks to corporate largesse (and doubtless, evil intentions on the part of the new owner, Microsoft), it's now free. Unless you place some value on not letting Microsoft catalog what's on your PC. posted by jonson at 2:50 PM PST - 28 comments
Women are prohibited from being assigned to combat roles, but some still find themselves on the front lines. "Before this war, people only imagined how women would react in combat roles and thought that they couldn't handle it ... Now we see that women are bonding with the men and not going to pieces." Also, an interview with Kayla Williams, author of 'Love My Rifle More Than You'. posted by Alison at 2:20 PM PST - 40 comments
Suicide by exterminator. "Not since Cock Robin has the death of a tiny bird caused such emotion". An endangered bird killed for "knocking over a few dominoes for a game". Granted, 23,000 dominoes in a world record attempt taking over a month to set up, but still, less than 1% of the final goal. Geenstijl.nl offered a bounty of 5000 euri for anyone who "willen saboteren" but it is now too late. klik heir for a tv clip of the record. posted by dness2 at 2:02 PM PST - 44 comments
The Big Cover-Up: "Where once the sight of a fully hidden woman was restricted to a few traditionalist communities, nowadays it is not unusual to see the niqab on high streets throughout the major cities of England and in a number of smaller towns. Just a decade ago, this form of enshrouding was seen as an unambiguous sign of female oppression and feudal custom, but now it is frequently referred to as an expression of religious identity, individual rights and even, in some cases, female emancipation." Veil: The view from the inside: "I was in the same Metro carriage as a nun and I smiled at our similarity of dress. Hers was the symbol of her devotion to God, as is that of a Muslimah. I often wonder why people say nothing about the veil of the Catholic nun but criticize vehemently the veil of a Muslimah, regarding it as a symbol of` 'terrorism' and 'oppression.'" Politics of the veil: "Before I wore a headscarf I always slumped with my head looking down; now I walk straight and I look up at people. It's not that they accept me more than they did before, it's just that I don't care anymore how they regard me."
(Europe's Burqa Wars, Niqabs in the Classroom?) posted by heatherann at 12:31 PM PST - 213 comments
Rare photographs of 60's Greenwich Village by Robert Otter. A genuine labor of love project, New York Tenor saxophonist/composer Ned Otter has compiled the work of his father Robert, a gifted photographer who passed away in 1986. Spanning 1962 through 1972, Otter's photographs capture moments from a Greenwich Village of the 60's that seem both inexplicably foreign and timelessly familiar. via alex posted by rodney stewart at 11:55 AM PST - 23 comments
Glenn Mitchell passes away. If you don't live in the Dallas area or listen to KERA "on the sly," as Glenn used to say, you have no idea who Glenn Mitchell was. If he had lived a few months longer, you would have heard him on XM Radio starting in early 2006. Possibly the best interviewer of our age. He left us far to early. Check out the forum to see what he meant to his listeners. Rest in peace, Glenn. posted by Doohickie at 11:07 AM PST - 18 comments
Quitting France:French Jews are leaving the country in ever-growing numbers, fleeing a wave of anti-Semitism. They are moving to Israel, the United States, and increasingly, Montreal -- where the mostly English-speaking Jewish community is preparing for its greatest demographic change in decades. An interesting if slightly anecdotal look at the situation for Jewish people in France from Canada's National Post.
Part 1 - Barricaded in Paris, Part 2 - Taking leave of 'the fear', Part 3 tomorrow deals with the impact of the influx of French Jews in Montreal. posted by loquax at 10:32 AM PST - 67 comments
Ka-BOOM! :: A Dictionary of Comicbook Words on Historical Principles, Based on the Latest Conclusions of the Most Dubious Wordologists & Comprising Many Hundreds of New Words which Modern Literature, Science & Philosophy have Neglected to Acknowledge as True, Proper & Useful Terms & Which Have Never Before Been Published in Any Lexicon posted by anastasiav at 9:37 AM PST - 17 comments
A Dutch television producer, who previously brought you Big Brother, now produces a show for British commercial television were you witness the training of three lucky guys to become astronauts and their subsequent launch into earth's orbit for 4 days.
They are trained in a Russian facility and are launched with a Russian rocket. There is only one catch: it's all fake. When they leave their orbiter to make a space walk they will be welcomed by their family and friends, and find out they never left England.
If I were one of the contestants I'd go postal after this. But of course these contestants were specially selected to be prone to suggestion, so they will probably just forever hide in corner so they won't hear the constant mockery.. posted by kika at 8:30 AM PST - 69 comments
Who needs bunnies when you have kids to test on? "Protections for Subjects in Human Research," a newly proposed EPA rule allows for: for government and industry scientists to treat children as human guinea pigs in chemical experiments in the following situations:
1. Children who "cannot be reasonably consulted," such as those that are mentally handicapped or orphaned newborns may be tested on. With permission from the institution or guardian in charge of the individual, the child may be exposed to chemicals for the sake of research.
2. Parental consent forms are not necessary for testing on children who have been neglected or abused.
3. Chemical studies on any children outside of the U.S. are acceptable. And don't miss the Q&A section below. Sec. 26.408 of the EPA document is where you'll find the provisions and waivers mentioned (it refers to other sections absent from the document, weirdly). posted by amberglow at 6:49 AM PST - 43 comments
Diggdot.usDigg, slashdot, and del.icio.us/popular - this is a constant browsing cycle for us. So why not combine them into a unified format without all the extra chrome? We can eliminate dupes and add some extra niceities. posted by srboisvert at 6:37 AM PST - 22 comments
Students shape Ferrari's future - The 4 winners of the Ferrari design competition have been announced. If these designs are anything to go by, there are exciting times ahead.
Now if I could only win the lottery so I could afford one of these... posted by SharQ at 6:06 AM PST - 15 comments
The Lucifer Project. "This is a documentation and study of the feasibility of creating a sustainable fusion reaction from an initial fission reaction on Saturn caused by a significant quantity of Plutonium-238 being inserted deep into the atmosphere." [via: del.icio.us/blackbeltjones] posted by gsb at 2:33 AM PST - 33 comments
All hail the King of Fuh Since 1965, Stephen "Brute Force" Friedland has been a professional blower of minds. He began his musical career penning the first existential/psychedelic girl group record, graduated to tapeworms and sat-upon sandwiches, then was personally signed by George Harrison as an Apple artist with the sly and ultimately unreleasable "King of Fuh." (Turn it inside out. There, you see. MP3.)
But oddball songs of love and linguistic quirkiness are just the tip of Brutie's iceberg. In 1969, he swam half way across the Bering Strait in a symbolic plea to warm up the cold war. He does deliciously absurd stand-up prop comedy interspersed with song. And his eyebrows are a work of art in their own right. So all hail the Fuh King, who has never compromised his deliriously batty vision, and at this point assuredly never will. posted by Scram at 9:03 PM PST - 8 comments
Discovering Sherlock Holmes. From January through April 2006, Stanford University will be republishing a collection of Sherlock Holmes stories, "just as they were originally printed and illustrated in The Strand Magazine." (Thesepages have images of some of the original covers.) You can subscribe to receive paper facsimiles of the original magazine by mail or be notified when the PDFs are published online. The project is a followup to their Discovering Dickens project, which republished Great Expectations, A Tale of Two Cities, and Hard Times. [via MonkeyFilter] posted by kirkaracha at 4:17 PM PST - 19 comments
B - Lite He is white. He is blind. He is a rapper with an old school sound. And he may worship Satan.
Sea Cruise is my fave but MeFiers will probably dig Wall - Mart. Mp3s on right. posted by vronsky at 3:40 PM PST - 22 comments
A blog invitational - Jazz group The Bad Plus came up with a list of conceptually similar authors and bands. They now invite readers to add their own submissions. The type of similarity between the band and the author is up to you: examples from the band's original list include Tom Waits/Charles Bukowski, Jewel/Danielle Steele, and Rush/J.R.R. Tolkien. Here is the first set of fan submissions, and here is another blog that is participating.> posted by ism at 1:06 PM PST - 61 comments
Locked doors thwart escape.Irked by a reporter who told [Bush] he seemed to be "off his game" at a Beijing public appearance, President George W. Bush sought to make a hasty exit from a news conference but was thwarted by locked doors. The look on his face is priceless. posted by SirOmega at 12:53 PM PST - 91 comments
DriveTime. Live in Boston? Need a ride to (or from) work? You could be a guest on Ravi Jain's weekly video blog/talk show/commute. Episodes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6, (QT .mov) posted by steef at 10:29 AM PST - 5 comments
The Dictionary of the Khazars "For all its delights, for all the structural novelty and the comic inventiveness of the imagery, it must be said there is something rather light and airy about this book. It is fun to chase down all the linkages between entries; but as they are conjoined more by the bubbling repetition of motifs and the requirements of the formal devices than by real narrative event or development, it is, as Mr. Pavic himself suggests, a bit like working a crossword puzzle." posted by dhruva at 1:53 AM PST - 9 comments
Sign a Donor Card! Organ transplantation has taken great leaps and bounds. What used to take twelve to fourteen hours for, say, a liver transplant, has now been reduced (in some cases) to a three-hour operation. Holding times (the length of time for which an organ can be between donor and recipient) have increased. What hasn’t increased are the number of donors. (mi) posted by MiHail at 8:25 PM PST - 47 comments
The Rendon Group -- covert perception managers using our taxpayer money to start wars. ... the product of a clandestine operation -- part espionage, part PR campaign -- that had been set up and funded by the CIA and the Pentagon for the express purpose of selling the world a war. ... it was hired by the CIA to help "create the conditions for the removal of Hussein from power." Working under this extraordinary transfer of secret authority, Rendon assembled a group of anti-Saddam militants, personally gave them their name -- the Iraqi National Congress -- and served as their media guru and "senior adviser" as they set out to engineer an uprising against Saddam. ... Rolling Stone thoroughly documents the way we pay to be lied into war and one of the people who do it. From Noriega and Panama through to Chalabi, Miller, al-Haideri, Bush, and you. posted by amberglow at 10:58 AM PST - 38 comments
The glass trick. (Note: includes embedded video. Soundtrack is mostly in Japanese but can be ignored.)
