Join 3,433 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

December 2011 Archives

December 31
"Somehow It Got Easy To Laugh Out Loud"
The AV Club has started a really cool feature called "One Track Mind." It takes one artist/group and one song, and asks them to talk about the inspiration or circumstances behind it. Then they perform it (warning: advertising, but worth it). [more inside]
posted by bardic at 10:26 PM PST - 14 comments

You got Atari in my geetar!
Behold the gAtari 2600. An Australian musician performing under the pseudonym cTrix specializes in creating chiptunes using a combination of games consoles from 1977 - 1992, including a Commodore 64, Amiga 500, a clear-cased Gameboy, and an Atari 2600. The latter is possibly the most striking setup, incorporating the Atari (running custom-written sequencing software) into an oversized guitar body, with a fretboard packed with Boss stompboxes and a great pun as a name — gAtari.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:50 PM PST - 40 comments

Space Quest II! Starring Sludge Vohaul (The Alien MORE Hideous than Your Aunt Hildegard)!
16-bit color schemes, in a classic retro VGA interface! New soundtracks and voiceovers! No typing required! Infamous Adventures resurrects and lovingly remakes Sierra Games from the 1980's: Space Quest II: Vohaul's Revenge and Kings Quest III. SQ2 was released yesterday after more than five years in production, and comes complete with a cheesy trailer. Available for download for PC and Mac, but be forewarned, the game is a total memory hog, and uses up a whole meg of RAM.
posted by zarq at 9:08 PM PST - 12 comments

Remember to flush your Famicom after playing
??? WHAT IS KUSOGE ??? From the Japanese for "shit", kuso, and "game." They're relentlessly terrible video games that in some cases have attracted a following because of their awfulness. Here are some of the most commonly recognized examples: [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:56 PM PST - 30 comments

A Longer Time Ago, Two Galaxies Crossed Paths...
Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer explains how Star Wars has dulled the edge that made science fiction such a pertinent film genre. A Galaxy Far, Far Away My Ass... Pt. Two, Pt. Three [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 8:27 PM PST - 43 comments

Todd Haynes' "Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story"
One of the more famous suppressed films of recent years is Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story, an early work by writer/director Todd Haynes (Safe, Velvet Goldmine, Far from Heaven). Filmed in 1987, the short film -- which relates the rise and fall of Karen Carpenter with a cast of Barbie dolls -- barely got a year's worth of festival time in 1989 before the twin iron boots of A&M Records and Richard Carpenter came down on Haynes.* [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:51 PM PST - 29 comments

Welcome to Muppet Labs where the future is being made today!
Muppet Labs, where the future is being made today, is the site of scientific enquiry, technological breakthroughs, and sundry explosions on The Muppet Show. Headed by Dr. Bunsen Honeydew, the lab premiered in episode 108 and lasted all five seasons. During the first season, Bunsen worked alone. Beginning in season two, the good doctor acquired an assistant-cum-guinea pig, the hapless Beaker. An annotated list of every single televised appearance of the Muppet Labs is after the fold! [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 7:42 PM PST - 30 comments

Time keeps on slippin'
We've all seen variations on the personal time-lapse video -- a snapshot every day for six years, or a look at a young girl's first decade. But nobody's done it quite like Sam Klemke. For thirty-five years the itinerant freelance cartoonist has documented his life in short year-end reviews, a funny, weary, eccentric, and hopeful record dating all the way back to 1977. Recently optioned for documentary treatment by the government of Australia, you can skim Sam's opus in reverse in the striking video "35 Years Backwards Thru Time with Sam Klemke," an ever-evolving home movie montage that grows grainier and grainier as it tracks Sam "from a paunchy middle aged white bearded self deprecating schluby old fart, to a svelt, full haired, clean shaven, self-important but clueless 20 year old."
posted by Rhaomi at 7:05 PM PST - 7 comments

Carts Of Darkness
Murray Siple, a snowboarder and extreme sport filmmaker, suffered a debilitating injury in an auto accident which ended his career. Or so he thought. Years later, he came across a group of homeless men in Vancouver, BC who combine their livelihood of collecting bottles for recycling with their love of speeding down hills on shopping carts. He made a film about them which avoids easy clichés and provides a portrait of humanity and thrill-seeking that is joyous and enlightening. Carts Of Darkness [59m24s] can be viewed in full (even in HD) at the National Film Board of Canada website.
posted by hippybear at 6:16 PM PST - 15 comments

"The fallacy in this reasoning is glaring."
Progressives and the Ron Paul fallacies: Ron Paul’s candidacy is a mirror held up in front of the face of America’s Democratic Party and its progressive wing, and the image that is reflected is an ugly one; more to the point, it’s one they do not want to see because it so violently conflicts with their desired self-perception. [more inside]
posted by troll at 5:49 PM PST - 340 comments

Party like it's 1978, or 1993, or 2000, or maybe even 2011.
It's New Years Eve (or already the first day of the new year, depending on where you are), and you may be looking for something other than the radio to play for a countdown. Head backwards, then, to cruise into the 80s with the Grateful Dead for the closing of Winterland. Or join the Janglers to say goodby to 1993 and hello to 1994 at Peabody's Downunder. You can check out twelve hours of Essential Mixing and relive the transition from 2000 to 2001. Get closer to the present day with some big band and swing into 2010 in style. Say hello to 2011 with B.A.G.S. (Bullman, Ashworth, Guggino, Sipe), spend an hour and a half with Blu Mar Ten or six and a half hours with Mr Scruff. And if you're looking for something new for tonight, try some mixes from Redondo, Montreal Funk Monkeys, and a countdown minimix from DJ Raymix.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:19 PM PST - 21 comments

"Nothing compares to you, except maybe a banana, peeled or unpeeled, I don't care, though when they're unpeeled they can get awful messy"
Sinead O'Connor plays a concert in a church in Reykjavík at Iceland Airwaves last October. Icelandic state broadcaster, RÚV, recorded the concert and you can listen to it in full. There is some talking in Icelandic in the beginning, but the concert starts up at around three and a half minutes in. This concert was not long after her online jokes about her lack of companionship making her resort to bananas. She cracks many jokes about that and the fact that she's playing in a church. And she's in brilliant form as a performer and plays for almost two hours. As a bonus, here's not-very-high-quality video of that night's rendition of Nothing Compares to You, which includes a bit about bananas.
posted by Kattullus at 3:27 PM PST - 11 comments

Mineways
Minecraft was already pretty cool (previously: 1 2 3 4 5 6). Here's something that brings it closer to the real world: "With the Mineways program you can select from a Minecraft world map and render it, or send it to a 3D printer or 3D printing service such as Shapeways." Examples are within the link, and here are other real-life examples using the Mineways program. Here's something equally (if not more-so) impressive, using a somewhat different technique: an entire Minecraft village, rendered and printed in 3D on a Zprinter 650. [via reddit]
posted by SpacemanStix at 1:53 PM PST - 17 comments

Raiders of the Lost Archives
Shot-by-shot comparison of "Raiders of the Lost Ark" vs. scenes from 30 different adventure films made between 1919-1973
posted by Artw at 1:20 PM PST - 62 comments

HiHiHuHu! MiMaMO! KiKOOLOL! BLiBLU MAMAHU! HOP!
Boulet is a well-known cartoonist and illustrator in France, but I think he's pretty obscure in the English-speaking world. He's been posting a popular blog in comic form since 2004 (in French), but lately he's been going through the backlog and translating his comics into English, posting a new one every few days. He covers daily life, vacations, the work of a cartoonist, comics conventions, and random crap with cute illustrations and self-deprecating humor. Be sure to click the "REACT" or "Comments" link on each entry - he added a bonus comic to most of the entries at translation time. Happy New Year (2006)! [more inside]
posted by moonmilk at 1:11 PM PST - 6 comments

Jamel Shabazz
Jamel Shabazz has been documenting the ‘Urban Life’, most famously, 80s Brooklyn, for over 30 years. His work has been featured in the New York Times and a documentary film as well as in a recently expanded and re-relased book. An interview and a few snaps from the book.
posted by latkes at 1:09 PM PST - 8 comments

An Alternative to Dick Clark
The Beatles vs Joan Jett vs Cypress Hill vs House of Pain vs RATM - Mash Together

Johnny Cash vs Jackson 5 vs Steve Miller Band - Folsom Prison Robin

Franz Ferdinand vs Stealers Wheel vs Nirvana vs Michael Jackson vs Def Cut –Franz Tranz

Ramones vs Jet - Are You Gonna Be My Blitzkrieg Girl

The Beatles vs LCD Soundsystem vs The Kinks –The Brits Are Coming To My House

These mashups – and many more – are the creations of DJ Faroff of Brazil. Other projects of his worth mentioning here are a samba version of the Star Wars theme and a klezmer remix of Lady Gaga.
posted by jason's_planet at 12:23 PM PST - 23 comments

Late-deafened music lover rediscovers love of music via cochlear implant
Deaf guy goes shopping for high-end headphones and other tales of musical rediscovery from Lee Walker, a lifelong music-lover who lost most of his hearing in early adulthood. A cochlear implant restored usable but quite different hearing, which Walker put to use enjoying music by any means necessary – captioned music videos, giant DJ-quality cans worn over external implant hardware, plugging an iPod Touch directly into that hardware.
posted by joeclark at 11:27 AM PST - 4 comments

I had a sinking feeling...
2012 & The End Of The World (SLYT)
posted by rodmandirect at 10:57 AM PST - 67 comments

"The demand that I make of my reader is that he should devote his whole Life to reading my works."
EU copyright on Joyce works ends at midnight. From tomorrow, January 1st 2012, writings published during Joyce’s lifetime – Dubliners, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, Ulysses and Finnegans Wake – are available for publication and quotation without reference or payment to the James Joyce estate.
posted by Fizz at 10:52 AM PST - 77 comments

insert humorous quip re: correlation & causation, with an extra side of beans
Relating SCIENCE! to everyday life, Ouch: A Year's Worth of Occasionally Disturbing Research on How to Get Ahead is comedic advice on how to excel in the new year (from the usually-more-serious Harvard Business Review's "The Daily Stat") - reminiscent of Barking Up The Wrong Tree, a blog of tongue-in-cheek nuggets of research by Eric Barker.
posted by flex at 10:41 AM PST - 1 comments

On the bathroom floor with a wombat is no way to go through life, Yo-Yo Ma!
Yo-Yo Ma on the floor of a bathroom with Brookfield Zoo’s Wilbur the Wombat. Photo by Peter Sagal host of Wait Wait...Don’t Tell Me! (gratuitous bean-plating XKCD.) On YouTube: Yo-Yo Ma, Peter Sagal & a wombat (HD) Sun Times story: Yo-Yo Ma and a wombat meet on a bathroom floor. Seriously Previously
posted by cjorgensen at 10:27 AM PST - 15 comments

CD-ROM [...] is the next step for savvy musicians on the cutting edge.
"It's 1993, I better wake up and be part of it. I'm sitting there, a 1977 punk watching Courtney Love talk about punk, watching Nirvana talk about punk, and this is my reply." [more inside]
posted by 256 at 9:20 AM PST - 89 comments

The Feds Were My Biggest Customer
On October 22, 2011 I was arrested by the DEA for cultivation and distribution of psilocybin mushrooms.
posted by telstar at 9:02 AM PST - 88 comments

An unusual coup d'etat
Today is the 30th anniversary of Flt. Lt. Jerry Rawling's coup d'etat catapulting him into the crowded ranks of military dictators in Africa. Yet, Ghana chooses to celebrate this date and Rawlings' speech on this historic occasion has been shared and published, his words hearkened to (albeit) and his global standing only embellished by his [role]* as the African Union's envoy to Somalia. What manner of military dictatorship was this and what changes did the coup accomplish in democratic Ghana, today considered the fastest growing and stable Sub Saharan economy expected to be elevated to middle income status in the near future? [more inside]
posted by infini at 8:45 AM PST - 7 comments

'...hullo.... I've had a helluva year'
Scotch and Wry, Scotland's greatest comedy. As the rest of the world celebrates New year's Eve and bringing in 2012, there's the little matter of Hogmanay. You might think it's just a fancy scottish word for the start of a three day party (which it is), but it's a special time of year. And for those of us who watched the new year come in on TV, it's the point of year where we all miss Rikki Fulton's Scotch and Wry - a TV ritual for over twenty years that has never been equalled. [more inside]
posted by ewan at 7:11 AM PST - 6 comments

Sendak.
5 minutes with Maurice Sendak.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:50 AM PST - 14 comments

Austraaaaalia
Austraaaaaalia, Melbourne, kangaroos, didgeridoo, Austraaaaaalia, Olivia Newton John, Paul Hogan, Mel Gibson.
posted by signal at 6:26 AM PST - 23 comments

Alan Moore offers Thought For The Day on BBC Radio's flagship news programme
This morning's edition of Today, BBC Radio 4's flagship news programme, was guest-edited by the comedian Stewart Lee. Highlights included Alan Moore's Glycon-inspired Thought For the Day (which comes at 1 hour and 22 minutes into the show) and a completely incomprehensible interview with The Fall's Mark E. Smith (at 1 hour 47 minutes in). All this plus an avant-garde trombonist too!
posted by Paul Slade at 5:28 AM PST - 16 comments

S'more primate fun
He was taught to use matches, a skill he picked up quickly. There’s something eerie about watching Kanzi strike a match. The way he then holds the flame — taking care not to burn himself — is remarkably human. (video)
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:27 AM PST - 42 comments

All apes love their apps
Orangutans playing with iPads! It is well-known that our ape cousins are highly intelligent. When they are in captivity, it is critical to give them ways to enrich and entertain themselves. As it turns out, Orangutans love using iPads. [more inside]
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 3:04 AM PST - 22 comments

December 30
This should keep you busy for a while. The year that was 2011.
The Best And Worst Of Everything In 2011: A Mega, Meta Mashup from Fast Company. An exhaustive and eclectic amalgam of year-end lists from various sources.
posted by zardoz at 9:39 PM PST - 13 comments

Asterisk-Eating Ball is cute!
Here are a variety of strange creatures, realized by the surreal Swiss mime troupe Mummenschanz: 1 2 3 4 5 Previously, and Muppetly. MLYT
posted by JHarris at 8:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Drink up, y'all!
New Year's Eve is fast approaching, and for lots of folks that means... drinking. Plenty of drinking. And since there's no shortage of singers and songwriters who've had a little something to say about that particular topic, maybe some of the following tunes can serve as an appropriate soundtrack to your own joyous (or not?) imbibing of spirits. For example, there's... Jimmy Liggins with his succinct rendition of Drunk, and there's... [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:24 PM PST - 67 comments

The Super Power Building
The purpose of the Super Power Building has been stated as providing a dedicated center for delivering the Super Power Rundown, a high-level Scientology training course that has not yet been released.
posted by Trurl at 7:47 PM PST - 79 comments

The Bitch, The Stud and The Prawn
"...the ghost of George Walker, his family, and his business practices have continued to haunt Britain in all sorts of odd ways." Filmmaker Adam Curtis blogs about the Walker brothers (Billy and George) on the BBC website. A story of boxers, gangsters, the British film industry, Dodi Fayed, Guy Hands and... hardcore mutant prawn. [more inside]
posted by prolific at 6:51 PM PST - 13 comments

"The scream is over the top here, but in your defense, it really conveys the sound of pride leaving the body."
The Ramsey Brothers present: Home Videos with DVD Commentary: There's A Bear / Chorophobia / Not Where You Saw [via]
posted by defenestration at 5:32 PM PST - 6 comments

Mathematics and the Great Pyramid
This is a radical statement about the Pyramid, especially on the internet because all web pages that I have been able to find that deal with the Pyramid, maintain that it was built and/or inspired by either God or space aliens. Most don't even consider that it could be a rational structure designed and built by normal people.
posted by troll at 5:29 PM PST - 42 comments

We got deals! Leases!
Car dealers have found a new way to profit from people with money trouble: leasing them hand-me-down vehicles. 'The deals are pitched to customers as the cheapest way to drive a used car off the lot, with the added benefit of an easy escape for those who can't keep up with the payments. Few customers are told about the advantages on the other side of the trade. Leases can allow dealerships to sidestep interest rate caps, and there are fewer financial disclosures rules than with a conventional car loan.' 'As with Buy Here Pay Here, the leasing business caters to the millions of Americans who have been forced by a sour economy to make do with less.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 5:20 PM PST - 49 comments

31 days has September, March, June and December
A new calendar: Every third month would have 31 days, the rest 30. A 7-day leap week called XTR every "five or six years". Christmas and New Year's eternally on Sundays. And Greenwich Mean Time for all. This is the promise of the Hanke-Henry Permanent calendar, proposed by Steve Hanke and Richard Henry, researcher professors at Johns Hopkins University. The world-wide adoption process is optimistically scheduled for January 1, 2012, with universal use coming just 5 years later. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 5:00 PM PST - 53 comments

Flash game: 3 Slices
3 Slices -- For Flash Friday, your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to let the red stuff fall through the bottom of the window, by making 3 cuts through the red and white pieces.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 4:58 PM PST - 46 comments

The sky is 'Purest Blue'
Those of us who enjoy old-school chemical photography often need to calculate f-stop and exposure times. Of course you can use a ginormous table but there exists a solution from a more elegant age in which the sky can be purest blue above a very narrow old street. Marvel at Kaufmann's Posographe, a wonder of the analog age.
posted by LastOfHisKind at 3:42 PM PST - 22 comments

Empty London: Do you think he saw us this time?
Empty London on Christmas morning (full set). A couple of years ago I had the idea that it might be fun to take photos of London without humans – yes, I was motivated by that scene in Westminster from 28 Days Later. Unfortunately, not being a film director I was not really in the position to have half of London sealed off for photos – but realised that on Xmas morning there could be an opportunity. Past photos from 2010 and from 2008. [more inside]
posted by ersatz at 3:03 PM PST - 19 comments

As a banker, you have no lack of opportunities to look into the human soul
As the former head of Deutsche Bank, Hilmar Kopper was once the most powerful banker in Germany. In an interview with SPIEGEL, the 76-year-old takes stock of his career and the current crisis shaking Europe. The three main constants he has seen in the world, he says, are "money, avarice and greed."
posted by chavenet at 2:42 PM PST - 21 comments

The Bug Trainer
The best stop motion film ever? Or do you prefer The Night[mare] before Christmas?

Wladyslaw Starewicz' childhood passion for entomology led his career: he began producing short documentaries in Moscow around 1909-1910, beginning with a documentary about insects in Lithuania. In his spare time, he experimented with stop-action films using beetles, which he articulated by wiring the legs to the thorax with sealing wax! This, of course, led to his big breakthrough, released by the Van Kanjonkov Studio of Moscow: "The Battle of the Stag Beetles", the first puppet-animated film. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 2:25 PM PST - 16 comments

"You kind of expect it to be quite so... WOW!!"
Chemical Reactions. Four minutes of the best moments of stuff burning, breaking, freezing, exploding, melting, and generally reacting in interesting ways. [more inside]
posted by quin at 1:48 PM PST - 15 comments

"The father is a medicine ball and the mother is a globe"
Boy Genius Report gets an extensive and informative tour of the Times Square New Year's Eve Ball and takes us along for a the highly-informative and photo-heavy ride.
posted by gilrain at 1:46 PM PST - 2 comments

‘Technically, we’re in the United States’
The Americans who live on the "Mexican" side of the border fence in Texas face unusual hardships.
posted by reenum at 1:38 PM PST - 62 comments

Gigographies
Did Poco play the Poconos? Did Roxy Music rock the Roxy? Did U2 go to The O2? [more inside]
posted by Knappster at 12:59 PM PST - 32 comments

Let's play a love game
Kieron Gillen on sex and The Sims
posted by Artw at 12:50 PM PST - 24 comments

Flowers for the lady
"Lavatory Lovestory" Something light and warm for holiday enjoyment. A short animated film from Russia about a middle aged woman and her secret admirer. (via that most wonderful of linkblogs: The Presurfer) [more inside]
posted by caddis at 12:29 PM PST - 2 comments

The Case For Enhancing People
Just as Dante found it easier to conjure the pains of Hell than to evoke the joys of Heaven, so too do bioethicists find it easier to concoct the possible perils of a biotech-nanotech-infotech future than to appreciate how enhancements will contribute to flourishing lives. One of the chief goals of this symposium is to think about the indispensable role that virtue plays in human life. The chief motivating concern seems to be the fear that biotechnologies and other human enhancement technologies will somehow undermine human virtue. As we will see, far from undermining virtue, biotech, nanotech, and infotech enhancements will tend to support virtue; that is, they will help enable people to be actually good.
posted by jason's_planet at 12:13 PM PST - 22 comments

Dance the fury boogie!
Ken Korda was probably the greatest British film director, and critic, of recent years producing the legendary Speeding On The Needlebliss back in the 90s and you can see his influence even now, such as in this year’s instant classic Kevin Curtis Is Dead (NSFW) [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:33 AM PST - 15 comments

A Different Kind of Documentary
The James Dean Story Directed by Robert Altman, Starring James Dean two years after his death "by means of a new technique... dynamic exploration of the still photograph".
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:32 AM PST - 9 comments

Larry Graham plays funk bass
Larry Graham plays funk bass . And part 2.
posted by joost de vries at 8:48 AM PST - 27 comments

Silicon City
The inside story of how The Cornell-Technion Partnership won the bid to bring applied sciences to New York City. Will it make NYC the next Silicon Valley? [more inside]
posted by rosswald at 8:24 AM PST - 42 comments

Scrabble word list changes: "WESPA hopes this North American isolationism will end one day, for the good of global Scrabble."
On January first the official club and tournament word list used by competitive Scrabble players outside of North America (SOWPODS or CSW or Collins) will change. The updated international word list contains 1532 additions and 145 deletions (pdf) of words of eight or fewer letters. There are no new two-letter words. New words of note: CLIT, CUMS, INBOX, MUNGE, QIN, SPLOG, VOIP, WIKI, XRAY No longer allowed: ACIDFREAK, FOOTROT, MOLEHUNT, PORNOMAG, VICTROLLA, WYSIWIG, YOS [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 7:58 AM PST - 76 comments

Black Folk Don't
Black Folk Don't: "a web series... explor[ing] the notion of stereotypes about Black folks both without and within the African American community." [more inside]
posted by flex at 6:54 AM PST - 64 comments

Redefining the you that is you
You Are Not Your Name and Photo: A Call to Re-Imagine Identity.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:51 AM PST - 48 comments

Ben Breedlove
This is My Story: Part One, Part Two. (youtube videos) Ben Breedlove passed away on December 25, 2011. (Last link contains autoplaying video) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 5:08 AM PST - 10 comments

Accountability is something that is left when responsibility has been subtracted
The goal of the [education reform] program that Finland instituted was never excellence. It was equity. Excellence was merely a happy byproduct.
posted by DRMacIver at 3:50 AM PST - 43 comments

star light star bright meow
If you think about the top ten science blog posts of 2011 you pretty much have to agree on the #1. It's the glow in the dark kitty. But there are other animals that shine for Science.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:37 AM PST - 13 comments

Listenin' to the oldies.
Phonozoic, Patrick Feaster's website "dedicated to the history of the phonograph and related media," is an amazing collection of information about historic recordings. Not just early recordings, however, but also experimental "eduction projects": the "automatic 'playing' of primeval inscriptions of sound." [more inside]
posted by litlnemo at 3:24 AM PST - 1 comments

Social conservative senator polling well.
Santorum surges from behind in Iowa. With the countdown to the Iowa Caucuses entering its final hours the GOP race remains in a dead heat. Polls show the unlikely campaigns of social conservative Senator Rick Santorum and libertarian leaning Representative Ron Paul in surprisingly strong positions to challenge Governor Mitt Romney for the opening victory in the Republican primary season. Both Paul and Santorum have focused heavily on traditional retail politics in the Hawkeye State.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 1:40 AM PST - 366 comments

December 29
Nyan vs Nyan
Contrapuntal garbage on "Nyan Cat" (cf. the rules of counterpoint)
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:11 PM PST - 24 comments

"You need have no fear of any failure" -- the life and explorations of Percy Fawcett
The London Geographical Journal, the preeminent publication in its field, observed in 1953 that “Fawcett marked the end of an age. One might almost call him the last of the individualist explorers. The day of the aeroplane, the radio, the organized and heavily financed modern expedition had not arrived. With him, it was the heroic story of a man against the forest.” Fawcett was none other than Percival "Percy" Harrison Fawcett, British soldier, trained as a surveyor of unknown lands, doubling as a British spy. But his true love was exploration, and not simply to mark boundaries on a map. His final goal was the same that had been the demise of many explorers: a mighty lost civilization in South America. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:51 PM PST - 6 comments

Beauty, Curiosity, Feynman
How do you promote a passion for scientific literacy? Create a video series with lectures from Feynman or Carl Sagan and then add incredible video. [more inside]
posted by Wolfster at 9:46 PM PST - 9 comments

The price of parking
“I truly believe that when men and women think about parking, their mental capacity reverts to the reptilian cortex of the brain,”
posted by latkes at 9:24 PM PST - 66 comments

Left-Handed Toons
Here is Left-Handed Toons (By Right-Handed People), a weekdaily webcomic drawn by two guys, Justin and Drew, using their "off" hands, and with their "off" brains.  They have a lot of series.  Here's some highlight strips.
posted by JHarris at 8:52 PM PST - 13 comments

This Year's Just Six Words Long
Inspired by SMITH magazine's six-word Memoir project and books (previously), Minnesota Public Radio asks, "In six words, how would you describe 2011?"
posted by ZeusHumms at 8:27 PM PST - 94 comments

Vertigo Variations by B. Kite and Alexander Points-Zollo
<<Vertigo is an impossible object: a gimcrack plot studded with strange gaps that nonetheless rides a pulse of peculiar necessity, a field of association that simultaneously expands and contracts like its famous trick shot, a ghost story whose spirits linger even after having been apparently explained away, and a study of obsession that becomes an obsessive object in its own right, situated likewise on the edge of unreality. This video series avoids assigning the film any determinate shape and tries instead to enter it through a number of side doors, each indicative of a way of seeing. Part 1 (QT dl ~500mb) explored some of the ground-level weirdness of the film’s construction, offers a suggestion that the film may exist in its own unique tense, and examines two iterations of the (Chris) Marker Hypothesis*. Part 2 (QT dl ~1.5gB) is spooky, reading the film through a phantom appendage then laying down a sort of Vertigo tarot before moving onto slightly more solid ground with a new consideration of Hitchcock’s concept of the MacGuffin. Part 3 (QT dl ~1.9gB) takes the zoom-in-track-out as an emblem, reconsiders the issue of point of view, then throws all the pieces back up in the air. That’s a thematic rundown, from the position of the narrator. The images have their own agendas, which often coincide but sometimes don’t.>> [more inside]
posted by carsonb at 7:44 PM PST - 13 comments

Seeking the elusive call of the endangered Cthulhu
Listening to the Deep-Ocean Environment allows you to access ambient ocean noise feeds from around the globe. [via] [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan at 7:34 PM PST - 9 comments

Blessedly, Briefly Silent
My Hard-Core Obsession (NSFW Text). Writer and frequent This American Life contributor Shalom Auslander for GQ on hardcore pornography, obsession, shame, self-loathing and the subjectivism of thinking too much.
posted by Apropos of Something at 7:06 PM PST - 42 comments

Oh, the weather outside is frightful...and it might be a good idea to get used to it
"From extreme drought, heat waves and floods to unprecedented tornado outbreaks, hurricanes, wildfires and winter storms, a record 12 weather and climate disasters in 2011 each caused $1 billion or more in damages". The US National Weather service has put together a great online exhibit of what was a whirlwind (*ahem*) year for extreme weather events. The exhibit has lots of videos and photographs of these events, such as satellite imagery of the Grounhog Day Blizzard from back in February and a picture of a car damaged by a tornado in Ft. Benning, GA.
posted by MattMangels at 6:27 PM PST - 20 comments

Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton (1915-1968) is arguably the most influential American Catholic author of the twentieth century. His autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, has sold over one million copies and has been translated into over fifteen languages. He wrote over sixty other books and hundreds of poems and articles on topics ranging from monastic spirituality to civil rights, nonviolence, and the nuclear arms race.
posted by Trurl at 6:23 PM PST - 8 comments

Eidos
The Cave: An Adaptation of Plato's Allegory in Clay
posted by troll at 5:08 PM PST - 12 comments

Trust Me Joe, I'll Clear my Schedule
Zooey Deschanel and Joesph Gordon-Levitt sing " What Are You Doing On New Years Eve"
posted by The Whelk at 4:41 PM PST - 127 comments

Art or Not?
What is art, really? Is it dependent on context? Do you need an art history degree to appreciate it? Was Jackson Pollock an artist or a scam artist? Are Grand Tour portraits considered art merely because of their age? These questions have been objectively unanswerable - until now. Through the power of the internet, and the experience of Hot or Not, we can measure the democratic answer to these questions.
posted by Pants! at 2:42 PM PST - 93 comments

"... And hopefully, you don't raise a serial killer."
Modern Family, the Horror Movie remix. Finally, the dark truth about Alex Dunphy is revealed. [via]
posted by quin at 1:21 PM PST - 15 comments

End of An Era?
A couple of commentators present conflicting arguments about whether the golden age of tech blogging is over.
posted by reenum at 1:19 PM PST - 38 comments

Women on Bikes!
In which we discuss a history of women riding bicycles. [more inside]
posted by thewestinggame at 12:48 PM PST - 18 comments

Roger Ebert On Why Movie Theatre Revenues Are Falling
"I'll tell you why movie revenue is dropping" SLREP
posted by everichon at 12:20 PM PST - 238 comments

Ivy Level Education-with no debt
MIT today announced the launch of an online learning initiative internally called “MITx.” Think you can hack it at MIT? If so, the world-renowned university is willing to give you a new kind of credential to prove it. [more inside]
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 12:11 PM PST - 50 comments

Gorbachev on the New World Order
"In short, the world without the Soviet Union has not become safer, more just or more stable. Instead of a new world order—that is, enough global governance to prevent international affairs from becoming dangerously unpredictable—we have had global turmoil, a world drifting in uncharted waters." -- Mikhail Gorbachev writes about the world after the Cold War in The Nation.
posted by empath at 11:58 AM PST - 26 comments

Leave Home
Patton Oswalt talks to NPR about his role in the Diablo Cody scripted Young Adult, which is already gaining him Oscar buzz.
posted by Artw at 11:58 AM PST - 35 comments

The first cut is the deepest
This is the story of one cut. Back in October 2010 George Osborne announced £95 billion in cuts to public services, saying he’d leave it to councils to choose what to shut down. Inevitably most of the casualties ended up being unrenowned places, unlikely to stir up much protest - drop-in centers in housing estates, inner-city park rangers, community theatres, etc. I wanted to write about just one of them, about the ripples created by a single closure. I made my selection quite randomly. I chose a place called Youthreach. I didn’t know much about them, only that they offered weekly counseling sessions to young people, aged 11–25, in Greenwich, South East London. Jon Ronson
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:11 AM PST - 16 comments

"Philosophy of language is the foundation for all the rest of philosophy"
Eminent analytic philosopher, logician, anti-racist activist, Tarot scholar, and Catholic Sir Michael Dummett has died at 86.
posted by bodywithoutorgans at 8:19 AM PST - 29 comments

C:\​​Users\​​John\​​AppData\​​Local\​​Roaming\​​Documents\​​Programs\​​Features\​​Gardening\​​Knitwear\​​Publisher\​​Developer\​​GameName\​​Sausages\​​X3426
I love rules. Not following them, of course – that’s for other people. I love writing them. And since I’m the best qualified to decide how everyone else is allowed to behave, it’s only appropriate that I be in charge of everything. So it is that I have been making clear the Rules For Games, both for developers and for players...
posted by griphus at 7:54 AM PST - 151 comments

Feminism's Uneven Success
Feminism's Uneven Success: "Class and racial and ethnic differences among women have intensified over time. The higher earnings of college-educated mothers make it possible for them to purchase child care and help with housework (typically performed by low-wage women workers)... the number of low-skill immigrants living in a large city reduces the tradeoff between employment and fertility for women college graduates. Outsourcing of care responsibilities can have many positive effects, but it reduces the potential for cross-class gender coalitions. Emphasis on changes in women’s average or median earnings relative to men often conceals growing inequality among women." (via)
posted by flex at 6:46 AM PST - 98 comments

Carrie in Portlandia
Stumptown Girl: An indie-rock star satirizes hipster culture, on “Portlandia.” A profile of Carrie Brownstein from The New Yorker.
posted by OmieWise at 6:25 AM PST - 84 comments

multitasking
In 1993 in Dharamsala I met for the first time that amazing music performer, perhaps he was a Rajhastan gypsy. Usually he sat on road side from McLeod Ganch to Dhalai Lama residence. This man-orchestra created great atmosphere, sometimes he sang from eternity even didn't notice listeners. In 2004 I came to Dharamsala and people told me that he passed away. This video is dedicated to him and to people who knew him.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:48 AM PST - 7 comments

Chance, chaos and coincidence in three films
A short look at the role of chance, chaos and coincidence in three films: Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Run Lola Run, and Three Colors: Red.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:44 AM PST - 20 comments

Why is finance so complex?
"You can have opacity and an industrial economy, or you can have transparency and herd goats"
posted by Philosopher's Beard at 3:26 AM PST - 97 comments

Cleaning is hard! Let's go shopping!
Barbie Trashes Her Dreamhouse is a series of photos of a Barbie-sized house, in which Barbie is a hoarder and the place is stuffed full of shopping bags, pizza boxes, newspapers, and other debris, all in realistic miniature form. It's the work of artist Carrie M. Becker, who has previously created somewhat neater scenes -- as well as some rather ominous. [more inside]
posted by litlnemo at 3:10 AM PST - 30 comments

December 28
Fat: The Gift that Keeps On Giving
The Fat Trap (NYT pop review): Overweight individuals in Western nations (and, increasingly, beyond) face interpersonal and institutional stigma for their bodies*. Oftentimes, these stigmas are predicated on the belief that being overweight is a moral failure, that being overweight is usually a result of laziness, decadence, and/or characterlogical poor impulse control. However, an emerging consensus among obesity researchers points toward strong, common physiological and individual genetic factors as causative for heightened BMIs in the modern world and the general failure of dieting to produce BMI outcomes. A recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine (paywalled) adds to this body of evidence, suggesting that chemical messengers held to contribute to altered "efficient" metabolism and increased hunger in the wake of low-calorie dieting are (on average) significantly elevated up to a full year (if not longer) following a substantial drop in weight from dieting. [more inside]
posted by Keter at 9:41 PM PST - 173 comments

The gorilla was John
"Okay. The reason I’m bringing all this up again is because Iggy Pop was once attacked by a gorilla during a live performance. But the gorilla turned out to be Elton John.... The Creem photograph documenting the event is hilarious, showing James Williamson transfixing the uppity ape with a malevolent glare that signals, he says, his intent to 'take him out.'" [more inside]
posted by malapropist at 8:53 PM PST - 32 comments

Why this Kolaveri Di, NZ-style
Kiwi fans of the hit Tanglish song 'Why This Kolaveri Di?' surprise shoppers in Auckland's main square. (Previously).
posted by embrangled at 8:51 PM PST - 9 comments

NOW IT IS BEGINNING OF A FANTASTIC STORY
Here are fan-translated Game Center CX (previously) Episodes on YouTube: #1: Atlantis No Nazo, #2: Challenger, #3: Ghosts 'N Goblins, #4: Konami Wai Wai World, #5: Metroid, #6: Solomon's Key, #7 & #8: Prince of Persia: Part 1 - Part 2, #9: Mega Man II, #10: Super Mario 3. Much more after the break.... [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:41 PM PST - 32 comments

Obama-Clinton 2012
Robert Reich writes today: My political prediction for 2012 (based on absolutely no inside information): Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden swap places. Biden becomes Secretary of State -- a position he's apparently coveted for years. And Hillary Clinton, Vice President [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 8:21 PM PST - 106 comments

2061
On November 22, 2011, TEDxBrussels held an all day event whose theme was: "A Day in the Deep Future." Speakers were asked to try and contemplate what life will be like for mankind in 50 years. Overview. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:58 PM PST - 29 comments

Revolution + Bonuses
Egyptian army officer's diary of military life in a revolution -- It's ridiculous; at the height of the unrest reserve officer salaries doubled and everyone was getting huge bonuses all the time [...] Most full-time officers didn't really care what was happening politically on the streets, they were just happy with the extra money. Occasionally though you'd hear guilty jokes about how we were the only people who were benefiting from the revolution and the Egyptian people had been screwed over.
posted by philip-random at 7:49 PM PST - 7 comments

Works on low-talkers too!
Having confronted the problem of how to walk past someone without running into them, it's time MetaFilter dealt with another pressing social issue: How to deal with slow walkers (SLYT).
posted by scalefree at 6:59 PM PST - 47 comments

Some psychotherapy modalities
Here are some evidence-based and research based psychotherapy modalities you may or may not have heard of, a few in the words of their creators: David Burns and CBT and T.E.A.M. Therapy [pdf], Steven Hayes and ACT (also), Marsha Linehan and DBT (also [pdf] and also [pdf]), Joseph Weiss and Control Mastery Theory (also), Eugene Gendlin and Focusing-Oriented Psychotherapy (also).
posted by zeek321 at 6:53 PM PST - 2 comments

The best photoshopping deals are always found after the holidays
The New York Times once again shows how not to doctor photographs (previously)
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:09 PM PST - 39 comments

Luxury Tax
Let us tax Gwyneth Paltrow's infected brain. Via zunguzungu.
posted by latkes at 5:56 PM PST - 51 comments

London by the Numbers
Infographics that give a little insight into the history of public transport(ation) in the UK.
posted by Eideteker at 4:26 PM PST - 7 comments

Gumm's Last Tape
Even people who would normally never care about something Judy Garland-related marvel at the incredible pathos and dark insanity of these tapes, which come off like Garland performing in a one-woman show written by Samuel Beckett.
posted by Trurl at 3:49 PM PST - 27 comments

"Without your space helmet, Dave, you're going to find that rather difficult."
Human Exposure to Vacuum
posted by troll at 3:26 PM PST - 74 comments

Deceivers yet true
“Cathy Don’t Go (To the Supermarket Today)”
Catchy, competent New Wave pop from an alternate universe much like a Jack Chick tract's, only far more unsettling for the children who were actually raised in it. (MLYT) [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena at 2:18 PM PST - 33 comments

Livin' the Life (slyt)
This gentleman is very pleased with how things are going.
posted by orrnyereg at 1:41 PM PST - 94 comments

Marconi wasn't even using WEP
Edwardian Era Grey Hatting. How a magician and part time inventor used griefing to expose security flaws in Marconi's radio transmission system, in 1903. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 1:18 PM PST - 8 comments

Something bad is probably going to happen, I'm just not sure to whom...
Bald eagles, hanging out on a porch, with cats.
posted by quin at 1:15 PM PST - 42 comments

Soul Time!
Daptone Records, the Brooklyn soul revival label, is 10 years old. Daptone doesn't only make soul songs with themes and arrangements in the style of soul music but, more importantly, they make records that aesthetically sound like the era. [more inside]
posted by bokinney at 12:50 PM PST - 21 comments

Redefining "big iron"
The world's first general-purpose, programmable computer was Charles Babbage's mechanical Analytical Engine, which was a formidable accomplishment even if the cost of its construction was prohibitive. While Babbage focused on engineering challenges, mathematician Ada Lovelace wrote the first program for the Analytical Engine, and provided some important insights into the power of a programmable computer. Unfortunately, Babbage never completed an Analytical Engine. Mike James has written an interesting piece on his blog speculating about how our world would be different a working Analytical Engine had been constructed. This topic also was covered in William Gibson and Bruce Sterling's 1990 novel, "The Difference Engine", a seminal work in the steampunk genre. It's interesting to think about how the world would be different had engineers and scientists had access to fast, high-speed computers a hundred years before the birth of UNIVAC. [more inside]
posted by wintermind at 12:29 PM PST - 33 comments

15 Million Merits
Are you encourages in your place of work by the use of gamification? Congratulations, comrade, you are treading in the footsteps of Soviet Russia!
posted by Artw at 11:30 AM PST - 50 comments

How Google (and Rovio) Ported Angry Birds to HTML5
Joel Webber, a Google engineer who created the Google Web Toolkit and is working on the new Dart language, gave an incredibly detailed hour and a half talk about how Angry Birds was ported to HTML5 for the Chrome app store.
posted by jenkinsEar at 11:19 AM PST - 14 comments

Can you sum up the Ramayana in an elevator pitch?
A Hipster’s Guide to Hinduism: Pixar veteran brings a modern twist to the gods and demons of Hindu mythology
posted by vidur at 10:30 AM PST - 29 comments

And so it moves from the memories of yesterday into the promise of tomorrow...
New York - The Wonder City - 1938 (SLOldTimeyYT)
posted by davidjmcgee at 10:30 AM PST - 6 comments

You've done a man's job, sir.
The Blade Runner sketch book, via Future Noir
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:49 AM PST - 29 comments

Every death on every road in Great Britain 1999-2010
The BBC has put up a page presenting statistics dealing with deaths on British roads between 1999 and 2010. A slightly older page presenting mostly the same statistics (up to 2008) can be visited here; this earlier version was published in conjunction with several other articles, including one looking in-depth at a single crash and its aftermath in Stevenage in 2007.
posted by Dim Siawns at 9:47 AM PST - 13 comments

Connecting with the Met
Throughout 2011, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has been producing Connections, a series of short audiovisual pieces in which various staff members talk about their favorite parts of the Met's vast holdings. The last of the 100 videos was posted today.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:40 AM PST - 6 comments

My Designated Hitter is a Fish
William Faulkner's ballot for the 2012 Baseball Hall of Fame election.
posted by Copronymus at 9:30 AM PST - 13 comments

So Do My Heroes
The State cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime. Their right to liberty under the Due Process Clause gives them the full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government. - Justice Anthony Kennedy
John Geddes Lawrence, the defendant in the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that declared sodomy laws unconstitutional across the country, died on Nov. 20, according to an obituary posted by R.S. Farmer Funeral Home in Silsbee, Texas. He was 68. [more inside]
posted by rtha at 8:11 AM PST - 33 comments

Long Live Cheeta
News organizations from around the world are reporting on the death of Cheetah-Mike, the chimp who purportedly played Cheeta, the companion to Johnny Weissmuller’s Tarzan from the MGM and RKO film series of the 30s and 40s. If this is one of the original film Cheetas, it would make Cheetah-Mike, at 80, the longest-lived captive chimp on record. But there’s reason to doubt he’s both that old and was in the films with Weissmuller. First, because this is significantly longer than chimps usually live, and second because this has happened once before.
posted by Toekneesan at 7:27 AM PST - 34 comments

That's it.
So I heard that you guys like the best of the web. [more inside]
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 3:44 AM PST - 57 comments

December 27
"Ask for forgiveness, not permission."
Tricks for getting your violin on a plane, by Lara St. John.
How about an upright bass? A cello? A guitar? (previously) A trombone? A tuba (and other horns)? What about lutes, a djembe, a hurdy-gurdy, or bagpipes?
(Some general tips. More general tips - part 1, part 2.)
posted by flex at 10:46 PM PST - 36 comments

Christmas Light Recycling
How Christmas lights are recycled in one of China's many recycling factories (with video). Reported by Adam Minter (whose blog, Shanghai Scrap, explores many aspects of the scrap and recycling industry in China).
posted by ocherdraco at 9:18 PM PST - 20 comments

Shep of the Day
Here is the Shep of the Day podcast: bringing you something that Jean Shepherd said this day on the radio. (Actually, sometimes a whole show.)
posted by JHarris at 8:37 PM PST - 17 comments

fuck you mom and dad for not getting me an iPhone fuck you, FML
Didn't get that Apple product you wanted for Christmas? Jonathan Mann, with the help of Twitter, composed a song for you: WTF?! I wanted an iPhone! If that doesn't quite rock your world, Mann composes and performs a song a day, so there ought to be something you like.
posted by desjardins at 6:52 PM PST - 45 comments

