March 2007 Archives

March 31

"Google TiSP (BETA) is a fully functional, end-to-end system that provides in-home wireless access by connecting your commode-based TiSP wireless router to one of thousands of TiSP Access Nodes via fiber-optic cable strung through your local municipal sewage lines." The free version offers 10x the speed of a normal DSL. Press release and FAQ (with features and prices).
posted by Memo at 11:33 PM PST - 29 comments

Join Hitler and his pirate robots on a hacky journey of learning. Eight video tutorials on how to create a great video pilot (starring Jack Black, with a cameo by Andy Dick as a police car). Just be aware... true success in the entertainment business entails a lot more than just decent cinematography.
Courtesy Acceptable.tv and Channel101.com (of Yacht Rock fame.)
posted by miss lynnster at 9:17 PM PST - 14 comments

Happy birthday, Herb Alpert! The man who managed to make bullfighting look sexy (and the only solo artist to ever hit #1 on the Billboard charts for both vocal and instrumental pieces) turns 72 today. Celebrate by watching a classic video, listen to a 2001 appearance on Morning Edition, or spend some quality time with Dolores Erikson, the "Whipped Cream Lady."
posted by jbickers at 7:13 PM PST - 26 comments

The 10 Ugliest Men In Heavy Metal History. Well, Metal was never meant for the beautiful people, anyways.
posted by jonmc at 5:58 PM PST - 61 comments

Let me stand next to your fire. Forty years ago today, Jimi Hendrix set fire to his guitar live on stage for the first time when he was appearing at The Astoria London. It was the first night of a 24-date tour with The Walker Brothers, Cat Stevens and Engelbert Humperdinck.
posted by psmealey at 3:49 PM PST - 33 comments

Embrace the Suck. Intensive military activity creates an incubator for slang. By bringing together people from geographically diverse backgrounds, putting them into stressful circumstances, and teaching them a new language of jargon and acronym, the armed forces create fertile ground for new idioms - many of which return home in civvies when the conflicts are over. In the Civil War, World War I and World War II, in Korea and in Viet Nam, servicepeople created or popularized now-familiar terms like shoddy, hotshot, cooties, tailspin, fleabag, face time, joystick, SNAFU, FUBAR, flaky, gung ho, no sweat, flame-out, and many, many others. Now, the GWOT brings us a new generation of 'milspeak'. Military columnist Austin Bay has published an early collection of neologisms from Gulf War II. On NPR, Bay explains what The Suck is, how to identify a fobbit, and why Marines look down on the attitude of Semper I.
posted by Miko at 1:47 PM PST - 66 comments

One down and one to go.
posted by bobbyelliott at 11:56 AM PST - 69 comments

Who really wrote the Book of Mormon? It's always been an open question if you weren't a true believer. After enduring the casual dismissals of Joseph Smith admirers and biographers in the 20th century, the Spalding-Rigdon theory reemerges as the abductive explanation, as Spalding's "manuscript" parallels obscure or disputed sources and turns the tables against apologists.
posted by Brian B. at 11:39 AM PST - 47 comments

Pritchard Bradley: Private Investigator Enforcement Agent (Headphones Recommended)
posted by jne1813 at 10:55 AM PST - 9 comments


[NSFW] “[T]onight's orgy is fairly typical. . . . Within an hour or so, the guests—23 white couples and 3 black couples—have arrived, all of them here specifically to have sex with single black men often a decade or two their junior. There are 12 such men in the house tonight. They call themselves Mandingos. And this is a Mandingo party.
posted by jason's_planet at 7:22 AM PST - 250 comments

Youtube user davebones goes to London demos, protests and gatherings. His videos demonstrate the complexity of issues, calling into question the credibility of television news which tends to portray the same events in black and white terms. While his blog sets a clear agenda, his commentary-free videos are accessible to people regardless of their viewpoint.
posted by nthdegx at 6:12 AM PST - 2 comments

The first Gitmo trial has ended, but not before the defendant was stripped of two of his attorneys. Detainee #002 entered a guilty plea and will serve 9 months in an Australian prison. In return, he signed a statement stipulating that he had never been tortured or mistreated by the Americans -- despite previously reporting being beaten and deprived of sleep during his more than five years at the prison. The agreement bars him from suing the U.S. government for alleged abuse, forfeits any right to appeal, and imposes a gag order that prevents him speaking with news media for a year.
posted by sweet mister at 5:59 AM PST - 90 comments

Deepa Mehta’s Water (Fire and Earth), and Mira Nair’s The Namesake (Monsoon Wedding). Two Indian born Women directors whose latest movies are out right now (maybe even at a theater near you): check it out!
posted by hadjiboy at 5:56 AM PST - 8 comments

Ian MacKaye seems like he wants to put his foot in the ass of those that would do away with all-ages shows in his hometown district of columbia.
posted by Hat Maui at 5:54 AM PST - 18 comments

When Sports Fans Go Mad. Just in time for your NCAA Final Four weekend: a celebration of sports fans' best and worst pranks, taunts, and hijinks. This ain't no Brady Bunch episode. Some require the skills of a tattoo artist. Some are confusing. Some are about public humiliation. This one, however, really takes the cake.
posted by papoon at 5:48 AM PST - 14 comments

