Radio Spiritworld (Inter-dimensional) is the only station broadcasting from the afterlife into the living world. Well, actually it's a half an hour of wonderfully inventive audio-comedy from Peter Serafinowicz and Robert Popper, writers and creators of Look Around You, who between them have worked on or appeared in all the recent British comedies you love. [iTunes download link] posted by Kattullus at 9:56 PM PST - 12 comments
Bob Dylan had a radio show, the Theme Time Radio Hour, from May 2006 to April 2009. The archive contains shows on themes such as Thanksgiving Leftovers, The Bible, and Women's Names (click on the arrows to download the full radio show). posted by Copronymus at 8:40 PM PST - 20 comments
"It's a stretch of pavement both enriched and torn apart by class and ethnic divisions. When you go over a bridge or under a viaduct on this street you've left one country for another. It's the American melting pot at full boil." Halsted Street USA. (1995, 56 minutes, Color) posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:22 PM PST - 13 comments
You are in a warm, dark, comfortable place. This has been your place since you became aware that you are alive. It's almost time to enter a different world now.
In 1986, Activision published a roleplaying computer game called Alter Ego. Unlike the action and fantasy titles that ruled the day, this game simulated the course of a single ordinary life. Beginning at birth, players navigated a series of vignettes: learning to crawl, reacting to strangers, getting a first haircut. The outcome of each scenario subtly influenced one's path, and with every choice players slowly progressed through infancy, childhood, adolescence, adulthood, and old age. Graphically minimalist -- one's lifestream is represented by simple icons, and the scenarios are all text -- the game was nevertheless engaging, describing the world in a playful, good-natured tone tinged by darkness and melancholy. And it had quite a pedigree; developer and psychology PhD Peter Favaro interviewed hundreds of people on their most memorable life experiences to generate the game's 1,200 pages of material. Unfortunately for Dr. Favaro, the game didn't sell very well. But it lives on through the web -- PlayAlterEgo.com offers a full copy of the game free to play in your browser, and the same port is available as a $5 app for iPhone and Android. More:Port discussion group - Wishlist - Vintage review - Original game manual (text or scans) posted by Rhaomi at 9:51 AM PST - 46 comments
I’m crammed into a burrow so small that my knees are up around my ears and the boom mike keeps slamming into my head, inhaling the potent scent of toffee-apple brandy and trying to drink a talking mouse under the table. But is it really the boom mike that’s making my head pound? I know for sure that my camera man doesn’t usually have two heads. I have to face facts. The mouse is winning.
"They're not out to make a quick buck, they're looking to protect the integrity of the franchise and its mythology." 1998's Star Trek Insurrection went through a number of different plots before becoming the film we ultimately saw. Starting out as Star Trek: Stardust, the first take on the idea involved Captain Picard going all Heart of Darkness on a former friend from his Starfleet Academy days in a bid to find the Fountain of Youth. That treatment evolved into a remarkably Avatarish story called simply Star Trek IX in which Picard must go upriver to kill a malfunctioning Data as part of a Federation/Romulan alliance to displace strange alien natives from a planet teeming with a valuable and rare ore (spoiler: Picard actually kills Data in this treatment, and Tom Hanks was supposed to have a major role somewhere).
Let the late Michael Piller guide you through the writing of Insurrection in his unpublished book Fade In: The Making of Star Trek: Insurrection (his "last great gift to the fans and to aspiring writers everywhere") in which he presents his original story treatments, story notes from his bosses at Paramount, surprisingly reasonable Trekker-type reactions from actors Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner, and much more. First made freely available by TrekCore.com, Piller's family has since asked that it be removed, but you'll still find the file roaming the Internet if you boldly go looking for it. [more inside] posted by Servo5678 at 6:38 AM PST - 104 comments
...if all these neocons who worship the Ancient Greeks, like Victor Davis Hanson, really want to know what their precious Greeks were like, those boy-fucking, throat-slitting, 400-verse war-song reciting founders of our glorious civilization and all that, they should go live in a Pashtun village.... Well, the Pashtun are sensible people too. They don’t have much to lose, and they’re not that scared of dying.... They’ve got nothing coming from the whole Thomas Friedman world, and they’d be fools to think they do.
The last roll of Kodachrome film was given to Steve McCurry, who took the famous Afghan Girl photograph with it, and yesterday was the last day that you could get it processed. here are some of the frames from that roll. previously posted by delmoi at 2:12 AM PST - 46 comments
"We tried to pick images that quickly became popular, generated hundreds of thousands of views, were interesting, and/or somehow changed the Internet as we knew it."Imgur has become the standard among social news and media websites for sharing images. With the weight of 20 billion annual views, Imgur presents The Best Images of 2010. (Anti-memesters beware, the list is full of 'em) posted by Taft at 2:50 PM PST - 51 comments
For all the faults of the poorhouse, the system it replaced was perceived to be even worse. In post-Revolution America, if you were poor, you could be "farmed out" at public auction to the lowest bidder. [more inside] posted by Knappster at 11:59 AM PST - 8 comments
After a test flight nearly ended in disaster at the start of the Civil War, Professor Thaddeus Lowe recovered his balloon and headed back North. Recognizing the potential use of air vehicles in the war, he managed to get an invitation to the White House in order demonstrate the capabilities of balloons in the war effort. [more inside] posted by nomadicink at 10:31 AM PST - 12 comments
Within that small and very specific sub-genre of musical Americana identifiable as the train imitation, there is one amazing performance, from 1926, that set the standard: Pan-American Blues. The man who recorded it did a fine and fanciful job of evoking the sounds of a fox chase as well, and his rhythmically compelling solo rendition of John Henry stands as testament to the potential for musical greatness achievable by one man and a humble harmonica. He was an African-American who was a founding member of the Grand Ole Opry, a musical institution that we rarely (as in, never) today associate with black people, and his touching and tragic story, documented here, is one that will be of interest to those concerned with the racial, economic and socio-cultural history of American popular music. He stands at one of its more unexpected intersections: his name is DeFord Bailey. [more inside] posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:31 AM PST - 15 comments
"In the late '60's I worked for Bell Labs for a few years managing a data center and developing an ultra high speed information retrieval system. It was the days of beehive hair on the women and big mainframe computers. One day I took a camera to work and shot the pictures below." posted by channey at 2:38 AM PST - 69 comments
"Cablegate Comix" is a series of comics "recounting true stories that came to light on November 28, 2010 — when WikiLeaks published confidential documents of detailed correspondences between the US State Department and its diplomatic missions around the world." 1, 2, 3, 4[more inside] posted by brundlefly at 10:43 PM PST - 17 comments
In My Darkest Hour There are a number of songs that evoke a similar image... these three share a kinship.
Arlo's song is his alone. Billy Joel's "Light as Breeze" was written by L. Cohen.
And, the final entry is L. Cohen's , which reverses the image a bit...and then turns it around again..."Suzanne" posted by HuronBob at 10:14 PM PST - 7 comments
Journalistic flamewar erupts over secret chat logs. It's a disagreement between Salon's Glenn Greenwald and Wired.com's Kevin Poulsen over the proper use of IM chat logs between Bradley Manning and Adrian Lamo. Revelant links within. [more inside] posted by chaff at 2:31 PM PST - 171 comments
What does it mean to be Canadian? It isn't about an ethnicity, a religion, a language, or a shared heritage or history. From CBC's Ideas comes the two-part radio documentary, Being Canadian. "From east to west, public intellectuals and private citizens (both new and old Canadians), tell film-maker Sun-Kyung (Sunny) Yi about the concerns, the questions, and the challenges of living together in a multicultural and diverse society." It is also the story of how and why a Korean family became Canadian, first in the law, and then in their hearts. posted by Hildegarde at 2:17 PM PST - 120 comments
The Empathy Deficit: "A recent study finds a decline in empathy among young people in the U.S." In fact, the report concludes "empathy levels have been declining over the past 30 years." Podcast on this topic here. posted by saulgoodman at 9:16 AM PST - 110 comments
19th-century newspaper ads for patented stomach cures and digestive aids [...] foregrounded mince pie as the K2 of digestive summits. But for every published warning on the dangers of mince, the newspapers published a poem, essay, or editorial praising it as a great symbol of American cultural heritage or a nostalgic reminder of mother love and better times bygone—or even, as the State of Columbia, South Carolina, asserted in 1901, a beneficial Darwinian instrument that had "thinned out the weak ones" among the pioneering generations.
In 1996 a film was released that combined the animated Looney Tunes with the reality based basketball star Michael Jordan. That film was called Space Jam. Incredibly, Warner Brothers still maintains the movie's website, which is a snapshot of web design from the time period. [more inside] posted by codacorolla at 7:37 AM PST - 70 comments
Nigeria's film industry produces 50 films a week. "Nigerian films are as popular abroad as they are at home. Ivorian rebels in the bush stop fighting when a shipment of DVDs arrives from Lagos. Zambian mothers say their children talk with accents learnt from Nigerian television. When the president of Sierra Leone asked Genevieve Nnaji, a Lagosian screen goddess, to join him on the campaign trail he attracted record crowds at rallies. Millions of Africans watch Nigerian films every day, many more than see American fare. And yet Africans have mixed feelings about Nollywood." posted by artof.mulata at 2:35 AM PST - 10 comments
The book “Traumgedanken” (“Thoughts about dreams”) contains a collection of literary, philosophical, psychological and scientifical texts which provide an insight into different dream theories. To ease the access to the elusive topic, the book is designed as a model of a dream about dreaming. Analogue to a dream, where pieces of reality are assembled to build a story, it brings different text excerpts together. They are connected by threads which tie in with certain key words. posted by chavenet at 1:10 AM PST - 8 comments
Google's sheer size and power is staggering - and of course a little disconcerting. But ultimately are they ensuring the internet remains open and user friendly? CBC Radio had a great piece on the Algorithm That Changed World on how Google has helped keep the internet useful and spammers at bay. As a user, I have not found any other search engine that come close in giving me useful results. Intelligent Life's take on Apple vs Google, shows how this open system vs closed system philosophical differences plays itself out with product strategy. Of course, Google's user-centric world can suck if you have ever written a book. posted by helmutdog at 4:14 PM PST - 106 comments
Using rarely accessible data from the criminal justice system, the Spatial Information Design Lab and the Justice Mapping Center have created maps of these “million dollar blocks” and of the city-prison-city-prison migration flow for five of the nation’s cities. The maps suggest that the criminal justice system has become the predominant government institution in these communities and that public investment in this system has resulted in significant costs to other elements of our civic infrastructure — education, housing, health, and family. Prisons and jails form the distant exostructure of many American cities today.
I'm still not sure why it's the list for 2011 when we're still not out of 2010 yet, but here's the latest from Project Censored of 25 under-reported stories. posted by anothermug at 7:47 AM PST - 19 comments
A Real Science of MindNeurobabble piques interest in science, but obscures how science works. Individuals see, know, and want to make love. Brains don’t. Those things are psychological — not, in any evident way, neural. posted by shivohum at 10:50 PM PST - 21 comments
From the opening frames of this mesmerizing video: "A crazy idea was born. Early sunday on Swordfish 2010 we got a crazy idea of duck-tape our GoPro Hero camera on the tip of a sword and do some swings to see how it looked. We started slow just to see if the camera was holding together, then stepping it up. All recording are done in real speed." The music really makes the video. (via) posted by SpacemanStix at 9:17 PM PST - 54 comments
Still Life with Animated Dogs is a witty and candid cartoon by Paul Fierlinger, animator of Sesame Street's Teeny Little Super Guy, recounting his life from being a dissident artist in 1960s Czechoslovakia to being a successful animator in the US. He tells his lifestory by talking about the dogs he's owned over the years, Roosevelt, Ike, Johnson and Spinnaker. Warning: Something may get stuck in your eye. posted by Kattullus at 4:40 PM PST - 8 comments
Take oysters, parboile hem in her owne broth, make a lyour of crustes of brede & drawe it up wiþ the broth and vynegur mynce oynouns & do þerto with erbes. & cast the oysters þerinne. boile it. & do þerto powdour fort & salt. & messe it forth.
