November 2012 Archives

November 30

December 1st is World AIDS Day [more inside]
posted by honeybee413 at 10:09 PM PST - 6 comments

The Inside Story Of Pong - On Nov. 29, 1972, a crude table-tennis arcade game in a garish orange cabinet was delivered to bars and pizza parlors around California, and a multi-billion-dollar industry was born. Here's how that happened, direct from the freaks and geeks who invented a culture and paved the way for today's tech moguls.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:32 PM PST - 18 comments


Do you know what Nicki Minaj slowed down is? Nicki Minaj slowed down is Jay-Z, that's what (SLYT, lyrics are NSFW). [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 6:46 PM PST - 68 comments


As Americans, we pick a place to live and then figure out how to get where we need to go. If no way exists, we build it. Roads, arterials, highways, Interstates, and so on. Flexible and distributed transportation networks are really the only solution compatible with that way of thinking. Trains, which rely on a strong central network, never had a chance. We were destined for the automobile all the way back in 1787, when we first decided to carve up the countryside into tidy squares.
Town, Section, Range, and the Transportation Psychology of a Nation [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee at 5:51 PM PST - 20 comments

The retirement of Fireman Ed is more than just an index of the toll taken by the Jets quarterback controversy on fans. It’s also a glimpse into the agonizing heart of fandom. [more inside]
posted by jenkinsEar at 4:18 PM PST - 79 comments

This week in Scotland, it is Book Week. Many note authors are supporting it with free events. And so is the mysterious sculptor who seized the imagination of people worldwide with her books made sculpture. She (one of the few things known about the sculptor) has done a series of five mystery hidden sculptures to help celebrate Book Week. Each of them is related to a Scottish story or author. [more inside]
posted by mephron at 2:42 PM PST - 8 comments

The Music Theory Song presented in a festive melody. (SLYT)
posted by binturong at 1:44 PM PST - 18 comments

You are what you eat. A peek inside 50 people's refrigerators. navigate with left and right arrow keys
posted by special-k at 1:27 PM PST - 190 comments

The Mumbai Parsi community is hoping to return vultures to their traditional and religious role of eating the dead by building aviaries near the Towers of Silence where the Zoroastrian dead are laid out to be stripped clean by vultures. For the past fifteen years, there have been barely a dozen vultures in Mumbai, and members of the community have increasingly turned to cremation (especially during the rainy season), which the religion considers unclean. The community hopes to have vultures return to eating the dead by February 2014. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 1:17 PM PST - 38 comments

In 1994, Tony Randall and Mandy Patinkin's car broke down outside David Letterman's studio and they needed a place to rehearse. Did Dave mind if they used the stage? Great take it away Mandy! [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:16 PM PST - 39 comments

In a private conference this morning, the Supreme Court of the United Stated discussed ten petitions relating to the Defense of Marriage Act and Proposition 8. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:14 PM PST - 93 comments

Ke$ha and Žižek
posted by dortmunder at 12:54 PM PST - 11 comments

After 8 years and over 23 Issues released, City Of Heroes, the first Super-Hero MMO, will be shutting down for good at midnight tonight. Heroes has seen a tremendous amount of support not only from it's fan base, but from the industry as well, it's unique position as the only major Non-Fantasy MMO in the market helping to keep it standing out among the Goblins and the Panda Kung-Fu Fighters. But if the game is so beloved by its customers, why is the game shutting down tonight, even with the newest issue all but released in the Beta Server? Well that's where things get interesting. [more inside]
posted by WeX Majors at 12:35 PM PST - 74 comments



Trap: Volume One is the Flash Dubstep bullet hell game that will consume the rest of your Friday.
posted by RobotHero at 11:36 AM PST - 20 comments

This unassuming, feel-good spice "has been one of the saddest stories of history," from the gruesome, grisly tale of how the Dutch tortured and massacred the people of the Banda Islands in Indonesia in an attempt to monopolize the nutmeg trade. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 11:30 AM PST - 40 comments

The New York Times examines how American taxes have changed since 1980
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 10:43 AM PST - 105 comments

Belts, boots, collars, gauntlets and flared, flared shoulders, a treasure trove of Dave Cockrum art, the artist who made the X-Men popular, all from 1975 to 1985.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:08 AM PST - 28 comments

After thirty years of punk and rock and folk and techno and rebel songs and unexpected pop success and everything in between, the anarchic British band Chumbawamba has come to an end.
posted by Rory Marinich at 9:11 AM PST - 92 comments

"The milk curds were then strained and pressed, yielding unique smelling fresh cheeses" "These cheeses are scientific as well as artistic objects" [more inside]
posted by dubold at 9:03 AM PST - 31 comments

"That effortless look that says 'hey, the baby's sucking the life out of me, but here's a cup of blood to drink.' Pregnant Bella Swan - the perfect make-up look for office parties, bridal showers, or even the first day of school. (NSFW language)
posted by mippy at 8:55 AM PST - 24 comments

It could grip it by the husk. (SLYT)
posted by secretdark at 8:44 AM PST - 23 comments

In 1962, fifty years ago this month, striking union printers shut down four New York City newspapers in resistance to computerized, automated technologies that were being introduced in newsrooms across the country. Five other area papers shut down voluntarily. The strike lasted 114 days and sounded the death knell for four newspapers. For a brief period, New York was a laboratory that demonstrated what can happen when newspapers vanish. Today, new technology is again shaking American newspapers as the Internet drains away more and more advertising revenue. Is this The Long Good Bye? [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:24 AM PST - 25 comments

'It's probably easy today to dismiss Negativland's activities as trifle, banal or plain stupid. They probably wouldn't be too uncomfortable with that, as they rarely claimed to go beyond the softest platitudes of the entertainment biz. No Other Possibility (1989, 58 mins, .avi d/l link), their first video work, showcases the band at a career threshold, before their U2ploitation move and just after their Christianity hoax. It typically explores the debris of American pop culture, dealing with automobile fetishism, televised preaching, halloween traditions, Marlboro masculinity, soft drinks and MTV.' [more inside]
posted by item at 8:15 AM PST - 31 comments

A chronogram is a text (often an inscription), in which certain letters, construed as Roman numerals, express a date via the sum of their numerical values. For example, the sentence ‘LorD haVe MerCIe Vpon Vs,’ printed on a pamphlet might indicate its year of publication as (L + D + V + M + C + I + V + V =) 1666. [more inside]
posted by misteraitch at 7:11 AM PST - 24 comments


I'm British (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:08 AM PST - 24 comments

Anamorphic illusions of items on a desk is the latest of many interesting original visual illusions, tricks, and fun science experiments by Brusspup on Youtube (previously). For handy viewing: Anamorphic playlist; Illusions playlist; Science experiments playlist, plus more, including a playlist of how-to videos for various tricks and activities . [more inside]
posted by taz at 6:10 AM PST - 9 comments

"Having felt what it’s like to have all the backlog of experiences cleared out of my head, I’m intolerant of letting it build up a backlog again. It feels too good when it’s all clean and clear. Another way of talking about this is to say that the frantic, amped up feeling of too much seeking clears away. When we are seeking all the time, we are intaking new material constantly without ever actually dealing with it."
posted by 2or3whiskeysodas at 6:04 AM PST - 31 comments

If you've been along the Connecticut river in eastern Vermont, you may have crossed the Samuel Morey Memorial Bridge, relaxed at Lake Morey, or seen some road markers mentioning Samuel Morey. Besides being the second person in the world to be in a car accident, who was Samuel Morey? [more inside]
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 3:33 AM PST - 8 comments

The author Samuel Langhorne Clemens, a popular MetaFilter topic, was born 177 years ago today (November 30th 1835) in Missouri. The printer, riverboat pilot, game designer, journalist, lecturer, technology investor, gold miner, publisher and patent holder wrote short stories, essays, novels and non-fiction under the pen name Mark Twain. This included The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (recently adapted into a musical), one of the top five challenged books of the 1990s, published in 1884-85 to a mixed reception and with an ending that still causes debate. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 12:03 AM PST - 42 comments

November 29

There are cooler ways to keep your beer cold than your average promotional koozie. There's the Beeracuda, a "liquid lunch box", the Shakoolie for all your shower beer needs, Growler Koozies and the Doozy, the 40oz koozie that comes with a pocket for your lighter. [more inside]
posted by Grandysaur at 8:45 PM PST - 59 comments


A primer in the rhetorical tactics of pseudoscience advocates in the form of an inane pub argument about football.
posted by acb at 5:53 PM PST - 60 comments

Susannah Cahalan has a month-long gap in her memory from when she was struck by the little known disease anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis. Cahalan, a New York Post journalist, wrote an account of her ordeal shortly after it happened, and went on the Today Show to talk about it. Now she has written a book on her experience called Brain on Fire and wants to make people aware of the disease, and that was the subject of a follow-up segment on the Today Show. She is not the only person to have been afflicted. There is more information about the disease and the book on Cahalan's website. She was interviewed at length on NPR's Fresh Air earlier this month. Novelist and essayist Leslie Jamison has a well-written review of Brain on Fire and puts it in its literary context.
posted by Kattullus at 5:28 PM PST - 24 comments

On November 21st, Image Books published Pope Benedict XVI's third and final volume in his Jesus of Nazareth series, The Infancy Narratives. In the book, along with discussions of the geneology of Jesus and the account of the annunciation of his birth, Benedict describes the nativity with as much historical accuracy as modern scholarship permits. The reaction in the world press was immediate: [more inside]
posted by ob1quixote at 5:09 PM PST - 115 comments

An artist who was born with achromatopsia, a condition that prevents the cones in the retina from functioning and as a result the world is perceived in black, white, and grey. was fitted with a machine that enabled him to detect color through sound (an "eyeborg"). This artist, Neil Harbisson, describes what it is like to now perceive color in a Ted Talk "I listen to color"(Ted Talk) and a first-person description. Some of his art work includes a sonochromatic Portrait and music. [more inside]
posted by Wolfster at 4:43 PM PST - 6 comments

The day would come when many West Virginians recalled the story of Jack's Powerball Christmas with a shudder at the magnitude of ruination: families asunder, precious lambs six feet under, folks undone by the lure of all that easy money.
posted by Egg Shen at 3:21 PM PST - 68 comments


Today is the 85th birthday of Hall of Fame baseball announcer Vin Scully. He will be returning next year for his unprecedented 64th season calling games for the Dodgers, in a career reaching back to the team's Brooklyn days and their move to Los Angeles in 1958. The New York Yankees tried to pry him away in the 1960s, but he remained with the team and has become an LA institution. In the 21st Century, he has inspired blog names and tattoos and even dabbled in the online world himself during a game last season -- as an experiment, he asked fans to get a topic trending on Twitter about Dodger catcher A.J. Ellis, "a nice boy." Later in the broadcast he announced sheepishly that Ellis was trending across the U.S. This coming Monday, he will be taking over the team's Twitter feed to answer questions -- tag your tweets #askvin. [more inside]
posted by Celsius1414 at 2:48 PM PST - 23 comments

Christopher Lee reads the original poem The Nightmare Before Christmas [11m], Tim Burton's storybook which inspired the Henry Selick's stop-motion film. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 2:36 PM PST - 18 comments

New evidence for water ice on Mercury. (via Bad Astronomy at its new home)
posted by curious nu at 2:19 PM PST - 23 comments



One of the more memorable things about Moloko are their music videos - or more specifically, music videos featuring Roisin Murphy dancing. [more inside]
posted by chris88 at 1:44 PM PST - 14 comments

An iOS application developer has come up with an extreme way of fighting software piracy—by auto-posting "confessions" to its users' Twitter accounts. "...Enfour, the maker of a variety of dictionary apps, is auto-posting tweets to users' accounts to shame them for being pirates. But the auto-tweeting seems to be affecting a huge portion of its paid user base, not just those who actually stole the apps." Follow-up. A personal account: Can’t spell “pirate” without “-irate”: on DRM and punishing the customer [more inside]
posted by flex at 1:40 PM PST - 74 comments

"The bottom line: Obama’s e-mail fundraising team tested hundreds of grabby subject lines. The most successful—“Hey”— brought in millions of dollars." Inside Obama's chatty e-mail fundraising campaign.
posted by OmieWise at 1:14 PM PST - 44 comments

Historically, archaeologists have largely ignored acoustical science as a tool for archaeological discovery. This is changing with the advent of acoustic archaeology. “Could the Maya have intentionally coded the sound of their sacred bird into the pyramid architecture? I think it is possible.Hear it for yourself in this video. While this is a pretty astounding feat of architectural engineering, it’s by no means the only example of archaeoacoustics that can be found at Chichen Itza, amongst the mayan people, or throughout the many other cultures who’ve built structures that integrate unique auditory phenomenon to stimulate the senses. [previously]/[previously] [more inside]
posted by nTeleKy at 1:02 PM PST - 23 comments

Spain Rodriguez Fought the Good Fight - underground comics artist Spain Rodriguez, most famous for his violent antihero Trashman, passed away yesterday.
posted by Artw at 12:32 PM PST - 30 comments

The Humble Indie Bundle made its name by offering pay-what-you-want pricing for DRM-free, cross-platform collections of independent games, but the latest bundle merits a double-take: it's Windows-only, requires Steam activation, and features seven titles by major publisher THQ. The Bundle has already experimented with music and ebooks, and a past indie bundle included the EA-published Shank. But despite promises that indie games are still "a core of our business," is the latest foray into AAA gaming a step in the wrong direction?
posted by Tubalcain at 12:23 PM PST - 89 comments


In response to WWE.com posting a not-really-that-accurate list of the 50 Most Beautiful People In WWE History (warning: awful slideshow), Brandon Stroud of Withleather assembled an all-star cast of beauty/wrestling experts, including Grantland.com's David Shoemaker, Clark Duke of Hot Tub Time Machine and professional Batmanologist Chris Sims, and with science has composed a a more accurate response list.
posted by mightygodking at 11:48 AM PST - 36 comments

10 PRINT CHR$(205.5+RND(1)); : GOTO 10 (a collaborative book by Nick Montfort, Patsy Baudoin, John Bell, Ian Bogost (previously, previously, previously), Jeremy Douglass, Mark C. Marino, Michael Mateas (of Facade), Casey Reas, Mark Sample and Noah Vawter) uses a single line of code as a basis for pontificating on creative computing and the impact of software in popular culture. 10 PRINT's content is available as a PDF (50 MB). Pictures via Casey Reas' Flickr.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:20 AM PST - 47 comments

"I moderate jokes on a Kids Jokes website. A lot of joke submissions can't be published because they're offensive, not suitable for children or don't make any sense... so I publish them here instead: Bad Kid's Jokes "
posted by Potomac Avenue at 10:18 AM PST - 210 comments

Broadsided Press publishes a new, printable PDF featuring an original poetry & visual art collaboration every month; they've beeing doing it since 2005. You can even become a vector for this distributed, "serendipitous" press.
posted by Miko at 10:05 AM PST - 1 comments

It's been confirmed: Cory and Topanga will be returning to TV screens in a new show focused on their daughter and her friends, Girl Meets World. Sadly, Shawn is not yet officially involved.
posted by kmz at 10:04 AM PST - 53 comments

Scott Eric Kaufman examines the visual rhetoric of Game of Thrones, Doctor Who, Mad Men, Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, and more.
posted by Iridic at 9:57 AM PST - 15 comments


Manhattan District leader Mark Levine plans to run for a city council seat in 2013, for District 7. The problem? Thomas Lopez-Pierre, a Harlem activist who is also running for term-limited Councilman Robert Jackson’s seat, circulated an e-mail late on November 26th in an attempt to plan a “private meeting” to “discuss the potential damage to the political empowerment of the Black and Hispanic community if Mark Levine, a White/Jewish candidate was elected to the 7th Council District in 2013.”
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:53 AM PST - 9 comments

According to multiple sources, as of a few hours ago, Syria has been disconnected from the internet as rebels converge on the capital in an attempt to shut down the airport. [more inside]
posted by empath at 9:14 AM PST - 53 comments


An eminent former editor of the Oxford English Dictionary covertly deleted thousands of words because of their foreign origins and bizarrely blamed previous editors, according to claims in a book published this week.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:06 AM PST - 24 comments

Don Cheadle is Captain Planet: Youtube, Funny Or Die [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:07 AM PST - 15 comments

Politico reports that the AP's online stylebook has recently banned the term "homophobia." AP Deputy Standards Editor Dave Minthorn explained "it's just off the mark. It's ascribing a mental disability to someone, and suggests a knowledge that we don't have. It seems inaccurate. Instead, we would use something more neutral: anti-gay, or some such, if we had reason to believe that was the case." Slate's Nathaniel Frank disagrees with the decision stating that in an effort be appear neutral, the AP risks being part of the problem. James Rainey at the LA Times surveys the arguments for and against the decision and notes that homophobia may be the right term in some situations.
posted by Area Man at 6:31 AM PST - 115 comments

Hollywood Nailz - Episode One, according to the youtube description is "a nail-biting extravaganza of mostly useless products and pansexual hijinks!!!" Created by Seth Bogart (aka Hunx) and Brande Bytheway.
posted by Ennis Tennyone at 6:19 AM PST - 12 comments

Mannerheim: General of the Czar, Marshal of Finland [1/9] (In Russian, with English subtitles) [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 4:29 AM PST - 8 comments

The Geese Book is a lavishly illustrated manuscript of choral music, written for the church of St Lorenz, Nuremberg, between 1504 and 1510. It takes its name from a whimsical illustration showing a choir of geese with a wolf as their choirmaster. The manuscript has now been digitized, and many of the chants recorded, so that you can listen to the music (or even sing along) while following the text. Highlights include Christmas, with a fox and rooster, Ascension Day, with the famous choir of geese, All Saints' Day, with a dragon eating a baby, and the Mass for St Lawrence, with a musical bear.
posted by verstegan at 3:52 AM PST - 8 comments

The Harder They Come. It's mostly about music
posted by timsteil at 3:22 AM PST - 10 comments

Former college football powerhouse Notre Dame hasn't won a national title in a long time (1988, natch). They have a rabid fan-base (arguably the biggest in college sports) and the largest TV deal in the nation with NBC. This season they came from pretty much out of nowhere to land a spot in the national title game. The problem, however, is that the school and its fans are in fact horrible, no-good people. Presenting Drew Magary's A-Z Hater's Guide to Notre Dame! [more inside]
posted by bardic at 1:42 AM PST - 115 comments

Why People Really Love Technology: An Interview with Genevieve Bell The thing I love about Intel researcher Genevieve Bell is that she finds surprising things by looking at what's left out of the dominant narratives about technology. She finds data that's ignored because it didn't fit into the paradigm of, say, how people adopt technology. The dominant narrative is that young men determine the popularity of phones, computers, websites, and the like. But when Bell looked at the data, the story we told ourselves about how the world worked was not reflected in the numbers. That's why I wanted to talk to her about what gadgets people around the world might be using over the next decade. I figured she was someone who could look past the conventional wisdom and find the missing pieces of the future
posted by infini at 1:10 AM PST - 30 comments

Surface-to-air missile proliferation in Syria has become something to watch. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 12:42 AM PST - 44 comments

Arc’teryx, a high-end Vancouver outdoor clothing manufacturer, is working with the VPD's Homeless Outreach Program on the Birds Nest Project in an attempt to provide the city's homeless population with stylish waterproof capes.
posted by mannequito at 12:35 AM PST - 29 comments

November 28


Deli Man Trailer on Vimeo. In 1931, there were 1,550 kosher delis in NYC. Today: 150 Jewish delis in all of North America [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 10:39 PM PST - 28 comments

Disney has a new cartoon series called "Gravity Falls," created by Alex Hirsch who also created The Marvelous Adventures of Flapjack. It features X-Files style paranormal activity in the titular town in Oregon from the perspective of 12 year old twins, Mabel (voiced by Kristen Schaal) and Dipper. While this alone could cultivate a fanbase, it also helps that the show has secret messages and cyphers for viewers to decode. [more inside]
posted by mccarty.tim at 8:34 PM PST - 70 comments

"Entering into one of the fiercest competitions in existence, I found art."
Sixteen mushers. 120 dogs. An adventure across one of the longest mushing trails in the world: the Beringia, a dog sled race stretching 683 miles across eastern Russia. Twilight on the Tundra [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:16 PM PST - 8 comments


Tonight's Powerball lottery drawing was for more than half a billion dollars, the 2nd largest in U.S. history. The Multi-state Lottery Association answers your frequently asked and not so frequently asked questions about the Powerball Lottery with a side of snark. Find out if you won the Powerball Jackpot.
posted by Jahaza at 8:02 PM PST - 74 comments

Press Release The Levelt, Noort and Drenth Committees have published their joint final report of the investigation into the massive academic fraud by Diederik Stapel, a social psychologist, who is known mainly for his work on social priming. English translation of the full report [pdf]. [more inside]
posted by srboisvert at 8:02 PM PST - 11 comments


Rapid Growth Seen in Addiction to Painkillers The escalating use and abuse of powerful painkillers can be found in rich societies from the UK, across Europe to the antipodes. But the country that really knows all about prescription pill excess, and the human toll it claims, is the US. Americans make up less than 5% of the global population but consume 80% of the world's supply of opioid prescription pills. [more inside]
posted by modernnomad at 7:00 PM PST - 63 comments

70 years ago today, 492 people perished in a fire at Boston's popular Cocoanut Grove nightclub. The Cocoanut Grove Coalition offers documents, images, videos, and artifacts of the fire and its aftermath. This fascinating 1995 WGBH clip interviews a variety of survivors, offering a window on the era as well as the fire. Other documents of note: The Boston Library's Flickr photo set and the Library's recently released witness statements and final report. Also noteworthy: Buck Jones and the Cocoanut Grove controversy. [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive at 6:55 PM PST - 25 comments

Joe Smith interviews Jagger, McCartney, Bacharach....apparently pretty much everyone. Retired American music mogul Joe Smith has donated recorded interviews with a who's who of 20th century popular music to the U.S. Library of Congress, which is posting the digitized audio online. The first batch are up now -- more coming at some unspecified future time.
posted by bowline at 6:52 PM PST - 5 comments

"During his civil lawsuit against the People's Republic of China, Brian Milburn says he never once saw one of the country's lawyers. He read no court documents from China's attorneys because they filed none. The voluminous case record at the U.S. District courthouse in Santa Ana contains a single communication from China: a curt letter to the U.S. State Department, urging that the suit be dismissed. That doesn't mean Milburn's adversary had no contact with him." [China Mafia-Style Hack Attack Drives California Firm to Brink]
posted by vidur at 6:16 PM PST - 12 comments

Ron Johnson, who was responsible for Target and Apple's wildly successful retail chains, is now trying to reinvent the department store from the ground up as J. C. Penney's new CEO: divid[ing] stores into 100 shops that [...] will each be like its own small store. Surrounding the shops will be wide aisles that Johnson calls 'streets.' Along those pathways will be ice cream and coffee bars and wood tables with built-in iPad tablet computers that shoppers can use to surf online. But after quarter after quarter of heavy loss, some analysts think Johnson is destroying J. C. Penney. But they've predicted his failure before. More on Johnson's work with the Apple Store. Johnson himself on what he learned building the Apple Store.
posted by Rory Marinich at 6:02 PM PST - 65 comments

HTTP $tatu$ Rapper$
posted by shoesfullofdust at 5:32 PM PST - 17 comments

In Shahr-i Shōkhta, near the Iran/Afghanistan border, archaeologists found the remains of a six foot tall woman who they speculate might have travelled there from the Arabian peninsula. What they do feel sure about, though, is that her golden prosthetic eye was produced there in Shahr-i Shōkhta, also the home of the world's oldest backgammon set; early evidence of brain surgery; caraway seeds; evidence of metal work; an important body of textile artifacts, but apparently no weapons. It is thought to suggest the existence of a major, non Mesopotamian culture. [more inside]
posted by thylacinthine at 5:07 PM PST - 15 comments

According to the Sacramento Bee, Huell Howser is retiring. Best known for his public television show, California's Gold and his boundless enthusiasm, Mr. Howser is "retiring from filming new shows or making appearances."
posted by Guy Smiley at 4:19 PM PST - 40 comments

[Skrillex Quest]
posted by 2bucksplus at 3:46 PM PST - 52 comments

Rock 'N' Roll High School, staring the Ramones, is one of the five greatest American films of all time. Well, five best movie musicals? At the very least, the scene of the band rolling down the high school halls and blaring "Do Ya Wanna Dance" with the teen archetypes (cheerleaders, jocks, geeks, etc.) following, clapping and dancing while brewing up the eventual explosion of the school, could be the most transcendent two minutes of any rock movie. - Eric Davidson, introducing his interview of director Allan Arkush
posted by Egg Shen at 3:17 PM PST - 60 comments

Do you like Cleverbot, but maybe wished that it was an androgynous jpop boy you could dress up and make your boyfriend? There's an app for tha-- oh no wait, nevermind. [more inside]
posted by justkevin at 3:02 PM PST - 21 comments

Nineteen year old Jade Phillips creates images of foxes by marking up pages from old text books and re-assembling them. More of her work is available on Flickr and her own blog.
posted by MartinWisse at 2:13 PM PST - 21 comments

The Myth of American Meritocracy. Ron Unz, former publisher of The American Conservative, has challenged many of the magazine's "paleocon" readers with several recent articles on ethnicity (including His-Panic, which questioned links between immigration and crime, and Race, IQ, and Wealth, with a skeptical eye toward that subject). But in his latest (long!) article, The Myth of American Meritocracy, Unz will challenge many kinds of readers, as he makes the case for persistent, extensive ethnic discrimination in Ivy League admissions, which for decades, he argues, has been extremely biased in favor of under-qualified Jewish whites at the expense of well-qualified Asians and non-Jewish whites. [more inside]
posted by dgaicun at 1:25 PM PST - 80 comments

Mars Curiosity Rover. A short film by Dan Winters, narrated by members of the team that sent Curiosity on its way. [more inside]
posted by Narrative Priorities at 12:38 PM PST - 11 comments


Jack Kirby Double-Page Spreads. A flickr set of double-splash-page spreads by the King of Comics.
posted by marxchivist at 10:42 AM PST - 28 comments

The smell of earth after rain is called Petrichor, and it is caused by Geosmin, a sesquiterpenoid metabolite with the chemical formula C12H22O. Human sensitivity to geosmin is about 10 parts per trillion. (via)
posted by mrgrimm at 9:48 AM PST - 95 comments

Remember that what has once been done may be done again. Alexandre Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers were inspired by the life of his father, Alexandre. However, Alexandre Sr. was not just a handsome swashbuckler or a vengeful former prisoner. The boy who came from Haiti to France as “slave Alexandre” in 1776 had, by the age of 32, become commander-in-chief of the French revolutionary army in the Alps, eventually leading 53,000 troops to victory against formidably trained Austrian alpine forces. [more inside]
posted by Currer Belfry at 9:28 AM PST - 24 comments

Bruce Bartlett tells the story of how he lost faith in the Republican Party.
posted by Ipsifendus at 9:23 AM PST - 162 comments


"Wine. The nectar of the gods. But what if your corkscrew mysteriously goes missing?" Here are seven ways to remove a cork from a wine bottle without a proper corkscrew. [slyt] [via] [previously] [more inside]
posted by quin at 9:09 AM PST - 48 comments

Earlier this month, British Petroleum agreed to plead guilty to 14 violations of law, including negligence causing death and the Clean Water Act. [more inside]
posted by Lemurrhea at 9:07 AM PST - 59 comments

One hundred and six environmental activists were murdered in 2011 (pdf, some cases).
posted by jeffburdges at 8:55 AM PST - 4 comments

The Violence is a new album by Darren Hayman about the Essex Witch Trials conducted by Matthew Hopkins, where over 300 women were put to death between 1644 and 1646. [more inside]
posted by dng at 8:43 AM PST - 7 comments