Burn Hollywood Burn. Some striking photos (from the BBC) of the conflagration that came a little too close for comfort to the iconic hillside sign. Some more details here.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:40 AM PST - 19 comments

Daniel Martin Diaz creates darkly beautiful artworks.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 12:12 AM PST - 8 comments

March 30

Stockman agreed that supply-side theory was, in Greider's words, "only new language and argument to conceal a hoary old Republican doctrine: give the tax cuts to the top brackets, the wealthiest individuals and largest enterprises, and let the good effects 'trickle down' through the economy to reach everyone else." Said Stockman: "It's kind of hard to sell 'trickle down,' so the supply-side formula was the only way to get a tax policy that was really 'trickle down' .. . Kemp-Roth [the supply-side tax bill] was always a Trojan horse to bring down the top rate."
Reagon's Budget Director, David Stockman "was indicted for defrauding investors and banks of $1.6 billion while chairman of Collins & Aikman Corp., an auto-parts maker that collapsed days after he quit." via
posted by afu at 10:37 PM PST - 14 comments



Income inequality continues to rise. Or maybe not.

Professors Emmanuel Saez and Thomas Piketty and the Cato Institute's Alan Reynolds debate on how to measure[PDF] income inequality. Despite the ongoing debate, President Bush has decided, "The fact is that income inequality is real; it's been rising for more than 25 years."
posted by peeedro at 7:34 PM PST - 81 comments

Romaine Brooks (1874-1970), American expatriate artist known for her haunting portraiture and striking palette, suffered a childhood so dark that she entitled her (unpublished) memoir "No Pleasant Memories." She went on to become an important figure in early twentieth century art and earned the Legion d'honneur in 1920 for her contributions to France in World World I. A pivotal figure in the Paris lesbian salons, Brooks was the model for characters in novels by Radclyffe Hall, Compton Mackenzie and Djuna Barnes. Although said to be "fully herself only when alone," she had a fifty year relationship with Natalie Clifford Barney. Her art has enjoyed a reappreciation in recent years and her work has been featured in exhibitions at the National Museum of Women in the Arts and the Berkeley Art Museum. Her life and work have been the subject of several books and have a startling contemporary resonance.
posted by Morrigan at 7:31 PM PST - 10 comments


0100100001100101011011000110110001101111 , %68%65%6c%6c%6f - can you read this? Wanted ads seek out those made out of the right stuff by speaking their language.
posted by dabitch at 5:13 PM PST - 23 comments

The Sopranos in 7 minutes and 36 seconds.
posted by miss lynnster at 4:59 PM PST - 73 comments

Voices of the Fallen: the war in the words of the dead-- In letters and journals and e-mails, the war dead live on, their words—urgent, honest, unself-conscious—testament to the realities of combat. What do they have to say to us? ... The result is a window on Iraq we have not had before: the bravery, the fear and the chaos of war, and the loves and hates and dreams and nightmares of the warriors. Things are incredibly busy, then they are not. The Iraqis are welcoming, then they are not. The war is going well, then it is not. The mission makes sense, then it does not. ... (video, audio, email, and text)
posted by amberglow at 4:04 PM PST - 14 comments

Catchy bitter ukulele break-up song by Duncan Pflaster. Video with song. Simple and excellent. Found via Cat and Girl.
posted by LobsterMitten at 3:54 PM PST - 27 comments

Don't try this at home. Watch in awe, bedazzlement, and concern as a lone Australian (with no professional training) builds tesla coils, lasers, railguns and exploding wires -- in his own garage. [Previous mad science on MeFi]
posted by Spike at 3:28 PM PST - 17 comments

The Rude Awakening of Optimus Prime - in the same vein as the old GI Joe public service announcement parodies, but for the Transformers. [youtube]
posted by CG at 3:13 PM PST - 21 comments

Kiki de Montparnasse aka Alice Ernestine Prin was a French country girl down on her luck in early 20th century Paris. She would however become a great muse of the avant-garde art scene of the Années Folles, posing for and befriending the likes of Chaim Soutine, Moise Kisling, Amedeo Modigliani, Utrillo, Foujita, Calder, Per Krogh, Pascin, and, most famously, Man Ray, with whom he entertained a steady (if not particularly monogamous) relationship before Lee Miller. During their tumultuous eight-year romance, Kiki was the model for several of his most famous works (with some Surrealist art films thrown in for good measure). She also competed with Jean Cocteau for the affections of sailors in Southern France, was a good friend of Tristan Tzara and received letters of support of Aragon and Desnos when she was jailed for public disorder. A life of excess that ultimately led to her early death in destitution in 1953 also provided stuff for several biographies (the latest one, appropriately enough, a graphic novel), as well as a Hemingway-prefaced autobiography which was banned for obscenity in the US until the '70s, and the odd art exhibition...
posted by Skeptic at 2:19 PM PST - 14 comments

Kaskaskia: The western Illinois town stuck in eastern Missouri. First state capital, bustling economic center and a leading town in the state. That is, until the flood of 1881 cut a new river channel, destroying most of the town and leaving the remnants on the Missouri side of the Mississippi. Whether or not the disaster was due to a murdered lover's curse, the (remaining) residents petitioned that the state line be kept along the older riverbed. The town's population, once about 7000, now consists of a meager nine. [wiki]
posted by luftmensch at 1:59 PM PST - 11 comments