Ted Chiang is perhaps the finest author in contemporary science fiction -- and the most rarefied.
A technical writer by trade and a graduate of the distinguished Clarion Writers Workshop, Chiang has published only twelve short stories in the last twenty years, one dozen masterpieces of the genre whose insightful, precise, often poetic language confronts fundamental ideas -- intelligence, consciousness, the nature of God -- and thrusts them into a dazzling new light.
Click inside for a complete listing of Chiang's work, with links to online reprints or audio recordings where available, as well as a collection of one-on-one interviews, links to his nonfiction essays, and a few other related sites and articles. [more inside] posted by Rhaomi at 11:11 AM PST - 116 comments
But this was a disaster with two distinct parts — first a blowout, then the destruction of the Horizon. The second part, which killed 11 people and injured dozens, has escaped intense scrutiny, as if it were an inevitable casualty of the blowout.
It was not.
David Barstow, David Rohde and Stephanie Saul report for the New York Times on the Deepwater Horizon disaster. [more inside] posted by spitbull at 6:14 AM PST - 72 comments
Did the Scots visit Iceland? New research reveals island inhabited 70 years before Vikings thought to have arrived. This appears to be the first physical evidence that confirms the stories of celitc monks being on the island when the Norse arrived. posted by novenator at 11:23 PM PST - 41 comments
For your listening pleasure, I present to you the Zelda Rag, performed (with no prior practice) by Tom Brier. When that gets old, there's also a ragtime adaptation of the horse race theme from the Ocarina of Time that is not to be missed. And if Zelda's too easy, you can try the theme from Ghosts and Goblins. And, finally, an actual rag from Final Fantasy VI: the Spinach Rag. [more inside] posted by kaibutsu at 8:55 PM PST - 22 comments
Animalarium is full of wonderful images and videos, contemporary and vintage, The Insects' Christmas is especially charming. Animals as an endless source of creative inspiration. An exploration of the finest in art, illustration, crafts and design from around the world featuring animals, both real and fantastic [slightly nsfw]. posted by nickyskye at 12:46 PM PST - 2 comments
Everybody knows TVTropes is the best and most time-killing-est way to learn about the clichés and archetypes that permeate modern media. But dear reader, there is so much more. Enter Useful Notes. Originally created as a place for tropers to pool factual information as a writing aid, the subsite has quietly grown into a small wiki of its own -- a compendium of crowdsourced wisdom on a staggering array of topics, all written in the site's signature brand of lighthearted snark. Though it reads like an irreverent and informal Wikipedia, its articles act as genuinely useful primers to complex and obscure topics alike, all in service of the project's five goals: "To debunk common media stereotypes; to help you understand some media better; to educate, inform and sometimes entertain; to promote peace and understanding (maybe); and... to facilitate world domination." Sounds about right. Click inside for bountiful highlights... if you dare. [more inside] posted by Rhaomi at 11:00 AM PST - 43 comments
These days, with Christmas getting more and more commercial, it's occasionally hard to keep track of all the reasons to celebrate. One of the big reasons though is a very special birthday. The birth of something that changed the world. I'm referring, of course, to the birth of the world wide web. [more inside] posted by sarastro at 10:42 PM PST - 21 comments
This Christmas Eve spare a thought for the Chrildren of Iceland, who will be suffering a traumatising visit from Kertasníkir, or "Candle Beggar", the thirteenth and final of the strange and somewhat sinister Icelandic Santas, or Yule lads, who are the childre of the ogress Gryla. Most of them don't seem to care if you've been bad or good - mainly they want to steal your food and wreck stuff. [more inside] posted by Artw at 9:11 PM PST - 27 comments
Amidakuji, or "Ghost Leg," is a lottery party game from Japan. At the top of a sheet there are a number of spaces for people to write their names. At the bottom there are prizes. There are an equal number of each. Between them is a map obscured behind a sheet. The map is made of straight vertical lines connecting the names and prizes. Connecting those lines at random intervals are horizontal lines. When it's time to pick winners, the sheet is removed and players can follow the lines to find their prize. You follow the line from your name down until you encounter any horizontal line, which you must follow, then continue down, continuing to follow all horizontal lines you encounter, until you reach your prize. No two horizontal lines can touch. Provided that, the process is perfectly deterministic and reversable. The same ends are reached whether you follow from the top down or the bottom up. If you have difficulty visualizing this, check the Wikipedia page. [more inside] posted by JHarris at 6:11 PM PST - 18 comments
On Christmas Eve, exactly 100 years ago, Luisa Tetrazzini, the most famous opera singer of her day, sang in the streets of San Francisco as a gift to the city she loved. 250,000 people, most of them survivors of the 1906 earthquake listened in silence as she began with "The Last Rose of Summer," then sang along as she ended with "Auld Lang Syne." posted by williampratt at 4:27 PM PST - 9 comments
(I've seen the term floating around for a bit, so I figured I'd write up a quick summary. My apologies if its too dumbed down; just trying not to leave anyone behind! Please note, most links NSFW due to language.)
Hashtag rap, previously also known as yoda raps (noun, not verb), was officially coined by Kanye West on Funkmaster Flex's HOT97 radio show on November 2. The term--a nod to the way online posts are tagged (especially on Twitter, which Mr. West is a noted user of) using hash symbols in order to categorize the post's content--refers to the recent rise in rap lines which drop the usage of "like" and "as", and instead substituting those words with a pregnant pause (which is sometimes dispensed with), thus truncating what is normally a simile or metaphor into a sort of short setup followed by a (hopefully) funny punchline. [more inside] posted by jng at 2:40 PM PST - 40 comments
Flickr user ElectroSpark collects and shares “random bits of vintage ephemera from mid-century vacationers,” with many in the form of charming round-cornered Kodachromes. In particular, his Fairs & Expos set with its collection of holiday snapshots from Brussels ’58, New York ’64 and Expo ’67 in Montreal, are all from a by-gone era. The collection includes both vintage graphics and photos. posted by netbros at 11:48 AM PST - 5 comments
Evocative photographs by Evgenia Arbugaeva of "nomadic tribes of reindeer herders in my homeland, the Republic of Yakutia, which is located in eastern Siberia." You can read more about the indigenous peoples of Arctic Russia here (as you might guess, the outlook isn't rosy), and if you're curious and want more links, there's a zillion of 'em here. posted by languagehat at 11:26 AM PST - 7 comments
Then That's What They Called Music is a series of posts on the Onion AV Club where writer Nathan Rabin (previously) listens to all of the NOW! That's What I Call Music CDs from 1999 onwards. The essays read like a history of a forgotten world, reminding you of terrible yet infectious pop tunes, and are full of great links, snappy writing and one man's struggle to deal with why the Black Eyed Peas, the most corporate band in America, are so popular. [more inside] posted by Sifter at 9:42 AM PST - 29 comments
For many years the BBC had a tradition of showing a dramatisation of a classic ghost story at Christmas. This tradition is being continued this year with Whistle and I'll Come to Youbeing shown tonight staring John Hurt. An adaptation of the same classic MR Jamesstory was shown in 1968 staring Michael Hordern beginning the tradition (1, 2, 3). [more inside] posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:14 AM PST - 22 comments
Stop and smell the roses. In this time of hectic preparation for year's end, last minute Christmas shopping, wrapping, baking etc. let us not forget the gift of idleness and its endearing virtue. Some may disagree, but what is the use of progress if it fails to offer time for relaxation and contemplation? Sit back, relax and enjoy your time off from the daily toil. Christmas is upon us with themessage of peace on Earth and goodwill toward men. (thanks be unto the Presurfer for this Christmas gift) [more inside] posted by caddis at 8:29 AM PST - 5 comments
It is late on Christmas Eve in Hong Kong; scarcely an hour to go before the 25th.
I'm unsure how accurate some of these are, but no matter, it's the spirit that counts: MerryChristmas to all, and to all a good night. posted by bwg at 6:57 AM PST - 5 comments
Connecticut was once the home of the national bell business, with more than 30 bell foundries based in East Hampton alone. Now a lone survivor, Bevin Brothers Manufacturing, is thriving there, manufacturing everything from cow bells with college logos for the football season to traditional sleigh and dinner bells. (Lifted from girlhacker) posted by growabrain at 11:26 AM PST - 6 comments
Do you sometimes feel underdressed at parties and or other would-be swanky deals? Do you want people to come up and tell you "This is a really volcanic ensemble you're wearing, it's really marvelous"! If so, just in time for the great annual suits and ties, black-tie, tuxedo festivities and the mythical 'Masquerade Ball' (Perfect Shoes. Perfect Waistcoat. Perfect Gloves. Perfect Mask. Don’t be shy, and don't forget to shake your tail.); the ultimate custom attire for the ultimate romantic look on new years eve, (or any other high-fashion affair) this genderless outfit is perfect for anybody; guaranteed to accentuate fluid curves, sharpen up your style, yet also bring forth that natural sharp angular profile, assured to put natural beautiful shiny skin-plates on display. Begin assembling today, if you want to assemble in time! That is all (oh yeah, brush your tongue-jaws before you go out, all of them). posted by infinite intimation at 9:40 AM PST - 11 comments
The snowpocalypse has hit Britain, again, and you've still not bought a snow shovel. Naturally, all the shops have sold out and have no idea when they'll get more. Let the Internet help you by sending you a reminder for next year... posted by mr_silver at 8:39 AM PST - 58 comments
Bianca is a 24-year-old software writer and escort from Toronto, Ontario. She was born in Hamilton, Ontario and lived in Dublin, Ireland for many years. She likes cash, properly compiled HTML and four star or higher hotels. She dislikes claims of latex allergies. [more inside] posted by clearly at 6:11 AM PST - 67 comments
"Snowball Cam has no visible moving parts but [is] able to roll across most terrains, even up hill." A new generation of spycams - very mobile spycams - have been prowling the northern arctic islands of Norway for an upcoming BBC TV program on polar bears. Bilzzard Cam has two electric motors that propel it across the snow - on skis - at speeds up to 40 mph. When threatened by the bears, it releases the onboard decoy device - the Snowball Cam - seen in action here. posted by woodblock100 at 1:43 AM PST - 34 comments
Now that winter is officially here, maybe you're thinking about warmer times, and your vegetable garden. Here are some online tools and resources to help you plan your next bumper crop.
Mother Earth News Garden Planner is an online app that can help you layout your garden, and once you've done that, it'll tell you when you should start planting, based on your location. It even takes into account things like successive sowing and crop rotation, all with an eye towards organic farming practices. (Don't like associating with the Mother Earthers? The same app is available via GrowVeg.com.)
Considering more unusual varieties this year? How about heirloom varieties? Seed Savers Exchange | Victory Seeds | Seeds of Change. And of course, there's always Burpee for your more garden variety seeds.