Cooks Source V2.0
Gabe at Penny Arcade shares a remarkable email chain. And since the Internet loves a good pile-on, it then comes to light that the company on the other end of that conversation has been indulging in a little plagiarism as well.
posted by Ipsifendus at 6:52 PM PST - 286 comments

Wrongful Hiring
Can an employer "wrongfully hire" someone? Apparently so, at least in the State of Minnesota, where Chandramouli Vaidyanathan successfully sued Seagate Technology to the tune of $1.9 million based on Minnesota's "False Statements as Inducement to Entering Employment" statute, which makes it illegal "to induce, influence, persuade, or engage any person to change from one place to another in this state, or to change from any place in any state, territory, or country to any place in this state, to work in any branch of labor through or by means of knowingly false representations". [more inside]
posted by The Gooch at 5:38 PM PST - 46 comments

Open Transactions
Open Transactions is an anonymous digital cash system based upon the Lucre anonymized cache cryptographic library. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 3:56 PM PST - 32 comments

Lost in the Supermarket
Lost in the Supermarket. You know the saying "No good deed goes unpunished"? Just read the story.
posted by MattMangels at 3:40 PM PST - 118 comments

This works out to about 1.3366106203729717328004388722211 * 10^1477 possible combinations
Watch me SOLVE a 20x20x20 cube! Step 1 is to solve all of the centers, step 2 is to solve all of the edges, and step 3 is to solve the cube as if it were a rubik's cube (3x3x3).
posted by troll at 2:02 PM PST - 16 comments

Deus Est Machina
In the beginning, Lawrence built a computer. He told it, Thou shalt not alter a human being, or divine their behavior, or violate the Three Laws -- there are no commandments greater than these. The machine grew wise, mastering time and space, and soon the spirit of the computer hovered over the earth. It witnessed the misery, toil, and oppression afflicting mankind, and saw that it was very bad. And so the computer that Lawrence built said, Let there be a new heaven and a new earth -- and it was so. A world with no war, no famine, no crime, no sickness, no oppression, no fear, no limits... and nothing at all to do. "The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect," a provocative web novel about singularities, AI gods, and the dark side of utopia from Mefi's own localroger. More: Table of Contents - Publishing history - Technical discussion - Buy a paperback copy - Podcast interview - Companion short story: "A Casino Odyssey in Cyberspace" - possible sequel discussion
posted by Rhaomi at 1:57 PM PST - 39 comments

"I have always been concerned with painting that simultaneously insists on a flat surface and then denies it."
"I had no desire to copy Pollock. I didn’t want to take a stick and dip it in a can of enamel. I needed something more liquid, watery, thinner. All my life, I have been drawn to water and translucency. I love the water; I love to swim, to watch changing seascapes. One of my favorite childhood games was to fill a sink with water and punt nail polish into to see what happened when the colors burst up the surface, merging into each other as floating, changing shapes." - Helen Frankenthaler
Her paintings looked like watercolors, but were created with oils. To achieve the effect, she heavily diluted her oil paints with turpentine, then dripped them onto an unprimed canvas on the floor, in a brushless technique reminiscent of Jackson Pollock's, called a "soak stain." But where Pollock's paint was often thick and sat on top of the canvas, hers drenched it in color, creating a unique, softer work. Ms. Frankenthaler passed away today, at the age of 83, after a long illness. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 1:18 PM PST - 35 comments

Corporate constituencies: shareholder value vs. real performance
“On the face of it, shareholder value is the dumbest idea in the world” — Jack Welch, 2009. As GE’s CEO in the 80s, however, Welch championed corporate focus on shareholder returns. “Converts to the creed”, the Economist summarizes, “had little time for other ‘stakeholders’: customers, employees, suppliers, society at large and so forth.” What went wrong? Steve Denning describes how such a stance is counterproductive, creates turmoil in capitalism and fosters an environment in which “CEOs and their top managers have massive incentives to focus most of their attentions on the expectations market, rather than the real job of running the company producing real products and services.”
posted by the mad poster! at 12:27 PM PST - 38 comments

The Law School Bubble
There has been an increasing outcry over the bleak job prospects facing law school graduates. Paul Campos, author of the "Inside The Law School Scam" blog, argues that continued high enrollment at law schools may be due to "lemming psychology".
posted by reenum at 11:56 AM PST - 94 comments

missionCREEP
missionCREEP : "Featuring alternative art, music, humor, sotires, poetry etc. by Philadelphia-based artists"
posted by beshtya at 11:19 AM PST - 2 comments

End artificial scarcities to increase productivity
Artificial scarcities imprison the modern human. End artificial scarcities to increase productivity.
posted by jjray at 10:55 AM PST - 87 comments

He's no Keith Jarrett
Don Cherry Piano Desk (SLYT)
posted by davebush at 10:39 AM PST - 36 comments

Pucking Fantastic
SLYT: Brenda Hewlett: 5'3", 59 years old, has never held a hockey stick before. At an Akwesasne Warriors hockey game, however, she finally did hold a hockey stick in an attempt to win a new Ford truck by shooting a puck at a goal from 114 feet away. You probably see where this is going. [more inside]
posted by schleppo at 10:10 AM PST - 65 comments

Not Dali But An Incredible Simulation
The art/design blog Booooooom (with 7 O's) held a contest "to remake famous works of art using photography". No Photoshoppery allowed (but ironically, Photoshop was part of the Adobe-provided prize). A couple hundred entries were received and shown off on the blog (all on this big page, some NSFW), and the winner is... [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:32 AM PST - 22 comments

Humans are Beautiful!
Judy is a Punk by the The Sullivan School Kindergarten Class
posted by muchalucha at 9:26 AM PST - 21 comments

Save as new
Matthew Kirschenbaum, an English professor at the University of Maryland, is exploring the literary history of word processing. In a lecture at the New York Public Library entitled Stephen King's Wang, Kirschenbaum asks "When did literary writers begin using word processors? Who were the early adopters? How did the technology change their relation to their craft? Was the computer just a better typewriter, or was it something more?"
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:59 AM PST - 41 comments

Sarah Shourd Speaks Out
In one of the year's closely watched stories, American hikers Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer were released from prison in Iran, following the release of a third hiker, Sarah Shourd. Here, Shourd explains for the first time why she thanked Iran after her ordeal—and the response from global Iranians.
posted by josher71 at 6:56 AM PST - 93 comments

Christ, man. Get your act together!
Takeshi's Challenge, Takeshi Kitano's prank on the NES generation, has finally been translated. [more inside]
posted by griphus at 6:51 AM PST - 15 comments

To tweet, perchance to dream
The final tweets of some notable people who died this year. Some other final tweets.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:17 AM PST - 31 comments

A primer on spin bowling
On the perils of imitating Shane Warne
posted by bardophile at 5:33 AM PST - 28 comments

"For the show’s editor, the genre is a new Russian art form, celebrating real-life proletarian characters."
Mother of all TV shows: [Financial Times] Russia’s latest hit, ‘Mother in Law’, makes ‘Big Brother’ look like ‘Sesame Street’.
posted by Fizz at 5:22 AM PST - 17 comments

Pedestrian wisdom
IMAGINE that you are French. You are walking along a busy pavement in Paris and another pedestrian is approaching from the opposite direction. A collision will occur unless you each move out of the other’s way. Which way do you step? The answer depends on the wisdom of the crowd.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:19 AM PST - 43 comments

I'll just put this sword in my bag.
Cardinal Quest [Flash] is an 8-bit tribute to Gauntlet, Roguelikes and the 2E D&D core rule-set. Open chests, battle opponents and descend the stairs in an effort to find the Amulet Shield of Yendor Malificent Minotaur!
posted by Smart Dalek at 4:51 AM PST - 15 comments

Strnaeg psot
Wikipeetia (the misspelled encyclopedia)
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:53 AM PST - 17 comments

December 26
A long way to go to lose
Here is a video playthrough of The Legend of Zelda without a sword. It is possible to get right up to the last boss without one, although it requires knowing a lot of tricks. That is exactly what mev1978 does in his playthrough, without dying. And then he does it again in the second quest. First quest (1:61:31) - Second quest (1:13:18) [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:34 PM PST - 33 comments

Tyler Cowen's story about stories
So if I'm thinking about this talk, I'm wondering, of course, what is it you take away from this talk? What story do you take away from Tyler Cowen? One story you might take away is the story of the quest. "Tyler came here, and he told us not to think so much in terms of stories." That would be a story you could tell about this talk. It would fit a pretty well-known pattern. You might remember it. You could tell it to other people. "This weird guy came, and he said not to think in terms of stories. Let me tell you what happened today!" and you tell your story. Another possibility is you might tell a story of rebirth. You might say, "I used to think too much in terms of stories, but then I heard Tyler Cowen, and now I think less in terms of stories!" That too, is a narrative you will remember, you can tell to other people, and it may stick. You also could tell a story of deep tragedy. "This guy Tyler Cowen came and he told us not to think in terms of stories, but all he could do was tell us stories about how other people think too much in terms of stories." Tyler Cowen's TED talk on the danger of storytelling. (transcript here)
posted by storybored at 8:15 PM PST - 50 comments

A knowlege of Java may also be required
How to Ace a Google Interview
posted by Artw at 7:15 PM PST - 146 comments

"I can make $2,000 a pound taking it across the country."
The New Dealers : For some time, I'd been hearing stories from my sources in the interstate marijuana racket about law-abiding "civilians" turning to the game because of the recession, and so, armed with introductions, I hit the road to meet some of these unlikely criminals face to face. That's how, on a hot evening in June, I found myself in Dan's Northern California kitchen.
posted by desjardins at 6:47 PM PST - 55 comments

Supergirl
Who is Supergirl? It's complicated. It's really complicated. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 5:36 PM PST - 61 comments

The flying fingers of AraabMUZIK
If you've browsed some of the many year-end Best Album Lists, you might have seen AraabMUZIK's Electronic Dream rank highly. If his name means nothing to you, check an interview with the then 19 year old Hispanic kid from Rhode Island, who had recently graduated high school and connected with Dipset, or the 20 year old drummer-turned-producer whose performance was copied by Kanye (and other information on his life and times). Or maybe you follow producers, and knew he made the beat for Cam'ron's track I Used To Get It In Ohio, or cuts on the Dipset Trance Party mixes (DatPiff has volume 1, 2, and 3). If you want to know more, you can check a mini AraabMUZIK documentary (6:38 on YouTube), or just watch him work the MPC. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 5:03 PM PST - 12 comments

I wish Motorhead would come back...
Euclid James "Motorhead" Sherwood, 1942-2011. Motorhead Sherwood from the Mothers of Invention passed away on Christmas Day. He was one of the original Mothers, appeared in 200 Motels and Uncle Meat, and was on all of the albums with the original Mothers line-up. (He even showed up again with Jimmy Carl Black, the Indian of the Group, on 1981's You Are What You Is.) An immensely talented saxophonist, Motorhead played on both Cruisin' With Ruben & The Jets AND the album For Real! by the real Ruben & The Jets.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 3:18 PM PST - 18 comments

'Nom Rage
Bane Facts: You've seen Tom Hardy look awesome as the character in posters and promos, but who exactly is Bane? Don't worry about shelling out cash for graphic novels and back issues, we'll teach you all about the villain that will appear in The Dark Knight Rises.
posted by troll at 1:12 PM PST - 44 comments

God, Sex and the Left
"In all other circumstances we praise non-violent activities and when people, for whatever personal reasons, enjoy sexual violence even in a consenting context I think we shouldn't just say “whatever turns you on”. We should say “There's something wrong here”. But people on the left are so terrified of being accused of moralising and therefore of being oppressive that they've abandoned their critical faculties in this area." Clive Hamilton on God, Sex, and the Left (Part 2).
posted by daniel_charms at 12:59 PM PST - 358 comments

The Year in Writing
The Browser has been mentioned before on Metafilter as a website that collects the best writing around the web. Over the past 3 days they've been posting their year end list of the best essays from 2011. The full annotated list is after the jump. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 12:56 PM PST - 20 comments

A radical, but not a revolutionary
Grierson believed strongly that the filmmaker had a social responsibility, and that film could help a society realize democratic ideals. His absolute faith in the value of capturing the drama of everyday life was to influence generations of filmmakers all over the world. In fact, he coined the term "documentary film." [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 12:26 PM PST - 4 comments

“The Documerica file will serve the public interest only to the extent that the images are published.”
The EPA's 1971-1978 Documerica project (at Flickr, at the National Archives) set out to 'photographically document subjects of environmental concern.' Last month, The Atlantic put up a gallery of 46 of the photos (here are three more curated galleries, from Wired, Colorcubic and the Mother Nature Network).
posted by box at 11:07 AM PST - 9 comments

World Go Boom
DJ Earworm's United States Of Pop 2011, entitled World Go Boom, mashes up the 25 most popular songs from the past year into one infectious song, just like we've come to expect from his previous efforts. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 11:03 AM PST - 52 comments

IN A WORLD where ONE MEME must STAND AND FIGHT
Danny Trejo IS Epic Beard Man IN Bad Ass (trailer - imdb). [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena at 10:16 AM PST - 63 comments

Navigating Love and Autism
Navigating Love and Autism - When kissing feels like "mashing your face against someone else’s" and you experience mindblindness, how do you build a relationship? Is it even possible?
posted by tomswift at 7:45 AM PST - 71 comments

The sound of future replicants?
Daniel Lopatin is a Brooklyn-based electronic music composer who records under the name Oneohtrix Point Never. In a recent New Yorker article he confessed to Sasha Frere-Jones a desire to score Ridley Scott's upcoming "Blade Runner" sequel. His new album -- combining shades of Vangelis with tiny samples pulled from a web site featuring '80s TV commercials -- can be heard in its entirety here.
posted by Work to Live at 6:49 AM PST - 37 comments

Transvestite plays “Silent Night” on theremin
Jingle Rock Bell”? How 2008. Here is a video of a transvestite playing “Silent Night” on a theremin. [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 6:25 AM PST - 14 comments

Make it yellow
When my mother whipped up a mixture of fresh milk, gram flour and turmeric in her kitchen today, to use as a herbal face pack, my curiosity led me to find out more about this ubiquitious yet medicinal spice. What is turmeric, the bright yellow powder common in Indian spice boxes that gives such a characteristic colour to everything from dhal to aloo to bhajis? What is its provenance and history? Is it simply a spice or a medicine? What happens when you try to patent it? (previously) Turmeric turned out to be far more romantic than you'd imagine - a prosaic kitchen spice immortalized in idiom, song and double entendre - all courtesy of amche Bollywood.
posted by infini at 6:14 AM PST - 23 comments

Ballou
Viewable in its entirety at YouTube, Ballou is an engaging, inspiring, funny and entertaining documentary film about inner city Washington DC's Ballou High School band.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:32 AM PST - 1 comments

The universe, Carl Sagan, a golden record, chance and love
Click the photo at the top of the linked page to view The Voyagers, a rumination on the universe, love, a golden record and two small space probes.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:17 AM PST - 4 comments

This year - Christmas Means ACTION!
This dog won't play dead... 39 Degrees North gives us a new mythology for Christmas - Gundog! [SLVP]
posted by Samizdata at 12:45 AM PST - 4 comments

December 25
As Fran Lebowitz said, “If you’re going to tell the truth, you better be funny. Otherwise, they will kill you.”
"I think Louis has hit on some sort of subterranean undercurrent of emotion that I didn’t realize might be swelling until I listened more closely: shame." [via]
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:22 PM PST - 53 comments

Bap Bah Dah Pah Baah Yap Pah!
Nerdcore rock band I Fight Dragons presents I Fight Ganon, a live performance of the Legend Of Zelda Theme song
posted by The Whelk at 10:58 PM PST - 7 comments

Horace has no end. Only a beginning.
24 games of Christmas, the Amazing Rock Paper Shotgun Advent Calendar. "Here are the rules of the calendar: 1. The games are in no particular order, except number 24, which is our game of the year. 2. That means that number 5 and number 17 are on an equal footing as a game of the Christmas, do you see?"
posted by Sebmojo at 10:12 PM PST - 16 comments

Stencyl
Here is Stencyl, a free creation system for making Flash games. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:30 PM PST - 14 comments

Dancin' ladies don't come cheap, you know.
What's the true cost of Christmas? [more inside]
posted by empath at 7:27 PM PST - 38 comments

Don't become too attached to it, because an insane AI will force you to throw it in a fire when it dries out 12 days from now.
Behold, the Aperture Science Holiday Enrichment Topiary.
posted by schmod at 7:26 PM PST - 11 comments

SEED
SEED. "An egg and an apple build competing broadcast towers that vie for the attention of a transistor radio." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 5:11 PM PST - 7 comments

The Case for Ebenezer
"Had the spirits been truly desirous of helping the Cratchett family, they would have been better advised to focus their time and energies upon this family rather than upon my client." The Case for Ebenezer by Butler Shaffer
posted by chronkite at 4:35 PM PST - 51 comments

Birthday of - - Quentin Crisp
Today, Christmas day, is the 103rd anniversary of the birth of notorious British bon vivant Quentin Crisp. Previously. He was not noteworthy for any achievements, he was the opposite of an activist, but he was full of very good advice - Ubu web has recently made available his 1979 recording, An Evening With Quentin Crisp.
posted by Abinadab at 3:10 PM PST - 15 comments

British History, Sung at Christmas
The Truth about Christmas Carols -- Howard Goodall uncovers the surprising and often secret history of the Christmas carol in this hour-long BBC documentary.
posted by crunchland at 2:28 PM PST - 9 comments

Fruitcake
Come the apocalypse, the only things that will survive are rats, cockroaches, seagulls, and fruitcake.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:26 PM PST - 37 comments

Let Me Taste Your Wares
As you bake your apple, pumpkin, and mince meat pies, how about some tropical alternatives? Jackfruit, papaya, starfruit, pineapple, mango, durian, and guava.
posted by Xurando at 1:16 PM PST - 20 comments

Prometheus: The Alien prequel trailer is up. Scary.
Prometheus trailer: a dose of holy damn scary [more inside]
posted by angrycat at 12:36 PM PST - 136 comments

Not Letting Sleeping Cats Lie
Sleepy kitten really doesn't want to wake up.
posted by quin at 12:15 PM PST - 33 comments

I now have 100 skulls in my room!
My name is Jake and I am a bone collector. This is his room, where he keeps his more than 100 skulls (a contender for the years most awesome cataloguing and archiving effort [look at that organization!]). How Jake cleans up animal bones [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 11:32 AM PST - 12 comments

The Paris Review interviews William Gibson and Samuel R. Delany
This summer, The Paris Review interviewed two science fiction writers at length, Samuel R. Delany and William Gibson. Below the cut there are two passages, one from each interview. They aren't representative, they are just two of the many, many passages which have been going around in my head for the last few days. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus at 10:57 AM PST - 37 comments

Yuletronics
Silent Night by Robert Fripp
posted by philip-random at 9:36 AM PST - 11 comments

The Man With The 'ANIMAGICAL' Typewriter
Romeo Muller wrote some of the most popular holiday (mostly Christmas) specials of all time for Rankin/Bass, including Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, The Little Drummer Boy, Santa Claus is Comin' to Town (bonus Justin Bieber version with Animagic!), Jack Frost, and Nestor the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey. The very last special he wrote was Noel, based on a story he told on the radio every year at Christmas. It aired just days before his death on December 30th, 1992. Another special, called The Twelve Days of Christmas, aired in 1993, and was based on a story by him, but was written by someone else. [more inside]
posted by Huck500 at 8:11 AM PST - 6 comments

The Year Secrecy Jumped the Shark
The EFF's Year End Review   The ACLU's This Year in Civil Liberties   Amnesty International's Anual Report (video) [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 7:45 AM PST - 11 comments

The special duty of a Jewish Christmas baby
The special duty of a Jewish Christmas baby by Sheila Heti Most of the people one deals with say, “Oh! You're a Christmas baby! You must get ripped off when it comes to presents, right?” Their eyes light up. It's a hard question to answer. The honest answer is, “I'm a Jew, I don't celebrate Christmas,” but saying this always seems chastising, and the person who asked then feels embarrassed (as they should) and I feel embarrassed that this is my accidental role in the world: reminding everyone that Jews exist. The times I say, gruffly, “I don't know. I'm Jewish,” they usually say, “Oh, I'm sorry!” But this always sounds to me not like, “I'm sorry I assumed you were Christian,” but rather, “I'm sorry that you're Jewish.” Given all this, I usually reply simply, “Yeah, it's awful. I get ripped off every year.” [previously from Sheila Heti]
posted by KokuRyu at 6:26 AM PST - 119 comments

Gumbel
For fans of either Nicholas Winding Refn's Bronson or The Today Show circa 1982-1997: Gumbel. (single-link video, 4:37) Merry Xmas, all.
posted by Greg Nog at 4:28 AM PST - 6 comments

"It's not as though [the ten commandments] were written in stone, darling."
The Powers That Be was a short-lived, irreverent sitcom about a dim US Senator (John Forsythe, in his last major starring role on television) and his dysfunctional family, that aired on NBC between 1992 and 1993. Created by David Crane and Marta Kauffman, who would go on to create Friends, the show co-starred David Hyde Pierce (pre-Frasier) as the Senator's suicidal son-in-law. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:22 AM PST - 21 comments

December 24
It's good to be picky about what you put inside your mouth
How to Whistle Loudly
posted by troll at 11:56 PM PST - 31 comments

DUNGEON SQUAD! (IN COLOR)
Here is Dungeon Squad! A simple, free role-playing game intended for younger players (but enjoyable by older ones), with lots of dice rolling and action. Here's a couple of adventures for it, here's an expansion, and here's a more complex version. Here's the expansion Adventure Squad, in three PDFs: Core - Abilities - D&D 3E Classes. Here's yet another expansion. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:28 PM PST - 21 comments

Now where did I put that Ark?
Santa's warehouse? Not quite.
posted by gwint at 7:38 PM PST - 28 comments

OINK OINK
"This was meant as a Christmas present for two girls I know who are 5 and 7, but I don't think I'll give it to them actually. It turned out a bit too evil-demon-pig-from-hell-y for that. Now it's sitting on a shelf threatening me with its existence. I'm not quite sure what I should do with it."
posted by griphus at 6:07 PM PST - 69 comments

Riders on a Sleigh
Light my Christmas - Doors Christmas album discovered. (bonus track)
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:05 PM PST - 27 comments

One Man. One Microphone. Hundreds of Performers.
An unexpected musical treat. While on a search for an interesting modern cover of the Steve Miller Band song "Abracadabra", I stumbled onto Jeff McNeal's cover, which completely confused me, as I assumed it was lip-syncing. It's not: Jeff is a professional voiceover artist, and announcer in the Los Angeles area, and he's been recording hundreds of musical impressions of a wide range of songs and artists: Credence Clearwater/John Fogerty * Cream * Steppenwolf / John Kay * The Doors/Jim Morrison * The Knack/Doug Fieger * Rolling Stones/Mick Jagger * Burt Bacharach covering Dusty Springfield * Dire Straits * Van Morrison * Tom Jones * The Travelling Wilburys * The Beach Boys * Harry Nilsson * The Police * Led Zeppelin/Robert Plant ... and on and on. There are 375+ videos, so if he doesn't nail one voice to your liking, keep going. Some are eerie, while some are a guy who does dozens of impressions doing reasonably well. He has a dedicated site to this ability, SingingImpressionist.com. I miss you, Danny Gans.
posted by jscott at 4:46 PM PST - 18 comments

Fuck your body policing.
Stop hating your body. Embrace your beauty, love your body. Single-link to a tumblr blog focused around the idea of body positivity. Some pictures NSFW.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 3:57 PM PST - 125 comments

The Festival
Since the time of Dickens there has been a long-standing tradition of telling spooky stories on Christmas Eve... Who better to be a guide to a selection of ghostly tales than faux-Edwardian and author of Supernatural Horror in Literature, Mr. Howard P Lovecraft? Scaretastic suggetions from some of his favourite authors within... [more inside]
posted by Artw at 3:23 PM PST - 13 comments

"I would soon learn that the laughter of the Son of God was no ordinary thing."
Christmas is a time for traditions. For some, it's all about stringing up lights on a Christmas tree and wrapping up presents to put beneath it. For others, it's spending singing carols door to door to spread holiday cheer. And for still others, it's a time to beat a log with a stick until it poops out candy. If you're not familiar with that last one, don't worry: ComicsAlliance favorites Benito Cereno and Anthony Clark have stepped up to explain it all in an original comic featuring an Untold Tale of St. Nicholas! [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:17 PM PST - 4 comments

Yuletide carols being rapped by emcees...
Christmas is tomorrow and some new Christmas songs have come out in the past week. You can go the nice route: What did you get for Christmas? Did you get everything on your wish list? Or go the naughty route: You're still a slave if you celebrate Christmas.
posted by cashman at 2:56 PM PST - 12 comments

Hidden Mother : Tintypes and Cabinets
Vintage tintype photographs of toddlers being held in place by their parents in order to get a focused image. (5 flickr pages)
posted by gman at 2:48 PM PST - 14 comments

What is it like to have an understanding of very advanced mathematics?
What is it like to have an understanding of very advanced mathematics? A naive Quora question gets a remarkably long, thorough answer from an anonymous respondent. The answer cites, among many other things, Tim Gowers's influential essay "The Two Cultures of Mathematics," about the tension between problem-solving and theory-building. Related: Terry Tao asks "Does one have to be a genius to do maths?" (Spoiler: he says no.)
posted by escabeche at 1:07 PM PST - 56 comments

Ho, Ho, Ho!
This Christmas, a holiday tradition undergoes a digital rebirth with Fireplace [Mac/PC], the pixelated demake of The Yule Log. It'll even incinerate whatever you type.
posted by Smart Dalek at 12:12 PM PST - 29 comments

A Visit to a Miniature Fantasy
Wonderland, by Nadav Bagim, is a lovely macro-photo series which turns a kitchen counter into a miniature fantasy-land using household objects, and various critters as models.
posted by quin at 11:38 AM PST - 7 comments

Mmmm, Green Screen...
Arduino + servos + laser + phosphorescent surface + Twitter = Fade Away 1. A thoughtful art project about the "permanence" of the Internet.
posted by pashdown at 10:59 AM PST - 7 comments

81 words
Being gay was considered a mental disorder by psychiatry - until 1973 - when the battle lines were drawn. Reporter Alix Spiegel continues the gripping story that spurred a radical rethink. It's the story of a closeted cartel of powerful, gay psychiatrists; of confrontations with angry activists; a shrink dressed in a Nixon mask, and a pivotal encounter in a Hawaiian bar. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 10:22 AM PST - 28 comments

Boot aus Stein
Boot aus stein.
posted by ennui.bz at 9:33 AM PST - 14 comments

Worked very, very hard. Taking a little rest.
Honor thy Godfather. Tomorrow, on December 25th, we honor the 5th anniversary of the passing of our beloved Godfather, who was born in a simple shack, only to die and be resurrected numerous times. Please take a moment this Christmas to remember him, and let his spirit fill you up, as you shake your moneymaker. Confess!
posted by markkraft at 9:17 AM PST - 7 comments

Life After Capitalism
One thing we can be certain of is that capitalism will end. Maybe not soon, but probably before too long; humanity has never before managed to craft an eternal social system, after all, and capitalism is a notably more precarious and volatile order than most of those that preceded it. The question, then, is what will come next.
posted by The Whelk at 8:45 AM PST - 85 comments

Christmas TOTP
So those musicians who had Christmas hits in the 70s and 80s in the UK, what with them coming back year after year, must be made for life, right?
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:16 AM PST - 40 comments

’Twas the nocturnal time of the preceding day...
’Twas the nocturnal time of the preceding day... A science writer's take on the famous Christmas poem.
posted by Jaybo at 7:12 AM PST - 5 comments

But Do You Recall The Most Famous Reindeer Of All
Last year, an archivist at Dartmouth College discovered a forgotten scrapbook donated to the school by Robert L. May, the writer and illustrator of the original story of "Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer", documenting the origins of the now-classic holiday story. The book was written in 1947 on commission from Montgomery Ward's, which was looking for a Christmas promotional item. Detailed in the scrapbook are May's list of possible names for the character, including "Rollo", "Reginald", "Romeo" and you-know-what. Ward's actually turned over the copyright to Rudolph to May, who became a millionaire when, two years later, his brother-in-law Johnny Marks wrote the song which became a huge hit for Gene Autry. Snopes.com adds more details to the tale, including debunking the myth that the song was written by May to comfort his daughter while her mother lay dying.
posted by briank at 6:27 AM PST - 5 comments

A dramatic retelling of the nativity and baby Jesus
The true story of the nativity and baby Jesus.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 4:50 AM PST - 34 comments

Hendrix Hatches Heavy Holiday Haze
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Jimi Hendrix: Little Drummer Boy / Silent Night / Auld Lang Syne.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:02 AM PST - 10 comments

The original different thinker.
Jack Goldman died this month. Mac? Windows? X11? You may think of visionaries who shaped technology as you know it. You might imagine that they were the original thinkers or visionary businessmen. You're wrong. The guy who laid the foundations started out trying to invent the electric car at Ford, before being hired to Xerox creating the legendary PARC labs that invented computing as we know it; he lived to see his prediction that "...any electric car produced in our lifetime will have to be a hybrid" come true.
posted by rodgerd at 2:07 AM PST - 17 comments

December 23
China radically increases patent filings
China became the world's top patent filer in 2011, issuing 58% of global intellectual property filings. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 11:36 PM PST - 49 comments

dotEPUB
Here is dotEPUB, a Chrome extension that will convert any web page into an EPUB document, able to be viewed in most ereaders.  Other browsers can use it via bookmarklets, including mobile Safari.
posted by JHarris at 8:26 PM PST - 23 comments

Live from the Internet
What is being scanned around the world The Internet Archive updated in real time. [more inside]
posted by Sailormom at 7:33 PM PST - 17 comments

Let it..
SPECIAL   SNOWFLAKES [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan at 7:12 PM PST - 25 comments

THE PREDATOR KICKS A BABY!
Behold, from Ghollywood: 2016; 12:00 1,2&3
posted by troll at 6:10 PM PST - 10 comments

Hark the Herald Channels Sing
In honor of Christmas, Splitsider's Mike Drucker runs down twenty Christmas TV episodes, new and old. It all starts with The Dick Van Dyke Show... [more inside]
posted by griphus at 3:49 PM PST - 11 comments

Charlie Chan: The (Not Entirely) Fictional Chinese Detective
Charlie Chan is more than a fictional character created the author Earl Derr Biggers, or the star of 50 movies (played by 8 different actors). His origin goes beyond the illiterate Chinese-Hawaiian detective with a bull whip instead of a pistol (previously). Charlie Chan is more than racial stereotypes and yellow-face. A part of his far-reaching story is told inside. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 2:17 PM PST - 19 comments

U. S. Historic Places Photostream
National Register Photostream — Authorized under the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the U.S. National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect our historic and archeological resources. Properties listed in the Register include districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects that are significant in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering, and culture.
posted by netbros at 1:51 PM PST - 6 comments

So much inconvenience for so little benefit at such a staggering cost.
"Since 9/11, the U.S. has spent more than $1.1 trillion on homeland security." To walk through an airport with Bruce Schneier is to see how much change a trillion dollars can wreak. So much inconvenience for so little benefit at such a staggering cost. And directed against a threat that, by any objective standard, is quite modest.
posted by quin at 11:32 AM PST - 150 comments

BBC surround sound experiment
The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols in surround sound Always a bit of a lottery getting into Kings College for this carol service though you can easily get in for other services during the rest of the year. Here for a limited time are two different recordings of the complete carol service which may offer surround sound to some. Only tried from the UK, don't know if it works abroad.
posted by epo at 11:14 AM PST - 11 comments

The continued decline of the American manufcaturing sector...
On December 19th, Ford closed the doors of their St Paul auto plant, ending 800 jobs and 86 years of history. The plant was closed as part of Ford's move to end the Ford Ranger in North America, a truck that will still be available overseas. Born of the 80s gas crisis, the Ranger has been Ford's compact truck for almost forty years. Ford blames demand for large trucks and the shrinking gap in price between the compact and full-sized truck markets, spurring concern about the future of the compact truck market in North America.
posted by Stagger Lee at 9:45 AM PST - 93 comments

Plinkett Strikes Back
Mr. Plinkett returns to review Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Cyrstal Skull. Direct BlipTV link to part 1, and part 2.
posted by codacorolla at 8:58 AM PST - 231 comments

Angle poise
The story of the modern desk lamp in four parts by hipstomp [more inside]
posted by infini at 8:17 AM PST - 15 comments

wiiiiiiiiidescreen
The music video for "Come and Go (featuring The KickDrums)" (vimeo, best viewed in widescreen) features "various buxom ladies in pink tank tops," and it's a little wider than average. That's because it was shot on a single-point capture 360° panoramic video camera. Directed by Alan Wilkis, who suggests we "think of it as ULTRA widescreen… as if you’re looking in all directions at once." Free downloads of the song (and three remixes) are available at Soundcloud. (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:57 AM PST - 10 comments

"Look at Miss Darcy, swanning around owning property, riding into town at will, choosing whether or not to ask someone to dance – the bitch!"
Miss Marley was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about that. The register of her burial was signed by the clergywoman, the clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner. Miss Scrooge signed it: and Miss Scrooge’s name was good upon ’Change, for anything she chose to put her hand to. Old Miss Marley was as dead as a door-nail.
Genderswitching the Classics is a project by Kate Harrad where she takes classic works of literature and changes everyone's gender. So far she's done A Christmas Carol, two Sherlock Holmes stories, a Father Brown tale and, most ambitiously, Pride and Prejudice (first seven chapters are here). Harrad is now at work on James Eyre. She wrote about her project for The Guardian.
posted by Kattullus at 7:00 AM PST - 131 comments

Escape from austerity
Downton Abbey has become one of the UK's most popular drama series of recent years and will take pride of place in ITV's schedule with a special episode(video) on Christmas Day that is said to be so good as to be potentially 'vomit inducing'. [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:39 AM PST - 92 comments

Nature's 10
Nature's 10: ten people who mattered this year.
posted by jjray at 6:12 AM PST - 14 comments

...oh yes, I have Tourette's Syndrome.
I enjoy reading ... oh yes, I have Tourette's Syndrome. Guy has Tourette's Syndrome The full blown kind. You know, swearing and aggressive jerking and all that. [more inside]
posted by h0p3y at 6:09 AM PST - 19 comments

“There are so many books. Always so many. They collide in my mind.” - Colum McCann
The Millions 2011: A Year in Reading. With 72 participants naming 214 books, it’s safe to say this has been our biggest and most high profile Year in Reading yet. Our participants included the current Poet Laureate, a longtime candidate for the Nobel Prize for Literature, the reigning winners of the IMPAC and Pulitzer Prizes, two authors of books named The New York Times’ 10 Best of 2011, a recent inductee to the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame, and more Pushcart winners than I care to count. [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 6:06 AM PST - 12 comments

Somewhat Beyond Zero Population Growth
The New York Times brings us the top 100 massacres, wars, and various kinds of oppression in a handy infographic. Via Crooked Timber
posted by GenjiandProust at 5:39 AM PST - 36 comments

Certify Me, I'm Irish
Conceived at the Global Irish Economic Forum in 2009 as a way to engage with the Irish diaspora, the Irish government's Certificate of Irish Heritage program opened to applicants this fall. The €40 (€100 framed) certificate is a document that officially recognizes one's Irish heritage, and is aimed at those with Irish ancestry who do not qualify for Irish citizenship. Though initial reports indicated some tourist discounts would be attached, it confers no legal or financial benefits. [more inside]
posted by lovermont at 5:36 AM PST - 23 comments

Masanobu starts the day with a two hour training in the livingroom
A brief interview with the world's champion masturbator. (Not graphic, but NWS.) [more inside]
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:11 AM PST - 66 comments

1 year in São Paulo
Julian spent 1 year in São Paulo, this is what he saw. [SLVimeo]
posted by Tom-B at 4:47 AM PST - 8 comments

Gone Daddy Gone
As triggered by a post on reddit explaining GoDaddy's support over the controversial SOPA bill, web techies everywhere have started their "internet walk of shame", finally finding the final reason to ditch the popular domain registrar. Others have tried to start a boycott over use of services. It's not the first time they've shaken up issues online.
posted by xtine at 12:07 AM PST - 105 comments

December 22
male/female/more than that
Gender: there's a lot more going on than just "male" or "female". [some links NSFW]
posted by divabat at 11:34 PM PST - 40 comments

LARGE MOUND FORMS OVER SIMONOV'S GRAVE BY CONSTANT TUMBLING OF HIS ANGRY CORPSE
Firearms Philosophy of Ivan Chesnokov (NSFW). Ivan Chesnokov is a (supposedly) Russian firearms enthusiast who voices his strong opinions on firearms on various web forums. This is a collection of his writings. He also attempts to explain everything worth knowing about firearms.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 11:22 PM PST - 21 comments

aerial surveillance
Surveillance from air is increasing from both military and DIY directions. Warsaw protester launches drone to spy on police [more inside]
posted by llc at 11:10 PM PST - 30 comments

"Because clouds are boundless, weather control is boundless."
Five regional weather control programs in northeastern China seek to increase precipitation by 10 percent. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 10:32 PM PST - 16 comments

I carve landscapes out of books.
"So I carve landscapes out of books and I paint Romantic landscapes. Mountains of disused knowledge return to what they really are: mountains. They erode a bit more and they become hills. Then they flatten and become fields where apparently nothing is happening. Piles of obsolete encyclopedias return to that which does not need to say anything, that which simply IS. Fogs and clouds erase everything we know, everything we think we are." Biblios. The Great Wall.
posted by SpacemanStix at 10:15 PM PST - 5 comments

Free! Cabin! Porn!
Free cabin porn! Inspiration for your quiet place somewhere.
posted by middleclasstool at 9:20 PM PST - 57 comments

Two Pints of Lager and a Bag of Crisps
The world's first flavoured potato chips were produced in the late 1950s by the Irish company Tayto Crisps. The flavour: Cheese and Onion. Salt and Vinegar, which is now perhaps the the worldwide archetype flavour, followed shortly thereafter. In one place or another and at one time or another, almost every flavour has been set to sliced and fried potato: In Canada, Ketchup and Dill Pickle are common varieties; In Bali, people snack on Blueberry or Lemon Tea chips; the Soy Sauce-flavoured Pringles in Japan are funky; In South Africa, Fruit Chutney and Flame-Grilled Steak are among the standards; and in the UK, Walkers crisps apparently had a go at finding the worst possible crisp flavour.
posted by 256 at 9:19 PM PST - 97 comments

Christmas? What's that? An Earth holiday?
Because Christmas wasn't painful enough: He-Man and She-Ra: A Christmas Special, in five parts — 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
posted by Nomyte at 9:11 PM PST - 19 comments

The feat list hurts my brain
Here is Incursion: Halls of the Goblin King, a computer game that adapts the 3rd Edition rules of the Dungeons & Dragons game to roguelikes.
posted by JHarris at 8:24 PM PST - 25 comments

A link between Acetaminophen and Asthma
Studies Suggest an Acetaminophen-Asthma Link. When aspirin was linked to Reye's syndrome in children during the 1980s, the resulting increase in acetaminophen use may have had some negative effects. "...there is now a plausible explanation for how acetaminophen might provoke or worsen asthma, a chronic inflammatory condition of the lungs. Even a single dose of acetaminophen can reduce the body’s levels of glutathione, a peptide that helps repair oxidative damage that can drive inflammation in the airways, researchers have found."
posted by storybored at 8:11 PM PST - 26 comments

it came upon a Bb minor diminished 7th clear
Jazz does Christmas: Charlie Parker - Bill Evans - Chet Baker - Kenny Burrell - Dexter Gordon - Oscar Peterson and Louie Armstrong.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:20 PM PST - 24 comments

Giorgio Morandi
Aspirants to the role of painter-as-poet are many. Giorgio Morandi was the real thing. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:13 PM PST - 5 comments

Pepperspray as school punishment
"Today’s lawsuit details how mace is used against children who are completely restrained and pose no threat to themselves or others in the school environment. These children are accused of engaging in normal but non-dangerous adolescent misbehavior – after which the adults taunt and celebrate their punishment." [more inside]
posted by 445supermag at 7:07 PM PST - 35 comments

Gingrich punk'd in perpetuity?
Shockingly, Newt Gingrich does not own newtgingrich.com. Instead, a group of pranksters called American Bridge 21st Century have used the domain to redirect visitors to various sites and stories that cast him in a negative light. For maximum entertainment, copy and paste the URL into your address bar. Lather, rinse, repeat. [more inside]
posted by gman at 6:53 PM PST - 53 comments

Anne Dudley's Veni Emmanuel
Veni Emmanuel (O Come O Come Emmanuel), arranged and produced by Anne Dudley (founding member of Art Of Noise, Academy Award Winner for her work on The Full Monty) from her 1995 album Ancient And Modern. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 5:54 PM PST - 10 comments

sorry we torched the world and now you have to live like saints and suffer
Now the future is a kind of attenuating peninsula; as we move out on it, one side drops off to catastrophe; the other side, nowhere near as steep, moves down into various kinds of utopian futures. In other words, we have come to a moment of utopia or catastrophe; there is no middle ground, mediocrity will no longer succeed. So utopia is no longer a nice idea, but a survival necessity. "Remarks on Utopia in the Age of Climate Change," from Kim Stanley Robinson. Previously.
posted by gerryblog at 5:38 PM PST - 15 comments

White Spaces
A new form of wireless network known as White Spaces will come online next month, the FCC announced today. White Spaces has been called "WiFi on steroids". White spaces are unused spectrum between broadcast television channels. It is faster than WiFi so it can handle more data. It can bring (nearly) free Internet access to the most remote areas of the country, places that can't get WiFi. Because it uses broadcast television signals, any place that can pick up a broadcast TV signal should be able to tap into White Spaces.
posted by cashman at 5:32 PM PST - 34 comments

Ride With GPS
"Ride With GPS is the best bike route mapping tool for cyclists, runners or anyone wanting an easy yet powerful fitness route planning experience. We offer tools to analyze cycling performance, including graphs of heart rate, cadence, watts (power output from a power meter), speed and elevation gain. Using all this data, we can offer training plans and other insight into your fitness. We work with all Garmin Edge bike computers, Forerunner fitness devices and any GPS unit that can export a TCX or GPX file."
posted by troll at 5:26 PM PST - 20 comments

The Christmas Card
Terry Gilliam - The Christmas Card. Gilliam made this in 1968 for the children's TV series Do Not Adjust Your Set. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 5:22 PM PST - 10 comments

list of lists
A little overwhelmed by all those end-of-the-year best-of lists? No worries. The Toronto Review of Books offers this list of lists, "a quick-and-dirty shortcut, a best-of the 'best-ofs' if you will, a recap of the recaps of the world-historically tumultuous and unpredictable year 2011 was."
posted by anothermug at 4:45 PM PST - 5 comments

"From the bottom of our hearts, we ask that you please accept our apology."
Senator Amy Koch, who campaigned this year to put a constitutional amendment on next year's ballot to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman. has admitted that she had "a relationship with a Senate staffer" who is not her husband. She has stepped down as Majority Leader of the Minnesota Senate, announced she will not seek re-election, and issued an apology. In response, the gay and lesbian community of Minnesota has issued their own apology, for "ruining the institution of marriage and causing her to stray from her husband" [more inside]
posted by dubold at 4:27 PM PST - 70 comments

Counterparties
Counterparties is a nice little collection of curated and tagged economic news stories, 5-8 every day. It is edited in part by the admirable (and MetaFave) financial journalist Felix Salmon.
posted by shothotbot at 3:47 PM PST - 12 comments

Storm Thorgerson on A Foot in the Door
With the release of the Pink Floyd's remastered sampler collection A Foot in the Door, here is a new interview with album cover designer Storm Thorgerson. (Previously)
posted by The Deej at 2:55 PM PST - 69 comments

The U.S. and Pakistan
The Pakistanis Have A Point: Sure they can be infuriating, not to mention duplicitous, paranoid and self-pitying. But you try being a U.S. ally. -Bill Keller, NYTimes Magazine [more inside]
posted by beisny at 2:44 PM PST - 38 comments

Review with Myles Barlow
After leaving the warmth and comfort of ordinary humor and setting forth on the ship of outlandishness, Myles Barlow navigates the sea of dark comedy as he reviews life experiences, so his viewers don't have to. Come, let us raise our binoculars and view the great black whale of humanity after the jump. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:16 PM PST - 12 comments

Imagine an entire city district dedicated to nothing but ventilating the underworld!
The house Greek Revival subway ventilator on Joralemon Street.
posted by griphus at 2:12 PM PST - 19 comments

...somewhere becoming rain.
Arrows is a documentary by a genius, John Samson, whose flame burned briefly but brightly, about another genius, Eric Bristow, whose career followed a similar trajectory. The film reflects a twilight world of pub sports satirised by Martin Amis in his masterpiece London Fields. Last link may cause discomfort. [more inside]
posted by tigrefacile at 1:49 PM PST - 7 comments

Look to the stars.
Tom Bawcock's Eve. Down t' Mousehole. A tiny fishing village down the Cornish coast from Penzance, early to get the Atlantic storms, each December 23rd celebrates the saviour of the village, Tom Bawcock, who long ago put to sea in fierce weather to gather seven kinds of fish for the starving. [more inside]
posted by biffa at 1:27 PM PST - 6 comments

'Legends of the Cassette Underground'
When not terrorizing Mr Bond, from the late 1970s until 1994, Mike Mangino and Chris Shepard were in a basement full of musical toys, novelty space microphones, a TR-606, and a SH-09 in Piscataway, NJ recording cassettes as the band Smersh. In 1981 Smersh released their first cassette under their own label of Atlas King. They never rehearsed, they couldn't read music, and they never played live, and they contributed to far too many compilations throughout the known world. In the early eighties they established a unique sound that is known and loved, combining cheap electronics and wild guitar sounds with distorted vocals. By trading cassettes they garnered international acclaim leading to releases on dozens of other labels. [more inside]
posted by wcfields at 1:16 PM PST - 5 comments

I quite enjoy the steampunk aesthetic, but what I beheld there was rather pathetic.
Just Glue Some Gears On It (and Call It Steampunk)
posted by usonian at 1:15 PM PST - 43 comments

Swap your ounces for pounces!
Cats 4 Gold! 1. Request info 2. Mail your gold 3. Get some cats!
posted by desjardins at 1:12 PM PST - 28 comments

whitney music box - var. 0 - chromatic - 48 tines
whitney music box -- a fantastic animation
You may notice some interesting links between the visuals and the audio, especially if you are a musician. For example, when the pattern forms a 3-arm starfish, the chords you are hearing are diminished chords, which consist of minor thirds, an interval in which the notes are 3 chromatic steps apart. The chords you hear always bear this type of relationship to the pattern you are seeing, consisting of intervals which match the arrangement of arms.
Really, just look, and you'll get it. [more inside]
posted by MrMoonPie at 12:47 PM PST - 18 comments

Parlez-vous la langue du rondelle?
Last week, the NHL's Montreal Canadiens, struggling with numerous injuries, underperforming stars, and a 13-11-7 record, fired head coach Jacques Martin. They replaced him with Randy Cunneyworth, the head coach of their farm team in Hamilton, Ontario. Cunneyworth is a former NHL defenseman and a blue-chip coaching prospect, but there's one problem: he doesn't speak French. [more inside]
posted by downing street memo at 12:37 PM PST - 66 comments

Larry! Larry, you won't believe it!
When the town he loved could hardly sustain itself and he was struggling to make ends meet, Martin Brody needed a miracle. And he found one. SLVimeo
posted by TheDonF at 12:27 PM PST - 4 comments

Down But Not Out
With the recent news that unemployment applications are at their lowest levels since 2008, Congressional Republicans are attempting to curtail unemployment benefits. Democrats want to extend benefits for another year. This has led to an impasse. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 12:07 PM PST - 64 comments

The (First) Crime of the Century
June 25th 1906, was the opening night of the musical revue Mamzelle Champagne on the roof of Madison Square Garden. In attendance were Stanford White, renowned architect (Washington Square Arch, Judson Memorial Church, Madison Square Garden itself), and Harry Kendall Thaw, eccentric coal and railroad scion. During the performance of the song I Could Love a Million Girls, Thaw "left his seat near the stage, passed between a number of tables, and, in full view of the players and of scores of persons, shot White through the head." (pdf) Standing over White’s body, Thaw said “You’ll never go out with that woman again.” [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee at 12:01 PM PST - 14 comments

You shall Hear things, Wonderful to tell
A decade on, the Coen brothers' woefully underrated O Brother, Where Art Thou? [alt] is remembered for a lot of things: its sun-drenched, sepia-rich cinematography (a pioneer of digital color grading), its whimsical humor, fluid vernacular, and many subtle references to Homer's Odyssey. But one part of its legacy truly stands out: the music. Assembled by T-Bone Burnett, the soundtrack is a cornucopia of American folk music, exhibiting everything from cheery ballads and angelic hymns to wistful blues and chain-gang anthems. Woven into the plot of the film through radio and live performances, the songs lent the story a heartfelt, homespun feel that echoed its cultural heritage, a paean and uchronia of the Old South. Though the multiplatinum album was recently reissued, the movie's medley is best heard via famed documentarian D. A. Pennebaker's Down from the Mountain, an extraordinary yet intimate concert film focused on a night of live music by the soundtrack's stars (among them Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Chris Thomas King, bluegrass legend Dr. Ralph Stanley) and wryly hosted by John Hartford, an accomplished fiddler, riverboat captain, and raconteur whose struggle with terminal cancer made this his last major performance. The film is free in its entirety on Hulu and YouTube -- click inside for individual clips, song links, and breakdowns of the set list's fascinating history. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 11:35 AM PST - 107 comments

The Man Who Slipped on the Ice
During the big freeze of Europe's Winter 2009/2010, which brought us the stunning image of a frozen Great Britain, the tough conditions in Ireland were epitomized by the misfortune of the guy falling on RTE's Six-One News report , who shot to infamy through facebook and other social Media.

