The Incunabula Papers or Ong’s Hat "were the abbreviated titles of documents that someone—probably a group of four provocateurs—posted on The Well, a pioneering Internet social site in the late 1980s...After sitting largely dormant on the social Web site for a decade, the documents provoked a widespread 'immersive legend-trip' in the late 1990s." [more inside] posted by Ouisch at 10:10 PM PST - 5 comments
"Oh, Anne! With your small head and pert nose and oversized, ready smile and glossy pixie cut and squeakily tuneful speaking voice, uttering lines like “It came true!” as you gaze at your newly won Oscar with moistened doe-eyes, wearing a powder-pink Prada gown adorned with diamonds and bows: Why are you so annoying?" posted by vidur at 8:15 PM PST - 140 comments
Makers: Women Who Make America is a sweeping 3-hour documentary of the movement for women's equality in the last half of the twentieth century. Airing this month on US public television, it's accompanied by an online archive of videos of interviews with individual women in leadership across a variety of fields. Leaders and activists, celebrities and pioneers, and everyday women retell the story of their awakening, organizing, and world-changing efforts. posted by Miko at 5:34 PM PST - 5 comments
Allan B. Calhamer, creator of the board game Diplomacy, passed away on February 25th. Despite the game's success he never made a living off it, and worked for many years as a mail carrier in La Grange Park, Illinois. Chicago Magazine published a profile of him in 2009. posted by 23 at 4:43 PM PST - 39 comments
Such absurd equations show how homosexuality became a floating signifier, associated with whatever political tendency one most disliked. Rather than representing a certain group of people, it represented everything that was wrong—whatever that meant. America’s Red Scare bled into its Lavender Scare; the Soviets associated homosexuality with capitalism and fascism. But empty as it was, the political use of the trope of homosexuality had a devastating effect on real people from both countries.
"In a stunning first for neuroscience, researchers have created an electronic link between the brains of two rats, and demonstrated that signals from the mind of one can help the second solve basic puzzles in real time — even when those animals are separated by thousands of miles." posted by sarastro at 10:56 AM PST - 78 comments
"Dan hates himself; he also worships himself, and the fact that 90 people will come to every show that we do, and they'll love him — I think it's an experiment in finding out whether or not those people are being sincere. 'Do they really like me, or do they like the idea of me? Am I good person? What if I came out onstage and didn't do a show? What if I just rapped about fucking your mother? What if I didn't do anything? What if I took my shirt off, and I'm fat? What if I go off my diet? What if my girlfriend came out and told you I called her a c---? Would you still like me?'" Dan Harmon and Life After 'Community' posted by Rory Marinich at 10:50 AM PST - 52 comments
Gallup Healthways has released its state-by-state well being index for 2012. According to the methodology page, the index is based on a survey in which participants are asked about their life evaluation, emotional health, physical health, work environment, and basic access to necessities. For the fourth consecutive year, Hawaii had the highest index score and West Virginia the lowest. The top five states were: Hawaii, Colorado, Minnesota, Utah, and Vermont. The lowest five were: West Virginia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas. posted by Area Man at 10:49 AM PST - 31 comments
Of Ministers and Merchants, Sinners and Saints. The writer moved from Manhattan to same street in Brooklyn where his grandmother grew up. This prompts him to delve into his family history, where he discovers a cast of characters that includes Ulpianus Van Sinderen, a Dutch Reformed Minister who came to Brooklyn in 1747, prosperous merchants, tenant housing reformer Alfred Tredway White, and an embezzler. Brief appearances by Jacob Riis and Truman Capote. posted by marxchivist at 9:08 AM PST - 3 comments
"The author, whose novels thrum with ironic recurrences, might have been perversely pleased with this: thirty-six years after his death and twenty-two years after the fall of the Soviet Union with all its khudsovets, Vladimir Nabokov is, once again, controversial."
Why are owls so wise? Perhaps it's because they're utter badasses.
Ferocity is essential for a bird whose frigid, spotty range extends across northeastern China, the Russian Far East and up toward the Arctic Circle, one that breeds and nests in the dead of winter, perched atop a giant cottonwood or elm tree, out in the open, in temperatures 30 degrees below zero Fahrenheit. Dr. Slaght’s colleague Sergei Surmach videotaped a female sitting on her nest during a blizzard. “All you could see at the end was her tail jutting out,” Dr. Slaght said.
As the NYT reported in 1948: The ceiling of the East Room, elaborately done in the frescoes of fruits and reclining women and weighing seventy pounds to the square foot, was found to be sagging six inches on Oct. 26, and now is being held in place by scaffolding and supports.... But it took the $50,000 survey authorized by Congress to disclose the fact that the marble grand staircase is in imminent danger. Supporting bricks, bought second hand in 1880, are disintegrating. So in 1950 a renovation began: this is what the White House looks like completely gutted. [more inside] posted by IvoShandor at 6:41 AM PST - 38 comments
For generations both societies lived apart from humanity, united in their common experience as outcasts. But as so often happens when downcast but fanatical groups find themselves in the ascendancy, today their factionalism is exposed and the rivalry has erupted into open conflict. [more inside] posted by GhostintheMachine at 6:17 AM PST - 25 comments
"Misadventures was written in a flat, artless style — as The Daily Telegraph’s critic put it, like “a cross between a police officer giving evidence in court and a slightly demented grandmother intent on telling you everything over a cup of tea”. The curious tale of Sylvia Smith - the author who achieved fame in her fifties on the publication of her memoir of an ordinary life, one which sometimes baffled critics. posted by mippy at 4:06 AM PST - 22 comments
Actor and producer Jesse Williams has written an article about the issues he has with Quentin Tarantino's film Django Unchained, including the ahistorical portrayal of slavery and the lack of agency shown by the movie's black characters. He expands the argument on his blog (image NSFW). posted by Charlemagne In Sweatpants at 8:10 PM PST - 95 comments
Scott Simpson, of the podcast You Look Nice Today (Previously) and inventor of Pillowdrome, offers advice on how to be less boring on the Internet: Don’t take it too hard. We’re all boring. At best, we’re recovering bores. Each day offers a hundred ways for us to bore the crap out of the folks with whom we live, work, and drink. And on the internet, you’re able to bore thousands of people at once. posted by Cash4Lead at 7:10 PM PST - 67 comments
Canadian cartoonist and animator Michael Deforge has been furiously productive over the past few years, producing a seemingly endless series of minicomics, four issues of his increasingly influential one-man anthology series Lose, short pieces for magazines, concert posters, and dozens of one-off illustrations, blog posts and anthology contributions. His comics are a queasy mix of body horror (reminiscent of his countryman David Cronenberg), creeping anxiety, and surprisingly sharp humor. [more inside] posted by Merzbau at 5:24 PM PST - 10 comments
Legacies of British Slave-ownership , which went live on February 27, 2013, tracks what became of the twenty million pounds set aside to compensate British slave owners in the Act for the Abolition of Slavery throughout the British Colonies (1833). Users have a variety of search options that can yield results according to individuals, businesses, countries, and so on. The site tracks compensated owners through their contributions to the arts, politics, entrepreneurship, and governance; some owners have extensive biographical notes. A number of the site's revelations about slave-owning families and the extent of their compensation have already attracted comment. [more inside] posted by thomas j wise at 4:39 PM PST - 26 comments
Historically the United States (on a state by state basis) has given almost complete freedom to parents to name their children, both first name and surname, with results like "Fly-fornication," "Mahershalalhashbaz," "Encyclopedia Britannia," "States Rights" (who was killed in battle as an officer for the confederacy), "Trailing Arbutus Vines" and many more. (Naming Baby: The Constitutional Dimensions of Parental Naming Rights, Carlton F.W. Larson, 2011 [SSRN/PDF]). In October 2012, however, New York courts made two interesting rulings that reflect limitations on renaming, if not naming, rights, for both adults and children. [more inside] posted by Salamandrous at 3:03 PM PST - 54 comments
Then Christine stumbled upon a controversial homemade herbal remedy that she credits with enormously improving her dog's quality of life. She's grateful that, in his final year, Sampson weighed in at a robust 106 pounds and lived free of the wracking pain that had haunted him. Whereas before Sampson had been too weak to walk, almost overnight he became a born-again youngster. "He was a puppy again, happy and playful," Christine recalls. "He'd trot around the house with his toys in his mouth, wanting to play fetch!"Legalize medical marijuana for dogs! (Don't miss the great picture of Mason the Vizsla looking very relaxed!) [more inside] posted by grobstein at 2:44 PM PST - 50 comments
Marshall Sahlins, a leading American anthropologist, resigned last week from the National Academy of Sciences. This may come as a shock to the scientific community and even to students at NYU. Anyone taking an introductory course to anthropology at NYU, for example, is bound to encounter several readings of Sahlins’s work. Among his more influential works are “Historical Metaphors and Mythical Realities,” a case study of the murder of Captain Cook in Hawaii and how it was the result of underlying social factors. Normally, when a scientist or scholar resigns from such a prestigious position, one assumes that he probably committed an irrevocable and egregious error that forever taints his credibility as an academic. However, our assumptions sometimes deceive us. If we explore the reasoning and motivations behind Sahlins’s resignation, we may arrive at deeper insights into the issues at play. posted by infini at 2:15 PM PST - 14 comments
6 Insane Stereotypes That Movies Can't Seem to Get Over. Cracked.com list of overused, tired and offensive stereotypes of Africa, Asians, women, and more that frequently pop up in mainstream films.
"Imagine if every single movie set in America was filmed in Alaska and focused on gang violence -- that's how Africans feel every time they watch a Hollywood movie about warlords fighting in the desert. Which is a problem for their tourism industry: A board member for the Association for the Promotion of Tourism to Africa even takes the time to explain that there are "middle class people in every African country commuting to work every day, complaining about taxes and watching their kids play soccer every weekend."