And be sure to check out these composting tips.
Or if all of this is just too much work, you can always sign up for a share in a nearby CSA. posted by crunchland at 9:29 PM PST - 22 comments
Halfway through the third book of the Hitchhiker's Guide series, there is a throwaway reference to a doomed starship, one whose incredible splendor was matched only by the cosmic absurdity of its maiden-day annihilation.
But the story didn't end there. Unbeknownst to many fans, this small piece of Adamsian lore was the inspiration for an ambitious and richly-detailed side-story: a 1998 computer adventure game called Starship Titanic.
Designed by Douglas Adams himself, the game set players loose in the infamous vessel, challenging them with a maddening mystery laced with the devilish wit of the novels.
The game was laden with extra content, including an in-depth strategy guide, a (mediocre) tie-in novel by Terry Jones, a whimsical First Class In-Flight Magazine, and even a pair of 3D glasses for one of the more inventive puzzles.
Key to solving these puzzles was the game's groundbreaking communications system -- players interacted with the ship's robotic crew through a natural language parsing engine called SpookiTalk, whose 10,000+ lines of conversational dialogue spawned 16 hours of audio recorded by professional voice actors, including John Cleese, Terry Jones, and even Douglas Adams himself in severalcameos (spoiler cameo). Want to experience the voyage for yourself? Then watch this narrated video playthrough (intro (ads) - 123456789?10111213) ...or click inside for a information on how to run the game for free on Windows, Mac, and Linux (along with a bunch of other goodies!). [more inside] posted by Rhaomi at 7:28 PM PST - 109 comments
Do you like the wholesale destruction of everything you cherish? Do you like roguelikes? Then you're in luck because two new roguelikes are yours to play, the zombie-apocalypse city survival fest Rogue Survivor, and the Gamma Worldesque ASCII-Fallout-analogue Caves of Qud. Both are still in beta, both will keep you away from the dinner table over the holidays. posted by Kattullus at 6:24 PM PST - 23 comments
The credibility of Skeptoid podcast creator, Brian Dunning, has come under fire from the Science Blog / Skeptic community after he posted a questionable podcast regarding DDT. A comprehensive fact check in twoparts hit the web soon thereafter, followed by othercritiques - suggesting that Dunning's objectivity may be tainted by conservative / libertarian political leanings. [more inside] posted by jnnla at 5:55 PM PST - 37 comments
The Wikileaks Cablegate scandal is the most exciting and interesting hacker scandal ever. I rather commonly write about such things, and I’m surrounded by online acquaintances who take a burning interest in every little jot and tittle of this ongoing saga. So it’s going to take me a while to explain why this highly newsworthy event fills me with such a chilly, deadening sense of Edgar Allen Poe melancholia.
And just think: When your shitty kid marries someone you violently disapprove of 20 years from now, this song -- with its references to blowjobs and songs that were ground into the ground before the kid was a twinkle in your eye -- will serve as the couple's first dance. As you watch your offspring and new in-law twirl around the dance floor, you will reach for a glass of Champagne Loko (President Kid Rock won't try to ban the stuff until he's up for re-election in 2032) and wonder how everything went so, so wrong.
In 1974, a Cleveland Browns season ticket holder was frustrated with a new fad of throwing paper airplanes in the stadium, and wrote to the Browns to let them know. The Brown's response likely failed to alleviate his concerns. posted by CharlieSue at 11:29 AM PST - 55 comments
This year's top holiday duet doesn't feature Mariah Carey or Will Ferrell. It's Rodney the Mailman [local news] and Andrew WK [original], live from the Chicago offices of the Onion AV Club in their Holiday Undercover project.
In typical Andrew WK style, a slightly... different version is also available.
But this is not Rodney's first appearance -- nor are these covers few and far between. [more inside] posted by Madamina at 11:05 AM PST - 3 comments
Missoula District Court: Jury pool in marijuana case stages ‘mutiny’. 'A funny thing happened on the way to a trial in Missoula County District Court last week.
Jurors – well, potential jurors – staged a revolt.
They took the law into their own hands, as it were, and made it clear they weren’t about to convict anybody for having a couple of buds of marijuana. Never mind that the defendant in question also faced a felony charge of criminal distribution of dangerous drugs.
The tiny amount of marijuana police found while searching Touray Cornell’s home on April 23 became a huge issue for some members of the jury panel.
No, they said, one after the other. No way would they convict somebody for having a 16th of an ounce.' posted by VikingSword at 10:21 AM PST - 48 comments
This clip of the baby preacher has been floating around the internet for a while. If you've never seen it before, it's memorable - this toddler, too young to be able to talk, is imitating a preacher in front of a church congregation. [more inside] posted by rodmandirect at 7:25 AM PST - 60 comments
Getting to advanced reading level content. As pioneered by Adrien Chen of Gawker, by far the most interesting application of the tool is its ability to rate the overall level of material on any given site, simply by dropping site: [domain.com] into the search box. posted by Muirwylde at 9:15 PM PST - 52 comments
Vanishing Act. Paul Collins tells the story of Barbara Newhall Follett. The daughter of authors Wilson Follett and Helen Follett, Barbara began writing at the age of 4. As she grew older, she developed a private language of her own, evolved from her view of the world of nature. Her first book, The House Without Windows, was published when she was twelve. In December 1939 Barbara walked out of her apartment and was never seen again. "Some prodigies flourish, some disappear. But Barbara did leave one last comment to the world about writing—a brief piece in a 1933 issue of Horn Book that earnestly recommends that parents give their own children typewriters. 'Perhaps there would simply be a terrific wholesale destruction of typewriters,' she admits. 'An effort would have to be made to impress upon children that a typewriter is magic.'" The entirety of her known writings now resides in six boxes at the Columbia University Rare Book & Manuscript Library. (via longreads) posted by ocherdraco at 7:37 PM PST - 33 comments
1884: Yesterday's Future. A story of outstanding heroism in the face of deception, subterfuge and treachery. Conjuring up the belief that it was made forty years before film was even invented, 1884: Yesterdays Future tells of a future that might have been but never was. Directed by Tim Ollive, the film is a mix of animation, puppetry and two dimensional and three dimensional computer generated imagery (CGI) set against backgrounds created using stunning artwork, model sets and period photographs from the Hulton Picture Library division of Getty Images. [more inside] posted by Fizz at 12:46 PM PST - 5 comments
30 Years of BAD National Geographic Pictures - Some of the highlights of Bruce Dale's 30 year career at National Geographic including 10 trips to China beginning in the late 1970's, the hologram cover for the 100th anniversary edition, and mounting a camera on the tail of a jumbo jet for in-flight photographs. posted by roaring beast at 11:46 AM PST - 26 comments
Sherman's March and America is a digital representation of historian Anne Sarah Rubin's project on how Americans have remembered General William Tecumseh Sherman's March to the Sea in 1864. The funnest part are the interactive maps. Clicking on the yellow-highlighted pins opens up a video exploring the significance of that spot on the map. Each map represents a different genre of memories of the march (civilian, soldiers, fiction, etc). My favorite is the narrative of the events in Milledgeville, Georgia on the Soldiers Map, featuring plastic toy soldiers and burning cardboard buildings. posted by marxchivist at 10:34 AM PST - 16 comments
Idris Elba was cast to portray Heimdall in the upcoming Thor movie. This has got the Council of Conservative Citizens (an American white nationalist group) all in a tizzy, since traditionally the Norse gods were all white, since Norsemen were, well... just about all white. Gabe raises the point - can a racist clock be right twice a day? via posted by FatherDagon at 7:27 AM PST - 307 comments
"I can sense stars, and their whispers amid the roaring of our own Sun." So goes one poetic status of the Voyager 2 twitterfeed, which appeals to my sense of wonder like nothing else on the internet. Interstellar space probes and microblogging go hand in hand in the 21st Century. posted by Kattullus at 5:21 AM PST - 23 comments
Legendary hip hop producer DJ Premier interviewed in the XXL Icon Interview and The Smoking Section. Remarkably candid conversations about his life in East Coast hip hop, with interesting stories about his work with Jay-Z, Biggie, Puff, Nas, Jeru the Damaga, Group Home, Suge Knight, Christina Aguilera and of course, Guru. On finding records to sample: "Well, there’s still diggin’ spots. If you’re in that world like I am, you know the spots, you see everybody—Just Blaze, Alchemist, Large Professor, Pete Rock—we still pop up in those spots. You got Big City records, you got Turntable Lab, you still have A1, you got Academy, you know. I’m not gonna tell you all the digging spots." posted by the mad poster! at 5:56 PM PST - 11 comments
"We gathered our favorite cutting-edge content creators from across the internet and gave each of them a deceptively simple mission -- tell a short story in an innovative way." Showtime presents: Short Stories.[more inside] posted by zarq at 1:38 PM PST - 4 comments
So what does the question "Why don't you believe in God?" really mean. I think when someone asks that they are really questioning their own belief. In a way they are asking "what makes you so special? How come you weren't brainwashed with the rest of us?"
... the United States is assembling a vast domestic intelligence apparatus to collect information about Americans, using the FBI, local police, state homeland security offices and military criminal investigators. The system, by far the largest and most technologically sophisticated in the nation's history, collects, stores and analyzes information about thousands of U.S. citizens and residents, many of whom have not been accused of any wrongdoing. (previously) posted by Joe Beese at 6:26 AM PST - 79 comments
The British Government wants to ban porn from the internet. The move would force ISPs to block all pornographic content unless users had 'opted in' (providing a handy list of people who wish to view pornography) and is said to be motivated by a desire to combat the early sexualization of children. There is no word on how 'porn' is to be defined. posted by unSane at 4:01 AM PST - 136 comments
This evening in Charleston, SC, a Secession Ball! When they don their "period formal" hoop skirts tonight some ladies may rue the fact that have no slaves to pull their corsets tight. The ladies and their escorts, many of whom are members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans who would like us to believe that the Civil War was not about slavery. The NAACP, and others disagree. The NAACP has organized a peaceful protest. posted by mareli at 3:44 AM PST - 116 comments
Right Wing astroturfing A non-scientific analysis of the patterns in forum board discussions on a variety of topics. The gist: discussions of issues in which there's money at stake (like climate change, public health and corporate tax avoidance) are often characterised by amazing levels of abuse and disruption by rightwing libertarians who are pro-corporate, anti-tax, anti-regulation. Discussions of issues in which there's little money at stake tend to be a lot more civilised than debates about issues where companies stand to lose or gain billions. posted by novenator at 12:14 AM PST - 79 comments
Two years ago, Deepwater Wind proposed a wind farm off the shore of Block Island, Rhode Island which would have been the country's first offshore wind farm. Ever since, one legal battle after another has brought the project all the way to the Rhode Island Supreme Court. [more inside] posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 9:06 PM PST - 26 comments
A 3 hour podcast interview (part 2 here) with British comics legend Pat Mills, most famous for the anti-war WW1 strip Charley's War, the creation 2000ad and many of the most enduring characters within it, superhero hunter Marshall Law and numerous other comics. His work usually combines combines dark humour, a dash of left wing politics and ludicrous amounts of violence, now as much as ever with puritan zombie hunter Defoe. Subjects discussed in the intreview include the death of artist John Hicklenton, being Irish-English, Sláine and the comparitive lack of celtic heroes in modern popular culture, Oliver Cromwell and the Levellers. Bonus link: 20 pages of Metalzoic, Pat Mills and Kevin O'Neills "lost" story. posted by Artw at 9:00 PM PST - 18 comments
"At the time, in the field that we flopped into, the artists wrote and performed all of their own material,” Felice recalled. “Then, after a while, the road got to them. They couldn’t think, they couldn’t doodle around on the front porch with a guitar, they couldn’t stroll through the woods and get inspired. So Boudleaux and I were the first people who came to Nashville who didn’t do anything but write. We were the factory."