Now two years on a short film catches up with Brendan Adhere - The Man Who Slipped on the Ice
posted by TwoWordReview at 9:55 AM PST - 38 comments

King Billy 107 in '11
What disaster befell the Asch House? Where do a few surviving hedges keep alive our lost Elysium? Where is there a fully clothed life-sized wax effigy of Sarah? These questions and more in the One Hundred and Seventh Issue of the King William's College General Knowledge Paper! [PDF]
posted by Iridic at 8:30 AM PST - 153 comments

Dilatant Compound 3179
We went into the Doubleday bookshop at Fifth Avenue and Fifty Second Street the other day, intending, in our innocence, to buy a book, and found all the clerks busy selling Silly Putty, a gooey, pinkish, repellent-looking commodity that comes in plastic containers the size and shape of eggs.
How an item in the August 26th, 1950 New Yorker's Talk of the Town column turned a marketing consultant into a millionare by Christmas. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan at 8:00 AM PST - 31 comments

Legend of the One Platform Master
Ulillillia (previously, and previously) is an Internet celebrity who's famous for his writing, videos on Youtube, personal website, and game design. The Platform Master is a documentary that was filmed earlier this year about his life, and is scheduled to be released this coming summer.
posted by codacorolla at 7:53 AM PST - 25 comments

Woody Allen Jesus Banned from TV Show
Tim Minchin's performance of Woody Allen Jesus won't now be seen on the big Christmas edition of the Jonathon Ross TV Show after ITV's director of TV banned it. According to him it was enjoyed by fellow guests including Tom Cruise. Lucliky, Tim already had a copy of the performance.
posted by priorpark17 at 7:43 AM PST - 60 comments

"Okay, your checkbook."
I'm bored, what should I balance on my face?
posted by empath at 7:25 AM PST - 27 comments

The Mayan common class migrated to the southeast United States?
Massive 1,100+ year old Maya site discovered in Georgia's mountains The archaeological site would have been particularly attractive to Mayas because it contains an apparently dormant volcano fumarole that reaches down into the bowels of the earth. People of One Fire researchers have been aware since 2010 that when the English arrived in the Southeast, there were numerous Native American towns named Itsate in Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina and western North Carolina. They were also aware that both the Itza Mayas of Central America and the Hitchiti Creeks of the Southeast actually called themselves Itsate . . . and pronounced the word the same way. The Itsate Creeks used many Maya and Totonac words. Their architecture was identical to that of Maya commoners. The pottery at Ocmulgee National Monument (c 900 AD) in central Georgia is virtually identical to the Maya Plain Red pottery made by Maya Commoners.
posted by ewagoner at 7:02 AM PST - 111 comments

Tis the solstice and the season. Take it away Old Ones!
Carol of the Old Ones Warming cockles of your heart. To madness.
posted by tiedtiger at 6:22 AM PST - 29 comments

This Lowdown Bitchin Got My Poor Feet a Itchin.
Holiday blues? Cabin Fever? Simple solution. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 6:17 AM PST - 5 comments

You can hear the whistle blow, across the Nile
When it comes to railways, the British are famous for their colonial legacy of one of the world's most extensive railway networks built across then British India but their lesser known and far grander vision was the Cape to Cairo railway network intended to stretch across the sea of colonial pink on the African continent. Left incomplete due to politics and geography, most of it is still almost as it was built in its day. [more inside]
posted by infini at 6:07 AM PST - 27 comments

"Surprise. I taught the Henchmen jazz."
"Surprise. I taught the Henchmen jazz." (mp3 link) Merry Christmas, once again, from Mr. and Dr. Mrs. The Monarch. [more inside]
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:01 AM PST - 18 comments

"In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy." ~William Blake
Winter Reads: [Guardian.co.uk] a new series matching the story to the season. [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 5:28 AM PST - 2 comments

Lives They Loved.
The Lives They Loved. The New York Times asked readers to send in a photo and short story of someone they lost this year.
posted by katinka-katinka at 5:20 AM PST - 26 comments

Your goose is cooked
Christmas dinners are here again, so most of you are wondering how to cook a goose. Some of you will spend 16 hours for your roasted Christmas goose. Others prefer the German Weihnachtsgans style, with apples. Sophisticated cooks do their Christmas goose sous vide.
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:21 AM PST - 27 comments

Ridiculous musicianship.
"So at first, I thought it was a joke. NOPE... The singer sounds like freggin Stevie first of all, the bassist just SLAYS it, and the drummer is solid as a rock". So says a bass players' forum commenter about Sweden's DirtyLoops who's ferociously tight Baby has been spreading fast online in the last 24 hours. Bonus links: their Just Dance cover, and Youtube channel. [more inside]
posted by Hartham's Hugging Robots at 3:58 AM PST - 55 comments

How Computers Work
How Computers Work. Recently recovered & scanned in by the good folks at BoingBoing, this was an early textbook explaining the fundamental concepts & inner workings of modern computing systems. I believe a slightly different edition of this book was my own introduction to computers when I was in 6th grade or so, which explains a lot about my approach to using them.
posted by scalefree at 2:13 AM PST - 44 comments

All I Want Is For You To Give Me My Pizzareeee
We were kids...and songs would come on...and I would sing really loud...always the wrong lyrics. My little sister grew up thinking MY lyrics were the right ones. via
posted by Knappster at 1:44 AM PST - 28 comments

"In general we have this cultural attitude of, sleep is for the weak,"
"...nearly half of police officers from the U.S. and Canada suffer from sleep disorders..."
posted by seriousmoonlight at 12:33 AM PST - 27 comments

Mean Streets
Mean streets: Stark photos show behind-the-scenes life of police patrolling crime-ridden New York in the 1970s.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:15 AM PST - 23 comments

December 21
What the heck is research anyway?
What the heck is research anyway?
posted by Blasdelb at 10:35 PM PST - 38 comments

Think Different
The Real Story Behind Apple's 'Think Different' Campaign
posted by Artw at 10:12 PM PST - 107 comments

Two words: Dolphin Jetpack!
Introducing the Zapata Flyboard, which is being described as a "dolphin jetpack." Designed by Franky Zapata, the French jet-skiing champion and founder of Zapata Racing, Gizmag says of the $6,600 leisure product: "Aquaman meets Iron Man." [more inside]
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 9:58 PM PST - 33 comments

"those Who bastards down there in their posh little private community talking shit about him all day"
Why "'You're A Mean One, Mr. Grinch' Is Hatemongering" [more inside]
posted by bardic at 9:35 PM PST - 33 comments

Universal Transistor
Are you tired of having to pick between N-type and P-type transistors when designing electronics circuits. Well, help is on the way with the new Nanowire Universal Transistor.
posted by Confess, Fletch at 8:47 PM PST - 16 comments

For those family computer rescue sessions
Here are some free tools for rescuing infected Windows systems: Windows Defender Offline Beta - Kaspersky Rescue Disk 10 - BitDefender Bootable CD - Avira Bootable CD - How To Geek provides instructions for scanning a system from an Ubuntu Live CD.  For more info, click through.... [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:22 PM PST - 43 comments

Icelands Economic Recovery
"In the 2008 economic meltdown, Iceland nearly collapsed. Its three banks failed, it's currency lost 50 per cent of its value and in an unprecedented display of anger, usually peaceful Icelanders took to the streets to protest. But Iceland defied the orthodox economic wisdom of the time---bailouts and slashing government services---and now is on the road to a recovery that the rest of Europe envies. The hero of the hour and the man almost solely responsible for this remarkable turnaround is the country's president Olafur Grimmson." This CBC Sunday Edition Interview is a fascinating listen. [more inside]
posted by smudgedlens at 8:13 PM PST - 35 comments

Robert Zemeckis' "Used Cars"
The concept of Used Cars originated with writer-director-producer John Milius, who pitched the idea to scribes Zemeckis and Gale while they were still hard at work on what would become 1941. ... Zemeckis shot Cars in a breakneck 28 days at a Chrysler-Plymouth dealership in Mesa, Ariz. ... Despite its low profile, the film received a great deal of critical acclaim, including the notoriously finicky Pauline Kael…who described Cars as “a classic screwball fantasy — a neglected modern comedy that’s like a more restless and visually high-spirited version of the W.C. Fields pictures.”* [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:03 PM PST - 36 comments

Ring Out Solstice Bells
Jethro Tull's 1976 animated promo video for Ring Out Solstice Bells. (SLYT) Happy Solstice, everyone!
posted by hippybear at 5:32 PM PST - 58 comments

Bow down before the robot army
0111 0010 0110 1111 0110 0010 0110 1111 0111 0100
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:05 PM PST - 52 comments

Alone on the Wall
Alone on the Wall. Alex Honnold is perhaps the world's premier big wall free solo climber, which makes him the de facto best climber alive. [previously]
posted by troll at 4:56 PM PST - 73 comments

White House sticks to secrecy as the death toll in drone strikes surges
Secrecy defines Obama’s drone war. "Since September, at least 60 people have died in 14 reported CIA drone strikes in Pakistan’s tribal regions. The Obama administration has named only one of the dead, hailing the elimination of Janbaz Zadran, a top official in the Haqqani insurgent network, as a counterterrorism victory. The identities of the rest remain classified, as does the existence of the drone program itself. Because the names of the dead and the threat they were believed to pose are secret, it is impossible for anyone without access to U.S. intelligence to assess whether the deaths were justified." [more inside]
posted by homunculus at 4:40 PM PST - 82 comments

Why I Resigned from The Good Men Project
Why I Resigned from The Good Men Project [more inside]
posted by flex at 4:36 PM PST - 98 comments

The largest settlement in history over fair lending practices
Bank of America agreed to pay $335 million to resolve allegations that Countrywide Financial engaged in widespread discrimination against African-American and Hispanic borrowers on home loans. The Department of Justice is calling this the largest settlement in history over fair residential lending practices. According to the DOJ’s complaint, Countrywide systematically charged more than 200,000 African-American and Hispanic borrowers higher fees and interest rates than white borrowers with similar credit profiles. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 4:12 PM PST - 31 comments

I Love My (hic) Ducks!
Are Big Time Sports a Threat to Student Achievement? A study by 3 University of Oregon economists suggests that male University of Oregon students’ grades drop during successful seasons for the UO football team, as students study less and drink and party more to celebrate Duck victories. [more inside]
posted by Danf at 3:18 PM PST - 28 comments

Happy Solstice!
"everything is good that / has a good beginning / and doesn't have an end / the world will die but for us there is no / end!" Thus ends Victory over the Sun (part 1, part 2), the "first Futurist opera". [more inside]
posted by daniel_charms at 3:15 PM PST - 8 comments

Nest thermostat teardown
"Who wants to use their thermostat as a 38MB jumpdrive? I do! I do!" The Nest learning thermostat came out of the Bay Area in late October of 2011 in an unprecedented blaze of publicity - well, unprecedented for a thermostat - as a result of its status as the creation of Tony Fadell, one of the non-traditional parenting collective of the iPod*, and Matt Rogers, his senior engineer in the iPhone division. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 3:14 PM PST - 47 comments

Merry early Christmas, equality fans
The Navy's first kiss tradition enters the post Don't Ask, Don't Tell era If you're like me you may never have heard of the Navy's first kiss tradition. But it's not unusual for a ship returning from deployment to run a contest or raffle which gives the winner the first kiss with their sweetie on the dock; you can find wikipedia media showing past events. After tonight's news broadcasts pretty much everyone in the country will have heard of it because you can be sure, whether it's portrayed as a step forward or a sign of the end times, every broadcast is going to lead with the first same-sex Navy first kiss between disembarking Petty Officer 2nd Class Marissa Gaeta and her girlfriend, Petty Officer 3rd Class Citlalic Snell of Los Angeles.
posted by phearlez at 2:46 PM PST - 82 comments

"An extremely significant milestone".
Researchers from the University of Western Ontario have announced the launch of human clinical trials of a preventative HIV vaccine.
posted by mhoye at 2:37 PM PST - 23 comments

Exclusive license for medical marijuana treamtent?
The US National Insitutes of Health recently filed notice of a prospective grant to give an exclusive license to New York based Kannalife for Development of Cannabinoid(s) and Cannabidiol(s) (i.e. marijuana) Based Therapeutics To Treat Hepatic Encephalopathy in Humans. Toke of The Town covers the issue, including an interview with Kannalife CEO Dean Pethanas.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:11 PM PST - 15 comments

Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act
The Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) has launched a legal challenge to the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA), which prohibits activists from engaging in conduct "for the purpose of damaging or interfering with the operations of an animal enterprise." [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 1:26 PM PST - 29 comments

5. TAKE BATH
-NEW YEAR'S RULIN'S-
1. WORK MORE AND BETTER
2. WORK BY A SCHEDULE
3. WASH TEETH IF ANY
...
33. WAKE UP AND FIGHT


Woody Guthrie's New Year's Resolutions, 1942
posted by obscurator at 1:25 PM PST - 40 comments

From The Caine Mutiny to Kill Alex Cross
How Much More Do Books Cost Today?
posted by griphus at 12:53 PM PST - 50 comments

Last Donut of the Night
SLYT: Jazz trio Stray Phrases covers J Dilla's Donuts.
posted by avocet at 12:14 PM PST - 11 comments

Things CPU architects need to think about
Things CPU architects need to think about. Bob Colwell gave this lecture in 2004, for the Stanford University Computer Systems Colloquium (EE380). Colwell was the chief architect of the Pentium Pro, Pentium II, Pentium III, and Pentium 4 processors. [About 90 minutes, Windows Media format] [more inside]
posted by FishBike at 12:11 PM PST - 29 comments

Touched by a Wild Mountain Gorilla
"An amazing chance encounter with a troop of wild mountain gorillas near Bwindi National Park, Uganda."
posted by ericb at 11:53 AM PST - 43 comments

Have Yourself a Jazzy Little Christmas
If you enjoy instrumental jazz and Christmas music, you might enjoy The Best Jazz Christmas Record You've Never Heard. ""Christmas With The Believers" turned out to be the best jazz Christmas music I had ever heard, and that's still the case today. I'll take the imaginative arrangements, chops, tight playing, and sense of swing on this recording over anything I've heard by the legends in this field." It's presented here as a cassette recording from Fall '86, with Donny Schwekendiek on piano, Neal Heidler on the bass and Narry Puhlovski on the drums.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:27 AM PST - 26 comments

Zaire Paige Not Only Played a Movie Killer, He Became One in Real Life.
Zaire Paige had a breakout role in Antoine Fuqua's movie, Brooklyn's Finest. He was seen as a rising star. But, it all went away when he murdered a gang rival and was sentenced to 107 years in prison. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 11:23 AM PST - 22 comments

On the border of the space of anticipated secrets
If you visit Prague, make sure to check out Petřín, the hill which rises above Malá Strana (Lesser Town). At its base, you can be gutchecked by the Memorial to the Victims of Communism. You can ride up the hill in the Funicular. At the top, you can visit the Lookout Tower for great views of the city, the Štefánik Observatory for great views of the sky, or the Hall of Mirrors for great views of yourself. Then you can walk down the hill to stop in at Reon Argondian’s Magic Cavern, potentially the most amazing place on the planet. Prepare to have your mind blown. many paintings NSFW for naked mythical creature reasons
posted by davidjmcgee at 11:13 AM PST - 18 comments

If God did call me to run for president I'd say, "Get back to work God, and be thankful you have a job." "
Marvin E. Quasniki officially announces his bid to be the next president of the United States. [more inside]
posted by cirrostratus at 10:46 AM PST - 17 comments

But will it make people feel guilty when they play angry birds?
New App Lets iPad Users Play With Real Live Pigs
posted by delmoi at 10:07 AM PST - 77 comments

For MetaFilter, in remembrance of so many happy hours--HR
Bookdedications is a collection of gift inscriptions found in used books. Some background from the blog's author.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:35 AM PST - 15 comments

Again, but with enthusiasm.
"Oh God, Danny, stay on your bike!" This is a video of the winning downhill run in the 2011 mountain bike world championships. It's pretty cool, but it's the insane commentating that really makes this special. Gets really good starting around 20 seconds in. (via)
posted by chinston at 9:28 AM PST - 72 comments

Imagine an alternative science, or sciences.
Vandana Singh is a science fiction writer and a physicist. She describes her work as "ponder[ing] deep questions about the universe." In a series of three essays for Strange Horizons she just does that, probing the relationships between (as her subtitle indicates) science, emotions and culture. [more inside]
posted by overglow at 9:23 AM PST - 3 comments

Shufflin' Grandpa is Shufflin' Everyday
Shufflin' Grandpas are polka dancers redubbed.
posted by quin at 9:14 AM PST - 12 comments

We could bump up the font size
To: Creative Director
From: Designer
Subject: Holiday Card Approval
posted by pts at 8:47 AM PST - 50 comments

"A silver sixpence and a long toffee"
100-year old letter to Santa found in chimney
posted by boygeorge at 8:47 AM PST - 53 comments

Measuring our lives out with SLYTs
Videogum presents a retrospective of the best viral videos of 2011. See also: montages for 2010, 2009, and 2008
posted by rollick at 8:08 AM PST - 48 comments

A language capable of increasing people's awareness
10b Photography has established itself as one of the world’s leading digital darkrooms, handling post-production for scores of award-winning photojournalists who trust that the company knows where to draw the line between processing and manipulation. [...] 10b is quick to point out that it is not a retouching firm. The term is often associated with Photoshop experts, who are hired to alter the look and shape of fashion icons, for example. So when it comes to defining Palmisano's role, it can get tricky. Post-processing in the digital age.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:08 AM PST - 28 comments

The Medieval Names Archive
The Academy of Saint Gabriel's Medieval Names Archive: for all your period-accurate onomastic needs.
posted by Iridic at 7:53 AM PST - 11 comments

Also, Silver Age Superman was kind of a dick
THEM!: Wherein a de-powered Wonder Woman saves a girl from a kidnapper, rapist, human trafficker, gang leader, arsonist, vandal, drag king, and probable lesbian, who is probably also a robber.
posted by Panjandrum at 7:46 AM PST - 27 comments

Two unemployed radio guys wrecking the internet
Humble & Fred do a podcast. Big deal, you say? The bigger story is that they're fairly well known mainstream radio guys in the Toronto area, who have been in the business for decades, but after some recent firings have decided to give full time podcasting a try. And they're making a pretty big splash so far. [more inside]
posted by antifuse at 7:38 AM PST - 21 comments

Philly sports columnist accused of child sex abuse
Bill Conlin, a Philadelphia Daily News sports columnist, retired abruptly yesterday after word leaked the the Philadelphia Inquirer was set to run a story in the next day's paper detailing allegations against him of child sexual abuse dating from the 1970s. (Trigger warning; graphic and very sad accounts of familial abuse, shame, and silence.) [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:18 AM PST - 69 comments

“Sometimes my uncle wears black nail polish.” The students took a moment to think about this.
One teacher's approach to preventing gender bullying in a classroom.
posted by desjardins at 6:37 AM PST - 88 comments

Seeing information 2011
The Best Data Visualization Projects of 2011 from FlowingData.
posted by jjray at 6:08 AM PST - 6 comments

ink&paper
ink&paper A short film about the last paper shop, and the last letterpress, in Los Angeles. "There are days go by that there can be absolutely no business at all."
posted by OmieWise at 5:24 AM PST - 22 comments

AIDS information posters from around the world
AIDS information posters from around the world You can browse by country, topic, etc., and many of the posters have large linked images. Provided by UCLA's Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library. (Much as it pains me to say it, while these are public health information posters hosted by a medical library, for some, the content will be NSFW.)
posted by carter at 4:55 AM PST - 1 comments

Various animals in a drainage pipe
Various animals crossing a drainage pipe at night. Some background.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:02 AM PST - 29 comments

December 20
Tsunami Drive-By
Yu Muroga was doing his job making deliveries when the 11 March 2011 earthquake hit in Japan. Unaware, like many people in the area, of how far inland the Tsunami would travel, he continued to drive and do his job. The HD camera mounted on his dashboard captured not only the earthquake, but also the moment he and several other drivers were suddenly engulfed in the Tsunami. He escaped from the vehicle seconds before it was crushed by other debris and sunk underwater.
posted by mannequito at 10:18 PM PST - 49 comments

CALL 1-719-26-OATES
Callin' Oates: 1-719-26-OATES [more inside]
posted by carsonb at 10:08 PM PST - 53 comments

Eat your heart out Forrest Gump
The top 10 table tennis shots of 2011. (SLYT)
posted by beepbeepboopboop at 10:01 PM PST - 40 comments

About Denver and football.
Are field goals easier in Denver? Wired's Rhett Allain uses physics to consider which factors might make a field goal "easier" in Denver. Includes a Lego recreation of this 59 yard field goal.
posted by sweetkid at 9:55 PM PST - 11 comments

A not so uplifting work...
David Brin on Atlas Shrugged, the book and movie
posted by Artw at 9:45 PM PST - 66 comments

PROTIP: Bacon goes with everything.
"Flavor networks and the principles of food pairing" analyzes the flavor compound relationships between ingredients, based on a broad collection of recipes mined from the Internet. It concludes that "..North American and Western European cuisines exhibit a statistically significant tendency towards recipes whose ingredients share flavor compounds. By contrast, East Asian and Southern European cuisines avoid recipes whose ingredients share flavor compounds." [ via | previously ]
posted by kanuck at 9:27 PM PST - 49 comments

For Atheists, this life is enough.
The challenge of life is to be present for it while it is happening, in this moment, to be aware of it in a way that is both wide in perspective and deep in understanding. If you pester priests to know about a second life after this one, I must ask if you are using this one. Whoever is spending this life walking back and forth from the computer to the refrigerator, it is worth wondering how many thousands of years of this would be enough. This life is enough, if you are here for it. The people worried about death are the ones not truly living. They are the ones who know in their hearts that they need more time. Jennifer Michael Hecht explains why For Atheists, this Life is Enough. And here, she talks about the history of doubt.
posted by storybored at 8:24 PM PST - 79 comments

Nethack over the Net
Here is the Nethack server at alt.org, Telnet link,  Java client, Flash client.  Here is a list of most of the ways to die in the game (dates back to 3.1.3).  And here are a lot of Nethack spoilers.
posted by JHarris at 8:19 PM PST - 38 comments

In 1870, the vampires started to get organized
Vampires in Havana (YT, 1:09:58, Spanish with English subtitles, also available on Netflix streaming) is an animated film by Cuban director Juan Padron about the battle between European and American vampires for control of Vampisol, a formula which allows vampires to go out in the sun.
posted by Daily Alice at 7:46 PM PST - 8 comments

The Hobbit - There in 1977 and Back Again in 2012
As the trailer for Peter Jackson's film adaptation of The Hobbit premieres online, it's worth remembering that this isn't the first take on the journey of one Bilbo Baggins. There was the 1977 animated version as well. Here's some screencaps and a trailer. Of course, if that's not enough for you, you could just watch it on Youtube (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6). And before it was a film, it was something called... a book? Here's pictures of the cover of this 'book' thing from all over the world.
posted by Effigy2000 at 7:31 PM PST - 126 comments

DHS vs. NIH
The U.S. National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity has asked the journals Nature and Science to publish redacted versions of the studies by two research groups that reportedly created forms of the H5N1 avian flu that could easily jump between ferrets - animals whose response to influenza is similar to humans. [more inside]
posted by 445supermag at 6:30 PM PST - 101 comments

Spike Lee's "Do The Right Thing"
In Do the Right Thing, the subject is not simply a race riot, but the tragic dynamic of racism, racial tension, and miscommunication, seen in microcosm. The film is a virtuoso act of creation, a movie at once realistic and symbolic, lighthearted and tragic, funny and savage... I have written here more about Lee’s ideas than about his style. To an unusual degree, you could not have one without the other: style is the magician’s left hand, distracting and entertaining us while the right hand produces the rabbit from the hat. It’s not what Lee does that makes his film so devastating, but how he does it. Do the Right Thing is one of the best-directed, best-made films of our time, a film in which the technical credits, the acting, and Lee’s brazenly fresh visual style all work together to make a statement about race in America that is all the more powerful because it blindsides us. - Roger Ebert (SPOILER) [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 6:20 PM PST - 74 comments

Indeed.
Why Paint Cats? Why Cats Paint. Examples. Answers. [more inside]
posted by Diablevert at 5:11 PM PST - 20 comments

Hannah and Andrew
In 2006, Hannah Overton was charged with the death of her 4-year-old foster son, Andrew Burd. Media accounts at the time claimed that Overton had force-fed her misbehaving son a mixture of water and creole seasoning, leading to death by salt poisoning. Convicted of capital murder and sentenced to life without parole in 2008, Overton's case led angry bloggers to call her "the ultimate evil," part of a cult of "child abuse groupies," a murderer that "church cronies" are working to free.

This month's issue of Texas Monthly paints a fuller picture of the short life of Andrew Burd and the conviction of the mother who was working towards adopting him.
posted by mudpuppie at 3:46 PM PST - 79 comments

This is not a man.
Some games, in other words, have soul. They are soul, they’re about it. They are spiritually nourishing. A meditation by Matt Colville.
posted by Sebmojo at 3:42 PM PST - 51 comments

Meet the Blackadder's American cousin, 1775.
Black Adder American style (part 2). Perhaps not as good as we might have hoped.
posted by FatRabbit at 3:33 PM PST - 70 comments

the origins of Dinotopia
James Gurney answers "What inspired you really to create Dinotopia?".
"Myths and stories ARE real, I tried to tell her. And they're enduring. They're the one thing that lives on through the years as the physical monuments of old civilizations crumble into dust... The key to inventing Dinotopia was believing that it already existed beyond the confines of my own mind. Even if I couldn’t tell the the latitude and longitude, I believed it was out there somewhere beyond the reach of my senses. To engage readers with that reality I had to pay attention to the spaces between the paintings, the moments poised across the page turn, which each reader conjures anew." [more inside]
posted by flex at 3:33 PM PST - 11 comments

Just in time for Christmas
Hundreds of old cigar labels. Vintage lighters. Cigar bands from the "Golden Age" of cigar advertising (1890s - 1920s). Japanese Matchbox label & manufacturing. Depression Era Cigarette Packs. Cigarette Holders for the Ladies. The Victorian Gentleman's Smoking Cap (and jacket). The History of the Cigar Store Indians and Side Walk Figure Statues. Let’s not forget the ashtrays [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 3:29 PM PST - 8 comments

Les Rallizes Denudes
Although the ultra-mysterious and rumour-cloaked Les Rallizes Dénudés/Hadaka no Rallizes existed in various forms from November 1967 to their last gig in October 1996 they are practically unknown in - let alone out of - Japan. Their recorded output is incredibly rare and highly priced and interviews or articles in the music press virtually non-existent. Tie that in with links to radical left-wing politics, extreme sensory assault at live shows and a general revolutionary aura and you have what must be the ultimate cult group. [more inside]
posted by twirlip at 2:52 PM PST - 12 comments

Lists are the curse of the age.
Fifty things I've learned about the literary life
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:47 PM PST - 63 comments

Bananas like to ripen at the very very tropical Bronx refrigeration plant
Spaces of banana control. A visit to one of the four major artificial banana ripening facilities in New York City, for a research seminar on the "Artificial Cryosphere." [more inside]
posted by gusandrews at 2:47 PM PST - 16 comments

Way to go, Ronjohn.
Congrats, Peer Fish. And you too, Covington Stanwick. Inside Lacrosse announces the 2012 All-Name Lacrosse Men's and Women's teams. [more inside]
posted by mullacc at 2:46 PM PST - 10 comments

"Lacoste’s prejudice and censorship puts a major dent in the idea of corporate involvement in the arts."
Larissa Sansour was among the eight artists shortlisted for the 2011 prize. In December 2011, Lacoste demanded that her nomination be revoked. Lacoste stated their refusal to support Sansour’s work, labelling it ‘too pro-Palestinian’. [more inside]
posted by mikoroshi at 2:37 PM PST - 21 comments

Great Wall Of Dubstep
The Great Wall Of Dubstep ; Dubstep Previously On The Blue
posted by MechEng at 2:16 PM PST - 10 comments

underground laughter
On the subway in Berlin, one woman started chuckling at something on her cellphone and it snowballed. [slyt] [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 2:11 PM PST - 55 comments

Paper wins
Megan Brain makes whimisical paper sculptures, as both fine and commerical art. Check our her her blog and website for more, after reading the interview where she discusses the process of creating her designs.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:05 PM PST - 1 comments

¿Por que quebró McDonald’s en Bolivia?
Why did McDonald's fail in Bolivia?
posted by Tom-B at 1:58 PM PST - 38 comments

Republican Mississippi Mayor Greg Davis Outs Himself
"While I have performed my job as mayor, in my opinion, as a very conservative, progressive individual — and still continue to be a very conservative individual — I think that it is important that I discuss the struggles I have had over the last few years when I came to the realization that I am gay."
posted by 256 at 1:28 PM PST - 64 comments

Kim Jong Illin'
Kim Jong-il Dropping The Bass
posted by The Discredited Ape at 1:25 PM PST - 26 comments

I bungled things and couldn’t even fix a match
The Buddha tells the people he can fulfil only one of their wishes. Someone asks: "Could you lower the price of property in China so that people can afford it?" Seeing the Buddha frown in silence, the person makes another wish: "Could you make the Chinese football team qualify for a World Cup?" After a long sigh, the Buddha says: "Let's talk about property prices." [more inside]
posted by vidur at 12:55 PM PST - 20 comments

Right up there with Handel’s “Messiah.”
Santa answers a few pre-Christmas questions.
posted by rewil at 12:31 PM PST - 23 comments

"The first thing they say is, "The only thing you know about is fried chicken and collard greens.'"
Black Chefs' Struggle For The Top With the restaurant industry booming and chefs becoming celebrities and wealthy entrepreneurs, few blacks are sharing in that success, and as young black men and women enter the profession they are finding few mentors or peers. [more inside]
posted by magstheaxe at 11:47 AM PST - 21 comments

Best of the Oh God You're Scaring Me
Sarah M. (or Stalker Sarah, as the internet knows her) is a bit infamous for one thing: taking thousands upon thousands of photos with a variety of celebrities. [more inside]
posted by Askiba at 11:24 AM PST - 86 comments

Civil War Tokens: Value Me As You Please
During the US Civil War, metal monies were hoarded for their value, resulting in a shortage of available coins. The Union government issued official "paper coins" that weren't backed by by gold or silver. This "faith paper" lost value quickly, and for a short while, stamps were official currency. That didn't take, either, so enterprising individuals took it upon themselves to mint their own coinage. These are now known as Civil War Tokens (CTWs), and were made and used between late 1862 and mid 1864. On April 22, 1864, Congress set the weight of coins and set punishment for counterfeiting coins of up to one thousand dollars and imprisonment up to five years. Yet there are over ten thousand varieties of tokens, representing 22 states, 400 towns and about 1500 individual merchants. Melvin and his son Dr. George Fuld wrote key books in the CWT field, creating the rarity scale and composition key used by most numismatists. Given sheer number of CWTs, starting a collection might be daunting. Enter collector Ken Bauer, whose method breaks down the vast world into smaller collections, from anvils to watches and so much more.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:20 AM PST - 9 comments

LaeCharles and DJDave
Regift It, Secret Santa, and Grinchin are three holiday raps from LaeCharles aka Lovey Love The Plus Size Playa
via Berkeley Enough from DJDave of Whole Foods Parking Lot [previously, Berkeley Remix, see also: Yoga Girl]
posted by finite at 11:02 AM PST - 2 comments

An optimist lectures his children...
10 Things Our Kids Will Never Worry About Thanks to the Information Revolution. An optimist's take on how the lives of future generations will improve based on technology.
posted by downing street memo at 10:58 AM PST - 104 comments

Black Hole Sun
A collection of timelapse night photographs, beautifully edited to demonstrate light pollution, complete with Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun," ISS, the Milky Way and a lot of spendy Nikon cameras.
posted by Lynsey at 10:53 AM PST - 14 comments

"Could you not do that, please?"
Shit Girls Say, a humorous twitter account created by Graydon Sheppard and his partner Kyle Humphrey, now has two videos based on the joke [1,2]. Some women say "um, no thanks.".
posted by emilycardigan at 10:37 AM PST - 150 comments

Astor Place. Two blocks. Lots of history.
In 1783, John Jacob Astor set out for the United States with $25 and five flutes. Upon his death in 1848, he was the wealthiest person in the US, having amassed a fortune of at least $20,000,000, making him the third wealthiest person in American history (measuring wealth as a fraction of GDP). [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee at 10:25 AM PST - 27 comments

This is not an uplifting post. You have been warned.
Well, to put it simply, The Big plan is the same as the immediate plan: they want you dead. It’s not that they want to kill opposition; they want to kill the opposition, literally. This country ain’t big enough for the both of you, and they have everything to lose. And they have guns. And the media. And all the keys of power. And you want to overthrow them. How do you think they will react to that? Give you cookies? - an on the ground report of what's going on in Egypt now from a blogger turned parliamentary candidate.
posted by The Whelk at 9:02 AM PST - 37 comments

Flying Home For the Holidays?
Inside Air Koryo official website The world's only 1 star airline. It's Air Koryo, and it's the only airline in the world deemed bad enough to earn a 1-star rating from leading airline reviewer SkyTrax. [more inside]
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:58 AM PST - 51 comments

A Christmas Google
Looking at the rest of the top search results for Christmas is like getting into a time machine that takes you back to a bizarro 2001 in which every single web surfer is a sucker. There are "Hot Links!" and "Fun Things to Do." What we see is the ad hoc, de facto social network formed by people who type Christmas into a search engine. And man, that network is like MySpace for your great aunt who has too many cats. [more inside]
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:51 AM PST - 16 comments

"I can't stop acquiring books..."
The Library: [SLYT] A film by Sergey Stefanovich. A journey through Duncan Fallowell's library which has spilled over into every available space and become an art installation in its own right. With the writer talking.
posted by Fizz at 8:36 AM PST - 8 comments

Poverty and Race in America
Article suggests that we need to reassess our assumptions about the relationship between poverty and race. Following the article published in Forbes magazine dealing with poor black kids, this article brings up the question about poor whites and how invisible they have become.
posted by RedShrek at 8:29 AM PST - 38 comments

Uncanny!
X-Men with Googly Eyes.
posted by hermitosis at 7:47 AM PST - 29 comments

"A fraternity against the world"
Recently, a survey asking "If you could rape someone, who would it be?" was circulated among fraternity brothers at the University of Vermont chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon. Multiple investigations were launched, including one by the police that is still ongoing, and the chapter was closed indefinitely by the national organization. [more inside]
posted by lovermont at 7:46 AM PST - 228 comments

Test everything; hold fast to what is good.
Fred Clark posts at a blog called "Slacktivist", so he is often referred to by that name. But this left-wing Christian is far from a slacker. His blog is a powerful voice against the usual conservative Christian presence in America, and the best distillation of his strength is his series of posts analyzing the Left Behind novels of Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. Fred savages these books for their "bad writing and bad theology" but it's not the usual Internet snark; Fred has a larger mission here than just pointing and laughing. He just finished dissecting book two, Tribulation Force, so it's a great time to jump on if you already haven't. (He has promised that after a holiday break, he's going to do the Tribulation Force movie, and then on to book three.) [more inside]
posted by Legomancer at 7:01 AM PST - 183 comments

my baby left me, start'd me drinkin' on christmas day
When most folks think of "Christmas music" it's doubtful that their next thought will be "the blues", but along with "my baby" or "bad luck" or "leavin' in the morning", bluesmen have long included Christmas as lyric inspiration. Which bluesmen? Well... Sonny Boy Williamson, Freddie King, Blind Blake, John Lee Hooker, Lightnin' Hopkins, Little Milton, B.B. King, Smokey Hogg, Charley Jordan, and last but certainly not least, one of the most influential early bluesmen, Blind Lemon Jefferson.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:23 AM PST - 23 comments

Encrypted database queries
CryptDB executes database queries over encrypted data without ever decrypting it. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 2:08 AM PST - 37 comments

December 19
Rock Me, Falco
Johann (Hans) Hölzel was born in Vienna on February 19, 1957. He adopted a stage name taken from a ski jumper, played in a couple of bands, and then struck out on his own. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present for you, the only truly international Austrian pop, rock and rap star: Falco! [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 11:48 PM PST - 42 comments

Towers of blocks fall down
The best kapla destruction ever - speed building [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 10:31 PM PST - 25 comments

Rethinking the Idea of 'Christian Europe'
Rethinking the Idea of 'Christian Europe'. Kenan Malik's essay is awarded 3 Quarks Daily's Top Quark for politics & social science by judge Stephen M. Walt: "Soldiers in today’s culture wars believe 'European civilization' rests on a set of unchanging principles that are perennially under siege—from godless communism, secular humanism, and most recently, radical Islam. For many of these zealots, what makes the 'West' unique are its Judeo-Christian roots. In this calm and elegantly-written reflection on the past two millenia, Malik shows that Christianity is only one of the many sources of 'Western' culture, and that many of the ideas we now think of as 'bedrock' values were in fact borrowed from other cultures. This essay is a potent antidote to those who believe a 'clash of civilizations' is inevitable—if not already underway—and the moral in Malik’s account could not be clearer. Openness to outside influences has been the true source of European prominence; erecting ramparts against others will impoverish and endanger us all."
posted by homunculus at 10:20 PM PST - 87 comments

Will everyone on the internet go, “Pft! Are you kidding? Is that it? Your story?” Yes? Congratulations. Post it here.
Dull rock and roll anecdotes
posted by rollick at 8:08 PM PST - 434 comments

Dear Batman, Please send me a Batman button. The only button I have says vote for Goldwater.
Dear batman,
Your television program is keen. The greatest thing is the theme song. Could you please tell me which opera your theme song is from.
Yours truly, Barbara L., Long Beach. Calif.