I Saw You: Missed Connections Comics - a flickr project in which artists illustrate posts from Craigslist's Missed Connections. Possibly NSFW. (via)
posted by Ufez Jones at 1:43 PM PST - 18 comments

Ultimate Hippie Commute Unit The Xtracycle has been around since the mid-90's. The concept is meant to eliminate the need for panniers , handlebar packs, and traditional trailers, and is currently being sold by a company by the same name. treehugger loves it, this guy built one out of spare parts, and the bicycle company Surly wants to build some themselves. Go ahead, ditch your car!
posted by andythebean at 12:03 PM PST - 48 comments

Evelyn: The Cutest Evil Dead Girl A little Burton, a little Seuss, and pretty darn enjoyable. If you don't like youTube, you should probably stay away.
posted by boo_radley at 11:48 AM PST - 23 comments


Nearly 500 passengers, including eight with broken bones, disembarked from the Grand Voyager cruise ship in Sardinia ... a day after it was battered by a storm in the Mediterranean Sea.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 11:25 AM PST - 32 comments

“When a few of the space pioneers sat down to sketch out how a practical space camera should look one of them had suddenly exclaimed: ‘That's starting to look like my Hasselblad’." NASA originally didn’t think much of space photography until Walter Schirra brought his Hasselblad 500C along on his Sigma 7 Mercury flight. Impressed by the results, NASA responded by commissioning the Hasselblad Data Camera, a stripped-down HasselBlad 500EL that accompanied all Apollo missions to the moon. In the hands of moonwalking astronauts, the Data Camera’s custom medium format film and Zeiss Biogon 5.6/60mm lens captured images of remarkable clarity, color, and sometimes composition. What's your favorite? [warning: frameset - try the "Full Hasselblad Magazines" link].
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 10:37 AM PST - 32 comments

David Lynch on product placement. Full interview here.
posted by geoff. at 9:24 AM PST - 90 comments

Modern Mummification. For yourself or your pets. The Summum organization, which incorporates a variety of religious and spiritual philosophies into its belief system, introduced modern mummification in 1975 as a means to "guide one's essence to a greater destination following the death of the body." They even have their own pyramid, in Utah of all places. There are several webpages for the kiddies, even very young ones. One presentation for kids explains that mummification is like "a caterpillar turning into a butterfly." Some people would like to expose the whole thing as a batshitinsane, money-making cult.
posted by amyms at 9:13 AM PST - 20 comments

Stripe Generator 2.0 - The Ultimate Tool for Web 2.0 Designers. (via)
posted by blue_beetle at 7:49 AM PST - 52 comments

That's pretty underground. (video)
posted by empath at 7:35 AM PST - 27 comments

"People who don't look like us see us for the first time as we should be seen, as equals." When Nichelle Nichols (Lt. Uhura) wanted to leave Star Trek after the first season, she got a little nudge from a big fan.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:22 AM PST - 47 comments

Horton's Historical Articles. "Gerald (Jerry) Horton has always been interested in American History, particularly the era from 1750 to 1820. Upon his retirement in 2000, he found more time for reading and research. It was through this research Jerry became intrigued with the Mohawk Valley during the Revolutionary War." It's a narrow focus, but if you're interested in the American Revolution the articles on this site provide incredibly detailed timelines, with impartial attention to all sides. What Happened to 7,000 People?, for example, explains just how the population of the Mohawk Valley dropped from 10,000 to 3,000 people in a few years in a "civil war that pitted neighbor against neighbor."
posted by languagehat at 6:46 AM PST - 12 comments

Maryland joins the ranks of states attempting to thwart the electoral college. Maryland's General Assembly approved a bill [PDF] to ignore the U.S. Electoral College [official website] in presidential elections, instead awarding the state's 10 electoral votes to the winner of the national popular vote. [via | previously on MeFi | more inside]
posted by terrapin at 6:25 AM PST - 71 comments

Blue Heaven: a tribute to Dodgertown. [ESPN link via]. Dodgertown in Vero Beach, FL became the spring training headquarters for the Dodgers and their many minor league teams in 1948. The site, which prepares the Dodger major and minor league clubs for the season, is being abandoned by the Dodgers for presumably less green pastures in Arizona. Voiceover narration is a bit maudlin, but the photographs are excellent.
posted by Tommy Gnosis at 5:37 AM PST - 5 comments

US and Iraq: Post-Pottery Barn Rules. "The issue here is not which candidate said what, but how the campaign is revealing the underlying public mood -- the view people have of the Iraq saga and their country’s international responsibility more generally."
posted by ZenMasterThis at 5:13 AM PST - 33 comments

The universe [flash]. I know, it's on a corporate site, and you have to sit through some pretentious Japanglish while it loads, but being able to use your mousewheel to scroll from femtometers up to the 100 billion lightyear scale is dazzling. I love cosmic zooms. Remember to pray that there's intelligent life in space, because there's bugger-all down here on Earth, except for folks like Metafilter's own kokogiak, who shows us everything in the solar system bigger than 200 miles in diameter.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:02 AM PST - 29 comments

Google Maps has restored New Orleans to pre-Katrina The views Google Maps is now providing show the city as it was prior to the storm. It's not clear why.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:26 AM PST - 67 comments