What do the songs Love Hurts, Rocky Top, Bye Bye Love, and Wake Up Little Susie have in common? Why, they were all written by Felice and Boudleaux Bryant, of course! Perhaps best known for the hits they penned for the Everly Brothers, The Bryants were an American husband and wife songwriting duo whose compositions, mostly country music, are estimated to have been on hundreds of millions of records sold. Let's get to know them a bit better, shall we? [more inside] posted by ORthey at 8:09 PM PST - 13 comments
1. Perceptions of Misleading and False Information An overwhelming majority of voters said that they encountered misleading or false information in the last election, with a majority saying that this occurred frequently and occurred more frequently than usual.
2. Evidence of Misinformation Among Voters The poll found strong evidence that voters were substantially misinformed on many of the issues prominent in the election campaign, including the stimulus legislation, the healthcare reform law, TARP, the state of the economy, climate change, campaign contributions by the US Chamber of Commerce and President Obama’s birthplace. In particular, voters had perceptions about the expert opinion of economists and other scientists that were quite different from actual expert opinion.
[more inside] posted by caddis at 1:54 PM PST - 53 comments
The Great Typekit Table — Finding a good Typekit font for long blocks of text is hard, but Sleepover has done it so you don't have to. They've pared it down according to two simple rules: first, the font has to have lowercase, uppercase, bold, italic, and bold italic; second, the font can't be handwriting, script, or monospace. posted by netbros at 7:00 AM PST - 37 comments
Streets of Fire (part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10) is a 1984 film directed by Walter Hill and co-written by Hill and Larry Gross. It was described in previews, trailers, and posters as "A Rock & Roll Fable." It is an unusual mix of musical, action, drama, and comedy with elements both of retro-1950s and 1980s. ... The film was promoted as a summer blockbuster but failed critically and commercially, grossing only USD $8 million in North America, well below its $14.5 million budget. Its dynamic musical score by the likes of Jim Steinman, Ry Cooder, and others, as well as the hit Dan Hartman song "I Can Dream About You", however, has helped it attain something of a cult following among fans. posted by Joe Beese at 9:27 PM PST - 59 comments
My brother often informs me that I live 'the life of Riley'. The other night while re-reading Bill Bryson's Made in America I noted he mentioned the origin of the phrase was a popular 1880s song (possibly 1883) Is That Mr. Reilly? by Pat Rooney, in which "the hero speculates on what he would do with a fortune", and revived for use during WWI. Curious, I found several possible origins, though the song remains the top contender. Dictionary.com defines life of Riley as "a carefree, comfortable, and thoroughly enjoyable way of living. The term became popular and eventually 'The Life of Riley' was used as the title of an American radio sitcom (Wiki), followed by a movie and television series. It was used again with the alternate spelling 'The Life of Reilly' in 1995 as the title of a short film from Ireland, and in a 2006 movie starring Charles Nelson Reilly. In 2009 'The Life of Riley' was the name of a British television comedy. Now that's a phrase with staying power. It's the name of an Irish band, an online store in the UK, it was used by a
sign maker, and quite obviously, as the moniker of several drinking establishments, such as the Life of Riley Tavern in Portland, Oregon; The Life of Reilly - Irish Pub & Restaurant in Baltimore, in the United Kingdom as the 'Life Of Riley' in Glasgow, Lanarkshire; and 'Life of Reilly Pub' in Harrow, Middlesex; and with a strange possessive at the 'Life of Reilly's Pub and Grill' in Long Beach, New York. Let's also not forget the mysterious MeFite LifeofRiley, whose stats stand entirely at zero. My main reason for writing all this is to ask: how many Mefites use this term? I do, but unfortunately my brother is wrong: I don't live the life of Riley. I might one day, if I win the lottery . . . posted by bwg at 5:00 PM PST - 29 comments
This post is a) NSFW or grandmothers, b) Derivative of previous stuff on Metafilter. Having said that, here goes: Canada is a Spanish production company. They do ads, fashion and the best videos I've seen in a very long time. You'd do well to start here. [more inside] posted by Cobalt at 2:09 PM PST - 28 comments
In the 1920's, there was a series of race cars developed by Count Louis Zborowski, Chitty Bang Bang I through IV. Though in the film version of Ian Fleming's book the name came from the sound the cars made, there is some conjecture that the name is based on a bawdy WWI song. Zborowski died before finishing Chitty Bang Bang 4, (also known as the Higham Special). The car killed its next owner in a particularly grisly fashion and was buried on the spot by his horrified friends. [more inside] posted by 445supermag at 11:10 AM PST - 19 comments
"What do we see when we look straight at the sun and then close our eyes? That's right, a bright moving disk that lasts several seconds. Every child knows this afterimage effect. We use the afterimage effect for a completely new brand experience, for the first advertising commercial that doesn't use a directly visible logo, but by doing so generates a more intensive connection to the target group. We developed a cinema ad for BMW motorcycles that turns spectators into astonished fans. It does this by using an afterimage of the brand to literally get inside people's heads." posted by grouse at 8:41 AM PST - 55 comments
I Love You is an animated short by Rinat Timerkaev that is reminiscent in style of the works of anime director Makoto Shinkai. Russian audio, no subtitles. [more inside] posted by dmit at 7:04 PM PST - 14 comments
Burial & Flight I BEGAN THIS SERIES TEN YEARS AGO in rural Kenya. When I started photographing, I thought I was working on a localized story about how HIV was destroying African society. Over the years, as I broadened my travels to China and Mexico, I began to see similarities in the composition of villages wherever I went. Only later did I fully realize that the quiet moments I documented in the African bush, Mexican plains, and majestic Chinese mountains represented small pieces of a great shift. posted by metagnathous at 6:11 PM PST - 5 comments
The House of Sharing is a place for the Halmoni to to live together and heal the wounds of the past while educating the future generations of the suffering they survived.
The View From Over Here details her visit to the House of Sharing, a therapeutic group home and museum for surviving "comfort women", who were systematically raped by the Japanese military during World War II. The museum displays art for and by the survivors. Via Ask a Korean. [more inside] posted by ignignokt at 4:34 PM PST - 5 comments
Even one of the greatest lines ever spoken in a movie can become hopelessly clichéd when repeated enough times, right, Toto? (SingleYouTubeContaining58Clips) [more inside] posted by oneswellfoop at 1:47 PM PST - 30 comments
Friday Frivolity: A highlight reel of clips from the BBC show Walk on the Wild Side, featuring voiceovers for animals so you finally get to know what's really going on in all those nature documentaries. This BBC playlist has previews for a lot of the individual episodes. (I got region-blocked on a few of those videos, but most seem to work fine.) [more inside] posted by kmz at 9:18 AM PST - 13 comments
Early in 1903, the success of the New York production of the musical adaptation of L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz got composer Victor Herbert and librettist Glen MacDonough thinking. They thought that it might be possible to duplicate that success by applying a Christmas theme to Baum's story and then sprinkling in a few Mother Goose characters. Later that year the resulting show, Babes in Toyland, was a rousing success. Thirty years later it was made into a movie starring two of the greatest motion picture actors of the era, Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy, produced by Hal Roach. But this post isn't about either of those productions; it's about the worst production. [more inside] posted by Toekneesan at 7:17 AM PST - 22 comments
Biome Terrain Mod is a modification for Minecraft that allows tweaking the world generation parameters for the regions in the game. The Minecraft Forums are running a contest to find cool generation settings. Some of the results are quite striking.... [more inside] posted by JHarris at 3:54 AM PST - 94 comments
Since approximately 26% of Canadian children age 2-17 are now considered obese, few would disagree that drastic measures are warranted. A dude and his wife have decided that the best way to inspire kids to get some exercise outdoors is to run daily marathons across the country. [more inside] posted by sarastro at 1:01 AM PST - 41 comments
Beyond the Real Life is a World of Warcraft fan movie, blending live action and special effects with in-game footage. The follow-up to a 2006 short called The Edge of Real Life, Beyond the Real Life tells the story of Tank the warrior and Bubbleballs the paladin on a quest to save Tank's love interest after she is kidnapped by a Horde mage. The acting and writing aren't in danger of winning any awards, but the mix of machinima and live action is very well done, and there are some pretty good gags in there, both WoW-related and otherwise. (via RPS) posted by The Pusher Robot at 11:45 PM PST - 5 comments
“There are two ways of constructing a software design. One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies. And the other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious deficiencies.” - C.A.R. Hoare, from the Top 50 Programming Quotes of All Time. posted by Slap*Happy at 2:09 PM PST - 39 comments
If you've ever watched the movie "The Battle of Britain", you surely must remember Squadron Leader Evans, a man with a horribly burned face. That role was played by William Foxley, his only appearance in film, and that was really what he looked like. In 1944,. Bill Foxley was navigator in a Wellington bomber which crashed shortly after takeoff. He got out of the wreck safely, but he heard a crewmate screaming inside and went back in and dragged the poor fellow out. In doing so he was horrifically burned, destroying his face and badly ruining both his hands. He lost one eye and the cornea of the other was badly scarred, leaving him nearly blind. As a member of the "Guinea Pig Club" he underwent almost 30 surgeries over three years to fix his hands and rebuild something like a face, which is what you saw in the movie. Bill Foxley got on with his life, and this week he died at age 87. posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:11 PM PST - 21 comments
'Phone-Wielding Shoppers Strike Fear Into Retailers.' 'A revolution in retailing—what Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Chief Executive Mike Duke has dubbed a "new era of price transparency"—and its arrival is threatening to upend the business models of the biggest store chains in America. Until recently, retailers could reasonably assume that if they just lured shoppers to stores with enticing specials, the customers could be coaxed into buying more profitable stuff, too. Now, marketers must contend with shoppers who can use their smartphones inside stores to check whether the specials are really so special, and if the rest of the merchandise is reasonably priced."The retailer's advantage has been eroded," says Greg Girard of consultancy IDC Retail Insights, which recently found that roughly 45% of customers with smartphones had used them to perform due diligence on a store's prices. "The four walls of the store have become porous."' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 12:37 PM PST - 108 comments
"Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty broadcasts information to Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and the Middle East in twenty-eight languages. Much of the information comes from the places where those twenty-eight languages are spoken.... Reporters are also working, sometimes clandestinely, in countries where RFE/RL bureaus aren’t allowed. The mission is to tell people living in those countries what is happening to them." -- Facts Meet Freedom: On the Air in Afghanistan, by P. J. O'Rourke posted by valkane at 10:28 AM PST - 12 comments
KenRexMcElroy for years had terrorized the small town of Skidmore Missouri, and was considered the town bully. He had been charged with more than 20 felonies, robbing, raping, burning, shootings. He intimidated people by driving by at night and firing a shotgun blast, putting a rattlesnake in their mailbox, etc. He was murdered on July 10, 1981. No one in town would identify Ken Rex's killer and no one has ever been charged with his killing, though there has been intensespeculation about who did it. There have been various dramaticdepictions of the crime. Is vigilante justice ever justified? posted by Xurando at 9:53 AM PST - 148 comments