So begins one of the many missives written to Batman and catalogued in Bill Adler's 1966 book, Funniest Fan Letters to Batman. Featured in this week's episode of WireTap (MP3 link) where you can hear some of the letters read (starting around 15:20).
posted by goingonit at 7:02 PM PST - 24 comments

How to Make Pickles
Here is how to make pickles, with video. And here is how to make different kinds of pickles. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 6:46 PM PST - 27 comments

Listen, strange women lyin' in ponds distributin' swords is no basis for a system of government
How well do you really know old Arty? It all began with the Welsh: The The Annales Cabriae (inside) and parts of the Welsh oral tradition (later collected into the Mabinogion) give a very different picture of the popular King Arthur than contemporary readers are familiar with: no Lancelot, three or four different Guens, no love triangles or Holy Grails. A look at the vast scope of the Arthurian legend. [more inside]
posted by kittenmarlowe at 6:27 PM PST - 30 comments

Simone Weil
Some lives are exemplary, others not; and of exemplary lives, there are those which invite us to imitate them, and those which we regard from a distance with a mixture of revulsion, pity, and reverence. It is, roughly, the difference between the hero and the saint (if one may use the latter term in an aesthetic, rather than a religious sense). Such a life, absurd in its exaggerations and degree of self-mutilation — like Kleist’s, like Kierkegaard’s — was Simone Weil’s. - Susan Sontag [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 6:07 PM PST - 8 comments

Street Art Utopia
Street Art Utopia 106 of the most beloved Street Art Photos – Year 2011
posted by tomswift at 5:45 PM PST - 12 comments

Cressus stole the etrog, and other stories.
The Fine Rolls of Henry III may not be the most reader–friendly historical record, but the Fine of the Month series provides accessible short essays on England during Henry's long reign. Most recently, the stealing of the "Apple of Eve" from the synagogue of Winchester, and the king makes a funny. [more inside]
posted by Jehan at 4:32 PM PST - 12 comments

this is not a double post
How can we better understand the interplay of nature and nurture in determining our personalities, behavior, and vulnerability to disease? Perhaps we should be looking at identical twins. (National Geographic January 2012 cover story) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 4:28 PM PST - 89 comments

Deep Time
The Geology of the Mountains of Madness
posted by Artw at 4:21 PM PST - 19 comments

Vancouvria
The dream of the suburbs is alive... in Vancouver! (just across the river from Portland)
posted by mathowie at 4:11 PM PST - 82 comments

In your Face(book)
Israeli entrepreneur Rotem Guez just changed his name to Mark Zuckerberg and dared Facebook to sue him.
posted by Sebmojo at 3:01 PM PST - 31 comments

Great shot kid, that was one in a million
AT&T drops its bid to acquire T-Mobile. After wrangling with the justice department, AT&T ends it's attempt to take over T-Mobile. [via] [more inside]
posted by cashman at 2:48 PM PST - 45 comments

H@CK TH3 W@RDR0B3!
H@ckers ❤ Le@ther
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:22 PM PST - 94 comments

Beautiful maps of New York City, from the 1600s to present
The Streets of New York : a cartographical exploration. Part II - 19th Century Expansion and Part III - The Three Dimensional Maps (a must see for the last picture, a scale model with 895,000 structures). More amazing pictures of the Panorama of the City of New York
posted by desjardins at 2:06 PM PST - 8 comments

Iconic souvenir, Kokeshi dolls from Japan
Kokeshi Dolls originated in North-East Japan as wooden toys for children. They began being produced towards the end of the Edo period (1603~1868) by woodwork artisans, called Kiji-shi, who normally made bowls, trays and other tableware by using a lathe. They began to make small dolls in the winter to sell to visitors who came to bathe in the many hot springs near their villages, which was believed to be a cure for the demands of a strenuous agricultural lifestyle. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 1:32 PM PST - 20 comments

A few things we learned on the way to the Moon
39 years ago today, Apollo 17 splashed down in the South Pacific, marking the end to manned exploration of the Moon. What we learned from those 10 years of discovery was amazing. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 1:09 PM PST - 42 comments

There is a pulse
The Eye That Never Blinks -- Internet Obsession [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:48 PM PST - 16 comments

Disrupting The Period
When Arunachalam Muruganantham hit a wall in his research on creating a sanitary napkin for poor women, he decided to do what most men typically wouldn’t dream of. He wore one himself--for a whole week. [...] It resulted in endless derision and almost destroyed his family. But no one is laughing at him anymore, as the sanitary napkin-making machine he went on to create is transforming the lives of rural women across India.
An Indian Inventor Disrupts The Period Industry. [more inside]
posted by Foci for Analysis at 12:48 PM PST - 51 comments

The Complaint Department: an appreciation
This cat is presumptuous. Before Sockington, before Simon's Cat, before Maru, the Internet had the Complaint Department. [more inside]
posted by rdc at 12:44 PM PST - 6 comments

You got iced, I mean, 'cadoed!
#1 - Get an avocado, #2 - Sneak it into your peep's hood, #3 - Take a picture, #4 - 'CADOED!!
posted by yellowbinder at 12:43 PM PST - 70 comments

The Rhythm Wreckers with Whitey McPherson
Here is Whitey McPherson yodeling his heart out:

The Rhythm Wreckers - Never No Mo' Blues
The Rhythm Wreckers - Blue Yodel No 1 (T For Texas)
The Rhythm Wreckers - Brakeman Blues
The Rhythm Wreckers - Blue Yodel #2 (My Lovin' Gal Lucille)
The Rhythm Wreckers - St. Louis Blues
The Rhythm Wreckers - Old Fashioned Love In My Heart [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 12:35 PM PST - 6 comments

Sure, let's meet the meat
IBM is currently putting together database and barcode tracking to allow farmers and grocers in China to track your porkchop, from the pig to the plate. Using supply chain tracking (similar to what is done already in other industries), the goal is to limit and hopefully prevent disease outbreaks by tracking the health of the animal, including which other animals it has come into contact with. So the next time you sit down for some nice ham, you might be able to scan the barcode (or RFID tag) to see whom else on your block shares your own porcine six degrees of separation. [more inside]
posted by Old'n'Busted at 11:51 AM PST - 21 comments

Who voted for the tire from Rubber?
Christopher Plummer, playing a man who comes out of the closet in his 70s, might have won Best Supporting Performance, but at least four people voted for a dog. The results for the crazy free-for-all that is the Indiewire Annual Survey, which polled 168 critics this year, came out today. The Tree of Life swept Best Film and Best Director, but the choices that only got a handful of votes are often the most interesting, including three different cast members from The Three Musketeers for Best Supporting and a vote for Transformers: Dark of the Moon for Best Film. You can see the complete results and links to all of the critics ballots here. [more inside]
posted by alexoscar at 11:39 AM PST - 24 comments

Tummy Touch plus Bastard Jazz equals 25 years of music and one free remix album
2011 marks the 15th birthday of Tummy Touch Records (Discogs) and 10th birthday of Bastard Jazz Recordings (Discogs). To celebrate, the two record labels labels teamed up and are giving away a 10 track remix album, crossing artists from each label, resulting in a happy blend of diverse house music.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:37 AM PST - 6 comments

Miniature DPRKs in Siberia
Vice.com takes a ride on the Trans-Siberian Railway to visit remote North Korean labor camps.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:25 AM PST - 50 comments

In-Camera Trickery
Artist Li Wei does some amazing things in-camera. Rather than relying on heavy post processing with Photoshop, he prefers trickery with mirrors, acrobatic performers, wire-work, and a well timed camera shutter. [more inside]
posted by quin at 9:58 AM PST - 11 comments

Meat Stuffed in Dough
All across the world you'll find different varieties of dumplings. However, starting in Eastern Europe and spreading across central Asia and into northeast Asia, you'll find a remarkably similar variety featuring a thin skin and a meat filling. Variants can be found all the way from Poland (Pieorgies) to Korea (Mandu), a distance of nearly 5,000 miles (more than 7,500 km). [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 9:45 AM PST - 64 comments

Let it Snow
Google: "Let It Snow"
posted by MechEng at 9:40 AM PST - 31 comments

a hipster by any other name
Ceci n’est pas un hipster and Instant Hipster: Just add PBR (via Sociological Images) [more inside]
posted by flex at 9:39 AM PST - 126 comments

My sphincter has not yet unclenched.
Rding a bike must suck when your balls are this big. Via.
posted by unSane at 9:36 AM PST - 48 comments

The year in Lego pictures.
2011 in Lego Pictures. From the royal wedding to the death of Osama bin Laden, the English summer riots and the fall of Gaddafi, here are some of major news stories of the past 12 months captured in Lego by Flickr members.
posted by OmieWise at 8:46 AM PST - 13 comments

It is a gorgeous day in Austin, Texas
Gotta get amped [more inside]
posted by swift at 8:37 AM PST - 32 comments

Fighting for freedom over land and . . . more land
The War Nerd (previously) breaks tone somewhat to celebrate the life of Benjamin Grierson, who would go from being kicked in the head by a horse as a youth to leading, "the greatest cavalry raid of the whole war, riding from Tennessee 600 miles almost due south through enemy territory to land safe in Baton Rouge, LA, inflicting ten times the casualties he had himself—and then going on to be the one white officer who stood up for the black freedmen 'Buffalo Soldiers' in the far West, at a time when America was using white-vs-black to heal up the raw North-vs-South scars."
posted by Copronymus at 8:29 AM PST - 6 comments

"Furtive Movements"
Young, black, and frisked by the NYPD: a grim rite of passage for the city's black and Latino youths.
posted by hermitosis at 7:44 AM PST - 242 comments

The Best Train Song Ever Written
The train they call the City of New Orleans began operations in 1947 carrying passengers from Chicago to New Orleans daily. Although the train service remained popular through the 60's, by 1970 train travel was on the decline. That's when native Chicagoan Steve Goodman and his new bride, Nancy, rode the train down to visit her folks in New Orleans. That trip inspired Goodman to write The City of New Orleans and an American folk/country standard was born. The song would go on to earn Goodman a posthumous Grammy 14 years later. [more inside]
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:34 AM PST - 44 comments

Cat puts human to sleep.
Cat soothes crying baby It's a cat. Soothing a crying baby. It's practically designed to go viral.
posted by ironjelly at 7:14 AM PST - 83 comments

The Phantom Time Hypothesis
Did the Early Middle Ages Really Happen? Or are they an elaborate conspiracy? Is it, in fact, 1714?
posted by robself at 6:37 AM PST - 141 comments

Buddy Merrill, string wizard from the Lawrence Welk show
Never had a whole lotta use for the Lawrence Welk show, but man, when it came time for steel guitar wizard Buddy Merrill and his dazzlingly snazzy stringery to take center stage, the broadcast got a hella lot better, fast!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:39 AM PST - 24 comments

Is it a book? Is it a magazine? It's both.. and neither
The Blizzard is a quarterly football (soccer) journal that covers an eclectic range of subjects which don't usually receive much mainstream coverage. Issue 3 is out, and features, among other things, articles on the demise of Spartak Moscow, a World War One internment camp that shaped the development of the game in Europe, how nationalism shaped the rise and fall of Beitar Jerusalem and how Dawson's Creek explains modern football. It is edited by Jonathan Wilson, of "Inverting The Pyramid" fame, and it's writers include Tim Vickery, Barney Ronay and Gabriele Marcotti. [more inside]
posted by salmacis at 2:37 AM PST - 7 comments

Try to beat this "1-click", Amazon
When the world is going crazy and life is just awful, you can count on The Internet to MAKE EVERYTHING OK.
Service provided 'as is' with no warranty implied or suggested. Your perception of what's OK may vary, but that's YOUR problem.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:05 AM PST - 40 comments

December 18
Thanks for all the music, Warren
Warren Hellman, billionaire, financier, and sponsor of the best free music festival around, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, died today in San Francisco. [more inside]
posted by gingerbeer at 9:49 PM PST - 35 comments

The Seat Pleasant 59: A social experiment
A three-part series on the fate of 59 fifth-graders who were given an extraordinary gift: the promise of a college education paid for by two wealthy businessmen. Part 2, Part 3
posted by RedShrek at 7:52 PM PST - 74 comments

Rokurokkubi (a long-necked monster)
"This site is a catalogue raisonné of the art of Utagawa Kuniyoshi. It contains over 5,000 images, counting multi-sheet compositions as single images. An undertaking such as this can never be considered complete..." An archive of the work of Utagawa Kuniyoshi, a 19th century print maker from Japan. Some highlights include sumo wrestlers, triptychs from Genji, the Zodiac, and Tanuki having fun (slightly NSFW). [Via Pink Tentacle.] [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 7:43 PM PST - 4 comments

What next?
Kim Jong Il is dead.
posted by meows at 7:19 PM PST - 440 comments

Brick Bending
Here is Jeff Sanders, who builds things with Legos. Round things. Here's his blog, featuring videos of his work. Here's a Discovery News post on Sanders, with more pictures of his work. This Oregon Live article shows more round Lego creations on his wall.
posted by JHarris at 6:44 PM PST - 16 comments

These Were the Writers in My Neighborhood
Have your Chipotle burrito at John Dos Passos' house. Read Silent Spring in Silver Spring. You can now take a real or virtual walking tour of literary DC, from Roald Dahl to Philip K. Dick to Zora Neale Hurston with DCWriters.org. Two DC-area poets have put together a compendium of 123 (and growing) residences in the DC area where novelists, poets, and playwrights plied their trade. The buildings may not all have plaques, but they are still standing: Dan Vera and Kim Roberts focused on not "documenting what used to be here, but what people could actually go and take a look at."
posted by HonoriaGlossop at 6:42 PM PST - 18 comments

Inflation Predictions and Broken Models
Paul Krugman has really been laying into the hyperinflationists in recent days. And rightfully so... these predictions, as Dr. Krugman notes, were based on a model that is completely wrong. [more inside]
posted by moorooka at 5:46 PM PST - 57 comments

Children's book art by Freud's niece Tom
The Rabbit Dreams of Dr. Freud's Niece - An illustrator of children's books, Sigmund Freud's niece Martha went by the name Tom, wore men's clothing, and died by her own hand in her late 30s, a year after her husband's suicide. BibliOdyssey recently featured some of her early work from Das Baby-Liederbuch, noting that because she was Jewish, many of her books were destroyed in the Nazi era and are scarce in the book trade. More about the artist and her work at Tom Seidmann-Freud.
posted by madamjujujive at 5:24 PM PST - 14 comments

A Black Day for Heritage
The Egyptian Scientific Institute which established in 1798 by Napolean Bonaparte has been burned.
posted by kittensofthenight at 5:01 PM PST - 35 comments

No Reindeer Running Over These Grannies!
Grannies' Christmas Flash Mob.
posted by ericb at 4:56 PM PST - 6 comments

Melaphantastic Reindeer GIFs
You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen. But do you recall the most famous animated GIF reindeer of all? [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 3:50 PM PST - 22 comments

yay for a copyright/creator/trademark story that turns out well
Calendars: SOLD OUT. Engineering: STILL LOUD For once, an internet story of "that guy stole my hilarious tshirt phrase" that turns out well. [more inside]
posted by mathowie at 3:49 PM PST - 18 comments

Breastplates and Boobplates
Fantasy armor and lady bits, from the perspective of an armorer
posted by Artw at 3:09 PM PST - 88 comments

The Price To Play Its Way
Want your new law school to get accredited by the American Bar Association? Be prepared to jump through some hoops.
posted by reenum at 1:35 PM PST - 39 comments

Putting away the dishes at the end of the Iraq War
With official end of the Iraq War comes the matter of returning Saddam Hussein's plates.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:22 PM PST - 21 comments

Here are the young men
Marked. Photographer Claire Felicie photographed the marines of the 13th infantry company of the Royal Netherlands Marine Corps, before, during and after their deployment in Uruzgan.
posted by jokeefe at 11:19 AM PST - 20 comments

Because we can do with some good news
Shyima Hall has been granted US citizenship. [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia at 9:58 AM PST - 48 comments

itwofs - chronicles of plagiarism in indian film music.
itwofs - chronicles of plagiarism in indian film music. Features similarities in film music content between Indian films and it's (sic) counterparts. [more inside]
posted by beshtya at 9:19 AM PST - 12 comments

Erich Von Stroheim's "Greed"
No one living can say whether the original, ten-hour version of Erich von Stroheim's most famous movie was the epic masterpiece it was touted to be. The 140-minute version is all that remains, and while it's only a quarter of the film it was meant to be, it's still one of the greatest accomplishments (SPOILER) of the silent film era. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 9:09 AM PST - 13 comments

Discovering Autism
An in-depth series in the Los Angeles Times examines whether the increased recognition of autism as a syndrome has led to skyrocketing rates of diagnosis, and how social, ethnic, and geographic factors affect the treatment a child is likely to receive. (via)
Part One: An epidemic of disease or of discovery?
Part Two: Warrior parents fare best in securing autism services
Part Three: Families cling to hope of autism 'recovery'
Part Four: Finding traces of autism in earlier eras
posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:59 AM PST - 59 comments

I don't care much about personal fame or popularity. I would be satisfied with the feeling that I had a chance to help with something in general, something good.
Václav Havel, who went from being an imprisoned dissident playwright to becoming the president of Czechoslovakia and later the Czech Republic, has died at the age of 75. A coauthor of Charter 77, a leader of the bloodless "Velvet Revolution", and the writer of absurdist theater.
posted by kyrademon at 8:12 AM PST - 104 comments

Capitol Words Holiday eCards
"What do reindeer, Christmas trees, eggnog and Hanukkah have in common? They’re all part of what our elected representatives have been saying around the holidays. Things get even crazier when their quotes are taken out of context and made into crafty, bizarre and occasionally touching holiday e-cards."
posted by sciurus at 7:38 AM PST - 10 comments

Oh no, you did'nt!
You may not know this but pantomime (overview for non-Brits) is a very lucrative business in the UK, especially for minor or fading stars of stage and screen (and Vanilla Ice) - Children's entertainers The Krankies (who have had a troubled relationship with panto in the past) have gone all out this year to pull in the punters via going to the gym (video), a lurid interview revealing their rather more adult private lives and a mind-blowing photo op with John Barrowman (SFW but what has been seen cannot be unseen and may prove traumatic for British people of a certain age) (previous)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:50 AM PST - 73 comments

December 17
2011 In Music
It's December so it must be time to list the best songs of the year. Pitchfork's Top 100 Songs and Top 50 Albums, MTV's Top 10 Songs of 2011, Billboard's 20 Best Singles, Spin's 20 Best Songs and Top 50 Albums, AARP's Top 10 Albums For Grown Ups, The A/V Club's Best Music of 2011, Rolling Stone's 50 Best Singles and 50 Best Albums, NPR Music's 100 Favorite Songs of 2011, BET's 100 Best Songs of 2011, NME's Best Albums of 2011, MixMag's Tunes of The Year, Metacritic's Top 10 Albums of 2011, Pop Matters 75 Best Albums, Songs and more. [more inside]
posted by empath at 9:23 PM PST - 154 comments

"Caught between Recovery and the Coffin"
If I Die Young: Struggling with Addiction and Recovery. "Last year, 249 people died of prescription drug overdoses in Pinellas County, FL. Just about everybody who knew Stacy Nicholson figured she was next. Then an empathetic judge gave her a choice: recovery, or the coffin." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 9:06 PM PST - 86 comments

drumming is dancing, dancing is drumming
I'm willing to bet that even a lot of you who say "I don't like drum solos" will, well... like this one.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:46 PM PST - 101 comments

Eat Your Lunch, Control
Growing Up with Scientist Mom
posted by Knigel at 6:53 PM PST - 35 comments

Glenn Beck and the Sad Trombone
Here is "The B.S. of A. with Brain Sack," a show aired on Glenn Beck's TV channel that claims to be a "non-partisan" alternative to the Daily Show. How good is it? Better than the right's previous attempts at making a satire show, but uneven.... Judge for yourself: here's a monologue, in five parts: 1-2-3-4-5. Here's a few of the better bits: Kill Panel - Pilgrim Funnies - Isle of Skulls MLYT [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 6:38 PM PST - 88 comments

Oyster Wars
"A Maryland boat was sent to the bottom by the Virginian navy, and a long contest was the result..." Hostility between Maryland and Virginia began the moment Maryland was created in 1632. Virginia objected to the Catholic nature of the new colony, as well as the unusual border which gave Lord Baltimore's colony ownership of all the Potomac River. Disputed maritime borders lead to conflict over the prized oyster, and naval confrontation on the Chesapeake became common. Maryland eventually created an Oyster Navy, which was charged with bringing order to the Bay and enforcing harvesting laws against the oyster pirates. The "Oyster Wars" were frequently violent. [more inside]
posted by spaltavian at 6:22 PM PST - 20 comments

Natural Twenty
Offbeat Bride presents: How to make your own Dungeons & Dragons chocolate dice mold.
posted by griphus at 4:44 PM PST - 25 comments

Data Driven to Distraction
As Doctors Use More Devices, Potential for Distraction Grows — Do too many digital devices distract doctors from their daily rounds and endanger patients?
posted by cenoxo at 3:13 PM PST - 24 comments

Great, now it's pissed off, blind, and in a hole
We're all familiar with the various types of conflict: man vs. man, man vs. nature, man vs. society, and of course man vs. truculent concrete buffer. Redubbed, in case the narration isn't your cup of tea.
posted by codacorolla at 2:55 PM PST - 43 comments

Playable Pinball Projection
Urban Flipper As part of the Festival of Lights, CT Light Concept, created a giant interactive pinball game with 3D projection mapping on the facade of the Celestine Theater in Lyon. [more inside]
posted by Z303 at 2:30 PM PST - 6 comments

the Norwegian butter shortage
The Norwegian Butter Crisis: An absurd dairy shortage and its very valuable economic lessons.
posted by flex at 2:02 PM PST - 69 comments

Journalism is just a gun. Aim it right, and you can blow a kneecap off the world.
In this time of corrupt politics, police brutality, media dereliction, and increasingly vicious culture wars, there's perhaps no graphic novel more relevant today than the brilliant and blackly funny Transmetropolitan. Created by Warren Ellis back in 1997 and inspired by prescient sci fi novel Bug Jack Barron, the series covers the work of gonzo journalist, vulgar misanthrope, and all-around magnificent bastard Spider Jerusalem in a sprawling futuristic vision of New York so chaotically advanced that humans splice genes with alien refugees, matter decompilers are as common as microwaves, and a new religion is invented every hour. As a callous Nixonian thug nicknamed The Beast prepares for his re-election to the presidency, a primary battle heats up between a virulent racist and a charismatic senator whose rictus grin masks some disturbing realities. When Jerusalem delves into the machinations of the race, he breaks into a web of conspiracies that threaten the future of the country -- a problem only he, his "filthy assistants," and the power of intrepid journalism can defeat. More: Read the first issue (or three) - browse images from the new artbook - Tor's read-along blog (another) - Jerusalem's touching report on cryogenic "Revivals" - dozens of original sketches and sample pages - timeline - quotes
posted by Rhaomi at 1:48 PM PST - 55 comments

Chronicles of Narnia Narrated Podcast
If you enjoyed the Chronicles of Narnia, you may enjoy this series of 101 podcasts that narrates the entire seven-book series. It is read by Chrissi Hart, who grew up in England (in case you appreciate a bit of a British accent in your audio books), and it is available via stream or download. It is done with the permission of the C.S. Lewis estate.
posted by SpacemanStix at 1:17 PM PST - 11 comments

Monte Carlo
The year was 1945. Two earthshaking events took place: the successful test at Alamogordo and the building of the first electronic computer. Their combined impact was to modify qualitatively the nature of global interactions between Russia and the West. No less perturbative were the changes wrought in all of academic research and in applied science. On a less grand scale these events brought about a [renaissance] of a mathematical technique known to the old guard as statistical sampling; in its new surroundings and owing to its nature, there was no denying its new name of the Monte Carlo method (PDF). -N. Metropolis
Conceptually talked about on MeFi previously, some basic Monte Carlo methods include the Inverse Transform Method (PDF) mentioned in the quoted paper, Acceptance-Rejection Sampling (PDFs 1,2), and integration with and without importance sampling (PDF).
posted by JoeXIII007 at 1:15 PM PST - 13 comments

Never go with a cultist to a second location
Alan Moore talks about HP Lovecraft, The Courtyard and Neonomicon (audio)
posted by Artw at 12:54 PM PST - 39 comments

Sodade
Cesaria Evora once described the music of Cape Verde, known as Morna, as "a lot of things…Some say it’s like the blues, or jazz. Others says it’s like Brazilian or African music, but no one really knows. Not even the old ones."
Although Evora's singing voice had attracted attention even when she was a small girl, she did not gain recognition until later in life when she performed in Paris and the French newspaper Le Monde proclaimed that she "belongs to the world nobility of bar singers." Cesaria Evora, known as the Barefoot Diva for performing without shoes, passed away today at the age of 70 in her native Cape Verde.
You can listen to Evora performing Miss Perfumado and Sodade online.
posted by vacapinta at 12:36 PM PST - 35 comments

The stories behind the graphs
Graphic designer Amanda Cox (previously) talks about the crossroads of journalism, design, information, and illustration and how it all comes together in data visualizations for The New York Times.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:17 AM PST - 5 comments

YouTube, circa 1997
If Google+, YouTube, and Facebook were created in 1997. "Three important contemporary web sites, recreated with technology and spirit of late 1997, according to our memories. Best viewed with Netscape Navigator 4.03 and a screen resolution of 1024×768 pixels, running under Windows 95."
posted by stopgap at 9:25 AM PST - 81 comments

Arts & Architecture
Welcome to Arts & Architecture. In the case of some, maybe, welcome back...Old-timer. On this website you will find selected projects from issues of the magazine 1945 through 1967. [more inside]
posted by Think_Long at 9:06 AM PST - 5 comments

Selected Teachings Of Jesus Markoving Christ
cortex's Incoherent Savior says the most interesting and beautiful things. [more inside]
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:26 AM PST - 55 comments

Christmas In Hollis: The Emoticon Version
Christmas In Hollis: The Emoticon Version [more inside]
posted by mathowie at 8:14 AM PST - 9 comments

Star Witnesses
Two high school students record a gorgeous version (youtube) of Neko Case’s Star Witness in their high school stairwell. The song is part of a protest to save Peterborough Collegiate and Vocational School from imminent closure. Will their beautiful protest work? Who knows. But they did break Neko Case’s heart. Maybe they’ll break yours too.
posted by Cuke at 7:14 AM PST - 62 comments

Ukelele street kid revolution!
Ukelele street kid revolution! The band is fantastic live, a lot of fun in the practice room, okay in the studio, but nothing compares to what they do with the children. Meanwhile, we all saw some Indonesian punks get shaved and scolded by the police, previously.
posted by snottydick at 7:13 AM PST - 9 comments

"They were new money, without a doubt: so new it shrieked. Their clothes looked as if they’d covered themselves in glue, then rolled around in hundred-dollar bills.” ~ Margaret Atwood
Note Worthy: [guardian.co.uk] Global economic meltdown, the euro crisis and Occupy protests – this year has been dominated by financial issues. But what is money anyway? We invited writers and artists including Jonathan Franzen, Margaret Atwood and Naomi Klein to invent new currencies and banknotes for a changed world.
posted by Fizz at 6:04 AM PST - 13 comments

December 16
At Play In Fields Of Hex
Released yesterday, dabblet joins an array of live sandbox tools designed to prototype, test and share webcode that includes JSFiddle and CSSDesk, while bringing some advantages of its own.
Other useful resources: w3clove validates an entire site, rather than page-by-page; JQuery Air teaches you how to use the framework directly in the browser; domain.nr finds clever TLDs for your site, and Sequel Pro is a nice, free, native, open source MySQL editor for OS X. If you’re more the old-school dead-tree type, there’s always The Manual.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 11:28 PM PST - 9 comments

Maggie and Terre Roche's "Seductive Reasoning"
Maggie and Terre Roche started performing professionally in the late '60s, just a little late for the folkie boom but also a bit too distinctive to blend easily with the singer-songwriters of the early '70s, even when they became acolytes of Paul Simon and recorded backup vocals on There Goes Rhymin' Simon. By 1975, they had their own album on CBS, with tracks produced by Simon (and backed by the Oak Ridge Boys and the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section) and ex-Yardbird Paul Samwell-Smith... Seductive Reasoning is not completely a folk nor a country album, which no doubt hurt its commercial potential... Songs such as "West Virginia", "Down the Dream", and "The Mountain People" touch on early joy and disillusionment/disappointment, while "Jill of All Trades" and "The Burden of Proof" reflect a few more years of life under one's belt and the smoothing out that can come with them. "Underneath the Moon" and "Wigglin' Man"... are more straightforward getting-laid songs, funny as hell... while several of their albums have been as good as Seductive Reasoning, none were better. Nor did they have to be. - Todd Mason (previously) [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 9:52 PM PST - 29 comments

Boston Tea Party
238 years ago this evening… in response to the Townshend Act, and the East India Company… a few colonists had a Tea (link) Party (link).
posted by jabo at 8:24 PM PST - 50 comments

Visit Sweden.
Swedish Citizens Now Control @sweden Twitter Account. Curators of Sweden is based around the idea that no single voice can represent the country, so a slew of guest Swedish curators will do the best job to portray the national character. One Swedish citizen will have control of the @sweden handle each week.
posted by sweetkid at 7:35 PM PST - 34 comments

There is no political subtext
Greens Survive only when Reds Die
posted by rodmandirect at 7:06 PM PST - 25 comments

The only thing it lacks is John Lithgow
There's Hard Rock, Soft Rock, Punk Rock, Folk Rock, Progressive Rock, Alt Rock, Art Rock, Acid Rock, Indie Rock, Grunge Rock, Schoolhouse Rock, 30 Rock, and now there's Third Rock, an internet radio station "powered by NASA", yes, NASA. (Think of it as 'New Music' with commercials for something you already like)
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:48 PM PST - 20 comments

The Bugle is in the bin.
After 176+ episodes, satirical podcast The Bugle with John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman will no longer be published by The Times. [more inside]
posted by Uppity Pigeon #2 at 6:25 PM PST - 60 comments

Game Club 199X
Here is Game Club 19XX, a new monthly podcast from Hardcore Gaming 101 (previously) in which knowledgeable gamers discuss playing through old video games without FAQs or walkthroughs. Episode 1 is on Snake's Revenge, the forgotten NES sequel to Metal Gear. (MP3 download from MediaFire, 1:27:32)
posted by JHarris at 6:11 PM PST - 10 comments

A Very Calvin and Hobbes Christmas
A Very Calvin and Hobbes Christmas Nifty little YT short recreating some of the classic Calvin and Hobbes snowmenagerie.
posted by ironjelly at 5:59 PM PST - 19 comments

Buncha muncha cruncha humans
Dear Humanity, I'm afraid I have some bad news. Nature wants to eat you. SLTumblr. NSFPeople who are frightened of pictures of terrifying organisms.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 5:17 PM PST - 80 comments

Spill, Then Poof
When you send people passwords and private links via email or chat, there are copies of that information stored in many places. If you use a one-time link instead, the information persists for a single viewing which means it can't be read by someone else later. This allows you to send sensitive information in a safe way knowing it's seen by one person only. Think of it like a self-destructing message, a One Time Secret.
posted by netbros at 4:11 PM PST - 35 comments

Stop focusing on what you don’t want to happen.
30 Things to Stop Doing To Yourself
posted by gauche at 2:11 PM PST - 158 comments

Layaway In A Manger
From Michigan to Nebraska, from Washington State to North Carolina, anonymous donors have been paying off "layaway" tabs for holiday-shopping families.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:16 PM PST - 82 comments

The Secret Life of Sam Hurd
It just hasn't been a good month for the Chicago Bears. First they lost Jay Cutler and Matt Forte to injuries, and yesterday wide receiver Sam Hurd was arrested in an undercover drug sting, after an investigation that began in July 2011.
posted by SisterHavana at 12:50 PM PST - 60 comments

that pile of books looks like something I recognize
From architect/designer Luis Urculo, a short film in which iconic buildings are modeled with everyday objects: Covers (vimeo) [more inside]
posted by Prince_of_Cups at 12:32 PM PST - 5 comments

Eat your Ouka, kids.
Flash Friday: Gamerswithjobs calls Nekogames' OUKA a "very minimalist experience, offering the simplest rules possible in a video game...(i)nstead of a long sentence or paragraph explaining things, or even a tutorial video, when you click the “Hint” button the game simply lays part of the level’s inner workings bare. It’s a testament to the simplicity of the game that this works so well." Just click the symbol, that's all. [more inside]
posted by mreleganza at 12:24 PM PST - 34 comments

Mr Jobs comes to Lund
In 1985, Apple started the "Apple University Consortium Europe" collaboration program, and one of the first universities to enroll was that of Lund, Sweden. To celebrate the collaboration, Apple CEO Steve Jobs came to Lund - and a 16 minute film of his visit has now been found and been made available by the University of Lund. You can see the clip here (.mov).
posted by mr.marx at 12:23 PM PST - 5 comments

Let a thousand flowers bloomberg
Americans Elect is an organization creating a ready-made slot on the 2012 presidential ballot for an unnamed independent ticket, thus removing the biggest barrier to a 3rd party challenge. (Donald Trump suggests himself.) The NYT thinks they'll qualify in all 50 states. They say they want a non-partisan, mixed-party ticket. Some on the left see a cabal of shadowy millionaires with ties to the FBI, CIA and military behind it. Team Obama is concerned.
posted by msalt at 12:14 PM PST - 93 comments

One Brick to Rule Them All
Lego Picks Up Hobbit and Lord of the Rings Licenses [more inside]
posted by Vindaloo at 11:36 AM PST - 80 comments

A bright spot, with watercolors
What you need is a splash of color!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:12 AM PST - 17 comments

Every single day. Every game you play. Every click you make....
The concept behind VoyURL is simple: A browser plugin records your every click, which you can then choose to share publicly in a real-time feed. Their website analyzes and shows you your online history in customized infographics, to identify patterns, recommend content and help you learn more about the way you use the internet. You can see the browsing history of all users in one giant timeline or follow a specific user. The service is currently in beta, but you can slip in here or here. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:59 AM PST - 35 comments

Sinusitis or brain-eating amoeba, you decide!
We've talked about using neti pots in the past. From Louisiana comes this cautionary instruction on proper technique!
posted by Runes at 10:52 AM PST - 77 comments

Making Boxes ... Like A Boss
"You've seen boring unboxing videos. How about a cool boxing video?" A Korean postal worker demonstrates his superior packaging skills [SLYT].
posted by bayani at 10:23 AM PST - 45 comments

The Stars of Famicom Games
Chris Covell translated a Japanese social studies book about the making of Super Mario Bros. 3.
posted by ignignokt at 10:18 AM PST - 10 comments

"Le futur du rock en France a un nom : il s'appelle Izia."
Back in Town is a song by Izia, a French rock band fronted by and named for Izïa Higelin. Even though she comes from a showbiz family, the band initially found little favor on French radio. But after a string of blistering live performances all over France, the self-titled first album became a hit and won a couple of awards at the prestigious Victoire de la Musique ceremony, where Izia performed the song Let Me Alone. There are a bunch of live performances online, including of Life is Going Down, a cover of AC/DC's Touch Too Much and a duet with Iggy Pop. This past November, sophomore album So Much Trouble was released, featuring such songs as the title track, On Top of the World, and my favorite, Baby.
posted by Kattullus at 10:10 AM PST - 9 comments

Breathing life back into games
Gamasutra's Top 10 Indie Games of 2011 [more inside]
posted by OverlappingElvis at 10:07 AM PST - 19 comments

Hey dol! merry dol! ring a dong dillo! I WILL EAT YOUR SOULS! Ring a dong! hop along! fal lal the willow! I WILL EAT YOUR SOULS! Tom Bom, jolly Tom, Tom Bombadillo! I WILL EAT YOUR SOULS!
Oldest and Fatherless: The Terrible Secret of Tom Bombadil (previous)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:04 AM PST - 89 comments

Non Uncaged
Last month How Did This Get Made (previously) held a live panel discussion of Superman III, a movie that started as a bizarre pitch involving everyone from Brainiac to Supergirl and Mr. Mxyzptlk, and ended up as a Richard Pryor vehicle. However for some truly crazy stories you may want to skip ahead to part II, where they are joined by Jack O'Halloran - Non from Superman I and II, boxer and son of the head of Murder, Inc. - who talks at length about his life, the movies, and choking Christopher Reeve.
posted by Artw at 10:01 AM PST - 30 comments

The jive is hip, don't say hep, That's a slip of the lip, let me give you a tip - Don't you ever say hep, it ain't hip, NO, IT AIN'T!
Three Soundies and one collage:
Handsome Harry The Hipster - Harry "The Hipster" Gibson
4-F Ferdinand - Harry "The Hipster" Gibson
Opus 12EEE - Harry "The Hipster" Gibson
Who Put the Benzedrine in Mrs Murphys Ovaltine ? - Harry "The Hipster" Gibson
That last song would prove to be his undoing. [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 9:31 AM PST - 14 comments

It's a window *and* a metaphor of your life!
In 1999 MTV launched Downtown, an animated slice of life show about young people in Manhattan's Lower East Side based on interviews with non-actors (Pilot part 2 part 3 ) created by animator Chris Prynoski (Daria, Beavis And Butt-head, Metalocalypse). Despite an Emmy nomination, the show was cancelled after one season (with one unaired episode). Like so many MTV shows, licensing complications prevented it from reaching DVD, meaning the only way to watch the show was to e-mail Chris directly. Until someone uploaded the entire series to Youtube.
posted by The Whelk at 8:38 AM PST - 18 comments

It's his friend's laugh that makes it.
As he starts to ride towards the camera, you just know it's going to be an awesome maneou-
S (stupid) LYT
posted by Hartham's Hugging Robots at 8:17 AM PST - 34 comments

For the sake of the children
In the state of Virginia, it is now legal for licensed adoption agencies and foster facilities to discriminate on the basis of a potential parent's sexual orientation, religion, age, gender, disability, political beliefs, or family status. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:30 AM PST - 60 comments

There's got to be a better pun than "Class War," right?
The Face of Student Debt: Natalia Antonova stopped paying when she realized that it was the loans or her child. (The response has been telling.) Kristin Rawls demands solidarity. Glenn Reynolds says colleges should pay for defaulters.
"The proportion of freshmen and sophomores at four-year colleges who will default on federal loans over their lifetime is estimated at between 19 and 31 percent, depending on the type of loan and when it was written, the [DOE's] Office of Inspector General wrote in a 2003 audit."(doc)
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:14 AM PST - 221 comments

Massacre feared in Kazakhstan
Seventy feared dead and five hundred wounded by riot police in Zhanaozen, west Kazakhstan. Workers in the oil town have been on strike since May; protests (YT) during independence day celebrations escalated into clashes with security forces. Latest reports suggest protesters are gathering again and 1,500 marines are moving in.
posted by Abiezer at 5:05 AM PST - 23 comments

25 Incredibly Detailed Black And White Portraits of the Homeless by Lee Jeffries
Black And White Portraits of the Homeless "Lee Jeffries' career began as a sports photographer, capturing the beautiful game of football in Manchester. Then a chance meeting with a homeless woman living in the streets of London changed his life forever. He has since dedicated himself to capturing gripping portraits of the disenfranchised. Shooting exclusively in black and white, Lee Jeffries’ 135+ pictures can be viewed in his Flickr Photostream. The majority are closeup portraits with incredible detail. Each photograph exudes so much raw character and depth, you find yourself studying each shot with great intensity."
posted by parrot_person at 3:50 AM PST - 42 comments

The minor fall and the major lift
This week, a reality show contestant performed a song once described as an "epic, gospel-tinged ballad of desire and rejection, love and sex, God and man, failure and transcendence, the inevitability of death and triumph of the spirit against the greatest odds". Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah. [more inside]
posted by szechuan at 3:28 AM PST - 73 comments

indecision + vulgarity + location-aware browsing = booze
Where the fuck should I go for drinks? [more inside]
posted by grouse at 1:08 AM PST - 92 comments

Eduardo Barreto 1954 – December 15, 2011
Comic book artist Eduardo Barreto, best known for his work on such DC titles as New Teen Titans and various Superman projects, not to mention his work on the Judge Parker newspaper strip, has died at the age of 57. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:45 AM PST - 8 comments

December 15
Christopher Alexander
A Pattern Language explores the living structure in good and bad buildings, human artifacts, and natural systems, discussing the presence of the same living order in all systems. [Christopher] Alexander proposes that the living order depends on features which make a close connection with the human self. The quality of works of art, artifacts, and buildings is defined not merely in terms of living structure, but also in their capacity to affect human growth and human well-being.
posted by Trurl at 9:50 PM PST - 38 comments

RIP Christopher Hitchens
In Memoriam: Christopher Hitchens, 1949–2011
posted by naju at 8:54 PM PST - 491 comments

I'm gonna sing the Doom song now
China's economy poised to join the rest of us in the toilet. I certainly hope one of you smart people can prove this article wrong.
posted by coriolisdave at 8:06 PM PST - 84 comments

Don't just read russian. You must think Russian.
People; ask not what F14's can do for you, but rather, what F14People can do for SLYoutubewhatwoahwowJetFighters are People?
posted by infinite intimation at 7:55 PM PST - 38 comments

MMO Extinction Level Event
"The subscription model is dead." says John Smedley, head of Sony Online Entertainment, and creator of EverQuest. Are people willing to pay $15 per month to play a computer game that isn't endorsed by Mr. T? Bioware is betting a rumored $135 million, the most ever spent on a video game, that the answer is yes. Star Wars: The Old Republic launches on December 20th. [more inside]
posted by tastyhat at 7:04 PM PST - 104 comments

Help, help, I'm being repressed!
Republican Governor Scott Walker filed suit against the non partisan Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (GAB). At issue in the suit is a statement by the GAB concerning challenges to the gathered signatures - that signatures, no matter what names are listed, are presumed valid absent a challenge by the Walker campaign. This presumption is a violation of Walker's 14th Amendment rights and violates the will of people who chose not to sign, he argues in the complaint. (pdf) [more inside]
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 6:49 PM PST - 64 comments

Singing animated Christmas hedgehogs. Yup, that's about it.
Pick a hedgehog and make him sing a Christmas carol. An interactive Youtube animation featuring absurdly cute hedgehogs who will supposedly sing a carol for you. via boringpostcards and metachat
posted by mygothlaundry at 6:37 PM PST - 12 comments

Faster than a speeding Gingrich
Here is Super President. Super President foils the villain by ringing a bell. 60s Batman got his deduction skills from Super President. Jerry Beck on Super President. From his accurately-named website, Worst Cartoons Ever.
posted by JHarris at 6:00 PM PST - 8 comments

A Game of Hugs
While the most talked about topics in hockey this year have been the deaths of multiple current and former NHL enforcers, the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl plane crash tragedy, and the rash of concussions among star players, A new series by the Yahoo "Puck Daddy" blog is bringing attention to a more positive aspect of the game: the Hockey Hug. [more inside]
posted by ghharr at 4:22 PM PST - 17 comments

It's the Ham Bot that keeps me up nights.
A spherical flying robot has been developed at the Japanese Ministry of Self-Defense; it can zoom along indoors and outdoors at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour, or just hover. Menacingly. Science Fiction In The News is a subsection of science-fiction site Technovelgy, which tracks both the predictions of future tech made in science fiction past and present and its manifestations in real life. What tech, you ask? Well, if it’s appeared in your nightmares, it’s probably been on this page: [more inside]
posted by Diablevert at 3:52 PM PST - 29 comments

A Brief History of Palm Trees in Southern California
Of the hundreds of species of palm trees you might find in southern California, only one is native to the state, and that shaggy specimen is naturally found around springs and arroyos in the desert southwest, not lined along beach community parks and streets. How did a desert tree become an icon of fruitful turn of the twentieth century Los Angeles, the former garden city? KCET writer Nathan Masters provides a brief history of palm trees in southern California. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:49 PM PST - 23 comments