On Nov. 25th, Ken Regan, iconic photographer of rock icons such as Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones (among many others) died of cancer. A spokesperson for his studio declined to give Regan's age, calling him "ageless." A GQ interview from late last year. A gallery of 16 of his images, and another gallery of 25 images. His (Flash required) web site's biography and portfolio. A one hour phone interview (warning: insufferable 3-1/2 minute pre-interview ad).
posted by spock at 8:17 AM PST - 2 comments

Friendship is Optimal is not a "My Little Pony" fanfic, but a SF story that starts with a procedurally-generated MLP MMO, and crescendos to what could very well be the Best Possible Outcome if self-optimizing algorithms are given /almost/ the right goals. Some readers are horrified by the implications; some want to move into "Equestria Online" anyway. Whichever camp you fall in, you'll never forget the phrase "satisfy human values through friendship and ponies".
posted by DataPacRat at 8:01 AM PST - 41 comments

Twenty miles or so east of Amsterdam, set between the new towns of Almere and Lelystad, and lying five metres below sea-level, is the youngest wilderness I have ever seen. The Oostvaardersplassen is now a vast region of grassland, reed-bed, shallow lake and ragged forest, over 6,000 hectares in extent. Sea eagles and marsh harriers hunt its wide skies, spoonbills and avocets stalk its marshes, and vast herds of red deer, wild ponies and Heck cattle graze its savannah. But 40 years ago, the Oostvaardersplassen was underwater.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:55 AM PST - 11 comments

How is the new game Family Guy: Back to the Multiverse? Find out for yourself! [more inside]
posted by kmz at 7:46 AM PST - 45 comments


The vanishing Ninja.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:18 AM PST - 36 comments

On the 15th November 1988, the Palestine National Council under Yasser Arafat made a Declaration of Independence. The declaration was supported by more than 100 countries, and recognised a two state solution. It led to a UN vote, which was supported by 104 states and voted against by two. Twenty four years later, on the 29th November, and 65 years to the day after the UN adopted the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine, Mahmoud Abbas is making a renewed bid for Palestinian statehood. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan at 6:17 AM PST - 138 comments


Dr. Gisella Perl was a gynecologist living in what is now Sighet, Rumania, when in 1944 she and her family were transported by the Nazis to the death camp at Auschwitz. There, she was forced to work under Joseph Mengele in the camp hospital. After seeing the horrors and abuse leading up to the murder of pregant women, she "decided that never again would there be a pregnant woman in Auschwitz." Gisella Perl: Angel and Abortionist in the Auschwitz Death Camp [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:33 AM PST - 40 comments

Stormtrooper Cops [slyt]
posted by baueri at 12:39 AM PST - 35 comments

November 27

What do NASCAR's AJ Allmendinger, Joe Haden of the Cleveland Browns, New York Giants safety Tyler Sash, Carlos "Chooch" Ruiz of the Philadelphia Phillies, and many other athletes have in common? They have all used a performance enhancing substance that is growing in popularity among athletes, one that is widely prescribed and which is taken by millions of children every day. The drug in question is Adderall: The combination of dextroamphetamine and amphetamine is used as part of a treatment program to control symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. [more inside]
posted by Drinky Die at 11:56 PM PST - 30 comments

“I am convinced [Dorothy Day] is a saint for our time,” Cardinal Dolan said at the bishops’ meeting. She exemplifies, he said, “what’s best in Catholic life, that ability we have to be ‘both-and’ not ‘either-or.’ ” [more inside]
posted by ActionPopulated at 10:19 PM PST - 28 comments


Pictures of Sausage , and things made from sausage.
posted by frimble at 9:37 PM PST - 27 comments


American paratrooper Arthur Boorman suffered debilitating injuries during the first Gulf War. Doctors told him he'd never walk unassisted again. 15 years later.... [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:47 PM PST - 16 comments

When Neil Patrick Harris dreams, he dreams in puppet: Episode One of Neil's Puppet Dreams "The Lullabye". Bonus: Episode Two "Behind The Scenes".
posted by hippybear at 7:46 PM PST - 18 comments

The International Tracing Service was established following the Second World War to help repatriate forced laborers and survivors of the concentration camps as well as to trace the missing. 67 years after the end of the war, ITS receives about 1,080 requests for information a month, some of which still result in reuniting relatives. [more inside]
posted by hoyland at 7:45 PM PST - 5 comments


Do you have $500,000 lying around? If you do, Elon Musk might just send you to colonize Mars. This is not the first time that Musk has discussed his desire for a colony on Mars. Interesting as it sounds, not everyone is excited about the idea.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 6:36 PM PST - 70 comments

Her Majesty the Queen has been pleased to approve the appointment of Mark Carney as Governor of the Bank of England from 1 July 2013. He will succeed Sir Mervyn King. [more inside]
posted by vozworth at 6:34 PM PST - 48 comments


Pianist Arthur Rubinstein teaches the Chopin Ballade #1: Part 1, Part 2. Here is a Rubinstein recording of the ballade in full. [more inside]
posted by beisny at 5:19 PM PST - 7 comments

Named as one of the New York Times's 100 Notable Books of 2012, Alison Bechdel's graphic memoir, "Are You My Mother? A Comic Drama," calls on memory, Virginia Woolf's "To the Lighthouse," Donald Winnicott's psychoanalytic work (.pdf), Alice Miller's "The Drama of the Gifted Child," and the shade of P.D. Eastman's classic short book about a baby bird in search of its mama to explore her fraught relationship with her mother, Helen. It's art. It's theory. It's self. It's meta-memoir in search of a mother. [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:14 PM PST - 15 comments

Man raps to Chris Brown's Look At Me Now using only Family Guy voices.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 3:31 PM PST - 27 comments

Over the last fifteen years, I have created the world of Refractoria, a comprehensive imagino-ordinary world that is equal parts autobiography and pure fantasy. - Jeffrey Beebe [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 3:15 PM PST - 11 comments

History's most influential people, ranked by Wikipedia reach (jpg version).
posted by stbalbach at 1:50 PM PST - 120 comments


The Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Writing 2012 has been announced. James Gleick has won for his book The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood. The shortlist is also available with Chapter 1 of each book downloadable as a PDF.
posted by shimmerbug at 1:06 PM PST - 5 comments


Oscar Dominguez is probably best known for the Electro Sexual Sewing Machine.
He was a surrealist (Fr) and a forger (pdf).
When a fight broke out between Oscar Dominguez and Esteban Frances, it was Victor Brauner who stepped in to separate them, Dominguez accidentally struck him in the face with a bottle. The injury cost Brauner his left eye, an event that Brauner had forseen.
Dominguez updated the technique known as Decalmania.
His last lover was the heiress Marie-Laure de Noailles and during this time he replaced some of her Picasso´s with forgeries painted by himself, selling the originals. He is also suspected of forging Klee, Ledger and Laurens.
He slit his wrists one New years Eve and Janet Flanner churlishly conjectured that he “lay down on the floor, being a dirty, untidy man…and bled all over everything”.
posted by adamvasco at 12:33 PM PST - 7 comments

Are Your Facebook Friends Stressing You Out? (Yes.) - "The finding, which is similar to one determined last year, is nice as a headline: It's both unexpected (friends! stressing you out! ha!) and ironic (the currency of the social web, taking value rather than adding it!). What's interesting, though, is the why of the matter: the idea that, the report theorizes, the wider your Facebook network, the more likely it is that something you say or do on the site will end up offending one of that network's members... Unsurprisingly, per the study's survey of more than 300 Facebook users, 'adding employers or parents resulted in the greatest increase in anxiety.'" [more inside]
posted by flex at 10:54 AM PST - 135 comments

A report was recently released suggesting a pre-emptive ban on fully autonomous weapons - robots that can pick and choose whom to fire on. If this sounds vaguely alarming to you, don't worry - the Department of Defense issued a directive indicating that fully automous robots may only decide to tase you.
posted by wolfdreams01 at 10:39 AM PST - 94 comments

Los Angeles-based electronic artist Nosaj Thing has collaborated with with the artist/scientist, Daito Manabe (previously) and Creators Project (info) to produce a stunning and graceful audio/visual feast for his new single "Eclipse/Blue", which features Kazu Makino of Blonde Redhead on vocals.
posted by raihan_ at 10:34 AM PST - 5 comments

Women in the gaming industry have taken to twitter to talk about the sexism they've faced under the hashtag #1reasonwhy [more inside]
posted by dinty_moore at 10:07 AM PST - 139 comments


The video for Frightened Rabbit's new song "State Hospital" is a powerful meditation on rape, domestic violence, suicide and what it means to be strong in the face of all of them. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 9:23 AM PST - 16 comments

Spending the Day with Charles, Your Hangover [SLVimeo] [nsfw-ish]
posted by quin at 8:59 AM PST - 11 comments

The implication is, you’re making it for a group that you are not a member of—and there is something very insincere in that. If you’re dealing with a storytelling medium, which is a mechanized means of producing and presenting a dream that you’re inviting people to share, you’d better believe your dream or else it’s going to come off as patronizing. Innovation lessons from Pixar: An interview with Oscar-winning director Brad Bird (PDF) or (HTML, registration required)
posted by shivohum at 8:49 AM PST - 24 comments

From The National Center For Children in Poverty: Young Child Risk Calculator: "The risk factors used in this tool are known to increase the chance of poor health, school, and developmental outcomes for young children. Economic hardship paired with any of the listed risk factors may indicate a greater chance of poor outcomes. Children with three or more risks are exceptionally vulnerable. Information about the prevalence of young children experiencing these risks can inform policies aimed at improving outcomes for vulnerable children and reducing the number of children experiencing early risks." [more inside]
posted by OmieWise at 8:07 AM PST - 6 comments

More than three-quarters of the food consumed in the United States today is processed, packaged, shipped, stored, and sold under artificial refrigeration. The shiny, humming stainless steel box in your kitchen is just the tip of the iceberg, so to speak—a tiny fragment of the vast global network of temperature-controlled storage and distribution warehouses cumulatively capable of hosting uncounted billions of cubic feet of chilled flesh, fish, or fruit.
posted by Chrysostom at 7:48 AM PST - 28 comments

If you follow the usual crop of technology news sites, you will have read yesterday morning that Google had apparently acquired a little-known WiFi hotspot company for $400 million. This story spread with the help of the most popular (and most reputable) sites, like TechCrunch, Engadget, The Verge, The Next Web, and others. Only one small detail: the story wasn't actually true. [more inside]
posted by nickheer at 7:45 AM PST - 54 comments


Act Of Faith and Jimmy's End, short films by written Alan Moore and directed by Mitch Jenkins - dreamy, dark, disturbing and possibly NSFW (MLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:25 AM PST - 9 comments



November 26

"You probably don't think of your car as a developer platform, but Mike Rosack did."
posted by vidur at 9:54 PM PST - 25 comments

People tend to divide noted libertarian Robert A. Heinlein's career into three different eras, with the "juveniles," the "slick" science fiction stories, and the bigger, more opinionated novels, but over in Locus Magazine, Gary Westfahl has a theory that's sure to be controversial: Heinlein's career actually divides into a slew of serious novels, followed by a swerve into satire. {Via I09} [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 9:54 PM PST - 96 comments

Do You Rock? [Epilepsy Warning] [Monochromatic Booty-Shaking Warning] A simple video for a simple tune. A parody and/or a ripoff of DubstepLyrics. [more inside]
posted by laconic skeuomorph at 9:14 PM PST - 17 comments


The Parent Rap. Two parents rap about their life. [slyt]
posted by fings at 7:51 PM PST - 58 comments

GIFFTRAX!
posted by kittensofthenight at 6:51 PM PST - 41 comments

Angus Jones, better known as Jake on the show Two and a Half Men, has joined the Seventh Day Adventist Church. The young star has released a pair of videos urging people to stop watching the show.
posted by reenum at 6:41 PM PST - 182 comments


I am fairly sure of these: Ginger, orris, galengal, lovage, chiretta, angelica, elecampane, hyssop, pomerance, camomile, lavender, coriander, pepper, cloves, star anis, allspice, nutmeg, cardamon, fennel, bitter orange, rose hips, quinine, licorice, tumeric, mace, saffron.

These are possibles: marshmallow, yarrow, burdock, curcuma, grains of paradise, cubeb, wintergreen, cassia, betony, purslane, borage, sandalwood.

Deer blood is a myth. Caramel is used as a sweetener. Your real problem is getting the proportions right.

And don't mix it with Red Bull. Drink it straight and cold.
posted by 256 at 6:23 PM PST - 88 comments

Chef Grant Achatz plates the final dessert course at Alinea. Or perhaps you'd prefer the chocolate pumpkin pie or the edible balloon? Bon appetit!
posted by madamjujujive at 5:57 PM PST - 51 comments

In October, 18-year old high school senior Ryan Romo was arrested for the sexual assault of a child (someone 16 or under, by TX state law). On October 31, CultureMap Dallas's managing editor, Claire St. Amant published an article asking, "Is this Highland Park baseball star a rapist?" St. Amant ended her article, stating: If it's a case of impulsive teenage decisions, remorse and guilt, then no one suffers more than 18-year-old Ryan Romo. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 5:36 PM PST - 44 comments

Has politics gone peer-to-peer? A rich 90-minute panel discussion with Steven Johnson, author of "Future Perfect: The Case for Progress in a Networked World", featuring Yochai Benkler, Susan Crawford and Lawrence Lessig.
posted by mhjb at 4:27 PM PST - 6 comments

"You will not find a group less in favor of automatically aggressive, invasive medical care than intensive care nurses, because we see the pointless suffering it often causes in patients and families. Intensive care is at best a temporary detour during which a patient’s instability is monitored, analyzed, and corrected, but it is at worst a high tech torture chamber, a taste of hell during a person’s last days on earth."
posted by Baron Kriminel at 3:36 PM PST - 45 comments

Erdal Inci has been experimenting with "cloned motion" in video for years and has now converted some of his hypnotic videos into looped gifs. (long-loading page, but worth it)
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:36 PM PST - 8 comments

Kim Jong-un named Sexiest Man Alive for 2012. Link goes to Korea times.
posted by blue_beetle at 3:33 PM PST - 35 comments


[Henry] Hook has come to be known as the Marquis de Sade of the puzzle world: a brilliant and oddly beloved misanthrope, administering exquisite torture through dozens of puzzle books and syndicated crosswords.
posted by Egg Shen at 3:06 PM PST - 6 comments

The Philips CD-i was a unique blend of CD player and gaming console, with "interactive" playback capabilities. The only completely interactive music CD for the platform was released by Todd Rundgren in 1993. A reference guide for everything CD-i can be found here.
posted by MattMangels at 2:53 PM PST - 29 comments


Dynamo ep1 It’s an experiment. It’s a story. It’s a series of shorts. It’s a sci-fi/fantasy/’cute cyberpunk’ webseries. It’s the result of four years of late night discussions between friends. It’s a convoluted puzzle about the nature of reality (and monsters! and horrible romance!) It’s a narrative with layers of interlocking pieces. It’s the best thing we know how to make- and it’s pretty wacky! [more inside]
posted by P.o.B. at 2:29 PM PST - 4 comments

Wattpad, started in 2006, is a free social writing site where people can publish their own work, read others' writing, and provide feedback. It can be accessed on a computer, tablet, or smartphone, with an app for Android or iOS. Wattpad enthusiast Margaret Atwood is currently collaborating with British author Naomi Alderman on a serial comic/horror story; you can read the chapters of The Happy Zombie Sunrise Home as they are added. [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 2:16 PM PST - 8 comments

Ta-Nehisi Coates discusses male mythology, biology and Raymond Chandler's Private Dick
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:32 PM PST - 45 comments

The Canto Ostinato is a minimalist classical composition written in 1976-1979 consisting of "small, entirely tonal cells which are repeated - how many times is left to the performer". Usually performed by two or four pianos, it's also been adapted to other instruments like the harp. The Canto Ostinato ("stubborn song") was written by Dutch composer Simeon ten Holt, who passed away yesterday. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 1:28 PM PST - 6 comments

Stanley Park is an urban forest, 1.5 square miles of fir and cedar abutting downtown Vancouver. It features stunning views of the Salish Sea, the North Shore Mountains, the Lion's Gate Suspension Bridge and a giant heap of neon-yellow 99.9% pure elemental sulfur. [more inside]
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 1:03 PM PST - 28 comments

Entrepreneur Jia Jiang has decided to overcome his fear of rejection through a sort of exposure therapy desensitization: he's "seeking one rejection on purpose every day for 100 days" by making crazy requests of strangers, filming each encounter on his iPhone and posting them to his blog. Here's his attempt on Day 3 to order doughnuts shaped (and colored) like the Olympic rings at a Krispy Kreme in Austin, TX. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:51 AM PST - 86 comments

From their archives, Mary Shelley writes about the origins of Frankenstein.
posted by zzazazz at 11:24 AM PST - 6 comments

"my interest in a lot of old game music now has very little to do with "nostalgia" or any associations i had with the games, and much more to do with the way the different kinds of hardware used created interesting compromises for composers that led them [to] making some really interesting sounds," Liz Ryerson collects sounds from the abyss. In her blog post here she details the history and appeal of five (mostly forgotten) game soundtracks which push the limits of the both the genre and the hardware. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 10:26 AM PST - 24 comments

Who's the Shop Steward on Your Kickstarter? "The true product for sale on Kickstarter is not your art project, but your community and networks. ... Our projects that facilitate the funding are a side effect, a cost of doing business—the business of drilling our relationships for all they are worth."
posted by mykescipark at 10:07 AM PST - 35 comments

LARP Trek - webcomic from MetaFilter's own cortex
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:12 AM PST - 210 comments

The party has been gathered and you will soon venture forth.
posted by griphus at 9:11 AM PST - 44 comments

The Art of Ironing is, primarily, a Russian advertisement for steam irons, however it is also a remarkable demonstration of recreating art from unusual materials; in this case, a simple white piece of cloth.
posted by quin at 8:56 AM PST - 11 comments

All the 245 pdf-format, public domain Loebs conveniently arranged in one place, ready to be downloaded for your classics reading pleasure. (via time's flow stemmed)
posted by Marauding Ennui at 8:13 AM PST - 47 comments

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford (previously, also previously) has been kicked out of office for violating the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act after being found to have deliberately voted at city council on a measure related to his own pecuniary interests (previously). Full decision here. Ford may run for Mayor again in 2014. (Ford is widely expected to appeal the decision and request that the order be stayed in the meantime.)
posted by mightygodking at 7:49 AM PST - 158 comments

Which James Bond villain has the most plausible schemes?
posted by Chrysostom at 7:17 AM PST - 72 comments

This website makes puns. A single serving web app.
posted by jonbro at 6:53 AM PST - 77 comments

The Torre Argentina Roman Cat Sanctuary has been taking care of the multitude of felines that haunt the Largo Argentina archeological site in Rome since 1995. Their website has a page about its history, videos of their cats, and all the things you find on cat shelter websites. But they also have a blog dedicated to their fight with local authorities. Italian archeological administrators have demanded that the feline sanctuary be evicted [NYT] from the location of Julius Caesar's assassination, but the cat shelter is fighting back. In the blog of the New York Review of Books, the almost certainly pseudonymous Massimo Gatto points out that the archeological site is a hodgepodge of actual ruins and bad reconstructions dating back to the Fascist era.
posted by Kattullus at 6:39 AM PST - 17 comments


The Rule of Reciprocation: an interesting read for anyone who works for tips, or wonders why your physician is prescribing that particular medication. From NPR "Give And Take: How The Rule Of Reciprocation Binds Us"
posted by HuronBob at 5:39 AM PST - 13 comments

At the time of the release of the documentary "Capturing the Friedmans," filmmaker Andrew Jarecki was criticized by some for not clearly advocating for the release of Jesse Friedman. However, eight years later, Jarecki is still working on assembling interviews and footage of victims recanting their testimony in an effort to overturn Friedman’s 1989 Great Neck molestation conviction.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:27 AM PST - 15 comments

My 6,128 Favorite Books - "Joe Queenan on how a harmless juvenile pastime turned into a lifelong personality disorder."
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:22 AM PST - 150 comments

Conceived as sort of a companion to Longreads, Longform, Pocket, Byliner, etc., Nieman Storyboard's Why's This So Good? series looks at why some great long-form journalism and narrative nonfiction pieces are so great. There are over 60 installments of writers talking shop about writing. [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 12:06 AM PST - 7 comments

November 25

Back in March I posted about the forgotten Nickelodeon show Turkey Television. Recently a full episode of the show (later era) has shown up on YouTube: Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3.
If that's too much video tryptophan (even at its best, Turkey Television was amazingly uneven), here's a few clips (WARNING: CONTAINS UNCLE HOGRAM, also some of Uncle Floyd's bizarre Day In The Life Of A Food) from YouTube user 2reelers. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 9:13 PM PST - 19 comments

Illusion of Choice. A dubstep routine by the quartet Dragon House. Mind. Blown. [SLYT] [via] [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky at 9:01 PM PST - 31 comments

Y est-ce deux dés? (not exactly what it says on the tin) [more inside]
posted by BungaDunga at 7:41 PM PST - 24 comments


At Cambridge University, the Project for Existential Risk is considering threats to humankind caused by developing technologies. It will be developing a prospectus for the Centre for the Study of Existential Risk, to be launched by the Astronomer Royal, a co-founder of Skype and the Bertrand Russell professor of philosophy. More detail from the university, while the news excites some journalists. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 5:22 PM PST - 25 comments

The pinnacle of convention cosplay has finally been achieved: The five-person assembling Voltron costume. (sideways phonecam video)
posted by Strange Interlude at 5:19 PM PST - 39 comments

Which isn't to say it's not a deep record — it's just a record that wears its depth lightly, couching it in gags and a multitude of weird voices and ball-busting autocritique. The almost-hit-single "Passin' Me By" stands out most clearly as a foundational text for modern nerd-rap of all stripes, but the whole record operates in previously uncharted territory, foregoing both tough-guy posturing and didacticism in favor of honesty. It's about hormonal mischief and formative heartbreak, the mistakes these guys have made and the mistakes they'll make again, and the fact that it's one of the funniest-on-purpose rap albums ever made never quite overshadows its precocious intelligence. 20 years later, it's time for another Bizarre Ride II The Pharcyde. [more inside]
posted by mannequito at 2:05 PM PST - 16 comments


According to a study done at the university of Hiroshima, watching pictures of cute animals makes you more productive. Considering the state many Americans might be in on Monday following a long weekend of turkey and pumkin pie, perhaps watching a few cute videos might be a good idea to get America's productivity up to par. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:36 PM PST - 26 comments

Nanci Griffith, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Emily Saliers & Amy Ray (Indigo Girls) are featured in this 1991 Austin City Limits "Songwriters Special" episode. Filmed at the peak of the female singer-songwriter arc 20 years ago, this special also includes Julie "From A Distance" Gold. [~58m, download links also available at the link] [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 11:18 AM PST - 30 comments

Just think about it for a moment: One gram of DNA can store 700 terabytes of data. That’s 14,000 50-gigabyte Blu-ray discs… in a droplet of DNA that would fit on the tip of your pinky. To store the same kind of data on hard drives — the densest storage medium in use today — you’d need 233 3TB drives, weighing a total of 151 kilos. In Church and Kosuri’s case, they have successfully stored around 700 kilobytes of data in DNA — Church’s latest book, in fact — and proceeded to make 70 billion copies (which they claim, jokingly, makes it the best-selling book of all time!) totaling 44 petabytes of data stored. [more inside]
posted by latkes at 11:13 AM PST - 72 comments

Via io9: "The first nine Superman cartoons produced by Fleischer Studios from 1941 to 1942 are a wonder of animated retrofuturism, giving us a peek into a world that not only had a flying superstrong protector, but also filled viewers' heads with dreams of autonomous robots, comet-controlling telescopes, and machines that could shake the Earth. These films are in the public domain and have been available on the Internet Archive," but now Warner Bros. is releasing them (remastered) on YouTube. The first short, "Superman" (also known as "The Mad Scientist,") was nominated for an Academy Award. Also see: The Super Guide to the Fleischer Superman Cartoons. Find links to all nine episodes and more inside. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:54 AM PST - 28 comments

The making of de_dust & de_dust2.
posted by Evernix at 9:24 AM PST - 29 comments

Today, in Toronto, the Grey Cup will be awarded for the 100th time, to the CFL champion. What is it? What is the history? Who is playing? Why was someone riding a horse in the best hotel in town? [more inside]
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 7:24 AM PST - 95 comments

“I stole this book from the library ages ago…”
“Fourth grade” I say, watching them huddled together in the mirror.
“…one of those Marvin K. Redpost books. He kisses his elbow one day and when he wakes up the next morning he's a girl.”
“I meant to make you take it back but I bet we still have it.”
“My mom's cataloging fifteen years of gender-bending in one week.” She says, rolling her eyes.... “Seriously Mom, how did you NOT know?”
She will ask me this a hundred times. I will ask myself a hundred more and still never I didn't have a good answer then and I don't now. Perhaps we simply see what we expect to see and write off anything that doesn't fit into the little boxes we put people into. Or perhaps she'd learned to mask and over-correct, to hide so well that by the time those distinctions matter, I could not see her until she tore down that wall. I wish I'd known sooner.
Behind the Curtain (AKA OMG Marvin K. Redpost is a girl!) is one of the funnier excerpts from The Complicated Geography of Alice, a memoir in progress.
posted by carsonb at 7:15 AM PST - 16 comments

At least 112 workers died in Tazreen garments factory fire in Bangladesh. The reasons of the fire are the subject of investigation, but the firefighters put the blame for the tragedy on the lack of fire exits. Since 2006, over 500 garment factory workers died in Bangladesh fires caused often by poor safety standards and shoddy electrical installations. The garments made in the Tazreen factory were sold by C&A, among others. Clothing makes up 80 percent of the country's $24 billion in annual exports.
Last year saw the 100th anniversary of another such tragedy.
posted by hat_eater at 7:07 AM PST - 31 comments


Ecstasy found to help veterans with PTSD "In a paper posted online Tuesday by the Journal of Psychopharmacology, Michael and Ann Mithoefer, the husband-and-wife team offering the treatment — which combines psychotherapy with a dose of MDMA — write that they found 15 of 21 people who recovered from severe post-traumatic stress in the therapy in the early 2000s reported minor to virtually no symptoms today. Many said they have received other kinds of therapy since then, but not with MDMA... And news that the Mithoefers are beginning to test the drug in veterans is out, in the military press and on veterans’ blogs. 'We’ve had more than 250 vets call us,' Dr. Mithoefer said. 'There’s a long waiting list, we wish we could enroll them all.'"
posted by bookman117 at 2:18 AM PST - 36 comments

"If Fantasma is a concept album, then what exactly is the concept? Simply-put, Fantasma is an album about music itself — a tribute to how the very process of hardcore music nerd fandom and collection reference lead to creation and production." Released in 1997, Fantasma by Cornelius was one of the finest albums of the 90's, and arguably the peak of the Shibuya-Kei music scene in Japan. Néojaponisme recently published a five-part, detailed retrospective on the album in honor of its fifteenth anniversary. While reading, you can listen to a playlist of the full album on YouTube. Enjoy! [more inside]
posted by naju at 1:24 AM PST - 22 comments

November 24

With hits like Party Hard, It's Time to Party, and Long Live the Party classic records like Party Til You Puke and The "Party All Goddamn Night" EP, Andrew W.K. (previously) likes to party. He's excited to be "promoting partying and world peace." for the US State Department, who just named Andrew to be a cultural ambassador to Bahrain.
posted by matrixclown at 11:21 PM PST - 76 comments

Hybridize, or disappear [SLQTM].
posted by slater at 9:14 PM PST - 12 comments


All things Quast. Remember Inspector Javert in the 1987 Les Mis cast? Must have been some famous world class opera singer, right? No, he was just a minor Australian actor. Who just happens to have an unbelievable voice.
posted by EnterTheStory at 4:32 PM PST - 79 comments

Gus Wilson, master mechanic, pipe smoker, cap wearer, crime fighter, sage, is a part owner of the Model Garage. These are his stories. [more inside]
posted by Mitheral at 4:32 PM PST - 7 comments

ABC News issues a "Made in America" Christmas challenge. The average American will spend $700 on holiday gifts and goodies this year, totaling more than $465 billion, the National Retail Federation estimates. If that money was spent entirely on US made products it would create 4.6 million jobs. But it doesn't even have to be that big. If each of us spent just $64 on American made goods during our holiday shopping, the result would be 200,000 new jobs. [more inside]
posted by Brian B. at 3:21 PM PST - 102 comments

Jens Spahn is a parliamentarian in Germany's centre-right party, the Christian Democrats (CDU) and a committed Catholic. He is also gay, and has been openly so throughout his 11-year political career. While he does not focus specifically on gay issues, he advocates equal civil rights for gays and lesbians (including gay marriage, tax parity and adoption rights) from a conservative position. He does not regard this to be a contradiction.
posted by acb at 2:30 PM PST - 32 comments


KCRW presents: Wayne Coyne's Human Head-Shaped Tumor. McSweeney's and KCRW present this radio drama in the style of Mercury Theatre's War of the Worlds, featuring the music from the Flaming Lips, Bill Callahan, Okkervil River, Eleanor Friedberger, Nico Muhly, and Oneida.
posted by srboisvert at 1:51 PM PST - 6 comments

Each year Bladeforums members vote for the best bowie knife. The result is a gallery of absolutely beautiful and innovative custom bowies by master craftsmen.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:44 PM PST - 47 comments

In the telling it has the contours of a creation myth: At a time of great evil and great terror, a small group of scientists, among the world’s greatest minds, secluded themselves in the desert. In secrecy and silence they toiled at their Promethean task. They sought the ultimate weapon, one of such great power as to end not just their war, but all war. They hoped their work would salvage the future. They feared it could end everything. - Prometheus in the desert: from atom bombs to radio astronomy, New Mexico's scientific legacy
posted by Artw at 12:30 PM PST - 22 comments

Roger Federer in Shanghai Federer is inescapably beautiful, but most of the time he does nothing extraordinary. Then there is a shot that makes people let out sounds and imitate, with imaginary rackets, what they just saw. In a way, Federer is like a good novel—it does not try to achieve genius in every line, that would be amateurish; it is unafraid of the lull, accepts the importance of the ordinary, and then there is a sudden moment of greatness.
posted by dhruva at 10:50 AM PST - 16 comments

Boxer Héctor "Macho" Camacho has died, four days after being shot in the face while sitting in a parked car. Popular for his flamboyant and reckless style both in the ring and out, Camacho racked up an astounding career record of 79-6-3. In a famous 1997 bout, he knocked out Sugar Ray Leonard, scotching Leonard's final attempt at a comeback.
posted by MissySedai at 9:37 AM PST - 18 comments

The Vast Recorded Legacy of the Grateful Dead Everyone needs a hobby. [more inside]
posted by freakazoid at 9:08 AM PST - 82 comments

Sure the television broadcasts catch every angle of NASCAR wrecks. However, I think views from the grandstands offer a unique view of the thrill and danger of these events.