I've been a magician for almost 40 years now and am up on the latest tech but I have very little idea of how the performer accomplishes what you see in this video. posted by lupus_yonderboy at 10:22 AM PST - 68 comments
The Image Culture - a discussion of the history, manipulation, desensitization and supplanting of language skills by the ubiquity of images. And no, there are no pretty pictures. posted by peacay at 7:39 AM PST - 38 comments
How Ebert Gave Oprah Her Start. "Yes, it is true, I persuaded Oprah to become the most successful and famous woman in the world. I was also the person who suggested that Jerry Springer not go into syndication, for which I have received too little credit." posted by adrober at 3:43 PM PST - 33 comments
An iTunes For The Rest Of Us? Just for laughs I often flip through my (free subscription!) Stereophile magazine. You know, the one with the ads for the $12000 speaker wire and $5000 CD players. Imagine my surprise when I saw a preview of a new music service, MusicGiants, that is offering lossless music downloads for $1.29 each. Targeted to "audiophiles", MusicGiants is also selling its "SoundVault", which seems like some kind of Windows Media Center PC, albeit with a $10,000 price tag, and an ability to download the lossless tracks to some portable media players, with the notable exception of the iPod. Oh, and there's a $50 annual fee (!). Ho hum so far, but then I noticed that the service has significant buy in from most of the major labels, indicating that they seem to have developed some faith in the ability of Microsoft's DRM to shield their "top quality" downloads from pirates. My thinking on this is that if successful, it should prompt Apple to offer lossless downloads from the iTMS Service, if only because Apple likes to present a "high end" image, and having a competitor actively dissing iTMS by lumping it in, quality-wise, with "pirated music from p2p networks" has got to hurt. posted by meehawl at 12:39 PM PST - 63 comments
Finds. The Portable Antiquities Scheme is a voluntary effort to record archeological objects found by the U.K. public. Searchable database of finds from the Paleolithic, through Roman times, up to the 18th-century. With images, and an accompanying website for kids. posted by steef at 10:55 AM PST - 3 comments
Bryanboy: Le Superstar Fabuleux. Apparently Derek Zoolander was based on a real person; and he blogs. "Adventures of the new-moneyed classess bitch from hell. Vulgarity is the new discreet. Trash is the new exclusivity. Third world has never been this *burp* chic. You just have to scroll down as in down!" posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:46 AM PST - 31 comments
Dutch West Internet based comedy troupe from NYC. Updated Thursdays with sketch comedy and musical (and sometimes political) "white box sessions". They also do a live show downtown the first and third Saturday of the month. Their Myspace has showtimes listed.
Got tipped off to these guys after catching their live show by chance and I've been following them ever since. posted by xmod2 at 9:35 AM PST - 3 comments
"I shall clasp my hands together and bow to the corners of the world."Bridge of Birds by Barry Hughart won the World Fantasy Award in 1985. Set in a China that never was, it tells the tale of Master Li Kao, who has a slight flaw in his character, and Number Ten Ox as they uncover the mysteries of a cursed town, a terrible duke, and a beautiful woman. Originally intended to be the first in a series of seven, Bridge of Birds spawned only two sequels. The reclusive author explains some of his influences and poor luck here. Also, for those of you familiar with the story, the original draft of Bridge of Birds (PDF version) is available online! posted by robocop is bleeding at 8:36 AM PST - 18 comments
Heidi Fleiss plans to open a brothel . . . . . . which will cater to women in Nevada.
Money quote: " . . . you've got the situation with the old husband leaving his wife for the younger girl, and the lady sitting at home crying. Well, now she has a place to go and say, 'Right back at you, buddy, and on your credit card'. posted by chai-rista at 7:49 AM PST - 128 comments
Instructables for showing what you make and how to make it. Not just any DIY site, the creator Saul Griffith has an impressive pedigree. The site comes with all the things you'd expect from a new collaborative widget including Creative Commons licensing options and of course tags. From the about page: "We like to think about the physical world as something that is programmable. We like to think of objects or stuff you make as 'code'. In other words, we are approaching the physical world as something that is describable and replicable." Dive in and learn how to make a pimped out megaphone helmet, Hungarian bookshelves or canned applesauce. (via) posted by jessamyn at 7:34 AM PST - 14 comments
God's Debris by Scott Adams (of Dilbert fame) is now available for free in PDF form. It's a controversial book that presents a philosophically strange view of the universe. According to Adams, it splits readers between "the best book they've ever read" and "an insult to literature and a disservice to humanity". posted by Plutor at 6:57 AM PST - 44 comments
Intelligent Design. Traces of this epic masterpiece of creation can be found in all religious writings and traditions. It is to them that Moses, Jesus, Buddha and Mohammed referred. It is now time to welcome them. To your child's classroom. posted by Otis at 6:24 AM PST - 12 comments
How concerned should Americans be about the right-wing slant and use of the news for political purposes by a large broadcaster? No, not Fox, but Sinclair Broadcast Group, a company many had never heard of until the Nightline controversy discussed here. Setting aside bias, if they've subverted the rules as alleged, are they any better than this corporation, which was found unfit to be a broadcaster and stripped of its licenses? posted by evilcolonel at 8:49 PM PST - 53 comments
This year “some people wanted the word ‘brainstorming’ replaced by ‘thought shower’ so as not to offend people with brain disorders, and they also wanted ‘deferred success’ to replace ‘failure’ so as not to embarrass those who don’t succeed.” These words and phrases are just a couple cited by Global Language Monitor as the year’s most politically correct words and phrases.
The phrase that topped this year’s list was ‘misguided criminals,’ one of several terms the British Broadcasting Corp. used so as not to use the word ‘terrorist’ in describing those who carried out train and bus bombings in London this summer.
Ninth on the top 10 list were words and phrases that de-Christianize the Christian holidays – such as “Seasons Greetings” replacing “Merry Christmas” – a practice that has upset some American Catholics, demanding that customers of Wal-Mart boycott the retail chain until they drop the phrase “Happy Holidays” and return to using “Merry Christmas.” posted by ericb at 7:31 PM PST - 65 comments
No Condition is Permanent. World music, and African music in particular, often falls into two categories: pleasant and inoccuous, or the fetishized other. Even speaking of "African" music is misleading. Senegalese mbalax doesn't sound that much like Camaroonian makossa.
And I don't say this as some great authority; I'm still just at the beginning of the learning curve.
So come along with me. There's the broad Benne Loxo du Taccu, the sidebar of Mudd Up!, the great (and self-explanitory) African Hiphop, Stern's Music (this link going to a more accessible Thione Seck), Aduna (for Francophones— my middle-school French gets me by, but I'm really there for the music), Du Bruit (more Francophones, with an emphasis on vinyl sharities), and Worldly Disorientation (which covers all sorts of world music, but has some excellent African stuff).
Have I missed anything great? Recommend it in the thread. I tend to prefer the psychedelic and dubby stuff more than straight folk styles, but that's me. posted by klangklangston at 3:17 PM PST - 42 comments
Baja 1000 starts Forget sports in 2011 . Today is the start of this years Baja 1000 . How can you not want to see a race with warnings like;
"4) The roads used for this race course are open to the public. You must expect at all times to encounter oncoming traffic, as well as cattle roaming freely on and around the race course." See the movie about the 2003 event. posted by stuartmm at 3:07 PM PST - 12 comments
"Imagine finding friendship and love on your iPod ... with ... the world's first dating/social networking site that brings together the growing popularity of the online dating space and the enormous success of the iPod." via posted by airguitar at 2:31 PM PST - 11 comments
Chomsky gets his apology. The world's most famous public intellectual would appear to have been vindicated back after the hatchet job done on him in the Guardian by Emma Brockes two weeks ago. The Guardian has had to withdraw the offending article from its site and Ms Brockes has made no comment after her employer's Correction & Clarifications tore strips off of her article.
The original article was previously discussed here. posted by ClanvidHorse at 1:32 PM PST - 42 comments
Meanwhile, further South, it’s also election day in the Falkland Islands, complete with flying ballot boxes and a campaign in which, (rightly or wrongly), even 23 years after the conflict, many of thecandidatesmanifestos juggle the usual municipal chit-chat that occupies a population of under 3,000 with matters of international diplomacy, such as
councillors’ visits to the UN,and whether Argentina should be ignored, resisted or befriended. posted by penguin pie at 9:28 AM PST - 20 comments
What products were made with vermiculite from the mine in Libby?Much of the Libby vermiculite was used to produce attic insulation products, often sold under the brand name Zonolite. Vermiculite was commonly sold in gardening and hardware stores. It was used as a soil amendment (conditioner to improve soil quality), fertilizer carrier, and it was an ingredient in many potting soil mixes. Vermiculite was also used in fireproofing materials, gypsum wallboard, and as a lightweight aggregate in construction materials. It's asbestos.Nightline is on it. And it's in millions of homes. Bush falters, concern grows, story explodes. posted by toma at 6:11 AM PST - 69 comments
Soft Cinema is a software+video project by media-theoristLevManovich, which 'mines the creative possibilities at the intersection of software culture, cinema, and architecture.' While perhaps more intriguing in prospect than in practice, it seems at least a noteworthy attempt at making something new. A DVDversion of the project was released earlier this year. posted by misteraitch at 2:53 AM PST - 8 comments
"Do you want to see niggers in the state capital with their feet on the desk?"