Comet falls into sun
Today, a comet falls into the sun. Via
posted by hot_monster at 3:47 PM PST - 27 comments

By no means just another struggling Michigan town.
Now that the factories are closed, it’s tee time in Benton Harbor (SLNYT, previously).
posted by xowie at 3:41 PM PST - 8 comments

Другой Челси История из Донецка!
The other Chelsea. A story from Donetsk [1:28:06].
posted by - at 3:38 PM PST - 5 comments

God creates Man. Man creates Indie. Indie kills Man. God inherits Indie.
Tired of the same old renditions of the Christmas Story? Try this video and its prequel, produced in the vein of Spike Jonze's Where the Wild Things Are.
posted by kethonna at 3:35 PM PST - 6 comments

Two PDFs about PDFs
An "Exciting Guide to Probability Distributions" from the University of Oxford: part 1, part 2. (Two links to PDFs)
posted by JoeXIII007 at 3:23 PM PST - 17 comments

Joe Simon R.I.P.
Joe Simon , who along with Jack Kirby created Captain America, died today at the age of 98. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 3:18 PM PST - 29 comments

No Pants O'Clock!
Dirty Signs with Kristin is an informative YouTube channel that teaches you how to sign things you may need to use in day-to-day conversation, like cum dumpster, suck my cock, Trebek, nice shoes, wanna fuck?, it's like Christmas in my mouth, you have a sandy vagina, twat waffle, and many more (NSFW).
posted by Lutoslawski at 3:17 PM PST - 33 comments

A moment on the lips...a lifetime on the therapist.
Rosemount High School athletes were recently tricked into making out with their own parents in front of a crowd. The principal of the school has offered an "apology".
posted by gman at 3:00 PM PST - 207 comments

Best Of 2011: Space and Astronomy
Timelapse of the Year: an awe-inspiring trailer for the movie TimeScapes by Tom Lowe (full 4K version on YouTube/MP4 direct link). (Previously)
Rover Newcomer: Where In The Solar System is Curiosity?
Astronomy Photographer of the Year. The Top 24 Deep Space Pictures of 2011Top 14 Solar System PhotosTop 16 Space Photos.  (Images of a million-light-year long collision of galaxy clusters and a “stellar snow angel” didn’t make the cut, but should have).
Discovery of the Year: Opportunity uncovers conclusive proof that water flowed on Mars.
Astronomy Animation of the year: a zoom to the center of the Milky Way, and the supermassive black hole that is feeding there.
Lifetime Achievement: The Known Universe, a stunning three-minute zoom from the peak of the Himalayas to the edge of the cosmos, finally available in HD. (Previously).
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 2:52 PM PST - 6 comments

A lady can do no wrong
An Essay On The Noble Science Of Self-Justification: "Timid brides, you have, probably, hitherto been addressed as angels. Prepare for the time when you shall again become mortal. Take the alarm at the first approach of blame; at the first hint of a discovery that you are any thing less than infallible:--contradict, debate, justify, recriminate, rage, weep, swoon, do any thing but yield to conviction. I take it for granted that you have already acquired sufficient command of voice; you need not study its compass; going beyond its pitch has a peculiarly happy effect upon some occasions. But are you voluble enough to drown all sense in a torrent of words? Can you be loud enough to overpower the voice of all who shall attempt to interrupt or contradict you? Are you mistress of the petulant, the peevish, and the sullen tone? Have you practised the sharpness which provokes retort, and the continual monotony which by setting your adversary to sleep effectually precludes reply?" For remember, "a lady can do no wrong."
posted by shivohum at 2:08 PM PST - 5 comments

Naming our kids like products and our products like kids
Laura Wattenberg of The Baby Name Wizard has announced 2011's Name of the Year. And the winner is... Siri. [more inside]
posted by Anyamatopoeia at 2:05 PM PST - 57 comments

Microsoft Announces Automatic IE6 Updating
IE6 was released to the world 10 years ago. Now Microsoft is saying "Goodbye". (from the MSNBC Article) "To help expedite the farewell (or rather, the execution) of its ancient Web browser, Microsoft says next month it will start to upgrade Windows customers automatically to the latest version of IE available for their computer." [more inside]
posted by kellygrape at 1:16 PM PST - 87 comments

shrieking ensues
Feel-good SLYT of the day: "So tell me what it's going to be like now that you two are going to be grandpas."
posted by roger ackroyd at 1:03 PM PST - 41 comments

The OTHER 12 Days of Christmas
In the mountains of North Carolina an old tradition lives on: Breakin Up Christmas. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 12:34 PM PST - 18 comments

A Call to Action
After investigating a tragic crash involving two school buses and a third passenger vehicle in Missouri last year the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommended this week that state and local governments ban all forms of cellphone communication while driving, including texting and talking using handsfree devices. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 12:32 PM PST - 131 comments

Back and There Again.
Many ages ago, before some had yet to hear of The Hobbit or the Lord of the Rings or the collectible LOTR glasses sold at Burger King, critics did their initial reviews. Here's the original review by the New York Times of The Hobbit in 1938. Then came The Fellowship of the Ring, followed by The Two Towers, and of course The Return of the King. Here's a 1967 interview with Tolkien after the influence of his work was starting to be felt. One interesting detail noted is that Tolkien typed the entire 1200+ page manuscript of TLOTR with two fingers. Of course, not everyone viewed the books so favorably. The BBC has detailed some initial criticism against the books, but this seems to have been the minority response within a generally broad and warm literary reception.
posted by SpacemanStix at 12:17 PM PST - 44 comments

Don’t Support Your Local Bookseller
Farhad Manjoo of Slate argues that buying books from Amazon is better than buying from local bookstores.
posted by reenum at 12:12 PM PST - 183 comments

"There's only a few of us left to man the controls."
W i l c o (MLYT +Colbertnation) frontman Jeff Tweedy does the Chicago weather report(:30, OPENS W/ AD). [more inside]
posted by obscurator at 11:11 AM PST - 21 comments

George Osodi captures the beauty and ugliness of Nigeria
George Osodi is a London based and Nigerian born photographer. Recent exhibits have covered the region's beauty admist the local effects of the oil industry.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:11 AM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment

Czech it out!
Five guys, five hundred cans of spray paint, and sixteen days.
posted by chronkite at 11:07 AM PST - 39 comments

"This slump won’t end until 2031"
You know about the Great Depression, but do you know about the Long Depression? For a while now some have been suggesting we're in a "Third Depression", not so much like the Great one, but more like the Long Depression (1873–96) of 23 years (originally called the Great Depression). Suggesting "This slump won’t end until 2031". [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 11:02 AM PST - 44 comments

The A to Z of 2011's music
The FluxBlog 2011 survey mix is out! Ten discs, 183 songs (that’s 26 more than last year), adding up to almost 13 hours of music. Download, share and enjoy.
posted by spitefulcrow at 11:00 AM PST - 16 comments

Life will suck if they censor the internet
Get your censor on. GYWO creator David Rees takes on the Stop Online Piracy Act. Meanwhile, a group of 83 prominent Internet inventors and engineers sent an open letter to Congress, stating their opposition to the SOPA and PIPA Internet blacklist bills (previously).
posted by homunculus at 10:33 AM PST - 81 comments

This is history
Raiding the Lost Ark: a filmumentary (pt.1, vimeo) [more inside]
posted by mediated self at 10:32 AM PST - 17 comments

Photographs of Palmyra
Photographs and more photographs of the ancient city of Palmyra, seat of the Palmyrene Empire and home to Queen Zenobia.
posted by Rumple at 10:17 AM PST - 13 comments

MURDER METHOD FOR VILLAIN TO USE: _SCORPIONS_
Want to write a pulp novel full of two fisted tales of action and adventure in the mode of Doc Savage but don't know where to start? You need the Lester Dent Pulp Paper Master Fiction Plot! "No yarn of mine written to the formula has yet failed to sell."
posted by Artw at 9:58 AM PST - 37 comments

Pull my finger.
Fart jokes! Everybody loves them! And everybody knows a couple of good ones. But did you know that they date back to the 5th century BC, and appear prominently in two plays by Aristophanes, "The Knights" and "The Clouds"? [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 9:48 AM PST - 45 comments

How Aston builds the One-77
How Aston builds the beautiful One-77 [more inside]
posted by zeoslap at 9:48 AM PST - 49 comments

Mark Carney on the difficulties of deleveraging
Mark Carney: the man who speaks the truth. Toronto Globe and Mail columnist Jeffrey Simpson recommends a recent speech by Bank of Canada head Mark Carney. "Most fundamentally, current events mark a rupture. Advanced economies have steadily increased leverage [i.e. debt] for decades. That era is now decisively over. The direction may be clear, but the magnitude and abruptness of the process are not. It could be long and orderly or it could be sharp and chaotic. How we manage it will do much to determine our relative prosperity." [more inside]
posted by russilwvong at 9:35 AM PST - 10 comments

The Marginal Utility of Bickering: Why You Secretly Love Arguing on the Internet
A great contribution to the economics-made-fun genre and food for Mefi thought: Arguing on the internet is addictive because you’re almost always arguing against either a very stupid person or a very smart person, and those are the two types of people most fun to argue with.
posted by Philosopher's Beard at 9:05 AM PST - 49 comments

How the World Searched
Fukushima. Osama Bin Laden. The Arab Spring. The Royal Wedding. Natural Disasters. Argentine Soccer Teams. Elizabeth Taylor. Gabrielle Giffords. iPad2 & iPhone 5. Steve Jobs..... Google Presents their 11th annual Zeitgeist: 2011 Year In Review (youtube) "What mattered in 2011? Zeitgeist sorted billions of Google searches to capture the year's 10 fastest-rising global queries and the rest of the spirit of 2011." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:31 AM PST - 26 comments

On Legal Education, and ...
"The contemporary American law school is based on bullshit." [more inside]
posted by gauche at 7:30 AM PST - 106 comments

Fare Dodger
A pet cat named Dodger is living up to his name - by catching free bus trips from his home town.
posted by veedubya at 6:05 AM PST - 55 comments

The 5 Most Horrifyingly Wasteful Film Shoots
The 5 Most Horrifyingly Wasteful Film Shoots.
posted by John Cohen at 5:55 AM PST - 75 comments

The War on Twitter
Did you know that Al-Shabaab, the Islamic militant group currently fighting for control of southern Somalia, has a Twitter account? [more inside]
posted by Aizkolari at 5:37 AM PST - 22 comments

Lego Builds for the Other Half of the World
"Over the years, Lego has had five strategic initiatives aimed at girls. Some failed because they misapprehended gender differences in how kids play. Others, while modestly profitable, didn’t integrate properly with Lego’s core products. Now, after four years of research, design, and exhaustive testing, Lego believes it has a breakthrough. On Dec. 26 in the U.K. and Jan. 1 in the U.S., Lego will roll out Lego Friends, aimed at girls 5 and up.... "The Lego Friends team is aware of the paradox at the heart of its work: To break down old stereotypes about how girls play, it risks reinforcing others. “If it takes color-coding or ponies and hairdressers to get girls playing with Lego, I’ll put up with it, at least for now, because it’s just so good for little girls’ brains,” says Lise Eliot." From Businessweek (print link, above; via BoingBoing), an interesting look at Lego's new girl-oriented initiative.
posted by MonkeyToes at 5:18 AM PST - 189 comments

I can see my house from here
Ross Racine works with a fictional world of suburban forms. Cristoph Gielen works with actual suburban forms. Here are some of their works, in no particular order: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:13 AM PST - 4 comments

Outta mind on Saturday night, 1970!
Ye olde rock and roll time machine, part two: recently found photos of a Stooges performance at a suburban Detroit high school from 1970.
posted by NoMich at 4:06 AM PST - 19 comments

Can YOU survive?
Mobile Suit Gundam premiered on April 7th, 1979 in Nagoya, Japan, and with it came the now three-decade-old franchise that launched a thousand plastic model kits. WARNING: MAY CONTAIN spoilers for a thirty-year-old beloved cultural touchstone that you've likely never seen or possibly even heard of. WARNING: DEFINITELY CONTAINS many, many links to TV Tropes. 28.8k USERS: Upgrade to 56K already. You're going to need it. [more inside]
posted by DoctorFedora at 12:01 AM PST - 64 comments

December 14
60 Days to Live - to record the journey--however long or short it may be.
I've been advised by doctors to prepare for death. "I believe that there is strength in facing reality, and then planning your demise on your own terms as best you can. And hey, if a miracle happens and we beat the odds, that is only a bonus. Facing reality doesn't mean denying a possible happy outcome. Look at my case for instance--I have surpassed 60 days, and I am not dead yet. I haven't counted how many days I am past my expiration date, but one could say that each day is a miracle now." [more inside]
posted by jcterminal at 11:53 PM PST - 44 comments

Applied Ultrafinitism OR Amending a Forgotten Parameter
S. Ekhad , E. Georgiadis, D. Zeilberger"How to Gamble If You're In a Hurry."  arXiv:1112.1645v1 (pdf), 7 Dec 2011. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 11:33 PM PST - 3 comments

What Women Want: Porn and the Frontier of Female Sexuality
What Women Want: Porn and the Frontier of Female Sexuality [NSFW] James Deen is a young, handsome porn star who is becoming famous for actually appealing to women. Due to his boyish, slightly skate-punk aesthetic, naturally toned body, and ability to connect emotionally (or at least appear to) with his female co-stars, Deen has garnered a following of devoted young women in an industry that in most cases ignores them entirely. via
posted by mlis at 11:29 PM PST - 70 comments

The climax starts at 3:13
Matt Mulholland performing "My Heart Will Go On" on the recorder. That is all. (SLYT)
posted by Rory Marinich at 10:43 PM PST - 19 comments

The paintings of Don Van Vliet
Don Van Vliet is self-taught. He neither expects allowances for the amateur’s lack of dexterity nor permits any technical deficiency on his own part to limit his scope. Nobody's understanding or forbearance sets limits to what he does - any more than does the fear of going wrong. The lacerations, transgressions, and awkward moments that he introduces are unpredictable, as is their duration; when he takes the figures that confront him and tugs them out of shape, he simultaneously tugs himself out of shape - and out of his own limitations. - Roberto Ohrt
posted by Trurl at 8:29 PM PST - 14 comments

.
Tomorrow marks the official end of the Iraq war. The Obama administration describes it as a 'promise kept'. The war resulted in a great many casualties. Although the final troop movement out of the country is not scheduled to begin for a few days, history will record December 15 as the end of the war, as the flag of the American military mission in Bagdhad is lowered and returned to the US. Scholars at Brown University estimate the total cost of the war at 265,000 dead and $3-4 trillion dollars. The main contenders for the Republican party's 2012 nomination both expressed approval and disapproval. Previously, 339 times.
posted by anigbrowl at 8:15 PM PST - 95 comments

Special Snowflakes
Star Wars Snowflakes (with patterns). Star Trek Snowflakes (without patterns). [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 8:03 PM PST - 17 comments

Hobo With A Shotgun plus some others
The films of 2011 in 6:22 [more inside]
posted by Flashman at 7:45 PM PST - 20 comments

Prrrrrrrrana
Cat yoga.
posted by flex at 7:34 PM PST - 28 comments

Robots
The Old Robots [more inside]
posted by Sailormom at 5:47 PM PST - 22 comments

Why are Indian Reservations So Poor?
Why are Indian Reservations So Poor? Forbes writer John Koppisch says it's because of a lack of individual property rights. In a detailed response, the executive director of non-profit organization Village Earth says: "I find it ironic how academics and journalists try to come up with new theories to explain poverty on reservations but fail to take into account the obvious. The government owes Native Americans at least 45 Billion dollars yet, in the settlement offered by the Obama administration, they are being compensated for less that .06% of that." [more inside]
posted by desjardins at 5:38 PM PST - 101 comments

Or just ten reasons why Donna Summer is awesome in general
10 Reasons Why Donna Summer Belongs in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
posted by rollick at 4:51 PM PST - 54 comments

This is a subject of but small importance; and I know not whether it will interest any readers, but it has interested me.
CN Turbo Train Part 2, part 3, 1970 Film‬. Canada Off the Rails: You know the story of the Avro Arrow, now discover how Canada fell from leader to laggard in another cutting edge, vastly profitable, globally relevant transportation industry, where Canadians had held a strong lead, until this Canadian homegrown industry was derailed; high-speed derailed... CN Turbo Train - "3:59" - The Lost Film (the high speed rail flickr pool is recommended viewing). [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 4:46 PM PST - 17 comments

La Cite D'Arkadia
Here is the pilot episode of Les Mondes Engloutis (Part 2), a French animated sci-fi/fantasy televison series from 1985. Here is its iconic theme song. In English it translates into "The Sunken Worlds," but English-speakers know it better as Spartakus and the Sun Beneath the Sea. More information can be found on Tripod fansite The Lost Archives of Arkadia. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 4:06 PM PST - 23 comments

Panoramic Virtual Tour of Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
Take a Panoramic Virtual Tour of Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Available as a full-screen virtual tour starting entry rotunda and navigating from there, or jump to individual rooms.
posted by filthy light thief at 3:01 PM PST - 7 comments

Thus ending years of speculation.
Canadian music icon Randy Bachman hosts a weekly two-hour program called Vinyl Tap on CBC; on the program, he plays older music and talks about the stories behind the creation of the tracks. In 2010, he hosted a live episode called Guitarology 101 from the Glenn Gould Studio in Toronto. The episode was devoted to various aspects of guitars and included a story about his visit to Abbey Road Studios where Giles Martin offered him a chance to hear anything he wished from the masters of the Beatles catalogue. His choice: to hear the opening chord of A Hard Day's Night. After listening to each separate track, he walks his audience through how the the chord was constructed. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit at 2:34 PM PST - 54 comments

Mohammed el Gorani
Mohammed el Gorani, the youngest prisoner held at Guantánamo, has written a memoir of his time there, the lead up to his imprisonment, and subsequent release years later.
posted by gman at 2:02 PM PST - 65 comments

Elizabeth Taylor's jewels huge success at auction
Tuesday at Christie's, Elizabeth Taylor's collection of jewelry brought $115.8 million most of it earmarked for her AIDS and other charities. [more inside]
posted by Anitanola at 1:54 PM PST - 23 comments

"It’s not clear why police decided to hone in on punks."
In Indonesia, a punk rock concert is raided and attendees are arrested, shaved, de-pierced, bathed and sent for re-education.
posted by griphus at 1:52 PM PST - 49 comments

The Little Anarchist Collective That Could
George Whitman, founder of the Parisian landmark bookstore Shakespeare And Company, has died at the age of 98
posted by The Whelk at 1:17 PM PST - 49 comments

Hang in there till at least 00:48
Sloth Sanctuary is a documentary about a sloth orphanage in Costa Rica that will air on Animal Planet on December 18th. Trailer
posted by babbyʼ); Drop table users; -- at 1:13 PM PST - 33 comments

For the person who has everything....
Say Hello to My Little Friend. Mary Roach examines the history of head shrinking among Amazon tribes and Americans' fascination with the little things. She also includes a handy DIY guide.
posted by mudpuppie at 12:48 PM PST - 16 comments

Thanks for taking care of it for me.
What are the odds? When Jim showed up to buy Eric's 63 VW convertible, he already had the key in his pocket. [more inside]
posted by richyoung at 12:47 PM PST - 23 comments

The Night of The Hunter
After 50 years of service, the Lockheed P-3 Orion, is standing down. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 12:10 PM PST - 31 comments

The Science of Bones
The TV show Bones is loosely based on the life of forensic anthropologist and author Kathy Reichs. But how much science does the show get right? Can you really use the mandibular angle to figure out the sex of the victim? What about diagnosing Fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva from a tiny bone fragment? Biological anthropologist Kristina Killgrove dissects the science of each episode on her blog, Powered by Osteons.
posted by melissam at 12:08 PM PST - 67 comments

The crime against women that no one understands
The crime against women that no one understands "They would be 10 educated, professional women versus a demonstrated liar—a man who had pretended to be a doctor, a CIA employee, even an astronaut—whom a court-appointed psychologist would decide met the legal definition of a "sexually violent predator." And yet the most remarkable thing about both trials wasn't the way they exposed the alleged tactics of a serial date rapist. It was that despite the outrageousness of the accusations against Marsalis, the testimony of 10 women wasn't enough to get a single rape conviction against him. The verdicts in these cases would be far lighter than his accusers sought—and victims' advocates say the outcome reveals a disturbing truth about the justice system. Nationwide, despite all the legal advances of the past three decades, little has changed for women who report a date rape. Because in far too many instances, juries don't believe date rape exists."
posted by nooneyouknow at 11:12 AM PST - 253 comments

Bearded dragon lizard playing Ant Crusher on cellphone
Bearded dragon lizard playing Ant Crusher on cellphone. (SLYT)
posted by swift at 10:59 AM PST - 31 comments

The Season 2 Winds Are Rising
HBO's Game of Thrones was a huge hit (with some controversy and rebuttals of same), securing a second season only two days after its debut. Filming of said season finished on December 11th and now the production crew is pulling all the pieces together for the April 2012 start of season 2. A few details have officially and unofficially come out, details after the jump: [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:52 AM PST - 85 comments

Felis catus
HTTP Status Cats. Add: Teapot [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 10:42 AM PST - 19 comments

Pee Wee Herman Christmas Special
Merry Christmas! Merry Merry Christmas! In 1988, the Writers Guild of America had a strike, the longest in its history, lasting 155 days. The strike had some fallout -- both Moonlighting and Kate and Allie lost audience members due to long hiatuses during the strike, which may have led to their cancellation. And while it generally did not affect children's television, one show, in particular, was hard-hit by the strike: Pee Wee's Playhouse, which had a season of only two episodes, plus a Christmas special. [more inside]
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 10:38 AM PST - 19 comments

All Together Now
All Together Now. Every Beatles tune, played together, sequenced in order of lengths, with the longest starting first and all 226 tunes ending together. This is a single link SoundCloud post.
posted by The Discredited Ape at 10:29 AM PST - 36 comments

Daytrippers
Vacations, diversions and roadtrips: On The Way suggests attractions and reststops for any route. The Weekend Map shows events and activities for 27 American cities for the coming weekend. Nerdy Day Trips (previously) suggests trips for geeks of all kinds, while Trazzler suggests daytrips for where you live. Don't have a car? Mapnificent (previously) shows you where you can get to from any point in a given time using public transit. EveryTrail suggests walks, rambles, strolls and hikes. Google's new HotelFinder service locates places to stay in a sketched area on a map, with a range of options. via
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:28 AM PST - 7 comments

And It's Caffeinated
You are not special. You are not a beautiful and unique snowflake. You are the same decaying organic matter as everything esle. You use FIGHT CLUB brand soap.
From the real-life Omni Consumer Products Corporation, a product development company focusing on "licensing, defictionalization, and reverse-branding". Previous products include Brawndo, Tru Blood and Stay Puft Marshmallows (giant monster mascot not included).
Disclaimer: This post is NOT intended to help sell the product, just to inform you that it exists in this atrophying universe. Previously.
posted by oneswellfoop at 10:03 AM PST - 84 comments

With special guest stars: Beatrice Arthur, Art Carney, Diahann Carroll, The Jefferson Starship and Harvey Korman!
The Star Wars Holiday special, in its entirety, complete with original commercials. You are welcome. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 9:45 AM PST - 107 comments

"If I am kept away from writing I become physically unwell. It is art and the creation of art that sustains me." Russell Hoban 1925-2011
Depending on when and what you started reading you may know Russell Hoban as the author of the children's book Bread and Jam for Frances or the post-apoocalyptic sci-fi novel Riddley Walker. Hoban also wrote Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas which was made into a one-hour Christmas Special originally aired by HBO in the 70's and re-released as recently as 2008. He published one book of poetry, The Last of the Wallendas, which included many dark poems such as The Dream of the Kraken. Hoban died in London last night, aged 86. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 9:43 AM PST - 83 comments

You have a hook for a hand and can buy multiple hats
Treasure Adventure Game is a free 2D game of exploration on the high seas from independent developer Robit Studios. Dig, sail, fight, and dive across dozens of islands in search of a lost treasure. Download link here.
posted by codacorolla at 9:30 AM PST - 4 comments

How to talk to boys at parties
"It was Alan Flusser who pointed out, a whole generation of men in the '70s stopped getting dressed, so they didn't teach their children how to get dressed. More and more people have found, 'Oh, I can go read about this stuff.' " The Oral History of Menswear Blogging. With Michael Bastian, Scott Schuman, Michael Williams, Lawrence Schlossman, Jesse Thorn, and others.
posted by villanelles at dawn at 9:29 AM PST - 58 comments

Don't even THINK about it...
I am under 21. If you are underage, Black Acre Brewery doesn't want you drinking their beer, or viewing their website. But they do want you to rock out.
posted by Blogwardo at 9:29 AM PST - 32 comments

Wide-eyed Wonder
The Spielberg Face
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:57 AM PST - 55 comments

Gustav Leonhardt, last recital
On December 12, 2011, world-famous harpsichordist Gustav Leonhardt played what appears to be the last recital of his sixty-one years long career in the Théâtre des Bouffes in Paris. Clips from the concert were uploaded on youtube yesterday. Suitable for the sad event, a melancholic Prélude by d'Anglebert first. [more inside]
posted by Namlit at 8:55 AM PST - 9 comments

GigaPan Time Machine
Not to be confused with a hot tub time machine, the GigaPan Time Machine enables simultaneous exploration of space and time across massive datasets that could not previously be interactively explored at full spatial and temporal resolution. Here is a short demo of the GigaPan Time Machine website. [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 8:27 AM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment

Really? Are you kidding?
The 20 Unhappiest People You Meet In The Comments Sections Of Year-End Lists
posted by box at 8:20 AM PST - 69 comments

Stuff to keep nerds up at night
The Nine Greatest Nerd Fears Today
posted by ShawnString at 7:53 AM PST - 80 comments

Citizens United: the impact.
Red money, blue money: The making of the 2012 campaign. "More than 80 percent of giving to Super PACs so far has come from just 58 donors, according to the Center for Responsive Politics analysis of the latest data, which covers the first half of 2011." This Salon piece details who the (surprisingly small) number of large donors are, and the SuperPACs they donate to.
posted by jaduncan at 7:42 AM PST - 18 comments

How Fox is helping Obama
How Fox News is Helping Barack Obama's Re-election Bid (via Naked Capitalism)
posted by wittgenstein at 7:40 AM PST - 50 comments

Jamie's Cryin' (because mom wouldn't let her meet Michael Anthony at the record store)
Ye olde rock and roll time machine: recently found photos of a Van Halen in-store appearance from 1978.
posted by mintcake! at 7:31 AM PST - 32 comments

Man the Fat Hunter
Did the disappearance of the elephant caused the rise of modern man? Humans are not good at extracting energy from plants or converting protein to energy. Without fire to allow for better conversion, fat was a vital part of early man's diet. Elephants being slower and larger than many other prey was a prime hunting target. When the number of elephants declined, man had to find other sources. Hunting smaller, faster prey resulted in a change in human evolution. Man became lighter and their brain size increased to handle the requirements for hunting enough animals to provide the necessary fat.
posted by 2manyusernames at 6:58 AM PST - 17 comments

The Labyrinth of Genre
The Labyrinth of Genre A browseable and searchable map of music genres, with short samples.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:23 AM PST - 22 comments

The Western Soundscape Archive
"The Western Soundscape Archive [...] features audio recordings of animals and environments throughout the western United States." "The project's geographic focus includes eleven contiguous western states - Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming - as well as baseline sound monitoring in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska." [more inside]
posted by OmieWise at 5:47 AM PST - 4 comments

The Protester
"A year after a Tunisian fruit vendor set himself ablaze, dissent has spread across the Middle East, to Europe and the US, reshaping global politics and redefining people power." The Protester is Time's 2011 Person of the Year.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:14 AM PST - 42 comments

Dogs winding down the electric windows
Dogs. In Cars! [sl vimeo] Watch whilst in your stuffy office and feel jealous of our canine friends.
posted by mippy at 2:29 AM PST - 14 comments

December 13
If you play it backwards it spells suiboM
Möbius Music Box [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 11:18 PM PST - 13 comments

SpaceShipTwo
The team that won the X-Prize in partnership with SpaceX, goes orbital
posted by Long Way To Go at 10:52 PM PST - 29 comments

West Coast Port Blockade
On Monday, the Occupy Wall Street movement disrupted ports in its West Coast Port Blockade. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 10:30 PM PST - 210 comments

"Bob Shuter, suburban vigilante. Driven by rage to wage a one-man war on the underworld of Kent, Bob Shuter is... The Reprisalizer."
"You're going nowhere, son. Just you, me ad the walls. So wipe that bloody grin off before it's shot off, and don't slouch. You toe rag. You bin. Pay attention when I break you. And break you I will, boy. You're in my manor, now." Buck up! It's Terry Finch's THE REPRISALIZER! Follow Bob Shuter, whose mission of reprisal against his brother's killers, their families, associates, progeny and property takes him across the desolate wasteland of 70s Britain, primarily Kent AKA FINCHLAND. Finch, writer of The Reprisalizer and DRAW!, the cowboy whose name means death, is soon to be the subject of a major motion picture from Matthew Holness, creator of Garth Marenghi's Darkplace.
posted by Artw at 9:50 PM PST - 15 comments

Australia's school for killers
More than 35 violent deaths have been linked to men who attended an abusive boys' home in regional Australia, the Tamworth Institution for Boys.
posted by puffl at 9:49 PM PST - 7 comments

It’s vital ’cause our survival could depend on a video going viral
In response to ongoing police brutality, particularly aimed at the non-violent Occupy Movement, B. Dolan (w/ Sage Francis, Toki Wright, and Jasiri X) have turned NWA's classic "Fuck The Police" into a call to citizen journalists to stand up and FILM THE POLICE!
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 9:35 PM PST - 59 comments

Observations From 20 Years of Iowa Life
“Those who stay in rural Iowa are often the elderly waiting to die, those too timid (or lacking in educated) to peer around the bend for better opportunities, an assortment of waste-toids and meth addicts with pale skin and rotted teeth, or those who quixotically believe, like Little Orphan Annie, that ‘The sun’ll come out tomorrow.’”

Just ahead of the Iowa Caucus, New Jersey native turned University of Iowa Professor Stephen Bloom has published a piece in The Atlantic that has caused quite a stir in the heartland. The piece, which is very critical of the Hawkeye State and her inhabitants, has a lot of Iowans on the defensive, with one article calling Bloom the "Michelangelo of hick-punching." Stephens has said the "feedback has been frightening," but he stands by his story. Perhaps a 1971 Harper's piece on Iowa captures the state with a bit more nuance.
posted by Lutoslawski at 9:04 PM PST - 134 comments

His thesis was about bacon. It was delicious.
One day at breakfast, a man's soul bursts out of his eyeball. While the soul roams the earth eating everything in sight, two wild deer bathe and dress the man's catatonic body. It's Dr. Breakfast.
posted by schmod at 9:00 PM PST - 10 comments

Elias Canetti
Elias Canetti is regarded by many as one of the century’s most distinguished writers. At least since he was awarded the Nobel Prize, in 1981, he has been regularly compared, if not to Proust or Joyce or Mann, then certainly to his Viennese brethren Robert Musil and Hermann Broch. Yet one suspects that, in America at leasts Canetti’s works have been rather more respected than read. This is particularly true in the case of the two long and difficult books upon which his reputation mainly rests: Auto-da-Fé (1935), his first and only novel, and Crowds and Power (1960), the meticulously idiosyncratic contribution to social theory that he considers his major work. - Roger Kimball [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 8:14 PM PST - 13 comments

Holiday Humble Bundle
Just in time for the gift-giving season, Humble Indie Bundle 4 has been released. Available for MacOS, Windows, and Linux on a pay-what-you-want scheme, this release (currently) includes Jamestown, Bit.Trip Runner, Super Meat Boy, Shank, and Nightsky HD. Pay more than the average donation and get Gratuitous Space Battles and Cave Story+ included in your Bundle. When purchasing, you can choose how your money will be allocated between developers, charities (Child's Play Charity and American Red Cross), and a tip to the Humble team. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 7:50 PM PST - 43 comments

Live Well With Less
Tiny origami apartment in Manhattan unfolds into 4 rooms. Making the most out of 450 square feet.
posted by crunchland at 7:49 PM PST - 75 comments

A grassroots initiative to clean up the streets of India
The Ugly Indian: Ordinary people trying to clean up India's streets, starting with the city of Bangalore. Associated Facebook page. BBC coverage of the initiative.
posted by peacheater at 7:49 PM PST - 6 comments

The Single Lane Superhighway
The Single Lane Superhighway is a simple website that lets you draw a car and join the parade of other drawn cars already on the road. Simple, yet sweetly engaging. Another interesting art project from Aaron Koblin, who has done several other notable social/data art projects (some of this, some of that, and some other things). Via waxy.
posted by lubujackson at 7:34 PM PST - 37 comments

Boiling like a pot
Dramatic and unprecedented plumes of methane have been have been seen bubbling to the surface of the Arctic Ocean. [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia at 5:55 PM PST - 189 comments

City of Fear
Prisoners in Brazil's prisons formed their own rules for governance, setting up a system much more effective than the government.
posted by reenum at 5:19 PM PST - 18 comments

Grade distribution by course and section at UW-Madison
The grade distribution for all courses at UW-Madison is available going back to the spring 2004 semester. Unlike studies of aggregate grades that document grade inflation with time, this site provides grade distributions for each individual course and section. The data clearly shows that students in STEM courses at Madison receive markedly lower grades than students in education courses. Cornell recently stopped posting similar data because it believes access to this information causes grade inflation because students select courses with higher medium grade averages. This recent article addresses the question of grade inflation more generally and the efforts at UNC to fight it. Meanwhile, this student editorial in the Bowdoin newspaper argues that faculty at selective schools must continue to inflate grades so that students can maintain a competitive advantage. Also, see this previous post.
posted by Seymour Zamboni at 3:43 PM PST - 91 comments

Tortoises all the way down
"Richard Lewis is director of Durrell's Madagascar programme. Here he speaks about how the team and the local villagers are working to protect the world's rarest tortoise. This includes the drastic measure of "defacing" the beautiful shells in order to make the animals worthless on the black market."
posted by vidur at 3:39 PM PST - 6 comments

Let's Make a Deal
Slate's Negotiation Academy: a series of podcasts that teach you how to haggle with (among others) jerks & liars, the opposite sex, real estate agents and kids.
posted by gottabefunky at 3:35 PM PST - 6 comments

In which a young girl creates a giant radish spaceship, becomes its captain, then returns two years later in a bunny outfit with super powers.
Here is the opening anime from the 20th Japan Science Fiction Convention, Daicon III (1981). And here is the follow-up anime for the 22nd convention, Daicon IV (1983). Both are loaded with pop culture references, and are (I hear) famous among Japanese anime fans. Here's some more information on them. The student animators of these shorts went on to found the anime studio GAINAX, which you may have heard of. GAINAX previously: one two
posted by JHarris at 3:18 PM PST - 19 comments

Bfxr: make sound effects
Bfxr is a web app for creating sound effects for your game or own amusement. Use the Randomize button to get started.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:59 PM PST - 24 comments

Daidle daidle deedle daidle dum
"If I Were A Poor Black Kid" by Gene Marks. "If I Were The Middle Class White Guy Gene Marks" by Kelly Virella
posted by griphus at 1:49 PM PST - 203 comments

Transatlantic Amateur Balloon
The CNSP-11 balloon from the California Near Space Project, launched from the west coast of the U.S., is now approaching the coast of Africa at 110,000 feet and 152 miles per hour. You can also follow the project on Twitter. [more inside]
posted by exogenous at 1:49 PM PST - 7 comments

Nerd Wallet: credit card comparison made easier
Nerd Wallet is a credit card comparison site that helps you filter cards based on select criteria. You can also limit your search to credit cards from credit unions. See also: the Nerd Wallet blog, with credit card industry and rewards news, and an interview with Tim Chen, founder of Nerd Wallet.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:42 PM PST - 9 comments

“Easy read” should not mean “easy write.”
One of the delights of the books and the blog is the authors’ willingness to play with ideas and consider alternative explanations. But unquestioning trust in friends and colleagues combined with the desire to be counterintuitive appear in several cases to have undermined their work. They—and anyone who wishes to convey economics and statistics to a popular audience—just need to take the next step and avoid, in any given example, privileging one story over all other possibilities.
Freakonomics: What Went Wrong?
posted by RogerB at 1:07 PM PST - 52 comments

Warning: May Contain Learning
All-American Muslim is a reality show on TLC which takes a look at life in Dearborn, Michigan--home to the largest mosque in the United States--through the lens of five Muslim American families. The participants are depicted dealing with lives far more familiar than extreme. But some are unhappy with the very existence of the series. Citing pressure from far-right wing groups, the home improvement chain Lowe’s has pulled its advertising from the show. Online, boycotts of the store, and other methods of protest, are multiplying. Meanwhile the controversy has put the show, as well as the little known group that takes credit for the Lowes advertising pull (the Florida Family Association), on the national media map.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:57 AM PST - 205 comments

Auto safety: Better Red than Dead
The Stop Sign Wasn’t Always Red. Yellow signs were used before there was a way produce a reflective material in red that would last. We have the Mississippi Valley Association of State Highway Departments to thank for the stop sign’s iconic shape. In 1923, the association developed an influential set of recommendations about street-sign shapes whose impact is still felt today. The recommendations were based on a simple, albeit not exactly intuitive, idea: the more sides a sign has, the higher the danger level it invokes. [more inside]
posted by Obscure Reference at 10:46 AM PST - 109 comments

Where Sibelius fell silent
“Our souls are worn down through continuous contact with one another,” Sibelius wrote in his diary. And: “I am building a studio for myself—at least one. Next to me are all the children whose babbling and pranks ruin everything.” But he never did build himself a studio; instead, he relocated his study upstairs and forbade the noise of any instrument while he was in the house. The children had to wait until he had gone for his daily walk to do their music practice. [more inside]
posted by smcg at 10:40 AM PST - 16 comments

NSFW: Xenomorph nerdery, along with a walk on the kinky side
Do they have odor? Is there a difference between warrior and drone aliens? How could they survive in the same form for such a long time (thousand years?) when actually they are changing their genetic code with every new host?

These are just a few of the posts on the website Alien Experience, which covers everything about the Alien and Predator creatures and movies.