[more inside]
posted by zzazazz at 7:49 AM PST - 72 comments

Author David Mitchell discusses how his "unfilmable" book, Cloud Atlas, was adapted into a movie.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:28 AM PST - 56 comments

The private collection of Jim & Gayle Halperin includes original EC comic book art, work by R. Crumb (such as the original Big Yum Yum book), Maxfield Parrish prints and a lot of other great stuff.
posted by xowie at 6:48 AM PST - 5 comments

November 23

Why would someone want to fake a serious illness on the Internet? Valerie, a cancer survivor, decided to blog about her experience with cancer. While blogging, she interacted with three women who faked illnesses to get attention or had what is referred to as "Munchausen by Internet." As a result, Valerie lost money and friendships, gained a troll, and shut down her blog. Here is a list of clues for the detection of false Internet illness claims.
posted by Four-Eyed Girl at 8:13 PM PST - 135 comments


Publishers Weekly lists the most expensive books of the season.
posted by anothermug at 6:55 PM PST - 34 comments

Minutemen's Mike Watt interviewed about Double Nickels on the Dime. [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 4:58 PM PST - 36 comments



Circle The Cat (flash friday fun) It's not like anyone was going to be productive at work today anyway, right?
posted by elizardbits at 12:12 PM PST - 66 comments

The 2012 Legatum Prosperity Index ranks the wealth and well-being of the world's countries according to eight sub-indexes. Interestingly, you may individually re-weight those eight sub-indexes, in order to create country rankings closer to your own values and priorities. Foreign Policy has more on the Prosperity Index's unique approach to the ultimately very silly art of numerically ranking nation-states.
posted by Sticherbeast at 11:54 AM PST - 25 comments

Gaming made me - RPS writer Patricia Hernandez on how Fallout 2 shaped her world view, her politics and her sexuality.
posted by Artw at 10:52 AM PST - 88 comments

"Every time I run [Amazon Random Shopper], I give it a set budget, say $50. It grabs a random word ... then runs an Amazon search based on that word. It then looks for every paperback book, CD, and DVD in the results list, and buys the first thing that’s under budget."
posted by griphus at 9:07 AM PST - 52 comments

Bryce Courtenay, prolific Australian author, dies. "Courtenay, who has been suffering from stomach cancer, died in Canberra late on Thursday with his wife Christine, son Adam, and his family pets, Tim the dog and Cardamon the Burmese cat, by his side. He was 79."
posted by Fizz at 5:43 AM PST - 15 comments

A familiar sight in many post-Thanksgiving households: Sloopy the dancing Chihuahua (SLYT).
posted by fight or flight at 5:30 AM PST - 24 comments

No more CTRL+ALT+DEL+. Tim Buckley is rebooting his Web-Comic. Interesting explanation of why in his blog post (scroll down to the Post titles Endings.
posted by lloyder at 4:52 AM PST - 60 comments

Lets Swim To Work! "Centuries of boat traffic, heavy industry, sewage runoff and toxic dumping have ingrained in us the idea that urban waterways are not places for people. Even as cities have rushed to the water’s edge over the past couple of decades, building elaborate waterfront parks and esplanades, few have taken the next logical step: encouraging residents to dive in." [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:57 AM PST - 42 comments

When Jim Holmberg fractured his skull after a motorcycle accident in the 1960s, it left him several things - deafness in the left ear, a belief in cosmic forces that had cured the resulting spinal meningitis, and an astonishing sopranino range in his voice. [more inside]
posted by solarion at 3:53 AM PST - 10 comments



Can’t get enough of these videos from AsapSCIENCE. Here’s an earlier one from the Your Brain On Drugs series entitled marijuana. I was pretty stoned when watching it and ended up cracking up at the funny cats – total highlight for me. Can’t remember the gist, but you should definitely check it out. (Text Via) (slyt)
posted by infini at 12:37 AM PST - 13 comments

November 22


SAN DIEGO - A long line of people snaked out of a North County machine shop on a recent Sunday. The customers were there to build a gun. (embedded video) [more inside]
posted by 445supermag at 7:37 PM PST - 49 comments

Is his face always like that? It's like he washed it with a powdered doughnut. The Confused Notes of a Twilight Newbie Forced to Watch Breaking Dawn – Part 2
posted by Egg Shen at 4:53 PM PST - 237 comments

In February 1964, when the Beatles played the Ed Sullivan Show, record executives in America were faced with the question of how to get a piece of the Beatlemania action. The result was an explosion of knockoff Beatles records, promising things like “The Beetle Beat”, “Beat-A-Mania” and “The Original Liverpool Sound”, credited (often in type far smaller than the famous song titles) to bands with names like The Bearcuts, The Manchesters, The Moptops and the Liverpool Kids, and featuring cover models with varyingly plausible approximations of the Beatles' haircuts, as detailed by WFMU's Gaylord Fields (SLVimeo).
posted by acb at 4:43 PM PST - 34 comments

"Before playing he explained the story behind the song, which was a journey – it was in 1993 as a 12 year old that he was able to return to Beirut alone for the first time (his parents having fled to Paris during the war) and he wandered the streets with his walkman, earphones plugged but playing no music, instead composing music in his mind and looking at the bullet marks in the walls of homes which had been rebuilt so many times over during the war that not much of the devastation was actually visible.. but after walking for a while, he sat and rested for some time.. and then suddenly when he got up again he noticed a street in front of him completely devastated and abandoned – something that he had actually been looking to see – but in that moment he was listening to (having just discovered) Led Zepplin and the combination of seeing the devastation and the music actually scared him and he ran away. And so this song tells that journey." The song is Beirut, and he is Ibrahim Maalouf. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:06 PM PST - 14 comments


Does bouncing your tea bag substantially improve your cup of tea? Finally, science is brought to bear on this important question.
posted by Freen at 11:34 AM PST - 97 comments


DJ Focus couldn't wait to get back to Sierra Leone. AKA Kelvin Doe, this young man makes beautiful, functional and very useful electronic devices out of trash found in his native Sierra Leone. It's not clear whether he or M.I.T. was more impressed after his visit there.
posted by not_that_epiphanius at 11:06 AM PST - 6 comments

Google and Bing autocomplete what they think they know what you're thinking. Sometimes they get it wrong. "People who study online behavior also say the autocomplete feature reveals broader patterns, including indications that the questions people ask of search engines often veer into the sensitive and politically incorrect." previously
posted by Xurando at 10:47 AM PST - 29 comments

Anna Sumner’s craving for sleep began when she was an 18-year-old high school senior. She thought nothing of it. When it followed her to college, she blamed it on stress. She was working so hard, she told herself, her body just needed the extra rest. But it was more than that. She would chose naps over eating lunch, working out, or being with friends. Every night after dinner, she came back to her dorm room to sleep. If her parents called on those evenings, her roommate would cover for her, telling them she had gone to the library.
posted by latkes at 10:38 AM PST - 20 comments

Jazz prodigy Austin Peralta has died. Announcement and links to his music at Brainfeeder. Peralta contributed to Flying Lotus' recent album Until the Quiet comes; on Twitter this morning Flying Lotus wrote "it kills me to type that we lost a member of our family, Austin Peralta. I don't really have the right words right now." From Fact: "In his tragically short life, the California native had proved himself to be a fearsome and precocious talent. At 15 years old, Peralta was already touring the world with his own trio, and performing alongside legends like Chick Corea and Omar Hakim. Whilst still at high school, Peralta headed up ensembles featuring luminaries like Ron Carter and Buster Williams. He also released two LPs (2006′s Maiden Voyage and Mantra) in Japan before the age of 16." His entry on Wikipedia. Tribute from Frank Ocean.
posted by jokeefe at 10:10 AM PST - 12 comments

Maximum gravy: Vi hart, daughter of George & mathemusician at The Khan Academy, cooks mathematical potatoes to go along with a symmetrical Turduckenen. Have a delicious Thanksgiving. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 9:09 AM PST - 21 comments


Alicia Keys covers The Gummi Bears theme.
posted by nadawi at 7:52 AM PST - 36 comments


Sandy Island is in the Coral Sea, between New Calendonia and Australia, and is visible on Google maps. The only problem is it doesn't exist.
posted by notme at 7:20 AM PST - 38 comments


Heyride, an Austin startup that is revolutionizing the way you get around town, received a cease-and-desist from the City of Austin. This follows Uber's forced NYC shutdown last month, along with California sending cease-and-desists to Lyft, Sidecar, and Tickengo. Paul Carr links these disruptive technologies to Metafilter fave author Ayn Rand (previous thread); it's not the first time he's taken on the nerds. Wharton and Wired weigh in.
posted by jkolko at 6:07 AM PST - 66 comments

During the Thanksgiving time of year, our thoughts often turn to Alice, after all, it was her meal that may have inspired a movement. Sometimes our thoughts are 16 minutes long, sometimes we get all 22 minutes of wonderfulness. What happened after that? [more inside]
posted by HuronBob at 5:32 AM PST - 28 comments

November 21


What does proper authorization to access a computer system mean? Robert Graham of Errata Security writes about the recent conviction of Andrew Auernheimer (aka weev) for “hacking” AT&T. Two years ago, weev discovered a bug in AT&T's website that exposed the email addresses of customers with iPads. According to weev, the flaw was reported as per responsible disclosure practices by first informing AT&T before bringing it public. However the FBI investigated and arrested him under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA). On 20th November 2012, he was found guilty of identity fraud and conspiracy to access a computer without authorization.
posted by destrius at 10:00 PM PST - 114 comments

As if ticks weren't awful/awesome enough already, the Lone Star Tick (Amblyomma americanum) has been shown to transmit an allergy to meat in humans. [more inside]
posted by wormwood23 at 8:10 PM PST - 34 comments

It may be the most notorious Thanksgiving promotion of all time. It is the 40th best television episode of all time. It's available in (semi-)entirety on HULU. And the classic TV blog offers an oral history. Happy thanksgiving, and, as God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 5:59 PM PST - 102 comments

The UN has condemned extrajudicial killing on the basis of gender identity. [more inside]
posted by jiawen at 5:35 PM PST - 33 comments

Things I Learned as a Field Biologist #65: "Collecting the fecal matter of your study subject is an art form, and not nearly as simple as one might think. In a perfect world, you would look through your binoculars into the canopy and see the prized excrement emerge freshly from the posterior of the exact animal you’re hoping to sample. This ample and cohesive bolus will fall magically, directly, to the ground at your feet, making for easy and immediate retrieval…"
posted by ChuraChura at 5:29 PM PST - 27 comments

A Note From Our Founder.
"Friends—When I started this company, it was with one goal in mind: To market a high-quality, fun, innovative novelty T-shirt that combined the face of late night titan Jay Leno with the iconic imagery of similarly-first-named Cuban revolutionary Che Guevara.
We went live with a soft-launch of our product late last night (November 19th), a T-Shirt we dubbed the Che Leno.
The response was overwhelmingly one of negativity and confusion." [more inside]
posted by Atom Eyes at 5:12 PM PST - 94 comments

Before The Pleasure Garden (Alfred Hitchcock's directorial debut) was released in 1925, Hitchcock's worked on a numerous silent films as both an assistant director and an art director. Now recently recovered and restored footage from one of his oldest, long-lost films, 1924's The White Shadow, has been released online, and you can watch it now at Film Preservation. (Via io9). Running time: About 43 minutes.
posted by Mezentian at 4:58 PM PST - 3 comments

With their brutal, simple riffs and aggressive, fast tempos, Accept were one of the top metal bands of the early '80s, and a major influence on the development of thrash. Led by the unique vocal stylings of screeching banshee Udo Dirkschneider, the band forged an instantly recognizable sound and was notorious as one of the decade's fiercest live acts. - AllMusic
posted by Egg Shen at 4:42 PM PST - 29 comments

The state of Illinois is facing a $95 billion (and rising) unfunded pension liability. Governor Pat Quinn, in a bold attempt to get Illinoisians excited about pension reform, has unveiled a new mascot: Squeezy the Pension Python [YouTube]
posted by obscurator at 4:13 PM PST - 46 comments


Juilliard Releases Banned Repertoire List. "The vocal repertoire ban extends to the entire Bel Canto literature, all 24 Italian Songs and Arias, half of Schubert’s vocal output, and any Mozart aria containing a trill."
posted by ariel_caliban at 2:01 PM PST - 69 comments

Instant Google Street View . Type something (slowly) and teleport around the world.
posted by Sparx at 1:58 PM PST - 50 comments

The 78 Project With just one microphone, one authentic 1930′s PRESTO direct-to-disc recorder, and one blank lacquer disk, musicians are given the opportunity to make a recording anywhere they choose. Random example: Joe Henry and Lisa Hannigan - Red River Valley
posted by swordfishtrombones at 1:56 PM PST - 6 comments

Casey Legler is 6'2" has a neck tattoo, dark partially shaved hair, and a successful career as a male model. Which makes her fairly unique.
posted by bitdamaged at 1:35 PM PST - 32 comments


What would combat in space really be like?
posted by Chrysostom at 12:55 PM PST - 122 comments

Just when you thought it was safe to open a book... it's the Literary Review's annual Bad Sex Award! (Previously) This year's nominees include works by Tom Wolfe, Ben Masters, Nicola Barker, Paul Mason, Nancy Huston, Craig Raine, Nicholas Coleridge, and Sam Mills. Not on the list? J.K. Rowling's The Casual Vacancy--despite "a couple of queasy moments," in the words of TLR senior editor Jonathan Beckman--and E.L. James' Fifty Shades of Grey, since the award "is not intended to cover pornographic or expressly erotic literature." Snippets from the nominated books can be found at the Guardian link.
posted by Cash4Lead at 12:34 PM PST - 33 comments


Who to root for now? As a result of FOX/News Corp. going into business with the New York Yankees through by acquiring a 49% stake in the Yankees's regional sports network, Craig Robinson disavows his Yankees fandom, and goes in search of a new baseball team to which to swear his allegiance and passion.
posted by dry white toast at 11:36 AM PST - 93 comments

Old chap playing the spoons to Faithless. Pity there's no tipjar :-(
posted by ironjelly at 11:29 AM PST - 12 comments

Early English Laws is a project to publish online and in print new editions and translations of all English legal codes, edicts, and treatises produced up to the time of Magna Carta 1215. [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 10:56 AM PST - 7 comments

The American Association for the Advancement of Science has named the 2012 winners of their science journalism award. The winning text, radio and TV segments -- which cover subjects ranging from bat ecology to nuclear power post-Fukushima -- are all free access. [more inside]
posted by metaBugs at 10:55 AM PST - 2 comments

During his tenure as George W. Bush's campaign manager and later as chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), Ken Mehlman helped push an anti-gay agenda which eventually led to legislation that banned same-sex marriage in 21 states. He came out of the closet in 2010. Since then, he's openly supported gay marriage. Now, his newest endeavor, Project Right Side, is trying to attract conservatives to the fight for marriage equality. He discusses the non-profit's goals in a WSJ editorial: Making the Same-Sex Case. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:49 AM PST - 58 comments

Yes, he only shot 48% from the floor, but last night, Jack Taylor, a sophomore guard from Div. III Grinnell College in Iowa, set a new men's NCAA basketball scoring record (on any level) by dropping in 138 points in Grinnell's 179-104 win over Faith Baptist Bible. This is the "insane" boxscore. You know a player has a big game when an opposing player (Faith Baptist Bible's David Larson) scores 70 points and becomes a footnote. So how'd he do it? [more inside]
posted by spock at 9:50 AM PST - 63 comments

Hungarian photographer David Nemcsik has created a series called the "Levitation Project" where he invites his friends to answer the question "where were you in your last dream?" and then attempts to recreate the surrealism of experience by having them float in midair at the location. [via] [more inside]
posted by quin at 9:23 AM PST - 16 comments


Davesecretary of TIME FOR SOME STORIES fame (previously) decided to spend a year in a smallish Chinese city to figure out what he wanted to do with his life. He slowly realizes that he's not having a very good time.
posted by The Whelk at 8:32 AM PST - 87 comments

World's Most Dangerous Ride (SLYT) One mistake and it's a free fall to your death. Motology's Adam Riemann rides one of the scariest Himalayan trails you'll ever see.
posted by JujuB at 8:10 AM PST - 65 comments

Steven Pinker is apparently writing a science/academic writing style guide of sorts based on insights from psychology. Here is an hour-plus long video of Pinker discussing the book at MIT.
posted by AceRock at 7:49 AM PST - 19 comments

It's the splashing, not the popping. What if American student debt is just too profitable and secure to admit any systemic reform? An interesting and gloomy argument against the higher education bubble theory. [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 7:25 AM PST - 157 comments

News today is Lance Armstrong can no longer claim an honorary doctorate from Tufts University. Other recent notable rescissions: UMass rescinded Robert Mugabe's, and University of Bedfordshire rescinded Jimmy Savile's. Nortwestern U also rescinded an offer of an honorary degree to Rev. Jeremiah Wright. In the win column, two universities were pressured to rescind offers of doctorates, but decided to proceed and award degrees: Duke University to Susan Komen's Nancy Brinker, and CUNY to playwright Tony Kushner.
posted by surplus at 6:41 AM PST - 35 comments

I am Hazara Close to 1,000 Hazaras have been killed in targeted attacks and shootings in [Quetta] the capital of Pakistan’s largest province [Baluchistan]. The indifference towards the atrocities has forced this shrinking community to take escape routes and gamble between life at the promised land and death at the ocean. Dawn, Pakistan's largest English-language daily, puts together an essay accompanied by short videos (subtitled in English).
posted by bardophile at 6:28 AM PST - 8 comments

Randobot [Flash] is a "reimagined" take on the Rockman/Mega Man Saga: the player must guide a defective automaton through a fortified compound, while collecting energy cores and dodging enemies. As the machine was rushed out of development, software patches will have to be transmitted wirelessly to the unit at critical points of the enemy base. In spite of any and all modifications performed, there will still be a chance of the drone failing to perform the most rudimentary tasks.
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:47 AM PST - 25 comments

Bassethoundsrunning tumblr is most definitely the most hilarious animal tumblr ever. So glad I found this again!
posted by thylacinthine at 2:47 AM PST - 33 comments

After 65 Years The Hollywood Reporter addresses its role in the hollywood blacklist, including an apology from W.R. Wilkerson III, son of THR founder Billy Wilkerson whose "A Vote For Joe Stalin" editorial named writers such as Dalton Trumbo, Lester Cole, Howard Koch and John Howard Lawson as communist sympathisers.
posted by Artw at 12:36 AM PST - 8 comments

November 20

Hey! The Bad Brains have a new album out! You can give it a spin here at ye olde You Tubes.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 10:49 PM PST - 35 comments

It’s 6pm on Friday,and I’m writing to a few thousand friends I have not met yet. I am writing to ask them to change our plans and meet a little while later. Here’s the thing. I have a dog Janet, and she’s been ill for almost two years now, as a tumor has been idling in her chest, growing ever so slowly. She’s almost 14 years old now.I got her when she was 4 months old. Fiona Apple postpones her South American tour in order to stay with her companion dog during her final days. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:21 PM PST - 67 comments

Just off the trail in Chestnut Ridge Park, New York, there is a small waterfall called the Eternal Flame Falls. Natural gas wells up from the earth and escapes just underneath the waterfall. Once in a while, it goes out and is re-lit by the next hiker that comes along.
posted by empatterson at 8:03 PM PST - 31 comments

100 years ago today, on November 20th 1912, a disgruntled rail worker named Carl Warr walked into the Los Angeles county jail carrying an infernal machine loaded with sixty sticks of the highest power dynamite made... Los Angeles Examiner photographer E. J. Spencer risked his life to capture the mad bomber with his plate camera, earning him a rare (for the time) newspaper photography credit, and what is perhaps the most iconic Mad Bomber photo ever.
posted by Catblack at 7:57 PM PST - 26 comments


Barkley's New Boots
posted by griphus at 7:32 PM PST - 36 comments



England has a drinking problem. Since 1990, teenage alcohol consumption has doubled. Since World War II, alcohol intake for the population as a whole has doubled, with a third of that increase occurring since just 1995. [...] The United States, although no stranger to alcohol abuse problems, is in comparatively better shape. A third of the country does not drink, and teenage drinking is at a historic low.
How a vertically integrated alcohol industry is to blame, and why the US could find itself in the same position soon.
posted by spiderskull at 6:41 PM PST - 96 comments

Are Social Impact Bonds a good way to invest in public services? "Imagine a contract where private investors are paid by the government if there's a decrease in homelessness or convicts re-offending. It's a an idea that's taking shape in the UK and some US states. And now the Canadian government is considering piloting social impact bonds. Critics say it's a way of governments shirking their responsibilities." CBC's "The Current" reports. [more inside]
posted by flex at 4:34 PM PST - 29 comments


In a report released [Tuesday], the World Bank analyzed the consequences of allowing temperatures to reach 4°C above pre-industrial levels by the end of the century. ... the report's authors admit that predications are a challenge. Still, they do their best to try to paint a picture, and boy, is it grim.
posted by Egg Shen at 3:06 PM PST - 84 comments

in 1977 Amsterdam got its first Underground/metro line. The trains that first ran on that line, the "zilvermeeuwen or seagulls" are still in service some thirtyodd years later and have gotten a midlife update a few years ago. Part of that update included a new anti-graffitti skin, but also the transformation of some fortyfour carriages into art shows, featuring artworks and photographs by fortyfour Dutch artists.
posted by MartinWisse at 2:29 PM PST - 10 comments

The US does not have a spending problem, we have a distribution problem "Forty years from now, America will be twice as rich on average as we are today. But most of that wealth will go to the very richest households. We only have a budget crisis if they refuse to pay higher taxes... So the real point isn't that we can't afford Social Security and Medicare. It's that some people don't want to pay the higher taxes necessary to maintain Social Security and Medicare. This is a question of distribution, pure and simple."
posted by bookman117 at 2:21 PM PST - 53 comments

Cory Booker, mayor of Newark, NJ, will spend a week or longer living on food stamps, in response to a Twitter user who told him that, quote, "nutrition is not a responsibility of the government." [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 1:59 PM PST - 117 comments

'On April 12, 1987, Michael Morton sat down to write a letter. “Your Honor,” he began, “I’m sure you remember me. I was convicted of murder, in your court, in February of this year.” He wrote each word carefully, sitting cross-legged on the top bunk in his cell at the Wynne prison unit, in Huntsville. “I have been told that you are to decide if I am ever to see my son, Eric, again. I haven’t seen him since the morning that I was convicted. I miss him terribly and I know that he has been asking about me.” Referring to the declarations of innocence he had made during his trial, he continued, “I must reiterate my innocence. I did NOT kill my wife.' [more inside]
posted by mahershalal at 1:51 PM PST - 35 comments

Giant. Spider. Puppet. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by secretdark at 1:40 PM PST - 30 comments

But back in 1996, users of the proto-Web community Usenet got spammed with messages that reached an almost transcendent level of bizarre—a weirdness so precise it implied the influence of a very human intelligence. “Markovian Parallax Denigrate,” read the title of each post, followed by a mountain of seemingly meaningless word spew:
Unraveling the Internet’s oldest and weirdest mystery
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:52 PM PST - 68 comments

Searching for Doggerland. "For decades North Sea boatmen have been dragging up traces of a vanished world in their nets. Now archaeologists are asking a timely question: What happens to people as their homeland disappears beneath a rising tide?"
posted by homunculus at 12:50 PM PST - 10 comments

In 1993, 18-year-old Trevell Coleman shot a man in East Harlem and fled the scene. In the following years, he became part of the New York City rap community and eventually signed with Bad Boy Records, though he never stopped wondering what had happened to the man he'd shot. At the end of 2010, Coleman decided to find out. [more inside]
posted by catlet at 12:13 PM PST - 38 comments

A third of the UK's leading people went to Oxford or Cambridge universities and four out of every 10 of them attended private schools, a report suggests. [BBC] [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 12:09 PM PST - 46 comments

Mathgen is a program to randomly generate professional-looking mathematics papers, including theorems, proofs, equations, discussion, and references. Try Mathgen for yourself! (PDF example) It’s a fork of SCIgen, a program which generates random papers in computer science. Surprisingly, Mathgen has already had it's first randomly-generated paper accepted by a "journal".
posted by DynamiteToast at 11:28 AM PST - 51 comments

"We have little trouble recognizing that a chess grandmaster’s victory over a novice is skill, as well as assuming that Paul the octopus’s ability to predict World Cup games is due to chance. But what about everything else?" [Luck and Skill Untangled: The Science of Success]
posted by vidur at 11:15 AM PST - 16 comments

Facewatch is the National low level crime reporting and image sharing system for businesses. (Vimeo)

One UK-based firm has combined facial recognition and CCTV technology to give businesses the ability to identify and track "repeat offenders" on-site. With endorsements from Philadelphia's police commissioner, the Chief Crown Prosecutor of London and Crimestoppers among others, the technology gotten its fair share of press. (And yes, there's an app for that.)
posted by beaucoupkevin at 9:37 AM PST - 19 comments

I will tell you it cost $42 million just to print Newsweek. Before you’ve even engaged one writer, or one copy editor, or one picture editor. Forty-two million dollars.