"This newspaper believes in white supremacy, and it believes that the poll tax is one of the essentials for the preservation of white supremacy." From "Suffrage in the South" Part I, published January 1st, 1940 [mi] posted by orthogonality at 12:15 AM PST - 50 comments
"Old Tom is the most famous of the Eden killer whales". The story of a pod of killer whales who enlisted the help of fishermen in NSW, Australia to hunt baleen whales. The pod would corral the whales, while Old Tom would tow the fishing boats out to sea by pulling the anchor ropes in his teeth. The reward? The fishermen left the whale overnight and the orcas got to eat the tongue. Alas, it seems Old Tom may have met his end when the covenant was broken and a fisherman named Logan tried to take the whale to shore before the feast. Tom tried to hold the boat back with the rope, but it broke a tooth which infected and led to his death. Tom's skeleton is now on display at the Eden Killer Whale Museum. His story inspired a young girl to become a biologist and investigate the story for herself. posted by qwip at 6:49 PM PST - 8 comments
Bodies still being found in NOLAYou know, it's hard to imagine anything worse than coming back to your home in New Orleans and finding it completely destroyed. But, tonight, as you're about to hear, there is something worse, much worse. Dozens of families have returned to what is left of their homes and found, lying amidst the mold and the wreckage, a body, forgotten, abandoned. Maybe it's their mother or their grandmother, sometimes even their missing child.More Here posted by srboisvert at 4:01 PM PST - 31 comments
Mainstream Media to American Democracy: Drop Dead! Brad Friedman ask alarming questions about the complete lack of attention which has been paid to the GAO report on electronic voting technology (PDF link) released more than a month ago, which confirms what security experts have been saying for years: these systems are vulnerable to multiple independent attacks targeting system and network vulnerabilities, access controls, hardware controls, and overall management practices. If you're short of time, at least read Rep. Waxman's fact sheet summary.
Ultimately, there is no real security on these machines; the report shows that overturning election results would not be at all difficult for even a single moderately skilled attacker. And now Bob Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman are wondering if American Democracy has died an electronic death in the wake of massive discrepancies between final pre-election opinion polls and the results of several citizen initiatives designed to reform Ohio's electoral processes. posted by dinsdale at 1:18 PM PST - 68 comments
Artist Tad Stones has started up the Hellboy Animated blog, which already has some great stuff up about character designs and style concepts for the in-production animated series based on Mike Mignola's comics. posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:01 AM PST - 10 comments
NSFW "Here at Fantasy Feeder we either want to be fat or we want to fatten. We're feeders and feedees obsessed with over endulging our huge bellies and fat bottoms, and we're here to share stories, play online games and encourage each other to gain weight." posted by holloway at 11:26 PM PST - 112 comments
NOISE is a global youth arts initiative (under 25s) that develops and profiles artists and their work across television, radio, in print and online. Requires Flash. [MI] posted by sjvilla79 at 7:58 PM PST - 3 comments
Save King's Quest IX. Ever since personal computers became powerful enough to run graphics-intensive action games, adventure games like the ones once produced by Sierra On-Line (King's Quest, Space Quest, Leisure Suit Larry, and countless other titles) and LucasArts (Maniac Mansion, Monkey Island, Sam & Max Hit The Road) have been in decline--most of the series have been abandoned, King's Quest was awkwardly morphed into an unsuccessful first-person fighting game, and Sam & Max 2 was famously cancelled (and, less famously, uncancelled).
In the last couple of years, the genre's gotten a shot in the arm from an active emulationcommunity, the ready availability of "abandonware," but mostly from unauthorized sequels and remakes created by fans and distributed for free. The flagship of these new games was to have been King's Quest IX, a three-part finale to the series that wrapped up all outstanding loose ends and properly said goodbye to the characters. The project team included forty people, some of whom worked on the game for more than four years. And, at the end of October, Vivendi Universal (which bought, then disbanded Sierra On-Line) pulled the plug. posted by Epenthesis at 7:27 PM PST - 40 comments
The Radiant Vista is a new photography site on the web that offers photoshop tutorials (in Quicktime and PDF) and daily photo critiques (Quicktime). Not much here for non-photographers, but I know a number of members have some interest in taking pictures and might find something good here. posted by TedW at 3:36 PM PST - 14 comments
Bush in the bunker. [this link takes you directly to the article, but will call up the print dialog] In a story seemingly out of Capital Hill Blue, sources say that "Mr. Bush maintains daily contact with only four people: first lady Laura Bush, his mother, Barbara Bush, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Undersecretary of State Karen Hughes. The sources also say that Mr. Bush has stopped talking with his father, except on family occasions." posted by caddis at 12:50 PM PST - 199 comments
Via AmericaBlog: Target responds to recent coverage of their policies on dispensing emergency contraception with a fluffy PR email that invokes, of all things, the Civil Rights Act of 1964. (No news yet on whether Jewish cashiers can refuse to sell pork or vegan cashiers can refuse to ring up all meat...) Unfortunately, Target isn't the only company doing this. But their popularity has made them a ripe target (!) for criticism. Whose civil rights are more important? Pharmacists' or customers'? posted by bitter-girl.com at 10:16 AM PST - 108 comments
The Ames Fan Club documents the life of each of the deceased department stores following the dissolution of their corporate souls. From Gallipolis to West Hartford, the shells of Ames have been photographed and critiqued. Some have lain dormant, logos still peeking out from between overturned racks and offline registers. Some have found new lives, though while the buildings remain, the smell of "bargains by the bagful" will never return. If only we could all age as gracefully as the Agawam Ames. posted by setanor at 8:25 AM PST - 26 comments
Games games games! Board games have under gone a renaissance, spurred by games like Settlers of Catan. Because users are rewarded for contributing content, the site has some real depth. In addition to exhaustive lists of games, sorted by rank (with Bayesian averages and standard deviation), there are a gajillion reviews and player aids. You can even search for games based on criteria such as weight, game mechanism, ranking, or even game mechanics. The site is a great example of organically-generated user data. posted by craniac at 7:46 AM PST - 36 comments
The Other Iraq:"The Government and the peoples of Kurdistan invite you to discover their peaceful region, a place that has practiced democracy for over a decade, a place where the universities, markets, cafes and fair grounds buzz with progress and prosperity and where the people are already sowing the seeds of a brighter future." via Sterling posted by signal at 7:16 AM PST - 33 comments
Adel is innocent. I don't mean he claims to be. I mean the military says so. It held a secret tribunal and ruled that he is not al Qaeda, not Taliban, not a terrorist. The whole thing was a mistake: The Pentagon paid $5,000 to a bounty hunter, and it got taken. The military people reached this conclusion, and they wrote it down on a memo, and then they classified the memo and Adel went from the hearing room back to his prison cell. He is a prisoner today, eight months later. posted by dash_slot- at 2:21 PM PST - 46 comments
HELLBENT - The first gay slasher movie. Taking place at the famed West Hollywood Halloween Carnival, there is a serial killer on the loose. A group of four gay friends will have to fight for their lives to make it through a night where flamboyant costumes, beautiful people, drugs, music, dancing and sex are everywhere. Trailer (quicktime, NOT SAFE FOR WORK). The soundtrack looks pretty good. posted by Captaintripps at 12:39 PM PST - 65 comments
"I know these desires could kill me dead, but how you gonna act instead?" So sings eros-haunted Delta-blues-steeped songwriter Chris Whitley on his superbly dark new album, Soft Dangerous Shores, and he's not kidding -- Whitley is currently "very very ill" and receiving hospice care. After Whitley's 1991 debut, Living with the Law, the slim (drug-addicted?) songwriter was acclaimed by his peers as "the real deal." When he was dropped by Sony in 1998, he released an album of stark poetic beauty recorded in a barn, Dirt Floor. Soft Dangerous Shores updates Whitley's coiled-viper resophonic guitars with dreamlike electronic atmospheres (one reviewer describes it as "a hypnotic wrestling match between juke joint blues and Kraftwerkian beats"). Instead of posting an elegy for another underappreciated self-destructive genius a la Nick Drake after his death, check out Whitley's music (via free downloads) while he's still with us on Earth. posted by digaman at 9:42 AM PST - 46 comments
Angkor Wat guide. "Published in 1944 in Saigon, republished in 1948 and again in Paris in 1963, The Monuments of the Angkor Group by Maurice Glaize remains the most comprehensive of the guidebooks and the most easily accessible to a wide public, dedicated to one of the most fabled architectural ensembles in the world." Now online, updated, with maps and photos. (More Angkor Wat links in this previous post.) Via Plep. posted by languagehat at 9:20 AM PST - 12 comments
Google Analytics Yesterday evening Google released Google Analytics - a free Google-hosted web tracking and measurement tool, based on Urchin (which Google purchased earlier this year). Can't see Microsoft or eBay using the service, and I found it rather slow to use, but worth giving it a try... posted by runkelfinker at 8:43 AM PST - 38 comments
Sound 101 Fingernails scraping down a blackboard... the scream of a baby... your neighbour's dog barking: what is the worst sound in the world? This is what this website is trying to find out.
Acoustic science is concerned with the production, transmission, manipulation and reception of sound, from unwanted traffic noise to beautiful music. Acoustics is about both the physical properties of sound waves and the reaction of humans. This website is interested in the often complex ways in which people perceive and interpret sounds. The aim is to increase awareness of sound psychology by examining what makes a sound unpleasant to hear. Your votes on the site will also give us an insight into what is the worst sound in the world, and maybe why it is the worst sound. posted by Ugandan Discussions at 4:52 AM PST - 42 comments
10 years. Though I already went on and on about this on another thread, I can't shake it: Ken Saro-Wiwa was hanged ten years ago. All he did was point out that Shell so scarred, pitted and slimed his tribal Ogoni lands that it was spontaneously catching fire. Oil company cronies showed up with guns, cleared villages. And then Nigerian government officials got pissed, and nine Ogoni were hanged. Wiki. Testimony of his brother. His foundation. posted by toma at 4:18 AM PST - 14 comments
Here's an interesting series of scale/perspective images showing what all the water on Earth (1.4087 billion cubic kilometres of it), including sea water, ice, lakes, rivers, ground water, clouds, etc. would look like in comparison to the total spherical area of the Earth, and then again showing All the air in the atmosphere (5140 trillion tonnes of it) gathered into a ball at sea-level density. Both illustrations shown on the same scale as the Earth. via posted by jonson at 10:30 PM PST - 36 comments
Memory - 36 cards. Turn two over. If the pictures match, both get eliminated. Else turn them back and select another two. Repeat till field is cleared. Post the number of moves you took. [via] posted by Gyan at 9:40 PM PST - 77 comments
Operation Barbarella - from the London Review of Books, a review of Jane Fonda’s War: A Political Biography of an Anti-war Icon by Mary Hershberger.
So, what is the story behind Jane Fonda? You will find few people so reviled among macho warrior types. Back in the Depressingly Christian Private School (DCPS) that I went to, to hear some of the things she had been accused of you'd have thought she was the Whore of Babylon herself.