That's right: Instead of focusing on the rich wildlife and history, the tourism industry actually has to remind people that coming to their country isn't a fucking death warrant." posted by sweetkid at 1:07 PM PST - 147 comments
The BBC reports that "Beer drinkers in the US have filed a $5m (£3.3m) lawsuit accusing Anheuser-Busch of watering down its beer." The lawsuits are based on information from former employees at breweries owned by the multinational. [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 6:47 AM PST - 125 comments
Abstract: Cycling is popular among children, but results in thousands of injuries annually. In recent years, many states and localities have enacted bicycle helmet laws. We examine direct and indirect effects of these laws on injuries. Using hospital-level panel data and triple difference models, we find helmet laws are associated with reductions in bicycle-related head injuries among children. However, laws also are associated with decreases in non-head cycling injuries, as well as increases in head injuries from other wheeled sports. Thus, the observed reduction in bicycle-related head injuries may be due to reductions in bicycle riding induced by the laws. [FULL TEXT PDF][more inside] posted by Blasdelb at 5:15 AM PST - 157 comments
Joe Moran reflects on the 1980s: "We like to give decades a uniform character as they retreat into history, safely burying the past by turning it into retro kitsch. The Observing the 1980s project is valuable because it does not treat the decade like this, as a story we already know the ending to. Instead it becomes an era of still-to-be-decided tensions and possibilities - one in which people sincerely people that David Steel might be prime minister (“my pin-up!” says one Mass Observer), that Margaret Thatcher might lose an election, or that the neo-liberal economic revolution might still be reversed. How I miss that sense of earnestness – and I mean that without a trace of irony." [more inside] posted by Gilgongo at 4:49 AM PST - 7 comments
Here's a Youtube video of people refusing to submit to questioning and searches by the Department of Homeland Security and California's produce checkpoints. [more inside] posted by deborah at 1:15 AM PST - 122 comments
If Doom and Nethack lived in Estonia and had a baby, it'd be named Teleglitch, a recently released pixelated action roguelike that will completely murder you if you're not very careful about how you explore its procedurally-generated corridors, fighting off former coworkers, crafting spare parts into new stuff and hunting for ammo and food and clues as to what the hell went so terribly wrong at the Militech R&D facility on Medusa 1-C. The game has a 4-level demo (Windows and Linux, Mac too apparently) which will probably kick your ass plenty all by itself. [more inside] posted by cortex at 1:47 PM PST - 56 comments
I spent several days and nights in mid-September with an ailing pig and I feel driven to account for this stretch of time, more particularly since the pig died at last, and I lived, and things might easily have gone the other way round and none left to do the accounting. Even now, so close to the event, I cannot recall the hours sharply and am not ready to say whether death came on the third night or the fourth night. This uncertainty afflicts me with a sense of personal deterioration; if I were in decent health I would know how many nights I had sat up with a pig.
In an essay in the Kenyon Review, former Sweet Valley High ghostwriter Amy Boesky, now an Associate Professor of English at Boston College, writes about her experience ghostwriting, how she got started, why she kept ghostwriting while also pursuing her Ph.D., and why she eventually stopped.
Interviews with other Sweet Valley ghostwriters are here, here, and here. posted by Area Man at 11:14 AM PST - 28 comments
In the Middle Ages, animals that did bad things were tried in court. Maybe that’s not as crazy as it sounds. "In the fall of 1457, villagers in Savigny, France witnessed a sow and six piglets attack and kill a 5-year-old boy. Today, the animals would be summarily killed. But errant 15th-century French pigs went to court. And it wasn’t for a show trial—this was the real deal, equipped with a judge, two prosecutors, eight witnesses, and a defense attorney for the accused swine. Witness testimony proved beyond reasonable doubt that the sow had killed the child. The piglets’ role, however, was ambiguous. Although splattered with blood, they were never seen directly attacking the boy. The judge sentenced the sow to be hanged by her hind feet from a “gallows tree.” The piglets, by contrast, were exonerated." posted by bookman117 at 9:27 AM PST - 49 comments
When we return, our eyes will have shrunken into tiny slots and we will forage on the ground for centipedes and other high-protein foods we can feel with our hands. A first-hand account of Rihanna's 777 tour. Day One: There may be 777 tour babies nine months from now. Stockholm (Syndrome). Cray In Paris. posted by the young rope-rider at 8:02 AM PST - 47 comments
Psychohistory, the imaginary scientific field created by Isaac Asimov in his "Foundation" series, may no longer be fiction:
Song Chaoming, for instance, is a researcher at Northeastern University in Boston. He is a physicist, but he moonlights as a social scientist. With that hat on he has devised an algorithm which can look at someone’s mobile-phone records and predict with an average of 93% accuracy where that person is at any moment of any day. Given most people’s regular habits (sleep, commute, work, commute, sleep), this might not seem too hard. What is impressive is that his accuracy was never lower than 80% for any of the 50,000 people he looked at.
In 1963, BBC production designer Raymond Cusick was asked to design the first monster for a new show, Doctor Who. Terry Nation's script required aliens called "Daleks" whose hobbies included world-domination and shouting "exterminate". In response, Cusick came up with the amazing and even iconic Dalek design which spawned Dalek-Mania across the world. [more inside] posted by w0mbat at 10:40 PM PST - 60 comments
The original point of the sequester was that it would be terrible and “inflexible,” which would force Congress to choose a less terrible path, but obviously trusting Congress to not pick the most terrible of all available options was something of a gamble. So yes, sure, “flexibility,” but also maybe just “let’s not do this.” Unfortunately, “let’s just not do this” never comes up as an option on any of the shows, which all presented the argument as, on one side, “flexibility,” and on the other side, “a balanced approach,” which means a shitload of unnecessary cuts plus a bit more tax revenue, which sound nice but is still pointless contractionary policy.
There's been quite the political earthquake in Italy this weekend: the latest national elections have up-ended all expectations, with Silvio Berlusconi's populist right bouncing back to a photo-finish against the forecasted favourite center-left coalition, headed by Pier Luigi Bersani. But it's neither of their results that will cause the real aftershocks - those are the sole honour (and, now, onus) of the most meteoric of political entities Europe has ever witnessed: former comic Beppe Grillo's 5-Star MoVement, formally founded just three years ago, have crowned their national electoral debut by earning over 25% of the popular vote, becoming Italy's leading political force. [more inside] posted by progosk at 4:27 PM PST - 71 comments
And that's a bad idea. Much of standard group behavior data in Sociology/Economics/Psychology is based on Americans. Which don't seem (contrary to universal assumptions) to be shared by a lot of the World. posted by aleph at 1:27 PM PST - 53 comments
As you know Bob, the Dutch have long known how to deal with the threat of flooding, living in a country that was largely conquered from the sea. Over the centuries the Netherlands has learned to put its trust in bigger and higher dykes, dams and various increasingly clever solutions to keep the sea where it's wanted and away from where it would be a nuisance. There's a new threat however, that can't be solved with higher dykes, a threat that needs to accomodated by doing something very un-Dutch: reflood parts of the Netherlands. [more inside] posted by MartinWisse at 11:39 PM PST - 31 comments
Focus on one person in the middle of the crowd throughout your speech. Afterward, trail him home. Knock on his door. Offer an introduction like, "Hi. I’m from the speech. Earlier." He’ll reply with something along the lines of, "I know. Um…what are you doing here?" "I thought"—you’ll stammer, searching for the right words—"I just thought we could hang out, maybe, and be friends." "I have friends," he’ll probably say. "And I’m with my family now." Blurt out, too quickly, "I’m not trying to replace your family!" He’ll close the door in your face, gently, more out of pity than fear. Don’t use him as a crowd-focusing person for the next speech, because it would be weird.
The Windows of New York project is a weekly illustrated fix for an obsession that has increasingly grown in me since chance put me in this town. A product of countless steps of journey through the city streets, this is a collection of windows that somehow have caught my restless eye out from the never-ending buzz of the city. This project is part an ode to architecture and part a self-challenge to never stop looking up.By Jose Guizar.[Via]. posted by chavenet at 1:48 PM PST - 9 comments
Kevin Pang's profile of Chicago chef Curtis Duffy recounts how Duffy emerged from a turbulent family life to become a Michelin-starred chef. [more inside] posted by BibiRose at 10:09 AM PST - 11 comments
Performers who project relatability but have nothing elusive about them do better as network-television stars, or maybe morning-show anchormen. (Exception: Hanks.) On the other hand, if all you're capable of projecting is mystery and you're a quart low on relatability, you are probably a douchebag. (Exception: Fassbender.)
Post & Prejudice: [guardian.co.uk] "The Royal Mail is joining in the celebrations to mark the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice with the release of a series of stamps featuring all six of Jane Austen's novels. Royal Mail commissioned the artwork by Angela Barrett." [Slideshow] posted by Fizz at 8:08 AM PST - 13 comments
Melton Barker and the Kidnappers Foil. From the late 1930s into the early 1970s, Dallas native, Melton Barker and his company, Melton Barker Juvenile Productions, traveled all over the country – from Texas and New Mexico to North Carolina and Indiana – filming local children acting, singing, and dancing in two-reel films that Barker titled The Kidnappers Foil. (NY Times story) [more inside] posted by Bunny Ultramod at 8:06 AM PST - 1 comments
The Englishman and the eel is a photo essay of 93 images (thumbnails here; 2 pages) and article by London photographer Stuart Freedman that "attempts to look at (amongst other things) the significance and the decline of the eel and its fading from the changing London consciousness" with snapshots of "those palaces of Cockney culture, the Pie and Mash shops." [more inside] posted by taz at 4:40 AM PST - 30 comments
Bloomberg: "Britain [UK] lost its top credit rating by Moody’s Investors Service, which cited weakness in the nation’s growth outlook and challenges to the government’s fiscal consolidation program. The rating on the U.K. was lowered one level to AA1 from AAA and the outlook on the nation’s debt changed to stable from negative, Moody’s said in a statement yesterday." [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 3:10 PM PST - 50 comments
Provincial is an AI that plays the card game Dominion (previously). The author of the bot has a section on how it works, and the application is available for download if you want to test your skill against it. Via the Dominion Strategy forums, where the author (techmatt) chimes in partway through the thread. posted by codacorolla at 1:26 PM PST - 9 comments
The 80s horror film genre called, and then you got a beep and turn-based squad tactics video games were on the other line, and it was a pretty confusing phone call basically but in the end you got the message that someone wanted Camp Keepalive back. Because it is awesome. And it runs on Windows and OSX and you should download the demo right now. [more inside] posted by cortex at 10:49 AM PST - 39 comments
Durch die Nacht mit... (Into the Night with...) lets you be a fly on the wall as two interesting people get to know each other. "The series matches artists from different fields to spend an evening together in a city of their choice. The idea is to create a forum for artists to exchange ideas and also show them as real people."(IMDB). Guests have included Julie Delpy, Reggie Watts, Tori Amos, Crispin Glover and Ai Weiwei. [more inside] posted by far flung at 9:37 AM PST - 8 comments
Evolution of Mom Dancing [SLYT] In honor of the First Lady's "Let's Move" campaign, and to encourage parents everywhere to get up and get moving with their kids, Jimmy Fallon and Michelle Obama present the "Evolution of Mom Dancing." posted by Fizz at 7:59 AM PST - 55 comments
"In between surviving multiple point-blank-range assassination attempts and a failed kidnapping in which he emerged alive from the burning wreckage of a battleship his own air force had just bombed, Pibulsongkram decided that Thailand needed noodles that would advance the country’s industry and economy." posted by moonmilk at 7:16 AM PST - 35 comments
Last school year in Chicago, 29 current and recent students of Harper High School in the Englewood neighborhood were shot. Of those, 8 students died. For one semester (five months) reporters from the NPR show This American Life interviewed students and staff at Harper. The reporters wanted to know: How do students live with the violence surrounding them? How does the school staff deal with the effects of violence on students? The resulting two episodes of the show answer these questions (and more) in heartbreaking and surprising ways.