Long, wide-ranging interview of Tina Brown by Michael Kinsley.
posted by Chrysostom at 8:22 AM PST - 48 comments

The UK Office of National Statistics is measuring and reporting on more than just money as a measure of national success The ONS has started a process of measuring and reporting on national wellbeing. They've also made some very pretty animations with the information
posted by Gilgongo at 7:02 AM PST - 11 comments

A simple, beautiful solution to clearing landmines in Afghanistan. From the public filmmaker competition section of Focus Forward, a series of documentaries about people who are changing the world.
posted by bwerdmuller at 6:45 AM PST - 80 comments

Baby Mop is one of the strangest products I've ever seen. I have no idea how parents got their infants wedged into cleaning supplies, or why.
posted by Smart Dalek at 2:34 AM PST - 51 comments

The Carp and the Seagull is an interactive short film by Evan Boehm and Nexus Interactive Arts featuring original score and sound design by Plaid.
Uses WebGL and apparently optimized for Chrome so not sure if it works in anything else.
The Carp and the Seagull on The Creators Project and via an article on creativeapplications.net
posted by juv3nal at 2:24 AM PST - 3 comments


The BBC reports that the last typewriter to be built in the UK (according to its manufacturers) has been donated to London's Science Museum. "Brother said it had stopped making typewriters because demand had fallen to 30 a day, with most of those being sold in the US." [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 12:25 AM PST - 97 comments

November 19

"In 1925, California supplied [much] of the world’s oil (Google quickview, original PDF) and much of it came from pumps in the Southland (quickview, PDF). To date, around 9 billion barrels of oil have been produced in the Los Angeles area. There are still over 30,000 active wells here pumping around 230 million barrels of oil a year, making Los Angeles County the second most productive oil county in California (although the quality of the oil here is somewhat low by today’s standards). There are 55 known oil fields in the Los Angeles area and 11 of them are located in a very urban context. This setting makes the oil extraction process in Los Angeles unique." Things to do in LA: Urban Oil Wells In Los Angeles, Part I and Part II. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:43 PM PST - 43 comments

Be it the United States or the European Union, most Western countries are so highly indebted today that the markets have a greater say in their policies than the people. Why are democratic countries so pathetic when it comes to managing their money sustainably? This clear, well-written essay in Der Speigel lays out the current debt crisis - along with current, proposed solutions - in an understandable manner. Not included among the so-far-proposed solutions is one other that has opened up a veritable financial market and debt Pandora's Box - i.e. a central bank debt jubilee.
posted by Vibrissae at 9:01 PM PST - 118 comments

And in today's fun IPR news we have Games Workshop VS. Chapterhouse Studios. In which the plaintiffs lawyers are claiming (p.44) copyright and design dress on common iconography such as crosses, skulls and riveted armor. But to get at the gist of it, what makes third party miniature wargaming accessories different to bodykits? Where doth this madness lead. [more inside]
posted by xcasex at 8:36 PM PST - 55 comments

In the wake of historic victories on marriage equality in Maryland, Maine, and Washington state, and the defeat of an anti-equality constitutional amendment in Minnesota, LGBTQ people are thanking their straight family and friends for their contributions to the cause. [more inside]
posted by jeoc at 7:12 PM PST - 36 comments


Enforcing your visual copyright is easier if you register your work. Li Zheng taught fine art at Appalachian State 20 years ago, then began selling his paintings to galleries. After a hiatus in China, he returned to America to discover one of his paintings is being mass produced and sold at Kohl's, JC Penneys, and at least 2 dozen other retailers, including -- busted! -- artheist.com "it's a steal!" Main link has original, copy, and describes his uphill legal battle.
posted by surplus at 6:46 PM PST - 14 comments

The Big Bang Theory Flash Mob: Short Version. Full Compilation. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 6:22 PM PST - 46 comments

Scientists on Tasmania's Maria Island caught footage of an echidna playing in the water. Stay spikey, stay cute!
posted by barnacles at 6:20 PM PST - 20 comments

XKCD explains explains the major parts of the Saturn V rocket.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:11 PM PST - 44 comments

Some random, wet images: A seahorse on a diver’s watch.
A diver hitting an Olympic pool
Mass stingray migration off Baja
Two streams of water colliding
A photographer in the rain
Waiting for the bubble to burst
Close up of a wave
Bathtime at a refugee camp Kutupalong, Bangladesh
Water being released from a dam to prevent flooding in Jiyuan, China
Transparent Montana lake, (and more) [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 5:49 PM PST - 26 comments

Fire whirls, aka fire tornadoes, aka fire devils, aka firenados, are frequently photographed but have only recently been scientifically validated based on data from the 2003 Canberra fires in Queensland, Australia. Although rare, the physics behind firenados is straightforward enough to create your own. The most devastating fire tornado was the "dragon twist" that devastated Tokyo immediately following the great Japan quake of 1923.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 5:05 PM PST - 25 comments

Vanishing Spirits - The Dried Remains of Single Malt Scotch. [more inside]
posted by jammy at 4:59 PM PST - 16 comments

Gravity's Rainbow won the National Book Award in 1974. Its author, the famously reclusive Thomas Pynchon, did not appear at the awards ceremony, but instead sent comedian Irwin Corey in his place who accepted the award on behalf of one "Richard Python." At the end of the speech, a streaker ran nude across the stage. [more inside]
posted by deathpanels at 4:44 PM PST - 42 comments

How to get less from more. A modest website by an ordinary M.D. who seems to have an extraordinary curiosity. The next time someone complains to you about socialized medicine vs. the efficiencies of the free market don't shoot them just point them here. An Alice in Wonderland view of the "Best healthcare in the world". TLDR: You don't have to read the screed you can watch it. [more inside]
posted by pdxpogo at 4:31 PM PST - 40 comments

The fact that many of the actors in Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight Trilogy have previously portrayed high school characters has resulted in an extended trailer mashup resetting the Batman series as a teen comedy.
posted by The Whelk at 2:11 PM PST - 41 comments

Two years ago, Rachel McCarthy James' (RMJ) Deeply Problematic, "a feminist blog that seeks to examine and analyze the treatment of problematized bodies in society and the media", ran a series of posts examining Jeph Jacques webcomic Questionable Content looking at the women in QC, their bodies, their sexuality and identity and finally, the way Jacques normalised disability in it. Largely positive, RMJ did put a caveat on the lack of out trans characters in the comic. Today that lack was addressed as relatively new character Claire came out as trans. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 1:57 PM PST - 113 comments


Nanoparticles covered in proteins trick immune system. A breakthrough new experimental treatment that uses nanoparticles covered with proteins to trick the immune system, managed to stop it attacking myelin and halt disease progression in mice with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (MS). The researchers say the approach may also be applicable to other auto-immune diseases such as asthma and type 1 diabetes.
posted by aleph at 1:14 PM PST - 23 comments

Looking for a project for the winter? Have some spare room and hand tools? Why not build a boat? [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:47 PM PST - 47 comments


Steal My Book! Why I'm abetting a rogue translation of my novel. This is the story of how author Peter Mountford discovered that his novel A Young Man's Guide to Late Capitalism was being translated for an unauthorized e-book version, and why he decided to help the struggling Russian-language translator. Audio interview with Mountford on CBC Radio's Q.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:13 PM PST - 4 comments


Dull Tool is the new track from Fiona Apple written for This is 40, the follow up to Judd Apatow's Knocked Up. The song is already being touted as a potential Oscar winner.
posted by Panjandrum at 12:01 PM PST - 27 comments

A Norwegian group called Radi-Aid has launched an appeal to ship radiators from Africa to Norway. They have also released a video to highlight the plight of freezing children during Norway's harsh winter. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan at 11:23 AM PST - 34 comments

In an attempt to make itself less desirable to copyright infringers, starting November 27, RapidShare will begin capping non-paying users at 1 gigabyte of outbound downloads per day. (Paying users will have 30 gigabytes.) Meanwhile, controversial Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom is planning a January debut for his new Mega service - which plans to insure itself against litigation by having all hosted material encrypted by the uploader's browser before transmission.
posted by Egg Shen at 11:02 AM PST - 68 comments

You've heard from quite a few sources as to why and how Romney lost, including Romney himself. But technology played a role in the loss, too. According to Sean Gallagher in Ars Technica, Romney's campaign was badly outgunned when it came to its technology infrastructure, relying heavily on outsourced IT and consultants. The disastrous Project ORCA, an attempted streamlining of the age old "strike list" process for contacting those who haven't voted yet, likely did not help. [more inside]
posted by Lieber Frau at 10:38 AM PST - 130 comments

38 Fake Film Titles to the Tune of "Bob" by 'Weird Al' Yankovic made by Oliver Smith in which an aspiring animator has created a tour-de-force (and tour-de-farce) showreel of kinetic typography and film homages using the palindromic lyrics of The Weird One's Bob Dylan riff (with a few actor and director credits tossed in to remind you what he's referencing). If Oliver Smith doesn't get a ton of job offers from this, the animation biz is broken.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:31 AM PST - 16 comments


BBC's Letter From America archives replenished by Newquay man. Most not kept by the BBC. Amazing piece of radio in and of itself. [previously].
posted by feelinglistless at 9:20 AM PST - 7 comments

Guys don't want casual sex: "This stereotype 'tells us that guys are primarily interested in sex, not relationships... This contributes to the notion that guys are emotional clods who are incapable of connecting with their partners because, hey, they’re just guys, and guys are only interested in sex.'... the Wake Forest University professor lays out the current data on young men’s sexual desires and behavior to make a case against this insidious stereotype." Salon interviews Andrew Smiler, author of Challenging Casanova: Beyond the Stereotype of the Promiscuous Young Male. [more inside]
posted by flex at 9:02 AM PST - 122 comments

Dan Bricklin, father of the spreadsheet, discovers VisiCalc running in a JavaScript emulator of an IBM PC 5150. [more inside]
posted by backseatpilot at 7:50 AM PST - 34 comments



For their club’s big debut this semester, the cadets at the United States Air Force Academy hammered out talking points, printed fliers and hung their logo, a rainbow-colored globe, in their booth in Arnold Hall. Then they held their breath.

On the day known as Blue Rush, when incoming freshmen learn about extracurricular activities, Lydia Hill and Brandon Reams were making history, introducing their fellow cadets to Spectrum, the academy’s first club for gay, lesbian and bisexual students and their straight friends and supporters.
[SLNYT]
posted by hippybear at 6:02 AM PST - 20 comments

SLYT of a Portuguese performance of the Wizard of Oz with a missing dance number added to the show.
posted by jrishel at 5:57 AM PST - 18 comments

poonikins the magic warrior princess (SLequinegangstermachinma)
posted by roofus at 5:38 AM PST - 11 comments

Five years ago today Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.com released the Amazon Kindle, a move that would revolutionize the publishing industry. While often controversial, most recently for its international tax avoidance schemes, Amazon has been very successful and has made millions for its founder. What has Bezos done with some of his tax-free millions? Well for one, he launched and landed a rocket vertically, and posted the video to YouTube, just yesterday. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan at 3:49 AM PST - 99 comments

Airing in 1979, The New Sound of Music was a BBC documentary which depicted and demonstrated the history of recorded and manipulated music, from the earliest paper rolls to electronic synthesizers and the cutting and manipulation of tape. [more inside]
posted by Pope Guilty at 3:35 AM PST - 13 comments

Bees and a species of bird can solve the traveling salesman problem "It’s Saturday; you’ve got errands to run. Your spouse wants bread from the bakery, you need to pick up the dry cleaning, your kids need new shoes, and you’ve got a dentist appointment. None of this is any fun, so you might as well do it as quickly as possible by calculating the fastest and most efficient route that takes you to each stop... Menger and Whitney both discovered that the number of possible routes between stops increases exponentially with each additional destination. In a typical model, for instance, three stops yield six routes, while eight stops yield 40,320... By setting up five artificial flowers in a pentagon shape and tracking each bee’s path, researchers discovered that every bee optimized its route, visiting the highest-reward flowers in the shortest possible amount of time." [more inside]
posted by bookman117 at 3:11 AM PST - 34 comments

With the recent release of the new instalment of first-person shooter goliath Call of Duty, Activision is poised to make another cool gazillion dollars or so. In fact, the game is popular with many gamers except for one significant group -- the professional ones: "The new games can bring all kinds of changes. Guns fire differently. The physics of the world have been tweaked. This makes it challenging and fun for casual players, but it’s a nightmare scenario for pros. The most important thing for professionals is to be able to practice and play the same game, with the same rules, for years and years to hone their skills. (Imagine if they completely changed the rules of Major League Baseball every year, using different balls, spacing the bases further apart, adding a fourth outfielder.)"
posted by bardic at 2:29 AM PST - 57 comments

November 18

Korean high school. What's life like for a Korean student? In one of the most competitive societies in the world, how does one find their place? What does it take to achieve your aspirations and goals? [more inside]
posted by hellomina at 11:57 PM PST - 55 comments

One dealt with her near-death experience by forcing herself to stare at a screensaver of the shark that ravaged her body. Another let the bear finish the job 22 years afterwards. People respond to life-threatening traumas in different ways, as documented by The Guardian in Life after near-death: why surviving is only the beginning.
posted by mreleganza at 11:05 PM PST - 50 comments

As a function of fear and pre-emptive shame, ironic living bespeaks cultural numbness, resignation and defeat. If life has become merely a clutter of kitsch objects, an endless series of sarcastic jokes and pop references, a competition to see who can care the least (or, at minimum, a performance of such a competition), it seems we’ve made a collective misstep. Could this be the cause of our emptiness and existential malaise? Or a symptom? - How to Live Without Irony
posted by beisny at 9:34 PM PST - 161 comments

For any parent concerned about what their teen does online, the huge popularity of the young man you are about to meet may be deeply disturbing. [more inside]
posted by the young rope-rider at 7:45 PM PST - 212 comments


"In a 2006 interview David Foster Wallace said, “it seems significant that we don’t want things to be quiet, ever, anymore.” Stores and restaurants have their ubiquitous Muzak or satellite radio; bars have anywhere between 1 and 17 TVs blaring Fox and soccer; ... Even some libraries, ... now have music and special segregated areas designated for “quiet study,” which is what a library used to be. ... People are louder, too. They complain at length and in detail about their divorces ... a foot away from you in restaurants. ... People practice rap lyrics on the bus or the subway, barking doggerel along with their iPods .... Respecting shared public space is becoming ... quaintly archaic .... philosopher Aaron James posits that people with this personality type are so infuriating ... because they refuse to recognize the moral reality of those around them." [previously]
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 6:40 PM PST - 121 comments


Welcome to GONO.com (short for "Go to Nostalgiaville"), home to the Museum of Beverage Containers and Advertising. Curator Tom Bates welcomes you. [more inside]
posted by obscurator at 3:31 PM PST - 4 comments

"I wish to dispel the notion that women are “more emotional.” I don’t think we are. I think that the emotions women stereotypically express are what men call “emotions,” and the emotions that men typically express are somehow considered by men to be something else." Jen Dziura in The Gloss: "When men are too emotional to have a rational argument."
posted by escabeche at 1:54 PM PST - 85 comments


In 1977 Dial Press of New York published Robert Mayer’s first novel, Superfolks. It was, amongst other things, a story of a middle-aged man coming to terms with his life, an enormous collection of 1970s pop-culture references, some now lost to the mists of time, and a satire on certain aspects of the comic superhero, but would probably be largely unheard of these days if it wasn’t for the fact that it is regularly mentioned for its supposed influence on a young Alan Moore and his work, particularly on Watchmen, Marvelman, and his Superman story, Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow? Alan Moore and Superfolks: Part 1: The Case for the Prosecution, Part 2: The Case for the Defence, Part 3: The Strange Case of Grant Morrison and Alan Moore.
posted by Artw at 1:22 PM PST - 37 comments


Harold Lash is an abstract painter whose works are wild and startlingly vivid. There are repeated themes of flowers and cities and ships and are often obsessively patriotic. I particularly enjoy his painting of Rittenhouse in Philadelphia, where he lives and works, and the colors of Girls Night Out strikes me as well. [WARNING: HUGE IMAGES]
posted by Rory Marinich at 1:13 PM PST - 9 comments



In 1978, Micheal Moorcock wrote an essay Starship Stormtroopers published in Anarchist Review which said that most popular science-fiction and fantasy is deeply Reactionary (authoritarian conservative right-wing themes), he mocked the notion of sci-fi being a "literature of ideas". But there is some "socialist" science fiction, China Miéville put together a list of Fifty Fantasy & Science Fiction Works That Socialists Should Read. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 10:44 AM PST - 133 comments


In the US, an undergraduate education used to be an option, one way to get into the middle class. Now it’s a hostage situation, required to avoid falling out of it. And if some of the hostages having trouble coming up with the ransom conclude that our current system is a completely terrible idea, then learning will come unbundled from the pursuit of a degree just as as songs came unbundled from CDs.
Napster, Udacity, and the Academy - about how online education startups are changing the notion and practice of higher education - by Clay Shirky (previously)
posted by davidjmcgee at 9:34 AM PST - 61 comments

I Was A Teenage Sexist - "Girls – the ones we think of as “cool” – don’t trust other women, women who play by gender “rules” that the rest of us cannot quite understand. The most important things those women can seemingly do are spend money on clothes and appeal to the opposite sex. Meanwhile, we ourselves don’t feel particularly female. We only feel like people. It’s a tough fall. People intuitively detect that attitude, go out of their way to remind you that you’re not fooling anybody. You are a woman, and you will only ever be a woman." [more inside]
posted by flex at 8:57 AM PST - 83 comments

Verizon is finally rolling out a comprehensive fiber infrastructure for downtown Manhattan. Not that they have much choice.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 8:38 AM PST - 26 comments


"Perhaps the most remembered and quoted (pdf) woman in Indian history is a sixteenth century poet, singer and saint called Mirabai, or Meera. Versions of her songs are sung today all over India, and she appears as a subject in films, books, dances, plays and paintings. Even Gandhi promoted her, seeing Mira as a symbol of a woman who has the right to choose her own path, forsake a life of luxury, and in nonviolent resistance find liberation (pdf)." ~ Women in World History
posted by infini at 7:04 AM PST - 5 comments

"Dead Bears" is a photographic collection by artist Michael Fortune documenting the regional Irish habit of erecting stuff animals wearing local Gaelic sporting colours as territorial markers. [more inside]
posted by distorte at 3:59 AM PST - 12 comments

November 17

"snow white and the huntsman is trash. moral garbage. a lot of fuzzy feminist thinking and pandering to creepy hollywood mores produced by metrosexual imbeciles." Michael Calleri, film reviewer for the Niagara Falls Reporter, receives an email from his publisher.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 9:37 PM PST - 144 comments

Hosted by three professors of US history (one a specialist in the 18th Century, one in the 19th, and one in the 20th), each episode of the radio show and podcast Backstory takes a subject from the news and looks at the American history behind it. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 6:43 PM PST - 34 comments

Congress Floor Charts (SLTumblr)
posted by BungaDunga at 6:39 PM PST - 18 comments

72 year-old Liu Xianping becomes an internet sensation after modeling his granddaughter's teen clothing line on her Tmall website.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 6:06 PM PST - 60 comments

Orcas chase black lab. SLYT
posted by Xurando at 5:45 PM PST - 68 comments

The same songs you've heard time and time again can be reinvigorated with a little remixing and mashing-up. Presenting the wild, wild world of Christmas mashups, starting off with a wide array of Christmas mashup music videos, such as "Rudolph (You Don't Have to Put on the Red Light)" or the rather trippy "Pump Up the Holiday". (However, there's quite a few more links inside the post.) [more inside]
posted by WCityMike at 5:39 PM PST - 9 comments



Robin Skouteris is a music and video producer, remixer and DJ based in Athens who creates mashup remixes, (like Deep and Sour and Looking for Sunshine) and a few parodies. His latest remix was released yesterday: "PopLove." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 2:18 PM PST - 6 comments

No one expected the force of the tempest that hit the New York Public Library in late 2011—not its new president, Anthony Marx, and maybe not even the literary lions up in arms over plans for an ambitious, $300 million renovation. Will the “palace of culture” on Fifth Avenue become a glorified Starbucks, as some fear? Interviewing all sides, Paul Goldberger walks the controversy back to its flash point: the nature of the library’s 21st-century mission and the values at the center of the Norman Foster–designed project. - Paul Goldberger, Firestorm on Fifth Avenue
posted by beisny at 12:57 PM PST - 23 comments

25 Corgi Cross-Breeds
posted by griphus at 12:49 PM PST - 115 comments

Let’s play Žižuku! Vaguely similar in theory to the Postmodern Text Generator, but practiced individually, rather than Markov-chain-generated text. The creator, Julian Baggini, describes Žižuku thus: "The rules are simple: pick on any widely received idea and find the most clever-sounding way to invert it, so as to create a paradox, or at least the semblance of one." [more inside]
posted by exlotuseater at 12:42 PM PST - 21 comments

"A website called 'Is Anybody Down' [front page SFW] has popped up to fill the niche that was left when the revenge porn site 'Is Anyone Up' shut down in April of this year. Like its predecessor, the site allows users to submit naked photos of other people and include links to the naked person's social networking page. But according to [First Amendment lawyer] Marc Randazza, this website's business model is slightly different from 'Is Anyone Up,' and is of questionable legality."* [more inside]
posted by ericb at 12:38 PM PST - 80 comments


Your Saturday dose of interspecies lovin: cat adopts squirrel, squirrel learns to purr (slytb). Warning: seeing this might lead to hours of watching related videos as you fall down a rabbit hole of interspecies fostering.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:49 AM PST - 19 comments


A cat and kittens playing together on live streaming cam. Very watchable kitteh tv.
posted by nickyskye at 9:59 AM PST - 95 comments

David Brin points to Asteroid belts at just the right place are friendly to life -November 6, 2012 , saying "This combination is calculated to be rare, in perhaps just 4% of solar systems. That rarity offers yet one more new, rather daunting candidate for the Fermi Paradox."
posted by hank at 8:48 AM PST - 63 comments

Looking for an hour of monkey-themed music? Maybe you want to remember Ceefax and the ZX Spectrum while enjoying an introduction to personal computing? Want something to listen to while styling your hair or trimming your facial hair? Or maybe you just want a good hour of celebrities singing, Rolling Stones covers, or John Williams tunes.

Welcome to the historic sound of the future at the Project Moonbase weekly podcast.
posted by Katemonkey at 8:43 AM PST - 1 comments




Helen Wallbank Milliken, former Michigan First Lady and strong supporter of women's rights, passed away late yesterday. Married to William Milliken, Republican governor of Michigan from 1969 to 1983, Helen Milliken was both a strong proponent of both the ERA and of abortion rights. [more inside]
posted by still_wears_a_hat at 6:31 AM PST - 18 comments

Wired tells the story of an old encoded manuscript, the effort to crack it, and the secret occult society that it revealed.
posted by Ipsifendus at 6:16 AM PST - 27 comments

A polemic against NGOs and the destruction of local innovation However, one issue that has received relatively scant attention is the way in which the notion of civil society has been reduced to being synonymous with non-governmental organisations (NGOs). This is one area that can have malign and far-reaching negative impacts, which I’d like to explore here. And here's another view, this time from India.
posted by infini at 4:08 AM PST - 22 comments

The International 2012.
posted by Sebmojo at 1:53 AM PST - 12 comments

November 16

But I couldn't do it. I spent three months and I just couldn't do it. And the reason was because I kept on meeting people who worked in the credit industry and they were really boring. I couldn't make them light up the page. And, as I said in The Psychopath Test, if you want to get away with wielding true malevolent power, be boring. Journalists hate writing about boring people, because we want to look good, you know?
A Chat With Writer Jon Ronson [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:06 PM PST - 26 comments

The first Sex Pistols show in the USA. (audio only) Atlanta, GA, January 5, 1978.
posted by BoringPostcards at 9:38 PM PST - 17 comments

An Alabama fan, an LSU fan, and one night on Bourbon Street they can't remember--and the video they can't forget. In January, an Alabama fan was videotaped placing his genitals on an LSU fan's face. The video quickly went viral on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by Four-Eyed Girl at 6:16 PM PST - 106 comments

As the least-productive Congress in a generation draws to a close, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has spoken in support of a new proposal to reform the filibuster. The proposed changes would not eliminate the filibuster, but would restore the talking filibuster, which requires that the opposition explain their objections and keep talking in order to delay a vote on the bill under consideration. [more inside]
posted by wintermind at 5:53 PM PST - 54 comments

Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman appeared in 1976... and it exists as a sort of island of experimentation, its ripples of influence not fully engaged with until several decades later... . Predictably rejected by the networks, this Norman Lear production ran in first-run syndication, five nights a week, usually after the late-night news. ... Louise Lasser (once Woody Allen’s muse) stars as a put-upon pre-feminist housewife who repeats the secular liturgy of American consumerism in an attempt to stave off a nervous breakdown.*
posted by Egg Shen at 5:46 PM PST - 61 comments

It's November, and that means Children In Need, and that means new Doctor Who. Which this year sees the return of everyone's favourite Victorian great detective Madame Vastra, her beautiful companion Jenny, and their ugly manservant Strax. And, of course, that serves as a lead in to The Snowmen.
posted by Mezentian at 5:26 PM PST - 27 comments

Taking the seen-it route: Sara Morrison talks about the rise and influence of television show recapping; recapping's advantages for writers; and the origins and evolution of Television Without Pity (<--- time suck warning: TVTropes link!) Includes lots of links and a handy chart of recappers. [more inside]
posted by flex at 4:52 PM PST - 41 comments


“Her early records are collectors’ items. Her writing and playing have become part of the pattern of jazz history. She has transcended the difficulties experienced by women in the music field and through several decades has held a position of eminence as one of jazz’s most original and creative pianists. She speaks softly: ‘Anything you are shows up in your music—jazz is whatever you are playing yourself, being yourself, letting your thoughts come through.’” Mary Lou Williams: Into The Sun, a conversational profile by fellow pianist Marian McPartland, 1964. [more inside]
posted by koeselitz at 4:18 PM PST - 6 comments


Russell Simmons presents thirteen proposed Constitutional amendments aimed at getting money out of American politics.
posted by Rykey at 3:07 PM PST - 25 comments



After a 5 year absence, construction delays, and rumors of cancellation, Formula 1 is back to a permanent home in Austin, Texas this weekend. [more inside]
posted by ninjew at 12:35 PM PST - 68 comments

Mike Sui and the new laowai: "...speak­ing Chi­nese is still just rare enough that Sui's instant fame has scratched a blis­ter of resent­ment than never real­ly heals in China's Chi­nese language-learner com­mu­ni­ty, and his suc­cess has high­light­ed how Chi­nese demands on laowai [foreign] enter­tain­ers have dras­ti­cal­ly changed in just a decade."
posted by ocherdraco at 12:27 PM PST - 14 comments


"We worked through every possible disaster situation," Reed said. "We did three actual all-day sessions of destroying everything we had built."
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:19 AM PST - 30 comments


October 2012 is the 332nd consecutive month with an above-average temperature. If you were born in or after April 1985, if you are right now 27 years old or younger, you have never lived through a month that was colder than average. State of the Climate: Global Analysis October 2012 (NOAA). While $50 billion Sandy has had the spotlight, the biggest natural disaster of 2012 (in the US) has been the Great Drought still ongoing which is expected to cut America's GDP by 0.5 to 1% for the year. The death toll from the heat waves that accompanied this year's drought will exceed that of Sandy. This Sunday and Monday, Ken Burns premiers his new documentary "The Dust Bowl", on PBS. (via)
posted by stbalbach at 10:55 AM PST - 42 comments

More than most literary phenomena, names in fiction seem very straightforward until you start to think about them. The simple question, ‘why does a name sound right?’ leads to a whole range of questions. Are there rules about how names are given to characters? Do naming practices differ in different periods? Are they specific to particular genres? Do different authors use names in entirely different ways? There are also anxieties to address: is discussion of names in fiction snagged in a feedback loop, in which we think James Bond is such a good name for a spy because that’s what we know it to be?
posted by Chrysostom at 10:21 AM PST - 118 comments

Sonny Eliot celebrated 50 years in television back in 1997. Sonny, a B52 bomber pilot who was shot down and spent months in a POW camp in Germany, returned to Detroit after the war and began accepting any position/role he could in local TV. [more inside]
posted by HuronBob at 10:04 AM PST - 16 comments

"I don't want my girls to be children who are perfect and then, when they start to feel like women, they remember how I thought of myself as ugly and so they will be ugly too. They will get older and their breasts will lose their shape and they will hate their bodies, because that's what women do. That's what mommy did." Some lovely Friday-morning encouragement for all the moms.
posted by jbickers at 8:54 AM PST - 65 comments

The Wood Database has specifications and photos of many types of wood to help guide their identification (but beware the pitfalls). The site also features articles on safety and other matters.
posted by exogenous at 7:49 AM PST - 18 comments

"I thought the matter over, and concluded I could do it. So I went down and bought a barrel of Pond's Extract and a bicycle." "Taming The Bicycle" by Mark Twain.
posted by nowhere man at 7:45 AM PST - 12 comments

"Sony has added some nifty new features. These include the ability to make copies of floppies using just the camera--very handy if you want to hand out extra disks on the spot. A new quarter-resolution (320 by 240) option also makes it faster to e-mail photographs. (The camera's full resolution is 640 by 480.) A built-in menu on the MVC-FD71's LCD screen permits you to easily take advantage of useful new options such as these."