Consciousness is a mystery, and Paul Broks thinks Nicholas Humphrey (not to mention jazz guitarist Pat Martino) may have some answers.
posted by cgc373 at 1:35 AM PST - 25 comments

Millions of Hundred Dollar Ideas is one step closer to millions. The Powered by Gasoline sticker is at least a hundred dollar idea.
posted by braintoast at 12:33 AM PST - 17 comments

March 29

The Angora rabbit project was an SS-administered program to breed rabbits for their soft, warm fur, one use of which was to line the jackets of Luftwaffe pilots. The rabbits were raised in luxury not far from the maltreated prisoners in 31 Nazi concentration camps in Germany, including Auschwitz, Buchenwald, and Dachau. Here is a photograph of the hutches taken by Lee Miller.
posted by tellurian at 11:31 PM PST - 31 comments

Explore panoramic VR scenes and events assembled by UK based Peter McReady (requires QuickTime).
posted by Burhanistan at 11:19 PM PST - 4 comments

In 1977 Chris Haynes, a set decorator for The Six Million Dollar Man was setting up a scene to be filmed on location in the spookhouse ride of a Long Beach, CA amusement park called The Pike. While moving the various interior props around, Haynes discovered that the paper mache "mummy" hanging in the corner of the ride was in fact a homicide victim, a fact that had gone unnoticed by years of amusement park visitors. The story of how Elmer McCurdy's body was shot to death in 1911, only to be re-discovered & buried over six decades later, makes for an interesting read.
posted by jonson at 10:41 PM PST - 26 comments

Houston man kills, then cooks ex-girlfriend on his patio barbecue. Neighbors called authorities when they realized Timothy Wayne Shepard had been acting strange and had spent 48 hours straight barbecuing on two separate grills. Also starring one of Houston's most colorful characters, Quanell X.
posted by Brittanie at 9:45 PM PST - 53 comments

Muckraking just ain't what it used to be. The term was first coined by T. Roosevelt in 1906. The practice has gained and lost favor over the ensuing decades. Corporations have been fighting back, suing investigative reporters (or their "producers") and winning damages. Now "Prime time exposes" are mostly about citizen on citizen crime and entrapping catching pedophiles on the prowl. This only comes to mind because I'm currently reading Theodore Rex and following the ebb and flow of his fight with combinations and trusts, and because a local reporter was arrested while 'investigating security' at area maternity wards, presumably for her signature segment of investigative journalism, "Does It Work?"
posted by lysdexic at 8:20 PM PST - 13 comments

"Guantanamo Unclassified." Adel Hamad, a 48-year-old Sudanese elementary-school teacher, has been held at Guantanamo for five years without charge or evidence of a crime. His lawyers have been unable to convince a federal court to review his case, so they started started Project Hamad and posted a short movie about him online. This is an example of how human rights activists can use YouTube to bring their cases to the public.
posted by homunculus at 7:26 PM PST - 40 comments

What makes a great photo ? - fascinating discussion from the conscientious fine art photography blog - Digg doesn't.
posted by sgt.serenity at 6:30 PM PST - 25 comments

“The thing about the Kraut and me is that we have been in love since 1934, when we first met on the Île de France, but we’ve never been to bed. Amazing but true. Victims of unsynchronized passion.” Author Ernest Hemingway and actress Marlene Dietrich met while traveling across the Atlantic. Their friendship lasted until the Nobel Prize-winning author's death in 1961. In 2003, the JFK library received a donation from Marlene Dietrich's daughter of 30 letters, cards, and other documents that had been written to her mother by the author. Hemingway's estate had already donated 31 letters from Dietrich. These letters have now been unsealed and are set to go on view.
posted by miss lynnster at 4:45 PM PST - 24 comments

Super Amigos is a new documentary about five masked wrestlers from Mexico City who fight for social justice. Featuring Fray Tormenta, the luchador/priest who was the inspiration for Nacho Libre; indefatigable community organizer Super Barrio; environmental activist Ecologista Universal; homophobia smasher Super Gay; and the matador's arch-nemesis, Super Animal. And they aren't the only ones--El Hijo de Santo is fighting for the sea turtles.
posted by hydrophonic at 4:37 PM PST - 14 comments


Hometown Baghdad Web documentary series about the life of 20 somethings living in Baghdad - an interesting addition to the list of more famous web threads on life in Baghdad.
posted by specialk420 at 3:19 PM PST - 4 comments



The Karuna Group and the LTTE Continue Abducting and Recruiting Children. "When government troops at a military base look across the street at children standing guard at a Karuna office and do nothing, it’s hard to believe the government is taking any meaningful steps to end this abuse."
posted by chunking express at 11:13 AM PST - 7 comments

Council of Elrond You have stumbled upon one of the largest resource sites on the web offering a variety of unique features based on the creative works of J.R.R. Tolkien.
posted by konolia at 11:12 AM PST - 11 comments

IPR: Irrational Public Radio "We love NPR, PRI, & MPR. We are fans of All Things Considered, Morning Edition, Car Talk, This American Life, Fresh Air, and Prarie Home Companion. We like the commentaries, the features, the independent member station programs. We love them all dearly. But we also think they're begging to be made fun of. So here we are."
posted by jdroth at 11:06 AM PST - 31 comments