Part one here.Part two here. posted by Misty_Knightmare at 9:48 PM PST - 30 comments
Greetings, Metafilter! You are interested in bad movies. The Food Fight. The Star Wars Holiday Special. The Unknown and the Mysterious. And now, for the first time, we are bringing you the full story of what happened. We are giving you all the evidence based only on the secret testimony of the miserable souls who survived this terrifying ordeal. Can your heart stand the shocking true story of the world’s only anti-drug, mutant-monster, born-again-Christian film, Blood Freak? [more inside] posted by EmpressCallipygos at 5:32 PM PST - 20 comments
The God Machine formed in San Diego in 1990, and within a year or so had moved to London. Between then and their untimely demise in 1994, they would record two albums – Scenes From The Second Storey and One Last Laugh In A Place Of Dying – a handful of EPs and a particularly intense Peel Session. They're one of the great unsung bands of the 1990s, and though short-lived, they were a bridge between their predecessors – Black Sabbath, Swans, Janes Addiction – and those they would subsequently influence, such as Mogwai and Godspeed You! Black Emperor. They were heavy but they were much more than that too. [more inside] posted by Len at 4:46 PM PST - 8 comments
The Crown Prosecution Service insisted on getting a statement from PC (Police Constable) Peach, even after it was pointed out that the officer in question was in fact PD (Police Dog) Peach, so eventually the West Midlands Police provided the demanded witness statement. posted by kmz at 3:04 PM PST - 19 comments
Last August, a book titled "Leapfrogging" hit The Wall Street Journal's list of best-selling business titles upon its debut. The following week, sales of the book, written by first-time author Soren Kaplan, plunged 99% and it fell off the list. [...] But the short moment of glory doesn't always occur by luck alone. In the cases mentioned above, the authors hired a marketing firm that purchased books ahead of publication date, creating a spike in sales that landed titles on the lists. posted by Chrysostom at 8:43 AM PST - 26 comments
"A talented writer such as John Jeremiah Sullivan might, fifty years ago, have tried to explore his complicated feelings about the South, and about race and class in America, by writing fiction, following in the footsteps of Walker Percy and Eudora Welty. Instead he produced a book of essays, called Pulphead, on the same themes; and the book was received with the kind of serious attention and critical acclaim that were once reserved for novels. But all is not as it seems. You do not have to read very far in the work of the new essayists to realize that the resurrection of the essay is in large measure a mirage." (via) [more inside] posted by Rustic Etruscan at 7:53 AM PST - 13 comments
As if a line like "their house is a museum, when people come to see 'em, they really are a scree-am" (heard, of course, in the Addams Family theme) wasn't playfully brilliant (and brilliantly playful) enough, the same fellow happened to also have written the Green Acres theme. If you're an American of a certain age, you'll remember these two songs from their original TV runs during your childhood, or perhaps from reruns if you're a bit younger. Anyway, the composer of these catchy, familiar ditties was one VicMizzy. Hear Vic talk about the Addams Family theme and his degree in advanced finger snapping here. Thanks Vic! posted by flapjax at midnite at 12:24 AM PST - 21 comments
Flooded? A hurricane hit your house? Somebody left a cake book out in the rain and you'll never see that recipe again? Courtesy of Heritage Preservation: how to save wet books. posted by MartinWisse at 11:54 PM PST - 9 comments
Four Canadian film students were assigned a project: Create a YouTube hoax video that gets 100,000 views. They got nearly 42 million instead. Here’s the definitive behind-the-meme look at how—and why—their homework snowballed into one of the most popular and rapidly spread videos ever.
"Like a lot of things in Alaska, the annual Mount Marathon Race in Seward is famously brutal, even dangerous. Which is precisely why Michael LeMaitre ran it--the last day he was seen alive." posted by vidur at 6:13 PM PST - 32 comments
PiDGiN Restaurant is a lovely new restaurant in Vancouver. Located across the street one of the most challenged parks (Pigeon Park) in Vancouver's notorious Downtown Eastside. For some, it's a welcome addtion to the local dining scene. To others, it's a poke in the eye of the poor and disadvantaged living in possibly the worst neighbourhood in Canada and they want to put a stop to it.
. [more inside] posted by helmutdog at 6:10 PM PST - 82 comments
"A theory quickly emerged: that believers in climate science had been the main people taking Dr. Lewandowsky’s survey, but instead of answering honestly, had decided en masse to impersonate climate contrarians, giving the craziest possible answers so as to make the contrarians look like whack jobs.
So, a paper about a tendency among this group to believe in conspiracy theories was met by … a conspiracy theory." - Unlocking the Conspiracy Mind-Set[more inside] posted by brundlefly at 10:48 AM PST - 61 comments
Daily Telegraph: Why the world isn't running out of oil:
"Moreover, as well as bountiful oilfields in North America, Russia, Saudi Arabia and other producers in the Middle East, there are massive, barely tapped reserves in South America, Africa and the Arctic: not billions of barrels’ worth, but trillions. So the planet is not about to run out of oil. On the contrary, according to a Harvard University report published last year, we are heading for a glut.
The 75-page study, by oil executive Leonardo Maugeri, was based on a field-by-field analysis of most of the major oil exploration and development projects in the world, and it predicted a 20 per cent increase in global oil production by 2020." [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 2:09 AM PST - 69 comments
Paths of Hate is a highly stylized Polish CGI animated short movie which to an extent mimics traditional cel animation, but goes far beyond what's practically possible with traditional techniques. It also has some excellent, high-intensity aerial combat. Possibly NSFW for some light blood and gore. posted by Joakim Ziegler at 6:36 PM PST - 33 comments
I Wanna Be The Guy is a game so hard it borders on is outright masochism – hilarious, frustrating, glitchy masochism. One brave man, known only as Cloud8745, recorded himself playing the entire game, and documented his descent from frustration into incoherent gibbering madness. To get a feel for IWBTG, you may wish to start at the notorious Ghosts & Goblins section, which is particularly difficult, or, if you'd like a taste of its depraved sense of humor, this is among the game's funniest rooms. (The punchline comes two minutes later, but you can only truly appreciate it by watching Cloud struggle through it over and over again – generally, IWBTG gets funnier the longer you watch it be played.) If you'd like to watch the whole thing, there's [more inside] posted by Rory Marinich at 4:46 PM PST - 50 comments
Bayesian analysis shows redshirts are not most likely to die on Star Trek:TOS.Although Enterprise crew members in redshirts suffer many more casualties than crew members in other uniforms, they suffer fewer casualties than crew members in gold uniforms when the entire population size is considered. Only 10% of the entire redshirt population was lost during the three year run of Star Trek. This is less than the 13.4% of goldshirts, but more than the 5.1% of blueshirts. What is truly hazardous is not wearing a redshirt, but being a member of the security department. The red-shirted members of security were only 20.9% of the entire crew, but there is a 61.9% chance that the next casualty is in a redshirt and 64.5% chance this red-shirted victim is a member of the security department. The remaining redshirts, operations and engineering make up the largest single population, but only have an 8.6% chance of being a casualty. posted by Cash4Lead at 11:35 AM PST - 75 comments
"Hi, my name is Paul Rosolie. I'm a naturalist based out of southern Peru and today I'm headed into the jungle to show you a place that very few people have gotten to see. I'm in the Madre de Dios region of Peru, this is the far western Amazon and some of the deepest jungle on earth." posted by stbalbach at 10:59 AM PST - 10 comments
On the morning of Saturday, February 20, 1971, Wayland S. Eberhardt, a civilian teletype operator, was going about his routine duties at the National Emergency Warning Center at Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado, when he made a minor error in mounting a tape. What happened next became the Great EBS Scare of 1971. posted by pjern at 10:28 AM PST - 42 comments
The Everyday Sexism Project collects user-submitted reports from women to document their day-to-day experiences with normalized sexism, including sexual harassment and job discrimination. Entries can be submitted at the site, in an email to founder Laura Bates or to their twitter account. [more inside] posted by zarq at 7:43 AM PST - 200 comments
A pub can be the lifeblood of a neighborhood, a place of safety and comfort. But sometimes, you find yourself in a publess zone; sometimes you need one right here, right now.
Sometimes you need aninflatablepub.[more inside] posted by 23 at 7:33 AM PST - 16 comments
“Solid Wood: All About Chopping, Drying and Stacking Wood — and the Soul of Wood-Burning” This best selling book by Lars Mytting highlights a passion for firewood and inspired a TV program in Norway about cutting, stacking and burning firewood. The TV program, on the topic of firewood, consisted mostly of people in parkas chatting and chopping in the woods and then eight hours of a fire burning in a fireplace. Yet no sooner had it begun, on prime time on Friday night, than the angry responses came pouring in. “We received about 60 text messages from people complaining about the stacking in the program,” said [Mr.] Mytting .... “Fifty percent complained that the bark was facing up, and the rest complained that the bark was facing down." posted by caddis at 4:36 AM PST - 81 comments
Susan Calman describes some of the legal restrictions of "civil partnerships", why she should never be allowed to get married, and why she loves her wife. A 30 minute podcast from BBC Radio 4. posted by Stark at 12:40 AM PST - 14 comments
Dan writes about games for a living. Dan's dad does not play games. Dan plays games with his dad. Much amused frustration is had by both parties. 2011, 2012, 2013. Individual Youtube videos after the jump. [more inside] posted by codacorolla at 6:29 PM PST - 47 comments
Luck was a David Milch-created show on HBO last year. It was cancelled after one season. Some of you might have dug it. If so, you might also dig Out of Luck: "The following blog is the writer’s depiction of an imagined racetrack-based story, an ongoing saga, which includes some of the characters depicted in the ill-fated Luck series." It's written by John Perrotta who was a writer/producer/story editor on the show. posted by dobbs at 6:07 PM PST - 15 comments
The twelve tales are written. (PDF)But words are only half the story – now Neil wants your help bringing them to life. The next step is to illustrate them.[more inside] posted by Sailormom at 4:37 PM PST - 50 comments
First, drink some black coffee. Next, rub your tongue against the roof of your mouth. It should feel a little rough, like very fine sandpaper: the tiny bumps on your tongue, called papillae, are raised just enough to create friction against your palate.
If you now add cream to your coffee and try again, the sensation should be much smoother — almost velvety. A layer of fat and mucous is now coating your tongue, providing lubrication and preventing friction.
What you have just done was, until very recently, the most accurate method for evaluating the oral perception of fat — the precise degree of tongue-coating creaminess in milk, mayonnaise, or chocolate pudding.
Hello and welcome to Links to the Damn Paper, an open discussion community showcasing the best in freely-available biology research. If you’ve ever tried to have a discussion about science on the Web and been stymied and frustrated by inaccessible articles, misrepresentation of research in science journalism, or a community that seems uninterested in digging into the actual research behind a topic, then welcome: you are our people. If you’ve ever wished for a place to talk about the Science of Life where you could be sure that the actual articles were available, where compelling research was presented in a way that allowed it to speak for itself, and where you could discuss science with actual scientists and with other people who are passionate about science for its own sake, then you have found your haven.