The truly interesting thing about this article isn't the discussion of the reality of Fonda's anti-war protesting measured against the myth, but as an illustration of the kind of pass-it-along info, whose truth is a matter of almost-scriptural faith, that serves as the conventional wisdom concerning the Left in the ill-educated backwaters that compose so much of our nation. This kind of thing is the political equivilent of the story of the midget who hanged himself on the set of The Wizard of Oz.
Additional reading: the Snopes page on Jane Fonda. Via Linkfilter. posted by JHarris at 8:49 PM PST - 34 comments
Overheard in New York: A site so complex, so subtle and deceptive, that its site address couldn't possibly tell you all you need to know about the site's content. posted by shmegegge at 3:33 PM PST - 60 comments
Is Kevin Bacon living near you? I just watched Bacon's amazing performance as a paedophile returning home after 12 years inside, where the public accessibility of the Sex Offenders Register brought about by (amongst other things) Megan's Law is a plot-point. mapsexoffenders.com is a google maps powered site which enables you to see just who is living on your block, and what they did to end up being tracked for life, even after paying their debt to society. Is this information just becoming too easily accessible - is it making the chances of lumpheaded reprisals too high? posted by benzo8 at 10:44 AM PST - 100 comments
For many of us of a certain age, The Who in Cincinnati was the defining moment in uncontrolled concert crowds. Those a little younger may only know of this tragedy.
Don't bother creating a helpful site to log crowd complaints--these guys have already done it (complete with cartoonish graphics). If you like your crowd control info framed, try this site. posted by Kibbutz at 9:05 AM PST - 29 comments
The nkondi are the most powerful of the nkisi. They were used to identify and hunt down unknown
wrongdoers such as thieves, and people who were believed to cause sickness or death by occult means.
They were also used to punish people who swore false oaths and villages which broke treaties. To inspire
the nkondi to action, it was both invoked and provoked. Invocations, in bloodthirsty language, encouraged
it to punish the guilty party. It would also be provoked by having gunpowder exploded in front of it, and
having nails hammered into it. These fantastic Congo nail fetish figures are just one small, wonderful part of the impressive collection of images you can view at the content-rich, gratifyingly obsessive Rand African Art, a site stuffed with nice large photos, lots of lovely, lovely links, and all sorts of intriguing nooks and crannies inviting exploration. posted by taz at 4:28 AM PST - 14 comments
The Buddha's daughter "There is, religiously speaking, no reason that Renji should attract devotion. Her father's position as an incarnation of the Buddha is not hereditary. Nevertheless, large numbers of Tibetans treat her as an object of reverence in her own right." posted by dhruva at 11:17 PM PST - 34 comments
Peter Drucker; the Prince of Management, dead at 95. He was a visionary leader to many. I tried to look up some opposing views and could not readily find any. Peace out. posted by Mr T at 10:40 PM PST - 22 comments
ASPO-USA Denver Conference Report. Views on Peak Oil from a wide range of panelists in Colorado this week, including the mayor of Denver "who has joined that brave but small band of honest and courageous politicians willing to go anywhere near the issue of peak oil". posted by stbalbach at 10:29 PM PST - 16 comments
After the first time I flew on an upgraded ticket, I wondered why some airline didn't just make slightly more expensive tickets on a plane filled with fewer, roomier seats for those that crave comfort (basically, all business class). Well, it looks like someone has at Eos Airlines. The seating arrangements look fantastic, going from roomy seat area to flat bed to double table with two seats (for a coworker), with privacy and aisle access for all. Unfortunately "slightly more expensive" is pretty high at $5k for NYC to London, though that's cheaper than major airlines. Business Week has the full story on this new venture. posted by mathowie at 7:08 PM PST - 47 comments
The Brasher Doubloon has been called "the single most important coin in American numismatics." Struck in 1787 by George Washington's neighbor Ephraim Brasher, it's believed to be the first gold coin made in the United States. Seven of Brasher's 1787 doubloons are in existence, each with the initials EB stamped on an eagle; the one that gets title-case capitalization is the only one where the intitials are stamped on the eagle's breast instead of its wing [hi-res pics: front, back]. In January 2005, it was sold at auction for $2.9 million. It's now on a tour of the United States (and insured for $6 million). In Raymond Chandler's 1942 novel The High Window and the 1947 film adaptation The Brasher Doubloon, Philip Marlowe investigates the theft of the doubloon. posted by goatdog at 2:35 PM PST - 9 comments
Explore our local chunk of space. Here is a scale view of the Solar System, and here one can take a quick trip around it. Use the guidebook to plan your trip (but beware the pop-up ads). Don't forget to bring a camera and snap some photos. posted by dazed_one at 1:10 PM PST - 12 comments
Sony steps in it again. In the midst of the uproar about the Sony rootkit previously mentioned here, J. Alex Haldeman found a second sneaky piece of work in Sony CD's. It's pretty clear now that the only safe way to listen to music from Sony is to steal it. [via] posted by pjern at 12:48 PM PST - 72 comments
Intelligent Evolution ...Today we live in a less barbaric age,[than the age of Copernicus and Bruno] but an otherwise comparable disjunction between science and religion, the one born of Darwinism, still roils the public mind. Why does such intense and pervasive resistance to evolution continue 150 years after the publication of The Origin of Species, and in the teeth of the overwhelming accumulated evidence favoring it? The answer is simply that the Darwinian revolution, even more than the Copernican revolution, challenges the prehistoric and still-regnant self-image of humanity. Evolution by natural selection, to be as concise as possible, has changed everything... posted by Postroad at 10:05 AM PST - 75 comments
What's That? Sadly, the education of the youth of amerika is declining in more than one way. The other day I was at the grocery store and the checker was unable to identify a portabello mushroom. And no, she wasn't new...and to make matters worse the checker next to her didn't know either. (more inside) posted by MiHail at 9:25 AM PST - 1025 comments
The London Cage. Kensington Palace Gardens is one of the most exclusive addresses in the world. Between July 1940 and September 1948 three magnificent houses there were home to one of Great Britain'smost secret military establishments: the London office of the Combined Services Detailed Interrogation Centre, known colloquially as the London Cage. It was run by MI19, the section of the War Office responsible for gleaning information from enemy prisoners of war, and few outside this organisation knew exactly what went on beyond the single barbed-wire fence that separated the three houses from the busy streets and grand parks of west London. The London Cage was used partly as a torture centre, inside which large numbers of German officers and soldiers were subjected to systematic ill-treatment. In total 3,573 men passed through the Cage, and more than 1,000 were persuaded to give statements about war crimes. A number of German civilians joined the servicemen who were interrogated there up to 1948. More inside. posted by matteo at 8:16 AM PST - 12 comments
"Every important marker of her life had to do with clubbing. She wore her first bra to a club. She went out without a bra for the first time to a club. Her first kiss, her first crush on a gay guy, the first time she saw Jimmy Choo sandals, the first time someone passed her a joint." A preview of the high literary talent that is Nicole Richie. (Is it eligible?) posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:31 AM PST - 49 comments
Not a particularly interesting person? Perhaps you'd be more interesting if you had been attacked by pygmies, or survived a fall from a 19 story building. But who has the time to actually HAVE crazy life threatening accidents. Now, you no longer need to. posted by jonson at 11:01 PM PST - 29 comments
"Brownie's doing a hell of a job"... Part 2? Who is: The "well-connected, ideological, ambitious Republican with zero public health management or medical expertise whose previous job was as a corporate lawyer for Amtrak" who is in charge of the United States' planning for a possible influenza pandemic? A man who recently told a Congressional committee "We're learning as we go"? Meet Stewart Simonson. posted by docgonzo at 4:37 PM PST - 20 comments
"The Car Music Project was conceived in late 1991 by composer Bill Milbrodt, when his personal car, battered and road-weary, was nearing the end of its useful life. It had endured close to 200,000 miles of road life with little mechanical maintenance and even less cosmetic attention. It would cost more to repair than it was worth and the poor thing had virtually no value as a trade-in. The paint was faded, pesky springs poked through the upholstery, knobs and handles were missing, and the electrical system was iffy. It dripped oil, blew smoke, and made more noise than a cement mixer. It was time to turn the car into music." posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:36 PM PST - 8 comments
Arrested Development Gets The AxThere was no official announcement -- there rarely is when the networks wield the ax -- but after two and a half wonderfully funny seasons, Fox's Emmy-winning "Arrested Development' is dead. It's not like no one saw this coming, but who the hell are all the people watching Nanny 911 and So You Think You Can Dance instead of the best show on TV? posted by TunnelArmr at 4:19 PM PST - 203 comments
Significance of numbers. Not to be confused with the concept of "significant figures," this page lists the significance of numbers 0 through 1000.
See! "2 is the only even prime."
Hear! "24 is the largest number divisible by all numbers less than its square root."
Thrill! "3367 is the smallest number which can be written as the difference of 2 cubes in 3 ways." Whoa! posted by scarabic at 2:09 PM PST - 43 comments
Teen Mayor! Eighteen year old Michael Sessions can't buy or drink alcohol but he has been elected the mayor of his hometown of Hillsdale, Michigan. He won the office by two votes, which he's credited to his parents for putting him over the top.
His reason for running? Eight races in his town were being run unopposed and he didn't think that was right so he tried to run but was underage at the time. So he ran as a write-in. And won, pending a recount.
It will certainly be an interesting senior year of high school for him. posted by fenriq at 1:45 PM PST - 27 comments
Pool Hustler. Long an American
icon, pool hustlers have all but disappeared.