PhDChallenge.org proposed a challenge: To have the phrase "I smoke crack rocks" included in a peer reviewed academic paper. The winner is Gabriel Parent from Carnegie Mellon, who included it in his paper [PDF]. posted by reenum at 9:08 AM PST - 54 comments
Forming (NSFW - cartoon nudity) is a webcomic by Jesse Moynihan (NSFW) that tells the history of the evolution of man via the machinations of various alien entities whose familiar names (and unfamiliar stories) have been recorded in various religions throughout time. [more inside] posted by lyam at 7:49 AM PST - 24 comments
Defenestration: we've seen posts mentioning it in the Blue, but not one dedicated to the idea in full. Even Mefi's own defenestration hasn't done a proper post on it (but please, Sir, no need to throw yourself out the window over it). The first thing to note is just how awesome the word defenestrate is, from the Latin de- (out of) + fenestra (window), which came to fame via Prague (live reenactment in July 2009; plus a nifty Lego version) and in this movie clip (actual defenestrations begin at 6.39), but history is filled with notable defenestrations (Wiki), such as the one in 1993 where "Toronto lawyer Garry Hoy fell to his death after attempting to demonstrate the strength of his office tower's windows", and of course someone has cobbled together a Top 10 List (and let's not forget the opening credits of SCTV or the fate of one John Locke). We don't hear much of it these days (although in October 2010 the news reported a story of mass self-defenestration owing to Satanism, a tale that that later was, er… thrown out the window), but defenestration has become an art landmark in San Francisco, and naturally it is classic Hollywood staple (Ten Memorable Movie Defenestrations). It has even been used at xkcd. While I have at times defenestrated objects, I am pleased to say I have never been defenestrated myself. And lastly, you have to appreciate the clever geek pun of defenestrating your computer, which doesn't mean tossing it out the window, but instead replacing Windows with an alternative OS such as Linux. posted by bwg at 7:03 AM PST - 52 comments
His radio station was shut down. His medical license was revoked. So he ran for Governor. (Time, 1932), and almost won. Twice. "Dr". John R. Brinkley, the goat gland doctor, (previously on Metafilter) had six weeks. He also had a plane, a huckster's skills, a staff skilled in promotion, and lots of chutzpah. [more inside] posted by julen at 6:43 AM PST - 10 comments
Two brothers pull off the heist of the century when they steal money from a criminal kingpin. The kingpin retaliates by abducting one brother's girlfriend. Now the brothers and their two close allies must team up and rescue her, deal out some pain, and get away with their lives. You may think this sounds vaguely familiar, but you've never seen Nintendo's classic Super Mario Bros. depicted like this. Presenting The Brothers Mario [SLYT; contains strong language and scenes of violence; rated M-for-Mature]. posted by Servo5678 at 6:33 AM PST - 35 comments
*Santa* is a Concept, not an idea. It's an Emotion, not a feeling. It's both Yesterday and Today. And it's Tomorrow as well. Santa winds infinite Possibilities around finite Limitations to evoke the essence of invention and the Odour of Nostalgia. It has the complexity of Simpleness and the Simplicity of complexitiveness. It begins with the Hiss of Power and ends with the Ah of Surprise. *Santa* is. posted by creeky at 1:51 AM PST - 18 comments
Please enjoy a bit of the (somewhat negative) oeuvre of The Misfits, chief rivals of Jem & The Holograms. Were their songs truly better? You be the judge. [more inside] posted by mintcake! at 11:53 PM PST - 30 comments
A lawfirm perusing the New York Times archives has examined how physician W. J. Mayo, famed industrialist Henry Ford, anatomist and anthropologist Arthur Keith, physicist and Nobel laureate Arthur Compton, chemist Willis R. Whitney, physicist and Nobel laureate Robert Millikan, physicist and chemist Michael Pupin, and sociologist William F. Ogburn foresaw the year 2011 from the year 1931, with commentary. [more inside] posted by 1f2frfbf at 8:46 PM PST - 13 comments
Election night, Kenya, 2007. The votes roll in, and at some time around 11pm, as victory seemed imminent for the opposition candidate, all televisions in the country went black. When broadcasts resumed in the morning, the incumbent had materialized enough votes to soundly win the election. In the aftermath, a wave of violence broke out in which some 1,300 people were killed. In opposition to a domestic investigation of the violence, Kenyan MP's chanted 'Don't be vague; go to the Hague!' Now, three years later, some officials are a bit less enthusiastic. A series of articles on the ICC investigation of political violence in Kenya: IIIIIIIV[more inside] posted by kaibutsu at 6:27 PM PST - 5 comments
Armor Games has just released another entry into the launch genre (Penguin Sports, Hedgehog Launch, IntoSpace, etc.) called, simply enough, Flight. The game is wrapped around a storyline told with cutscenes, starting with a girl who wants her mother home for Christmas. Folding the letter into a paper airplane, she launches it out the window, where it travels around the world, with others adding their wishes to it. As with other launch variants, boosters keep you aloft, and you can purchase upgrades adding to - and replacing - your plane. [more inside] posted by Old'n'Busted at 4:58 PM PST - 28 comments
Full Utah Phillips concert from 2007: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. If you don't know who Utah Phillips is, be prepared to meet one of the great performers of our age, telling funny stories and cracking jokes, singing great songs, and generally being a world treasure. If you want to know more about this great singer, songwriter, and peace and labor activist, you can watch an hour long documentary on him from Democracy Now that was made after he passed away in 2008. [previously] posted by Kattullus at 4:45 PM PST - 26 comments
Papal gymnastics. Just your typical day at the Vatican. Topless muscle-bound gymnasts perform for the Pope, appreciative cardinals and waving nuns. Make your own jokes. posted by illy at 4:42 PM PST - 45 comments
The Speakularity is coming. So says (MeFi's own) Matt Thompson of NPR, posting at NiemanLab as part of its series, Predictions for Journalism 2011.Constant social feedback plus machine learning could improve automatic speech transcription to the point where it’s finally ready for prime time. And when it does, the default expectation for recorded speech will be that it’s searchable and readable, nearly in the instant. I know this sounds totally retrograde, but I think it’s something like the future. posted by beagle at 10:51 AM PST - 21 comments
The railgun is a long-range, high-energy gun launch system that uses electricity rather than gunpowder or rocket motors to launch projectiles capable of striking a target at a range of more than 200 nautical miles with Mach 7 velocity. [more inside] posted by three blind mice at 7:00 AM PST - 125 comments
Do you use Boy Words or Girl Words?My point is that kids get it. That this world is changing and that kids GET it. There are kids being raised to simply ask about gender if they are uncertain. Have you ever heard a person refrain from using a pronoun for an entire conversation instead of asking? It’s one of the most awkward things ever. Kids aren’t OK with that nonsense. They just ask.Via. posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 6:45 AM PST - 188 comments
Theo de Raadt: I have received a mail regarding the early development of the OpenBSD IPSEC stack. It is alleged that some ex-developers (and the company they worked for) accepted US government money to put backdoors into our network stack, in particular the IPSEC stack.[more inside] posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 5:48 PM PST - 94 comments
He is one of a handful of U.S. and European scientists searching for universalpatterns hidden in human conflicts — patterns that might one day allow them to predict long-term threats. Rather than study historical grievances, violent ideologies and social networks the way most counterterrorism researchers do, Aaron Clauset and his colleagues disregard the unique traits of terrorist groups and focus entirely on outcomes — the violence they commit.
Call it the physics of terrorism. posted by chavenet at 2:59 PM PST - 19 comments
From June until August they hid out in their camp in the scrub oak up in the foothills, avoiding the search parties. Then they began coming down into the city by day, passing within a quarter-mile of Elizabeth's home. They walked the streets dressed as religious pilgrims from the New Testament. Mitchell had a long beard and a walking stick. Elizabeth and Wanda covered everything but their eyes. And no one figured it out. This American Life contributor Scott Carrier profiles the Messianic cult of Brian David Mitchell, the abductor of 2002 media icon Elizabeth Smart. posted by l33tpolicywonk at 1:47 PM PST - 60 comments
Restrepo is a feature-length documentary that chronicles the deployment of a platoon of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan's Korengal Valley. The movie focuses on a remote 15-man outpost, "Restrepo," named after a platoon medic who was killed in action. It was considered one of the most dangerous postings in the U.S. military. This is an entirely experiential film: the cameras never leave the valley; there are no interviews with generals or diplomats. The only goal is to make viewers feel as if they have just been through a 90-minute deployment. This is war, full stop. The conclusions are up to you. (previously) [more inside] posted by Joe Beese at 12:04 PM PST - 41 comments
'What's a home worth?' 'There are problems in appraisal land that transcend weak housing markets and debt-ridden borrowers, and that are causing home buyers and would-be refinancers to miss out on low rates and dream houses. "There's been a pendulum swing in appraisals comparable to the one we've seen in mortgage credit, from foolishly lax to overly restrictive," said Walt Molony of the National Association of Realtors. He reported that as recently as October, one in 10 member agents said they'd had a contract canceled as a result of a low appraisal, 13 percent said they'd had a contract delayed, and 16 percent said they'd had a contract negotiated to a lower sales price as a result of a low appraisal.'' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 10:36 AM PST - 90 comments
The Christian left is a term originating in the United States, used to describe a spectrum of left-wing Christian political and social movements which largely embraces social justice. "We will not be profiled or pigeonholed and we will not ‘Be Quiet.’ We’re Christians. We’re Liberals. Please get used to it. Thank you." posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 5:54 AM PST - 145 comments
Serge Daney (1944 - 1992) is often cited as one of the greatest film critics. After joining the legendary film magazine Cahiers du cinéma (which he would eventually edit) at age 20, Daney wrote extensively on the changing place of movies in culture, on directors new and old and on television, war and even sports. He founded the film magazine Trafic before dying of AIDS in 1992.
How do you tax religious communists engaged in capitalism through an exempt religious corporation? The Stahl Hutterian Brethren is a 65-member community of Hutterites that runs a 30,000 acre farm in Washington. The community is incorporated as a religious corporation. Its members give all their "time, labor, services, earnings, and energies" to the community. They disavow individual property ownership, draw no salary, and do not contribute to or collect Social Security benefits. Instead, the community provides for its members' personal needs. And now it is the subject of the most fascinating 9th Circuit tax case [PDF] you'll read this year!
But before you dig into the 9th Circuit opinion, here's a great summary and commentary by law professor Shaun Martin. The case addresses the very tricky question of whether, as employees of a non-profit religious corporation, the community members should be allowed to deduct their living expenses, which are paid for by the corporation (they're communists, after all). Tricky additional fact: The 65-member community is all one big family. posted by The World Famous at 2:00 PM PST - 36 comments
There are generally two approaches to thinking about games: narratology and ludology. The first emphasizes story, the second play. The next time I played Super Mario, on the Wii (you can order all the vintage games), I found myself in a narratological mode. Mario reminded me of K. and his pursuit of the barmaid Frieda, in Kafka’s “The Castle,” and of the kind of lost-loved-one dreams that “The Castle” both mimics and instigates.