Comedy duo, Ramenz (ラーメンズ), aka Kobayashi Kentaro and Katagiri Jin, also known as the Japanese versions of Mac and PC, have recently done a number of shorts collectively called "The Japanese Tradition." Apparently, these tongue-in-cheek pseudo-instructional vids about famous aspects of Japanese culture (Tea, Chopsticks, Sushi, Origami, Apology, Onigiri, and Relationships) have been fooling a lot of non-natives into thinking they are actual guides. (YouTube, each approx 4-6 min).
posted by ikahime at 9:30 AM PST - 35 comments

INTERVOICE (International Network for Training, Education and Research into Hearing Voices) "offers information, publications, research, and good practice on hearing voices and other key issues." Voice hearing is surprisingly common, even normal. Many people find it a pleasurable and positive experience. Find everything from stencil graffiti to a recent New York Times magazine article on the work of the Hearing Voices Movement. (w i k i s)
posted by srs at 8:33 AM PST - 20 comments

"A year ago my approval rating was in the 30s, my nominee for the Supreme Court had just withdrawn, and my vice-president had shot someone. Ah, those were the good ol' days." Attendees at the Radio and Television Correspondents' Association dinner had some special entertainment, courtesy the President and MC Rove (YouTube, 4 minutes).
posted by textilephile at 8:13 AM PST - 136 comments


Long Wharf in Boston and European route E5 are now stops on convenient routes for anyone looking to save a little money on airfare. Whether you're heading from Newfoundland to England or Moscow to Alaska, Google Maps recommends these places as (literal) jumping-off points. Just remember to pack your goggles.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 7:51 AM PST - 13 comments

We lived a secret life, imagining a world where strange bands would give Canada the bold, expressive sound that it deserved. On the eve of the Rheostatics' final concert in Toronto, Dave Bidini pens a great essay, about where the band came from and how it all went so wrong.
posted by Flashman at 7:37 AM PST - 30 comments

Charles Peterson Photography [Flash site]. You might recognize Charles's work from the grunge era. His photos of Mudhoney, Soundgarden, Nirvana and were an essential visual accompaniment to the noisy, grinding soundtrack of that era. Charles has moved well past the energetic black and white photos of that earlier period [previously] onto something much different.
posted by psmealey at 5:08 AM PST - 13 comments

Each week, David Warsh publishes a new essay about the principals of economics. Previous topics have included rock 'n' roll economics, print journalism, and game theory. He sets his task and carries it out, and he's been at it for more than five years now.
posted by cgc373 at 1:15 AM PST - 9 comments

March 28

The Land That No One Owns is a series of photographs taken in Anarctica by photographer Roberta Holden. [via Projekt30]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:56 PM PST - 26 comments

"We were tickling the dragon's tail all the way." The true story of the nuclear ramjet missile and the hypersonic nightmare that nearly was.
posted by Spike at 8:18 PM PST - 48 comments

Anyone remember the short-lived FPS game JFK:Reloaded? It caused quite a stir when it was released a little over two years ago. Since then, the game's development company discontinued the game and JFK:Reloaded is now considered abandonware. The full version can be downloaded here and a site dedicated to the game is located here.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 7:27 PM PST - 26 comments

Stupid Management Tricks at Circuit City. Is your retail electronics company losing money? Want to cut costs? Then how about firing some of your people? I know! How about singling out those store workers who are making too much -- 3,400 of them, and get them to reapply for the same job at a lower wage?
posted by storybored at 6:57 PM PST - 66 comments

Peter Falk is a multi-talented actor and very likeable guy. He's appeared in many famous films, but around the world he's mostly recognized as TV's Lieutenant Columbo. The guest stars on Columbo were often surprising, and his unconventional but brilliant crimesolving style was so addicting to watch that even his wife got into the action at one point. Columbo is still beloved in many languages and countries, and to this day there are still people hiring themselves out as Columbo lookalikes around the world (although some are clearly better than others). But despite an approved final script & an agreeable Peter Falk, no studio will ever greenlight another Columbo movie. Why? Nobody wants to finance a movie with an 80 year-old lead. Apparently they think there's no way the character can still work, that Peter Falk is too old and he can't possibly have the edge or energy to pull off Columbo now. Obviously, they're sadly wrong.
posted by miss lynnster at 3:57 PM PST - 72 comments

The significance of the dinosaurs' death has been greatly exaggerated. This article in Nature discusses how mammalian evolution accelerated independent from the death of dinosaurs. The theory was derived from a "supertree" [pdf ~ 1mb] of mammals and how common ancestors have branched out. Coolest info-graphic ever.
posted by phyrewerx at 3:27 PM PST - 33 comments

An ancient theatre filters out low-frequency background noise. The ancient Greek theatre of the Asklepieion of Epidaurus, built mostly during the 4th century B.C. and now a World Heritage Site, is renowned for its extraordinary acoustics. Researchers have figured out that the arrangement of the stepped rows of seats are perfectly shaped to act as an acoustic filter, suppressing low-frequency background noise while passing on the high frequencies of performers' voices. [Via MoFi.]
posted by homunculus at 3:24 PM PST - 16 comments