Unsurprisingly, the camera which arguably first popularized consumer digital photography still has a following.
posted by 256 at 7:27 AM PST - 40 comments

I could imagine a younger version of myself sitting down to a Non-League game, watching ten minutes, then leaning over to my friend and whispering “Hey, you know, like, these guys suck. And your country suffers from a serious deficiency of nachos.” -- An American learns to appreciate Non-League Football Day. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 6:45 AM PST - 18 comments

Dumb Ways To Die. What it says on the tin. Courtesy of Metro Australia.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 6:00 AM PST - 71 comments

Arika Okrent (previously here on sign language interpreters and her 352-page book about 'Invented Languages') is currently kicking ass and taking etymologies at the Mental Floss site with a flurry of listicles* on the 'invention' of today's English/American language:
The solidly informational "11 Weirdly Spelled Words—And How They Got That Way"**
The entertainingly snarky "11 Creative Suffixes That Inspire New Words"
The just plain fun "From Y’all To Youse, 8 English Ways to Make “You” Plural"
plus one non-linguistic piece of pure pedantry: "11 Movie Chess Scenes Where The Board Is Set Up Wrong"*** [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:45 AM PST - 52 comments


You start out in 1954 by saying, “N-----, n-----, n-----.” By 1968 you can’t say “n-----”—that hurts you, backfires. So you say stuff like, uh, forced busing, states’ rights, and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites.… “We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, uh, and a hell of a lot more abstract than “N-----, n-----.”
The full audio of Republican operative and Karl Rove mentor Lee Atwater's infamous 1981 interview has been obtained and published by The Nation. [more inside]
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:58 AM PST - 144 comments

Cambodian Trees by Clément Briend. "La culture cambodgienne est habitée par une spiritualité qui crée une conscience du monde peuplée de génies et d’esprits. Dans le paysage d'une ville endormie, la nuit fait apparaître ces figures divines sur les arbres, permettant ainsi leur incarnation. Par ces projections nocturnes, nous pouvons alors toucher la magie qui illumine leur regard sur le monde." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 12:42 AM PST - 6 comments

As accreditation to many photographic news agencies is declined by the BCCI (Board of Cricket Control for India), The Telegraph publishes its own images of action from the India vs England first test match, while the Guardian goes retro. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 12:01 AM PST - 11 comments

November 15

Lord Of The Rings... Re-enacted by Ponies. The Bronies bring forth what may be their greatest creation.
posted by hippybear at 9:41 PM PST - 26 comments

Mihajlo Dimitrovski (The Mico / Тхе Мичо on deviantArt, Facebook, Blogspot) is an artist most famous for his fanart, and he's got some great A Song Of Ice And Fire illustrations (and others!). [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:08 PM PST - 5 comments

LCD Soundsystem + Miles Davis: "No editing or other tricks, just 2 youtube videos played at the same time." (SLYT)
posted by juliplease at 8:28 PM PST - 50 comments

Rutabaga, a webcomic about an adventuring chef.
posted by curious nu at 7:34 PM PST - 9 comments

Pete Namlook, electronic music producer and ambient pioneer, has died. [more inside]
posted by Otherwise at 7:12 PM PST - 39 comments


How to Be a Hipster In 22 steps.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 6:32 PM PST - 124 comments

Move over Barbie, Goldie Blox is coming to town. A kickstarter-funded construction toy + book series targeting at 5 to 9 year-old girls.
posted by gruchall at 6:27 PM PST - 35 comments


World Book Night in the USA, UK, Germany Readers, give away free books you love! Encourage reading! [more inside]
posted by Pocahontas at 5:43 PM PST - 6 comments

Hostess, the maker of Twinkies, Ding Dongs, and Wonder Bread has filed for bankruptcy twice in the past two years. Hostess workers (members of the Teamsters' Union) staged a walkout on Sunday after the company cut wages by 8 percent and benefits by up to 32 percent. Since the workers went on strike, Hostess has closed three of its plants. Hostess said today that if enough workers do not return to work by this evening, it will liquidate the company and lay off its 18,000 workers. It will announce its decision tomorrow.
posted by mudpuppie at 4:16 PM PST - 293 comments

"The Ideology of Hatred": An interview with Niza Yanay - "Once we understand how hatred operates as an apparatus of power relations, and particularly how the discourse of hatred is motivated and mobilised in national conflicts, serious questions about misrecognition, veiled desires and symptomatic expressions arise. These questions have, to a large extent, been left unaddressed in studies of hatred between groups in conflict." [more inside]
posted by flex at 4:08 PM PST - 13 comments



'TV historians will tell you that “Felix the Cat” was one of the first images ever broadcast on television (when RCA broadcast a Felix doll in 1928 on experimental station W2XBS) — but it wasn’t until the late ’40s that the first animated character was created expressly for TV. Crusader Rabbit appeared for the very first time on KNBH (Los Angeles) on August 1, 1950, and featured a Don Quixote-like title character aided by his friend Ragland T. “Rags” Tiger as they pursued adventures in serial (i.e. cliffhanger) installments.' On November 8th, the voice of Crusader Rabbit, Lucille Bliss, passed away at the age of 96. Ms. Bliss may be more familiar to younger fans as the voice of Smurfette, from The Smurfs, or as Ms. Bitters on Invader ZIM. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 2:47 PM PST - 18 comments

We have previously discussed private railcars on Ask Metafilter, but there is a growing hobby of people owning and running their own railcar speeders. [more inside]
posted by pjern at 1:57 PM PST - 31 comments

Shuffle Literature and the Hand of Fate: an article about aleatory literature— including mention of Marc Saporta’s Composition No. 1; B. S. Johnson’s The Unfortunates; Robert Grenier’s Sentences and Herta Müller’s Der Wächter nimmt seinen Kamm.
posted by misteraitch at 1:54 PM PST - 6 comments

... [Thomas] Ligotti's stories tend to have a profound emotional impact. His vision is exceedingly dark, and it is possible for his stories to infect the reader with a mild-to-severe case of depression. It is even possible for them to effect a change in the reader's self-perception and view of the universe. This warning is not meant to be sensationalistic, nor is it meant to turn new readers away. It is simply a statement of fact based upon the experiences of actual readers. Ligotti writes about the darkest of themes with an amazing power, and he means what he says. Often his stories seem to communicate a message below their surface, a sort of subliminal statement that should not rightly be able to traverse the barrier of verbal language. - Matt Cardin (previously) [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 1:50 PM PST - 21 comments

"The "Tugboat" 7" single, Galaxie 500's very first release, cost us $980.22 for 1,000 copies-- including shipping! (Naomi kept the receipts)-- or 98 cents each. I no longer remember what we sold them for, but obviously it was easy to turn at least a couple bucks' profit on each. Which means we earned more from every one of those 7"s we sold than from the song's recent 13,760 plays on Pandora and Spotify. Here's yet another way to look at it: Pressing 1,000 singles in 1988 gave us the earning potential of more than 13 million streams in 2012."
Making Cents: Damon Krukowski of Galaxie 500 and Damon & Naomi breaks down the meager royalties currently being paid out to bands by streaming services and explains what the music business' headlong quest for capital means for artists today. [more inside]
posted by anazgnos at 1:42 PM PST - 85 comments

The Eagles had been together for barely a week at the time, but Frey immediately recognized a great song when he heard it.
posted by timsteil at 1:18 PM PST - 70 comments

Tomoko Shintani just draws at Starbucks without any special reason.
posted by TimTypeZed at 12:16 PM PST - 39 comments

Why did Prop 37, the GMO labeling bill, fail? Ernest Miller of KCET argues that it wasn't money, but message. [more inside]
posted by Scientist at 10:25 AM PST - 154 comments


Give to the Max Day is an attempt to boost local online philanthropy by aggregating all Minnesota nonprofits (and public schools) into a search engine and encouraging contributions on a single day.
posted by antonymous at 10:15 AM PST - 11 comments

"Emma Stone was my dream best friend for a number of weeks. We'd see movies together. Get drinks and gossip. I remember one dream where we just texted. She resurfaced as my best friend last fall after I saw The Help. An actual friend of mine once told me a story about meeting Andrew Garfield's best friend, which meant Andrew Garfield and I were dream best friends for the following few nights. Again, there was texting." The Awl asks people: What Was Your Weirdest Celebrity Sex Dream?
posted by The Whelk at 9:57 AM PST - 113 comments


Jingle cats SCREEN TEST - Crawling in my SKin. Ayuh, seems like Christmas comes earlier every year. [more inside]
posted by Greg Nog at 9:44 AM PST - 16 comments

Medieval Writing is your one-stop shop for all things medieval paleography. [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 9:25 AM PST - 9 comments

Ingress: What is The Niantic Project? The trail starts here
posted by GuyZero at 9:25 AM PST - 27 comments

Chip Rogers is the Republican Majority Leader of the Georgia State Senate, and Treasurer of ALEC (previously 1 2). On October 11th he hosted a four-hour briefing for his fellow senators, regarding Obama's mind-control techniques which are forcing the US into a United Nations-led Communist dictatorship in which suburbanites are forcibly relocated to cities. The theory is based on Agenda 21, the non-binding 1992 UN treaty on sustainable development. Rogers narrowly failed to pass a resolution against Agenda 21, but other states have done so, and Alabama has even forbidden its implementation in law.
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 8:54 AM PST - 132 comments


Tragedies and disasters of the Crowsnest Pass (part 1, part 2).
posted by Chrysostom at 8:09 AM PST - 11 comments

I have always been fascinated by the way music can completely change the way you watch film - and how you feel as you watch the images. Adam Curtis [more inside]
posted by Grangousier at 7:55 AM PST - 25 comments


A woman wanting a mans-style hair-cut was denied one by a Toronto barber because his religion forbids him from touching a woman he is not related to. The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario is expected to hear the issue if mediation fails, as a competing rights issue where there is a conflict between two individuals exercising their rights. The OBA (warning, cheesy music autoplay) defends some Barbershops as a men's-only space tradition dating back to Ancient Greece, while others point to womens-only spaces like spas that are allowed to continue to operate while discriminating against men.
posted by saucysault at 6:53 AM PST - 239 comments

WTFlevel.com: Real-time updates on twitter swearing.
posted by ennui.bz at 6:35 AM PST - 14 comments

90 years of (British) radio in 90 seconds. That is all.
posted by Paul Slade at 3:30 AM PST - 19 comments


November 14

It took 15 years, but, as the Guardian reports, the feud between writers Salman Rushdie and John le Carre is at an end.
posted by subdee at 8:41 PM PST - 37 comments

Game of Thrones Food Trucks. (SLYT)
posted by curious nu at 7:31 PM PST - 31 comments

RIP to internet and body-mod legend Stalking Cat Known as "the cat guy" on many parts of the internet, Dennis had spent money to shape himself in the form of his totemic animal, which he described as "a stalking cat". He held the world record for "most permanent transformations to look like an animal" by a single person No note or reason has been shared by the family.
posted by boo_radley at 6:57 PM PST - 66 comments

A year after the game Glitch 'unlaunched' to retool, Glitch is closing. Glitchens everywhere mourn their fabulous homes. Glitch had a quirky style and offered a large number of possible crafts to their players, but unfortunately the game did not attract a big enough audience to remain viable. previously previously
posted by winna at 6:22 PM PST - 187 comments

Radio Colifata is a beloved weekly Buenos Aires radio show run by psychiatric patients that breaks down boundaries between the "interned" and the "externed." During his Argentina tour, radio supporter Manu Chao invited a few Colifatos to join him. LT22 Radio La Colifata is 94 minute a documentary (in Spanish) shot over ten years that celebrates the station and the tour.
posted by madamjujujive at 5:58 PM PST - 7 comments

The Freedom From Religion Foundation (previously, previously) has announced that it is suing the IRS over it's apparent unwillingness to enforce the rules against religious electioneering, banned by the The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
posted by sarastro at 5:29 PM PST - 88 comments

Auctioneers as hypnotists? (Hurry up, you could lose the bid...)
posted by Dr. Fetish at 4:11 PM PST - 10 comments


How Polling Firm PPP Won The Election With Its Hilarious And Infuriating Questions: "Public Policy Polling, the firm that correctly predicted all 50 states in the presidential election, is known for asking some weird, quirky and, sometimes, controversial questions in its polls... Here are some of the firm's best questions of the election cycle." [more inside]
posted by flex at 3:28 PM PST - 37 comments

In 2006, aspiring inventor Marc Griffin appeared on the show American Inventor with a table game he had invented called Bulletball. Convinced he had created the next Olympic sport, he had spent 26 years of his life on the idea. He'd quit his job, sold all his possessions including his wife's wedding ring, and was sleeping in his car. The judges hated the idea – and his gut-wrenching experience on the show went viral. [more inside]
posted by dontjumplarry at 2:22 PM PST - 59 comments

In 2003, only two colleges charged more than $40,000 a year for tuition, fees, room, and board. Six years later more than two hundred colleges charged that amount. What happened between 2003 and 2009 was the start of the recession. By driving down endowments and giving tax-starved states a reason to cut back their support for higher education, the recession put new pressure on colleges and universities to raise their price. When our current period of slow economic growth will end is anybody’s guess, but even when it does end, colleges and universities will certainly not be rolling back their prices. These days, it is not just the economic climate in which our colleges and universities find themselves that determines what they charge and how they operate; it is their increasing corporatization. If corporatization meant only that colleges and universities were finding ways to be less wasteful, it would be a welcome turn of events. But an altogether different process is going on
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:28 PM PST - 69 comments


The White House's petitions website has garnered over 100,000 signatures to "Peacefully grant the State of Texas to withdraw from the United States of America and create its own NEW government." Many signatures are from people not living in Texas. [more inside]
posted by sutt at 1:13 PM PST - 279 comments

What happened next is that Pratchett collapsed. “I had to kneel on the back seat of the taxi and give him CPR,” Rob says. “It was fingers down throat stuff. He nearly died.” -- Extracts from an interview by Laurie Penny of Terry Pratchett reveal he nearly died and is planning to leave the Discworld in the hands of his daughter, Rhianna Pratchett. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:56 PM PST - 84 comments


Robert Atwan, editor of the Best American Essays series, chooses the top ten essays since 1950 for PW's Tipsheet. All but three of the top essays are available to read online and linked in the article. (via)
posted by gladly at 12:36 PM PST - 7 comments

COLBERT: I suppose fear is like a drug. A little bit isn’t that bad, but you can get addicted to the consumption and distribution of it. What’s evil is the purposeful distribution of fear. As Paul said when he was faced with the gom jabbar, “Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little death that brings total obliteration.”
PLAYBOY: Did you just make a Dune reference?
COLBERT: I did! [laughs] If you’re injecting fear into other people, then you’re trying to kill their minds. You’re trying to get them to stop thinking.
A thoughtful interview with Stephen Colbert in Playboy (NSFW ads)(Non-Playboy copy.)
posted by rewil at 12:21 PM PST - 46 comments

100,000 Stars [SLInteractive3DVisualization] (Seems to run best on Chrome or Safari and a decent graphics card)
posted by gwint at 11:31 AM PST - 18 comments

The History of Film in one convenient, zoomable graphic. 2000 "important" American, British, and a few other European films, grouped by genre and year. [more inside]
posted by Currer Belfry at 10:29 AM PST - 33 comments

Royce White is a professional American basketball player who suffers from general anxiety disorder. Though he was considered one of the best talents in last year's NBA draft, he was not selected until the 16th pick, due to concerns over his mental health and his avowed reluctance to fly. Although the NBA season is only a couple of weeks old, White and his team, the Houston Rockets, are already having difficulty determining how to manage his health while meeting the professional demands of the NBA. LINKS: Documentary highlighting White's anxiety // Highlights of White while at Iowa State // White's Twitter account (where he is currently tweeting about his situation)
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 10:02 AM PST - 46 comments

What was Of Grammatology about? When Madeleine, the heroine of Jeffrey Eugenides's campus novel The Marriage Plot, asks a young theory-head this question, she is immediately set straight: 'If it was "about" anything, then it was about the need to stop thinking of books as being about things.' That's not so far off. In all three books, Derrida's argument was that Western thought from Plato to Rousseau to Lévi-Strauss had been hopelessly entangled in the illusion that language might provide us with access to a reality beyond language, beyond metaphor: an unmediated experience of truth and being which he called 'presence'.
Not in the Mood by Adam Shatz is an essay in The London Review of Books about a new biography of the French philosopher Jacques Derrida. The review does a good job of explaining Derrida's theories in simple language and putting it in the context of his life, from his childhood as French Jew in Vichy-controlled Algeria to his later years as a globetrotting academic star. For a complimentary perspective on Derrida, you can do worse than starting with these thoughts on his relevance for historians and progressives.
posted by Kattullus at 9:57 AM PST - 36 comments

We’ve caught some of the smartest and most commited public men and women with their pants at their ankles. Time and again, we’ve had our fun. We’ve roundly mocked them for the very weaknesses that are so utterly our own. Reporters who have at points in their lives fucked themselves silly in hotel rooms across this great land of ours while pursuing the infidelities of more public men with righteous glee — these are not men and women who are much inclined to any real moment of self reflection, but then who among us really is? This kind of hypocrisy requires a complicit silence and a ritual wiping of the memory before every byline. [more inside]
posted by Hypnotic Chick at 9:35 AM PST - 72 comments


The Law & Order Database is complete. Which characters had the highest success rate?
posted by Egg Shen at 8:46 AM PST - 26 comments

Meet Michael the retired bank robber, Franklin the repo man, Trevor the psychopath and welcome to back Los Santos. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by griphus at 8:42 AM PST - 43 comments

This woman had a haunted toaster. (Originally aired on the Today Show in 1984.)
posted by usonian at 8:11 AM PST - 48 comments

"Then one of the nurses calls me and says, “The doctor would like to know why you’re rolling around on a table full of semen.” And I say, “TELL HIM THAT’S NOT HOW I NORMALLY SPEND MY SATURDAYS.”
Author Pamela "Pamie" Ribon: "How I Might Have Just Become the Newest Urban Legend" [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:03 AM PST - 63 comments

While slit-scan photography is most well known for the "stargate" sequence in 2001: A Space Odyssey, advances in technology now allow it to be applied to moving objects in 3D. (via)
posted by The Whelk at 6:55 AM PST - 35 comments

Obama won Ohio by two points, and Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown won by five, but Democrats emerged with just four of Ohio’s 16 House seats. In Wisconsin, Obama prevailed by seven points, and Democratic Senate candidate Tammy Baldwin by five, but their party finished with just three of the state’s eight House seats. In Virginia, Obama and Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Tim Kaine were clear victors, but Democrats won just three of the commonwealth’s 11 House seats. In Florida, Obama eked out a victory and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson won by 13 points, but Democrats will hold only 10 of the Sunshine State’s 27 House seats. The Revenge of 2010: How gerrymandering saved the congressional Republican majority, undermined Obama's mandate, set the terms of the sequestration fight, and locked Democrats out of the House for the next decade. It's not a new problem. But if the Supreme Court guts the Voting Rights Act, it could get a whole lot worse. And the electoral college may be next. (What's gerrymandering, you ask? Let the animals explain. Meet the Gerry-mander. Peruse the abused. Catch the movie. Or just play the game. Previously.)
posted by Rhaomi at 6:35 AM PST - 137 comments

The bicycle racing photographs of Timm Kolln. Tour de France 2009. The Peloton (previously). Racing polaroids. Roubaix. Jens Voight. Luis Ocana. Juan Antonio Flecha on a Winter Ride. Stage 9 2010. At the races. Bicicletas Zeus. Lo Stelvio. Federico Bahamontes. [Side scrolling photography site, your forbearance is appreciated.]
posted by OmieWise at 6:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Europe is on general strike against austerity today.
posted by eviemath at 5:48 AM PST - 126 comments

Book Shopping with the Best-Read Man in America. An afternoon in a used bookstore with Michael Dirda, Pulitzer Prize winning book critic and author.
posted by aldurtregi at 5:19 AM PST - 38 comments


Armstrong Baillie is unemployed and lives in Dundee. Twice a week, funded by his busking, he dresses up as a giraffe and performs good deeds.
posted by liquidindian at 3:31 AM PST - 21 comments

"Farmer's Dilemma" is a short, sad and beautiful comic about family and acceptance. From Sam Alden's art blog, GINGERLAND.
posted by teraflop at 12:33 AM PST - 13 comments


November 13

"Decades ago, the Mbuti typically sold about half the meat they captured; now they sell nearly every carcass, saving only the prized entrails and heads for themselves. The hunt, in essence, has devolved into an all-out commercial endeavor, staged not for subsistence, but to feed growing regional markets. And the impact is clear."
posted by Scientist at 11:37 PM PST - 20 comments


For those tired of watered-down, light-beer theology...Check out the Homebrewed Christianity Podcast, started by process-theologians Trip Fuller and Chad Crawford. Today's podcast interviews Old-Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann. The highlight is the lightning round finale (starts at ~61 min) where Walter gives rapid thoughts on such topics such as religious pluralism, ecological crises, immigration, homosexuality, economics, empire, and his favorite Bible story for his grandchildren. Also this week, a conversation with Barry Taylor (ACDC Sound Engineer, Episcopal Priest, and philosopher).
posted by womprat78 at 6:40 PM PST - 12 comments

The complete soundtrack to the upcoming movie, The Hobbit, is available here. "The score is composed by Howard Shore who also wrote all three films in The Lord of The Rings trilogy for director Peter Jackson. “I have looked forward to returning to the imaginative world of Middle-earth for quite a while,” says Shore of the score. “I read all of the books by Tolkien, including The Hobbit, when I was in my twenties, and his deep love of nature and all things green resonates deeply with me.”"
posted by h00py at 4:23 PM PST - 46 comments

Jay Raymond collects irons. Until 2007 he collected only streamlined irons: In the U.S. this meant irons made between 1932 and 1952. In 2007 he sold that collection of about 180 irons, and he now collects electric irons made between 1890-1925.
Alan Davies collects old bricks.
Rev Doug Dawson owns about 900 harmonicas.
Shaun Kotlarsky collects electrical and telegraph insulators. He has about 2,000 of them.
Bob Manning collects Mickey Mouse ties. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 4:05 PM PST - 29 comments

Authentic Wm. Gibson promises “synopses for William Gibson novels that are definitely 100% real, but only in a timeline with greater authenticity than this one.”, and delivers exactly that.
posted by acb at 3:43 PM PST - 26 comments

The campaign website for Bob Dole's 1996 presidential run is still (mostly) operational. Read about the issues in tiny, centered text. See animated flag gifs. Download a 128x128 "wallpaper" bitmap. Vote Dole-Kemp.
posted by 0xFCAF at 3:21 PM PST - 93 comments

Erin Gloria Ryan asks: Is America ready for a white, male Secretary of State? She's not the only one satirically contemplating this question - John Norris over at Foreign Policy magazine has also wondered: Is America ready for a male Secretary of State? [more inside]
posted by flex at 3:16 PM PST - 46 comments


I was of course already familiar with the general characteristics of Friedman’s writing—hubris, clichéd jingoism, Orientalism, favoritism of Israel, self-contradiction, a severe handicap in the realm of metaphor construction, reduction of complex phenomena to simplistic and baseless theories. However, reviewing three decades of his work made it clear just how frightening, as opposed to simply laughable, it was that such a character had accrued three Pulitzer Prizes and risen to the position of journalistic icon at the US newspaper of record.