Zombie Baby, Fucking Jane Austen, The Last Witch Hunter, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, American Bullshit, Better Living Through Chemistry... just some of the titles that made this year's Black List, a list of the best unproduced screenplays of the year as voted on by industry insiders. LA Times and Deadline Hollywood have pieces on it and here's an October audio interview with Franklin Leonard, creator of the Black List. In past years, aspiring screenwriters could find PDFs of the scripts online. It's gonna be a lot harder now. posted by dobbs at 11:50 AM PST - 42 comments
Approximately 40 books dealing with LGBT issues were vandalized with what appeared to be urine in Lamont Library on the Harvard campus on November 24, according to a report filed Friday by the library security staff to the Harvard University Police Department. Something similar (minus the peepee) happen in San Francisco, where they took the books and made Art! posted by Blake at 11:13 AM PST - 69 comments
Geeky Bibliopegy. Custom hand-bound journals and albums, featuring Buffy, Firefly, Doctor Who, etc. Check the blog for additional details on many of the volumes. posted by kmz at 9:08 AM PST - 5 comments
Audio slideshow: Photography of Sir Wilfred Thesiger
Sir Wilfred Thesiger took nearly 40,000 photographs during his eight decades of travels throughout Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. Now, to mark 100 years since his birth, Oxford's Pitt Rivers Museum is displaying some of his most striking images. posted by Lezzles at 3:53 AM PST - 9 comments
Japan Air Raids "is an ongoing project to build a digital archive dedicated to the international dissemination of information about the World War II air raids against Japan." They have seeded it with quite a bit of material (e.g. Target Tokyo, narrated by Ronald Reagan in the documentary and propaganda section) and promise there is much more to come. [Warning, some images may disturb] [via] posted by unliteral at 9:13 PM PST - 21 comments
Two hours just to sort through the error messages. What happened to that Airbus A380 (Qantas flight QF32) whose engine caught fire in mid-air between Singapore and Sydney in November 2010? One of the five crewmembers on the flight deck recounts the story, which centres on airplane computer systems as much as on keeping tons of metal in the air. [more inside] posted by joeclark at 11:23 AM PST - 40 comments
On a rainy August morning in 2007, the news rippled through New Jersey’s law enforcement ranks, officer to officer, department to department. Joseph Colao was dead. Today, it’s clear Colao was more than just a doctor, friend or confidant to many of the officers. He was their supplier. The first in a three-part Star-Ledger series on the secret world of steroid use by law enforcement officers and firefighters. posted by valkane at 8:50 AM PST - 76 comments
Sahel Sounds is the blog of ethnomusicologist Christopher Kirkley, a.k.a. MeFi's own iamck. It's about the contemporary music of the Sahel, which is the Southern border of the Sahara, focusing on West Africa. It has long been a region of great musical ferment. The most famous musicians today are Tinariwen (previously), but there's a great deal more out there. Kirkley travels around trading music, Western songs in exchange for Saharan, which he mostly receives off cellphone memory cards. Kirkley has made three compilations, Sahelsounds, the Promo CD and Music from Saharan Cellphones volumes 1 and 2 (the numbers link to downloads). Kirkley has also collected and recorded videos. The Guardian interviewed Kirkley on the subject of cellphones' effect on Saharan music, which he has written about. Mark Richardson of Pitchfork was prompted by one of Kirkley's collections to write about musical scarcity in today's infoglut society. Besides the collections, there are a lot of other songs on the blog, the entire archive is wonderful and worth reading through. posted by Kattullus at 6:04 AM PST - 12 comments
Nigel Kneale's adaptation of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty Four was one of the most controversial television programmes of its time. Broadcast live, it made "unusually extensive and imaginative use of filmed inserts (14 in total). These sequences bought time for the more elaborate costume changes or scene set-ups, but also served to 'open out' the action." And now you can watch it too! The full version is currently on Youtube. Short of the John Hurt film released in 1984 being posted online, the 1954 BBC TV adaptation is about as doubleplusgood as it gets for now. [more inside] posted by Effigy2000 at 4:00 AM PST - 12 comments
The Who in 1965. They are featured in a French documentary on the Mods. You can skip ahead to the Who live songs if you are not in the mood to watch the whole documentary.
From Google Translate: "Discover the new English youth in the district of Hammersmith, London suburbs and particularly the movement "mods" or "Modern", new dandies, mavericks ouvrier.Les interviews from rural youth about drugs, Police headquarters, politics, racism, society in general, alternate with concert footage of WHO on a small stage in London. Interview in French Kit Lambert, manager of the WHO, about Teddy Boys movement, rockers, mods." posted by zzazazz at 10:09 AM PST - 9 comments
A car dealership in CA has a brand new 1987 Buick GNX on the showroom floor. It's been there since 1987. GM only produced 587 of this model, and it is believed that this vehicle is the only new one left on the planet. The GNX was a hot rod; turbocharged, high horsepower, and could match any production vehicle available in the US, going 0 to 60 in under 5 seconds. The $29,389 stick price from 1987 equates to $54,771 today. Sorry Buick enthusiasts, the dealership says the car is not for sale. posted by COD at 7:43 AM PST - 85 comments
After a 25,000 vote campaign on facebook, Brian Blessed is now available as a downloadable voice for TomTom GPS devices. Fortunately, the resounding actor's excited acceptance speech only shattered windows for three city blocks. posted by BZArcher at 5:39 AM PST - 76 comments
What does your cat do when you're not around? RePURRters: The Movie. (Camera Operators: Charlene Butterbean, Fudge, Gizmo, Jett, Milo, Moca, Mousse, Nutkins, and Penelope) posted by dersins at 6:51 PM PST - 47 comments
Blues Houseparty is a fun, entertaining and highly recommended 57 minute documentary that takes us into a Virginia houseparty of 1989, where the assembled Piedmont blues and gospel musicians and their friends pick guitars, sing, dance and engagingly reminisce on the houseparties of old. Amidst hearty laughs, barbecue and general good times, the guests recount personal memories of fun and rowdiness, corn liquor, 500-pound hogs, the devil's music and the Lord's music. There's a whole lot of cultural history on display here, a slice of black American life that is all but gone now. The mood is infectious, to say the least, and the music just keeps getting better and better throughout the film. The next best thing to being there! posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:26 PM PST - 13 comments
OR if you just want some single-panel pop-culture in a distinctive style, say Hello With Cheese. Now you can't tell me webcomics are totally boring for at least two weeks. posted by oneswellfoop at 3:28 PM PST - 9 comments
"Sometimes I can almost visualize parts of myself, the ones I’m most proud of, atrophying. I wish I had an app to monitor it! I notice that my thoughts are homeopathic, that they mirror content I wish I weren’t reading." Sad as Hell: n+1 on the internet's effect on the self and the book Super Sad True Love Story (which has an damn good book trailer). The novel is set in a dystopian future where constant access to the internet results in a world “dense with panic and media.” [more inside] posted by The Devil Tesla at 2:45 PM PST - 7 comments
Ballerina Project — Nine years ago, young photographer Dane Shitagi walked up New York City’s Broadway towards the highly patronized and well known STEPS dance studios in search of a ballet dancer who could help him begin his project: to capture images of ballerinas in urban environments. Those images first started appearing on Blogspot, but have since migrated to Facebook. [via] posted by netbros at 2:14 PM PST - 9 comments
Working on the Ending. Writer Gail Godwin reflects on the way she works now: "Inevitable for the old writer is the slowdown of word retrieval... All it once took was the slightest tug at the bell for the vigorous servant, accompanied by backup synonyms, to report for duty... You can rail at your 'senior moment' like those tiresome people who bring a conversation to a halt because they can’t remember the name of a place or person... Or you can leave a blank, to be filled in later... For me, a consolation prize of word delay has been an increased intolerance for the threadbare phrase. I don’t want anyone on my pages to 'burst into tears' or 'just perceptibly' do anything, ever again." posted by ocherdraco at 12:50 PM PST - 12 comments
"Motherfucker, I just gave you the most important advice that anyone in
the whole world has ever given you. You may not understand the
profound importance of this advice. If you learn nothing else from
reading this, you need to learn these two things. SHOWER EVERY FUCKING
DAY, AND WEAR DEODORANT EVERY FUCKING DAY." The Digipen Survival Guide full of sage guidance. [more inside] posted by yeloson at 10:58 AM PST - 74 comments
Cool little video profile of Chad Robertson, co-owner, with his wife, Elisabeth Prueitt, of San Francisco's Tartine bakery. Chad is obsessed with bread. [more inside] posted by AceRock at 8:22 AM PST - 16 comments
ReturnTheDVD.org"Dear Archbishop Nienstedt,
We write to you as a small group of faithful Catholics. This letter, however, represents the voices of thousands of families who were as disheartened as we were by the DVD Preserving Marriage in Minnesota..."[more inside] posted by jillithd at 7:11 AM PST - 31 comments
You can tell if a person is liberal or conservative by how a person responds to your "gaze cues". Look away at something while you're talking and a liberal will tend to look at it, too. Conservatives are "completely immune" to this effect. [more inside] posted by MuadDib at 6:47 PM PST - 94 comments
Robert Rodriguez's Machete ( Previously) started out as a joke, and went on to be a rather successful film. However, Texas Governor Rick Perry feels the movie doesn't portray Texas positively and has revoked the productions tax breaks. possibly at the cost of Texas's film industry. posted by djduckie at 4:28 PM PST - 79 comments
After more threats of extinction than anyone could remember, the New York City Off-Track Betting Corporation unexpectedly made good on a threat of its own and closed the doors to its parlors on Tuesday night. ... About 50 parlors around the city were shuttered. Some 1,000 employees lost their jobs. And a revenue stream that had funneled tens of millions of dollars a year to breeders, track owners and related businesses dried up. Another piece of gritty old New York had gone the way of the Automat and the Times Square peep show. posted by Joe Beese at 2:21 PM PST - 35 comments
Is Chillwave the Next Big Music Trend? - Wiki: Chillwave is a debated genre of music where artists are often characterized by their heavy use of effects processing, synthesizers, looping, sampling, and heavily filtered vocals with simple melodic lines. Its musical predecessors are diverse and include the synthpop of the 1980s, shoegaze, ambient, musique concrète and various types of music outside of the Western World. In this case, nostalgia of 80s synthpop is filtered through a distorted lens, re-envisioning the era in a more vague and lo-fi sense. Just don't call them that. You can always check in at the Hipster Runoff (the birthplace of the term) for news about the vaguely new subgenre. [more inside] posted by Christ, what an asshole at 1:42 PM PST - 103 comments
Top 10s of 2010. Each Saturday, we pore through our favorite tips and tricks to find 10 great hacks surrounding any subject, from food and thumb drives to browsers and Wi-Fi. Here are our most popular Top 10s of 2010. posted by nickyskye at 11:27 AM PST - 15 comments
James Burke's popular television show Connections is available in its entirety online. Connections, which ran in 1978, was a unique take on the question of historical and scientific advancement. From wikipedia: "The series traced paths of invention and discovery through their interrelationships in history, with each episode chronicling a particular path, usually in chronological order. ... It was followed by the 20-part Connections2 (1994) and then the 10-part Connections3 (1997) series. Later, it was shown in more than 50 countries and appeared in about 350 university and college curricula. Additionally, the bookthat followed the series was also a best seller." [more inside] posted by SpacemanStix at 9:59 AM PST - 76 comments
Monday, December 6, 2010: WASHINGTON— “Attorney General Eric Holder announced today the results of Operation Broken Trust, a nationwide operation organized by the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force to target investment fraud. To date, the operation has involved enforcement actions against 343 criminal defendants and 189 civil defendants for fraud schemes that harmed more than 120,000 victims throughout the country. The operation’s criminal cases involved more than $8.3 billion in estimated losses and the civil cases involved estimated losses of more than $2.1 billion. Operation Broken Trust is the first national operation of its kind to target a broad array of investment fraud schemes that directly prey upon the investing public.” —Or, well, maybe, perhaps, not so much.[more inside] posted by kipmanley at 9:10 AM PST - 24 comments
“When I was a kid growing up I was obsessed with animals and monsters… I’d draw them everyday, and when I grew up I either wanted to be a zoologist or a monster hunter… When I got a bit older I realized that being a zoologist was less exciting than I had imagined, and that ‘monster hunter’ isn’t even a real job, so I just kept drawing. I pretty much do the exact same thing at 29 years old that I did when I was 9 years old.”