"I do not recall" --meet Lurita Doan, Administrator of the GSA (Our mission is to help other agencies better serve the public by meeting – at best value – their needs for products and services, and to simplify citizen access to government information and services.), and hear about the powerpoint presentation from Rove's office all about electing Republicans in 08 and how her agency should help. Her office supplied it to Congress--but it was just a (GOP) "team-building exercise" and "brown-bag lunch". (YouTube) Read up on the Hatch Act too.
posted by amberglow at 3:23 PM PST - 54 comments

Single largest taxpayer in... This comment highlighted that: The club is the largest single taxpayer in Hong Kong. It paid HK$12.4bn in 2005-06 - about 8.6% of all taxes collected by the government - on turnover of HK$98.9bn. In Virginia and lots of other places its a power company. In the Chinese province of Yiwu its a market specializing in counterfeit goods. Citigroup in South Dakota. Pemex in Mexico. A cell phone company in Afghanistan. A gold mining company in Indonesia... and Guatemala. MIT in Cambridge. And the US? Some say its the government itself. This 1999 posting inconclusively points the smoking gun at... ... and in your piece of the world?
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 3:23 PM PST - 7 comments

Klaatu barada...Jikto? First there was Nikto. Then along came Wikto. Last Saturday at Shmoocon Billy Hoffman introduced the world to Jitko, a client-side vulnerability scanner that exploits your browser & turns your PC into a platform for finding holes in computers across the Internet (or behind your firewall). Reactions were mixed. Does Jikto go too far?
posted by scalefree at 1:40 PM PST - 11 comments

The Digital Freedom Campaign believes that new technologies are essential to the creativity and innovation, and that digital technology enables anyone and everyone to be an artist and an innovator. The DFC is dedicated to defending the rights of artists, innovators, creators and consumers to use lawful technology free of unreasonable government restrictions and without fear of costly lawsuits.
posted by terrapin at 10:57 AM PST - 10 comments

Are you a gamer-widow? Here is your lonely corner of the internet, with forums and resources to help you find help. Inspired by AskMe.
posted by hermitosis at 10:05 AM PST - 86 comments

The dark side of Phobos, soundtrack tunes of the seminal first person shooter Doom from 1993 as an album remade by fans. The project originated at Overclocked Remix, a site dedicated to album endeavors of this sort. Of course there are others doing this as well, the freeware Jump'n'Run Doukotsu Monogatari (Cave Story) for example got this treatment. Not as albums, but SID tunes have been remixed a lot (e.g. here, here) and by Machinae Supremacy. Would you like a radio station with this music to tune into? You've got it.
posted by Glow Bucket at 9:56 AM PST - 16 comments

The excellent Chinablog EastSouthWestNorth has a series of photos entitled "Humanizing China." The photos are grouped in three categories: Survival, Relationships & Desires and all three sections are highly worth checking out. Via.
posted by jonson at 9:34 AM PST - 18 comments

How to control your look of openness by Microsoft. An inside look at how Microsoft spun wired's article covering Microsoft's video site Channel 9. It's an interesting peek at how PR works.
posted by srboisvert at 7:40 AM PST - 37 comments

My favorite entree is the salmon sandwich on foccacia bread. Water is served with a slice of cucumber which is very refreshing. Which profession dines out the most? Whose judgements can be counted on for honesty and straightforwardness? The truckers'.
posted by ardgedee at 7:01 AM PST - 60 comments

The Virtual Absinthe Museum What is there in absinthe that makes it a separate cult? ... Even in ruin and in degradation it remains a thing apart - Aleister Crowley. The Virtual Absinthe Museum has the whole fabled history plus literature, art and antiques. The accoutrements: spoons, glasses, brouilleurs and zoomorphic pichets. Classic art-nouveau posters, postcards showing Les Perils of France, French poetry, English fiction, and American pulp magazines.
posted by bobobox at 5:08 AM PST - 40 comments

Before RSS and personalized aggregators such as Personalized Google and NetVibes, there was CRAYON, a service that allowed you to "CReAte Your Own Newspaper" by providing a page with links to chosen sources. [mi]
posted by divabat at 3:28 AM PST - 11 comments

Twittervision is a browser app using Google Maps to show Twitter comments as they happen in (more or less) real time.
posted by zardoz at 12:06 AM PST - 54 comments

March 27


The Problem of the Rupee. Starting off as a silver-based unit of currency by the 15th century ruler, Sher Shah Suri, the Rupee (wiki) has had a long and chequered history encompassing most of Asian and East-African colonial history. Issued by the British, the French, the Dutch, the Japanese, the Portuguese, the Germans and even the Danish, the rupee as a brand-name existed far beyond India, Pakistan, Nepal, Maldives, Sri Lanka Seychelles or the Mauritius. (more inside)
posted by the cydonian at 11:47 PM PST - 15 comments



Meth Candy! The media are reporting that meth is being mixed with candy to "make it more appealing to younger users". But drug candy is not new, although it's more likely accidentally given to kids, or maybe it's mostly speculation , hysteria and urban legends? Of course, there's always candy flipping, or chocolate pills. Just remember that chocolate is not an antidepressant.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 9:22 PM PST - 70 comments

Interactive Atlas of Indigenous Australia. (Java) "Choose from a range of maps covering historical, social, cultural, political and environmental themes."
posted by dhruva at 9:16 PM PST - 4 comments