- Interview in Jadaliyya with Belen Fernandez on her (new to me) book critiquing NYT columnist Thomas Friedman, The Imperial Messenger: Thomas Friedman at Work. [more inside]
posted by Panjandrum at 2:04 PM PST - 36 comments

"The word reclaim came up more than once to describe the rising tide. It is a revealing word, more narrative than simply descriptive: it hints at some larger backstory, some plot twist in a longer saga about our claims and the water’s counterclaims to the earth.… This story was already ancient when it was adapted for the biblical text—which is to say, it records a very old fear. Like all old fears, it has the uncanny feel of a vivid memory. It may be a memory of an actual flood in an actual Sumerian city, Shurrupal, ca 2800 B.C.E. In fact, it may be even older than that."
posted by the mad poster! at 1:40 PM PST - 21 comments


Teddy Bear(trailer) is a movie about a Danish bodybuilder in search of love. Kim Kold, actual bodybuilder, stars. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:57 PM PST - 7 comments


"You know it’s that time of the year again in Holland, when you are greeted by some Dutch person on the street, whose face is painted completely black and is sporting an afro wig, bright red lips and a ridiculous clown-like costume. What is possibly more strange than this very sight, is the fact that many Dutch person finds it a completely normal and acceptable occurrence. Yes, Dutch people love their Zwarte Pieten." (previously, previously) Now combine them with Gangnam parodies and you have the latest Sinterklaas trend.
posted by MartinWisse at 12:35 PM PST - 162 comments

Ever wished your favorite song could be extended infinitely? Well, today's your day. Behold: The Infinite Jukebox. [more inside]
posted by SomaSoda at 12:11 PM PST - 137 comments

Surviving the World is a photocomic education by Dante Shepherd (and his team of experts) which provides brief useful observations about life and its lessons. [more inside]
posted by quin at 11:23 AM PST - 9 comments

In last night's episode of Independent Lens on PBS, filmmaker Alex Gibney presented the case that America's richest citizens have "rigged the game in their favor," and created unprecedented inequality in the United States. "Park Avenue: Money, Power and the American Dream" [video, website]
posted by nowhere man at 10:23 AM PST - 51 comments



"Murdering the Impossible" - a 2006 National Geographic profile of Reinhold Messner, "the greatest climber in history". [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 7:07 AM PST - 22 comments

Hamish Steele! Be moved by his brief-yet-poignant award-winning animated film The Right Time. Be charmed by his commissioned portraits of couples and their pets. Be inspired by his loose and fresh superheroes (Batman, Phoenix, Hawkeye)! And it wouldn't be Tumblr without an appearance by Sherlock Holmes (not that one).
posted by overeducated_alligator at 7:03 AM PST - 4 comments

Directions to Last Visitor is an online installation by Charles Broskoski. (via)
posted by shakespeherian at 6:54 AM PST - 20 comments


Real Oviedo, the Spanish football club that recently brought to you the talents of Juan Mata, Cazorla, Adrián or Michu, is facing bankrupcy. The 86-year-old club had to raise near 2 million euros by november 17th, an impossible challenge for a third division team in Spain. But surprisingly, in under just two weeks old and new fans from more than 60 countries have raised more than a million euros. Instrumental in this unexpected worldwide attention has been Sid Lowe. The Guardian's reporter for all things Spanish Football is an ardent supporter of Real Oviedo, ever since his Erasmus stay in the city, and has been spreading the good word from his twitter account. Last Sunday, the team defeated Real Madrid's C team with an attendance of more than 20 thousand. The same weekend, there were significantly less people seeing Barcelona play in Mallorca. last two links in Spanish
posted by valdesm at 6:03 AM PST - 15 comments

Anthony Bourdain is "fighting mad" at the Travel Channel for editing him into a commercial without his permission. He expressed his rage on twitter first, and then in a long post on his tumblr blog: "All of us on the show would have preferred to go out on a high note—and we tried to do that as best we could, turning in a strong, final season that we are very proud of. We wanted to go leaving a lot of great shows—and nothing but good memories and good will behind...But things just didn’t turn out that way." [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 5:13 AM PST - 94 comments

Don't like gay marriage? Fine. Gay Men Will Marry Your Girlfriends. [SLCollegeHumorP]
posted by Leucistic Cuttlefish at 2:23 AM PST - 182 comments


‘On May 24th, 2012, I set out on a musical and physical challenge. My aim was to find inspiration for the recordings on this album. I cycled to the four furthest points of mainland Britain, a journey of more than 2000 miles.On my bike I carried a mobile recording rig and, as I discovered locations along the way that provided inspiration for my songs, I was able to record (free-tracking) performances you can hear on these tracks.’
posted by RegMcF at 12:36 AM PST - 4 comments

November 12

Venice resident, Erla Zwingle documents the city's recent (near record breaking) "Acqua Alta". The high tide left about 2/3 of the city under water. Venice's new flood protection system is due to come online in 2014.
posted by rongorongo at 11:52 PM PST - 14 comments

I promise there is nothing gaping here: goatse.cx is now accepting pre-registration signups for a webmail service. Who wants an address at one of the web's most prestigious and notable domain names?
posted by thewalrus at 11:08 PM PST - 68 comments

The kickstarter satellites. Sandy Antunes, the author of the blog post has built his own picosatellite Project Calliope. A project he also chronicled in his blog Satelite Diaries. NPR story. [more inside]
posted by shothotbot at 9:01 PM PST - 7 comments

More Than Human: Tim Flach's intimate photographs of animal gestures and expressions seem more than a little familiar. [more inside]
posted by changeling at 6:13 PM PST - 45 comments

Hey, water moccasins! [SLYT]
posted by casarkos at 5:12 PM PST - 78 comments

Oxford Dictionaries' 2012 words of the year have been chosen: for the US, it's "gif" (as a verb); for the UK, "omnishambles." It contended for this crown with the likes of "YOLO," "superstorm," and "nomophobia." Previous Oxford words of the year can be found here (other notable year-end word lists such as those from Merriam-Webster, the American Dialect Society, and the Global Language Monitor, have yet to appear).
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 4:47 PM PST - 92 comments

Does Facebook Hate All Women—or just Feminists? An article looking at how Facebook's content standards appear to be unevenly applied in a way that ends up suppressing Feminist content.
posted by Deathalicious at 3:25 PM PST - 98 comments

Following recent revelations about apparently systematic cover-ups and a deep failure to cooperate with police by the Roman Catholic Church, the Australian Prime Minister last night announced the establishment of a Royal Commission into institutional responses to child abuse to investigate the matter.
posted by wilful at 2:56 PM PST - 64 comments

In Sentencing Criminals, Is Norway Too Soft? Or Are We Too Harsh?
It’s not very often the concept of restorative justice gets much play outside scholarly publications or reformist criminal justice circles, so first, some credit for Max Fisher at The Atlantic for giving it an earnest look last week. In seeking to explain Norway’s seemingly measly twenty-one-year sentence for remorseless, mass-murdering white supremacist Anders Breivik—a sentence that is certain to be extended to last the rest of his life—Fisher casts a critical eye on the underlying philosophy that animates that country’s sentencing practices, finding it to be “radically different” from what we’re used to in the United States.
The Effectiveness of Restorative Justice Practices: A Meta-Analysis [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:54 PM PST - 87 comments

Video (1m4s): Cuttlefish Attacks Octopus [more inside]
posted by Scientist at 12:51 PM PST - 67 comments

Portraits of Soldiers Before, During, and After War "Photographer Lalage Snow, who is currently based in Kabul, Afghanistan, embarked on an 8-month-long project titled We Are The Not Dead featuring portraits of British soldiers before, during, and after their deployment in Afghanistan."
posted by sweetkid at 12:35 PM PST - 25 comments

Are you enthusiastic ("pertaining to possession by a deity," from Gk. enthousiastikos "inspired," from enthousiazein ) about Etymology? ( ethimolegia "facts of the origin and development of a word," from O.Fr. et(h)imologie (14c., Mod.Fr. étymologie), from L. etymologia, from Gk. etymologia, properly "study of the true sense (of a word)," Then why not explore ( 1580s, "to investigate, examine," a back formation from exploration, or else from M.Fr. explorer (16c.), from L. explorare ) the vast resources (1610s, "means of supplying a want or deficiency," from Fr. resourse) of the ONLINE ETYMOLOGY DICTIONARY [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 12:11 PM PST - 30 comments

Paparazzi by Lady Gaga. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte at 11:41 AM PST - 20 comments

The permanent collection of the (US) National Veterans Art Museum in Chicago contains more than 2,500 pieces of art by 250 artists, all of which can be seen at NVAM Collection Online. The site includes biographical material on the artists who created the work. Featured Artwork. A small selection. (Via. Images at links in this post may be nsfw, and/or disturbing to some viewers.)
posted by zarq at 11:22 AM PST - 1 comments

Alien: Engineers - the original script for Prometheus.
posted by Artw at 10:46 AM PST - 162 comments

It was simplifying. Forget your civilian reflexes. The task does not require a purpose. Do not ask questions, do not make suggestions, do not even think of that. The Legion is our fatherland. We will accept you. We will shelter you.
posted by The corpse in the library at 10:29 AM PST - 32 comments

Dear Mr. President: “You're the President of the United States: a country with 5000 nuclear weapons, birthplace of the world's computing and telecommunications industry, home of the first atomic clock and creator of the global positioning system. But chances are, if you just took regular American high school physics, you don't know one iota about the science behind these things (no offense). That's because high school physics students across most of America are not required to learn about pretty much any physical phenomena discovered or explained more recently than 1865.” From Henry Reich of Minute Physics. (Can't watch video? Click the "interactive transcript" button under the video to read it instead.) Minute Physics previously, previouslier. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 10:29 AM PST - 69 comments


Readers of literature from "small" languages treasure their translators, who are rarely recognized and poorly compensated for their months and sometimes years of lonely labor.

Two of the best translators from Czech died in the last month or so. Michael Heim translated not only from Czech but also Russian, Croatian, Serbian, German, French and Dutch. Less well-known and less polyglotish, Peter Kussi translated Milan Kundera as well as Jiri Grusa, Karel Capek, Josef Skvorecky, Bohumil Hrabal and others whose works might otherwise be lost to English readers. [more inside]
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 8:50 AM PST - 21 comments

Tainted: Why Gay Men Still Can't Donate Blood - "Since 1983, Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines have disqualified men who have ever had sex with men (MSM) from donating blood... Uneven application of exclusion to at-risk individuals suggests that risk aversion disproportionately impacts MSMs. For example, a non-MSM individual who has had sexual contact with a commercial sex worker or HIV-positive partner is deferred for only twelve months... The fact that the U.S. upholds a lifetime ban on MSM donation while Australian policy allows MSM individuals to donate a year or less after contact reveals a glaring discrepancy. Both ethics and science point to a flaw in FDA policy. That I could have had sex with 365 partners this year and be a perfectly fine candidate for donating blood, while the MSM next to me wouldn't qualify, betrays a faulty line of logic." [more inside]
posted by flex at 7:10 AM PST - 104 comments

Want preservative-free sriracha but don't have time to make your own? Jolene Collins makes (and sells) her own high-end artisanal sriracha. Would you like to watch?
posted by Egg Shen at 7:04 AM PST - 95 comments

"Everyone, since the dawn of time, has eaten or they've perished," Sam says. "But that man is the best eater who has ever lived, in the history of the world."
posted by Chrysostom at 6:20 AM PST - 42 comments

Of all the countries in the world, the British have managed to invade or attack all but 22 (Torygraph), making the US look like absolute pikers. Somewhat inflated by the fact that the authors of the study counted everywhere British forces attacking, including pirate attacks on silver ships in the Spanish Main, not just those places where the UK planted a flag.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:57 AM PST - 87 comments

The Useless Web serves a collection of some of the most frivolous, insignificant and worthless websites (many of which were previously seen here).
Obvious Warning: May contain sound, flashing images, old memes or peanuts. Well, probably not peanuts.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:10 AM PST - 48 comments

November 11

Secret Weapons. "David Cronenberg's seldom seen 1972 made-for-TV movie, 'Secret Weapons'. It is six years into a future American civil war. A man has created a drug that enhances fighting skills. But will he give it to the theocratic government, or the rebels?" [Via]
posted by homunculus at 11:40 PM PST - 4 comments

Mubei, or Tombstone, by Yang Jisheng, was published in 2008 and is considered to be the definitive account of the Chinese Great Famine. The book is banned in China, but has been available in Hong Kong. Counterfeit and electronic copies have allowed many Chinese to access the book. Before this November, Tombstone was available only in Chinese; however, the English translation has now been released. [more inside]
posted by Bokmakierie at 10:47 PM PST - 27 comments

"On hot days or as a special treat her endangered grey-headed flying foxes are treated to a special mix of blended fruit juices. Camilla the 12-week-old bat especially enjoys hanging around and partaking of a cold 'frothy'."
posted by griphus at 7:23 PM PST - 42 comments

The new James Bond movie, Skyfall, has largely been well received by critics some of who have suggested that the film is less sexist than its predecessors. Others have disagreed and stated that the new film has is quite problematic and may be "abandoning the moral intelligence of the times". Giles Coren, writer for The Times, put forth a piece that calls Skyfall "a sick, reactionary, depressing film". The Times refused to run the piece saying that "it was about James Bond and there's been too much Bond". So Coren's wife and fellow journalist, Esther Walker, agreed to run the piece in her blog.
posted by sendai sleep master at 6:07 PM PST - 278 comments

"One tragic event and two acts of generosity brought the [Board Game Geek] community together: the result was the Jack Vasel Memorial Fund." [more inside]
posted by Midnight Rambler at 6:00 PM PST - 17 comments

Snoring Hummingbird (SLYT) Watch closely for sticky-outy tongue!
posted by Mizu at 5:33 PM PST - 16 comments

Are spanking fetishes now mainstream sexual behavior or are they an untreated response to childhood trauma? "I think that avoiding raising one's children to be spanking fetishists is a good reason not to spank children. It is not that I view some particular set of sexual semiotics as intrinsically inferior to any other. It is because I believe that at least some forms of spanking fetishism are the direct result of traumatic repression caused by childhood spankings. Hence, to say "don't spank your kids because you might turn them into fetishists" is really just an abbreviated way of saying "don't spank your kids because this can evoke unintegratable emotions of hatred which your child will be forced to repress and which they may then cope with by eroticizing your spankings and spending the rest of their lives feeling frustrated because their pool of available sexual partners is so small, and feeling guilty and ashamed because of how your maltreatment of them made them hate you back when they were helpless and dependent upon you." NSFW previously
posted by Xurando at 4:53 PM PST - 62 comments

Suburban Kids With Biblical Names write music with a warmth and simplicity that really hits the spot on chilly autumn days. My favorite songs of theirs are Noodles and Trees and Squirrels; their better-known songs include Funeral Face, Rent a Wreck, and Loop Duplicate My Heart.
posted by Rory Marinich at 4:20 PM PST - 7 comments

José "Pepe" Mujica had been the President of Uruguay since 2010 and is considered to be the 'World’s poorest president'. "His humble lifestyle is reflected by his choice of an aging Volkswagen Beetle as transport, his only asset. The Economist describes him as "a roly-poly former guerrilla who grows flowers on a small farm and swears by vegetarianism". He also donates 87% of his state salary to charitable causes. He does not believe in God." [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 2:56 PM PST - 38 comments





Dancing Stingrays (SLWimp) (wait for it to hit you...)
posted by pjern at 11:53 AM PST - 13 comments


is it t  /  is it true  /  is it too late to register to vote  /  is it time to break up  /  is it tuesday  Enjoy the algorithmically-generated autocompleted poignance of Google Poetics, or submit your own. [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 11:31 AM PST - 24 comments


In France, a Mission to Return the Military's Carrier Pigeons to Active Duty — Grounded After Modern Communication Devices Soared, Birds May Offer Low-Tech Solutions; No Round Trips [WSJ]. Let us not forget Le Vaillant, Cher Ami, and the other birds that save lives.
posted by cenoxo at 7:17 AM PST - 13 comments

Balloon Bag End. Guy creates Hobbit hole with air and rubber.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:31 AM PST - 53 comments

In the long history of love songs the attention of a beautiful woman has been compared to many things – but perhaps only in Pakistan's tribal belt would it be likened to the deadly missile strike of a remotely controlled US drone.
posted by infini at 3:56 AM PST - 28 comments

Bill Roundy is a cartoonist living in Brooklyn, who has a strip in the Brooklyn Paper in which he draws and reviews local bars. 'Nuff said.
posted by MartinWisse at 2:26 AM PST - 56 comments

They shall not grow old.
posted by dazed_one at 12:52 AM PST - 76 comments

November 10

William Manchester was an American author who wrote the celebrated Winston Churchill biographies: The Last Lion: Visions of Glory 1874–1932 and The Last Lion: Alone 1932–1940. After having a stroke in 1998 and suffering from writer’s block, on Oct. 9, 2003, Manchester asked Palm Beach Post writer, Paul Reid, to complete the third volume of Churchill’s biography. In October 2012, after nine years of writing, and 24 years after Alone, Paul Reid completed the third volume and The Last Lion: Defender of the Realm 1940-1965 was published. [more inside]
posted by Bokmakierie at 10:10 PM PST - 14 comments

Posters of famous movie cars (and trucks; and planes; ... a few space ships; .... the odd train.) done in the style of vintage race advertising posters.
posted by Mitheral at 9:34 PM PST - 35 comments

The Magic School Bus: The Movie [SLYT]
posted by schmod at 2:58 PM PST - 51 comments

Ronda Rousey - the first American woman to medal in judo at the Summer Olympics - is widely regarded as the best pound-for-pound female MMA fighter in the world. She has won all six of her professional fights - all but one of them in less than a minute - using a trademark armbar that is usually described as "devastating". [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 12:05 PM PST - 110 comments


Remember that big Red/Blue map that you kept looking at on election night? That graphic was really pretty deceptive, and maps were mentioned 117 times in our huge election thread, often because they didn't make sense or were confusing. Mark Newman, Department of Physics and Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan, has created a neat page that represents the data from last Tuesday in a more visually accurate manner. [more inside]
posted by HuronBob at 11:07 AM PST - 96 comments

A treasure trove of Brazil from the conflict between Natives and farmers to Music inspired by the bandit Lampião.
Discover writers (with a metafilter hat tip); Scary Lullabies e muito mais.
posted by adamvasco at 10:37 AM PST - 5 comments

Anyone familiar with the contemporary Russian humorous folklore (jokelore, or in Russian anekdoty) knows that one of the most popular series of such jokes revolves around the Chukchis, the native people of Chukotka, the most remote northeast corner of Russia. These jokes, especially popular in 1990s and 2000s, fit the international genre of ethnic stupidity jokes . . .
posted by jason's_planet at 9:55 AM PST - 17 comments

"At the end of his life, the boxer Joe Louis said, ‘I did the best I could with what I had.’ It’s exactly what I would say of my work: I did the best I could with what I had.” [The New Yorker] "The writer Philip Roth announced his retirement in a little-noticed interview with a French magazine [Les Inrocks] and said that Nemesis, which was published in 2010, would be his last book."
posted by Fizz at 9:28 AM PST - 29 comments


Come Feel Me Tremble is a is a movie about Paul Westerberg. It's a little weird.
posted by timsteil at 8:02 AM PST - 19 comments

BRAVEST WARRIORS!!! From Pendleton 'Adventure Time' Ward, it's a new, somewhat more adult (mild profanity & alien relationships) sci-fi cartoon about Second Generation Heroes who are kind-of-dorks. Here's an earlier version he did for Nickelodeon's Random Cartoons, but the new series is made for Fred 'Frederator' Seibert's Cartoon Hangover YouTube Channel. If that wasn't edgy or NSFW enough for you, check out "Peepshow Therapy with Carmen Geddit" or just wait for the debut of James 'American Elf' Kochalka's "Super F***ers"
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:55 AM PST - 11 comments

The Mark Kermode and Simon Mayo's Film Review YouTube channel has a lot of videos of film reviews from the livestream of their BBC radio show and podcast, going back about five years. They are sorted by genre, film rating, geographic origin and one special category, Classic Kermodean Rants, which includes his reviews of Transformers: Dark of the Moon, Sex and the City 2, in which he ends up sing-shouting The Internationale, and Angels and Demons, which woke a man from a coma (mp3, story starts at 5:10, and it is followed up here, beginning at 5:30).
posted by Kattullus at 7:46 AM PST - 32 comments

Tony Stark style daredevils "flying" over, under and through the water (SLYT) This video (warning: annoying music) gets off to a slow start, but then the air ballet begins and the people turn into cormorants and dolphins. Enjoy!
posted by carmicha at 7:11 AM PST - 26 comments

It's Saturday; why not think about the pigeonhole principle? Here are problems and more problems and what you might call a problem with the principle itself as it is often stated.
posted by Wolfdog at 7:04 AM PST - 41 comments

Burger Of The Future by Dave Arnold, Director of Technology at the French Culinary Institute in 22 steps & Voilà
posted by growabrain at 6:03 AM PST - 83 comments

Every month, Ian Anderson, editor of the UK music magazine fRoots, puts together a free 80-minute podcast of the past few weeks' best world music and folk music tracks. He has excellent taste - by which I mean it coincides largely with my own - and provides by far the best substitute I've yet found for Andy Kershaw's much-missed Radio 3 show. The same link has an archive offering the past four years' worth of fRoots shows for you to catch up on.
posted by Paul Slade at 5:49 AM PST - 8 comments

On the heels of last year's pepper spray incident, Phoenix Jones has once again been filmed in an altercation on the streets of Seattle. Only this time, it occurred under the auspices of the municipal "mutual combat law," and it got violent.
posted by troll at 4:11 AM PST - 109 comments

November 9

While developed countries are pondering whether they should sign up to The Kyoto 2 Protocol and cut greenhouse gas emissions by 5% by 2020, based on 2000 levels which may be of questionable impact, the tiny Pacific territory of Tokelau has ditched its primary source of electricity generation, costly diesel imports, in favour of 100% renewable solar power, becoming the first nation in the world to do so, at a time when the global energy systems of the 21C are struggling towards decarbonisation. [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 10:36 PM PST - 60 comments


Quasi-muppets get wasted at a rich kids graduation bash in Your Parent's Cocaine by Oakland's The Coup. [more inside]
posted by kuujjuarapik at 5:09 PM PST - 20 comments

"You sit down and pull the visor over your head. The visor interior is soft and enveloping. You squeeze the drip tube between your teeth and sickly sweet fluid floods your mouth. Pulses fire into your retinas." howling dogs is a work of interactive fiction by game designer Porpentine. It is a strange story about a person who lives in a cell and imagines strange scenes for a living. Endorsed by Emily Short, and made with Twine. Takes about 10 to 15 minutes with multiple endings. Via.
posted by codacorolla at 4:22 PM PST - 17 comments

December was Christmas. January was New Years. April was Easter. And the Fourth of July. But now it's Thanksgiving! Which is held on a Thursday, not a Friday.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 3:35 PM PST - 26 comments

Fuck You Daily Mail. Martin Robbins of The Pod Delusion, gives a 20 minute presentation of his thoughts concerning The Daily Mail (slyt).
posted by jontyjago at 3:31 PM PST - 22 comments



In the early years of the 20th century, a pair of ex-piano retailers invented an instrument that looked something like a miniature piano. Manufactured by the Toledo Symphony Company it was called a Dolceola. But why read about a musical instrument, when you can hear one? A Dolceola demonstration by Andy Cohen. Ray Skjelbred playing "Dolceola Blues". [more inside]
posted by fings at 1:52 PM PST - 16 comments

"My friend showed me around the MUNI Kirkland bus yard. MUNI is the municipal public transit system serving the city and county of San Francisco. It will turn exactly 100 later this year." [via]
posted by brundlefly at 1:14 PM PST - 15 comments

A new study in which researchers have compared the last 10 years of actual climate data with the world's most sophisticated climate simulations and found the models predicting the most extreme global warming have been the most accurate in predicting the actual climate over the last 10 years. That means if those models continue to hold true, the world could be in for a devastating worst case of 4 to 6 degrees C by 2100. There are scientists who lay out the logic why human civilization could not survive. "If you have got a population of 9 billion by 2050 and you hit 4 degrees, 5 degrees or 6 degrees, you might have half a billion people surviving." (Previously; via)
posted by stbalbach at 1:05 PM PST - 173 comments

So was it worth it? Well of course not. It turns out it was just advertising. There was no higher calling. No ultimate prize. Just a lot of faded, yellowing newsprint, and old video cassettes in an obsolete format I can’t even play any more even if I was interested. Oh yes, and a lot of framed certificates and little gold statuettes. A shit-load of empty Prozac boxes, wine bottles, a lot of grey hair and a tumor of indeterminate dimensions.
[more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:26 PM PST - 46 comments

"Forcible entry has always been a primary goal of the fire service." An illustrated reference guide to breaking in to buildings with the goal of preserving property and saving lives. [more inside]
posted by jjwiseman at 12:03 PM PST - 24 comments

NASA will send you an email or text alert when the International Space Station is visible from your area. IBM scientists have recently made significant advances in nanotechnology. A mathematician thought a poorly-encrypted headhunting email from Google was testing him, but he had actually discovered a major security hole. All of this found via The Brief: A Daily Briefing of Technology News Worth Caring About from MeFi's own nostrich. [via mefi projects]
posted by davidjmcgee at 11:57 AM PST - 15 comments

Return of the Living Dead (NSFW) is one of the greatest zombie movies ever made. Not only does it have loads of great looking zombies in it, it's one of the few zombie movies, besides its sequel, that has a perfect blend of humor and horror.
posted by Egg Shen at 11:56 AM PST - 43 comments



Just in case you haven't overdosed on American politics: Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington Most Corrupt members of Congress (Full 2012 report - pdf). [more inside]
posted by IvoShandor at 10:55 AM PST - 22 comments

John McAfee is the founder of the McAfee security software company, one of the first and, to this day, one of the biggest. But it's what he has done since leaving the company in 1994 that has attracted him notoriety. After working on instant messaging software for a few years, McAfee devoted himself to thrill-seeking: yoga, jet skiing, and "aerotrekking," or flying small aircraft at low altitudes. After the 2008 financial crisis reportedly wiped out most of his personal fortune, once estimated at $100 million, McAfee decamped to Belize, where he began promoting a business venture aimed at halting the spread of bacterial resistance to antibiotics. But as science writer Jeff Wise (who also wrote the aerotrekking article) detailed after interviewing him in 2010, McAfee's commitment to the project seemed half-hearted at best, and his behavior came off as erratic and even paranoid. In a follow-up article, written after Belizean police raided McAfee's compound on suspicion of illegal weapons possession and drug manufacturing, Wise explores how "the enlightened Peter Pan seems to have refashioned himself into a kind of final-reel Scarface."
posted by Cash4Lead at 9:38 AM PST - 82 comments

William Gibson predicted this would happen over sixteen years ago.
posted by thewalrus at 9:33 AM PST - 65 comments

"Unwrapping the history of Mexico's real national snack uncovers classism, dynamite, and shifting definitions of culture." The history of tacos, the linguistic history of the word "taco", and the tenuous notion of an "authentic taco" have a whole complex of intersecting stories behind them. "The Messy Business of Tacos" is an excerpt from food historian Jeffrey Pilcher's Planet Taco: A Global History of Mexican Food. [more inside]
posted by clavicle at 9:32 AM PST - 31 comments

Mixing Digital Sculpture with Real Objects (SLVimeo)
posted by gwint at 8:44 AM PST - 8 comments


Hellblazer, the DC/Vertigo comic starring Alan Moore created occult investigator John Constantine, is being cancelled at issue #300 to make way for a new comic set in DC's New 52 universe. Hellblazer was DC's longest running continuously numbered comic and it's cancelation marks the last of the DC Comics characters with Vertigo titles being taken back into the mainstream DC universe (previously). Vertigo was originally an imprint  for mature readers occult themed titles and creator owned work, though it has changed over the years with an adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo becoming the first Vertigo to receive TV advertising
posted by Artw at 8:11 AM PST - 85 comments


"the most embarrassing verse in the Bible" - C.S. Lewis "this generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled" - 2000 years of arguments over the central verse in all prophecy. The meaning of Christianity, and hence much of our culture, hangs on the disputed meaning of a single word, "genea" or "generation." [more inside]
posted by EnterTheStory at 6:58 AM PST - 103 comments


For years now, the primary way of representing and storing color on a computer display has been to define it as existing in three dimensions: Red, Green, and Blue. What if that's wrong? “While the appearance of a color on a screen can be described in three dimensions, the blending of color actually is happening in a six dimensional space,” How Fifty-Three, developers of the iPad painting app Paper, used a theory of paint optics from 1931 to develop a better color mixer.
posted by gauche at 6:25 AM PST - 28 comments

Human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) is a hormone produced during pregnancy and a marker in many pregnancy tests. After one man tested himself for pregnancy "for shits and giggles", his friend posted the surprising result in Rage Face form on Reddit... only to find out that elevated hCG levels in men are actually not lulzy (Reddit thread), resulting in an emergency visit to the doctor and a more thoughtful follow-up Rage Face comic.
posted by elgilito at 5:34 AM PST - 22 comments

The Nine Circles of Scientific Hell ; Dante updated for the age of scientific misconduct. Via
posted by TedW at 4:58 AM PST - 10 comments

Ken Liu's "Paper Menagerie", the first work of fiction to win the Hugo, Nebula, and World Fantasy awards, is now available to read in full at io9.
posted by Errant at 4:06 AM PST - 23 comments

Well now, this is an interesting discovery... Reexamination of data collect through HARPS has resulted in finding three additional planets bringing the total to six. One of which is safely within the goldilocks zone of its star.
posted by michswiss at 3:05 AM PST - 26 comments

"If you actually tried to picture Graham's number in your head, then your head would collapse into a black hole." SLYT discussion of a number beyond "stupidly, stupidly big." Previously.
posted by zanni at 3:02 AM PST - 35 comments

Yesterday on AskReddit: Where/how could an aspiring pot smoker such as myself buy weed on campus/near campus? Marked as best answer: *Cough*
posted by mannequito at 1:38 AM PST - 30 comments