The Framers Gallery in London is currently hosting Teh Exhibishun, an exhibition of lolcat art. Special guest is Kate Miltner, author of SRSLY PHENOMENAL:
AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE APPEAL OF LOLCATS [MA dissertation, pdf available on her website]. Admission is free, but 50% of all proceeds collected will go to Battersea Home for Dogs and Cats. The BBC is there (with video) to speak with curator Jenny Theolin, some of the artists, and Miltner. posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:40 AM PST - 15 comments
Donald Richie , American author, journalist, critic and expert on Japan, dies at 88.
Smilingly excluded here in Japan, politely stigmatised, I can from my angle attempt only objectivity, since my subjective self will not fit the space I am allotted . . . how fortunate I am to occupy this niche with its lateral view. In America I would be denied this place. I would live on the flat surface of a plain. In Japan, from where I am sitting, the light falls just right – I can see the peaks and valleys, the crags and crevasses.
Death in Singapore The body of a young US electronics engineer, Shane Todd, was found hanging in his Singapore apartment. Police said it was suicide, but the Todd family believe he was murdered. Shane had feared that a project he was working on was compromising US national security. His parents want to know if that project sent him to his grave. posted by donovan at 9:29 AM PST - 17 comments
[Teach for America's] goals derive, in theory, from laudable—if misguided—impulses. But each, in practice, has demonstrated to be deeply problematic. TFA ... underwrites, intentionally or not, the conservative assumptions of the education reform movement: that teacher’s unions serve as barriers to quality education; that testing is the best way to assess quality education; that educating poor children is best done by institutionalizing them; that meritocracy is an end-in-itself; that social class is an unimportant variable in education reform; that education policy is best made by evading politics proper; and that faith in public school teachers is misplaced.
"Pop quiz: what is the favorite social networking site of Americans under age 25? If you guessed Facebook you are way behind the eight-ball, because Tumblr now enjoys more regular visits from the youth of America." Tumblr is not what you think. "Tumblr provides its users with the oldest privacy-control strategy on the Internet: security through obscurity and multiple pseudonymity [... it] proves that the issue is less about public vs. private and more about whether you are findable and identifiable by people who actually know you in real life." posted by Rory Marinich at 8:38 AM PST - 78 comments
The main things that keep me sane are the airy beauty and peacefulness of the hospital building, messages from friends and family far away on earth, the mundane magnificence of the staff: and the knowledge that all of this is free and taken care of and I do not have to fill in a single fuckforsaken form or bust one precious braincell worrying about how I might have to find money to pay for the futile care of my dying deadbeat dad.
One hundred years ago today in 1913, an art exhibition opened in New York City that shocked the country, changed our perception of beauty and had a profound effect on artists and collectors.
The International Exhibition of Modern Art — which came to be known, simply, as the Armory Show — marked the dawn of Modernism in America. posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:46 AM PST - 15 comments
Sexual Assault In The U.S. Military is the focus of a serious contender for Best Documentary Feature at this year's Academy Awards. The Invisible War is a groundbreaking investigative doc that sheds light on the under-reported epidemic of sexual abuse against female members of the military, as well as the lack of punitive action in these crimes: of the 8 percent of sexual assault cases that are prosecuted in the military, only 2 percent result in convictions. A female soldier in a combat zone is more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire.
In several computer science courses at Johns Hopkins University, the grading curve was set by giving the highest score on the final an A, and then adjusting all lower scores accordingly. The students determined that if they collectively boycotted, then the highest score would be a zero, and so everyone would get an A. posted by Foci for Analysis at 3:49 PM PST - 162 comments
Scarfolk is a town in North West England that did not progress beyond 1979. Instead, the entire decade of the 1970s loops ad infinitum. Here in Scarfolk, pagan rituals blend seamlessly with science; hauntology is a compulsory subject at school, and everyone must be in bed by 8pm because they are perpetually running a slight fever. "Visit Scarfolk today. Our number one priority is keeping rabies at bay." Join their Learn To Swim program, and enjoy the song that won 2nd place in the 1974 Scarfolk Harvest Festival, Dormin Slowly Died With The Radio On. posted by Jimbob at 3:35 PM PST - 58 comments
The Omnivore's Hatchet Job of the Year rewards "the angriest, funniest, most trenchant book review of the past 12 months," with the winning critic taking home a golden hatchet and a year's supply of potted shrimp. 2013's winner: Camilla Long, for her devastating review of Rachel Cusk's divorce memoir, Aftermath. Among other things, she described it as a nasty, bizarre memoir written by a "brittle little dominatrix and peerless narcissist." (Via) [more inside] posted by zarq at 1:57 PM PST - 71 comments
English rocker Tony Sheridan, who took the Beatles under his wing in their early Hamburg days, using them as one of his backing bands, acting as their fashion guru (outfitting them in sleek, bad boy black leather) and introducing them to the music of Little Richard, has died at age 72. [more inside] posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:44 AM PST - 12 comments
What happens when a comet collides with a major asteroid in our Solar System's main belt sending a 5-mile wide splinter on a direct path to Earth? Factually, we might never know. Till then, there's Meteor! [more inside] posted by mazola at 12:32 AM PST - 23 comments
Gallup surveyed U.S. adults in the 50 states and the District of Columbia to determine how many self-identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender. The GLBT percentage was highest in D.C. (10%) and lowest in North Dakota (1.7%). All the states were within 2 percentage points of the nationwide average of 3.5%.
The states with proportionally larger LGBT populations generally have supportive LGBT legal climates. With the exception of South Dakota, all of the states that have LGBT populations of at least 4% have laws that prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and allow same-sex couples to marry, enter into a civil union, or register as domestic partners. Of the 10 states with the lowest percentage of LGBT adults, only Iowa has such laws. posted by Area Man at 7:14 PM PST - 53 comments
"But placing sand in island shapes is not enough. Because the islands are appearing in the blink of an eye, ecologically speaking, they are at risk of incredibly rapid erosion. Natural islands develop a healthy covering of plant life over the course of their accumulation, which serves as an anchor. New plants are not strong enough to provide the same utility, and so, created islands demand millions of transition plants, grown in nurseries, to pre-age the island. Once planted, their sturdier roots help the islands hold together long enough for a full ecosystem to boot up." Just one detail from the tour of New York City’s dredged landscapes Tim Maly, founder of the Dredge Research Collaborative, undertook to help understand the enormous scale on which dredging shapes New York and its harbors. posted by MartinWisse at 8:55 AM PST - 4 comments
'One Design' boats are boats built to a specific set of dimensions and then, often and to varying degrees of competitiveness, raced.
On the River Shannon, Ireland, they race an open dinghy called the Shannon One Design and have for about 90 years.
The boats can be built by anyone with the inclination, as long as the dimensions are adhered to and the measurers certify the boat as being correct.
In the late 70's Irish TV made a program called 'Hands' that showcased traditional crafts and their practitioners. Building a ShannonOne Design was among the topics they covered. (Those links are the first, second and third parts that make up the episode).
Interestingly, they also did an episode on building a 'Curragh' (part 2 part 3), a boat design that people have been building on the coasts of Scotland and Ireland since before anyone even thought to notice they were building boats a specific way.
Following links, there are also episodes about wheel building, chair making and weaving, among others. posted by From Bklyn at 8:52 AM PST - 7 comments
Horse-egifs: A tribute to the surreal poetry of Horse_Ebooks, Horse-egifs takes a randomly selected video and makes a gif from a randomly selected chunk of that video.and then it gets posted to tumblr. [via mefi projects] posted by The Whelk at 7:58 AM PST - 10 comments
"I used to think that the interesting issue was whether we should have a monarchy or not. But now I think that question is rather like, should we have pandas or not? Our current royal family doesn’t have the difficulties in breeding that pandas do, but pandas and royal persons alike are expensive to conserve and ill-adapted to any modern environment. But aren’t they interesting?"
"A mission scientist with NASA's Kepler Space Telescope, Natalie Batalha hunts for exoplanets — Earth-sized planets beyond our solar system that might harbor life. She speaks about unexpected connections between things like love and dark energy, science and gratitude, and how "exploring the heavens" brings the beauty of the cosmos and the exuberance of scientific discovery closer to us all". (Audio link of interview at top left corner of page, other relevant links at bottom of page) posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:44 AM PST - 10 comments
[Roy Chapman] Andrews is best remembered for the series of dramatic expeditions he led to the Gobi of Mongolia (shorter films: 1, 2) from 1922 to 1930. Andrews took a team of scientists into previously unexplored parts of the desert using some of the region’s first automobiles with extra supplies transported by camel caravan.
Andrews – for whom adventure and narrow escapes from death were a staple of exploring – is said to have served as inspiration for the Hollywood character “Indiana Jones.”
Andrews’s expeditions to the Gobi remain significant for, among other discoveries, their finds of the first nests of dinosaur eggs, new species of dinosaurs, and the fossils of early mammals that co-existed with dinosaurs. [more inside] posted by ersatz at 4:18 AM PST - 8 comments
This week, the famed singer and performer Julia Pastrana was laid to rest near her birthplace in Sinaloa, Mexico.
Julia Pastrana died in 1860. Her husband had embalmed her body and exhibited it in a touring display for many years afterward, together with the remains of their infant son. [more inside] posted by Countess Elena at 9:51 AM PST - 15 comments
Wood Central is a long lived forum for woodworkers predating even young upstart Metafilter. Having been around for so long the forums are a source of immense knowledge of all things wood and some of that has been collected into posting archives and essays on their Articles and Reviews page. So if you ever wanted to know
Robert Smalls sat at the conference table next to Frederick Douglass as they tried to convince President Abraham Lincoln that African Americans should be allowed to fight for their own freedom. He served five terms in Congress. He ran a newspaper and helped found a state Republican Party.