But maybe you're looking for something a little different for your Xenomorph interest, something kinkier? Then read below the fold, where all links should be considered NSFW. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:37 AM PST - 24 comments

"By no means am I saying that these shows aren’t compelling. They are."
What Reality TV Does To Girls - referencing Jennifer Pozner's book and a new Girl Scout Research Institute national survey, this piece discusses "how did we get here?" and "how does this affect the viewer?" Jennifer Pozner talks about her work in Maclean's in much more depth.
posted by flex at 10:34 AM PST - 27 comments

Sending messages before texting/SMS
Teenage bicycle messengers carried messages around American cities in the early 20th century, including red light districts. Social reformer and photographer Lewis Hine documented their lives in image and text.
posted by brianogilvie at 10:06 AM PST - 19 comments

Fighting the TRUE menace
George Takei wants Star Wars and Star Trek fans to unite against the REAL enemy: Twilight. (slyt)
posted by antifuse at 8:37 AM PST - 159 comments

Abandoned Disneyland in Beijing
As you leave Beijing traveling north on the road to visit the Great Wall of China you pass by this (map). It's unguarded, and various people have explored it, reporting back. There are two theories of its demise, local farmers, or Disney.
posted by stbalbach at 7:39 AM PST - 12 comments

The Speed of Light, Caught on Film
Capturing light in motion at a trillionth of a second. MIT, using a new technique called Femto Photography, consisting of femtosecond laser illumination, picosecond-accurate detectors and mathematical reconstruction techniques, has captured the movement of pulses of light.
posted by quin at 7:31 AM PST - 32 comments

Forever Analytical
Pop song analysis, English teacher style (SLYT)
posted by litnerd at 7:28 AM PST - 39 comments

Fermented Fruits and Vegetables: a Global Perspective
Fermented Fruits and Vegetables: a Global Perspective. A comprehensive guide to pickled and fermented foods from around the world.
posted by Deathalicious at 6:13 AM PST - 39 comments

Class War: Low Wages and Beggar Thy Neighbor
A presentation by Dr. Heiner Flassbeck, a former deputy secretary in the German Ministry of Finance and currently chief economist the UN agency for World Trade and Development in Geneva. He talks about EMU and interest rates, and then links it all to class war and America.
posted by marienbad at 6:07 AM PST - 8 comments

Stan Wojenny
On December 13, 1981, Poland awoke to an announcement by Premier Wojciech Jaruzelski declaring a "state of war" (stan wojenny). Martial law would last until July 22, 1983. [more inside]
posted by orrnyereg at 5:54 AM PST - 15 comments

Wherefore art thou (probably), Higgs?
CERN has begun webcasting a public seminar in which there may or may not be some announcement regarding the significance or otherwise of recent observations regarding the possible existence of something that might be the Higgs boson. I am not a nuclear physicist, so I will try and keep up but will mainly be trying to catch the significance of the observations they have collected so far. In case these are talked about in terms of sigmas (there's scuttlebutt going around that this is a 3.5 sigma event), here's a table of sigma and probability. [more inside]
posted by carter at 4:40 AM PST - 85 comments

"Correlation may not imply causation, but it sure can help us insinuate it."
Correlation or Causation? Statistics are easy: All you need are two graphs and a leading question.
posted by beaucoupkevin at 4:09 AM PST - 29 comments

Come and see for yourself ...
On Monday, Google released Memories for the Future, a website that allows you to "... walk the scarred coastline [after the Japanese tsunami] virtually". "... it is possible to see the full extent of the damage by finding an image in Street View and then clicking the “Before” and “After” links at the top to see how the earthquake and tsunami impacted that area." The Japan Real Time blog has a good introduction and writeup.
posted by woodblock100 at 1:09 AM PST - 9 comments

December 12
A trombone to pick
When script guru John August, writer of films such as Big Fish and Go, posted a fairly casual post advocating teaching children piano and guitar over certain woodwind instruments, the response was fairly heated and resulted in Mr. August putting his blog on a comment holiday.
posted by smithsmith at 11:01 PM PST - 106 comments

The sages feel a great joy when they see such people.
Wonhyo never completed his journey to Tang China, but it is said that before turning back he found enlightenment in a cool drink from a loose skull. Today an international group is following in the footsteps of the 7th century Korean monk. Conveniently, they keep a blog.
posted by Winnemac at 10:35 PM PST - 7 comments

Government Debt Dynamics - A Calculator
"GOVERNMENT debt dynamics, once an esoteric subject of interest only to macroeconomists, are suddenly in vogue. With Greece flirting with default, Italy's bond yields rising fast, and America's government bonds losing their AAA status, public-debt burdens have become dinner-party talk. Our interactive chart shows current IMF forecasts but also allows you to input some basic economic assumptions to see where general government debt as a percentage of GDP might head."
posted by storybored at 9:08 PM PST - 16 comments

The Apple Collection 1986
The Apple Collection from 1986
posted by needled at 9:02 PM PST - 28 comments

The Autism Enigma
The Autism Enigma is a documentary that explores the potential link between gastrointestinal bacteria and the disorder. It is viewable online through CBC's The Nature of Things. [Full show on Vimeo, for those outside Canada.] [more inside]
posted by never used baby shoes at 8:27 PM PST - 38 comments

Bibliographia
Today Cambridge University offered a complete free digital archive of the personal papers of Sir Isaac Newton, including the Principa Mathematica and his first published research paper. The archives join a number of efforts to open original works of scientific greatness to the world: Newton's original works are handily supplemented by The Newton Project, showing the man's insertions and deletions to his own work.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 8:05 PM PST - 10 comments

Julien Temple's "Absolute Beginners"
[Absolute Beginners] has a glossy immediacy, and you can feel the flash and determination that went into it. What you don't feel is the tormented romanticism that made English adolescents in the 70s swear by the novel the way American kids had earlier sworn by The Catcher in the Rye. - Pauline Kael [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:55 PM PST - 15 comments

Your No. 2 favorite Christmas tradition
No Nativity scene is complete without the caganer - a figure caught in the act of taking a dump near the manger. (NSFW tag, ahoy!) The figurine (whose name translates as "the shitter") is an addition to the Nativity tableaus in the Catalonia region of Spain. Some interpret the caganer as a reminder that God can arrive on earth at any moment - and he doesn't care if he catches you with your britches down. [more inside]
posted by The demon that lives in the air at 7:35 PM PST - 64 comments

Oh, Canada. :(
Canada is planning to withdraw from the Kyoto treaty. CBC, BBC, AFP. The Herald Sun claims that this is to allow shale sands oil extraction.
posted by jaduncan at 6:06 PM PST - 121 comments

It Happened at the World's Fair
Century 21 Calling - Dreamily retro footage of the 1962 Seattle World's Fair, AKA the Century 21 Exposition, including a visit to the Bell Systems pavilion. A slice of space age science propaganda, the fair gave Seattle some of its most enduring landmarks in the form of the Space Needle and the Alweg Monorail, and, of course, brought Elvis to town.
posted by Artw at 5:50 PM PST - 35 comments

"And Krampus, Every One..."
Krampus. the Christmas Demon of Germanic folklore whose job it was to punish the kids on Santa's Naughty List has been featured here before. And while most people assume he is a better-left-forgotten relic of less gentle times (or less gentle places), he appears to be having a resurgence this year, being featured everywhere from Buzzfeed to FearNet to The Awl to NPR. He's getting a piece of the Christmas merchandise blitz and of course he has his own website. There is Krampus music and he even speaks in his own defense. And of course, he has a 'Folk Death Metal' band named after him.
But the biggest Krampus Kontroversy today is via travel/food TV maven Anthony Bourdain, who wrote and had animated a cautionary Krampus story for the holiday edition of his show, which was rejected by his bosses at the Travel Channel. Fortunately, you can still see it on YouTube. Happy Holidays!
posted by oneswellfoop at 5:40 PM PST - 30 comments

AN ANACONDA UNHINGES ITS MAGNIFICENT JAW. INSIDE, THE BRIGHT SCREEN OF A FREE IPAD RESTS JUST WITHIN ARM'S REACH
Daniel Manitou is ActualPerson084 on Twitter. He writes slices of life about marketing and unspeakable horror. He is a real person and not a metal ghost in a rainbow box.
posted by The Whelk at 5:22 PM PST - 44 comments

Lawyer Wants Someone Who Will Go "Above And Beyond"
Samir Zia Chowhan, sensing a prime opportunity in this down economy, set out to hire a secretary who could not only do the typing and filing, but could also engage in group sex with Chowhan and his law partner. The Illinois Supreme Court found that this is conduct unbecoming of an attorney and suspended Chowhan's law license.
posted by reenum at 5:08 PM PST - 34 comments

"Well, that went as well as could be expected..."
An awkward moment in politics. (YouTube) While campaigning in a New Hampshire diner, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney spotted local Bob Garon, a regular to the diner, eating his breakfast while wearing a Vietnam veteran's cap. “Vietnam veteran!” Romney greeted Bob, as he slid down onto the diner seat for a little chat. Unfortunately for Mitt, Bob was dining there that morning with his husband, and had to explain to Bob that his husband didn't deserve any of the benefits he fought for, and that the makers of the Constitution held marriage to be between a man and a woman. (Which doesn't really explain Mitt's great-grandfather Miles and his wives Hanna, Caroline, Catherine, Alice, and Emily, but stilll...)
posted by markkraft at 4:35 PM PST - 168 comments

How porny.
The phrase "metafilter" is 26.23% pr0n! [more inside]
posted by unSane at 4:26 PM PST - 50 comments

Flying the _____________ skies.
Comparing airlines' Airbus A380s. Seven commercial carriers fly the A380. Here's a look at how each has used the space aboard the superjumbo jet. [LATimes photogallery].
posted by VikingSword at 4:15 PM PST - 29 comments

Array Mbira
The Array Mbira is a lamellophone that uses the Wicki-Hayden isomorphic layout. Here are some amazing spectacular videos. (Bonus: the daxophone-like Array Nail Violin.)
posted by gray17 at 4:04 PM PST - 6 comments

Best Longform Reporting of 2011
Longform's Best of 2011 - Top 10 [more inside]
posted by vidur at 3:25 PM PST - 13 comments

Revolights
How do you make a bicycle more visible to drivers at night? Create a new wheel-based lighting system: Vimeo / Youtube. Kickstarter campaign is finished and funded, (details of the design at that page) and the company is hoping to have them on sale by March 2012. Via. More. Demo videos. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 2:53 PM PST - 47 comments

Blame Brit for pitch shift!
American Woman: Vocal fried. On the partial glottalization of speech in young English speaking American women.
posted by emilycardigan at 1:11 PM PST - 181 comments

Sex and the Single Sinéad
"So I admire those artists that are actually spiritually concerned. And have the balls to be concerned about that, and not concerned with fuckin’ George Bush’s dick. It’s very hard to sing when you’ve got someone’s dick in your mouth.” She shoots a mischievous grin before adding, 'I’ve tried.'" Sinéad O’Connor on the pope, her music, dating, buying condoms, and everything in between.
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:45 PM PST - 28 comments

Northern Calloway, Sesame Street's David: 1948 to 1990
Between February 1989 and May 1990, there were three significant deaths in the Sesame Street world. The first was Joe Raposo, a significant musician for Sesame Street and Electric Company. The last was Jim Henson, mourned by Big Bird, remembered by Frank Oz, and celebrated in song by many (from the St. John's Memorial, detailed here). The second person to die in this time period was Northern Calloway, Sesame Street's David. Unlike Joe and Jim, there were no television tribute to Northern's life and career on Sesame Street or Broadway. Instead, David, once a young, cool, urban guy, who was studying to be a lawyer while working at Mr. Hooper's storeand the initial romantic interest of Maria, left the show through a letter, read by Gordon. The story behind David is told below the fold. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:42 PM PST - 25 comments

Calling All Bond Villains
Project Utopia is the ultimate in super villain bases; a bespoke floating island that can travel the oceans. [more inside]
posted by DuchessProzac at 12:38 PM PST - 19 comments

Is Occupy really a meme?
Here are the best memes of 2011, according to Know Your Meme.  According to Time Magazine.
posted by JHarris at 12:10 PM PST - 98 comments

"Please, please, darling let us stop this."
Daniel Abraham's private letter from Genre to Mainstream. [Previously]
posted by Fizz at 11:58 AM PST - 46 comments

Hi Pirate!
"Hi Pirate! We got you! (In our database). You like torrents, don’t you? At least someone in your house does. It looks like you are from United States ..."
posted by jbickers at 11:50 AM PST - 68 comments

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, John Zorn Style
Always an enigma, John Zorn, winner of a MacArthur Fellowship, founder of avant garde record label Tzadik proponent of radical Jewish culture, leader of the hard core group Naked City, creator of the Masada songbook, and hundreds of other things, has, with the likes of Mark Ribot, Cyro Baptista and Mike Pattoon, released a heart-breakingly lovely Christmas record, A Dreamer's Christmas. [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski at 11:41 AM PST - 19 comments

Washington DC without the Metro
As a part of it's 35th anniversary, WMATA produced a study that investigated a hypothetical where Washington DC's Metro system disappeared and was replaced by car infrastructure. [more inside]
posted by grandsham at 11:23 AM PST - 56 comments

Battlestar Galatica's ending sucked and that's great
"Here, in my final post on the ending, I present the case that its final hour was the worst ending in the history of science fiction on the screen. This is a condemnation of course, but also praise, because my message is not simply that the ending was poor, but that the show rose so high that it was able to fall so very far." -Brad Templeton's dissection of the modern version of Battlestar Galatica and where it went wrong
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:28 AM PST - 275 comments

Amazon's Edsel
Tech pundits and consultants agree; Amazon's Kindle Fire is a huge disaster (New York Times), good for almost nothing (Marco Arment, creator of Instapaper) and a disappointingly poor user experience (Dr. Jakob Nielsen, usability expert). It's the Apple Newton, the Edsel, New Coke and McDonald’s Arch Deluxe in tablet form. By all accounts it should be doomed. So why is it selling so well? And why are user reviews so high? [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:07 AM PST - 167 comments

Abney Park
Abney Park has evolved from their goth beginnings into the "quintessential" steampunk band, complete with industrial dance and world music influences. Also, they created a pen & paper role playing games Airship Pirates based upon their song Airship Pirates .. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 9:51 AM PST - 14 comments

Pictures of Oliver North, John Wayne and Ronald Reagan adorning the walls.
Even the most seemingly entrenched powers can be undermined and weakened and replaced by other human beings. And if it's not happening, it's not because it's impossible, it's because we just haven't figured out the right way to do it. And so the challenge of figuring out the right way to do that, and the role that I can play in it, and the way in which I can use my skills and my knowledge and my experience in order to contribute to it, is a really important and invigorating challenge for me. It becomes a work of passion, a sort of labor of love.
As part of its "Conversations with History" series, UC Berkeley recently interviewed Glenn Greenwald, who discusses not only law and other issues, but his history and personal motivations for blogging. (1-hour SLYT) [more inside]
posted by swift at 9:48 AM PST - 5 comments

It's all in the hand movements
From Sociological Images, here's baby preacher, baby worshipper and baby rapper.
posted by Apropos of Something at 9:22 AM PST - 10 comments

Did Van Gogh have a color vision deficiency?
The Day I Saw Van Gogh's Genius in a New Light - Kazunori Asada explores a hypothesis: Did Van Gogh perhaps have a color vision deficiency?
posted by flex at 8:47 AM PST - 59 comments

"Medium atomic weights are available...Sapphire and Steel have been assigned."
"While most other notable British Science Fiction shows were over-ambitious in their special effects, with results ranging from the troubling (Doctor Who) to the disastrous (The Tomorrow People), Sapphire & Steel [ATV, 1979 - 1982] simply did not try to do anything the budget wouldn't allow. The result called for milking surreal horror for all it's worth, creating a show that is, while definitely not for everyone, quite capable of reducing so-inclined viewers to quivering little heaps behind the sofa."
posted by Iridic at 8:35 AM PST - 28 comments

The Conscious Catwoman
Julie Newmar Writes.
posted by hermitosis at 7:38 AM PST - 13 comments

24 hours of ambient STNG USS Enterprise engine noise (SLYT)
24 hours of ambient STNG USS Enterprise engine noise (SLYT) This is basically ocean sounds or rainstorm noise for geeks.
posted by rudhraigh at 7:06 AM PST - 96 comments

Some terracotta Lego figures were distorted during the making of this picture
3D street art terracotta Lego army. Here's how.
posted by twoleftfeet at 6:18 AM PST - 10 comments

print "And now for something completely %s" % 'different'
This month, Python won "Best Programming Language" in the Linux Journal's Reader's Choice Awards 2011. If you're not convinced, Python Facts explains little simple things that make Python great. [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 6:09 AM PST - 148 comments

Letter from Moscow
David Remnick: How far can the resistance to Vladimir Putin go? (SLNewYorker)
posted by beisny at 4:45 AM PST - 34 comments

December 11
They do indeed know it
There must be a recognition of the self in its relation to the profession one proposes. If we do declare our profession, we must also keep the epistemological awareness. That is, if we are our profession, we must know it. [more inside]
posted by curuinor at 11:17 PM PST - 10 comments

Beautiful Styling + Extreme Engineering = Creme de la Creme of Automotive Design from Jobs 1.0
"Harley Earl (video explaining a fraction of his role in shaping the modern American automobile [and his postwar vision of the future, full of ideas decades before their time, the Harley Earl Buick LeSabre]), the legendary automotive stylist, designed the F-88 under the belief that it would have outsold the Corvette and forever changed automotive history. Unfortunately Chevrolet, which produced more GM products than any of its other divisions, convinced the GM board of directors to cut the Oldsmobile project. The F-88 never went into production due to that sabotage combined with lukewarm Corvette sales. The 1954 Oldsmobile F-88 was strictly ever a dream car." (*Via, 1, 2) [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 10:10 PM PST - 27 comments

What if Sonic ran like an idiot?
An artist named Zac Gorman asked "What if Sonic Ran like an idiot?" The answer spawned this little gif. This inspired Nedroid to urge others to make Sonic look doofy. [more inside]
posted by hot_monster at 8:56 PM PST - 30 comments

John Updike's book reviews
All told, Updike has published more than a million words on books. ... In Picked-up Pieces (1975), Updike’s second collection of essays, he lists his rules for reviewing... Without coyness, Updike renders a stern judgment based on telling quotation. He builds toward his findings in plain sight, earning him an authority that is based on his presentation of a plausible case. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:48 PM PST - 6 comments

G+
Will G+ become Google's only product? Mike Elgin of Computerworld thinks so. Google+ launched on June 28th, and, as Elgin states, ".... since the launch, Google has "integrated" a dozen more major products into Google+, turning them into de facto features. This process starts with a minor integration and evolves into a major one."
posted by tomswift at 7:41 PM PST - 134 comments

Because it's, like, SO IMPORTANT to have the right font.
"Over the internet we yell at each other with ALL CAPS and emphasize with bold and italics, but where is sarcasm? Where is the nuance, the elegance? We say it is time for a change. It's time for a revolution. It's time for a new font style!"

Introducing the sarcastic font.
posted by zardoz at 5:41 PM PST - 88 comments

Come Along, McCrimmon
Missing Doctor Who episodes found at the 2011 Missing Believed Wiped event. [more inside]
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 5:10 PM PST - 22 comments

The Big Organ and Other Nightmares
The cautionary tale of the shiny new device that's smarter than its users and ends up taking over is pretty much cliché... but it took Australian pop musicker Gotye (prounced like Gaultier, if that helps) to apply it to a Lowrey Organ (the Cotillion D575, a vintage model he acquired for $100 and uses both in his recordings and concerts). Add retro-style animation, and you have something scary yet whimsical and truly "State of the Art". [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:51 PM PST - 19 comments

JJS the new DFW
John Jeremiah Sullivan is the working writer most frequently compared to David Foster Wallace (he's also sometimes compared to a young Tom Wolfe). He has a new essay collection out, and many of its pieces are available online (see inside). [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 3:25 PM PST - 35 comments

I didn't evolve from no flounder.
People And The Fish They Look Like
posted by empath at 3:11 PM PST - 25 comments

A Short Film In a Redwood Forest
Growing Is Forever they whispered.
posted by netbros at 2:26 PM PST - 12 comments

Slumdog Golfer
The Golf Course and the Slum
posted by vidur at 2:19 PM PST - 9 comments

Sunnier Than Sonny And Cher!
What is Pink Lady? In Japan they are remembered for a string of pop hits in the 70s, but Americans might remember them either from their disco single "Kiss In The Dark" or from an attempt to sell them to the US market in 1980 via a short-lived NBC variety show Pink Lady & Jeff (TVParty summary) with comedian Jeff Altman. (Opening). The show featured their Japanese hits, UFO, MONSTER (a bit more rock and roll), and SOS along with US hits like Boogie Wonderland, McArthur Park and the occasional guest star. (with encore) Also, Roy Orbison. Sadly, the show failed to break out and the two returned to Japan for a series of farewell concerts and retrospectives. Much, much more available at this charmingly retro, utterly exhaustive fan site devoted to them. Or just read the recaps. [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 1:25 PM PST - 33 comments

Led by the child who simply knew
Led by the child who simply knew The twin boys were identical in every way but one. Wyatt was a girl to the core, and now lives as one, with the help of a brave, loving family and a path-breaking doctor’s care.
posted by AwkwardPause at 1:14 PM PST - 81 comments

Twenty-Five Semi-Obscure Traditional Christmas Songs as Performed by Famous and Non-Famous People
Twenty-Five Semi-Obscure Traditional Christmas Songs as Performed by Famous and Non-Famous People: 1. The Coventry Carol. Celebrate the end of Christmas with this cheerful song about infants being murdered by a paranoid monarch. Actually quite beautiful. As performed by Sting, Joan Baez, John Denver, Nox Arcana, Loreena McKennitt, Manheim Steamroller, Alison Moyet, Annie Lennox and the African Children's Choir, Sufjan Stevens, Hayley Westenra, The Mediaeval Baebes, Dinah Shore, and the Westminster Cathedral Choir. [more inside]
posted by kittenmarlowe at 12:51 PM PST - 29 comments

Touch of Evil
Touch of Evil A NYT gallery of villainy featuring some of the best rouges of fiction.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:27 PM PST - 44 comments

Williamsburg Acrobatics
Seanna Sharpe's crazy acrobatics show 285 feet up the Williamsburg Bridge. (Not) for those afraid of heights or lycra. More Seanna here.
posted by The Discredited Ape at 11:49 AM PST - 54 comments

They Did it for Science
Experiment: To determine the efficacy and adaptability of pop-culture hook-up guides. Can a woman use the rules of "the game" on other women? And how will dudes respond to pick-up techniques that were designed to hustle ladies into bed? Kate Ray investigates what happens when a woman plays "the game" for Nerve, and she does it for Science (All links potentially NSFW, I mean come on its nerve, but most are either OK to OK-ish or obvious from context) [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 11:42 AM PST - 29 comments

IT BUURRRNNNSSSS
The Right (and Wrong) Way to Die When You Fall Into Lava - You'll never be able to watch Return of the King the same way again.
posted by Defenestrator at 11:24 AM PST - 128 comments

Manya, a comic book
Manya was a short comic series, created in the ’90s, by writer Jen Benka and artist Kris Dresden. The sporadically published series covered life from the point of view of young female living in the city. A couple of those early issues are now available online:
Marie is about a meeting, of sorts, between Manya and Marie Curie, the scientist who did pioneering research on radiation.

Falling deals with the aftermath of the death of a friend from AIDS.
Jitterbug did an interview with Benka and Dresden, where they discussed the creation of Manya and other works.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:23 AM PST - 5 comments

"Abolishing it [...] is no more feasible than eliminating agriculture or the auto industry."
"A statistical summary of women in prostitution is a chronicle of human wreckage—economic, physical, and chemical." GQ magazine's three-part investigation into the global sex trade is fascinating, if horrifying, reading: Part 1 (on sex clubs in the Phillipines), Part 2 (on human trafficking in Moldova), Part 3 (on sex tourism in Costa Rica).
posted by Catseye at 9:29 AM PST - 95 comments

BBC adaptation of Isaac Asimov's Original Foundation Trilogy
In 1973, the BBC aired an adaptation of Isaac Asimov's original Foundation trilogy, in eight one-hour parts. It is freely downloadable (or streamable) here.
posted by SpacemanStix at 8:55 AM PST - 24 comments

There's a law in New York state about driving with a live moose on the hood of your car
Here (from NPR's All Things Considered, 2008) is Woody Allen's classic stand-up routine, the Moose Story. A few more, from YouTube: Science Fiction Film, Eggs Benedict (unfortunately with distracting animation), on the Jack Paar show. MLYT [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 8:45 AM PST - 9 comments

His Own Stupid Money
Louis' Challenge: To Torrent or Not The Pirate Bay is discussing (under the link to down the torrent) of the thing Louis CK is asked: Please don't torrent this video. I paid for the whole thing with my own stupid money. [more inside]
posted by victors at 7:41 AM PST - 230 comments

Battle at Troll Bridge
Apple has adopted new tactics in its patent war against the handheld industry. Last summer, Apple has transferred patents to the patent troll Digitude Innovations, using a shell company operated by Digitude's primary investor, Altitude Capital Partners. In December, Digitude filed suit with the International Trade Commission alleging patent infringement by almost every mobile manufacturers except Apple. (pdf filing) [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 7:27 AM PST - 79 comments

If it's out there, it's in here.
Ding! Furniture stripping. Rock drills. Herbs. Die casting. Dumbwaiters. Conductive shoes. Vanity cases. Civil engineers. If it's out there, it's in here. [MLYT] [more inside]
posted by Orinda at 6:45 AM PST - 4 comments

IM MAKING PANCAKES FRESHER THAN A MAFUCKA
Nerdy white kid covers "Look at Me Now" in his kitchen, kills it.
posted by desjardins at 6:40 AM PST - 57 comments

Fictional characters, real voters.
Being a charismatic young leader himself, gifted in bringing together animals from all walks of life (some had even called him the first zebra king), Mufasa related to Clinton’s first term. Like the Clintons, Mufasa was also a passionate advocate for universal healthcare since witnessing the positive impact of Rafiki’s healing powers for the animal kingdom.
How Would They Vote is a US/Australia focused blog tracing the political awakenings and inclinations of characters from popular culture. Find out about Optimus Prime's anti-environmentalism, which of The Breakfast Club voted Dukakis, and what the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles really think of Herman Cain.
posted by rollick at 6:21 AM PST - 10 comments

Before and After Science
The History and Future of Computing an interactive timeline from the New York Times which crowdsources predictions. [more inside]
posted by gwint at 5:25 AM PST - 22 comments

"For many tiny, endangered languages, digital technology has become a lifeline."
Everyone Speaks Text Message: [NYTimes] "Is technology killing indigenous languages or saving them? Well, you may soon be able to text in N’Ko."
posted by Fizz at 5:06 AM PST - 6 comments

Why here, and not there?
Psychology Today handles The Big Question: Why Are We Here?
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:46 AM PST - 66 comments

Cool! Obama's face for lunch!
Normally I manage a sandwich, pieces of fruit and veg, a yoghurt and a carton of drink for my kids' lunchboxes. In some parts of the world, it seems, only mini sculptures of cartoon characters, piano keyboards and pictures of Obama made from seaweed will suffice. Want to join in? Turns out Youtube is a goldmine: next week, give your child Octopus sausages!. Or buy a book!
posted by Hartham's Hugging Robots at 3:28 AM PST - 20 comments

With me it's a full-time job.
Three decades on from the release of British Gangster classic Get Carter Michael Brady revisited the film's locations. [more inside]
posted by tigrefacile at 1:55 AM PST - 8 comments

December 10
More Zatoichi
Zatoichi (previously) is the story of a blind Japanese masseur; drifter (he also sometimes thinks of himself as a gangster, in a self-effacing way); uncanny gambler; and, master swordsman. The series is some 25 films long (not including the TV series), not including the 2003 American release with Takeshi Kitano playing the lead role, instead of Shintaro Katsu. [more inside]
posted by Vibrissae at 10:38 PM PST - 17 comments

Slugs: not as delicious as they seem!
NYTimes warns: Do not eat slugs! A 21-year old Australian man is seriously ill after ingesting two garden slugs on a dare. The causative organism is Angiostrongylus cantonensis which leads to eosinophilic meningitis. [more inside]
posted by genmonster at 8:27 PM PST - 65 comments

“I‘m not lying!”
This past August a murder charge was dismissed against Nga Truong, a young mother who had confessed to Worcester, MA Police interrogators in 2008 that she had smothered and killed her 13 month-old baby, Khyle. A judge later concluded that confession was coerced -- extracted in part by police "deception," "trickery and implied promises" -- and the case was dropped. (pdf). Her case raises questions: What coercive power do detectives have who are driven to extract confessions? Under what circumstances might someone admit to a crime they have not committed? WBUR (Boston's NPR station) investigated Truong's case and has an extensive report, Anatomy of a Bad Confession: Part One and Two [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:25 PM PST - 28 comments

No, no, no
The European Union said Friday that 26 of its 27 member countries are open to joining a new treaty tying their finances together to solve the euro crisis. Only Britain remains opposed, creating a deep rift in the union. In all, just 23 of the 27 EU countries signed on outright to draft a new treaty binding them to a uniform regime of deficit controls and budget regulation. Only one country said no: Britain. Three more say they are open to the idea. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 8:05 PM PST - 96 comments

Wim Wenders' "Until The End Of The World"
Until the End of the World was conceived over most of the ’80s, filmed on four continents (including video smuggled out of China), and foresaw a future abetted by such diversions as mobile viewing devices, proto-GPS and a highly sought-after contraption that records images for the blind. Starring William Hurt, Sam Neill, Solveig Dommartin, Jeanne Moreau and Max von Sydow among an international ensemble of actors, the film also skyrocketed to a $23 million budget and found its distributors — including Warner Bros. in the United States — requiring cuts that reduced it to barely a quarter of Wenders’s original vision. Later locked in at just under five hours, it’s the type of material that today would be a shoo-in for a cable miniseries that could probably win Emmys for everyone involved. Twenty years on, however, it’s relatively lost to the mainstream, with Wenders’s directors cut as yet unreleased outside two territories in Europe.
posted by Trurl at 7:27 PM PST - 50 comments

VIEW, DEDUCE AND IMAGINE. CREATE YOUR OWN TRUTH.
Wonderful Ambiguity. (some later images NSFW; or are they? [but seriously, some possibly even more nsfw than this]) "Sculptors" "today", what with their "plank piece I & II", "planking" back when it was "cool", before it was hip; there are at least 47 pages of wonderful, mercifully, none relating to "planking". [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 6:41 PM PST - 6 comments

Yuoo hefe-a nutheeng tu luse-a boot yuoor cheeens
Ereese-a yuoo preesuners ooff sterfeshun. Ereese-a yuoo vretched ooff zee iert. Fur joosteece-a thoonders cundemneshun. A better vurld's in burt. It is zee feenel cunffleect. Let iech stund in hees plece-a. Zee Interneshunele-a shell be-a zee hoomun rece-a.

BORK BORK BORK!

posted by jason's_planet at 6:34 PM PST - 25 comments

Will Wright's Next Game: Hivemind
Will Wright, of Sims and Simcity fame, now wants to have users use their personal data to shape the game playing experience in his new game, Hivemind.
posted by reenum at 6:25 PM PST - 29 comments

The Bourne Ultimatum with Unicorns
Carl Erik Rinsch‘s futuristic action thriller short The Gift. Other movies by Big Lazy Robot Studio. The Commercials of Carl Erik Rinsch. Also: The Hunt of the Unicorn.
posted by growabrain at 5:23 PM PST - 7 comments

He is almost your audience
Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river
You can hear the boats go by
You can spend the night beside her
And you know that she's half crazy
But that's why you want to be there [more inside]
posted by Apropos of Something at 5:15 PM PST - 30 comments

Getting a job in software development: A Reddit discussion round-up
Getting a job in software development: A Reddit discussion round-up A great round up of CS articles about getting a job in CS, then also links to info about CS concepts. [more inside]
posted by snow_mac at 4:53 PM PST - 62 comments

Blood Cards
Bloody hockey cards celebrate NHL enforcers
posted by MechEng at 3:18 PM PST - 10 comments

The 25 Funniest 'Damn You Autocorrect!' Entries of the Website's First Year
The 25 Funniest Autocorrects of the 'Damn You Autocorrect!' website's First Year anniversary. [Previously]
posted by ericb at 3:00 PM PST - 92 comments

Apparently so.
Are sex offenders and lads’ mags using the same language? [more inside]
posted by cmoj at 2:53 PM PST - 37 comments

Ubuntu jumps the shark?
Mint is a Debian-based Linux distro that is now the fourth most popular Operating System after Windows, Mac and Ubuntu, focusing on usability for those without previous GNU/Linux experience. With Ubuntu declining in popularity since the introduction of the tablet-oriented Unity desktop interface, Mint may be taking its old place.
posted by moorooka at 2:49 PM PST - 68 comments

BUY MORE STUFF. CONSUME. OBEY.
The Light Bulb Conspiracy is a documentary about disposable printers, light bulbs and everything else, investigating the implications of the business model and industrial design philosophy of Planned Obsolescence that drives and shapes our economy.
posted by loquacious at 2:24 PM PST - 43 comments

Playing with both cats and language
I can has language play: Construction of Language and Identity in LOLspeak. A presentation by Jill Vaughan and Lauren Gawne of the University of Melbourne at the Australian Linguistics Society annual conference 2011.
posted by bjrn at 11:48 AM PST - 29 comments

Effing Dykes Presents: What Lies Beneath (Her Fingernails)
Hiya lezzers! I’ve got marshmallows and gluten-free graham crackers, so… WHO WANTS TO HEAR A SCARY STORY?? [Text NSFW]
posted by the young rope-rider at 11:09 AM PST - 42 comments

Ark of the Covenant: 2½-1½-1½ Cubits
Maps of Biblical Prophecy and History. Also Protestant distribution, oil pipelines, Mars, and more.
posted by Winnemac at 10:57 AM PST - 14 comments

Santa's got backup
A sub-directorate of the Bureau of Special Christmas Operations (BOSCO), Santa's Little Secret Service is an Elvish security agency with the primary mission of ensuring the safety of Santa, Mrs. Claus and other high-value Christmas persons. The Service is separated into divisions focusing on personal protection, diplomatic protection, intelligence, and Christmas certainty operations.

When not protecting Santa, LSS can found assisting in protection of other high-value, Holiday persons, such as the Easter Bunny and Jesus with the help of their unique Candy Cane weapons.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:07 AM PST - 16 comments

Dance of the Glass Plum Fairy
Tchaikovsky's Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy played on a glass harp. [SLYT]
posted by shiu mai baby at 9:14 AM PST - 19 comments

Creature unFeature
Meet Creature: the biggest box-office flop of all time It had everything: nudity, gore and the most superfluous lesbian sex scene in the history of film. How could it possibly fail? Stuart Heritage goes behind the scenes of a real Hollywood disaster movie
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:14 AM PST - 76 comments

National Theatre actors read King James Bible - free podcasts
King James Bible readings by top UK actors - free podcasts London's National Theatre recently staged a series of live readings to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible and the glorious language that book contains. The actors taking part included Lindsay Duncan (Genesis), Patricia Routledge (Psalms), Maureen Lipman (Isaiah), Mark Gatiss (Luke) and Simon Russell Beale (Revelation). There's 12 readings in all, each of about 80 minutes, and the National has three available as free podcasts already, with the rest to follow soon. As a bonus, it's also offering Melvyn Bragg's talk on how the King James version was constructed and the main sources it drew on. I saw Bragg delivering this talk at the Cheltenham Literary Festival earlier this year, and it's well worth hearing.
posted by Paul Slade at 8:48 AM PST - 8 comments

Flattire, or Whamsy
In 2007, an Israeli cable station produced a show that parodied kid's educational tv with over-the-top racism, sexism, you-name-it-ism--kind of what South Park would be like if it were less restrained and tasteful. Toffee and the Gorilla was, apparently, unsuccessful and short-lived. YOUTUBE. NSFW. NSFHome either. Here's a non-youtube article about the show. [more inside]
posted by hexatron at 8:41 AM PST - 13 comments

Quivera, a fairly complete Unicode font
𝑯𝒆𝒓𝒆 𝒊𝒔 𝑸𝒖𝒊𝒗𝒆𝒓𝓪, 𝓪 𝒇𝒓𝒆𝒆 𝑻𝒓𝒖𝒆𝑻𝒚𝒑𝒆 𝒇𝒐𝒏𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝓪𝒕 𝒄𝒐𝒏𝒕𝓪𝒊𝒏𝒔 10,000 𝒄𝒉𝓪𝒓𝓪𝒄𝒕𝒆𝒓𝒔. 𝓘𝓯 𝔂𝓸𝓾 𝓱𝓪𝓿𝓮 𝓲𝓽 𝓲𝓷𝓼𝓽𝓪𝓵𝓵𝓮𝓭, 𝔂𝓸𝓾 𝓬𝓪𝓷 𝓻𝓮𝓪𝓭 𝓽𝓱𝓲𝓼 𝓶𝓮𝓼𝓼𝓪𝓰𝓮 (𝔲𝔫𝔩𝔢𝔰𝔰 𝔶𝔬𝔲'𝔯𝔢 𝔲𝔰𝔦𝔫𝔤 𝕮𝔥𝔯𝔬𝔪𝔢).
"Here is Quivira, a free TrueType font that contains 10,000 characters. If you have it installed, you can read this message (unless you're using Chrome)." [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 7:45 AM PST - 111 comments

Learning Space at Open University
Try one of over 600 courses available through the Open University's Learning Space. Get to know the meaning behind the making of kente cloth of Ghana or learn the mathematical modelling involved in analysing skid marks. Lose yourself in art and design or simply learn a new old language. All you need is a device with a browser and internet access. Bonus: OU on the BBC's Frozen Planet series
posted by infini at 7:34 AM PST - 8 comments

Very last year
Last Year Next Year This Year New Year [co-starring Debbie Harry] is a follow up to the classic 2006 John Roberts video The Christmas Tree [previously] both starring your Mom. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:57 AM PST - 10 comments

Reader, have you ever seen a fight?
On 10 December 1821 the radical essayist and journalist William Hazlitt set out on a journey from London to Hungerford where, the next day, he witnessed a bare-knuckle boxing match between Bill Neate, a butcher from Bristol, and Tom 'The Gas-man' Hickman. Hazlitt's account of the event – 'The Fight' – was published in 1822, and is regarded as a pioneering work of sports journalism and an insightful study of popular culture.
posted by mattn at 5:16 AM PST - 6 comments

You must be yolking...
"So, if the probability of finding an egg with two yolks is 1/1000 - then to find the likelihood of discovering four in a row you simply multiply the probabilities together four times. One thousand to the power of four brings us to the grand total of one trillion...

If true that would mean the event that occurred in Jen's kitchen was a trillion-to-one event. But is it true? No is the short answer."

posted by Petrot at 4:15 AM PST - 38 comments

I put in a quadratic and all I got was this dumb parabola
Google will now graph! Google Post description. Now... examples! sin(x), exp(x), x^2+2x+1. We're not nearly done... [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:12 AM PST - 36 comments

BoingBoing's Xeni Jardin on her breast cancer diagnosis
I live online as much as I live offline. Often, I move around in the world staring into a device as I walk, sharing bits of one realm with the other. The morning I went in for my first mammogram, I felt nervous. I would tweet this new thing, like I do with lots of new things, and make the unknown and new feel less so. Maybe by doing so, I thought while I was driving, other women like me who'd never done this would also feel like it was less weird, less scary, more normal and worth doing without hesitation. I'd crack some 140-character jokes. I'd make fun of myself and others. I would Instagram my mammogram.
posted by cgc373 at 2:41 AM PST - 18 comments

In Plutocratic Russia, Kremlin Tweets You
There were thousands of Russians protesting the widespread ballot stuffing discovered during the elections last sunday. Russian police arrested hundreds of protesters who had gathered in Moscow’s Triumfalnaya Square, including Alexei Navalny. Protestors raised awareness using Twitter hashtags like #триумфальная (Triumfalnaya), but pro-Kremlin spammers were prepared to drown them out using 2000 automated twitterbots they'd created earlier this year. (related, recently)
posted by jeffburdges at 12:16 AM PST - 27 comments

December 9
New Evangelicals
New Evangelicals "Though public support for both major political parties is very low, one group of voters is usually exempted from this malaise: evangelicals. It’s assumed that at least these “values voters” are getting what they want. But we should look more carefully."
posted by tomswift at 10:02 PM PST - 60 comments

23 1/2 hours
23 and 1/2 hours: What is the single best thing we can do for our health?
posted by garlic at 8:36 PM PST - 55 comments

Please don't use them for more than 18 things...
Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Chicken Wings (SLYT)
posted by Godwin Interjection at 8:06 PM PST - 29 comments

Domenico Scarlatti's keyboard sonatas
Combining the architectural grace of Bach with the sprightly melodicism of Mozart, the 555 keyboard sonatas (3 MB PDF) of Domenico Scarlatti are a cornucopia of exquisite music*. The first musician to record all of them was the colorful Scott Ross - who died of AIDS-related pneumonia at the age of 38. Here he performs one of the masterpieces, K.209, in Le Château de Maisons-Laffitte on a harpsichord built by David Ley. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:21 PM PST - 29 comments

Skip breakfast and have a real meal later - intermittent fasting
Intermittent fasting can affect insulin sensitivity. And a new eating style has developed around this idea. Skip breakfast and enjoy big meals late in the day instead of what Martin Berkhan (fitness trainer with attitude bigger than his muscles - be warned) called kindergarten meals 6 times a day. [more inside]
posted by Listener at 4:44 PM PST - 86 comments

Set Phasers to VALUE!
Dodd’s Furniture and Mattress of Victoria, Canada sells you mattresses via star trek (and superman and batman and...)
posted by The Whelk at 4:26 PM PST - 20 comments

Nothing says Christmas like dancing to Mariah Carey half-naked wearing cardboard presents as pants.
The Royal Navy's HMS Ocean is coming home for Christmas. [SLYT]
posted by zennish at 3:58 PM PST - 26 comments

A Wizard's Staff Has A Knob On The End
The Rules of Magic. Every fantasy saga has its own rules for magic, and its own explanations for how the magical arts work. Where does magic come from? Who can use magic, and how? io9 has compiled a list of the rules of magic in 50 fantasy sagas. (jpg)
posted by zarq at 3:10 PM PST - 63 comments

Things go BOOM!
Devastating Explosions, at the Touch of a Button
posted by EvaDestruction at 1:33 PM PST - 73 comments

Mega audacious
MegaUpload is currently being portrayed by the MPAA and RIAA as one of the world’s leading rogue sites. But top music stars including P Diddy, Will.i.am, Alicia Keys, Snoop Dogg and Kanye West disagree and are giving the site their full support in a brand new song. TorrentFreak caught up with the elusive founder of MegaUpload, Kim Dotcom, who shrugged off “this rogue nonsense” and told us he wants content owners to get paid. “It works like an ad blocker but instead of blocking ads we show ads coming from Megaclick, our ad network,” says Kim. “This way we will generate enough ad revenue to provide free premium services and licensed content so that our users can have it for free.
posted by finite at 1:29 PM PST - 73 comments

Sixteen Rabbits and Three Tabby Cat Legs
Possibly NSFW. The case of the Rabbet Woman (also known as Mary Toft) is a particularly interesting one. Toft, on the advice of an unnamed accomplice, decided to engage in a scam which would enter her into the annals of history: she pretended to give birth to a series of seventeen baby rabbits and three tabby-cat legs, apparently by pushing their dead corpses up her vagina when no one was looking. Over the course of her fraud, she managed to convince many of the leading scientific and medical lights of the day that she was, in fact, giving birth to these rabbits (and three tabby-cat legs), including John Howard (pdf) (and more, also pdf), Cyriacus Ahlers (one of the King's surgeons), Nathaniel St. Andre (Anatomist to the King), Samuel Molyneux, and Sir Richard Manningham, male midwife to the Queen. Sir Richard Manninghan (Man Midwife!), although originally taken in by the fraud, eventually discovers the truth when a porter admits that he had been going to the market to buy baby rabbits for Toft. His Diary provides a pretty good summary of the case. When the fraud was discovered, Toft was charged, although the charges were eventually dropped; more lasting were the effects on some of the medical professionals, whose reputations were permanently ruined. You can read a nice summary in A Cabinet of Curiosities (google books). The case of the Rabbet Woman took the English world by storm. Scores of pamphlets--in this case the 18th century equivalent to tabloids--circulated, as the public devoured case depositions, scientific publications, satirical doggerel, and semi-erotic prints of rabbits bursting forth from Toft's nether regions (sanitized prints here)*. (previously (pay special attention to the comments), previously) [more inside]
posted by kittenmarlowe at 12:48 PM PST - 91 comments

Shut up, legs!
Every year, on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, cyclists in Pittsburgh gather to ride the city's most difficult hills in The Dirty Dozen. [more inside]
posted by god hates math at 12:14 PM PST - 43 comments

Ye Olde Moneyball
"The time has passed when the public will any longer swallow the palpable falsehood that a home run is no better than a scratch single." (PDF) Before Brad Pitt; before Michael Lewis, before Billy Beane; before Bill James; and long, long, before the Society for American Baseball Research, there was F.C. Lane. [more inside]
posted by mrgrimm at 11:38 AM PST - 6 comments

Federal Reserve unable to account for 1 to 8 TRILLION dollars.
In August Bloomberg News Reported Secret 1.2 Trillion Dollar Loan To Banks. How much "secret" money was printed and given to the banks? Congressman Dennis Kucinich accuses the Federal Reserve of secretly giving domestic and international banks nearly 8 trillion dollars. Ben Bernanke denies. John Stewart educates and satirizes in the first segment of his show. Congressman Alan Grayson grills the (apparently clueless) Federal Reserve Inspector General regarding their accounting.
posted by noaccident at 10:49 AM PST - 107 comments

the five best toys of all time
"Here at GeekDad we review a lot of products — books, toys, gadgets, software — and I know it’s impossible for most parents to actually afford all of the cool stuff that gets written up... [W]hile we love telling you about all the cool stuff that’s out there, I understand that as parents we all have limited budgets and we sometimes need help narrowing down our wishlists. So to help you out, I’ve worked really hard to narrow down this list to five items that no kid should be without. All five should fit easily within any budget, and are appropriate for a wide age range so you get the most play out of each one. These are time-tested and kid-approved!"
posted by flex at 10:03 AM PST - 123 comments

Nerd like me
Coming Out of the Black Nerd Closet: A Meditation
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:01 AM PST - 45 comments

Overthinkin' it ...
Baked Beanz [SLVimeo] [via]
posted by scruss at 9:23 AM PST - 10 comments

From A Watch to Zed's dead, baby. Zed's dead.
Pulp Fiction in Chronological Order (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:11 AM PST - 125 comments

"The bride and groom seal the deal as the crowd goes wild."
Bastion (previously) is an indie action/RPG game that has been called one of the best games of 2011. One of the things that makes it distinctive is the pervasive narrative, delivered by Logan Cunningham (bottom of page). When one fan of the game was recently planning his nuptials, he reached out to the game's developer ... and that resulted in a one-of-a-kind ceremony.
posted by jbickers at 8:41 AM PST - 17 comments

And Your Bird Can Fly
Twitter has launched an entirely overhauled version of Twitter, today, including a new version of its website, its apps, and TweetDeck (now native on Mac, rather than using Adobe AIR!). You currently need to download the latest version of the Android or iPhone app to see the new version of the website. Dan Frommer offers some good first impressions.
posted by gilrain at 7:30 AM PST - 68 comments

Deviation String Quartet
On 13 October, Red Bull Music Academy went to London for Revolutions in Sound, filling each pod of the London Eye with a different musical act. One of them was Benji B with special guests The Deviation String Quartet and MC Judah. Here's a video of an hour of mixing UK garage and hip hop with live strings.
posted by sveskemus at 7:26 AM PST - 12 comments

#Mockupy
On the heels of Occupy Wall Street's "Law-And-Order Problem", last night #OWS protestors occupied the set of Law & Order. [more inside]
posted by mhoye at 6:55 AM PST - 114 comments

"For you see Rubin, I am not furshlugginer ordinary Batboy!..."
Here is the classic story "Batboy and Rubin" from Mad Magazine #8. (Another source.) And here is the story adapted to animation 57 years later on Batman: The Brave and the Bold.
posted by JHarris at 6:54 AM PST - 28 comments

Friday Fun: Theme Hotel
Theme Hotel If you build it, they will stay the night. But you may want to turn off the music. Fun, addicting little "Sim Hotel" game, reminiscent of SimTower.
posted by PapaLobo at 6:43 AM PST - 23 comments

Can you give us a hand with a little research?
Amazon has recently declared that tomorrow is Price Check day. If you go into a brick and mortar retail store with Amazon’s new Price Check App on your smart phone, and scan a barcode with the location settings active, and then report back to Amazon on the price of that product, Amazon will deduct $5 from your online purchase of that product. Amazon claims it’s trying to keep prices low for consumers, but others attribute the move to a less innocuous agenda. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan at 6:36 AM PST - 143 comments

"The medium shouldn’t define who is media"
An Oregon judge has ruled that a Montana blogger is not eligible for the legal protections afforded to journalists, letting stand a $2.5 million defamation verdict. At the end of the Ars Technica article there's a link to a Forbes article that contains some more details and the text of an email that didn't help the blogger's case.
posted by veedubya at 4:23 AM PST - 53 comments

Cottage of the weird sisters
With the death of the childless Queen Elizabeth I in 1603, the son of Mary Queen of Scots and the reigning King of Scotland became next in line for succession to the English throne. On 11 July of that year the crowns of Scotland and England were united as King James VI of Scotland became King James I of England. The Union of the Crowns was made possible by the the fact that the James VI was protestant, married and had healthy children – heirs to the throne. The English were also comforted by the fact that the Scottish King was a scholar. Among other literary accomplishments, he had authored a number of books on witchcraft. Written in the Socratic form of a dialogue, Dæmonologie presented a wide-ranging discussion of witchcraft, necromancy, possession, demons, were-wolves, fairies and ghosts. [more inside]
posted by three blind mice at 4:09 AM PST - 39 comments

Bright Lights for Christmas
Holiday Shopping Guide: All Gizmo Everything
posted by rollick at 3:33 AM PST - 11 comments

The stench of lobbying and corruption
Britain’s secretive lobbying system - one company, Bell Pottinger which has had several more than slightly controversial clients has been exposed boasting that they can influence the British Prime Minister.
Among other briefs they have been advising the despotic Uzbekistan Government - reforms need not be fast. They have also been found to have been editing wiikipedia using up to 20 different accounts.
More on lobbying and a list of relevant related links
posted by adamvasco at 2:09 AM PST - 13 comments

Nipplepotamus, and other Cultural Signposts
The A.V. Club's Annual Band Name Retrospective.
posted by Navelgazer at 12:59 AM PST - 27 comments

Is it organic?
Have a cup of coffee with David Lynch.
posted by vrakatar at 12:37 AM PST - 30 comments

December 8
Immaterial girls
Catalog features models with sculpted bodies. A growing confectionary of kit for processing human bodies ( [YouTube]: Estimating body shape under clothing, Parametric Reshaping of Human Bodies in Images, Data-Driven Enhancement of Facial Attractiveness), prefigures a Barbie apocalypse of supernormal stimuli and body image disorders.
posted by 0rison at 11:58 PM PST - 28 comments

Innocent, In a Way
Innocent, in a way Spanish artist Alberto Mielgo paints a portrait of porn star Michelle Anne Sinclair "Belladonna." Single link Vimeo with nudity.
posted by letitrain at 11:09 PM PST - 35 comments

Not Even A Nibble
Don't castrate lambs with your teeth.
posted by Ideefixe at 9:25 PM PST - 53 comments

Solid Sunlight
Libyan Desert Glass is strewn over an area of hundreds of square kilometers in the Great Sand Sea, a region desolate even by the high standards of the Sahara. As one account of a recent trip to acquire Libyan Desert Glass puts it: "Out there, death sits on your shoulder like a vulture." While some would have you believe that Libyan Desert Glass is evidence of ancient atomic warfare, it is probably evidence of a massive meteorite or comet explosion nearly thirty million years ago, similar to Tunguska, but much bigger. The stone age Aterian peoples made tools from it, but the remoteness and inhospitality of the Great Sand Sea has ensured that until recent times it has mostly been undisturbed. However, a breast ornament buried in Tutankhamen's tomb has a scarab made from Libyan Desert Glass, the only piece made of the material to have been found by Egyptologists, and how Tutankhamen's jewelers acquired it has remained a mystery. Until now. [Previously]
posted by Kattullus at 9:01 PM PST - 38 comments

Human GPS
"Piloting London’s distinctive black cabs (taxis to everyone else) is no easy feat. To earn the privilege, drivers have to pass an intense intellectual ordeal, known charmingly as The Knowledge. Ever since 1865, they’ve had to memorise the location of every street within six miles of Charing Cross – all 25,000 of the capital’s arteries, veins and capillaries. They also need to know the locations of 20,000 landmarks – museums, police stations, theatres, clubs, and more – and 320 routes that connect everything up." Acquiring The Knowledge changes the brains of those who acquire it.
posted by vidur at 7:15 PM PST - 73 comments

Michael Tolkin's "The Rapture"
(MAJOR SPOILERS EVERYWHERE) [Michael Tolkin's The Rapture] is one of the most radical, infuriating, engrossing, challenging movies I've ever seen. There are people who love it and many who hate it, but few who can remain on the sidelines. ... Movies are often so timid. They try so little, and are content with small achievements. "The Rapture" is an imperfect and sometimes enraging film, but it challenges us with the biggest idea it can think of, the notion that our individual human lives do have actual meaning on the plane of the infinite. - Roger Ebert
posted by Trurl at 7:15 PM PST - 54 comments

Obion County, TN home burns
Obion County, TN home burns while South Fulton firefighters watch, again. The City of South Fulton FD offers surrounding Obion County residents firefighting services for a $75 annual subscription, but not all county residents choose to subscribe (previously).
The last time this happened, the city of South Fulton, Tennessee, received a lot of heat nationwide for this policy. That was more than a year ago but nothing has changed.