November 8

Is Everyone on the Spectrum? "In the nineties, clinicians began reconceptualizing autism from a singular disorder to a cluster of related conditions on a spectrum of severity; as the criteria broadened to encompass less acutely impaired people—such as the more verbal group diagnosed with Asperger’s—prevalence rose dramatically. Before 1980, one in 2,000 children was thought to be autistic. By 2007, the Centers for Disease Control were reporting that one in 152 American children had an autism-spectrum disorder. Two years later, the CDC updated the ratio to one in 110. This past March, the CDC revised the number upward again, to one in 88 (one in 54, if you just count boys, who are five times as likely to have one as girls). A South Korean study from last year put the number even higher, at one in 38. And in New Jersey, according to the latest numbers, an improbable one in 29 boys is on the spectrum."
posted by bookman117 at 10:39 PM PST - 66 comments

After the Willard Asylum for the Chronic Insane (later the Willard Psychiatric Center) closed in 1995, the New York State Museum received an unusual donation: 427 suitcases, dating from the 1910s to the 1960s, which had belonged to patients who died while institutionalized. Photographer Jon Crispin has undertaken a project to photograph their contents. [more inside]
posted by alexoscar at 9:14 PM PST - 17 comments

"It seeped through the walls. It wafted up stairwells and elevator shafts. It was so bad, it rendered the other units on Nowell's floor unrentable. It was so bad, it made people dry-heave as they walked down the hallway. It was so bad, it caused the inspectors who examined Nowell's unit to gag and tear up. It was so bad, it attracted vermin. It was suffocating, overpowering, disgusting, distressing. It smelled like sour milk. Like diarrhea. Like mold." [The Man Who Smelled Too Much]
posted by vidur at 8:12 PM PST - 87 comments

Voters have made marijuana legal in Colorado and Washington. But what does this mean? Teasing out the subtleties of Washington State's Initiative 502 and Colorado's Amendment 64 will take some time. Here are some clues... [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 8:09 PM PST - 130 comments

The poor in America: In need of help Some 15% of Americans (around 46.2m people) live below the poverty line, as Ms Hamilton does. You have to go back to the early 1960s—before Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society programmes—to find a significantly higher rate. Many more, like Ms Dunham, have incomes above the poverty line but nevertheless cannot meet their families’ basic monthly needs, and there are signs that their number is growing. Once upon a time the fates of these people weighed heavily on American politicians. Ronald Reagan boasted about helping the poor by freeing them from having to pay federal income tax. Jack Kemp, Bob Dole’s running-mate in 1996, sought to spearhead a “new war on poverty.” George W. Bush called “deep, persistent poverty…unworthy of our nation’s promise”. No longer. Budgets are tight and the safety net is expensive. Mitt Romney famously said he was not “concerned about the very poor” because they have a safety net to take care of them. Mr Obama’s second-term plan mentioned poverty once, and on the trail he spoke gingerly of “those aspiring to the middle class”. “Poor” is a four-letter word.
posted by infini at 7:51 PM PST - 23 comments

The Black Paintings is the title given to a series of works by Spanish artist Francisco Goya painted directly on the walls of his house from 1819-23. Their provenance has been doubted much like that of The Colossus, which has recently been attributed to Goya's assistant. Either way, the Black Paintings are masterpieces and have pride of place in the Museo del Prado in Madrid, which has put them all online in high resolution (you can save images to your computer in high resolution). [Goya previously]
posted by Kattullus at 7:26 PM PST - 9 comments

Disney meets Dada: Intensive Gaston Unit [SLYTP]
posted by Rory Marinich at 5:17 PM PST - 35 comments


In the early 20th century, the men of Princeton came up with a way to protect their two or three nice suits worn daily on campus from spilled beer (and the more likely vomit): The Beer Suit. Originally worn only by seniors and as white denim overalls, shirt and tie, with a white denim jacket over the top, future classes began decorating their jackets with slogans and designs of the day with current classes often going for black and orange jackets with tiger elements. You can see some of the original Beer suits at the Fashion Institute's Ivy Style exhibit in NYC, going through January 2013, or catch a Princeton class reunion where the beer jackets must be worn (unwashed) until your 25th reunion, when you can don a proper alumni blazer.
posted by mathowie at 2:49 PM PST - 33 comments

A Vast Left-Wing Competency: "How Democrats became the party of effective campaigning — and why the GOP isn’t catching up anytime soon." Sasha Issenberg, author of The Victory Lab, has been writing a series of posts on Slate that focus on different aspects of "the new science of winning campaigns". [more inside]
posted by flex at 2:12 PM PST - 103 comments

Rolling Jubilee. New from Occupy Wall Street, a program to buy distressed debt for the sole purpose of forgiving it. It starts off with a show. Previously
posted by charred husk at 2:05 PM PST - 76 comments

"The Turn of the Screw: James Watson on The Double Helix and his changing view of Rosalind Franklin": Maggie Koerth-Baker's brief interview with Watson, co-discoverer of the structure of DNA, about his "infamous" treatment of Franklin in his book The Double Helix, on the occasion of the publication of an annotated and illustrated edition of the same.
posted by ocherdraco at 1:36 PM PST - 32 comments

Ad creatives, designers, animators, directors, illustrators and more have taken time out to dress up their favourite worst feedback from clients, transforming quotes that would normally give you a twitch, into a diverse collection of posters.
posted by Fleebnork at 1:31 PM PST - 52 comments

Don Pettit, famed International Space Station photographer, gives an interesting talk at Luminance 2012 about the opportunities and difficulties of shooting aboard a space station.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 1:22 PM PST - 6 comments

Planet Toronto - a timelapse video. After catching the attention of Toronto's tourist board through selfmade "video love letters to Toronto" uploaded to Vimeo, Ryan Emond was given a budget and access to more locations to create a longer version.
posted by modernnomad at 12:28 PM PST - 19 comments

"What does that mean? It's really weird what I'm saying." [audio] Five year old Mitchell Cait-Goldenthal reads an excerpt from former media mogul and convicted felon Lord Conrad Black's apoplectic post-US election Huffington Post essay [warning: bombast]. From CBC Radio's news show The Current. [more inside]
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:19 PM PST - 73 comments

Innovative and extraordinarily talented British animator Run Wrake is perhaps best known for the short films Rabbit (previously, details) and The Control Master (previously). Run passed away suddenly just a few weeks ago, less than a year after having been diagnosed with cancer. He was 47. Here is an interview with Run from APEngine. [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 11:40 AM PST - 11 comments

"Why did small business owner and gamer dad Mike Hoye spend the last few weeks hand-tweaking the text in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker so that the main character was referred to as a girl instead of a boy? As he put it, 'I’m not having my daughter growing up thinking girls don’t get to be the hero.'"
posted by hot soup at 11:29 AM PST - 67 comments

"I'm on record as saying that Gerhard was, for twenty years, the best pure pen-and-ink artist in the comic-book field and that it was unfortunate that he got pigeon-holed as a mere inker and that Dave Sim's "pariahdom" extended to someone who never voiced an opinion about anything one way or the other." - Dave Sim [more inside]
posted by nanojath at 10:32 AM PST - 36 comments

The Puffin Charmer or How one man restored the Atlantic Puffin population of the United States. Via Slate.
posted by Atreides at 10:12 AM PST - 25 comments





The Evolution of Type - by Andreas Scheiger. More examples here.
posted by plinth at 7:47 AM PST - 2 comments

Exit polls for the 2012 presidential election (CNN). The most likely bottom line from AP: "Overall, 53 percent had a favorable opinion of Obama, while only 47 percent felt that way about Romney. And 53 percent felt Obama was more in touch with people like them than Romney was." Initial reactions among the disappointed.
posted by Brian B. at 7:20 AM PST - 512 comments

Can Neil Gaiman restore the Cybermen to their original greatness? - Neil Gaiman's second episode of Doctor Who will feature the classic cyborg villains introduced by medical scientist Kit Pedler in The Tenth Planet
posted by Artw at 7:09 AM PST - 115 comments

"In 1911, the Saenger Brothers, Abe and Julian, operators of a drug business at Louisiana and Milam streets, decided to enter the amusement field. They were impressed with [Shreveport movie theatre operator E.V. Richards] and induced him to join them in their new field of endeavor ... In 1912 the Saenger Amusement Company was organized with Saenger Brothers, E.V. Richards and L. M. Ash as the stockholders. Richards continued as manager and an expansion policy was adopted which linked Texarkana, Monroe and Alexandria with Shreveport and thus formed the first Saenger chain of theatres in this area ... The company moved to New Orleans where the Strand Theatre, a building of magnificent modernity, was formally opened on July 4, 1917 ... In 1924 the company again inhaled deeply before exhaling a new record of expansion that established branches in 12 southern states. In 1926 and '27 further expansion took the company into Cuba, Jamaica, Panama and Costa Rica. During the expansion peak 320 theatres were involved in the holding company." Sadly, few remain. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:40 AM PST - 8 comments

Don't try this at home (or do!) international artists who make extraordinary and poetic machines (via): homemade satellites , rainbow and tornado generators , particle accelerators , and electronic musical instruments. [more inside]
posted by PistachioRoux at 2:21 AM PST - 3 comments

November 7

This video on the beauty and fascination of analog media is from the PBS Arts tmblr OffBook
posted by Isadorady at 11:55 PM PST - 15 comments

For some, it's a document examining a pivotal point in rock history with one of the biggest bands. For others, it is a eulogy marking the transformation of a vibrant force in music into ironic self-importance. Either way, David Guggenheim's 2011 film From The Sky Down [in two parts, ~90m total, trailer] is an interesting, somewhat historical, definitely hagiographic documentary about the struggles U2 faced between the end of the Joshua Tree tour and during the recording and release of Achtung Baby. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 11:28 PM PST - 70 comments

"We discussed the danger of partisan division, and the need for us, all of us, to come together and find common ground after a very rough and divisive couple of weeks. ... It is no secret that Brad and I had two very different visions for you and whom you date. Tonight, you have spoken, and Brad has prevailed." --- The American People Have Spoken About Our Relationship
posted by New Frontier at 9:34 PM PST - 19 comments

Internet sensation: Nine-year-old girl shredding defenses to the tune of 25 touchdowns Sam Gordon just wanted to run with the older kids. The coaches in the local tackle football league figured, hey, why not? Maybe they could turn it into a drill: Who can outrun Max's little sister? They were shocked to find the answer: no one. "Some kids, right before the contact, they stop," Sam told her father. "I don't. I just hit 'em."
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:59 PM PST - 119 comments

RIP Bob Quinn. If you've spent any time at the University of Washington, you'll likely recognize him as the guy who wandered, with his well-behaved off-leash dog, up and down the Ave, spending all day at various coffee shops and bookstores. Or if you were using heroin or were otherwise at high risk for HIV in North Seattle anytime between the 1980s and now, you likely recognize him because he may have saved your life. [more inside]
posted by librarina at 6:50 PM PST - 45 comments

However long it takes for a real victory to be certified—no matter what happens on Election Day, it will be too early to unfurl a "Mission Accomplished" banner—the once ragtag march of lovers has acquired an air of inevitability. Edith Eyde's prophecy is almost fulfilled: gays are more or less regular folk. All the same, many who came out during the Stonewall era are wondering what will be lost as the community sheds its pariah status. They are baffled by the latter-day cult of marriage and the military—emblems of Eisenhower's America that the Stonewall generation joyfully rejected. The gay world is confronting a question with which Jews, African-Americans, and other marginalized groups have long been familiar: the price of assimilation.
Love on the March by Alex Ross. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus at 6:16 PM PST - 60 comments

On Election Night 2008 in Seattle, Renee received a random celebratory text from a stranger. She saved that text for four years, until last night.
posted by litlnemo at 4:28 PM PST - 56 comments

Just in time for (American) Thanksgiving, Serious Eats' Kenji Lopez-Alt provides an illustrated dissertation on the finer points of Turduckening. Warning: Link contains pictures of dead birds in various states of undress.
posted by benbenson at 3:57 PM PST - 31 comments

The Gulf protection racket is corrupt and dangerous folly.
Here is a graphic showing UK arms sales to the Middle East and North Africa.
Is Britain arming oppressive regimes in the Middle East?.
However U.S. Arms Sales Make Up Most of Global Market.
posted by adamvasco at 3:20 PM PST - 19 comments

How I Lost Faith In The Pro-Life Movement: "What I want to share here is how I came to this realization. And if you, reader, are one of those who opposes abortion because you believe it is murder and you want to save the lives of unborn babies, well, I hope to persuade you that the pro-life movement is not actually your ally in this, that you have been misled, and that you would be more effective in decreasing the number of abortions that occur if you were to side with pro-choice progressives. If this is you, please hear me out before shaking your head." [more inside]
posted by flex at 2:01 PM PST - 544 comments


If ever there were a question about the ballooning scale of America's prison system, the Louisiana State Penitentiary provides an answer. It has its own golf course.
posted by Chrysostom at 12:58 PM PST - 25 comments

Actor Clive Dunn, best known for his role as Lance Corporal "Jonesy" Jones in Dad's Army, has died aged 92. A veteran comedy actor, Dunn was famous in the UK for his signature appearance in Dad's Army. Thanks to the BBC and endless repeats, he became well known outside the UK for his portrayal of the doddering Lance Corporal pressed back into service to defend Walmington-on-sea from an impending German invasion during WW2. The Home Guard based comedy had a large fan base.

There are a wide range of clips of his performances on the internet. Don't miss the Dad's Army movie which showed Dunn in his element.

Dunn was well known before he even set foot on the Dad's Army set from his work in the classic comedy series Hancock's Half Hour and The Tony Hancock Show. We also shouldn't forget his time as a pop star or a potato loving alien. But most importantly, don't panic.

Previously.
posted by arcticseal at 12:27 PM PST - 23 comments

The Gutenberg press, as Carr is well aware, did not precede or produce the literate subject, but merely facilitated its generalization by making the production of books more economical. Along the way it undoubtedly—through some of its own formal characteristics—exerted an influence on the text it carried... But there is a tendency in the critique of technology to over-emphasize such factors at the expense of farther-reaching socio-historical explanations.
In the latest issue of New Left Review, Rob Lucas discusses the work of Nicholas Carr and calls for a socioeconomic approach to the history of computing. [more inside]
posted by RogerB at 10:55 AM PST - 7 comments


MR-808 is a replica of the famous 1980s electronic drum machine TR-808 – with robots playing the drum sounds.
posted by dng at 9:45 AM PST - 23 comments

Korean robot prepares salad ... very slowly. It also is (apparently) capable of loading a dishwasher, although there's no video of that.
posted by wanderingmind at 9:34 AM PST - 24 comments


Whenever a new Bond film is released, the promotional push for it is huge. Sony, which is distributing the movie in many territories, has taken the bull by the horns with this one and commissioned a text adventure game loosely based on the character of James Bond.
posted by Egg Shen at 8:58 AM PST - 46 comments

From the guy who brought you Actual Cannibal Shia Labeouf and Christian Bale is at Your Party comes a new musical:
In every disaster movie, some guy bursts into the Oval Office and says, "Mr. President! There's an asteroid headed directly for the earth!" This is that guy's story. [password: calvert]
posted by Rory Marinich at 8:30 AM PST - 16 comments

And think about it for a second: this is bizarre. If Americans are in fact divided between two extremely different political ideologies, it would be an extraordinary coincidence if each of those philosophies were to hold the allegiance of nearly equal blocs of support. [more inside]
posted by memebake at 7:54 AM PST - 206 comments

The November 6th elections saw a lot of historic decisions made in the United States -- the first black president re-elected, marijuana legalized for the first time in two states, gay marriage affirmed by the voters in four, and even the first openly gay senator. But perhaps the most underreported result yesterday came from outside the country altogether: in the commonwealth of Puerto Rico, a solid majority voted to reject the island's current status and join America as the long-fabled 51st state. How the bid might fare in Congress is an open question, but both President Obama and Republican leaders have vowed support for the statehood movement if it proves successful at the ballot box (while D.C. officials ponder a two-fer gambit to grease the wheels). Though it would be the poorest state, joining the Union might bring economic benefits to both sides [PDF]. And politically, some argue the island might prove to be a reliably red state, despite the Hispanic population, although arch-conservative governor and Romney ally Luis Fortuño appears headed toward a narrow loss. But the most important question here, as always, is: how to redesign the flag? (Puerto Rican statehood discussed previously.)
posted by Rhaomi at 7:34 AM PST - 108 comments

ELECTRICITY FIGHT! (slyt- some audience responses NSFW)
posted by Phyllis Harmonic at 4:18 AM PST - 15 comments

The light from a primary rainbow is partially polarised. Now, in a paper accepted by the journal Astronomy and Astrophysics, the authors show how to use the weak signal from rainbows in starlight reflected by exoplanets to detect the presence of liquid water clouds. [arXiv preprint link]
In particular, liquid water clouds covering as little as 10%-20% of the planetary surface, with more than half of these covered by ice clouds, still create a polarized rainbow feature in the planetary signal. Indeed, calculations of flux and polarization signals of an exoplanet with a realistic Earth-like cloud coverage, show a strong polarized rainbow feature.
posted by Talkie Toaster at 2:49 AM PST - 21 comments

"In the 2000 election, approximately 70% of Muslims in America voted for Bush; among non-African-American Muslims, the ratio was over 80%. It can be safely said that if the Muslim community had voted the same way they had in 2000, [Romney] would have won." So what happened? [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 2:25 AM PST - 74 comments

"Curiosity – what’s inside the cube" is the first experiment out of Peter Molyneux-headed game studio 22cans. "Something amazing is hidden in the cube but only one player will be fortunate to discover what it is." You can get crackin' at the cube for free from the iTunes App store or Google Play. [more inside]
posted by disillusioned at 1:20 AM PST - 85 comments

November 6

Terminator Arm Dad. Does what it says on the tin. Single Link Live Leak (SLLL)?
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 2:53 PM PST - 28 comments

It happens after you've ran out of things to talk about with your partner, after you get your sh*t together and have talked about plans for a family. It is time to get engaged, send out the invitations, and start planning the wedding. NSFW audio
posted by Brent Parker at 2:41 PM PST - 24 comments

Election Day Divertimento: Mischa Maisky plays Bach Cello Suite No.1 in G (SLYT)
posted by growabrain at 1:59 PM PST - 21 comments

The first footage from the troubled, possibly doomed film adaptation of World War Z has been released [via io9]
posted by mediocre at 1:40 PM PST - 139 comments


No Doubt (mostly Gwen) are certainly not new to the world of pissing people off by appropriating their culture. Now Native Americans have taken issue with No Doubt's latest video, the band has apologized and pulled the offending clip. Native American writers such as Lisa Charleyboy lay out their issues with the depiction.
posted by Cosine at 12:14 PM PST - 104 comments

Can you make it through this post without squealing?
Plus hedgehog bath time! & other moments of squee, within [more inside]
posted by flex at 11:48 AM PST - 44 comments

C'mon over to Lucky's Amazing Sports Lists and kill a little time. The front page is impressive enough, but how about a list of all American football field goals in excess of 60 yards (including a long list in 6 pt type of all female place kickers in American football)? Looking for more focus? How about this page detailing the career of Dave Myers, the 1929 quarterback for the NYU team, who was Black. Basketball more your thing? Check out the history of the Gruman Aircraft Company pro teams, integrated in the 1940s! Or you could just peruse the list of basketball players who have scored 100 points in a single game. The design is crude, but there is far too much information to do justice to in a short post. (Via Stephan Fatsis on the Oct. 29 Hang Up and Listen sports podcast.)
posted by OmieWise at 10:35 AM PST - 4 comments

You loved Battlestar Galactica (but you may have been iffy on the ending), and you may have enjoyed Caprica, so now, coming soonish, in the most confusing way possible, is the long delayed Blood And Chrome. A web series, a sequel, a prequel, and movie and/or a DVD. Something like that. Probably starting this week.
posted by Mezentian at 6:58 AM PST - 95 comments

Pick a shark and follow his/her course through the oceans of the world.
posted by mygothlaundry at 6:15 AM PST - 39 comments


Meet The Climate Change Denier Who Became The Voice Of Hurricane Sandy On Wikipedia"Ken Mampel, an unemployed, 56-year-old Floridian, is in large part the creator of the massive Hurricane Sandy Wikipedia page. He's also the reason that, for nearly a week, the page had no mention of climate change."
posted by indubitable at 3:50 AM PST - 50 comments


The Grandmaster (Chinese language trailer) - Wong Kar Wai returns with a martial arts film based on the life of Ip Man.
posted by Artw at 3:02 AM PST - 34 comments

Around The Corner: How Differential Steering Works (9:31) is a brilliantly simple explination of the deceptively simple concept of differential steering by the Jam Handy Organization in 1937. It makes a great introduction to this more advanced modern explination (4:44) for the layman. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 1:30 AM PST - 27 comments

"Fundamentally flawed, unreasonable and irrational." In 2006, ABN Amro created a new type of financial instrument, the constant proportion debt obligation (CPDO), and sold a number of them to 15 local councils in Australia. Standard & Poor's rated these CPDOs as AAA. The Federal Court of Australia has now determined that both ABN Amro and S&P are liable for the losses the councils suffered when the value of the CPDOs collapsed during the financial crisis; the councils lost 90 per cent on the deal. S&P's rating of the CPDOs was found to have been "misleading and deceptive". Felix Salmon provides some analysis. [more inside]
posted by kithrater at 12:16 AM PST - 28 comments

Undecided on election day? Sat through all the debates and still not sure who's right and who's wrong? What you're really looking for is an endorsment by people you can trust completely, you can look up to, true heroes? Well, J. Caleb Mozzocco has taken the trouble to interview a representative cross section of superheroes and is starting to see a pattern. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:07 AM PST - 35 comments

November 5

BUYRAL (2:30 promotional video) is a new service that makes brands go viral, by the sale of bulk clicking on videos. Just another straight-faced tongue-in-cheek idea from Totonto's john st. advertising, who were previously seen on MeFi with Catvertising (and, yes, they have made some cat ads).
posted by oneswellfoop at 11:52 PM PST - 6 comments

What's Wrong With Online Reading, a slide presentation by Randy Connolly, argues that the relatively recent and increasingly popular approach to reading and learning - on computers, tablets and smartphones instead of traditional print - influences what and how we read, research and think, with disturbing consequences.
posted by Schadenfreudian at 9:23 PM PST - 50 comments

Documented: The People Who Were Killed By Hurricane Sandy [more inside]
posted by TangerineGurl at 8:26 PM PST - 62 comments

Elliot Carter, icon of modern American classical music and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, has died. [more inside]
posted by daisystomper at 7:36 PM PST - 26 comments

Stayin' Alive In The Wall In an attempt to distract myself from current events and tomorrow's election hilarity, I found this, which I now share with you.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 5:29 PM PST - 66 comments

Less than a day away from one of the most significant political battles of this century, it is critical that we not lose sight of that physical and mental conflict entered into on a daily basis in homes across this country. It is difficult to understand why we've intentionally designed our environment in a manner that enrages, terrifies, and taunts our most loved little ones, but we have.....and, alone, they confront it with bravery and determination.
posted by HuronBob at 5:21 PM PST - 27 comments

Fast tracking kebal - Plugging the cord into an electric socket, I was instructed to place my foot on top of one of the plates. Pak Edi held the other plate under his own foot, and immediately his leg began to quiver from the electric current.
posted by unliteral at 4:25 PM PST - 8 comments

Biological physicist Gabor Forgacs normally works on the “printing” of new organs for use in clinical trials, however, his technology could also be used to bioprint meat. In the first demonstration of its kind, Forgacs heats and eats a tasty morsel on stage. sltv
posted by infini at 4:24 PM PST - 6 comments

Murder of an Idealist. "For six hours on September 11, the American compounds in Benghazi, Libya, stood siege. When the attack was over, J. Christopher Stevens's body was pulled from the wreckage—the first U.S. ambassador killed by militants in over thirty years. Since then, his death has been politicized and the details of the attack distorted. Sean Flynn straightens out the story of Stevens's last days in Libya—and reveals the true believer we lost that day."
posted by homunculus at 2:40 PM PST - 36 comments

"Hipster Sexism consists of the objectification of women but in a manner that uses mockery, quotation marks, and paradox: the stuff you learned about in literature class."
posted by Isadorady at 2:16 PM PST - 147 comments

How to rig an election, and why anomalous exit poll data will no longer arouse suspicions of electronic vote flipping.
posted by Huplescat at 2:05 PM PST - 96 comments

The new "no comment": F-Off. Has electronic media created an F-bomb journalistic culture? "The close 2012 presidential campaign has been an especially ideal environment for this new mind-set of nonstop combat — marked by blazing email trails, streaked with profanity and accusations of incompetence and bad faith."
posted by Xurando at 1:11 PM PST - 20 comments

After Outside Over There, which is my favorite book of mine, a little girl wrote to me from Canada: “I like all of your books, why did you write this book, this is the first book I hate. I hate the babies in this book, why are they naked, I hope you die soon. Cordially…” ... I was so elated. It was so natural and spontaneous.... I should have written back, “Honey, I will; just hold your horses.”
posted by latkes at 1:07 PM PST - 20 comments

"From the Department of Awesome Anthropomorphic Foodstuffs:" photos of a particularly delightful Daikon radish, brought to you by @Konsai_umemama, a farmer in Hyogo prefecture.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:59 PM PST - 30 comments


Camilla the rubber chicken is the child of a chicken and an extra-terrestrial visitor (whose name is being concealed for legal and safety issues)." After a sad childhood in the circus, Camilla joined the Heliophysics team at NASA and befriended Little SDO, the satellite component of the the Solar Dynamics Observatory. In her capacity as SDO mascot and astrochick, Camilla flew into space with Little SDO, flew into a solar radiation storm, continues to monitor space weather, and is training for a trip to the International Space Station alongside astronaut Lt. Commaner Wiseman. Camilla also participates in science outreach and education programs, and she's currently in Australia, preparing to run the solar eclipe marathon! [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 12:10 PM PST - 8 comments

Charlie Pierce is a longtime sportswriter and author who has, among other things, reported for Grantland, Slate, and the Boston Globe, paneled on more than a few games of Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, and fished diapers out of trees as a state forest ranger. He's also made a name for himself as one of the sharpest and most incisive political columnists since Molly Ivins. The lead writer for Esquire's Politics Blog ever since a caustic article on former Delaware Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell cost him his Globe job, Pierce has churned out an uninterrupted stream of clever, colorful, and challenging commentary on the 2012 election season and its implications for the nation's future, dispatches often seething with eviscerative anger but shot through with deep love of (or perhaps grief for) country. Look inside for a selection of Pierce's most vital works for some edifying Election Eve reading. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 10:21 AM PST - 73 comments

On Kate Moss, and Taking One for the Team: "So, earlier this week Vanity Fair published a rare interview with Moss, in which the model, who is well-known for her circumspection, is unusually frank about the early years of her career. Moss was still a skinny, gangly teenager when she was plucked from mediocrity in Croydon and catapulted to superstardom. She was barely an adult, almost still a child, when she did her first topless photo shoot, with Corinne Day for The Face. In the interview, she talks about how uncomfortable this made her... This isn't the only the only revelation Moss made during the interview. It also turns out that the famous Calvin Klein campaign she did in 1992 with Mark Wahlberg gave her a nervous breakdown... Conveniently ignoring the fact that when the pictures were taken, Moss wasn't 'the face of the '90s', but a skinny teenage girl who cried because she was made to take her clothes off, Needham continues by saying that Moss' skinny frame 'seemed to encapsulate the euphoria of those long-distant times.'" [more inside]
posted by flex at 9:10 AM PST - 92 comments

Our aim is to examine [Paris's] connection to its underground in a way no one has before: we will attempt to walk from the southern edge to the northern, using only catacombs, telecom tunnels, sewers and other hidden infrastructure. It is a 14-mile trek, every step illegal.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:06 AM PST - 56 comments


What we currently call breast cancer should be thought of as 10 completely separate diseases, according to an international study which has been described as a "landmark". The categories could improve treatment by tailoring drugs for a patient's exact type of breast cancer and help predict survival more accurately. The study in Nature analysed breast cancers from 2,000 women [Abstract] . It will take at least three years for the findings to be used in hospitals. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 12:58 AM PST - 37 comments

The Fifth Problem: "If this were a boxing match, with one of the boxers pressed in the corner, bloodied, desperately trying to hold his own against the barrage of punches falling on him (many of them below the belt, I might add), that would be the equivalent of the final, deadly, blow. The problem looked innocent enough at first glance: given a circle and two points on the plane outside the circle, construct another circle passing trough those two points and touching the first circle at one point." Edward Frenkel, now Professor of Mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley, details the curiously baroque way Moscow State University chose to discriminate against talented Jewish math students: By quizzing them with fiendishly difficult math problems with deceptively simple solutions that are nearly impossible to find. [more inside]
posted by flug at 12:43 AM PST - 41 comments

November 4

Gary Yost is a volunteer fire spotter at the Mount Tamalpais fire lookout. He made a beautiful video of "a day in the life" which has gone viral--somehow didn't make it to Metafilter yet.
posted by agatha_magatha at 9:53 PM PST - 28 comments

He examined the label. It said the beer was no longer brewed in Bremen. He looked more closely at the fine print: “Product of the USA.” This was profoundly unsettling for a guy who had been a Beck’s drinker for more than half his life. He was also miffed to have paid the full import price for the 12-pack.
posted by troll at 7:40 PM PST - 230 comments

Broodhollow is a new webcomic that has been pithily described by its creator as “Tintin goes to Innsmouth.” It’s a bit of Lovecraftian horror with subtly detailed artwork. Be sure to check out long-running companion website Ichor Falls, a “…short fiction site for the discerning horror/terror enthusiast." Great starting points include curious little thing and candle cove (previously). [more inside]
posted by Existential Dread at 5:44 PM PST - 20 comments

Among the ballot initiatives up for consideration on Tuesday is California's Proposition 34, which would eliminate the death penalty in favor of life imprisonment without parole. If successful, this measure would make California the 18th state to abolish capital punishment, following Connecticut's April 2012 abolition. It would also apply retroactively to the 727 people currently on death row in the state, the most of any state in the country by nearly 100%. While support has been increasing for Prop 34, as many as 17% of California voters remain undecided. [more inside]
posted by likeatoaster at 4:20 PM PST - 135 comments

A massive shortage of gas all over New York and New Jersey is fueling hours-long lines stretching blocks or even miles. A big part of the problem has been power shortages to gas stations and refineries. Nevertheless, some argue that laws preventing gas prices from spiking in response to the disaster ("price gouging") are making things much worse, discouraging businesses from staying open in tough conditions and preventing entrepreneurs from profiting from any clever ways of increasing supply. Others admit gouging has some advantages, but still consider it ethically dubious. Gouging seems to be happening informally regardless.
posted by shivohum at 3:03 PM PST - 494 comments

CHRISTOPHER ALEXANDER: The thing that strikes me about your friend's building -- if I understood you correctly -- is that somehow in some intentional way it is not harmonious. That is, Moneo intentionally wants to produce an effect of disharmony. Maybe even of incongruity.