"In the 1950s, a DJ named Jean Shepherd hosted a late-night radio show on New York's WOR that was unlike any before or since. On these broadcasts, he delivered dense, cerebral monologues, sprinkled with pop-culture tidbits and vivid stretches of expert storytelling. 'There is no question that we are a tiny, tiny, tiny embattled minority here,' he assured his audience in a typical diatribe. 'Hardly anyone is listening to mankind in all of its silliness, all of its idiocy, all of its trivia, all of its wonder, all of its glory, all of its poor, sad, pitching us into the dark sea of oblivion.' Shepherd's approach was summed up by his catchphrase: a mock-triumphant 'Excelsior!', followed by an immediate, muttered 'you fathead ... '" (via) [more inside] posted by Rustic Etruscan at 12:53 PM PST - 24 comments
Parlaying TV ubiquity into a stable career is hard enough. The fact that Jeopardy legend Ken Jennings has done this merely by being the smartest guy in your living room seems like nothing less than a minor miracle. posted by Chrysostom at 12:45 PM PST - 26 comments
Shengguan Tu (升官圖) "Promoting the Officials" is a Chinese board game " where players assume the of an aspiring mandarin, moving through the imperial examinations and through the bureaucracy, eventually rising to the “Da Nei” or inner sanctum Grand Secretariat in the imperial household. Along the way, players pay “donations” to higher ranked players in each department." It has existed in some form since the Tang dynasty (618 - 906 CE) at least and now it's a Flash game. Programmed by Dave Lyons who also wrote a quick introduction to the game, from which the above is taken. posted by MartinWisse at 10:57 PM PST - 7 comments
CockneyEnglish, once frowned upon as an unsavory dialect in the UK, has endured over the centuries, becoming a hallmark of London's East End culture. Though the demographics of that area have changed within recent decades, the rhyming slang of old still persists in that region's streets - onATMmachines. posted by Smart Dalek at 4:03 PM PST - 8 comments
“On the one hand the government is freaking out about cyber-security, and on the other the U.S. is participating in a global market in vulnerabilities and pushing up the prices,” says Soghoian, who says he has spoken with people involved in the trade and that prices range from the thousands to the hundreds of thousands. Even civilian law-enforcement agencies pay for zero-days, Soghoian says, in order to sneak spy software onto suspects’ computers or mobile phones. posted by Chrysostom at 12:32 PM PST - 15 comments
My analysis starts with the observation that there are some striking similarities between the current political cycle (the Age of Reagan) and the previous one (the Age of Roosevelt).
I realize that probably doesn’t go down well with the Obama fans out there, so let me add immediately that it isn’t meant to be taken literally. Nixon really was a sociopath, if not a psychopath—a criminal of monstrous dimensions (See: Hanoi, 1972 Christmas bombing of). And that’s not even bringing Watergate into the discussion.
Unless Michelle Bachmann’s paranoid fantasies about Solyndra are actually true, or the drone program is much worse than we now know, Obama isn’t even close to being in Nixon’s league. He actually seems to be a pretty good guy, for an Emperor.
But in the current political cycle, Obama sits right there in Tricky Dick’s spot—after the Democratic Eisenhower (Clinton) but before the Democratic Reagan, i.e. the one who will free the Matrix and bring balance to the force.
Superman is a good guy. More than that, Superman is the best guy. Created by writer Jerry Siegel and artist Joe Shuster in 1932, he's the archetypal superhero, a man of enormous power who places himself in service to the powerless. To borrow a famous phrase from the 1940s Superman radio serial, he stands for "truth, justice and the American way". - Why Orson Scott Card isn't the right man to write Superman. [more inside] posted by Artw at 10:04 AM PST - 255 comments
It's not the season for this song but it's certainly the right day for it: Summer's the Worst, a ballad about love and idiocy that's melancholy, clever, and (ahem) really quite lovely. posted by Rory Marinich at 9:57 AM PST - 2 comments
In an article titled "So You're From Brooklyn," Brooklyn is declared a "bourgeois borough" full of "baby carriages, rubber plants, gold fish and green grocers.” The author warns that "Your average Manhattanite's conception of that great unexplored area beyond the three bridges is at once as naive as a child's idea of Alice's mythical Wonderland and as weird as a futurist artist's impression of Heaven."
Hazel McCallion, one of history's longest serving elected leaders, turns 92 years old today. McCallion is current mayor of Missisauga, Canada's 6th largest city, where she has served for 34 years, winning 12 consecutive elections. Her political clout and public persona show no sign of slowing. posted by 256 at 6:14 AM PST - 18 comments
"Malalai has seen more of Afghanistan than many of the white-bearded men who run this country. She's been travelling in the cockpit of military helicopters since she was two months old; her mother is an Afghan army pilot."
This is a beautifully illustrated long read. posted by puffl at 3:35 AM PST - 8 comments
I realized that if something had happened to Henry James' testicles, that my friends didn't know about it, because if they did, it'd just be weird that they didn't mention it - given what we were talking about. And I thought this was sort of neat because one of my friends had done his Ph.D. on James, and even he didn't know about the guy's self-castration! I instantly resolved to solve the mystery. "Look," I said, exited now, "I'm pretty sure something happened down there, so I'm going to check it out. And when I do find out - "
"You'll let us know.
"We'll look forward to it." posted by carsonb at 11:10 PM PST - 22 comments
In November 1944, as Hitler's V-2 rockets rained down on England, Donald Watson's mind was elsewhere. Together with Elsie Shrigley and 23 others, he was starting a new society of ethical vegetarians who avoided dairy and eggs as well as meat -- an unheard-of innovation. The earliest issues of the group's magazine are now available online and provide a glimpse into the humble beginnings of what became a global movement. In its pages, members discuss animal ethics, health, wartime rationing, recipes and the thorny issue of what adherents should call themselves. (Donald Watson coined "vegan" in issue 1, but some members were unimpressed and wrote in with their own suggestions including Vitan, Dairyban, Benevore, Sanivore and Beaumangeur). posted by dontjumplarry at 5:22 PM PST - 48 comments
But like anything, the original Photoshop was a product of its time. Knoll’s foundations grew to support functionality he’d never imagined; as the features piled on, more staff was added. What started as mostly a photography tool turned quickly into a graphic design powerhouse. And when a port to Windows became inevitable, things started to really get messy.
Carl von Clausewitz's On War is remembered today as a classic of Prussian thinking on war and politics in the post-Napoleonic era. Wouldn't it be better if it were a Socratic dialogue between Hare Clausewitz and his class of other woodland creatures, though? Thankfully, The Children's Illustrated Clausewitz has arrived to fill just that need. posted by Copronymus at 3:34 PM PST - 11 comments
On the one hand we have kirigami, the slightly more dangerous variation of origami that involves razor-sharp instruments (think snowflakes).
On the other hand we have architecture.
Now put your hands together... [more inside] posted by heyho at 2:50 PM PST - 12 comments
“The DON ROSA COLLECTION is a deluxe 9-volume set of books published by Egmont that tells the story of my life with comics, particularly the $crooge McDuck and Donald Duck comics for which I have become best known... As part of the special texts in the series, I wrote an autobiography of my life, at least as it pertains to comic books. As a conclusion to those texts it was always planned that I would write a sort of ‘epilogue’ to my career, the subject of which would obviously be the reasons for why I quit... At the last moment the Disney Corporation refused to allow my text to appear in a book series that was published under their license... So I agreed to allow set #3 to go forward as long as I would be allowed in volume 9 to direct interested readers to the ‘epilogue’ as it is appearing on this private website.” Don Rosa: “WHY I QUIT”[more inside] posted by koeselitz at 1:54 PM PST - 12 comments
Why, then, would we look for evidence of socialism only where a state seized by radicals of the Left inaugurates a dictatorship of the proletariat? Or, to lower the rhetorical volume and evidentiary stakes, why would we expect to find socialism only where avowed socialists or labor parties contend for state power? We should instead assume that socialism, like capitalism, is a cross-class cultural construction, to which even the bourgeoisie has already made significant contributions – just as the proletariat has long made significant contributions to the cross-class construction we know as capitalism. What follows?
Former New York Times reporter Michael Janofsky was contacted for an unusual freelance assignment: blogging as a United Arab Emirates royal. [more inside] posted by Chrysostom at 12:06 PM PST - 11 comments
"Hans explains there is a policy to keep certain routes clear. Since all streets in Dutch cities are categorised (also because of the ‘sustainable safety’ policy) it is very clear which streets are main routes that must be cleared. In the past, the cycle paths were not really thought important. But there were many complaints about it and the policies shifted slowly towards clearing the cycle paths more as well. Hans: “Especially when the city was elected Cycling City of the Netherlands in 2011, the department of public works felt it was our moral obligation to give the main cycle routes the highest priority. Now the cycle paths are cleared at the same time as the 8 main routes for motorised traffic.” -- Cycling blogger Mark Wagenbuur explains how one Dutch city, 'S-Hertogenbosch, deals with keeping the cycle paths clear during winter. posted by MartinWisse at 11:58 AM PST - 24 comments
A Renaissance in EconomicsThe American President Ronald Reagan once quipped, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’” I get the same shivers when someone introduces themselves as an economist. posted by infini at 9:25 AM PST - 39 comments
The Boredom Proneness Scale† is the best-known of the various metrics for quantifying one’s propensity to ennui. High-scorers who are ‘understretched, unmotivated and bored in the world of work in the 21st century’ may in danger of ‘boreout’ [PDF]. While boredom needn’t be perceived in an exclusively negative light (one might imagine a perfect boredom akin to the notion of dolce far niente), ‘boredom [PDF] and boredom proneness […] have been linked to a long list of negative outcomes in adults, including, depression, anxiety, hopelessness, and loneliness […], impulsiveness […], elevated rates of alcohol dependence […], negative affect […], pathological gambling […] and higher rates of psychopathology in general.’ Historians of boredom have noted the relatively recent advent [NY TIMES] of the term, coinciding with the onset of the Industrial Revolution, but our more distant ancestors were not free of the related afflictions [PDF] of horror loci, tædium vitæ,acedia, mal du siècle, etc. [more inside] posted by misteraitch at 8:02 AM PST - 40 comments
As reported in the Washington Post and NYTimes, the FTC recently reported to congress in a 370 page report (pdf link) that the consumer reporting agencies do a poor job of accurately reporting consumer's credit. Millions of people pay higher rates than they need to, mostly because correcting a credit report is so excruciatingly difficult. [more inside] posted by readery at 8:00 AM PST - 41 comments
False memories of fabricated political events [ABSTRACT]. In the largest false memory study to date, 5,269 participants were asked about their memories for three true and one of five fabricated political events. Each fabricated event was accompanied by a photographic image purportedly depicting that event. Approximately half the participants falsely remembered that the false event happened, with 27% remembering that they saw the events happen on the news. Political orientation appeared to influence the formation of false memories, with conservatives more likely to falsely remember seeing Barack Obama shaking hands with the president of Iran, and liberals more likely to remember George W. Bush vacationing with a baseball celebrity during the Hurricane Katrina disaster. A follow-up study supported the explanation that events are more easily implanted in memory when they are congruent with a person's preexisting attitudes and evaluations, in part because attitude-congruent false events promote feelings of recognition and familiarity, which in turn interfere with source attributions. [FULL TEXT PDF AVAILABLE HERE][more inside] posted by Blasdelb at 7:17 AM PST - 78 comments