Have you ever gotten stuck in a never-ending game of Monopoly? Turns out the game wouldn't take so long if we didn't play with so many made-up rules. There are many different variations of house rules. Some people even make up their own extreme game. The official Monopoly rules are posted at Monopoly Collector, which also has game history and facts, as do the Monopoly pages at Hasbro. If you're into statistics, Durango Bill has an excellent article on Monopoly probabilities. Also related, old-style Monopoly card illustrations. And just for fun, check out "Monopoly Cards We'd Like To See" at Dribble Glass. Or, make your own Chance and Community Chest cards at Sign Generator.
posted by amyms at 8:47 PM PST - 46 comments

Kermit the Frog covers Johnny Cash's cover of NIN's "Hurt."(NSFW)
posted by inconsequentialist at 7:14 PM PST - 63 comments

I'M THE HIGH PLAINS HEAVY METAL IRON MASTER, BOY!
posted by jason's_planet at 5:03 PM PST - 15 comments

Nearby residents didn't seem too upset. No one claimed it was the work of aliens or a secret cult. 250 animal carcases dumped. Included coyotes, dogs, cats cows, the usual stuff. "I'm a little concerned about it,""Stuff like that happens," she shrugged. But the folks in the forums think otherwise and have opinions as to what should happen to the deed doers and the cause of their actions.
posted by mss at 4:15 PM PST - 24 comments

Three Strikes is a TV pilot from the writers of Frasier, Larry Sanders and King of the Hill and executive produced by Jon Stewart for Comedy Central. It was turned down by the network but like Nobody's Watching the makers have turned to YouTube to revive its chances [Parts 1, 2, 3]. [via TVtattle]
posted by meech at 3:24 PM PST - 24 comments

The Lorax by Dr. Seuss. [25 min Google Video.]
posted by homunculus at 3:18 PM PST - 37 comments

How To Get Rid of Stuff This site? Just what it says.
posted by konolia at 3:12 PM PST - 14 comments

The Worst Films of "The Modern Era?" There are dozens of places to start - do you go by cost of production to theater revenue? Here's a list of criterias to make it the worst of the worst. Or perhaps by continuity errors? Blatant ignoring of the laws of immutable physics? This Christian Group has their criterias ... (American Psycho-ZERO). IMDB's "people" votes? man, there's lot of hate for "Crossover." It didn't get any noms at the "Razzies." And if your memory fails, check out the previous "losers." Is Everyone a Critic? Or the best film critic - here's Ebert's list (though I SERIOUSLY disagree on TOMMY BOY!). Many others weigh in: Digital Dreams; Maxim, Rotten Tomatoes, Stinkers (in alphabetical order); Metacritic and Leonard Maltin for your PDA/mobile (you'll have to do a sort on BOMB). And of course, (NSFW) the worst porn titles. Er, Enjoy!
posted by jbelkin at 2:42 PM PST - 75 comments

Graffiti murals seen in the Ukraine.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:19 PM PST - 11 comments

"Thank God I Was Raped!" Thank God for creepily masochistic self-help concepts! Thank God for network marketing publishing stunts that prey on the deranged! Thank God I was scammed out of real money by an advocate of rape therapy! But most of all, thank God there's an affiliate program!
posted by MaxVonCretin at 1:17 PM PST - 77 comments

Riddle: What has an eye on the bottom, and a hexagon on the top? [ answer inside ]
posted by (bb|[^b]{2}) at 12:41 PM PST - 26 comments

Gwen Shamblin's faith-based weight loss program, The Weigh Down Workshop, has been so successful that in 1999 she spun off her own Evangelical church, now found in over 100 cities worldwide. Her weight loss methods are not without controversy, and her church has recently been in the news.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 12:33 PM PST - 24 comments

BloggingheadsTV has been discussed here before and it’s a bit wonkish on policy issues. Last night’s Althouse outburst was a bit different. About four minutes in...
posted by mania at 11:29 AM PST - 55 comments

Experiemental Thumb Pianos flickr photoset
posted by Dave Faris at 11:00 AM PST - 19 comments

Poison Dart Machine Hidden at Hong Kong Race Track No good explanation for why and how someone dug up the turf at a Hong Kong racetrack and installed a machine capable of blowing poison darts at the horses. The Triads? (First link NYT)
posted by RandlePatrickMcMurphy at 10:47 AM PST - 26 comments


"It is very rare I am lost for words but I saw the statue last week and it is awesome - a tremendous tribute to a great man. [Southampton] Fans have waited a long time for this and it is going to be fantastic. I really believe it will be the best football statue anywhere both in size and the amount of detail" -- Ted Bates Trust chairman Dave Ford

Then again, maybe not.
posted by crumbly at 9:15 AM PST - 38 comments

I talk to my haircut. The Rev. Dr. Fred Lane was a dada jazzbo as part of the Raudelunas scene in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in the 70s and 80s. His real name is T. R. Reed, and he's a creator of wonderful whirligigs. There's also a documentary in the works (careful of your eyes on that page).
posted by sleepy pete at 8:51 AM PST - 13 comments

The Evolution of Homer Simpson Best. (and Longest.) Couch gag. Evar.
posted by miss lynnster at 8:50 AM PST - 84 comments