They enjoyed a brief resurgence in the 60’s when pool became popular
again, thanks to “The Hustler”. Interest waned through the 70’s, until
Newman and Cruise made hustling cool again in “The Color of Money”. Is pool,
and by extension hustling, due for a new renaissance? posted by cosmicbandito at 10:22 AM PST - 46 comments
I dont know about you but I dont think enough has been said about Ska. Sure, theres guys like Reel Big Fish and Sublime who try to claim the bragging rights for making Ska what it is today, however, many people dont know the real origins of this movement. More inside: posted by wheelieman at 9:47 AM PST - 71 comments
Wahhabi U. A top U.S. diplomat recently revealed Saudi Arabia still teaches students to hate non-Muslims and the West. So why are we making it easier for Saudi students schooled in that hatred to visit the U.S.? posted by Postroad at 7:56 AM PST - 24 comments
Marine's Final Salute to fallen comrades Very emotional piece by the Rocky Mountain News where they shadow'ed a Marine that is responsible for notifying next-of-kin. Seeing as today is Veteran's Day, how 'bout we salute our men and women in uniform ... and leave the political discussions for other forums. posted by RonZ at 7:49 AM PST - 42 comments
It's Friday. It's early. You beat your coworkers into the office. Now for some fun go load up the Office Poltergeist server onto their machines, note their IP address, and wait a few hours. Later today you can send text to their screen, send sounds, move their windows slightly, and open their CD tray. If you're careful, you can probably keep pranking someone for hours using this. [via MeFi Projects] posted by mathowie at 5:43 AM PST - 26 comments
Be mesmirised by a very complex .gif involving blue balls in a machine. Then, when you've had enough, check out this rather silly but also tragic accompaniment. posted by Lotto at 5:41 AM PST - 21 comments
Lethal Beauty is a seven-part series by the San Francisco Chronicle about the Golden Gate Bridge and its history of suicides. The articles present both sides of the argument regarding a barrier which would stop such tragedies. The presentation includes graphic representations of suicides by location, a timeline and podcasts from survivors & relatives, among others. posted by Masi at 3:26 AM PST - 13 comments
Loose change A one hour analysis of 9/11 and how it is more likely than not that the government was actually behind the attacks. A documentary analyzing the footage and presenting an alternative view to the official version. posted by zeerobots at 12:35 AM PST - 115 comments
The teaser trailer has just appeared online for Darren Aronofsky's first movie since 2000, and only his third overall. It's the result of an incredibly tumultous Gilliam-style gestation period that included a large budget being greenlighted with Brad Pitt in the starring role, Brad Pitt dropping out of the project to film Troy with Wolfgang Petersen, sets being destroyed, the project being cancelled, the crew members writing a public tirade deriding his desertion that concludes with the "Send the word.... Brad is a dick.", and, finally, a movie (still being edited) that was re-written to be filmed for half the budget with Hugh Jackman as the star in Mr. Pitt's place. Script reviews and early looks indicate it may be one of the most ambitious studio releases in recent memory. Even if it doesn't entirely succeed, isn't this a good thing for films in general? posted by setanor at 10:29 PM PST - 64 comments
Clearman's Steak n' Stein Inn is a throw-back to a creepier, more velvety time. Anyone living in the Valley is no doubt familiar with the commercial for this Pico Rivera staple, with its Joe Jackson-worthy kinda kute waitresses and stately, Wagnerian score. There're lots (and lots and lots) of people obsessed with old diners, but I have to ask myself: who represents online for the creepy old steak house contingent? posted by ford and the prefects at 9:34 PM PST - 28 comments
The White Diamond was one of three documentaries released in theaters this year (in the U.S.) by legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog (the others being the more widely seen Grizzly Man, about a man who studied bears in Alaska, and Wheel of Time, about the practices and rituals of devout Buddhists). In The White Diamond, Herzog introduces us to Dr. Graham Dorrington, a professor of aeronautics who is obsessed with weightless, floating flight, and who is testing the design of a new airship in a large hangar outside of London. Herzog and Dorrington travel to the rainforest of Guyana, where Dorrington hopes to fly the small dirigible over the jungle’s canopy and study the innumerable plants and animals living there with the hopes of finding new species and potentially discovering plants with pharmaceutical and healing benefits – a practice he calls “canopy prospecting”. [more inside] posted by billysumday at 3:43 PM PST - 14 comments
Fallen Art (16mb avi) is the second movie directed by Tomek Baginski, following his Oscar nominated "The Cathedral..." This short animated movie has been made by a group of people for whom the army has always been an unfulfilled dream. (more info) posted by crunchland at 1:24 PM PST - 8 comments
Welcome to Idiot America: "The America of Franklin and Edison, of Fulton and Ford, of the Manhattan project and the Apollo program, the America of which Einstein wanted to be a part, seems to be enveloping itself in a curious fog behind which it's tying itself in knots over evolution, for pity's sake, and over the relative humanity of blastocysts versus the victims of Parkinson's disease." posted by bitmage at 10:41 AM PST - 57 comments
Explosions in three hotels in Amman, Jordan kill at least 57 people. Authorities suspect suicide bombers. The Grand Hyatt Hotel, the Radisson SAS Hotel, and the Days Inn were involved in the bombings; most of the deaths were focused at a wedding reception where a man allegedly entered into the crowd with eplosives strapped to his body. Arrests have been made, and the government is asking anyone who filmed the bombings to give the government a copy. An al-qaeda website has taken responsibility, stating "A group of our best lions launched a new attack on some dens ..." posted by Dean Keaton at 7:35 AM PST - 25 comments
'Torture is prohibited by law throughout the United States. It is categorically denounced as a matter of policy and as a tool of state authority. Every act constituting torture under the Convention constitutes a criminal offense under the law of the United States. No official of the government, federal, state or local, civilian or military, is authorized to commit or to instruct anyone else to commit torture. Nor may any official condone or tolerate torture in any form. No exceptional circumstances may be invoked as a justification of torture. US law contains no provision permitting otherwise prohibited acts of torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment to be employed on grounds of exigent circumstances (for example, during a ‘state of public emergency’) or on orders from a superior officer or public authority, and the protective mechanisms of an independent judiciary are not subject to suspension.’ (Report of the United States to the UN Committee against Torture, October 15, 1999, UN Doc. CAT/C/28/Add.5, February 9, 2000, para. 6.) posted by alms at 8:57 PM PST - 59 comments
American Christianity has distorted the gospel and become spiritually bankrupt. ... “Regardless of what the New Testament says, most Christians are materialists with no experience of the Spirit. Regardless of what the New Testament says, most Christians are individualists with no real experience of community.” He paused for a moment and then continued: “Let’s pretend that you were all Christians. If you were Christians, you would no longer accumulate. You would share everything you had. You would actually love one another. And you would treat each other as if you were family.” His eyes were piercing as he asked, “Why don’t you do that? Why don’t you live that way?” posted by publius at 6:51 PM PST - 95 comments
Tax and Spend Conservatives.President George W. Bush and the current administration have now borrowed more money from foreign governments and banks than the previous 42 U.S. presidents combined. Wow. posted by caddis at 6:17 PM PST - 42 comments
She interviewed Mussolini. She wrote plays for Eugene O'Neill's Provincetown Players. She got letters from Trotsky. Freud and Helen Keller were in her address book. She married journalist John Reed, and Diane Keaton played her in Reds. And she was nearly forgotten. Now, Louise Bryant is remembered. More here and much more here. posted by digaman at 3:55 PM PST - 4 comments
A filmmaker and festival director goes on a morning news show to promote his local theater and a traveling flim festival. Totally routine interview until - d'oh! A good reason not to go on tv when you're either super nervous or hungover (Quicktime movie). (via) posted by billysumday at 3:30 PM PST - 34 comments
Has the C.I.A. legally killed prisoners?Two years ago, Manadel al-Jamadi, a suspected Iraqi insurgent, walked into a Baghdad interrogation room. He was dead in 45 minutes, his head covered with a plastic bag, shackled in a crucifixion-like pose that led to his asphyxiation. U.S. authorities classified his death a homicide. His CIA interrogator has not been charged with a crime and continues to work for the agency.
President Bush says "We do not torture." But if that’s true, then why is Vice President Cheney fighting to exempt CIA interrogators from a torture ban?
And al-Jamadi? His case is stalled in the Alberto Gonzalez Justice Department, two years after soldiers posed for thumbs-up pictures next to his corpse. posted by sacre_bleu at 10:59 AM PST - 49 comments
The grammatically poor 1 days linkfarm starts us off so quickly, on to 2 days of Japanese gadgets. 3 days, then 4 days and 5 days too are just farming links, while 6 days does so with the additon (allegedly) of AdorableCats. 7 days is farming too (but no cats) and The Beatles' 8 Days A Week is co-opted to a copy shop. 9 days will sell your house in 7 days (and keep 2 for their commission, I guess). Circumspection is the name of the game at 10 days and 11 days is back to farming links. 12 Days of Christmas, of course. Unluckily, 13 days is another farm... Gwen offers you 14 days of laminate samples for your library walls. 15 days is a link farm again. 16 Days Design "reserves the right to refuse service to anyone". It might take 17 days to look through Jenny's galleries, but much less than 18 days to realise this is just another link farm. There's "no website configured at [19 days]" - you sure? 20 days - links. You can earn $100,00 in a year - so that's $5,753.42 in 21 days. Try MobZilla for 14 days at 22 days (and do what for the other 8?) 81% of investors fall into The Three Most Dangerous Pitfalls because they didn't spend 23 days checking things out. (24 days is coming soon.) The AlphabetAcademy teaches you one letter a day... for 25 days - which one gets the chop I wonder? You can sell your home in 26 days or get $2,600!!! 27 days is back to linkfarming. In 28 days you might be on Reality TV. Want 29 days of "Internal Cleansing" with Blessed Herbs? NetSol aren't above 30 days of links. And finally, 31 days later, everything stops... posted by benzo8 at 9:36 AM PST - 39 comments
Blair loses in the Commons for the first time since his election in 1997. MPs refused to pass laws allowing terrorist suspects to be jailed without trial for 90 days, and Blair's parliamentary majority of 66 turned into a minority of 31. The government has been holding back on the vote for months in an attempt to persuade their party to back the Prime Minister - they failed. posted by Pretty_Generic at 9:19 AM PST - 38 comments
Who Is Lying About Iraq? A (thorough) editorial from CommentaryMagazine by Norman Podhoretz examining the case for war, the allegations of Bush administration deceit, the yellowcake incident, Democratic party claims and backtracking, and Plamegate. Obviously partisan, obviously biased, but I've never seen such a clearly laid out rebuttal with citations of many of the allegations made against the Bush administration with respect to Iraq. posted by loquax at 9:06 AM PST - 102 comments
More than a BMX - The StreetSurfer is a patented pedal-driven vehicle (think BMX) that you ride like a surfboard in an urban setting. It consists of a normal bike frame, a rear wheel (duh) and four mini wheels on the front. These littler front wheels apparently track the surface of the ground better than a traditional bicycle and therefore give the rider a smoother, more controlled ride. More info via the StreetSurfer's awfully designed website (ugly Flash warning), although there's two chunky videos to download that also help to explain the product in further detail. Via Beyond Tomorrow. … posted by sjvilla79 at 3:55 AM PST - 48 comments
This story made me wonder a bit. I'd never thought to wonder where all those old toilets disappear to. Maybe some lost tribes are out there right now hunting with the remnants of these devices, which seem to have a rich history. Disclaimer. posted by IronLizard at 5:57 PM PST - 16 comments
Flying Spagetti Monster expelled from Kansas The Kansas School Board has decided that it knows much more about the origins of life than the combined intelligence of all the scientists on the planet, and that fiction can be taught as fact. But seriously, if you don't even understand the scientific method, what business do you have setting academic policy? posted by gallois at 5:37 PM PST - 187 comments
And if you think they got some wrong or missed the boat entirely, let 'em know. I, for one, wholeheartedly agree with #1, though I'm sure some of you will not. posted by fenriq at 4:49 PM PST - 98 comments
Colbert Nation, the Stephen Colbert "fan site". Definitely read Stephen Colbert fan-fiction, the highlight of which is the Middle-Earth fan-fic. It's a parody of a fan site, apparently written and updated by the Colbert Report's graphic designer. It doesn't matter though, even though my cool side cringes at laughing so hard at something with a marketing budget. Pepsi Blue my ass, Colbert's funnier than I thought. posted by geoff. at 1:53 PM PST - 55 comments
In 1844, Charles Goodyear invented vulcanized rubber. In 1845, Robert William Thomson invented and patented the first vulcanized pneumatic tire, although his design was too costly to be practical. John Dunlop patented his own design for pneumatic bicycle tires in 1888, and this design was less expensive to produce than Thomson’s, and was widely adopted. André Michelin attempted to make the first pneumatic automobile tire in 1895. Although his initial design was not successful, he persevered, and the company he formed with his brother Edouard flourished. And although the tire has continued to evolve, its basic form -- that of a torus filled with pressurized air -- has remained unchanged for 160 years.