In June 2010 a news story briefly appeared on the Yediot website about Prisoner X in solitary confinement in an Israeli jail. His jailers did not know who he was, did not share a word with him, no one came to visit him. No one seemed to know he was there. They didn’t even know what crime he had committed or how he came to be in the prison. His prison cell was completely isolated from other prisoners and he couldn’t communicate in any way with them. ABC News Australia has broken the News that Prisoner X was an Australian citizen suspected of Mossad links and who commited suicide two years ago in an Israeli jail. [more inside] posted by adamvasco at 6:19 AM PST - 96 comments
Speed-painter D. Westry appeared on the Anderson Show, promising to paint a picture in 90 seconds or less. With the clock ticking down, guests and hosts alike were puzzled by the work taking shape on the canvas, until. . . posted by KathrynT at 11:00 PM PST - 50 comments
Book Club. This 30-minute programme's been on Radio 4, the BBC's premier speech radio station, since 1998. Books are announced a month in advance, giving listeners a chance to read the chosen title before the discussion. James Naughtie then interviews the book's author about it in front of an audience of his (or her) readers, who also put questions of their own. My favourites from the programme's archive include Alan Bennet (Writing Home), Clive James (Unreliable Memoirs), Douglas Adams (a 1 hour special on Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy), Elmore Leonard (Rum Punch), James Ellroy (Black Dahlia), PJ O'Rourke (Holidays in Hell) and Stephen Fry (The Hippopotamus). No doubt you'll have your own. [more inside] posted by Paul Slade at 11:44 AM PST - 8 comments
In the wake of Pope Benedict's resignation yesterday, the world has become re-aquainted with a more famous papal resignation; that of Celestine V, a hermit who proved wildly incompetent as pope and never wanted the job in the first place – but was canonized nevertheless, and received special acclaim from Pope Benedict just three years ago. [more inside] posted by EmpressCallipygos at 11:34 AM PST - 44 comments
"If you've ever read a silver age comic book in your life, chances are you've seen the ad for World Wide Diamond Co., once located in windy wacky Chicago IL. And if you sent away for one of their smallish, 48-page, newsprint mail order catalogs then you absolutely uncovered a world of REAL hiddentreasure!" posted by griphus at 11:18 AM PST - 16 comments
"Cheever wasn't the only one who found inspiration at the Writers' Project [NYT]. Others included Conrad Aiken, Nelson Algren, Saul Bellow, Arna Bontemps, Malcolm Cowley, Edward Dahlberg, Ralph Ellison, Zora Neale Hurston, Claude McKay, Kenneth Patchen, Philip Rahv, Kenneth Rexroth, Harold Rosenberg, Studs Terkel, Margaret Walker, Richard Wright and Frank Yerby. These federal employees produced what would become the renowned American Guide Series, comprising volumes for each of the 48 states that then existed, as well as Alaska." posted by Iridic at 9:15 AM PST - 11 comments
Twitter is experimenting with online shopping:
"American Express card holders who connect their card numbers to their Twitter accounts can post on Twitter to trigger a purchase of select products, including discounted American Express gift cards, Kindle Fire tablets from Amazon.com Inc. and jewelry from designer Donna Karan. The program will roll out over the next few days." [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 5:03 AM PST - 65 comments
To understand what is at stake we need to make our way through the rhetorical smog. For months prior to the WCIT, the Euro-American press trumpeted warnings that this was to be an epochal clash between upholders of an open Internet and would-be government usurpers, led by authoritarian states like Russia, Iran and China. The terms of reference were set so rigidly that one European telecom company executive called it a campaign of “propaganda warfare” (2). ~ Masters of the Internet, Le Monde Diplomatique posted by infini at 3:47 AM PST - 22 comments
"The discovery advances UC Berkeley’s mission to make sense of big data and to use new technology to document and maintain endangered languages as critical resources for preserving cultures and knowledge. [...] it can also provide clues to how languages might change years from now." posted by batmonkey at 9:10 PM PST - 21 comments
What happens to comics if newspapers go away? Garry Trudeau imagines a terrifying void. Webcomic artists think Garry Trudeau is silly. But if you, too, fear the vast abyss of a world without newspaper funnies, and lack the patience to search for all the treasures of the webcomic world, what you want is a comic that never ends. Pandyland and Mezzacotta each offer an infinite supply of three-panel comics, so that you'll never have to go without a brief moment's amusement. Sure, 99% of the comics you see might be crap, but there are gemsamidstalltherubbish. posted by Rory Marinich at 3:21 PM PST - 101 comments
Pundits and the press too often treat terrorism and guerrilla tactics as something new, a departure from old-fashioned ways of war. But nothing could be further from the truth. Throughout most of our species' long and bloody slog, warfare has primarily been carried out by bands of loosely organized, ill-disciplined, and lightly armed volunteers who disdained open battle in favor of stealthy raids and ambushes: the strategies of both tribal warriors and modern guerrillas and terrorists.
"Help Us Name the Moons of Pluto!" Pluto may have lost is designation as a full-fledged-planet in 2006 (after 'dwarf planet' Eris was discovered that is larger than it), but it still gets plenty of attention by astronomers. In the last two years, the Hubble Space Telescope discovered two more moons of Pluto, which have not yet been named. So Mark Showalter of the SETI Institute is doing an online survey. [more inside] posted by oneswellfoop at 10:21 AM PST - 51 comments
Is your name linked to your life chances? The Guardian's Data Blog examines the link between first names and life outcomes in a series of diagrams.
"The Guardian Digital Agency has looked at the first names of doctors, prisoners, football players, Guardian staff and other professions and mapped how often certain names occur." posted by sundaydriver at 8:31 AM PST - 62 comments
The Shooter. It begins, "The man who shot and killed Osama bin Laden sat in a wicker chair in my backyard, wondering how he was going to feed his wife and kids or pay for their medical care." posted by chunking express at 7:38 AM PST - 211 comments
Litterplugs: "Now, I can understand how generalized holes — containers, street light bases, flower pots — become makeshift trashcans. Even if they’re obviously in no way trashcans, and likely will never be emptied or cleaned by any human being on earth, and in most cases there’s a real trashcan mere feet away, they at least share a vague similarity to the raw concept of a trashcan.
But the best litterplugs take it to a new level.
They raise not-littering littering to an art." An observation by Cabel Sasser. posted by ocherdraco at 7:36 PM PST - 51 comments
Upcoming web series Star Trek Continues (warning: transporter sound) plans to pick up "right where the original left off", completing the last two years of the 5 year mission. posted by klausman at 3:16 PM PST - 46 comments
Road safety adverts will no longer be shown on television in England because the Department for Transport has decided to "re-prioritise" its budget.
Commenting on the cutting of TV adverts, road safety Minister Stephen Hammond said: "Road deaths are at a record low but we know that one death is one too many. [more inside] posted by marienbad at 12:33 PM PST - 15 comments
Foodfight! is an computer-animated "movie" starring Charlie Sheen, Hillary Duff, Eva Longoria, Wayne Brady, and Christopher Loyd. Set in a supermarket that transformed into a city when the lights came off at the end of the day and inhabited by mascots for food products coming to life.
After a theft of company's computers in 2003, and numerous other delays, the film would not see the light of day until 2012 [more inside] posted by hellojed at 9:57 AM PST - 277 comments
This "intellectual beverage" and temperance drink (after they took the alcohol out) contains the valuable tonic and nerve stimulant properties of the Coca plant and cola (or Kola) nuts. Or it used to, until they took the cocaine out. But why did they do that? Not because it was illegal--that didn't happen until eleven years later. posted by Obscure Reference at 6:40 AM PST - 46 comments
Cleverbot.com has been touted as one of the most advanced artificial intelligences ever. The website allows users to chat with the A.I. Cleverbot. But how good is it, really? I sat down with Cleverbot and collaborated on a movie script.
What follows is a movie written by a machine. posted by FirstMateKate at 3:44 PM PST - 18 comments
Since March 21, 1994, when the first regular obituary segment was dropped into an Academy Awards show, a spot on the yearly scroll of recently deceased movie luminaries has become one of the evening’s most hotly contested honors. And as in most Oscar races it is the focus of sometimes ferocious campaigning. posted by Chrysostom at 1:39 PM PST - 16 comments
“We’re going to have to invent new economics to capture the impact of the sharing economy,” says Arun Sundararajan, a professor at the Stern School of Business at NYU who studies this phenomenon. The largest question for academics is whether this all creates new value or just replaces existing businesses. The answer is surely both. It’s classic creative destruction.
The Old Man at Burning Man."When I mentioned to friends that I was going to Burning Man with my 69-year-old father, 'Good idea' were the words out of no one's mouth." posted by zarq at 8:46 AM PST - 65 comments
Dale Askey is a librarian. He blogs. In August 2010, Dale was a tenured associate professor at Kansas State University, where librarians are granted faculty status. There, Dale blogged about the quality, and prices, of publications from Edwin Mellen Press. Edwin Mellen Press has served McMaster University (Dale's current employer) and himself with a three million dollar lawsuit, alleging libel and claiming aggravated and exemplary damages. [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 3:06 AM PST - 60 comments
The Dark Side of the Sun (Wiki) was Brad Pitt's first starring role in a movie. Made in Yugoslavia in 1988, the film was apparently lost until after the Croatian War of Indepedence. When Brad Pitt became famous the film was somehow rediscovered and released, straight to video, in 1997. The story concerns a man who has a rare skin disease that could kill him if he is exposed to light. For much of the movie, Pitt appears in full leather, covering his whole body, including his face. Here's Part 1 of 12, but if you just want to see a very young Brad Pitt, start at Part 6. posted by twoleftfeet at 7:32 PM PST - 14 comments
“Viruses have no color as they are smaller than the wavelength of light,” says Jerram, in an email. “So the artworks are created as alternative representations of viruses to the artificially colored imagery we receive through the media.” Jerram and Davidson create sketches, which they then take to the glassblowers, to see whether the intricate structures of the diseases can be replicated in glass, at approximately one million times their original size. RECENTLY posted by heyho at 1:58 PM PST - 26 comments
"In 1987, an anonymous team of computer scientists from the Kyrgyz Soviet Socialist Republic wrote a series of children's books based on the popular Choose Your Own Adventure series. The books were hastily translated into English and a small number were exported to America, but the CIA, fearing a possible Soviet mind control scheme, confiscated them all before they could be sold. Now declassified, the books have been lovingly converted to a digital hypertext format and put online for the English-speaking world to enjoy." posted by Iridic at 1:12 PM PST - 72 comments
"This is what cultured people are like. In order to be cultured and not to stand below the level of your surroundings it is not enough to have read “The Pickwick Papers” and learnt a monologue from “Faust.” …
What is needed is constant work, day and night, constant reading, study, will…. Every hour is precious for it…. Come to us, smash the vodka bottle, lie down and read…. Turgenev, if you like, whom you have not read.
You must drop your vanity, you are not a child … you will soon be thirty.
It is time!
I expect you…. We all expect you."
- Anton Chekhov on the 8 Qualities of Cultured People, in a letter to his older brother Nikolai posted by beisny at 12:04 PM PST - 26 comments
“Tusk,” which is featured prominently and often in the première of FX’s The Americans... is a work of strange savagery, overlaid with jungle sounds and a thudding, endlessly repetitive drum riff that drives everything that happens in the song.