Nicholas Di Genova weaves organisms together in pen and ink. [more inside] posted by emilyd22222 at 9:07 PM PST - 11 comments
Loving father. Caring husband. Secret octopus. Octodad! "Master mundane tasks with his unwieldy boneless tentacles while simultaneously keeping his cephalopodian nature a secret from his human family." posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:14 PM PST - 27 comments
2010 Has seen its share of one-hit-wonder hip hop acts. Standing out from the crowd is a collective of creative youngsters (ages 16-19) from Los Angeles known as OFWGKTA (Odd Future/Wolf Gang/Kill Them All). [more inside] posted by broadway bill at 4:07 PM PST - 34 comments
The American Century, proclaimed so triumphantly at the start of World War II, will be tattered and fading by 2025, its eighth decade, and could be history by 2030. posted by Joe Beese at 2:17 PM PST - 80 comments
During the first world war, thousands of horses were drafted into the War Effort and sent to the Front.
Faced with a horse shortage, the Thomas Ward steelworks in Sheffield acquired an elephant and her handler from a passing circus. Lizzie Wardworked at Thomas Ward's for a number of years, getting up to various pranks before she retired with sore feet. posted by emilyw at 1:07 PM PST - 6 comments
2019: A Future Imagined - A short film were Syd Mead, designer and concept artist (probably most notable for for his work on Blade Runner, Aliens and Tron)
“reflects upon the nature of creativity and how it drives the future.” (SLVimeo) posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:06 AM PST - 13 comments
The Department of Homeland Security and Wal-Mart have announced a partnership to promote the recent "If You See Something, Say Something" campaign, which urges citizens to report "suspicious activity." At select locations, a brief DHS video message will urge shoppers to "contact local law enforcement" if they see anything out of the ordinary. Over 230 stores began playing these short videos Monday, with another 588 stores in 27 states to come on-board in the next few weeks. [more inside] posted by Despondent_Monkey at 4:32 PM PST - 189 comments
"In six days every single living cell in the world will die. You have one chance to save the world." This is a short adventure game. Use arrow keys to move around and the space bar to interact. If you want to play this, avoid reading the thread. You do not want it spoiled. It is not a twisty game, but in this journey it is better to not know what lies ahead. posted by Kattullus at 2:42 PM PST - 109 comments
A longitudinal study to be published in Jan 2011's Pediatrics (abstract, PDF of article) shows that GLBT youth are about 40 percent more likely to be punished by schools, police, and courts than their straight peers. [more inside] posted by hippybear at 9:31 AM PST - 27 comments
Who was Eddie Klep? Everybody knows about the black man who integrated the major leagues in 1947, but hardly anyone knows about the white man who integrated the Negro Leagues the year before. Eddie Klep was no role model, but he deserves to be remembered, and Chuck Brodsky (who's written a bunch of baseball songs) did his part with the "Ballad of Eddie Klepp" (YouTube, lyrics). The name actually has just one p; Brodsky regrets the error (which is also made in this short piece, with lively quotes from Klep's wife). (Thanks, Ken!) posted by languagehat at 8:33 AM PST - 9 comments
Julian Assange has been arrested after turning himself in in london. He has been refused bail by the court and has been remanded to custody until at least the 14th of December. Assange is wanted for questioning in Sweden on charges that he committed an offense called "Sex by surprise." He has vowed to fight extradition. posted by orville sash at 7:58 AM PST - 1279 comments
"I was really excited to get the chance to finally meet these pandas, but when I asked to see them, I was told (after a lengthy pause) that they had grown too big, and her mum had sent them back to the zoo only the week before." Billy Bullshit celebrates the tall tales that we all pretend to swallow until the teller is well out of earshot. posted by mippy at 6:23 AM PST - 29 comments
Chen has a daily routine—waking up at 3am, she makes her way to the vegetable wholesaler and sets up her stall, which she tends till seven or eight in the evening. The first to arrive in the dark, damp market and the last to leave, other stall-owners have fondly nicknamed her ‘market manager.’ Chen holds the stall her father left her dearly. Yuan-Jin Vegetables is her everything. Selling at “a bundle for 30 dollars*, three bundles for 50,” Chen earns only marginal profits. Yet, her frugality has allowed her to donate about NT$10 million (nearly Rs1.5 crore) [approx. US$330,000] towards various charitable causes, including helping schools, orphanages and poor children. posted by nickyskye at 1:20 PM PST - 17 comments
Why Are There No Great Women Chefs?In 2007 Michelin awarded French chef Anne-Sophie Pic three stars, making her only the fourth woman in her country’s history to receive that honor (ﬁfty years had passed since the last of her sex had garnered that third sparkler).2 The following year, in the United Kingdom, it was considered breaking news when ten female chefs won any Michelin stars at all...[For] the 2009 James Beard Awards gala... “Women in Food” was the chosen motif, but since only sixteen of the evening’s ninety-six nominees were, in fact, women, it seemed like a cruel joke. In the end, only two of those sixteen went home victorious, out of nineteen winners total...[I]n Bravo tv’s Top Chef Masters competition, a paltry three out of twenty-four American “Masters” were women. [via 3 Quarks Daily] posted by caddis at 12:27 PM PST - 131 comments
The naughtiest word in English? In an unbelievable coincidence, first a prime time Radio broadcaster [on the serious BBC Radio 4 station], then the well known political correspondent & broadcaster Andrew Marr on the same station, then Nick Herbert MPin the House of Commons, all managed to Spoonerise the name of a government minister with his position.
His name? Jeremy Hunt.
His department? Culture.
All started by... JamesNaughtie. See what he did there? posted by dash_slot- at 12:06 PM PST - 58 comments
In 2004, Minnesota student Dan Markingson committed suicide while participating in a clinical drug trial for various mood disorders. Trial sponsors the University of Minnesota and AstraZeneca were cleared of blame by the FDA in 2005. Last week, a group of faculty members at the university wrote an open letter to the university's Board of Regents requesting further investigation due to "troubling questions" that remain unanswered and a concern over "conflicts of interest" in the Academic Health Center. posted by modernnomad at 9:38 AM PST - 21 comments
Google eBooks, the new Google eBooks store that will compete with Amazon on price and selection. Introducing Google eBooks (video). Launch USA only. NPR: "..independent booksellers will get a cut of the revenue when people buy e-books on their local seller's website instead of directly from Google." posted by stbalbach at 9:19 AM PST - 85 comments
Figment.com is a new, free community and platform for young people to share their fiction writing, "connect with other readers and discover new stories and authors. Users are invited to write novels, short stories and poems, collaborate with other writers and give and receive feedback on the work posted on the site." (Via) posted by zarq at 2:35 PM PST - 19 comments
Draw Brandon Draw is a web comic by Brandon B. that follows short, surreal story arcs. The current arc (which seems to be shaping into something more sustained) is about psychics living in a closed community called "The City". The comic itself is mostly work safe, but the current blog content is Not Safe For Work. [more inside] posted by codacorolla at 11:18 AM PST - 4 comments
This Old PoemThose familiar with the long-running PBS TV series This Old House may be able to discern where I am going with this series of essays. Basically, I seek to rehabilitate (by rewriting) well-known poems....[more inside] posted by kid ichorous at 10:00 PM PST - 43 comments
New Weird Australia is a not-for-profit, government-sponsored initiative promoting new eclectic & experimental music - plenty of free downloads & podcasts are available on the site. posted by UbuRoivas at 4:11 PM PST - 6 comments
“Office of Career Services” firstname.lastname@example.org Date: November 30, 2010 15:26:53 EST To: xxx
We received a call today from a SIPA alumnus who is working at the State Department. He asked us to pass along the following information to anyone who will be applying for jobs in the federal government, since all would require a background investigation and in some instances a security clearance. The documents released during the past few months through Wikileaks are still considered classified documents. He recommends that you DO NOT post links to these documents nor make comments on social media sites such as Facebook or through Twitter. Engaging in these activities would call into question your ability to deal with confidential information, which is part of most positions with the federal government.
MBC Star Audition, an American Idol-style singing competition show from major Korean broadcaster MBC, let aspiring contestants audition via YouTube. Audition videos can be seen through the mbcaudition YouTube channel. Videos had to be 100 seconds or less, with contestants (solo or group) singing a K-pop song. Contestants from over 25 countries submitted videos, giving viewers a glimpse of their talent (and room decor). [more inside] posted by needled at 7:57 PM PST - 5 comments
California's ailing Republicans: A dying breed? 'Republicans are relishing the coming of a new day on Capitol Hill. But across the country in California, the party of Nixon and Reagan is drifting toward obscurity. The latest sign of imperiled health: In a year Republicans notched big victories in Congress, governor's offices and statehouses around the nation, California Democrats made a clean sweep of eight statewide contests on Nov. 2. Democrats padded their majority in the Legislature, where the party controls both chambers and no congressional seats changed parties. California counted more registered Republicans in 1988 than it does today, even though the state population has since grown by about 10 million.''It's been said the future happens first in California, and the state hit a little-noticed milestone this month that will have implications in voting booths for years to come. For the first time, Hispanics account for more than half the students in the state's public schools. They will be tomorrow's voters.' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 6:40 PM PST - 47 comments
"Holland Reynolds, a star runner from a small private high school in San Francisco, collapsed at the state cross-country meet and crawled across the finish line to clinch the championship for her team." Her coach, Jim Tracy, had been increasingly debilitated by Lou Gehrig's disease during the season, which made her and the team "really want to win it for Jim." The video of the race is here. Holland Reynolds approaches the finish line at 19 minutes 33 seconds into the video. posted by ferdydurke at 5:24 PM PST - 40 comments
Elaine Kaufman, who became something of a symbol of New York as the salty den mother of Elaine’s, one of the city’s best-known restaurants and a second home for almost half a century to a bevy of writers, actors, athletes and other celebrities, died Friday in Manhattan. She was 81. posted by Joe Beese at 1:39 PM PST - 21 comments
To locate Inky’s target, we first start by selecting the position two tiles in front of Pac-Man in his current direction of travel, similar to Pinky’s targeting method. From there, imagine drawing a vector from Blinky’s position to this tile, and then doubling the length of the vector. The tile that this new, extended vector ends on will be Inky’s actual target.