While pneumatic tires provide a ride that is both comfortable and safe, the fact that they are filled with air creates some obvious problems. But what if you could make a tire that had the ride characteristics of a pneumatic but was not, strictly speaking, a pneumatic tire? In an interesting attempt to "reinvent the wheel," Michelin has developed an airless tire they are calling the "Tweel". This press release has the standard yadda yadda you would expect with any new product announcement, but these pictures on a third party site demonstrate what a radical idea the "tire without air" really is.
> posted by mosk at 12:16 PM PST - 37 comments
Play RISK using Google Maps. From the FAQ: For some reason I decided a bit after the API for Google Maps came out that it would be awesome to be able to play Risk on it... I've always been a gamer and thought this was the perfect step. posted by KevinSkomsvold at 7:30 AM PST - 37 comments
Charlie Kelly's Website.Between 1979 and 1983 I was part of the first company to make nothing but off-road bicycles when I joined forces with my former roommate, Gary Fisher, and a frambuilder named Tom Ritchey. Meet Charlie Kelly, Mountain Bike Hall of Famer and one of those who was there in the mid-1970s, astride a converted Schwinn atop Marin County's Mount Tam, founding the sport known today as mountain biking.[via] posted by RockyChrysler at 8:27 PM PST - 7 comments
Grokster shuts down after their Supreme Court defeat [pdf] this summer, Grokster has chosen to settle its case with MGM et al., admit to wrongdoing, and stop distributing its software. Their website now displays the message: "There are legal services for downloading music and movies.
This service is not one of them.".
Another victoy for Hollywood in the intellectual property war. Who's next? posted by falconred at 2:26 PM PST - 32 comments
Burnt Church, the Opera - When I was a kid some of my greatest literary influences were "Quadrophenia", "The Wall", "Tommy", and "Jesus Christ Superstar". And did I mention "Quadrophenia"? Jeff Parker and Paul Roessler have put online their entire Floyd-esque concept album "Burnt Church" (complete with groovy Flash bits) and they are encouraging people to download for free. Check it! posted by nromanek at 11:08 AM PST - 6 comments
Dahlia Lithwick in Slate urges Democrats to grow a spine, and use the Alito hearings to provide the American public with some liberal talking points for a change.
"If the Scalias, Thomases, Alitos, and Borks of the world had their way ... there would be no meaningful gun control. States could have official churches. Hard-fought federal worker, environmental, and civil rights protections would disintegrate. What you currently think of as the right to privacy would disappear. These are the questions Senate Democrats need to ask of Sam Alito: Should property rights trump individual rights? Should the right to privacy be interpreted as narrowly as the framers might have intended? Do you believe that a return to the morals and mores of two centuries ago is in the best interest of this nation?" posted by snoktruix at 9:15 AM PST - 76 comments
Factbites is a new approach to web searching - the results make sense! Factbites offers users meaningful, relevant sentences from every site in the search results. For example, durian. posted by crunchland at 8:38 AM PST - 19 comments
eBaum's World Sucks."For a long time ebaumsworld.com has been stealing content and rebranding it from Something Awful and many other sites on the Internet. Everyone is used to having their content moved around on the net, but Eric Bauman obscures any references to the creator in favor of slapping his branding everywhere. And he's gotten rich doing it."
85% of college students now use Facebook. With such popularity schools such as MU are examing Facebook usage and "a few students have been turned in for content that violates the conduct code." The phone-directory-on-steroids even attracts employers, "Linda Kaiser ... spoke with two people — an employer and a parent — who used Facebook to screen candidates for employment." Oh and for the Greeks the Facebook is creating problems of its own. posted by geoff. at 7:29 AM PST - 50 comments
Nebraska has the only unicameral, non-partisan legislature in the United States. Created by constitutional amendment in 1935, Nebraska's legislature gained brief influence as a model of legislative politics after the "one man, one vote" Supreme Court rulings in the mid-60s. Many states had not reapportioned their districts for years, creating an imbalance in state and national legislative politics. The Supreme Court ruling which sparked the brief campaign for unicameral legislatures. posted by Captaintripps at 4:56 AM PST - 31 comments
Ye Olde Graphics Shoppe.We hope you will find something here to your liking. You will notice some changes and additions and a new look. We have decided to simplify things rather than have nonsense pages.....too many really :-)) We have a NEW Graphics Assistant Lady Belle ho has added some terrific new dusting graphics and page sets for you to enjoy. posted by Count Ziggurat at 7:07 PM PST - 46 comments
Mana "China" Nishiura, drummer for Shonen Knife & DMBQ, died on Friday afternoon. "It is with a deep sadness in my heart, that I must announce the passing of Mana "China" Nishiura. She was tragically killed in a three-vehicle accident near the Delaware Memorial Bridge yesterday (November 4) shortly before 1 p.m., after the Econoline van carrying her band, DMBQ, had crossed the bridge from New Jersey near Carneys Point in Salem County. A Mitsubishi Eclipse clipped the van's left rear fender. The van spun out of control, and careened over a barrier on the ramp to Route 40. Mana was ejected from the van and she died at the scene." A bit more about Shonen Knife. posted by jenleigh at 1:46 PM PST - 48 comments
Pay Up, Cheaters! The Story of the Beat Farmers (QT trailer for as-yet unreleased DVD, Jamie Dawson, director)
Pour yourself a shot of Jäger and gather round the campfire, boys and girls, it's time for testifyin'. Tonight I present the cautionary tale of a big, kind-hearted stink-ape of a man, Country Dick Montana, who spent his short life as the Master of Ceremonies for a neverending party. He played drums, guitar and sang in The Beat Farmers, a legendary Southern California roots rock (embedded RealVideo) band proud of its fans' ability to make bar cash registers explode. Too country for rock radio, too rock for country radio, they could fill any showroom, but their only airplay outside San Diego consisted of ditties (embedded RealVideo) played by Dr. Demento; not exactly the recognition one would hope to receive. [more inside] posted by planetkyoto at 9:41 AM PST - 27 comments
Neil Diamond on MySpace "I sang Cracklin Rosie at Kareoke last week and was then inited[sic] to a threesome. Thanks Neil. Your songs are magical." Neil Diamond has 9981 friends. posted by srboisvert at 4:34 AM PST - 44 comments
The origin of life?! I heard from an authority in molecular biology today that a group of researchers funded by the Carnegie Institution and NASA believe they've discovered the origin of RNA, and with that, the origin of life.
This new discovery grew out of NASA's Deep Impact mission to study the composition of comets. Specifically, they started investigating a kind of carbon that forms in layers, with each layer slighly offset from the previous one in a helix shape. Significantly, the thickness of these carbon layers corresponds with the thickness of each twist in a strand of RNA.
It turns out that the individual building blocks of RNA are capable of bonding to this layered carbon when exposed to UV radiation. Once this has happened, apparently formaldehyde can then bond to the building blocks of RNA on the carbon "pattern", allowing the bonded RNA to slough off into the primordial soup. Over time, some of these RNA strands could fold and bond to themselves, forming DNA. Formaldehyde, the initial bonding material, would eventually be replaced by a more chemically sophisticated substance, creating the chemical bond that we observe today in DNA.
Expect a paper on it to be released in approximately three months with all the details. posted by insomnia_lj at 3:53 AM PST - 66 comments
Newsfilter: The NYTimes is reporting that the Democrats forced Congress into a closed session last week (previous MeFi discussion here) because of a recently declassified memo citing concerns by intelligence agencies over the source of information used to justify the Iraq war. Turns out the White House had been informed their source couldn't be trusted to tell the truth and were probably fabricating evidence. Knowing this, the Bush administration still presented the stories as absolute truth. The memo was apparently ignored. Of course, the administration has ignored important memos before. This new evidence probably invalidates the conclusions (pdf) drawn by the Senate Intelligence Committee Report on the Intelligence Community's pre-war work on Iraq. posted by zarq at 8:33 PM PST - 70 comments
The Swing Years And Beyond is on in a matter of minutes. Five hours of swing, lounge, big band jazz and rhythm 'n blues is streamed live for five hours from 7 PM to 12 Midnight Pacific Standard Time every Saturday night. Streamed live but not archived, alas. But enjoy, you who tune in tonight. You who do not, bookmark this thread and tune in next Saturday. It's a great program. posted by y2karl at 6:54 PM PST - 24 comments
things to do when you are bored Have a "Who is less competitive" competition
wonder (Amusement Potential: 1-3 minutes)
Trying to win at this will make you lose. Trying to lose makes you win which makes you lose. Not trying at all makes you lose which makes you win which makes you lose. posted by elemenopee at 4:57 PM PST - 41 comments
Albert Brooks is set to release a movie called Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World . No doubt we'll be hearing more on that, but let us reserve judgement.