PETER EISENMAN: That is correct.

CHRISTOPHER ALEXANDER: I find that incomprehensible. I find it very irresponsible. I find it nutty. I feel sorry for the man. I also feel incredibly angry because he is fucking up the world.
A debate — old, but still relevant — between architects Christopher Alexander (whose new book The Battle for the Life and Beauty of the Earth depicts the struggle between his worldview and Eisenman's at length) and Peter Eisenman (who here discusses his frustrations with liberals and the avant-garde).
posted by Rory Marinich at 2:32 PM PST - 55 comments

Every Woody Allen Movie
posted by Egg Shen at 1:19 PM PST - 75 comments

The International Ski Federation (FIS) has denied Lindsey Vonn's request that she be able to compete in a men's World Cup downhill race at Lake Louise, Alberta on November 24. The US Ski and Snowboard Associaton had petitioned the FIS in support of Vonn's request and the President of Alpine Canada has expressed his disagreement with the FIS decision. The New York Times explained that Vonn spends time training with men, often races on men's skis, and "has, at times, been faster than men in training." The BBC reports Vonn said, "I'd like the chance to compete against them and see where I stand."
posted by Area Man at 12:21 PM PST - 47 comments

A slideshow of trick-or-treating jokes and other Halloween vignettes in Brooklyn. [more inside]
posted by drlith at 12:15 PM PST - 17 comments

When I came to the US, I heard about Mensa — the high IQ society. My IQ had never been tested, so I was curious. I was told that there was a special IQ test for non-English speakers and that my fresh immigrant status and lack of English knowledge was not a problem. I signed up.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 11:53 AM PST - 164 comments

Richard Florida (previously, 2) speaks to leaders [flash 11mins] of the APEC nations, November, 2011. [more inside]
posted by de at 10:12 AM PST - 21 comments

Oliver Burkeman on happiness through negative thinking: "I think many of the techniques that claim to enable us to achieve happiness don’t work. They are too focused on strenuously stamping out any trace of negativity, rather than cultivating the conditions of real happiness... We are all to some extent in its grip, whenever we think that the way to achieve whatever we’re trying to achieve is to go after it vigorously, and that if we believe it will all work out fine then it will." A "five books" interview with the author of The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can't Stand Positive Thinking. [more inside]
posted by flex at 8:32 AM PST - 49 comments

Back in 1999, Wandering Earl left home for a three month trip to Asia that still hasn't ended. As a permanent nomad, Earl's aim is to demonstrate that long-term travel is not a crazy fantasy, but a very real lifestyle option instead. Find out where Earl is now, and where he's been on his blog. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 7:41 AM PST - 64 comments

IMDB top 250 (+ 53 ) films in 2.5 minutes. (some NSFW content)
posted by HuronBob at 6:16 AM PST - 45 comments


Is "Catcher In The Rye" outdated and outmoded? Jessica Roake at Slate thinks so. And she's backing the author of "Cloud Atlas" when it comes to the new champion...
posted by dr. zoom at 12:02 AM PST - 153 comments

November 3

Last year, after Halloween, Jimmy Kimmel had parents troll their kids for cheap laughs by telling them that they had eaten all their candy. While many observers, including some Mefites, felt that lying to your kids in this way was being willfully-mean, it garnered 34 million hits on YouTube, so naturally, he did it again. Whether you think this is funny or not is definitely debatable; but if you're an old curmudgeon, like me, perhaps 3 year-old Madeline might just restore your hope for humanity.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 8:04 PM PST - 124 comments

Coyote Man, Mr. President & the Gunfighters. A prose poem, written by Gary Snyder, that should be required reading for whoever is in the White House on January 20.
posted by John of Michigan at 7:56 PM PST - 14 comments

On November 3 1957, Лайка, also known as Laika The Space Dog is launched into orbit around the planet earth. A small mongrel chosen for her patient temper, the Soviet Space Program gloried in her achievement, but when she was sent into space, there was no plan in place for a proper re-entry into the earth’s atmosphere. When pressed for details, the USSR media eventually claimed that she was peacefully euthanized with drugged food after six days in orbit. Documents released years later revealed that after six hours and four orbits, she died from a faulty heat-shield malfunction. Her spacecraft disintegrated five months later... But what if Laika didn’t die? [more inside]
posted by ovvl at 5:33 PM PST - 73 comments

Cosmos: A Personal Voyage is a thirteen-part television series of one hour shows written by Carl Sagan, Ann Druyan, and Steven Soter, that was aired at the tail end of 1980 and was - at the time - the most widely watched series in the history of American public television. It is best introduced by an audio excerpt of one of his books, The Pale Blue Dot. Inside is a complete annotated collection of the series. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 5:07 PM PST - 46 comments

Iron Baby and Dragon Baby, the inevitable prequels for two movie franchises, from Patrick Boivin, creator of AT-AT Day Afternoon (previously).
posted by Doktor Zed at 4:16 PM PST - 5 comments

Beautiful Georgia, my adopted state as I finish life’s journey ... my last year ever to vote in a presidential election. I wanted to feel part of this great privilege, wanted to again walk out of my precinct tapping my Georgia Peach voter sticker. Even if the day were dark, gloomy and cold, the sun would be shining. One Georgia nonagenarian's quest for voter ID
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 3:46 PM PST - 46 comments

The Long Con: Mail-order conservatism From The Baffler.
posted by zoo at 2:08 PM PST - 76 comments

Street art; we see it every day from Rio to Paris and even the Lebanon.
But then there is Guerrilla Crochet.
posted by adamvasco at 1:53 PM PST - 14 comments

Eighty years ago Australia went to war against a fierce and terrible enemy threatening the very foundations of life in Western Australia. An enemy so tough the Australian commanding officer described them as "like Zulus whom even dum-dum bullets could not stop". Though the army did have the upper hand in the first engagements, dreams of a quick victory were dashed when the enemy's central command let its "unwieldy army split up into innumerable small units that made use of the military equipment uneconomic. A crestfallen field force therefore withdrew from the combat area after about a month". Yes, it's eighty years since the Emu War.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:37 PM PST - 27 comments

NOLA to New York Katrina survivors reach out to Sandy survivors
posted by ColdChef at 1:20 PM PST - 8 comments

The Indonesian Street Art Database (ISAD) is an artist-run project that aims to archive street art in Indonesia as a documentation of the country’s urban culture. Art Radar delves into the ISAD archives to explore the breadth of street art in Indonesia and the concerns of the country’s urban artists.
posted by infini at 1:04 PM PST - 2 comments

Let's call a bigot a bigot.
posted by Artw at 12:58 PM PST - 52 comments

Saturday flag links: Colorful EU flags (and more) and the old national food flags. A natural Canadian flag. Proposed Earth flag. A couple Inception flags. The flag of Oceania. Evolution of the US flag and wikipedia’s timeline of national flags. Dannebrog, the oldest state flag still in use (since 1219) and the flag of Christiania. One of the most famous photos of a flag, Soviet troops raising the flag of the Soviet Union atop the German Reichstag. The powerful flag of the NSDAP. A flag designer, the principles of flag design, and flags by design. 204 pixel art flags made for an Olympics video game. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 11:21 AM PST - 28 comments

The Post-Apocalypse Survival Machine Nerd Farm. The goal: "... to create a completely self-sufficient community that produces not only its own food, but also energy, tools, and raw materials for making those tools. "
posted by blue_beetle at 11:05 AM PST - 32 comments

It’s a fierce object, many-layered yet taut as could be. It’s a dense field made of raw materials so rarefied that even in combination the resulting effect is singular, tensile. The album in question is Fugazi Edits, for which Chris Lawhorn took the extensive discography of the hardcore band Fugazi and combined multiple songs into new hybrid compositions.
posted by Egg Shen at 11:02 AM PST - 10 comments

The Caretaker of Dreams Wins The first time the rainbow mysteriously appeared on a tunnel visible from the Don Valley Parkway, the North York parks department painted over it. But the guerrilla mural artist — known as “the Caretaker of Dreams” — persevered, eventually winning them over. Now, 40 years later, the city has officially restored the psychedelic mural that has brought smiles to countless grim commutes — just as the artist intended.
posted by modernnomad at 8:20 AM PST - 25 comments

Amateur astronomer Stuart Atkinson painstakingly stitched together 55 photos to create this stunning self-portrait of Curiosity sitting on Mars. (Click the picture for the full-size 5400 pixel-wide masterpiece.)
posted by hippybear at 7:54 AM PST - 113 comments

The Toolchest Site does what it says on the tin. Possibly the most mind blowing tool chest on the site is this masterful 1/12 scale reproduction based on the Hewitt chest at Colonial Williamsburg, done by celebrated miniaturist William Robertson. Everything works like the original, down to the lock and the included tools like the plane and the folding rule.
posted by Harald74 at 3:20 AM PST - 27 comments

In China, hipsters are called “cultured youth” when they're not being called "dumbassess", that is. [more inside]
posted by telstar at 1:43 AM PST - 71 comments

November 2

Odd Future member Earl Sweatshirt (previously) has released his first solo single since returning from Samoa. The confessional song by the 18 year-old rapper details the troubled period in his life that lead to his stay at boarding school. [more inside]
posted by chrchr at 8:35 PM PST - 19 comments

Bloomberg finally cancels NYC Marathon Reversing his earlier position, Mayor Bloomberg decides to cancel this year's marathon. [more inside]
posted by I_Love_Bananas at 5:52 PM PST - 143 comments

"Now, in 2012, it’s possible the women’s vote could effect the outcome the U.S. presidential election. You would think we’d also have moved beyond gender stereotypes depicted in these postcards, but they’re still strong." War on Women, Waged in Postcards: Memes From the Suffragist Era
posted by sarastro at 4:40 PM PST - 59 comments

Our Story in 1 Minute: "A tapestry of footage tracing the cosmic and biological origins of our species, set to original music" by Melodysheep (John D. Boswell). Aside from this latest video, Melodysheep has also recently posted a Bill Hicks/George Carlin remix - The Big Electron ("Two legendary comedians offer their perspectives on life, through song"); a remix of comedian Jim Breuer called Metal Songs for Kids, and a new Symphony of Science - Our Biggest Challenge: "A musical investigation into the causes and effects of global climate change and our opportunities to use science to offset it; featuring Bill Nye, David Attenborough, Richard Alley and Isaac Asimov." [more inside]
posted by flex at 3:52 PM PST - 6 comments


In 2008, the Muppetheads behind the Tough Pigs staged their own muppety election, in which Ernie (and running mate Bert) won the Presidency over a Fraggle ticket of Gobo & Red. Now they're doing it again, but with Ernie not going for a second term and inevitable favorite Kermit not running either, the 2012 Muppet Election is between a Sesame Street ticket of Grover/Cookie Monster and a Muppet Show ticket of Gonzo/Rizzo. And yes, there is negative campaigning on both sides. [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:28 PM PST - 26 comments

Rollin' Safari: Trailer 1. Trailer 2. Animated gif that inspired the post. [more inside]
posted by maryr at 1:55 PM PST - 6 comments

Stephen Fry in America is a six part BBC television series of one hour shows in which Stephen Fry travels across the United States of America. He travels, mostly in a London cab, through all 50 U.S. states and offers his unique variety of insight as well as his infectious optimism and genuine love for many things American. New World, Deep South, Mississippi [US Edit], Mountains and Plains, True West, and Pacific. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 1:47 PM PST - 95 comments

A Slower Speed of Light is a first-person game prototype, built by the MIT Game Lab, that emulates the visual effects of special relativity.
posted by brundlefly at 12:50 PM PST - 32 comments

The legendary Swiss graphic designer Donald Brun (1909-1999) was a master of the Object Poster (where the image is paramount in selling the product), an artform that thrived in the early and mid-20th Century before cheaper paper and printing and distribution methods made it virtually obsolete. Brun's work is marked by humor and whimsy, bright bold colors and shapes, a wide variety of graphic styles (although it is often compared to classic children's book illustrations), and animals. [more inside]
posted by julen at 12:19 PM PST - 7 comments

It's Not the End of the World: What the Ancient Maya Tell Us About 2012. The Foundation for Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies (FAMSI, previously) has a series of in-depth & visually rich presentations on Mesoamerican creation myths, concepts of time, and calendrics related to the up-coming (non)apocalypse. [more inside]
posted by Panjandrum at 12:11 PM PST - 27 comments


In 2010, 1st grader Katie Goldman was the bullied kid at her school for being a girl who was into Star Wars (which is, of course, only for boys). Geeks and fans across the net rallied to give moral support to Katie ("The Littlest Jedi") for standing up for who she wanted to be. Katie and her mother went on to lead an anti-bullying effort at Katie's school (which now observes December 10th as "Proud To Be Me Day") and Katie became a symbol of geek pride and anti-bullying, standing up at a birthday party for a boy who wanted to have his nails painted like the girls were getting. The experience became the source of book Bullied. In 2012, it was Katie's turn to show geek solidarity. The 501st Legion/"Vader's Fist", who had been so supportive when her story went viral, were now among those being taunted online for their cosplay geekery at a con, and Katie wanted to be a stormtrooper for Halloween to show her support. When the troopers heard that, the 501st's First Imperial Stormtrooper Detachment came together to raise the funds/materials/expertise and build a full-on custom-fitted set of proper stormtrooper armor ('77 movie specs and all), with just days to spare before Halloween, as a gift for the little girl whose courage inspired them so much. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 11:40 AM PST - 61 comments


"I’ve since discovered that dropping in on Steve Ditko unannounced is a pretty common practice. That does’t make me feel any better. I felt gross for having invaded someone’s privacy – there is zero excuse – but the fact that people do this as a sort of known event is even worse. I haven’t pulled that on Ditko since and I never will, but I suppose we’re all free to disrupt the man just to satiate our curiosity, or “just cuz”, as if he were a landmark attraction and not a person." -- On Ditko's eightyfifth birthday, cartoonist Michael Fiffe talks about Steve Ditko, the influence Ditko has had on his own comics and the incredibly gracious way in which he corresponded with him as a young clueless fan.
posted by MartinWisse at 11:10 AM PST - 5 comments

Arika Okrent deconstructs the signing of interpreter Lydia Callis to demonstrate how body language and facial expressions are used grammatically in American Sign Language. [more inside]
posted by torticat at 11:08 AM PST - 61 comments

Custom knives by Jay Fisher, Tomas Rucker, Ivan Campos, and Rich Derespina. [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 10:59 AM PST - 14 comments

What's In My Bag? The concept is simple - shoppers at Amoeba Records (locations: Berkeley, San Francisco and Hollywood) talk about the vinyl, CDs and DVD's they're buying. There's a bunch to watch, categorized via artists / customers / staff. A few to get you started - Bob Odenkirk, Jim Thirwell, Lee Ranaldo, Grimes, Elijah Wood, Mike Schank
posted by davebush at 10:53 AM PST - 20 comments


"The head of HM Revenue and Customs is to be grilled by MPs over revelations hundreds of tax evaders are to avoid prosecution and being named publicly after striking immunity deals with the taxman." [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 8:48 AM PST - 27 comments

The home front: Surrounded by barbed wire, sandbags and mud, this 60ft trench is barely distinguishable from those occupied by British soldiers fighting in the First World War almost a century ago. The enormous dugout has been painstakingly recreated by an ex-history teacher in his back garden in Surrey, and the dedicated 55-year-old even spent 24 hours living in its confines with a team of volunteers as part of his efforts to experience life as a WWI soldier.
posted by ShawnString at 7:37 AM PST - 47 comments


"We worked very much like a comedy troupe — you sit around at a writer’s table and say, 'Who has the best idea?' It’s like campfire stories, you just try to freak each other out." An interview with Drew Daywalt, short-form horror pioneer behind Fewdio (previously) and now Daywalt Fear Factory. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 7:22 AM PST - 2 comments



The British Military Still Uses Carrier Pigeons. Not really. But the skeletal remains of a WWII carrier pigeon were recently found in a chimney, with a coded message still attached to its leg.
posted by COD at 5:38 AM PST - 56 comments

The world record for Flash Anzan was broken this year at the 2012 All Japan Soroban [abacus] Championship. Competitors in Flash Anzan sum up 15 3-digit numbers that are displayed in turn within a set time. The record is now 1.70 seconds, which means that each number is displayed for just over 0.1s. Here is a video of a "slow" 1.85 seconds seconds where the numbers are barely readable. [more inside]
posted by milkb0at at 4:39 AM PST - 31 comments

November 1

Every few minutes of the day, all over the capital, people gather into small groups to share the same space and fleeting moment in time... simply to wait for something routine and forgettable as a London bus. In transient, with time to kill, and often among strangers, each collection of these individuals proves completely unique from the next. Each collection provides a little insight into London's incredible diversity, how they relate to their surroundings, and each other. The very deliberate intention with By the Bus Stop, was to capture those little moments which happen spontaneously, when the meeting of individuals is completely left to chance. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 10:47 PM PST - 37 comments

OMNI Magazine delighted, informed, and even confused geeks of many flavours, and is now available to be downloaded from the Internet Archive. [previously]
posted by batmonkey at 10:06 PM PST - 86 comments


His amazing music, ranging from haunting to groovy to velvety smooth, went barely noticed for most of his life. So it's oddly fitting that his death would pass barely noticed, too. Terry Callier died in Chicago last Saturday at age 67. [more inside]
posted by Hairy Lobster at 6:54 PM PST - 22 comments

Le Mew
posted by Mblue at 6:44 PM PST - 19 comments


Kurt Vonnegut went to Biafra shortly before its fall in 1970 (Biafra previously). This is what he had to say about it.
posted by ChuraChura at 4:17 PM PST - 27 comments

11 Legendary Monsters of Asia. 10 Legendary Monsters of Europe. 7 Legendary Monsters of South America. 10 Legendary Monsters of Australasia and Antarctica. 11 Legendary Monsters of Africa. 10 Legendary Monsters of North America Part 1, Part 2.
posted by davidjmcgee at 3:33 PM PST - 18 comments


Some people have made an interesting and clever 'goalkeeping machine', which prevents football (soccer) strikers from scoring goals, using high speed cameras and projectiles sent out to intercept the ball. And - obviously! - they've deployed it there, in the goalmouth, in a toilet.
posted by Hartham's Hugging Robots at 3:26 PM PST - 26 comments

12-year-old uses Dungeons & Dragons to help scientist dad with his research: Cognitive scientist Alan Kingstone wanted to test whether people look at each others' eyes or simply to the center of faces. Some had suggested an answer would be impossible to discern because humans' eyes are in the center of their faces. But Alan’s son, Julian, a fan of D&D, told his father about D&D monster characters that have eyes in unusual places, such as on their hands or tail. “[Julian suggested] if you just showed them these images, you could find out whether they are looking for the eyes or not. I thought, actually, that’s a very good idea,” Kingstone said (summarized from Cosmos). The paper describing the results - "Monsters are people too" - was published in the British Royal Society journal Biology Letters this month, with 14-year-old Julian named as the lead author.
posted by flex at 3:12 PM PST - 42 comments

My Fair Election crowd-sources pollwatching: "We hope that this information will be used by citizens, journalists, and election officials to identify the worst polling places and work to fix them. We hope that officials in charge of polling places with long lines or otherwise operate poorly will be embarrassed, held to account, and so motivated to do a better job." (via Hollie Russon-Gilman and Archon Fung)
posted by anotherpanacea at 2:06 PM PST - 21 comments

In 2009, the Dutch television network RTL reported on a proposal to build a Dutch-style floodwall across the Narrows at the mouth of New York harbor (SLYT), complete with an animation of what it was designed to protect against: flooding of 4 meters into Manhattan & the surrounding areas. This uncannily resembles what transpired this Monday.
posted by akgerber at 2:06 PM PST - 34 comments

From the mid 40s to the mid 50s Coronet Instructional Films were always ready to provide social guidance for teenagers on subjects as diverse as dating, popularity, preparing for being drafted, and shyness, as well as to children on following the law, the value of quietness in school, and appreciating our parents. They also provided education on topics such as the connection between attitudes and health, what kind of people live in America, how to keep a job, supervising women workers, the nature of capitalism, and the plantation System in Southern life. Inside is an annotated collection of all 86 of the complete Coronet films in the Prelinger Archives as well as a few more. Its not like you had work to do or anything right? [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 12:32 PM PST - 41 comments


October 31st gave us possibly the most unexpected Family Circus of all time. Not a photoshop, this is what appears in newspapers. And in case you're wondering, Jeff Keane did his homework.
posted by Legomancer at 11:14 AM PST - 91 comments

Asstrology is a number from Eric Idle's new musical, What About Dick?, which will be available for download on the 13th.
posted by clarknova at 11:13 AM PST - 17 comments

"My best start I win one-nothing," he recalls. "I have single, double, two RBI." A quote from Chi Cho Perez, father of the Perez brothers, chronicled in this classic 1990 Sports Illustrated article. Soberingly, Pasqual Perez, famous for among other things missing a start because he was circling Atlanta repeatedly, was found murdered in the Dominican Republic today.
posted by mcstayinskool at 10:35 AM PST - 15 comments

Trip-hop/downtempo DJ and producer Wax Tailor (autoplay media) just released Dusty Rainbow from the Dark (album trailer), a narrated concept album about childhood, melancholia, and escapism. Two videos Time to Go (featuring Aloe Blacc) and Heart Stop (featuring Jennifer Charles) have been released. The album combines vocal collaborations with movie-line heavy compositions constructed through the turntable and sampler. (An earlier example is I Don't Know from Tales of Forgotten Memories.) [more inside]
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 10:28 AM PST - 5 comments

The paintings are the work of none other than Jack Kevorkian, the late Armenian-American pathologist, philosopher, assisted suicide advocate, and convicted felon otherwise known as Dr. Death. They are strikingly well executed. Unlike the works of other improbable painters — Adolf Hitler’s multicolored bouquets and elegant nudes or Winston Churchill’s pastoral sceneries — Kevorkian’s canvases are markedly obvious and gruesomely, almost risibly, literal. And the man in the coma, the man on fire, and the man with the brains by his side look a lot like the auteur himself.
posted by latkes at 9:44 AM PST - 40 comments

Animation of prime factorization of the integers based on Brent Yorgey's factorization diagrams, described here. [via Data Pointed, previously.]
posted by albrecht at 8:17 AM PST - 35 comments

A small piece of Truman Capote’s famously unfinished novel Answered Prayers has come to light. The six-page story, “Yachts and Things,” found among Capote’s papers in the Manuscripts and Archives Division of the New York Public Library, is published in the December issue of Vanity Fair, out now in New York and nationally next week. The story will be available online in mid-November. [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 7:46 AM PST - 13 comments

Magic: The Gathering: Armageddon was a 1997 prototype arcade game by Acclaim, of which there are between 4 and 5 known extant copies (Ctrl/⌘+F "arcade"). It is not currently emulated, and no footage of the gameplay existed until Halalah on the ASSEMblergames forums obtained a copy of the board and posted a video.
posted by griphus at 7:21 AM PST - 17 comments

Last year, folks speculated that the One Laptop Per Child's plan to 'drop laptops from helicopters to isolated villages' in Ethiopia might mean that someone had been reading Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age a bit too closely. (previously) They had been, and they did it, and it worked really well.
posted by peripatetron errant at 6:52 AM PST - 121 comments

What really concerns librarians; what do they discuss when they self-organise and decide for themselves? After the inaugural UK event, the second UK Librarycamp, with around 200 attendees, was recently held; reflections by Frank Norman, Carolin Schneider [1] [2], Sarah Wolfenden, Amy Faye Finnegan, Shambrarian Knights, Michelle, Jennifer Yellin, Jenni Hughes, Bookshelf Guardian, Amy Cross-Menzies and Simon Barron, and by one of the organisers. [more inside]
posted by Wordshore at 6:17 AM PST - 10 comments

"During that trip I even had a leech stuck to my eyeball for a couple of days. We tried coaxing it off with some raw meat and salt." Robbie Shone takes eye-popping cave photos.
posted by unSane at 5:07 AM PST - 74 comments

The Case of the Mormon Historian: What happened when Michael Quinn challenged the history of the church he loved.
posted by andoatnp at 5:02 AM PST - 92 comments

Perhaps not as well known as Ackley's Ghost, whose legal, if not factual, existence is known to every American law student, the Greenbrier Ghost is still known as the only ghost whose testimony helped convict a murderer. Although commonly used to convict witches, spectral evidence largely fell out of favor after the Salem Witch Trials, until one West Virginia women's ghost accused her husband of murdering her.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 4:54 AM PST - 5 comments

Edward Gorey's gothic tales from the vault: ' Edward Gorey's arch eccentrics are on display in two reissues and a never-before-published story.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:02 AM PST - 14 comments