A new brand of super shoppers use coupons and other discounts to get products for absurdly low prices. The Web has turned this group from a series of independent operators into cohesive groups, frustrating retailers. posted by reenum at 9:24 AM PST - 126 comments
Let's say you're me and you're in math class, and you're supposed to be learning about factoring. Trouble is, your teacher is too busy trying to convince you that factoring is a useful skill for the average person to know with real-world applications ranging from passing your state exams all the way to getting a higher SAT score and unfortunately does not have the time to show you why factoring is actually interesting. It's perfectly reasonable for you to get bored in this situation. So like any reasonable person, you start doodling.[more inside] posted by ErWenn at 8:39 AM PST - 27 comments
If you enjoy games like Myst and Riven, take a crack at Cageling. It's a good thing your prison is a luxurious rococo palazzo, because you'll probably be there for a while. [more inside] posted by Quietgal at 7:38 AM PST - 26 comments
When you receive your Logonom logo, you’re not just opening a symbol, a brand or a small representation of you, you’re also opening peace of mind. And that’s something we’ve worked hard for 113 years to pack into each and every box. posted by Terminal Verbosity at 6:39 AM PST - 33 comments
"In order to renew my Fangraphs membership, every six months, Dave Cameron flies out to meet me in an unmarked parking garage in Washington DC, where I swear a blood oath by candlelight on a stack of Necronomicons never to write anything complimentary about Derek Jeter’s mobility or range. Cameron’s post about Jeter yesterday was faithful to our sworn mission. The awful secret of Derek Jeter’s fifth Gold Glove requires a little background in a few of the more esoteric domains of human knowledge. This may be the most important blog post I ever write; if it is the last, dear readers, only you will know the truth."
Sure, FanGraphs appears to be a geeky site for baseball stat-heads who live in their mothers’ basements, crunch numbers whilst sipping Diet Dr. Pepper, and invent silly acronyms instead of dating girls. But FanGraphs bloggers quite firmly embrace their own nerdiness – even going so far as to create NERD, the stat, which rates the “watchability” of a team. Furthermore, they so often blend humor, politics, literature, and philosophy into their writings that to shun the site is to deprive yourself of fascinating, scrumptious nuggets of surprisingly accessible, occasionally math-heavy, and nearly always well-written baseball geekery. Would you like to know if better players have more Twitter followers? Wondered, Is The DH Dying? Derek Jeter cheated... so what? How about a lengthy meditation on baseball and the science of happiness?[more inside] posted by ORthey at 9:20 PM PST - 30 comments
"When you send a text message on the Verizon network, you can address your text by choosing a name out of your contact list, or you can address it by typing in a phone number. You can also type in a name. And if you type in L-E-I-L-A, then—bizarrely—your text will come to me.
This is a blog about the texts I have received. All of them are from strangers, intended for other Leilas, but obviously they missed their marks." posted by danb at 9:11 PM PST - 48 comments
Murderbullets, 102 pages of power armour, guns, mega-scale rapidly mutating biological horror, cancer sticks, tanks and general comics mahem by James Stokoe. posted by Artw at 9:10 PM PST - 17 comments
"From 1965 to 1971, we played together, inventing one thing or another.... But, like the bride of Bluebeard, there was one door I was not allowed to enter. That was the door marked “Colorforms”. That alone was off limits. Harry had invented Colorforms, the vinyl plastic pieces that stuck to a shiny surface. And he was convinced that there was no idea or application involving Colorforms, nor could there be, that he had not thought up already.... [H]e would entertain no further discussion on the subject. The very mention of “stick-ons” was off limits. The door to Colorforms was shut and bolted. Until 6 years later, through a curious set of circumstances, I broke it down once and forever."The Colorforms Years is Mel Birnkrant's illustrated history of two decades of ups and downs working with Colorforms, the first plastic-based creative toy and one of the first toys promoted in television commercials. [more inside] posted by jessamyn at 8:20 PM PST - 68 comments
"Weddings are elaborate in Dagestan, the largest autonomy in the North Caucasus. On August 22
we attended a wedding in Makhachkala, Dagestan's capital: Duma member and Dagestan Oil Company chief Gadzhi Makhachev's son married a classmate. The lavish display and heavy drinking concealed the deadly serious North Caucasus politics of land, ethnicity, clan, and alliance."
Thus begins a highly informative and somewhat amusing diplomatic cable, recently leaked by wikileaks. [more inside] posted by Guernsey Halleck at 7:15 PM PST - 38 comments
Following the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961, the rail networks of East and West Berlin were divided, necessitating the closure of a number of stations, creating ghost stations, through which West Berlin trains slowed, but did not stop. They appeared on West Berlin U-/S-Bahn maps as stations at which trains do not stop, in the case of stations lying in East Berlin through which trains passed or as out of service. The map also included some stations reachable only from East Berlin trains. The East Berlin map omitted the West Berlin lines and stations entirely. [more inside] posted by hoyland at 6:44 PM PST - 17 comments
Interested in doing a small favour to the environment? In raising awareness about planetary issues? In supporting an international environmental organization? Next time you’re going to share a document, save it as a WWF.[more inside] posted by Shepherd at 10:08 AM PST - 45 comments
"Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist, but that's just peanuts to space. " -- Douglas Adams [more inside] posted by SpacemanStix at 9:54 AM PST - 73 comments
After a viral pandemic struck the world a few years ago, scientists had to scramble to stop the spread of the virus but they could do nothing for those who had already been infected. Now those who were exposed face their biggest challenge yet.... High School.[more inside] posted by Potomac Avenue at 9:11 AM PST - 10 comments
Paul Thomas Anderson (the auteur behind There Will Be Blood and Magnolia) is planning to adapt Thomas Pynchon’s 2009 novel, Inherent Vice. Robert Downey Jr. would play the lead role of Doc Sportello. posted by naju at 9:05 AM PST - 37 comments
The Defense Department forced all "war on terror" detainees at the Guantanamo Bay prison to take a high dosage of a controversial antimalarial drug, mefloquine, an act that an Army public health physician called "pharmacologic waterboarding". The US military administered the drug despite Pentagon knowledge that mefloquine caused severe neuropsychiatric side effects, including suicidal thoughts, hallucinations and anxiety. The drug was used on the prisoners whether they had malaria or not.[more inside] posted by Joe Beese at 8:28 AM PST - 73 comments
A simple idea: take an ordinary savings account, but instead of paying interest to account holders, hold a lottery to see who gets the lump sum. Freakonomics Radio investigates Prize-linked savings (PLS) accounts (Part 1, Part 2), which combine two things that seem completely at odds with each other: saving money and gambling. In Highland Park, MI, PLS accounts have been very successful at converting "non-savers" into "savers". Why hasn't it caught on in the US? It's illegal in most states, of course. posted by Jonathan Harford at 7:43 AM PST - 33 comments
A little ahead of schedule, Yahoo, AOL and Bing have released their lists of items most often searched for in 2010. Google hasn't released their list but you can see popular searches using their Insights program. posted by morganannie at 6:58 AM PST - 53 comments
The Long Recall is a daily news aggregator chronicling the buildup to the U.S. Civil War. The daily posts are "digests of the news and commentary that an intelligent American might have had accessible 150 years ago." posted by lalex at 9:49 PM PST - 11 comments
Considering Jonathan Coulton's lyric-writing, any text-based video of one of his songs is going to be good. But when graphic artist Jarrett Heather committed acts of "kinetic typography" to the ode to suburbia "Shop Vac", he made a SLYT that deserves multiple viewings. posted by oneswellfoop at 9:24 PM PST - 67 comments
A Brief History of Mathematics is a BBC series of ten fifteen-minute podcasts by Professor Marcus du Sautoy about the history of mathematics from Newton and Leibniz to Nicolas Bourbaki, the pseudonym of a group of French 20th Century mathematicians. Among those covered by Professor du Sautoy are Euler, Fourier and Poincaré. The podcasts also include short interviews with people such as Brian Eno and Roger Penrose. posted by Kattullus at 9:17 PM PST - 11 comments
“NASA will hold a news conference at 2 p.m. EST (11am PST) on Thursday, Dec. 2, to discuss an astrobiology finding that will impact the search for evidence of extraterrestrial life. Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the universe.” Watch it HERE live. [more inside] posted by Sprocket at 9:09 PM PST - 102 comments
"Regardless of political stance, no one can deny the joy felt upon seeing your loved ones return home safely -- WelcomeHomeBlog.com is a site celebrating that amazing feeling. Visit daily for heartwarming stories, videos and pictures of members of our courageous armed forces returning home to their families and friends..." posted by zizzle at 8:10 PM PST - 5 comments
‘Don’t let up on ’em. Drive ’em off the road. Starve ’em to death. Pull their money out of their bank accounts.’ The colorful, on the lam Randy and Evi Quaid are interviewed and profiled at length in the newest Vanity Fair and Esquire magazines. posted by item at 1:55 PM PST - 44 comments
Few bands have undergone as many reinventions as the Misfits (no, not thoseMisfits). Formed in New Jersey in 1977 by Glenn Danzig (vocals and keyboard), Jerry Only (bass) and Manny Martinez (drums), the original lineup played at CBGB and released one unclassifiable guitar-less rock single. In late '77 guitarist Franché Coma was brought on and Martinez was kicked out of the band in favor of a drummer named Mr. Jim. With this lineup, their sound began to take on a more defined sound, merging with the developing second wave of North American punk rock. [more inside] posted by 256 at 1:53 PM PST - 58 comments
A Serbian Film: Not “torture porn” but an allegory of civil war. Reputed to be a frightening, unwatchable movie reminiscent of torture porn, A Serbian Film (IMDB listing) is actually, according to Jim Henshaw, “exquisitely shot and beautifully designed.… There is no explicit sex and many of the worst horrors are clearly fake. This is not a film that panders to fans of horror or porn, but it definitely is about exploitation.… [T]en minutes in you realize what you are really watching is a re-creation of the Serbian experience of the Balkan wars…. The horrific scenes described above and others that I found far more unsettling are clearly the atrocities of the Balkan conflict moulded into horrific set pieces within the metaphor of a porn film gone horribly wrong.” posted by joeclark at 1:48 PM PST - 58 comments
Midwest label Suburban Sprawl puts out a CD of X-Mas music every winter. They've collected the last eight years of them here. Highlights include The High Strung, The Hard Lessons, and the common lament, "Santa Just Crashed Into My House and He's Drunk as Fuck." posted by klangklangston at 1:11 PM PST - 16 comments
Think your taxes are high now? A list of the top ten salaries in the US in 1941, and the taxes they paid (spoiler: 65-73% tax rate! but, still doesn't include total compensation, though, which makes it a little sketchy). Interestingly, the NYTimes couldn't figure out two of the names, C.S. Woolman (who is probably C.E. Woolman, one of the founders of delta airlines) and another mysterious name, J.C. Owsley, that seems to be unidentifiable... posted by yeoz at 1:10 PM PST - 91 comments
back in October, when reddit was helping raise money for DonorsChoose, Stephen Colbert (major reddit fan, BTW) provided us with an extra incentive: if we raised $500,000 before the rally, he would let reddit ask him anything. Well, you guys held up your end of the deal ($575,000 and counting, with the vast majority of donations coming from redditors). You asked some great questions. And now, we have answers to the top 11, as voted by you.[more inside] posted by hippybear at 11:30 AM PST - 28 comments
Built as part of the fifth /dev/fort developer retreat, Spacelog.org allows you to explore early space missions via the original NASA transcripts. Currently live are Mercury 6 which made John Glenn the first American in orbit, and the 'successful failure' Apollo 13 (The transcribed key moment and the original). Alongside the transcripts are supporting materials from the NASA archives including photography and descriptions of the mission phases. The developers are looking for help to digitise the Gemini 7, Apollo 8 and Apollo 11 missions. posted by garrett at 6:34 AM PST - 11 comments