Meanwhile, for those who need persuading, here are some links concerning 13th century sufi
and funny man Nasruddin .
His people are understandably proud and you can find a lot more of his stuff, probably better than what I've put up.
(This post prompted in part by Rumi post earlier today- for those who might be put off by the current trendiness of that most excellent poet.)
Enjoy. posted by IndigoJones at 4:33 PM PST - 26 comments
When Henri met Pablo. Wandering through the rue des Martyrs in 1908, Picasso stopped beside an upholstery shop. "A head peered out, the face of a woman, hard eyes, a penetrating look, decisiveness and clarity. The canvas was huge. I enquired about the price. 'A hundred sous,' replied the dealer. 'You can paint over it.' It was one of the truest portraits ever of the French psyche."
HenriRousseau's five-franc, life-size woman in Van Dyck black stayed at Picasso's side until his death, longer than any flesh-and-blood muse. A century later, she towers over us at Tate Modern's Rousseau retrospective as imperiously as a Velázquez monarch. More inside. posted by matteo at 11:17 AM PST - 21 comments
Why Paris Is Burning Officially, the French state doesn't recognize minorities, only citizens of France, all of them equal under the law. But that republican ideal has seemed especially hollow over the past week as the children of impoverished, largely Muslim immigrants from the Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa fought running battles with police throughout the banlieues, or suburbs, to the east and north of the French capital... posted by Postroad at 10:20 AM PST - 199 comments
The free spirit of Islam : The popularity in the US of Rumi, a 13th-century Turkish poet, is a tragic irony, as the order of Sufi dervishes he founded is banned at home, via The Guardian. Rumi's brand of Sufism represents "the free spirit of Islam ... the liberal spirit that I think needs to be recognised at a time when Islam has come to be considered almost synonymous with terrorism" Here aresomeadditionallinks. posted by adamvasco at 9:26 AM PST - 18 comments
Boundless energy or bad math?Randell Mills thinks he has the solution to our energy problems. In his company's patented process, "energy is released as the electrons of atomic hydrogen are induced to undergo transitions to lower energy levels producing plasma, light, and novel hydrogen compounds." It also implies that quantum mechanics is wrong. posted by Espoo2 at 6:04 AM PST - 73 comments
Body Worlds is an art exhibition that toured Europe from 2001-2003. Retooled for 'aught five, it has made its way to the New World for stays in Philadelphia and Toronto. The brainchild of Gunther von Hagens, a German anatomist, progenitor and patentee of the plastination technique of preservation, Body Worlds features actual human corpses: plastinated, dissected and posed. Nutjob? Artist? Criminal? von Hagens says his aims are primarily educational. Slate has an informative sideshow about the current exhibit, its origins and predecessors.
Criticisms of this work run the gamut from predictable outrage to marxist.
But if you're interested, you can request plastination services, or go to the man himself and donate your body(cool downloadable brochure on this page).
And, of course, what would a good exhibition be without a shop?
Previously discussed, the first time around, here, here, here,and here. Similar exhibit in San Francisco this past summer called "The Universe Within". Plastination is also apparently a musical phenomenon. posted by kosem at 11:27 PM PST - 69 comments
Decades of dumping chemical arms leave a risky legacy The Army now admits that it secretly dumped 64 million pounds of nerve and mustard agents into the sea, along with 400,000 chemical-filled bombs, land mines and rockets and more than 500 tons of radioactive waste - either tossed overboard or packed into the holds of scuttled vessels.
These weapons of mass destruction virtually ring the country, concealed off at least 11 states - six on the East Coast, two on the Gulf Coast, California, Hawaii and Alaska. Few, if any, state officials have been informed of their existence. posted by notmtwain at 7:51 PM PST - 33 comments
This Emma Brockes article/interview with Chomsky in the UK Guardian provokes this angry response and raises some awkward questions about right, wrong and the media. The Guardian itself has so far chosen not to lock horns, other than indirectly on its letters page. posted by Holly at 1:41 PM PST - 78 comments
Cheyney the Torturer? According to Dan Froomkin today, Lawrence Wilkerson (former chief of staff to the secretary of state) said that he had uncovered a "visible audit trail" tracing the practice of prisoner abuse by U.S. soldiers directly back to Vice President Cheney's office. posted by shiska at 12:27 PM PST - 52 comments
Puzzle Boat:Enjoy the island as long as you want. If you want to know where to go, try looking for some helpful individuals. Flag them down, and they'll not only show you the hottest spots on the island, but help you decide what to do next.
The Puzzle Boat is an online puzzle extravaganza, similar to the MIT Mystery Hunt or Microsoft Puzzle Hunts. It can be solved entirely online. posted by jacquilynne at 11:47 AM PST - 12 comments
Razzle Dazzle Camouflage
"During World War I, the British and Americans faced a serious threat from German U-boats, which were sinking allied shipping at a dangerous rate. All attempts to camouflage ships at sea had failed, as the appearance of the sea and sky are always changing. Any color scheme that was concealing in one situation was conspicuous in others. A British artist and naval officer, Norman Wilkinson, promoted a new camouflage scheme that was derived from the artistic fashions of the time, particularlycubism. Instead of trying to conceal the ship, it simply broke up its lines and made it more difficult for the U-boat captain to determine the ship's course. The British called this camouflage scheme 'Dazzle Painting.' The Americans called it 'Razzle Dazzle.'" posted by hall of robots at 11:03 AM PST - 31 comments
Sword swallowing uncertainties The sword passes within millimetres of the heart, aorta, and other vitals but, surprisingly, few deaths related to sword swallowing have been described. A Canadian sword swallower did die, but that was after swallowing an umbrella. posted by hank at 8:09 AM PST - 21 comments
Acid Round the Clock : stories. No, not stories about acid. (Or are they?)
"This isn't my fucking persona," he said, louder, more forcefully, turning over more tables as he headed for the door.
But instead of using the door when he got there, he jumped through the plate glass front window beside it, and, while he was still in midair, continued intoning, even louder, "And THIS isn't my fucking persona EITHER!"
posted by Drexen at 5:40 AM PST - 11 comments
... Dowd is extremely fond of clever stereotyping. But this strategy is better-suited to satirizing a real person (say, President Bush) than it is to offering insights into the already cartoonish "war" between the sexes. In Are Men Necessary? she gravitates toward quotes like this: "Deep down all men want the same thing: a virgin in a gingham dress," or "if there's one thing men fear it's a woman who uses her critical faculties..."
Her shallow insights are sometimes amusing in the context of 250 word op-ed, but a whole book, press junket and PR tour? The woman who suggests that oedipal conflict is at the root of current US foreign policy speaks out on feminism and culture, and we're supposed to care? Strangely enough, I do. I must be hypnotized by the red hair. posted by psmealey at 5:10 AM PST - 218 comments
Nature abhors a gradient. So I was reading about the latest developments in the Behe Panda trial and I came across a link to this way of thinking, in essence that the 2nd law of thermodynamics is the guiding force behind complexity (summarised here). Like any good scientific theory, they have a blog but can they explain the Tuatara, which seems a little lacking in contemporary gradient reduction? posted by Sparx at 4:09 AM PST - 33 comments
The first bear kill of the Maryland hunting season was made by an 8-year-old girl, notes Joel Achenbach's blog. It's quite an interesting news story that makes one wonder what values many of us are teaching our kids these days. Just as interesting, however, are the comments, which at least in one case deals with gender stereotyping:
I think that it is important for our kids and especially our girls to experience life and if part of life is killing game, then so be it. After all, if our girls just sit in their little bubble wearing pretty dresses and playing Bach on the piano, we may just end up with lots of Condi Rice's (re: Eugene Robinson's Op Ed).
The blog got lots of comments -- many more than my measly entry will. posted by PlanoTX at 11:15 PM PST - 69 comments
President Jimmy Carter’s national security adviser, Zbigniew Brzezinski, once asked of the Soviet defeat in Afghanistan: “What is most important to the history of
the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Muslims or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the Cold War?” Today, the Bush administration is implicitly arguing a similar point: that the establishment of a democratic Iraqi state is a project of overriding importance for the United States and the world, which in due course will eclipse memories of the
insurgency. But such a viewpoint minimizes the fact that the war in Iraq is already breeding a new generation of terrorists. The lesson of the decade of terror that
followed the Afghan war was that underestimating
the importance of blowback has severe consequences. Repeating the mistake in regard to Iraq could lead to
even deadlier outcomes...
A explicit Right to Privacy Amendment? Dan Savage asks: why can't we have one?--...Here we are, decades after Griswold, and social conservatives and liberals are constantly arguing about whether or not the right to privacy, which is a popular right (naturally enough), and one to which most Americans believe they're entitled, is actually a right to which Americans are entitled, constitutionally-speaking. ... It affects all aspects of our lives-- from sexuality to procreation to speech to property to employment to housing, so isn't it time? Europe has one, in the European Convention on Human Rights :Article 8-the right to respect for private and family life, home and correspondence. ...Article 8 offers general protection for a person’s private and family life, home and correspondence from arbitrary interference by the State. This right affects a large number of areas of life ranging from surveillance to sexual identity - it is framed extremely broadly. However, the right to respect for these aspects of privacy under Article 8 is qualified. ... posted by amberglow at 10:22 PM PST - 50 comments
"The wackos get their information through the Christian right" "The wackos get their information through the Christian right, Christian radio, mail, the internet and telephone trees," Scanlon wrote in the memo, which was read into the public record at a hearing of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. "Simply put, we want to bring out the wackos to vote against something and make sure the rest of the public lets the whole thing slip past them." - Mssrs. Scanlon and Abramoff betray GOP attitudes concerning the Republican base ? posted by troutfishing at 9:49 PM PST - 24 comments
Complete simple tasks that people do better than computers. And, get paid for it. In 1769, Hungarian nobleman Wolfgang von Kempelen astonished Europe by building a mechanical chess-playing automaton that defeated nearly every opponent it faced. A life-sized wooden mannequin, adorned with a fur-trimmed robe and a turban, Kempelen’s "Turk" was seated behind a cabinet and toured Europe confounding such brilliant challengers as Benjamin Franklin and Napoleon Bonaparte. Excuse me? Ah, yes. The Mechanical Turk, by Amazon. posted by nitsuj at 8:26 PM PST - 37 comments
Nice Beer Ad from Down Under a 1000 Auzzies in gowns crossing over the sheep strewn plains of Australia.