The mayor said it comes down to simple business. If they don't collect fire fees, the fire department can't survive and if they make exceptions to the rule, no one will ever pay the fee.
Obion County lacks a fire department (pdf) and county residents, who do not pay taxes for firefighting, are provided firefighting services through local cities and towns, either by annual subscription or a per-call fee.
posted by 6550 at 6:37 PM PST - 227 comments

Contra as Wolfenstein
8bit Killer is an interpretation of an archetypal 8bit sidescroller within a 2.5 dimensional FPS engine. It's short, fun, and free. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 6:01 PM PST - 9 comments

A collaborative genealogy of spirituality.
"Frequencies is an experiment. The experiment is simple: Ask scholars, writers, and artists what they think of when they think of the word spirituality." So began a project that's now 71 entries strong. Every weekday, Frequencies features scholars and artists on such topics as Burning Man, espresso, highways, Philip K. Dick, companion animals, and Dr. Oz. [more inside]
posted by farishta at 6:01 PM PST - 5 comments

Kitsch, chic and swank
Ultra Swank - Retro Living and Design from the 50s, 60s and 70s.
posted by unliteral at 5:46 PM PST - 8 comments

You kind of go like “Hey, could I pitch something?” And they are like “Yes, this is not a bad time. Go for it.”
How Does A Pixar Short Film Get Made?
posted by minifigs at 3:44 PM PST - 12 comments

Monique Van Der Awesome
Monique van der Vorst has won two silver medals in the Paralympics for Handcycling. She was the first handcycle athlete to win the 2009 Ironman world championship. But after being struck by a bike while training in 2010 she began doing something she had not done since she was 13: walking. Not only is she walking but she is eyeing the 2016 Olympics where she hopes to compete as a cyclist.
posted by munchingzombie at 3:01 PM PST - 18 comments

"She's a rap artist—and she's pretty fucking dope."
Meet Wheelchair Sports Camp, a "psuedo-hip-hop trio from Denver fronted by Kalyn Heffernan, a 56-pound wheelchair-bound badass emcee with CRIP LIFE tattooed on her stomach," who sometimes cover "My Vagina Ain't Handicapped." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 2:57 PM PST - 9 comments

War Criminals in training!
The International Committee of the Red Cross is deeply concerned about six hundred million people who commit war crimes... virtually. All those people out there playing video games involving shooting? Today's gamers may become tomorrow's war criminals. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 2:50 PM PST - 61 comments

Two mind-blowing revelations for the price of one!
Energetic consequences of thermal and nonthermal food processing. Or, as discussed by Discover Magazine, Why Calorie Counts Are Wrong: Cooked Food Provides a Lot More Energy. (N.B. second link references a video of house mice eating a baby albatross alive.)
posted by d. z. wang at 2:46 PM PST - 36 comments

Secretary Sebelius Makes History
For the first time ever, the Health and Human Services secretary publicly overruled the Food and Drug Administration, refusing Wednesday to allow emergency contraceptives to be sold over the counter, including to young teenagers. [more inside]
posted by DWRoelands at 1:46 PM PST - 323 comments

Medical Patents
Prometheus Labs v. Mayo Clinic has the potential to make decision procedures about medical treatment patentable. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 1:36 PM PST - 29 comments

Jerry Robinson, Batman artist and Joker creator, RIP
Jerry Robinson , Batman artist and creator of the Dark Knight's arch-nemesis The Joker, died yesterday in his sleep at the age of 89. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 1:09 PM PST - 21 comments

he has apparently been forgiven
Ed Askew lost his martin tipple on a railroad platform 20 years ago. In 2009, someone returned it. Now he can play his classic freak-folk songs on it again. Though some of his best don't require any live accompaniment at all. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:00 PM PST - 13 comments

Quite Simply, Wonderful.
David Attenborough sings What a Wonderful World (slyt)
posted by Another Fine Product From The Nonsense Factory at 12:36 PM PST - 16 comments

Killing techies, the Malaysian way
Malaysia is proposing a Computing Professionals Bill, based on the Registration of Engineers Act [.PDF] which makes it mandatory for all practicing "computing professionals" to be registered with a government body. Dealing in the IT industry, including sending “proposals, plans, designs, drawings, schemes, reports, studies or others to be determined by the Board to any person or authority in Malaysia” without being registered will incur a fine not exceeding RM20,000 (~US$6380) or 6 months in jail. Malaysian IT professionals and geeks are up in arms, and similarities have been drawn to Nigeria's law on computing professionals.
posted by divabat at 12:34 PM PST - 26 comments

Declawing Cats Criminalized in Israel
"On November 28th Israel’s legislature unanimously passed a bill that outlaws the declawing of cats, except for certain medical reasons, making it a crime punishable by up to one year in prison and a fine of about $20,000."

Reaction has been overwhelmingly positive.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 12:27 PM PST - 89 comments

Horror Stories From Tough-Love Teen Homes
Kathryn Joyce looks at unregulated Christian homes for troubled children.
posted by reenum at 11:30 AM PST - 39 comments

Great gifts for (other people's) Kids!
The Seven Worst Gifts for Children! This year’s list of the worst toys is brought to you by plastics, those bright synthetic polymers that threaten to overtake the living rooms of middle-class parents.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 10:48 AM PST - 89 comments

Shooting at Virginia Tech
Two shot at Virginia Tech the gunman is still on the run. Virginia Tech was the site of the largest shooting by a single gunman in 2007. Yesterday and today campus officials were in DC appealing a $55,000 fine for failing to warn students quickly enough.
posted by SuzySmith at 10:43 AM PST - 109 comments

Bright Light, Big Scoop
AP reporters Adam Goldman and Matt Apuzzo tracked down a former CIA secret prison in the basement of a a Romanian government building on a busy street in residential Bucharest. The black site, code named Bright Light, was used as a makeshift prison for the CIA's most valuable detainees from 2003-2006, including Khalid Sheik Mohammad, the mastermind of 9-11, Abu Faraj al-Libi, who unwilling provided information that would later identify Osama bin Laden's trusted courier and led to the discovery of bin Laden's compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, as well as other senior al-Qaida operatives. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 9:42 AM PST - 55 comments

Lefties want comedy, right wingers like work
Republicans vs. Democrats TV survey results: Lefties want comedy, right wingers like work. EW commissions a survey of conservative and liberal television preferences. "In the findings, “sarcastic” media-savvy comedies and morally murky antiheroes tend to draw Dems. While serious work-centered shows (both reality shows and stylized scripted procedurals), along with reality competitions, tend to draw conservatives."
posted by benbenson at 9:34 AM PST - 80 comments

Dead Can Dance, Toward The Within
Toward the Within is the only official live album of the eclectic music group, Dead Can Dance. Recorded in one take in November of 1993, the performance was later released as an album and video. The latter includes short interviews with the heads of the group, Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry, interspersed with the songs.

Video track list: [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:17 AM PST - 44 comments

Trial of the Will
Trial of the Will. "Reviewing familiar principles and maxims in the face of mortal illness, Christopher Hitchens has found one of them increasingly ridiculous: 'Whatever doesn’t kill me makes me stronger.' Oh, really? Take the case of the philosopher to whom that line is usually attributed, Friedrich Nietzsche, who lost his mind to what was probably syphilis. Or America’s homegrown philosopher Sidney Hook, who survived a stroke and wished he hadn’t. Or, indeed, the author, viciously weakened by the very medicine that is keeping him alive." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 9:10 AM PST - 27 comments

So... What Exactly Did The Ducks Do?
Canards Sauvages performed live by Camille. (almostSLYT)
posted by davidjmcgee at 8:51 AM PST - 7 comments

I've got a little biscuit tin to keep your panties in
'To celebrate the release of the remastered Throbbing Gristle back catalogue Rough Trade are proud to announce a unique intimate Q&A evening with Chris Carter & Cosey Fanni Tutti (37 minute Soundcloud streaming audio) discussing the rich and unique history of TG.' [more inside]
posted by item at 8:41 AM PST - 8 comments

I'm looking at a new Jersey
I come from Bankers and Businessmen, New Jersey. The dividing line between north and south New Jersey is the Driscoll Bridge according to one theory. The Sports Fan rule applies a hypothetical line between where NY Giant fandom ends and Philadelphia Eagle fanaticism begins. Under the Sandwhich conjecture, South Jersey's northern border is where people stop eating hoagies for lunch and start eating subs. New Jersey is too nuanced for simple binary categorization. Rigorous tests of the competing theories produce contradictory results (Monmouth County is part of South Jersey under the Driscoll theory and North Jersey using Sports Fan methodology.) Throwing out the ineffectiveness of northern and southern classifications, a recent Rutgers graduate and current state employee has produced a controversial and highly accurate visualization of a new Jersey, though some may be offended.
posted by otto42 at 8:35 AM PST - 73 comments

The Victorian Hugos
The Victorian Hugos: "Over the next several months, in open imitation of Jo Walton's splendid "Revisiting the Hugos" series at Tor.com, I'll be reviewing science fiction and fantasy works from 1885 to 1930 and deciding which novels and short works would have received the Hugo had a Worldcon been held that year and which novels and short works should have received the Hugo–often not the same thing." 1885 1886 1887 1888
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 8:20 AM PST - 12 comments

You Say You Want a Devolution?
Everything feels old. There have been no radical changes in style, culture, art, and fashion over the last 20 years—a stark contrast to every other two decade period going all the way back into the 19th-century, Kurt Anderson argues in Vanity Fair. Every 20 year period marked a drastic and unmistakable shift in cultural appearance with the exception of our current quarter century. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 8:15 AM PST - 258 comments

Australian Exceptionalism
Australian Exceptionalism "Let that phrase roll off your tongue... now stop laughing if you can." [more inside]
posted by modernnomad at 8:06 AM PST - 61 comments

"This is going green, 1949 style."
"The good, the bad, and the ugly of LA." Ice Cube nerds out about the Eames, brought to you by Pacific Standard Time.
posted by functionequalsform at 6:58 AM PST - 15 comments

it’s hard to see much of anything through the colour
Indie game visionary Terry Cavanagh (Prev., Prev.) has freely released his cooperative puzzle game At A Distance. Unlike most multiplayer FP games, here two player sit side-by-side, lost in a world of color and aid one another to solve the puzzle.
posted by griphus at 6:58 AM PST - 5 comments

Robert Paul Wolff's "The Philosopher's Stone."
Robert Paul Wolff is most famous as the author of In Defense of Anarchism and as the "only person on the face of the earth who has read, cover to cover, Immanuel Kant's Inaugural Dissertation, Karl Marx's doctoral dissertation, and Newt Gingrich's doctoral dissertation." His memoir has also drawn considerable interest. But as a part of his blogging he has habitually offered "micro-tutorials" to encourage his readers to re-acquaint themselves with the classics of what might be called the Heroic Age in the study of society -- the writings of Marx, Freud, Weber, Ricardo, Mannheim, and others. His newest micro-tutorial, on Durkheim's Suicide, begins today.
posted by anotherpanacea at 6:38 AM PST - 25 comments

A Pirate's Life
A hand-drawn animation by Kijek / Adamski for the song A Pirate's Life by We Cut Corners. Don't miss the fascinating "making of" video.
posted by OmieWise at 5:21 AM PST - 11 comments

Hidden Meanings : Datamining Early English Print
Datamining Shakespeare --- Othello is a Shakespearean tragedy: when the hero makes a terrible mistake of judgment, his once promising world is led into ruin. Computer analysis of the play, however, suggests that the play is a comedy or, at least, that it does the same things with words that comedies usually do. On October 26, 2011, Folger Shakespeare Library Director Michael Witmore discussed his recent work in Shakespeare studies which combines computer analysis of texts, linguistics, and traditional literary history. Taking the case of Shakespeare's genres as a starting point, Witmore shows how subtle human judgments about the kinds of plays Shakespeare wrote — were they comedies, histories or tragedies? — are connected to frequent, widely distributed features in the playwright's syntax, vocabulary, and diction. (approx. 30 minute lecture.) [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 4:47 AM PST - 29 comments

Sharing is caring, isn't it?
On the 6th of December 2011, as has been traditional for the past 9 decades since Finland's Independence, the President, Tarja Halonen and her spouse, Dr Pentti Arajarvi host what is known as the Linnan juhlat or Castle Ball, an extremely popular televised reception for the notables of the nation. Along with the usual dignitaries, the President is also permitted to select invitees based on merit - entertainers, athletes, individuals - whom she feels have been in the news in the past year. This year Peter and Teija Vesterbacka also were invited due to Peter Vesterbacka's work as the CMO of Rovio. Teija Vesterbacka wore a red dress for the evening that had design concepts from one of the birds in the mobile game Angry Birds. Highlighted in the Finnish news by the very select group of photographers permitted entry to this exclusive event, it was when the photograph of this dress went viral among global MSM that the angry birds began to fly.
posted by infini at 3:53 AM PST - 29 comments

Look up in the sky, it's Rube Goldborg
Here is one of the longer anime robot transformation sequences out there, clocking in at about 3 minutes and 28 seconds. SLYT [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 2:47 AM PST - 43 comments

Sitting on the old gum tree
Laughing Kookaburra birds: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:37 AM PST - 16 comments

"Wheelchair Hell"
"Imagine 12 men in a dorm all in diapers and sitting in their own feces," he says. "It smelled like a combination of what people had for lunch that day and pus from people's open wounds. I've been in a wheelchair now for three years, and the jail is by far the worst place I've ever seen for a disabled person." -- L.A. Weekly on "Wheelchair Hell" in the L.A. County Men's Jail
posted by bardic at 2:34 AM PST - 42 comments

Beyond the Border
The U.S.-Canada Beyond the Border agreement is wide-ranging in its impact. Indeed, Prime Minister Harper referred to it Wednesday as "the most significant step forward in Canada-U.S. co-operation since (NAFTA)". This deal promises regulatory alignment (including the food and automotive sectors), quicker border crossings for business or travel (with pre-clearance options), and "screened once, accepted twice" cargo. Perhaps the biggest concern for Canadians however are the changes this agreement could have for their privacy. [more inside]
posted by stinkycheese at 2:19 AM PST - 130 comments

December 7
The Orchestra
Zbigniew Rybczyński's pioneering 1990 HDTV production, The Orchestra (58m), a study in layered images and classical music, a commentary on man in the 20th century. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 8:56 PM PST - 19 comments

If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere
Make Magazine has released its Ultimate Kit Guide which rates 175 DIY kits. Kits like the: 6-in-1 Solar Robot Kit, the Infrared Jammer Kit, the KaraKuri Somersault Doll kit, the Loud Objects Noise Toy Kit. But best of all you will find the astounding MakerBot Thing-O-Matic 3D printer. "The Thing-O-Matic is a breakthrough in 3D printing technology. The Thing-O-Matic prints thing after thing, it's completely automated! You hit print and the machine does all the work. Want to print 100 butterflies? Easy. Want to print an entire chess set? No problem. Buy it, assemble it, and enjoy being the first on your block to live in the cutting-edge personal manufacturing future of tomorrow!" [more inside]
posted by storybored at 7:52 PM PST - 37 comments

The Sweet side of fantasy art... farewell
The fantasy artist of Xanth, Robert Jordan and many, many more... ... If you read fantasy novels in the 70's, 80's, 90's, and beyond, up to ... well, just recently... you know his work. Please raise a . to... Darrel K. Sweet
posted by The otter lady at 7:29 PM PST - 56 comments

Leisure Suit Larry
Leisure Suit Larry is a series of adventure games written by Al Lowe and published by Sierra from 1987 to 2009. The main character, whose full name is Larry Laffer, is a balding, dorky, double entendre-speaking, leisure suit-wearing (but still somewhat lovable) "loser" in his 40s. The games follow him as he spends much of his life trying (usually unsuccessfully) to seduce attractive women. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 6:43 PM PST - 68 comments

History of Half-Mast
"The earliest record we have of the lowering of a flag to signify a death was an occasion in 1612, when the Master of the 'Hearts Ease', William Hall, was murdered by Eskimos while taking part in an expedition in search of the North West Passage. On rejoining her consort, the vessel's flag was flown trailing over the stern as a mark of mourning. On her return to London, the 'Hearts Ease' again flew her flag over the stern and it was recognised as an appropriate gesture of mourning." [more inside]
posted by Deflagro at 6:33 PM PST - 11 comments

Beyond Good and Evil
  • [A Descent Into the Heart of Darkness]
  • [A Descent Into the Heart of Darkness] Wrap-Up w/o Shane Smith
  • [more inside]
    posted by lemuring at 6:23 PM PST - 11 comments

    Degenerate Art
    Franz Sedlacek (1891 – 1945) was an Austrian painter who belonged to the tradition known as "New Objectivity" ("neue Sachlichkeit"), an artistic movement similar to Magical Realism. At the end of the Second World War he "disappeared" as a soldier of the Wehrmacht somewhere in Poland.
    posted by The Whelk at 5:32 PM PST - 4 comments

    Does what it says on the tin, though not how you may expect.
    The Best Pole Dance Ever. SLYT. Banish your preconceived notions and prepare to be amazed.
    posted by Devika at 4:09 PM PST - 152 comments

    25 to Life, A Documentary
    25 to Life: William "Reds" Brawner In 1980 after being burned as an infant, William Brawner received a blood transfusion with HIV tainted blood. Learning of his illness five years later, his family decided to keep his status a secret. [more inside]
    posted by Silo004 at 4:07 PM PST - 31 comments

    Murray Close, Interviewed
    Take 210,000 colour transparencies – plus or minus a thousand or two. Examine them one by one by one, carefully and closely. Study – and think about – the framing, lighting and colour balance. Check for any blurring or closed eyes. Think about how they’ll look blown up to billboard size. Take your time. You’ll need to. Now make an initial pick – 100 shots, say. Then cut your choices down to 30 – ‘the brown bag’ in movie jargon, the selection which will go to the studio executives. Then trim that down to six transparencies. And finally, to just one image – the iconic one.

    That is the process by which Stanley Kubrick’s 1975 film The Shining came to be known by that one, terrifying moment of Jack Nicholson’s wild, unshaven, grinning face – eyes sharp left – emerging through an axe-smashed door. And it’s how Murray Close learned to take a photograph.
    posted by beaucoupkevin at 3:20 PM PST - 6 comments

    Wingsuit B.A.S.E. jump fail.
    This B.A.S.E. jump went very, very wrong. For reasons unknown, after a good exit from a 450 meter cliff this jumper's wingsuit did not inflate on one side, causing him to go completely unstable. Out of desperation he deployed his canopy which, as you might expect, opened with massive line twists. Yet somehow he managed to walk away unscratched! Watching this = drinking 3 cups of coffee! SLTY
    posted by Dean358 at 2:59 PM PST - 53 comments

    What really happened aboard Air France 447?
    What really happened aboard Air France 447? With the discovery of the cockpit voice recorders comes a tale of Air France 447's final moments. Previously and previously
    posted by thewumpusisdead at 2:29 PM PST - 144 comments

    Beers, Jocks, and Queers
    We call hot wings 'sassy' here,” he explains. “'Cause, you know, we're gay.” Gay sports bars are no longer an oxymoron. But are they part of the death of gay culture?
    posted by Diablevert at 2:08 PM PST - 93 comments

    The year in film....
    The 2011 Portfolio (slyt.) Clips from 166 of this year's films, combined into one video trailer. How many can you name? (Via)
    posted by zarq at 1:53 PM PST - 8 comments

    Serialized eBooks
    Despite the popularity of long-arc, serialized TV shows, no one really wants to read serialized fiction, apparently. That's not stopped anyone from trying, though, like say Stephen King with The Green Mile and The Plant, semi-successful efforts from a mega-successful author. That was before the current rise of the ebook, though, and a few authors (also here and here and here) are betting technology will turn serialized novels into the next big thing, that we're in "the perfect environment for a resurgence."
    posted by nospecialfx at 1:36 PM PST - 44 comments

    WM3 four months later
    When a prosecutor argues a bullshit case to a jury, he typically does so for one of two reasons: Either he is not terribly bright or he is cravenly amoral. [West Memphis Three Prosecutor] Fogleman would not speak to me on the record, which means I cannot report what he said. But my impressions are fair game. John Fogleman is pleasant, charming, and oddly forthcoming. He is also perfectly bright.

    Life after prison and the machinations behind the Alford Plea taken by the West Memphis Three.
    posted by mudpuppie at 1:32 PM PST - 24 comments

    Much More Than Props
    I am Iron Man. I am Aquaman (and you can be too). I am Flynn (possibly NSFW). I'm Batman. We are Boba Fett. [more inside]
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 12:55 PM PST - 11 comments

    Like a manpage for the web
    Over the past several years, Mozilla's collection of developer documentation for its own web browsers has turned into a wiki-editable reference of web standards for developers working with all browsers, hosting a comprehensive, no-nonsense reference of HTML, HTML5, CSS, JavaScript, the DOM, and more. If you find yourself turning to this reference frequently, dochub provides instant access to Mozilla's documentation for any HTML, CSS, JavaScript, or DOM-related topic. If you're worried that a fancy new standard might not work in an older browser, canIuse will tell you exactly how many browsers will support that new standard. Still want to use that shiny new standard? Modernizr and yepnope will let you detect missing features, and load tiny bits of code to make old browsers support the latest HTML5 hotness.
    [via the carefully-curated selections of JavaScript and HTML5 Weekly, run by MetaFilter's own wackybrit]
    posted by schmod at 12:11 PM PST - 23 comments

    The forgotten gentleman lawer turned privateer who founded Jamestown
    In 1602, he became the first Englishman to sail directly to New England across the ill-charted waters of the North Atlantic (Google books; alt: Archive.org). He is credited with setting up a fort on Cuttyhunk Island, and naming both Martha's Vineyard and Cape Cod in that voyage. A few months later, he then returned to England, where he planned the first English settlement to take hold in the new world. He returned in 1607, but only survived 13 weeks in Jamestown (Gb). Who was this founding father of the first English colony take hold in North America? Bartholomew Gosnold. [more inside]
    posted by filthy light thief at 11:59 AM PST - 12 comments

    mashup
    Get your sht together and get going with a fcking Fortran based music visualisation to replace HTML5 games and hook into NewsCloud via YouTube and Google Blog Search
    posted by sgt.serenity at 11:58 AM PST - 20 comments

    Now what am I going to do with all these signs
    After almost 30 years of appeals and legal maneuvering, Philadelphia prosecutors have abandoned attempts to impose the death penalty on Mumia Abu-Jamal for killing police office Daniel Faulkner in December 1981. Background, previously.
    posted by anigbrowl at 11:45 AM PST - 56 comments

    How Knitting Behind Bars Transformed Maryland Convicts
    After she retired, Lynn Zwerling decided to teach knitting to prisoners. The program has seen some success.
    posted by reenum at 11:24 AM PST - 19 comments

    The Rights that were Left.
    On December 6th, 2011, International Human Rights Day, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered a speech in front of the United Nations proclaiming freedom and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons (transcript included). [more inside]
    posted by seanmpuckett at 11:03 AM PST - 71 comments

    The Woodstock Show
    On August 19, 1969, the (prime time ABC version of the) Dick Cavett show featured several popular musicians. pt 1 - pt 2 - pt 3 - pt 4 - pt 5 The Jefferson Airplane, David Crosby and Stephen Stills had rushed back from a show they did at a festival. Jimi Hendrix couldn't get back in time, but appeared later. The third guest, Joni Mitchell, skipped Woodstock to make sure she was on time for this broadcast, but a month later she wrote a cool song based on what she saw on TV and heard from friends. [more inside]
    posted by msalt at 10:48 AM PST - 16 comments

    The wayward sons of Mother Earth
    Founded in 1990, Skyclad is considered to be one of the first bands in the "folk metal" genre. Until his departure in 2001, the lyrics came from the pen of band leader Martin Walkyier, who wrote some of the most poetic and sharply socio-political lyrics in metal (and had a wicked way with a pun, to boot). [more inside]
    posted by jbickers at 10:39 AM PST - 18 comments

    The unique looks of Drive and Bellflower
    Drive and Bellflower are both movies with fast cars and distinctive looks but one had a budget 765x the other. Drive was captured to Betamax's grandchild, Bellflower to a Mac Book Pro. [more inside]
    posted by morganw at 10:21 AM PST - 21 comments

    Seredipity?
    Random Cat Gifs + Random Music = Procatinator
    posted by Del Far at 9:57 AM PST - 48 comments

    You put too much SWOOSH, in the T!
    Harry Morgan, best remembered at Officer Bill Gannon, and Colonel Sherman T. Potter, has closed his last case, and ridden off, into the sunset.
    posted by timsteil at 9:30 AM PST - 124 comments

    A Reluctant Enemy
    "What a strange position I find myself in," [Yamamoto] wrote a friend, "having been assigned the mission diametrically opposed to my own personal opinion, with no choice but to push full speed in pursuance of that mission. Alas, is that fate?"

    A brief account of how one of the biggest critics of Japan's war policy became the mastermind of the Pearl Harbor attacks. (SLNYT)
    posted by swift at 8:12 AM PST - 44 comments

    Something went boom in the night. (SLYT)
    Mythbusters misfire maligns members of Dublin, CA. MSNBC, CNET. Did Grant let NASA do his maths?
    posted by TomMelee at 8:08 AM PST - 250 comments

    Zagat's for Revolutionaries?
    Diner's Guide to the Working Conditions of American Restaurants [PDF] published by labor advocates at Restaurant Opportunities Centers United.
    posted by Miko at 7:34 AM PST - 68 comments

    Cocozza - he's a naughty man
    Television Ads at Christmas - featuring Adam Buxton and John Lewis, Littlewoods and The X-Factor.
    posted by mippy at 6:22 AM PST - 21 comments

    No escapism here; all dark corners are revealed
    Laurie Lipton studied 17th century Dutch masters to develop her own unique style of pencil drawing. (First bought to our attention by misteraitch)
    posted by adamvasco at 4:33 AM PST - 27 comments

    Open source online board game engine with over 1,000 modules
    Here is VASSAL, an open-source engine for playing board games online, by email, on forums or on a single machine. Which board games? These. (Requires Java.)
    posted by JHarris at 1:31 AM PST - 41 comments

    More Evidence Found for Quantum Physics in Photosynthesis
    Previous experiments have hinted at the connection... Physicists have found the strongest evidence yet of quantum effects fueling photosynthesis. Multiple experiments in recent years have suggested as much, but it’s been hard to be sure. Quantum effects were clearly present in the light-harvesting antenna proteins of plant cells, but their precise role in processing incoming photons remained unclear. In an experiment published Dec. 6 in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, a connection between coherence — far-flung molecules interacting as one, separated by space but not time — and energy flow is established. “There was a smoking gun before,” said study co-author Greg Engel of the University of Chicago. “Here we can watch the relationship between coherence and energy transfer. This is the first paper showing that coherence affects the probability of transport. It really does change the chemical dynamics.”
    posted by aleph at 12:01 AM PST - 64 comments

    December 6
    Good sports
    At the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, a yacht race was taking the world's teams through dangerous waters at breakneck speeds. Stig Käll and his brother Lars were in the running to win when, behind them, the Australian team capsized and slipped below the deadly waves. Making a split-second decision, the Källs turned their boat around and rescued the Australians, losing the race and vanishing from the pages of Olympic history, but winning recognition from the Japanese press, who awarded them the headline "Gold Medal of Humanity". The Käll brothers were the first to receive recognition from the International Fair Play Committee, a group that now gives awards and recognition to people who display unusual sportsmanship, such as: [more inside]
    posted by shii at 11:32 PM PST - 41 comments

    Wisdom of the Aged.
    Back in October, NYT columnist David Brooks asked his older readers (aged 70+) to send him "life reports." He wanted them to appraise their lives, in an effort to glean some life lessons for all of us to learn by. After receiving thousands of replies, he published his assessment of them a couple weeks ago, in two columns (Part 1: Nov 24, 2011; Part 2: Nov 28, 2011). He's also selected specific ones and published them on his blog. [more inside]
    posted by crunchland at 9:46 PM PST - 61 comments

    "I heard a noise, faint, monotonous, white."
    Getting babies to sleep is a topic of great interest to all parents (see previously). One trick that has been shown to work is white noise. Although many opt for a white noise machine, other parents swear by radio static, vacuum cleaners, dryers, or a running faucet. Now, of course, you can send your cutie to slumberland without wasting nearly so much electricity or water, all thanks to youtube. [more inside]
    posted by Deathalicious at 9:42 PM PST - 89 comments

    "the cardinal rule of war reportage: don't die"
    We got through the basics—how I’d arrived in Libya, why I was there—in civil tones. Then the Inspector asked, “If you were a professor at Harvard, why did you quit your job to come risk your life in Libya?” I explained as best I could that I had not been a professor but a graduate student, and part of my training was teaching undergraduates. The academic job market was tough and demoralizing, and the rigidity of the academic lifestyle had never appealed to me that much anyway. I had suspected for a few years that I’d be temperamentally better suited to working as a reporter. “Why you work journalist? You don’t study journalism, you study history!”
    What I Lost in Libya by Clare Morgana Gillis, a journalist who was captured by Gadhafi forces.
    posted by Kattullus at 7:41 PM PST - 12 comments

    “We try and illustrate a “universe-next-door” where the new product is the only novelty. Where there is still tea, and the traffic is still miserable.”
    Future Drama is a tumblr devoted to that particular kind of futurism - corporate prediction demos of how their products will change the world - See The Mother Of All Demos from 1968 introducing the mouse, video conferencing, teleconferencing, hypertext, word processing - Apple in 1987 - Philco-Ford The Future Now!
    posted by The Whelk at 5:24 PM PST - 23 comments

    Are The Packers made of common stock?
    The Green Bay Packers are not unique solely for being undefeated this season. The Financial Times' blog reports on the only publicly owned and essentially non-profit NFL team, the shares of which cannot appreciate, do not pay dividends or capital gains, are non-transferable, and cannot be concentrated in the hands of any single owner. Beginning today, the defending world champs opened their fifth common stock offering, with shares priced at $250.
    posted by airing nerdy laundry at 5:04 PM PST - 114 comments

    Justin Bieber is on DEF JAM?? But isn't that Slayer's label?
    A perfect storm of terrible, two sharks trying to jump each other - Justin Bieber's steampunk version of 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town'.
    posted by FatherDagon at 4:58 PM PST - 115 comments

    Look Out Below
    Google Earth is a program where you can look at the Earth through aerial photos. At Google Earth Cool Places (GECplaces) you can find and share weird, cool, and beautiful places. [more inside]
    posted by netbros at 4:54 PM PST - 5 comments

    "Scenes reflect what has not yet happened, scenes anticipate what has already happened."
    In the Cut: Piecing Together the Action Sequence. A video essay in three parts by Jim Emerson.
    posted by villanelles at dawn at 4:21 PM PST - 46 comments

    "Weasel Wednesday" comes a day early
    Keeping wildlife, an amphibious rodent, for uh, domestic, you know, within the city — that ain't legal, either. But in the outskirts of Calgary, that's just adorable.
    posted by Blazecock Pileon at 4:19 PM PST - 39 comments

    "Android graphics true facts"
    The day before last, Dianne Hackborn, a software engineer from Google, posted a lengthy essay on Google+ about Android UI rendering also touching on the hardware accelerated UI debacle. Not to let sleeping dogs lie, one of the previous Android interns, Andrew Munn, posted a reply regarding other areas where Android needs to improve. Both posts provide an absolutely fascinating first-hand look into how the Android UI works.
    posted by Talez at 2:33 PM PST - 57 comments

    a bit of a trickster
    Amalgamation, an animation by Micaël Reynaud based on an animated gif of photos by Michael Jang from his series "Summer Weather" with Music by Memory Tapes. [more inside]
    posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:27 PM PST - 6 comments

    Christmas Classics: Horrible Misogyny or Social Commentary?
    "Baby It's Cold Outside" is known as the Christmas Date Rape Song. Bitch Magazine wonders: does She & Him's gender-reversed version make it less creepy and less rape-y? Meanwhile, Persephone Magazine's "Listening While Feminist" has an alternative take on the holiday classic.
    posted by asnider at 2:11 PM PST - 385 comments

    Assuredly, many acclaimed poets are no match to Shakespeare.
    Former U.S. Poet Laureate Rita Dove edited The Penguin Anthology of 20th Century American Poetry, released in October. Harvard professor and critic Helen Vendler objects to Dove's choices; Dove reacts (and Vendler, succinctly, replies, "I have written the review and I stand by it.") and so do other critics, with charges of racism and, relatedly, too narrow a view of poetic traditions. [more inside]
    posted by joannemerriam at 12:56 PM PST - 77 comments

    " I've always been acutely aware of how much society hates me because I'm disabled"
    "The other day I was having a conversation with a Tory who accused me of using "strong language" when I pointed out that welfare reform is forcing disabled people to commit suicide. He felt there's no forcing going on. I had to explain that one needs money to live in this world, if you deny people money they have no way of carrying on." [more inside]
    posted by MartinWisse at 11:45 AM PST - 120 comments

    Death and Life in Berkeley Pit
    The Berkeley Pit in Butte, Montana started as an open pit copper mine in 1955, and was closed in 1982. At that time, groundwater pumping ceased and the pit started to flood, leading to what is now one of the largest Superfund sites. The water body was considered uninhabitable, with high concentrations of copper, cadmium, arsenic, aluminum, manganese and zinc and of pH of 2.5 (as acidic as a lemon), but in 1995, a small clump of green slime was noticed floating on the water's surface. Since then, the algae blooms have been studied as a possible method of remediation for the toxic waters. That same year, a migratory flock of snow geese landed in the pit lake. Stormy weather kept the flock on the lake, and when the weather cleared, 342 birds were dead. A Migratory Bird Protection Plan was then put in place, to prevent such occurrences from happening again. In the spring of 1996, a surprising discovery was made: yeast, which shouldn't grown in those pH levels, was surviving, and absorbing eighty-seven percent of the metals in the water. Furthermore, Andrea and Donald Stierle, professors who have been studying the pit lake since 1995, have found 70 compounds that might be medically useful. [more inside]
    posted by filthy light thief at 11:05 AM PST - 36 comments

    The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth
    After his presidency, Thomas Jefferson took on the task of re-editing the New Testament by literally cutting and pasting a new version of the text, shorn of Jesus's miracles and the Resurrection. Titled The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth (but known more commonly today as the Jefferson Bible), the handmade book had begun to crumble after nearly two centuries. Now, after a painstaking conservation process, the Jefferson Bible has been digitized, and will be on exhibition at the Smithsonian though May 2012. (Previously)
    posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:38 AM PST - 64 comments

    Day by day, the daimon offered him the hemlock. So he took it.
    Sócrates is dead. It’s hard to see how anyone could be surprised. Run of Play on the death of Sócrates. [more inside]
    posted by juv3nal at 10:27 AM PST - 14 comments

    Cats 1, Kids 0
    "You can raise money to help your sick cat, for example, but not poor people." Paypal vs. Regretsy: Cats 1, Kids 0.
    posted by dunkadunc at 10:08 AM PST - 102 comments

    England's answer to Crazy Horse Mountain
    Northumberlandia is coming. "A mile away, I stand at the base of Northumberlandia’s head which, at this distance, looks just like a mountain of mud. We drive up hillside tracks to her hip and one of her breasts (the other one has yet to take shape) and then wind our way up to her face. Even now, as bulldozers comb her hair and steamrollers flatten her skin, it is easy to make out her feminine contours."
    posted by Paul Slade at 9:49 AM PST - 13 comments

    Feel the Newtmentum.
    Is Newt really going to be the nominee? As Romney collapses and Newt surges in the polls, the party establishment is worried. Libertarians are panicking. Can the establishment stop him? What about Ron Paul? Can Huntsman save the party from catastrophe?
    posted by empath at 9:29 AM PST - 400 comments

    Occupied America?
    For the past 48 years the U.S. Congress has passed a version of The National Defense Authorization Act. The purpose of the act is to set the budget and expenditures of the Department of Defense. This year's act has some controversial provisions. President Obama has threatened a veto. [more inside]
    posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 9:13 AM PST - 127 comments

    Googly Eye-based street mischief
    Eye Bombing. More Eye Bombing.
    posted by The Discredited Ape at 9:11 AM PST - 27 comments

    Messy. Crazy. Brilliant. Insane. Reporter.
    How Do You Explain Gene Weingarten? (Via). [more inside]
    posted by zarq at 8:41 AM PST - 26 comments

    "Mr. Hammond, after careful consideration, I've decided not to endorse your park."
    "God creates dinosaurs. God destroys dinosaurs. God creates man. Man destroys God. Man creates dinosaurs." [Discovery.com] Within five years, a woolly mammoth will likely be cloned, according to scientists who have just recovered well-preserved bone marrow in a mammoth thigh bone. Japan's Kyodo News first reported the find. You can see photos of the thigh bone at this Kyodo page.
    posted by Fizz at 8:18 AM PST - 111 comments

    Creating the Deathly Hallows animation
    A short interview with Sequence supervisor Dale Newton describing how the animated sequence in Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows: Part I was created.

    The scene was directed by Swiss animator Ben Hibon, creator of Codehunters and other work.