My Eight Years with a Gun "If the government was powerless to stop this onslaught, then the gun in my pocket was a declaration that the city had broken the social contract." posted by bitmage at 4:08 PM PST - 229 comments
"Metaldudes Cats Book challenges stereotypes of masculinity and the metal culture in general. Now... I think we can all agree that cat photos and videos are a pretty integral part of the internet these days, so it feels a little pointless to describe why you might want to look at more cute cats. DUH! However: Metaldudes Cats Book combines three loves that have a global reach: Kitties, Metal, and Duuuudes." Although metal and cats are not a new combination on the internet, photographer Alexandra Crockett wants to take metal + felines to the next level. The AVClub has more. posted by Frobenius Twist at 3:03 PM PST - 23 comments
“LEGO® sets are not cheap toys. They are made to the highest standards and have the price to go along with it. However, in the past couple decades it seems that the price of LEGO sets has become outrageous. New sets can sell for up to $500 retail and old sets can sell for twice that in a secondary market. This is a children’s toy, right? There is no way LEGO sets have always been this expensive; it is just molded plastic. Let’s take a look at the history of LEGO pricing and try to figure out what is going on.” posted by zamboni at 12:25 PM PST - 106 comments
“Compliance with treatment is a sketchy thing to begin with,” said Sam Muszynski, director of the office of health care systems and financing for the American Psychiatric Association. He fears that financial fallout may force some providers to disrupt care, leaving mentally unstable patients on their own temporarily -- or longer. “All it takes is one missed appointment,” he added.
Changes instituted on January 1 to insurance claims codes have glitched the system by which mental health professionals get paid - prompting fear that many will have to stop providing care. More information on the changes to the codes. posted by jbickers at 11:34 AM PST - 8 comments
Aneta Bartos is a photographer whose most recent show, Boys, features lush, pictorial images of young men masturbating in the Carlton Arms Hotel (and is on display at the same hotel). All of her work, aside from her commercial portraits, is explicitly sexual, including male and female nudity. [more inside] posted by klangklangston at 11:04 AM PST - 31 comments
The Q&A With Jeff Goldsmith is an irregularly released podcast where Mr. Goldsmith interviews, at length (each episode runs an hour or more), working Hollywood and foreign screenwriters. The most recent episode is a panel conversation with the year's Oscar-nominated screenwriters. You can listen to the podcasts on his site or subscribe in iTunes or on Android.
Goldsmith is also the publisher of the terrific screenwriting magazine Backstory--currently only available for the iPad but coming (eventually) to the web and Android. You can download the first issue (which is wonderful, and contains full length scripts along with the interviews and stories) for free. posted by dobbs at 10:57 AM PST - 5 comments
We might not get laughed out of the room, but the question is: would we want to be stuck in it with some guy who would ask: Since we already have Aristophanes, who needs Kurtzman? Since we have Erasmus of Rotterdam, why would we want Steve Martin? With Wagner still available, who cares about the Firehouse Five? Furthermore, would we let that guy organize the party music?
What appears at first to be taking a more stringent view is in fact applying irrelevant criteria. It dismantles the idea of a comic and leaves the parts hopelessly undone.
Sick Papes on Allometric Scaling of Metabolism, Growth, and Activity in Whole Colonies of the Seed‐Harvester Ant Pogonomyrmex californicus: “Dudes have been flubberbusting long and hard about whether we should think about the bees in a hive (or people in a city, or dicks in a game of dick jenga) as a wonderful communion of separate beings or as all just the dangly bits of one MegaMan. As the disturbing old saying goes, there’s many ways to skin a cat, but what perverted shitbag wants to skin a cat a bunch of different ways? So the world was on the verge of turning its back forever on this age old question and exploding in a supernova of its own ignorance. That is until some brave souls (Dr. James Waters and colleagues) figured out the illest of ways to blow the lid off a part of this problem. But let me slow my roll a bit and fill in the rubbly background that makes it crystalline just why this pape is so sick…” [more inside] posted by schoolgirl report at 7:54 AM PST - 19 comments
NEW from VIDEO Magazine, arising out of its popular "Arcade Alley" column, it's ELECTRONIC GAMES Magazine!(page of PDF links) Brought to you by editors Frank Laney Jr. and Bill Kunkel, and filled with all the latest news on programmable home console games, computer games (with special coverage for the new ATARI 800 system), stand-alone electronic devices and arcade gaming. [more inside] posted by JHarris at 5:43 AM PST - 37 comments
The inefficiency of it all ... Here's a great infographic: slavery and cotton in the South in 1860. But if the map is interesting, the article is astonishing. It says only 2 percent of Deep South land produced cotton in 1860 -- and only 13 percent grew any crop at all. You better read that last sentence again. posted by LonnieK at 7:06 PM PST - 80 comments
A day before her 32nd birthday, Jill Brzezinski-Conley was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a double mastectomy. She's now 35, and her cancer has metastasized to terminal, stage-4. Sue Bryce won Australian Portrait Photographer of the Year in both 2011 and 2012, and last year's prize was a one-person trip to Paris. After hearing her story, Bryce took Brzezinski-Conley with her to the City of Light for a photo shoot and brought along a videographer. The resulting short film: "The Light That Shines." (Also on Vimeo.) Photos. (click the open magazine at the top of the page). The video and photos both show a topless Ms. Brzezinski-Conley, and may be nsfw. [more inside] posted by zarq at 12:28 PM PST - 25 comments
Mamá. The sphincter-tightening short film by Andres Muschietti that inspired the movie of the same name, with an introduction by producer Guillermo del Toro. posted by gottabefunky at 10:34 AM PST - 20 comments
In the early 1970's Bill Cooper headed up an expedition to snowmobile 5000 miles from Minnesota to Moscow. After not completing the trip and returning home Wild Bill turned his talents towards “The MarijuanaAir Force”, an endeavor, amongst others, placing him on America’s 10 Most Wanted list of the U.S. Marshals. They never caught him.
Using footage from the '72 expedition that has been stuck away in attics and basements filmmaker Mike Scholtz made Wild Bill's Run. The strange but true story of a snowmobiling outlaw.
And you can watch it for free tomorrow, 7pm EST, on Outside magazine's website. posted by edgeways at 10:16 AM PST - 3 comments
So, I’ve been doing my research. Because there are so many prefectures and so many famous foods, I’m going to be breaking this article up into two parts. One for North, East, and Central prefectures of Japan, and one for West and South prefectures of Japan. At the end of the second part, we’ll also include a printout that has a map with numbers on all the prefectures corresponding to a list down below it. That way you can print this out, take it with you, and go on a rompy food excursion in Japan. posted by infini at 9:24 AM PST - 17 comments
Who needs machine readable dates? As far as I can see there are two target audiences for this operation. The first is obviously social applications that have to work with dates, and where it can be useful to compare dates of two different events. An app must be able to see if two events fall on the same day and warn you if they do. However, as a target audience social applications are immediately followed by historians (or historical, chronological applications). After all, historians are (dare I say it?) historically the most prolific users of dates, until they were upstaged by social applications.[more inside] posted by smcg at 7:49 AM PST - 39 comments
"The historical and international evidence suggests that while weak patent systems may mildly increase innovation with limited side effects, strong patent systems retard innovation with many negative side effects." "innovations leading to the creation of a new industry .. is seldom, if ever, born out of patent protection and is instead the fruit of a competitive environment." — Boldrin and Levine. The Case Against Patents. J. Economic Perspectives. (huffpo) posted by jeffburdges at 7:28 AM PST - 84 comments
A contributor to the Gameological Society visits his local video game store in Nairobi to demonstrate the sort of games he found there, finding gems like "Guitar Hero: Beatles and Friends" (actually, mostly Bahasa pop music), "Robocop" (with extra rainbow), and what might just be the ne plus ultra of video game mods: Grand Theft Auto San Andreas: Kirk Douglas. posted by barnacles at 5:48 AM PST - 42 comments
The Birds of Paradise Project "It took 8 years and 18 expeditions to New Guinea, Australia, and nearby islands, but Cornell Lab scientist Ed Scholes and National Geographic photographer Tim Laman succeeded in capturing images of all 39 species in the bird-of-paradise family for the first time ever. This video gives a sense of their monumental undertaking and the spectacular footage that resulted.". See, for example, the Ballerina Bird's novel shape shifting view. posted by dhruva at 8:01 PM PST - 12 comments
We set up drinks between two groups of friends: three guys and three girls (or three guys and three guys, etc.). The first step is applying for membership. Once you're accepted, you'll get your first invite to set up a Grouper and can finalize the two friends you'll bring along with you. We handle the rest: we match you with the other group, we pick the spot and set you up with a free drink. All you need to do is show up and have a good time. posted by Terminal Verbosity at 1:19 PM PST - 152 comments
In the Fall of 2011, The Floating University assembled a video course entitled Great Big Ideas. Each of its dozen lectures is the product of a challenge given to an eminent authority and expert teacher to take "everything a non-professional needs to know about your subject in less than 60 minutes" and to bake the result into "a multi-media presentation, produced with the highest quality video and graphics." The lectures cover topics as varied as psychology, demography, physics, political philosophy, and more. During its initial offering at Harvard, Yale, and Bard during the Fall 2011 term, GBI quickly became the most popular course at all three universities. posted by shivohum at 12:51 PM PST - 27 comments
Over a thousand monks and laymen are revered in Tibetan Buddhism as the incarnations of past teachers who convey enlightenment to their followers from one lifetime to the next. Some of the most respected are known by the honorific "rinpoche." For eight centuries, rinpoches were traditionally identified by other monks and then locked inside monasteries ringed by mountains, far from worldly distractions. Their reincarnation lineages were easily tracked across successive lives. Then the Chinese Red Army invaded Tibet in 1950 and drove the religion's adherents into exile. Now, the younger rinpoches of the Tibetan diaspora are being exposed to all of the twenty-first century’s dazzling temptations. So, even as Tibetan Buddhism is gaining more followers around the world, an increasing number of rinpoches are abandoning their monastic vows. Reincarnation in Exile.[more inside] posted by zarq at 12:01 PM PST - 16 comments
"Twenty five years ago I quit a job on Wall Street to write a book about Wall Street. Since then, every year or so, UPS has delivered to me a book more or less like my own, written by some Wall Street insider and promising to blow the lid off the place, and reveal its inner workings, and so on. By now, you might think, this game should be over. The reading public would know all it needed to know about Wall Street, and the publishing industry would be forced to look to some other industry for shocking confessions from insiders. Somehow this isn't the case." posted by vidur at 11:09 AM PST - 47 comments
Michael Dell, with the help of a $2 billion dollar investment from Microsoft, is taking Dell private. Dell was once a $100 billion company, but has fallen behind HP and Lenovo in marketshare in the post-PC era. This is the largest leveraged buyout since 2007. [more inside] posted by entropicamericana at 10:28 AM PST - 70 comments
"Girls" is a bit of a hit. Although it lost out to "Modern Family" at the Emmy Awards, it continues to receive significant attention as the 2nd season gets underway. [more inside] posted by HuronBob at 10:00 AM PST - 112 comments
To the tinkly piano tune of "We are the world", a video released last weekend from Uriminzokkiri, North Korea's official website, shows a dream sequence involving various rockets, Korean unification, a sparkle-powered North Korean Space Shuttle, and the apparent missile-based destruction of Manhattan. [more inside] posted by Wordshore at 7:53 AM PST - 45 comments
More and more companies residing (typically) in Silicon Valley are getting $1 billion+ valuations. Are we in the midst of another bubble?