Ahh..foreign ads..perhaps this indeed the next form of cultural worms? I can see those soulless bastards on Madison Ave.."Yes..lets push hard on the foreign angle and prey/pray some poor sod on MeFi picks it up..we'll be rich I tell ya RICH!!!"
Forgive me MeFiers. posted by Mr Bluesky at 5:35 PM PST - 23 comments
Your opinionated and offensive uncle always thought it'd be a great idea to start a website and post videos of himself, alone in his living room, giving the world a piece of his mind. Unfortunately for your uncle, The Kid From Brooklyn has been doing it for almost three years. (website SFW, video content NSFW) His insights may not be profound (WMV), but they are certainly expressed eloquently (WMV) and joyously (WMV). posted by billysumday at 5:32 PM PST - 5 comments
Iranian students demonstrate outside Italian embassy in Iran.Chanting anti-Zionism slogans, the ralliers called for the withdrawal of the Zionists from the occupied Palestine.
They also called for the Italian government's explanation on the Nov 15, 2000 assassination of the Eduardo Agnelli suspiciously at the hand of the zionists.
Edoardo Agnelli, born in June 9, 1954 in New York of a Christian father and a Jewish mother, had converted to Islam four years before the victory of the Islamic Revolution in Iran in 1979.
He was the only son of the Italian tycoon Gianni Agnelli -director and the main shareholder of Fiat and Ferrari automaking factories - who died of prostate cancer in January 24, 2003.
Some pictures which prove he was a Moslem. posted by persia at 4:07 PM PST - 103 comments
Welcome to the scene is an interesting low budget soap opera that tells the story of a movie piracy group's workings via IMs and simultaneous video. If you're interested in the logistics of movie piracy (how do these groups work? what's their motivation? where do they get the movies? how do they avoid getting caught?) then this is for you. The story gets more engrossing as you go through the episodes, and the latest gives some insight into how script kiddies do their business. I'd never heard of tools like Metasploit and fragroute till I saw it. There are those who think the whole thing's a setup... I personally doubt it, but one thing this series demonstrates is that for pirates, paranoia is key to survival. posted by jcruelty at 3:24 PM PST - 13 comments
Benny's Postcards "is devoted to the postcards my grandfather collected from approximately 1906-1918. The collection is comprised of 435 postcards, most of which were produced in Russia, Poland and Germany." [coral cache] posted by strikhedonia at 2:34 PM PST - 5 comments
Michael Totten visits the 'ghost city' of Cyprus | "In 1974 the Turkish military invaded and carved up the island. Greek Cypriots in the north were forced to move south side of the line. Turkish Cypriots from the south were forced to move north. Greek Cypriot citizens in Varosha fled the Turkish invasion in terror. They expected to return to their homes within days. Instead, the Turks seized the empty city and wrapped it in fencing and wire. They forbid anyone from entering it to this day." posted by jenleigh at 12:58 PM PST - 75 comments
Google Print debuts today. Working with the University of Michigan, Harvard University, Stanford University, The New York Public Library, and Oxford University, Google has scanned and made searchable at least ten thousand books, with many more to follow. NY Times story here. Meanwhile, certain politicians are trying to "reign in Google" and stop the experiment before it begins. posted by LarryC at 11:18 AM PST - 58 comments
America's Waistline. A new piece examines the politics of the fat. Despite the growing numbers of people who are becoming obese, the fatacceptancemovement remains oddly stunted in terms of membership. The growing civil rights movement faces many problems, including presenting a respectable face to the public. You see, many of the people who are in charge are feeders (NWS). Many wonder how the movement be taken seriously when so many who lead are sexual deviants and much of the revenue generated for size acceptance efforts is through pornography? Still, the battlerageson. posted by skjønn at 11:04 AM PST - 155 comments
Osama bin Laden, littérateur and new-media star. A thought-provoking analysis of bin Laden's adept use of Koranic language and the Internet by Bruce B. Lawrence, an Islamic scholar at Duke who edited a new anthology of bin Laden's public statements called Messages to the World. The Western media -- says the millionaire mass-murderer formerly trained as a useful ally by the CIA via Pakistan's ISI -- "implants fear and helplessness in the psyche of the people of Europe and the United States. It means that what the enemies of the United States cannot do, its media are doing!" Know thy enemy. [via Arts and Letters Daily.] posted by digaman at 7:36 AM PST - 57 comments
The night before. You can bet that most times when someone goes all murder-suicide, there are a few awkward conversations prior when sane people try to talk them out of doing something stupid. You know there is something wrong when the voice of reason is the something awful forums. posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 1:04 AM PST - 77 comments
Another class action suit, another lousy settlement. Are or were you a member of Netflix? Sign up for your benefits under the class action settlement, and receive a free upgrade (or for former members, a free month) of service. That is one whole extra DVD at a time per month. Doesn't sound so hot? It gets better. The next month, they'll keep you on the upgraded plan and raise your bill to match it! Class action settlement, or class action fleecing? posted by jmccorm at 12:52 PM PST - 62 comments
Since 9/11, the United States has appeared to want to do business only with hand picked and officially approved "good Muslims" – that is, to work with Muslims who fit US requirements as to what Islam should be. The problem, of course, is that the figures and groups who carry Washington's seal of approval often have little to no legitimacy among the constituencies the US wants to influence. Viewed in the big picture and over the longer term, one has to wonder whether US goals and those of the emergent "virtual caliphate" might not overlap more than they diverge. Toward a Virtual Caliphate Via Abu Aardwark posted by y2karl at 10:44 AM PST - 5 comments
A Survivor's Story "All of a sudden, hands were grabbing him, hauling him up, laying him on a board. A man in uniform -- it was the Coast Guard that rescued him -- was asking questions.
'What did you do?' 'I jumped off the Golden Gate Bridge.' 'Why?' 'I wanted to kill myself.' " Fourth in a seven-part series on Golden Gate Bridge suicides. A follow-up to this post. posted by echolalia67 at 10:23 AM PST - 48 comments
Life without Theo - one year on. It's not that Holland's cherished troublemaker wasn't aware of the possibility - he had been threatened more than once. He just sincerely believed that no-one would harm the "village idiot", as he liked to call himself (salon link). Today, the skilled polemicist who regarded it his constitutional right to insult anyone but would at the same time engage anyone in reasonable, friendly debate is remembered in variousways. [more inside] posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:02 AM PST - 33 comments
The administration's latest innovation in its effort to export democracy: Soviet-style gulags, a network of secret C.I.A. prisons known as "black sites." [From the Washington Post]. Meanwhile, SecDef Rumsfeld says no thanks to the idea of U.N. inspectors talking to detainees in Guantanamo Bay. posted by digaman at 7:00 AM PST - 369 comments
David Ji , a Chinese-American electronics entrepreneur, spent two months in custody enduring all-night interrogation sessions, but his stubbornness and occasional flashes of sarcasm infuriated his Chinese captors...guards emptied his pockets, removed his shoes and socks, and ripped the buttons off his oxford shirt. He was ushered disheveled and barefoot into the office of Zhao Yong, the chief executive of Sichuan Changhong Electric, Mr. Ji's onetime business partner and, more recently, his warden. posted by taschenrechner at 11:34 PM PST - 34 comments
The President's Advisory Panel on Tax Reform has issued their final report. They propose two different plans - one plan called the "Simplified Income Tax Plan" and one called the "Growth and Investment Tax Plan." Both plans do such things as eliminate the Alternative Minimum Tax, reduce the tax rate in all the brackets and changes the home mortgage interest from a tax deduction to a tax credit at the lowest bracket tax rate (15%) and limits the mortgage amount to the regional average instead of up to $1.1M. Lots to read, and lots of graphs for those who like pictures instead of words (the report starts with income distribution, tax burden, etc and goes on to different tax strategies). posted by SirOmega at 3:47 PM PST - 35 comments
Arcade Sounds.We recorded video games from 1982 until 1988. Fortunately I managed to save all fourteen audio tapes of video game sounds and arcade ambience which were recorded from a variety of locations in the US. Most of the recordings are from Ithaca, NY, Albany, NY and Ocean City, MD. posted by rxrfrx at 2:56 PM PST - 46 comments
Red Color News Soldier: "The project to bring Li Zhensheng’s photographs of the [Chinese] Cultural Revolution to the wider world was first conceived fifteen years ago in Beijing. It was there, at the Chinese Press Association's photography competition in March 1988, that Li first publicly exhibited twenty images from his "negative" negatives – that is, those which had been deemed counterrevolutionary under the political dictates of Chairman Mao Zedong." posted by hall of robots at 9:49 AM PST - 12 comments
November is National Solo Album Month!So, for the purposes of NaSoAlMo, what exactly is a solo album? An album of music you have written, played and recorded entirely by yourself. The shortest inarguably awesome album that a lot of people have heard is the first Ramones album, which is 29:09 long, so your solo album must be at least that long. Beyond that, its form and content are up to you. Sorry to wait until the last minute, but if you sign up today you'll still have 30 days to write and record your masterpiece! posted by mcsweetie at 9:43 AM PST - 52 comments
Greenpeace fined for reef damage Environmental group Greenpeace has been fined almost $7,000 (£4,000) for damaging a coral reef at a World Heritage site in the Philippines. I know it's wrong, but I just couldn't stop laughing when I read this... posted by drewlondon at 5:13 AM PST - 27 comments