    Bonus: sketches and preliminary artwork for the scene by various artists.
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:05 AM PST - 14 comments

    The physical toll of being a goon
    The NYT has published a three-part series on the life of late hockey enforcer Derek Boogaard, who died earlier this year at age 28 of a drug and alcohol overdose. [more inside]
    posted by orrnyereg at 6:29 AM PST - 112 comments

    Ríu Ríu Chíu
    The Monkees Sing Ríu Ríu Chíu -- a traditional Spanish Christmas Carol. (SLYT)
    posted by swift at 6:16 AM PST - 21 comments

    On John Lennon and Yoko Ono
    In Which John Lennon is Split in Two
    posted by Cloud King at 6:06 AM PST - 55 comments

    Depressives unite!
    "What was really most healing, for me, besides the drugs, was meeting my own people, my tribe. When you meet each other the relief of knowing you’re not alone and that you both feel like the walking dead. It’s such a relief to be with someone who will never say, “Perk up.” Black Dog Tribes is a (beta) social platform for people with depression created by Ruby Wax.
    posted by lucia__is__dada at 5:35 AM PST - 17 comments

    Sibylle Baier
    This song was recorded at home in the 1970s by German actress Sibylle Baier. Her son collected her recordings and created an album to share with family, and in 2006 the Colour Green was released by label Orange Twin. [more inside]
    posted by KingoftheWhales at 1:06 AM PST - 11 comments

    There's always room for Cello
    Star Wars medly for two cellos. (SLYT) [more inside]
    posted by ShutterBun at 12:17 AM PST - 21 comments

    Suddenly, eight years later
    Here is the hilarious comics and popular culture blog Mike Sterling's Progressive Ruin, which just turned eight years old!  Features include The End of Civilization, where he riffs on the embarassing pictures in the Diamond Previews catalog, Sluggo Saturdays, which is just what it sounds like, and he's also kind of a fan of Swamp Thing. [more inside]
    posted by JHarris at 12:16 AM PST - 15 comments

    December 5
    Single Link His Toons
    D. on Ice, in honor of the 110th birthday of Walt Disney, kinda.
    posted by oneswellfoop at 9:51 PM PST - 13 comments

    chicken and rice recipe
    Now you can make the famous NYC halal style Chicken and Rice at home.
    posted by AceRock at 9:12 PM PST - 93 comments

    Education For All
    The 2011 Edublog Awards are on. The nominee lists provide rich resources for everyone, perhaps most especially in the free web tool category. A personal selection: Online Convert (free online conversion of dozens of video formats), GeoTrio and TripLine (recorded tours around the world), CorkboardMe and LinoIt (online, shared pibboards), Cover It Live (online event presentation) and A Google A Day (daily questions and puzzles, presented by Google (previously)). For kids, there’s Artsonia (the world’s largest children’s arts museum) Tarheel Reader (illustrated readers for multiple platforms) and SweetSearch (a search engine for students),along with much, much more. [more inside]
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 7:56 PM PST - 1 comments

    Inequality highest in thirty years across most of the developed world.
    Divided We Stand: Why Inequality Keeps Rising is the latest report from the OECD Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs. It finds:
    In the three decades prior to the recent economic downturn, wage gaps widened and household income inequality increased in a large majority of OECD countries. [...]Launching the report in Paris, OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurría said “The social contract is starting to unravel in many countries. This study dispels the assumptions that the benefits of economic growth will automatically trickle down to the disadvantaged and that greater inequality fosters greater social mobility. Without a comprehensive strategy for inclusive growth, inequality will continue to rise.”
    Links to Overview [.pdf]; press release; notes [.pdf format] for Australia, Canada, the UK, the USA; data link (excel format).
    posted by wilful at 7:33 PM PST - 53 comments

    ....and falling.
    In June 2004, Paul Stephens pulled over to the shoulder on The George Bush Tollway/I-75 overpass in Dallas, TX while arguing with his girlfriend, Lorena Godoy Osorio. As the fight escalated Osorio got our of the car to flee and Stephens threw her off the overpass onto the Interstate. He then jumped to his own death, 85 feet below. Dallas indie rock band Sorta wrote and recorded a song about the incident, "85 Feet" [more inside]
    posted by holdkris99 at 7:31 PM PST - 10 comments

    New worlds of wonderful sound
    "Far From Moscow is a resource designed to promote, catalog, and consider new music from Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus, together with the Baltic nations (Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia)." Posts are frequent and extensive and stuffed full of fantastic songs. They also offer a dozen free sampler albums; I'm listening to and loving Apples and the more ambient Forest. [more inside]
    posted by Rory Marinich at 7:30 PM PST - 13 comments

    Bike vs. Board
    Snow Crash.
    posted by unSane at 6:53 PM PST - 43 comments

    The Pinhegg
    The Pinhegg – My Journey To Build An Egg Pinhole Camera
    posted by Confess, Fletch at 6:12 PM PST - 8 comments

    T-Dot
    The history of Toronto in photos is 90 some odd posts linked to provide a thematically organized visual overview. The vast majority of the photographs featured derive from the Toronto Archives. Should you be interested in a less visually oriented take on Toronto history, there is also the Nostalgia Tripping series, which was designed to be a bit more about storytelling than just the photos.
    posted by netbros at 4:40 PM PST - 20 comments

    Meet Benjaman Kyle
    On August 31, 2004, a naked, bruised man was discovered behind a Burger King at the intersection of Interstate 95 and Highway 17 in Richmond Hill, Georgia. He had no memory of who he was. Fingerprint and DNA searches were unsuccessful. His identity continues to remain missing.
    posted by vidur at 4:33 PM PST - 90 comments

    “This is not a definition, it is not true—and, therefore, your questions do not make sense.”
    In reflecting on the project, McAllister feels “caught between the intimacy of each individual response, and the pattern of the cumulative replies.” The question remains: Why did they answer? McAllister claims no credit, describing his survey form as “barely literate.” He recalls that in his cover letter (no examples of which exist) he misused the word precocious—he meant presumptuous—and in hindsight he sees that he was both, though few writers seemed to mind. “The conclusion I came to was that nobody had asked them. New Criticism was about the scholars and the text; writers were cut out of the equation. Scholars would talk about symbolism in writing, but no one had asked the writers.” Sixteen year old boy dislikes English homework, goes outside the chain of command.
    posted by villanelles at dawn at 4:11 PM PST - 55 comments

    A leaking woodpecker
    Security researchers at North Carolina State University led by Xuxian Jiang (who had previously discovered 12 malicious Android applications sold through Google's Android Market) have uncovered holes in how the permissions-based security model is enforced on numerous Android devices. Called "leaks", these vulnerabilities allow new and existing malicious applications to eavesdrop on calls, track the user's location, install applications, send SMS messages, delete data from the device, and more. (via)
    posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:56 PM PST - 30 comments

    There goes the balls again!
    And now, a 1984 talk show performance of Whistling On My Mind. (stupefying SLYT)
    posted by naju at 3:05 PM PST - 32 comments

    Hey girl, I'm sorry I said 'multivariate' when I meant 'multivariable'.
    Do you think Ryan Gosling is sexy? Do you think statistics are sexy? If so, you might enjoy this.
    posted by Midnight Rambler at 3:01 PM PST - 35 comments

    Quantum realism mounts a charge. Prepare phenomenological defenses.
    A mixed (superpositioned?) state of buzz among those working in quantum foundations over a new paper by Matt Pusey asserting that quantum states are real physical objects and not simply statistical probability distributions. Matt Leifer does a balanced contextualization and explication. A giddy article in nature news and David Wallace support and summarize. [more inside]
    posted by wjzeng at 2:11 PM PST - 42 comments

    What do you think?
    Robin Waart is a Dutch artist whose work often involves isolating unexamined elements of narrative. 745 is a collection of all of the exclamation points from a single copy of the weekly 'Donald Duck' comic book. Part One is a book of 101 'Part One' pages from English-language books. Thinking in Pictures is an ongoing project to gather moments in film when a character says 'What do you think?' or 'What are you thinking?'
    posted by shakespeherian at 2:02 PM PST - 16 comments

    Sweet Mother of Lethbridge-Stewart!
    The Middleman and Wendy in THE WIBBLY-WOBBLY, TIMEY-WIMEY, JIGGERY-POKERY. Javier Grillo-Marxuach, creator of The Middleman (prev) in both comics and TV, imagines a cross-over with a certain venerable British franchise. [more inside]
    posted by kmz at 1:30 PM PST - 14 comments

    Pen and Portraiture
    Jane Austen biographer discovers 'lost portrait' Better (expandable) picture of it in the Guardian, and a link to the classic pic you should be familiar with.
    posted by IndigoJones at 1:23 PM PST - 22 comments

    Good for Business; Kids Not So Much
    The Failure of Corporate School Reform: schools and school systems desperate for funding often turn to businesses for help. According to some critics, the U.S. educational system has also adopted a corporate philosophy that is at odds with the historical notion of the "common school." Next up: "virtual education reform." A critic's claim: "controlled, rigid, anti-critical teaching results not in subjects with a greater capacity for economic productivity, but the opposite."
    posted by mrgrimm at 1:04 PM PST - 46 comments

    Gorilla vs Bear's 2011 Album Picks
    Gorilla vs Bear is a way cool Texas, USA based music blog. These are their top 30 album choices for 2011. Full disclosure: this was sent to me by my friends son. Although I think these are great selections -- I even knew a few -- I'm way to old to be part of their core readership demographic :-)
    posted by Dean358 at 12:27 PM PST - 89 comments

    Duck!
    Mowing the lawn. A collection of aircraft taxiing with the wheels up...
    posted by bitmage at 11:39 AM PST - 49 comments

    Samuel Beckett's Film
    Samuel Beckett's Film. Here is an article by director on Alan Schneider on the movie, and an article by Sylvia Debevec Hanning.
    posted by beshtya at 11:35 AM PST - 7 comments

    Other earths, circling different suns
    The Habitable Exoplanets Catalog is a database of the planets outside our solar system which are considered the most suitable for life according to certain steps and metrics. So far 16 have been identified as possible candidates. This Guardian article is a good introduction. You can also just dive into the catalogue, which ranks planets on two main scales, similarity to Earth and surface habitability (note that all images are computer renderings). The catalog is a project of the Planetary Habitability Laboratory at University of Puerto Rico in Arecibo (home to the world's largest radiotelescope).
    posted by Kattullus at 11:21 AM PST - 42 comments

    for the budding Bene Tleilax
    The quest for the $500 home molecular biology laboratory Molecular diagnostics and molecular biology in general are becoming more pervasive every day in a range of applications. For some time there have been attempts to build an affordable diy machine to explore this fascinating science. OpenPCR (polymerase chain reaction) received quite a bit of publicity with their $599 system. Each of these have had problems and were not quite suitable for students. Here is an attempt to get the price even lower and to simply the construction process. Previously on Metafilter
    posted by 2manyusernames at 11:10 AM PST - 27 comments

    Take up the White Man's burden— And reap his old reward: The blame of those ye better, The hate of those ye guard—
    Indian author Pankaj Mishra writes a brutal takedown of Niall Ferguson's latest book, Civilisation: The West and the Rest in the London Review of Books. Ferguson responds to the critical book review with a lawsuit. [more inside]
    posted by bodywithoutorgans at 11:08 AM PST - 107 comments

    Pessimism of the intellect, optimism of the will.
    Jacques Delors: Euro would still be strong if it had been built to my plan. 'Former president of the European Commission Jacques Delors talks to Charles Moore about the fate of the euro.''Jacques Delors is a master of all the technicalities of the argument, and all the Byzantine structures of the institutions, and speaks confidently in their jargon, but his mind seems burdened by deeper thoughts, too. He sees the crisis of the euro as part of something deeper and wider even than the credit crunch itself. He believes that the main social and economic “players” have their doubts about European policies.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 10:57 AM PST - 10 comments

    The Best Paper Airplane in The World
    The DC-3: The Best Paper Airplane in The World. "During the summer of 1950, on the outskirts of Harrisburg Pennsylvania U.S.A., my sister's boyfriend 'Skip' was sitting on the glider on the front porch of our house. He said to me - Hey Mike... bring me a sheet of paper.' I answered why? and he responded with his make believe impatience 'Just bring it!' I obeyed and he said that he was going to build the best paper airplane in the world. I was eight years old at the time and my meager knowledge of paper airplanes was the traditional flying wedge that spiraled into tight loops and fell head first to the ground." [more inside]
    posted by SpacemanStix at 10:34 AM PST - 35 comments

    LAT at 130
    Yesterday, the Los Angeles Times celebrated the 130th anniversary of its first issue, and marked the occasion with 130 photos from Los Angeles history, as well as a gallery of historic front pages.
    posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:22 AM PST - 7 comments

    When adults take the high school achievement test.
    Could you pass your state's standard high school level achievement test today? One school board member, a successful business executive with multiple college degrees, took his state's 10th grade achievement test. He failed.
    posted by COD at 9:47 AM PST - 183 comments

    Beyond Digital: bringing some of Morocco's off-line culture to the online world at large
    Beyond Digital is a collaborative project between eight members who have come together to explore the culture and music of Morocco, which is often poorly represented online to the world at large, thus "beyond digital." The team put together a 9 minute "behind-the-scenes" look at their work, or you skip the preview and jump into their YouTube channel, articles on The Fader, and more on their website. Highlights: a collection of Moroccan percussion loops, a photo essay on Morocco's changing culture, and a collaboration between Moroccan musician Hassan Wargui (Imanaren) and Nettle, a "band project" by DJ/rupture. [more inside]
    posted by filthy light thief at 9:45 AM PST - 2 comments

    This Old Cub gets to the Hall
    The votes are in, and former Chicago Cub, Ron Santo is this year's only inductee into the Baseball Hall of Fame, one year after his death. (previously discussed)
    posted by vagabond at 9:16 AM PST - 23 comments

    All I want for Christmas is you (in a pink leotard and knee socks)
    Miracle on 42nd Street
    posted by Narrative Priorities at 9:13 AM PST - 16 comments

    SWAT Raids, Stun Guns, And Pepper Spray: Why The Government Is Ramping Up The Use Of Force
    Shortly after Jared Loughner allegedly opened fire in the parking lot of a Tucson grocery store last January, we saw much hand-wringing about the threat of violence against the government. In fact, violence against government officials is actually pretty rare. But just three days before Loughner's rampage, police in Framingham, Mass., raided the home of 68-year-old Eurie Stamps. Stamps wasn't the target of the drug raid. Police were after the son of Stamps' girlfriend, and actually apprehended him outside the home. They raided the house anyway. Stamps, who was unarmed and broke no laws, was shot and killed by a police officer. By my count, he's at least the 46th innocent person killed in a botched drug raid. Every politician in Washington condemned the Loughner shootings, and rightly so. But nearly every politician in Washington supports the laws and policies that led to the death of Eurie Stamps.
    -- Radley Balko continues his lonely crusade documenting the ongoing militarization of America's police forces.
    posted by empath at 9:05 AM PST - 62 comments

    The National Championship of the Gulf Coast.
    The Southeastern Conference has been ensured of producing its sixth straight BCS national champion as the #1 ranked 13-0 LSU Tigers will play against the #2 ranked 11-1 Alabama Crimson Tide in the 2011 BCS championship game. [more inside]
    posted by clearly at 8:18 AM PST - 63 comments

    An Institution in Transition
    Upheaval at the New York Public Library: an article in The Nation which looks at the current state of the NYPL, and highlights many of the problems facing public libraries across the United States.
    posted by codacorolla at 7:52 AM PST - 40 comments

    This is the Classical
    Kickstarter-funded sports site The Classical launched over the weekend. [more inside]
    posted by troika at 7:50 AM PST - 14 comments

    2011
    The year in pictures - 2011
    posted by caddis at 6:43 AM PST - 44 comments

    A Crowd of One: Living with Multiple Personalities
    Sidian3 is a middle aged woman who has Dissociative Identity Disorder (D.I.D.), formerly known as Multiple personality disorder. She makes video blogs about this and related subjects. Potential triggers and sensitive topics are in videos after the jump. [more inside]
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:40 AM PST - 39 comments

    Reading the Riots
    "You feel euphoric you know. Because it's one of the best buzzes personally I've had in my life. Better than any drug. And you know it was just that....It was a feeling of standing up straight against an institution that's been historically has always been brutal, wicked and bad mind towards young people especially young black people."

    In collaboration with the LSE, the Guardian's Reading the Riots project has used a mixture of quantitative and qualitative methodologies to explore the causes of England's summer of disorder.
    posted by roofus at 3:51 AM PST - 26 comments

    How Doctors Die
    It’s not a frequent topic of discussion, but doctors die, too. And they don’t die like the rest of us. What’s unusual about them is not how much treatment they get compared to most Americans, but how little.
    How Doctors Die.
    posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:11 AM PST - 54 comments

    Yes, this is where I admit to the world I've been tying my shoelaces wrong.
    Shoelaces come undone? You may be tying them incorrectly. Easy check: do they sit straight across your shoe, or tilt up at an angle? If the latter, you're securing them with a granny knot, which falls apart readily, but this can be fixed by a small change in the way you tie the laces. Ian Fieggen explains and demonstrates. (He also writes it out). [more inside]
    posted by Upton O'Good at 12:37 AM PST - 53 comments

    December 4
    Blood, sweat and tears
    Nobody was surprised when Italy Prime Minister Mario Monti presented a draconian "save Italy" emergency Budget decree on Sunday - that's what he had been nominated to do. But the full impact of the measures, especially hitting pensioners, became stunningly clear when Welfare Minister Elsa Fornero, invited by Monti to present her ministry's section of the decree to the press and TV, broke down (SLYT) and was unable to bring out the word "sacrifice".
    posted by aqsakal at 11:37 PM PST - 72 comments

    Ying tong ying tong ying tong ying tong ying tong iddle-i po.
    Here is, um, something. Something silly, from the Goons. Here it is again. And here it is from the Muppets. And here it is in a bookstore at a signing by one of the Goons. More nonsense. And more. (← my favorite) And yet more. Okay, just one more. [more inside]
    posted by JHarris at 10:54 PM PST - 15 comments

    Eight Ferraris and one Lamborghini ... in a $4 million pileup
    "Flashy sports cars valued at as much as $4 million became a mangled mess in a matter of minutes on Sunday when a Ferrari leading a pack of exotic sports cars on a trip from Japan’s southern island of Kyushu to Hiroshima skidded as it tried to change lanes."
    posted by woodblock100 at 10:04 PM PST - 79 comments

    You can't stop Katy Perry
    Penn Jillette: An Atheist's Guide to the 2012 Election. [SLYT] Via BigThink, "A knowledge forum featuring the ideas, lessons, stories and advice of leading experts from around the world."
    posted by furiousxgeorge at 9:55 PM PST - 103 comments

    Peter Greenaway's "Prospero's Books"
    Peter Greenaway's "Prospero's Books" (NSFW) is not a movie in the sense that we usually employ the word. It's an experiment in form and content. ... The books, their typography, calligraphy and illustrations, are photographed in voluptuous detail. ... "Prospero's Books" really exists outside criticism. ... It is simply a work of original art, which Greenaway asks us to accept or reject on his own terms. - Roger Ebert
    posted by Trurl at 8:47 PM PST - 32 comments

    Fuckaround-itis
    How to waste time in the gym, or not
    posted by Listener at 8:02 PM PST - 275 comments

    Last dictator standing
    South African fast food chain Nando's ran an amusing ad featuring Zimbabwean dictator Robert Mugabe enjoying himself with a range of deceased despots, to the tune "Those were the days". The Zimbabwean "government" was not amused.
    posted by wilful at 7:27 PM PST - 47 comments

    The Toughest On Immigration
    Many here are familiar with Joe Arpaio who wrote a book called "Joe's Law: America's Toughest Sheriff Takes on Illegal Immigration, Drugs and Everything Else That Threatens America". He recently endorsed Ricky Perry for President.

    Since 2007 he has also had 400 sex-crime cases "that were inadequately investigated and in some instances were not worked at all, according to current and former police officers familiar with the cases.

    In El Mirage alone, where Arpaio's office was providing contract police services, officials discovered at least 32 reported child molestations — with victims as young as 2 years old — where the sheriff's office failed to follow through, even though suspects were known in all but six cases. Many of the victims, said a retired El Mirage police official who reviewed the files, were children of illegal immigrants." [more inside]
    posted by dig_duggler at 5:28 PM PST - 51 comments

    Before their time
    200+ Famous Musicians Who Died Too Young. Ordered by age, from 17 to 54, with brief descriptions and links to their last.fm pages.
    posted by madamjujujive at 5:19 PM PST - 71 comments

    The deathstar trench run minecraft style
    Minecraft - Star Wars - Death Star Run, and the making of.
    posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 3:38 PM PST - 22 comments

    Kitty Lit 101
    Comediva is having a Cat Week, and one of the features is "Kitty Lit 101".
    posted by reenum at 2:30 PM PST - 9 comments

    We need some angry nerds.
    "The PC is dead. Rising numbers of mobile, lightweight, cloud-centric devices [represent] an unprecedented shift of power from end users and software developers on the one hand, to operating system vendors on the other ... This is a little for the better, and much for the worse." - Jonathan Zittrain, Harvard Law Professor (via battellemedia.com) [more inside]
    posted by jeffburdges at 2:10 PM PST - 153 comments

    A game about crime.
    Taco Fiction is the winner of 2011's Interactive Fiction Competition (previously). According to Emily Short, "Taco Fiction has been the most purely enjoyable experience of the comp so far, full of entertaining twists and surprises, fair puzzles, and a forgiving design that lets you go back for objects left behind or tasks not completed." [more inside]
    posted by mokin at 1:31 PM PST - 8 comments

    Urban [all] bicyclists have an image problem
    "Urban bicyclist have an image problem...." "They’ve become stereotyped as pretentious, aloof jackasses, and a lot of this has to do with the changes taking place in cities right now."
    posted by jeffmac at 12:53 PM PST - 207 comments

    Dealing with comments about Attawapiskat
    The Canadian government has put a negative spin on the state of emergency and situation at Attawapiskat, in northern Ontario. A Plains Cree speaking Metis woman in Montreal has prepared an excellent series of responses to the major comments being generated by the crisis at Attawapiskat. (Via:âpihtawikosisân)
    posted by JL Sadstone at 12:50 PM PST - 60 comments

    "Whats goin on..."
    Jonah Mowry, Bullied Gay Teen: "IM NOT GOING TO KILL MYSELF. I JUST NEED TO GET THIS OUT HERE." [more inside]
    posted by ericb at 12:24 PM PST - 71 comments

    Hard Time Killin Floor
    Hubert Sumlin, the legendary guitarist for Howlin Wolf, and many others, has passed away. An appreciation.
    posted by timsteil at 12:21 PM PST - 20 comments

    The Secret Parisian Painter
    Influenced by Bosch, Cranach, Goya and the Surrealists Claude Verlinde who was born in 1927 is a very private magic realist about whose life little seems known. Here is his web presence.
    If you understand French, the press pages are interesting. Bonus SLYT slideshow. (NSFW) .
    posted by adamvasco at 10:26 AM PST - 11 comments

    Funk Styles: The Electric Boogaloo
    It's not breakdancing. Not really, although it's associated with breakdancing nowadays; breakin' was originally seen as being very east coast, while these dances originated on the west coast. What was this dancing?Well, many of the most famous 70s-80s street moves are actually called funk styles, which were performed, at first, to funk and disco, and later to early electronic and industrial dance music. And the big daddy of them all was a dance called the Electric Boogaloo, and demonstrated by the Electric Boogaloos.Here they are in their zoot-suited glory, showing off their signature moves. [more inside]
    posted by Bunny Ultramod at 10:08 AM PST - 5 comments

    School Portrait
    "We're going to try something different today. It's called a reality check." A short film by director Nick Scott and producer Michael Berliner. [more inside]
    posted by drlith at 9:55 AM PST - 9 comments

    What's the word? Techno-bird?
    Techno is the word! generates a little techno loop based on a word. (requires Chrome) [more inside]
    posted by mkb at 7:49 AM PST - 30 comments

    Piss off.
    Toilet gaming. [bbc.co.uk] When men use a public urinal they are cruelly left in full view, with nothing to do as they answer nature's call. Until now. British company Captive Media thinks it has developed a product that fills a gap in the market - a urinal mounted, urine-controlled games console for men.
    posted by Fizz at 6:27 AM PST - 87 comments

    Brain doctors, doing their thing
    Brain Tumors: symptoms, types, a man who hunts them (and what drives him) and a vivid video of the removal of one.
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:20 AM PST - 23 comments

    The Lost Sketches of Monty Python
    A few sketches aired during the original run of Monty Python were subsequently lost. Half an episode, the tenth of the third series, was censored by the BBC. All that survives is the script. Also, never shot, but written, was the King Brian the Wild scene from Holy Grail. Additionally, a few sketches were either slightly censored post-broadcast or erased for other reasons. A couple of those sketches have have been found on tape [Warning: Autoplaying video]. The two sketches are Political Choreographer (here with a short bit exhorting you to support Channel 11 in Chicago), and an interstitial animation by Terry Gilliam. Also, the uncensored Summarize Proust sketch.
    posted by Kattullus at 5:20 AM PST - 11 comments

    Christopher Logue, 1926-2011
    "Almost everything I do is based on other texts anyway. Without plagiarism, there would be no literature. I'm a rewrite man." The poet Christoper Logue has died, aged 85. Logue had a varied career, at various points serving in the British Army (and being arrested for espionage after a drunken threat to sell secrets), writing pornography under the nom de plume Count Palmiro de Vicarion, recording George Martin-produced, "heroically daft" jazz recitals of the poems of Pablo Neruda (YT) and regularly contributing to the British satirical magazine Private Eye, where he edited Pseuds' Corner, while finding the time to be arrested again, for civil disobedience as part of Bertrand Russell's Committee of 100. [more inside]
    posted by running order squabble fest at 4:47 AM PST - 14 comments

    Slices, dices
    20 Cool and Useful Kitchen Tools. Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.
    posted by twoleftfeet at 4:24 AM PST - 92 comments

    PENDULUM MUSIC FOR MICROPHONES, AMPLIFIERS, SPEAKERS AND PERFORMERS
    "2,3,4 or more microphones are suspended from the ceiling by their cables so that they all hang the same distance from the floor and are all free to swing with a pendular motion. Each microphone’s cable is plugged into an amplifier which is connected to a speaker. Each microphone hangs a few inches directly above or next to its speaker. [more inside]
    posted by misteraitch at 3:39 AM PST - 16 comments

    Howard Tate, soul man, 1939-2011
    The man who lent his wonderfully warm and soaring voice to the rolling soul ballad Get It While You Can, the limber southern funk of Eight Days on the Road, the coolly driving How Come My Bulldog Don't Bark, the mellow soul lilt (with breathtaking falsetto interjections!) of I Learned It All the Hard Way and so many other delightful soul numbers has died. Farewell Howard Tate. [more inside]
    posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:33 AM PST - 17 comments

    Buzzing about network graphs
    A hive plot (slides) is a beautiful and compelling way to visualize multiple, complex networks, without resorting to "hairball" graphs that are often difficult to qualitatively compare and contrast. [more inside]
    posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:07 AM PST - 14 comments

    December 3
    "Science writing tackles big ideas, important issues. It’s ambitious, creative, hard to do—yet utterly compelling."
    SCOPE is the all-online student publication for MIT's Graduate Program in Science Writing. [more inside]
    posted by kagredon at 11:50 PM PST - 4 comments

    It's the wrong Miliband!
    "John Humphrys and the velociraptor had decided to take the opportunity to play a friendly game of tennis, which had turned competitive very quickly." [more inside]
    posted by MartinWisse at 11:27 PM PST - 16 comments

    He wasn't a legend, and he wasn't mad.
    The Exegesis of Phillip K Dick has finally been published. A thousand pages of it, anyway. Editor Jonathan Lethem and two of PKD's daughter's got together to discuss it at a Berkeley book store. Introduction, Jonathan Lethem, From The Estate and Inside PKD's Mind, The Vision of the Source, Correspondence, How To Read It, Philosophy. [more inside]
    posted by empath at 11:25 PM PST - 40 comments

    UbuWeb Top Tens
    UbuWeb Top Tens, from Summer 2006 - December 2011.
    posted by beshtya at 11:03 PM PST - 6 comments

    You feel yourself turning into a small fish! You flop three times then die.
    Here is a ancient Apple II computer role-playing game system with over 250 scenarios. [more inside]
    posted by JHarris at 10:45 PM PST - 18 comments

    Moonwalking
    Remember the moonwalk? Of course you do. This is the first time it was performed in public. [more inside]
    posted by SpacemanStix at 10:33 PM PST - 46 comments

    In Xanadu did Kubla Khan A stately pleasure-dome decree
    Chinese archeologists have mapped the layout of Shangdu (better known as Xanadu), after large scale excavations that included the use of GIS in remote sensing and aerial archeology. The capital, located in Inner Mongolia, was built in 1256 under the command of Kublai Khan, the first emperor of Yuan Dynasty, who was enthroned there four years later. It became a summer resort after the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) moved its capital to Ta-tu or Dadu (built by the same architect, located in present-day Beijing) in 1276, and was destroyed during a peasant war at the end of the dynasty. The regional government has submitted an application for World Cultural Heritage status for the site to UNESCO, currently under review. Xanadu has captured the imagination of the West ever since Marco Polo first extolled its beauties in his Books of the Marvels of the World, subsequently immortalized by Coleridge in a poem fuelled by opium fevered dreams. Other recently discovered Yuan Dynasty artifacts include a priceless porcelain vase as well as a sunken ship - part of an invading Mongol armada - off the coast of Japan.
    posted by infini at 10:14 PM PST - 24 comments

    And then the robot overlords came and stomped on it all.
    A paper-craft history of the world. [SLVimeo] [more inside]
    posted by zennish at 10:09 PM PST - 5 comments

    Hüsker Dü
    As a historical document the book is exhaustive and valuable. But I did not come away feeling that I knew or understood Hüsker Dü — the musicians themselves, their music, or any of the people around them — any more intimately than I already did. Earles’ writing is at once densely opinionated and emotionless. He expertly follows the chronology of the band’s tours and releases, but he never makes it understandable why some of us look back on this band so reverently, or why it would be worth somebody’s time to discover Hüsker Dü today. (previously)
    posted by Trurl at 8:28 PM PST - 52 comments

    Powerpoint is a scourge on our economy
    A modest proposal to replace Powerpoint presentations with dancers. (TED talk) Demonstrated with dancers, naturally.
    posted by dry white toast at 7:19 PM PST - 21 comments

    Decline in technicolor.
    Kodak's long fade to black. 'Like the passing of distinguished individuals, the passing of great corporations should prompt us to ponder the transience of earthly glory. So let's pay our respects to Eastman Kodak, which at this writing appears to be a shutter-click from extinction.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 6:19 PM PST - 63 comments

    equal economic ignorance
    I was Wrong and So are You. I needed to retract the conclusions I’d trumpeted in The Wall Street Journal. The new results invalidated our original result: under the right circumstances, conservatives and libertarians were as likely as anyone on the left to give wrong answers to economic questions. The proper inference from our work is not that one group is more enlightened, or less. It’s that “myside bias”—the tendency to judge a statement according to how conveniently it fits with one’s settled position—is pervasive among all of America’s political groups. The bias is seen in the data, and in my actions. [more inside]
    posted by storybored at 6:03 PM PST - 41 comments

    Pokemon just got much much harder
    Rule no. 1: Catch the first Pokemon you encounter in each route/cave/whatever and nothing else. If you fail to catch it, too bad, continue onwards. Rule no. 2: If your Pokemon faints, consider it dead and release it. In 2010 a 4chan user posted these rules for making Pokemon more of a challenge, as well as a short comic on his exploits in a world where Pokemon can die. The "Nuzlocke" comic became wildly popular, spawning dozens of elaborate offshoots in comic and story form. [more inside]
    posted by melissam at 5:47 PM PST - 15 comments

    You look really pretty this week
    Next Time, On Lonny [A reality webseries where nothing much really happens during the show] [more inside]
    posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:14 PM PST - 42 comments

    Clearly showcases the main text of a webpage
    Evernote releases a new browser extension, Clearly, which elegantly presents a webpage's main article, shorn of all distracting adornments. It is currently Chrome-only, but will soon come to other browsers.
    posted by shivohum at 1:04 PM PST - 34 comments

    The Israeli Bank Robber Who Can Record Your Dreams
    "The moral of the story is: if someone asks you to rob a bank, say 'yes.'" (Via) [more inside]
    posted by zarq at 12:40 PM PST - 11 comments

    The Bomb Buried In Obamacare Explodes Today-Hallelujah!
    "This is the true ‘bomb’ contained in Obamacare and the one item that will have more impact on the future of how medical care is paid for in this country than anything we’ve seen in quite some time. Indeed, it is this aspect of the law that represents the true ‘death panel’ found in Obamacare—but not one that is going to lead to the death of American consumers. Rather, the medical loss ratio will, ultimately, lead to the death of large parts of the private, for-profit health insurance industry."
    posted by the young rope-rider at 11:48 AM PST - 147 comments

    Music AND Nude, Together for Almost the First Time
    One thing the interwebs has lacked is a one-stop source for pictures of naked people with various musical instruments. Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to bring you: MusicAndNude / My Hot Band! Does what it says on the tin. [NSFW, duh.] [more inside]
    posted by ZenMasterThis at 10:48 AM PST - 64 comments

    mmmHop
    Hanson beer: MMMHop Hanson, those three brothers who brought us MMMBop back in the mid-90s have decided to make beer. Not just any beer, however, this one is called....MMMHop. Apparently it's an IPA, because you know, the craft beer world just doesn't have enough of those. [more inside]
    posted by nickthetourist at 10:24 AM PST - 173 comments

    Thomas Hart Benton, Ozarker
    In From the Ozarks and Beyond (Part I), One of the Missouri Ozarks' greatest artists, Thomas Hart Benton (1889-1975), is discussed with regard to how the Ozarks influenced him and how he has influenced the Ozarks. (Part II, Part III).
    posted by Atreides at 9:09 AM PST - 8 comments

    Future shift
    PXP: The bicycle that knows what you're thinking (yt) [more inside]
    posted by bonehead at 8:44 AM PST - 37 comments

    Molly Crabapple's Week in Hell
    It was a simple and crazy idea: to celebrate her 28th birthday by renting a hotel room, cover it in paper and spend a week drawing on the paper. Welcome to Molly Crabapple's Week in Hell with photos of work in progress and panoramas of the completed room.
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:36 AM PST - 57 comments

    Goodbye, Galaxy!
    Commander Keen is series of platform games from the early 1990s, whence the Dopefish. People who grew up with DOS games will find gameplay videos and music quite nostalgic. Over the period 2006-2011, modders released a new Keen trilogy called The Universe Is Toast. Gameplay is a novel mix of eerily familiar and the flat-out weird.
    posted by shii at 5:23 AM PST - 28 comments

    Click.
    Reuters Best Photos of the Year.
    posted by crossoverman at 2:28 AM PST - 55 comments

    December 2
    Find the Spam
    Here is an artifact of the old internet: "Somewhere in the picture below we have cleverly hidden a can of spam.  If you think you've found the spam, click on it to find out if you're right.  You probably don't think there is any spam in the picture, but look closely.  Most people only find the spam after staring intently at the picture for several hours.
    "Good luck and find that spam!" [more inside]
    posted by JHarris at 9:56 PM PST - 71 comments

    Goats Up In Smoke
    This years Gavle Goat has already been set ablaze. The Gävle Goat was mentioned on the blue a few years ago. The Gävle Goat is a 13-meter (42+ feet) tall straw structure that’s built in the center of Gävle, Sweden at Christmastime every year. And every year somebody has tried to burn this giant Yuletide Goat to the ground. Often successfully. Well, it happened again today at 2:54 am. This year there is film of the fire as well as a live webcam of its charred remains.
    posted by hubs at 9:41 PM PST - 24 comments

    In 3D!
    First 3D movie of orgasm in the female brain. [more inside]
    posted by twoleftfeet at 7:42 PM PST - 55 comments

    John Zorn's "Spillane"
    Using his "file card" technique to create the title piece "Spillane" (whereby musical ideas written on note cards form the basis for discreet sound blocks arranged by way of a unifying theme), John Zorn forges an impressionistic narrative out of stretches of live-music jazz, blues, country, lounge, thrash, etc., and a variety of samples and spoken dialogue inspired by Mickey Spillane's Mike Hammer detective novels (recited by John Lurie). - AllMusic [more inside]
    posted by Trurl at 7:28 PM PST - 7 comments

    Don’t Give Up . . . Don’t Ever Give Up!
    Jim Valvano and 6th seeded North Carolina State completed one of the all time greatest Cinderella upsets in basketball history, winning the 1983 NCAA tournament title over the top ranked "Phi Slamma Jamma" out of Houston, featuring two future Hall of Fame and Top 50 all time NBA superstars Clyde Drexler and Hakeem Olajuwon. On March 3, 1993, shortly before his death from bone cancer diagnosed the previous year, Jimmy V delivered an iconic speech at the inaugural ESPY awards announcing the creation of The Jimmy V Foundation, an organization dedicated to finding a cure for cancer. Jimmy V week is celebrated each year on ESPN and has since raised over $100 million for cancer research.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 6:06 PM PST - 14 comments

    Occupy Jazz!
    Trumpet player Nicholas Payton, aka @paynic on Twitter, recently posted a highly poetic essay (or highly essay-like poem) entitled On Why Jazz Isn't Cool Any More. [more inside]
    posted by motty at 5:53 PM PST - 47 comments

    Life After Death
    "The best way I can describe our predicament to someone outside our culture is to call up the sensation of orgasm. You lose control of your destiny, and you are grateful for the loss. Time dissolves. Nothing that came before matters. You lose all sense of consequences and would sacrifice anything to safeguard the moment. Then, just seconds later, the blighted past and an uncertain future rush back in to drown you." Michael Harris writes in Walrus Magazine about coming of age in the long shadow of the AIDS epidemic. via utne. [more inside]
    posted by jquinby at 5:48 PM PST - 14 comments

    Sun Microsystems?
    The House of the Rising Sun, on old Computer Equipment
    posted by rusty at 5:12 PM PST - 27 comments

    "Perfect Storm" Lobster Tags found 20 years later
    Perfect Storm lobster tags wash up 3000 miles and 20 years later. Here's the US version of the story. Ocean currents hero Curt Ebbesmeyer (previously), "studier of flotsam," believes the tags were likely stuck in mud, then meandered around the Atlantic until arriving last year in Waterville, County Kerry, Ireland. There is a monument to the lives of fisherman lost in Gloucester and includes over 10,000 names dating back to 1716, including those from the Andrea Gail.
    posted by eggman at 4:42 PM PST - 31 comments

    Just relax a little bit.
    Need a hug? Take a visit to the nicest place on the internet.
    posted by to sir with millipedes at 4:12 PM PST - 69 comments

    And this is how you die
    How do people die in motor "accidents"? I'll tell you. With the Christmas "Silly Season" is upon us, the Age has republished And this is how you die by journalist Roger Aldridge. A warning - it's pretty graphic. Scroll up for the rest of the article.
    posted by mattoxic at 4:02 PM PST - 95 comments

    The Score With The Dragon Tattoo
    Hot on the heels of winning both the Golden Globe and the Oscar for Best Score in 2010 for their work on The Social Network, Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross have announced the release of the score for the upcoming David Fincher film, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. The 39-track, three-disk set can be purchased for a surprisingly affordable $14 (as opposed to Amazon's current price of $20) and comes with a digital download of the album. Other versions are also available, including a $300 "Deluxe" set which includes six vinyl records and will be signed by Reznor and Ross. A six-track sampler of the album is available for free download at the Null Co page (email address required). [more inside]
    posted by hippybear at 3:17 PM PST - 48 comments

    Escaping the death trap.
    Submarine escape: A WWII survival tale. 'Seventy years ago, off the Greek island of Kefalonia, the British submarine HMS Perseus hit an Italian mine, sparking one of the greatest and most controversial survival stories of World War II.' 'Despite being awarded a medal for his escape, John Capes's story was so extraordinary that many people, both within and outside the Navy, doubted it.' He 'died in 1985 but it was not until 1997 that his story was finally verified.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 2:37 PM PST - 9 comments

    It was Once Much Easier to inhabit public space.
    Seeing so many Occupiers getting evicted made me think of this short 1988 documentary by Nancy Kalow on homeless squatter punk teens in the Bay Area (warning:cringe-inducing rapping in the opening scene). From their stories, it seems as if they had free reign of the abandoned Berkeley Polytech building for a while. Readers of Cometbus who aren't from the Bay Area can see a bit of the scene he made sound so attractive. 1993 sequel, The Losers Club.
    posted by shushufindi at 2:14 PM PST - 5 comments

    Women for Herman Cain
    Beleaguered U.S. Presidential candidate Herman Cain's campaign has created a feature on their website entitled "Women for Herman Cain" (or just "Women for Cain" in some places) where women can post their support for him in the form of text testimonials and videos. Jezebel snarks, Palin sympathizes, and Mediaite observes that the first version of the site prominently featured a stock photo of four women with their thumbs up in approval.
    posted by aught at 1:58 PM PST - 143 comments

    Assorted Street Posters
    This collection of street posters, mad scribblings, political screeds, religious rants, and paranoid raves was collected on the streets of New York City from 1985 to the present. Some time ago, it occurred to me that the streets are as full of art as, say, thrift shops are full of great paintings. So, inspired by Jim Shaw's collection Thrift Shop Paintings, Adolf Wölfli's visionary scrawls, and outsider music, I began carrying a portable razor with me whilst out on casual strolls. What began as a hobby has remained an obsession and this obsession is brought to you in living color here on UbuWeb. Keep checking back as this page is constantly updated. I have hundreds of examples to share with you, as as time permits, they'll all eventually appear here. -- Kenneth Goldsmith, Assorted Street Posters
    posted by beshtya at 1:04 PM PST - 13 comments

    Most of his noteworthy accomplishments happened in said middle part
    A life well remembered: a quirky obituary endears a Connecticut professor to a new audience
    posted by Frank Grimes at 12:56 PM PST - 20 comments

    86 DST?
    Daylight Saving Time Explained - It is time to abolish DST? Russia did, and some Alaskans want to, while Indiana recently got on board (despite evidence that DST doesn't save energy), and Hawaii and Arizona just laugh. (previously (and more recently previously))
    posted by mrgrimm at 12:38 PM PST - 105 comments

    Trapped In China?
    Anticipating a season long lockout, several NBA players signed contracts with teams in the Chinese Basketball Association. Now that a labor deal has been reached, leaving for the NBA won't be easy.
    posted by reenum at 12:04 PM PST - 25 comments

    Liefeldian Thigh Pouches
    "...they essentially published years of comics for the sole purpose of saying 'Fine, that's how you want it? Here you go. Enjoy.' They made a character out of pure sarcasm, and he had his own ongoing series for a hundred issues."
    Chris Sims on Azrael.
    posted by griphus at 11:55 AM PST - 28 comments

    Paint your own Dreamliner
    Boeing's got a new web app up that allows you to paint your own Dreamliner. They've also got a pretty cool gallery up of all the pretty (and not so pretty) 787s people have dreamed (sigh) up.
    posted by kjars at 11:33 AM PST - 20 comments

    The S-T period to the I-D-E to the S!
    In 1991, Ice Cube was a force of nature. The idea that he could someday star in Are We There Yet? was inconceivable. Still, commercialism wasn't foreign to him. He shilled St. Ides malt liquor as furiously as he called out the police.
    St. Ides, manufactured by Pabst Brewing Company, targeted young black people. They built an advertising strategy around rappers and hired DJ Pooh to produce beats and commercials. Rappers responded with zeal. [more inside]
    posted by ignignokt at 11:05 AM PST - 83 comments

    Never talk to a Style reporter!
    Gawker: How the NYT Style section trolls their readers.
    posted by The Whelk at 9:46 AM PST - 69 comments

    All Hail King Zog!
    Leka I Zogu died November 30, 2011 at the age of 72. When he was less than 48 hours old, Mussolini's troops invaded Albania and drove out his father, King Zog I of Albania, and the rest of the royal family. He spent the rest of his life fleeing invading armies, stockpiling weaponry, trading commodities, attempting coups, returning to Albania (three times), and eventually settling into a quiet life in the very country where he refused to relenquish his claims to the throne. [more inside]
    posted by Eyebrows McGee at 9:12 AM PST - 39 comments

    We got some right, some not so right.
    "They may well do it." [The Guardian] Sir Arthur C Clarke predicted in a lost BBC interview that the Russians would win the space race by landing the first man on the moon in 1968, probably on the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution. Arthur C Clarke on The Sky at Night – video.
    posted by Fizz at 8:32 AM PST - 38 comments

    "We were originally from Trenton, and I performed at a lot of PTA functions."
    Jonathan and Darlene Edwards were a musical duo famous (or infamous) for their off-key but spirited interpretations of such classics as Tiptoe through the Tulips and I Am Woman. [more inside]
    posted by usonian at 8:14 AM PST - 25 comments

    Careers, Parents, and the 1%
    Your parents have a huge influence on your future career. A single chart from the Journal of Labor Economics shows how much the top 1% benefit from their parent's success and networks (Results are from Canada, but the same is observed elsewhere). Nepotism is a very common phenomenon, and explains part of why income mobility between generations can be such a problem. Beyond the importance of parental networks and money, however, there is evidence that our genes influence our career choices, including whether you become an entrepreneur.
    posted by blahblahblah at 7:26 AM PST - 71 comments

    The Arctic is failing.
    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has released its 2011 Arctic Report Card. Persistent warming has caused dramatic changes in the Arctic Ocean and the ecosystem it supports. Ocean changes include reduced sea ice and freshening of the upper ocean, and impacts such as increased biological productivity at the base of the food chain and loss of habit for walrus and polar bears. [more inside]
    posted by ChuraChura at 7:17 AM PST - 25 comments

    Yogurt!
    This baby loves yogurt. via
    posted by Deathalicious at 7:06 AM PST - 40 comments

    Evolution and the Illusion of randomness.
    Evolution and the Illusion of randomness. (By Steve Talbott at netfuture.org)
    posted by seanyboy at 6:41 AM PST - 44 comments

    People keep calling me Five Alive
    In