Link to the NYT graphic describing some of these companies.
According to the article, a bubble doesn't exist, as the previous internet bubble is still fresh in people's minds.
Many places are trying to copy this Silicon Valley phenomenon, but is it worth it / sustainable? posted by JiffyQ at 5:19 AM PST - 62 comments
A confidential Justice Department memo concludes that the U.S. government can order the killing of American citizens if they are believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or “an associated force” -- even if there is no intelligence indicating they are engaged in an active plot to attack the U.S. posted by Malor at 9:36 PM PST - 148 comments
"One thing I was wondering is if any of these paleontologists you’ve talked to have given their argument of why paleontology is important." Fossils are "just basically rocks," he said. "It's not like antiquities, where it's somebody's heritage and culture and all that."
Click that 'hood! is a simple game which tasks you to locate neighborhoods in one of six cities: Chicago, IL; Lexington, KY; Louisville, KY; Oakland, CA; San Francisco, CA; and Seattle, WA. An easy game gives you 20 neighborhoods: A hard game gives you the entire city. posted by shakespeherian at 5:34 PM PST - 43 comments
Drowned in a Stream of Prescriptions. NYTimes link.
From the article: "The story of Richard Fee, an athletic, personable college class president and aspiring medical student, highlights widespread failings in the system through which five million Americans take medication for A.D.H.D., doctors and other experts said." Trigger warning: addiction, suicide. posted by sweetkid at 5:06 PM PST - 52 comments
"Organized crime gangs have fixed or tried to fix hundreds of soccer matches around the world in recent years, including World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and two Champions League games, Europol announced Monday. The European Union's police agency said an 18-month review found 380 suspicious matches in Europe and another 300 questionable games outside the continent, mainly in Africa, Asia and South and Central America. It also found evidence that a Singapore-based crime syndicate was involved in some of the match-fixing."*[more inside] posted by ericb at 3:21 PM PST - 48 comments
Ben Goldacre has been talked about herebefore. This year, following on from his book Bad Pharma - where he described a culture of badly-done medical trials on unsuitable subjects (sometimes with horrific but, tragically, potentially preventable outcomes), where swathes of results that don't reflect well on the drug in question go unpublished and even, in some cases, hidden - he has co-founded the project AllTrials, which campaigns for all medical trials to be recorded and reported. [more inside] posted by greenish at 2:06 PM PST - 33 comments
“When I’m in clinic,” Dr. Tarini said, “and I tell parents their child has scarlet fever, I see their eyes widen. In my mind, it’s no different than a strep throat with a rash, but the specter of history colors their reaction.” Those emotional words describing Mary’s lost vision still carry weight with the parents who read and remember “By the Shores of Silver Lake” and all the books that came before and after it.
Buddhism and Marxism have been called two of the most compelling arguments we have against capitalist exploitation. The Dalai Lama would agree. Once in a discussion about his meeting with Chairman Mao he spoke of his affinity for the ideals of communism, adding with a finger to his temple, "The revolution is inside, in the determination of mind." The Tricycle essay Occupy Buddhism is very well written and perhaps interesting for those who believe another (post-capitalist) world is possible. posted by ecourbanist at 11:36 AM PST - 74 comments
Lisa Hamilton's Real Rural project uses photographs and interviews to document the lives of people living on California's farms and in its small towns. [more inside] posted by .kobayashi. at 10:57 AM PST - 32 comments
The amazing influence of unconscious cues is among the most fascinating discoveries of our time—that is, if it's true.
The studies that raise eyebrows are mostly in an area known as behavioral or goal priming, research that demonstrates how subliminal prompts can make you do all manner of crazy things. A warm mug makes you friendlier. The American flag makes you vote Republican. Fast-food logos make you impatient. A small group of skeptical psychologists—let's call them the Replicators—have been trying to reproduce some of the most popular priming effects in their own labs. What have they found? Mostly that they can't get those results. The studies don't check out. Something is wrong. posted by shivohum at 10:30 AM PST - 38 comments
Foxes hunt rodents in the snow by listening for their movements and leaping high to pounce on their prey. Interestingly, they hunt most successfully when they jump in a north-easterly direction - 73% of the time. Jumping in the opposite direction has a 60% success rate. Pouncing in other directions was successful only 18% of the time. This was consistent regardless of time of day, season of year and weather conditions. [more inside] posted by Stark at 6:27 AM PST - 65 comments
Louise Bourgeois; The Complete Prints & Books
will document every print and illustrated book created by Louise Bourgeois, ultimately comprising some 3,500 entries. Entries will be added to the site once a year, according to theme. The majority of the works in the catalogue are in MoMA’s collection; others may not have been examined by MoMA cataloguers, and their documentation was gathered from various sources.
Also, Louise Bourgeois Art 21 posted by R. Mutt at 4:21 AM PST - 3 comments
Dung beetles and the Milky Way "When you view the Milky Way, you are gazing through the plane of this disk and at the universe around and beyond—which, astronomers report, is imponderably vast and contains billions of other galaxies ... On Earth, at least, humans suppose that we alone seek out the sweep of our own galaxy. But we’re wrong. In a paper in Current Biology, Marie Dacke, and her colleagues revealed that at least one other species takes guidance from the Milky Way: the dung beetle". posted by dhruva at 6:27 PM PST - 20 comments
House of Cards is a new original "TV" series that is not destined for any TV distribution channel. Instead, it was developed by, and is only available through, Netflix. Netflix posted the entire first "season," 13 1-hour episodes, on Friday. (Is this the new thing?) Some of us, cough, watched the whole thing. [more inside] posted by grobstein at 2:57 PM PST - 106 comments
Bang With Friends : presenting a Facebook app to help with your hookup needs. Simply indicate which of your Facebook Friends you'd like to sleep with, and if any of those also indicate they'd like to sleep with you, then you both get notified. [more inside] posted by Chocolate Pickle at 12:07 PM PST - 131 comments
At a time when the Lord of the Rings didn't exist as a film or a book trilogy, Fritz Lang created the 5-hour-long film Die Nibelungen (The Nibelungs, 1924), based on the 13th-century poem Die Nibelungenlied (The Song of the Nibelungs). A short clip of
Siegfried slaying the dragon was used as a trailer for the restored edition of the film. [more inside] posted by ersatz at 5:39 AM PST - 28 comments
Educational Attainment and Underemployment "The number of college graduates is expected to grow by 19 million, while the number of jobs requiring a bachelor’s degree is expected to grow by fewer than 7 million. We are expected to create nearly three new college graduates for every new job requiring such an education. Currently, more than 20 million college graduates are underemployed—working in jobs requiring less education than they have, but that number will likely soar to nearly 30 million in the coming decade as a consequence of the number of graduates growing by 12 million more than the number of jobs." posted by bookman117 at 8:10 PM PST - 106 comments
A blanket fort is a construction commonly made using blankets, bed sheets, pillow, and sofa cushions. It is also known as a couch fort, pillow fort, or sheet fort. [more inside] posted by Room 641-A at 11:46 AM PST - 37 comments
"There are reasons why this film is obscure. It is, in the most charitable possible evaluation, a mess: Bowie has described it as "my 32 Elvis films rolled into one." And yet life on that ever-dwindling island of not-on-region-one DVD films is a harsh fate for any film and particularly for this one, which is at least as interesting as its cast suggests and a good deal more. You don't need to dig out the VHS player to watch Mick Jagger run an agency of gigolos in The Man From Elysian Fields—you shouldn't have to do so to watch Bowie play one. " David Bowie's Lost 70s-era Weimar Berlin Movie: Just a Gigalo. posted by The Whelk at 9:39 AM PST - 17 comments
"He was fiercely proud of his Jewish faith. He fiercely defended the City of New York, and he fiercely loved its people. Above all, he loved his country, the United States of America, in whose armed forces he served in World War II." - a self-written epitaph by the former 105th Mayor of New York City: Edward Irving Koch.
In rural Ireland, pub business is down due to stricter drunk driving laws. In order to increase business, some counties are considering loosening the laws - in one county, "councilors voted to let rural residents drive a bit drunker." posted by insectosaurus at 5:35 PM PST - 35 comments
Ever made yourself look monstrous by using transparent adhesive tape on your face? Photographer Wes Naman has taken this to a wonderfully creepy extreme in his Scotch Tape Series. [via] posted by quin at 12:27 PM PST - 16 comments
"As far as I’m aware, nobody that term recorded Max’s words systematically. However, in the wake of his death, David and I found ourselves returning to our notes, where we’d written down many of Max’s remarks. These we gleaned and shared with our classmates. Still, I wish we’d been more diligent, more complete. The comments recorded here represent only a small portion of Max’s contribution to the class." posted by Lorin at 11:01 AM PST - 9 comments
"From symbols and notions to literary and religious allusions, this chart contains [W.H.] Auden's view of the world (and of worlds beyond), at least as he envisioned it in the 1940s." [more inside] posted by Iridic at 10:35 AM PST - 17 comments
Jacket2 has digitzed all 10 editions of Roof magazine, an important publication in the development of language poetry.
Featured poets include (pulled from a quick glance): Robert Duncan, Michael McClure, John Ashbery, Michael Castro, Robert Creeley, Alan Ginsberg, Diane Wakoski, Peter Inman, Octavio Paz. posted by Think_Long at 9:35 AM PST - 3 comments
There are days when you wake up and think that there is no wonder left in this world, no mountains left to conquer, no oceans left to explore, no frontiers left to discover. That, of course, is exactly the day you find yourself in an apartment in Logan Square surrounded by 2,700 VHS copies of "Jerry Maguire." posted by Chrysostom at 8:36 AM PST - 90 comments
Those who may have seen articles such as this Discover Magazine article, may want to know more about the Cascadia fault and the possibility of a Fukushima type earthquake [previously: here].
Here is the best summary of the science that led to the discovery of the 1700 earthquake and the history of earlier quakes. Of particular interest is a beautiful piece of data display in Figure 9 that shows the spacing in time and extent of earthquakes over the last 10,000 years based on evidence of tsunamis produced by the quakes.
Finally, here is a great pieces on Surviving a Tsunami should the need arise. posted by BillW at 6:56 AM PST - 17 comments
Coachella Hipster Cred Calculator "Pick out the bands you like and add them up to figure out your hipster cred". (Points determined purely by how far down the daily billing list they are and how large/small type the band name is (with one exception: somebody must really hate the Red Hot Chili Peppers - not that there's anything wrong with that) posted by oneswellfoop at 12:05 AM PST - 86 comments