Doctor Who fun and games. While you wait for Series 3 to start - and toss and turn wondering who the next Doctor will be - blow a little bit of time with K-9, the Daleks and the Slitheen.
posted by jbickers at 8:48 AM PST - 56 comments

Revolution: by Ben Whitehouse. Revolution is a series of 24 hour high definition digital art works that record every movement, change of light, weather and mood that takes place at the chosen composition in a 24 hour period - one revolution of the planet. Artist Ben Whitehouse took digital videos of various landscapes that are 24 hours long and are viewed in real time. On this site are 3 minute edited clips created to show some of the transitions that take place within them. Included, among others, are North Bar Lake, Central Park and Lake Michigan.
posted by psmealey at 8:21 AM PST - 4 comments

Impaired emotional processing affects moral judgements. People with damage to a key emotion-processing region of the brain also make moral decisions based on the greater good of the community, unclouded by concerns over harming an individual.
posted by semmi at 8:17 AM PST - 48 comments

Cheap Donuts and Expensive Broccoli: the Effect of Relative Prices on Obesity. Using data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS) for the period 1982-1996, we find that individual BMI measures, as well as the likelihood of being overweight or obese, exhibit a statistically significant positive correlation with the prices of healthful relative to unhealthful foods.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 8:10 AM PST - 61 comments

The Onion News Network. The Onion now comes in a tube.
posted by srboisvert at 7:26 AM PST - 49 comments

The Punk Years, "A definitive history of the music that shook the world, looking at the origins and development of the punk rock movement as a social, historical, political and musical force. Achieved a record audience for Play UK on Saturday July 13th 2002." Parts 1: Wham Bam Thank You Glam [1,2,3] | 2: Year Zero [1,2,3] | 3: 1977 Never Get To Heaven [1,2,3] | 4: Take Three Chords [1,2,3] | 5: A Riot Of Your Own [1,2,3] | 6: Typical Girls [1,2,3] | 7: Ridicule Is Nothing To Be Scared Of [1,2,3] | 8: Punx Not Dead [1,2,3] | 9: Independents Days [1,2,3] | 10: California Uber Alles [1,2,3]. (via)
posted by kolophon at 4:24 AM PST - 110 comments

A Hidden Picasso: Will Shank always suspected something was buried beneath Picasso's Scène de Rue, a somber street scene painted by Picasso in the fall of 1900 during his first stay in Paris. X-rays revealed a second painting: a nightclub scene which appeared to be the prototype for Picasso's Le Moulin de la Galette, a 1900 painting thought to be the first Picasso made in Paris. Technicians extracted the colors visible through the cracks in the surface of Scène de Rue and transferred them onto a black-and-white radiograph.
posted by fandango_matt at 12:26 AM PST - 17 comments

March 26



Warning! The [naked-ladies-swaddled] text of this thought-provoking article about self-censorship on the Internet is SFW. The other content on the weblog of Susie Bright (including the pictures accompanying aforementioned article) is frequently NSFW.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 10:21 PM PST - 30 comments

Modern Thai fiction, in English et plus en français.
posted by carsonb at 9:07 PM PST - 12 comments

Results of tonight's election in Quebec are in. The Quebec Liberal Party has managed just barely to hold onto power in that province, winning a minority government--the first time this has happened in la belle province since...well...since the year the phonograph was first patented. But there's an even bigger story. And that's the apparent collapse of the separatist Parti Québécois vote, in favour of the centre-right Action Démocratique Party, surprising just about everybody other than those who actually live in the province. Here's the breakdown in the vote as of 11:00PM:
Liberal (32.50%) - ADQ (31.19%) - PQ (28.48%). What these results mean for Canada's federal parliament---also in a minority situation---is anyone's guess at this point. The smart money is on Prime Minister Harper calling an early summer election. These results tonight would certainly give him reason to think that Quebec voters are in the mood for change. But like spring weather in these parts, things are quite changeable these days.
posted by runningdogofcapitalism at 8:12 PM PST - 69 comments

"I've been getting death threat comments on this blog." Kathy Sierra, of the Creating Passionate Users blog, has currently canceled a talk at the ETech conference because of death threats on (and off) her blog. Scoble's mad, and so is everyone else. But isn't this what happens when we bring anonymity to the Internet?
posted by zabuni at 7:01 PM PST - 122 comments

Least Wanted: A Century of Mugshots is a collection of authentic mugshots put together by Mark Michaelson. [via AT:NY]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:37 PM PST - 13 comments

"The Create a Comic Project (CCP) is an activity that teaches children creative writing through comics." In New Haven, CT, John Baird works with children to teach writing, art, and creativity in an afterschool program. The results are often surreal, and frequently entertaining. His inspiration? The Penny Arcade Remix Project. (from today's QC newspost)
posted by Eideteker at 4:41 PM PST - 18 comments


I know MeFiltopians have likely found more diverse samplings of images for their desktops than the default windows samples... but have you ever wondered where this image was taken? vanity fair has.
posted by rubin at 4:14 PM PST - 38 comments

Ukraine doesn't like Stalin in advertising. An energy company in Ukraine displayed billboard ads featuring Joey Bananas. For some reason a lot of people object to this.
posted by Mayor Curley at 3:50 PM PST - 25 comments

One burger, double neutrons, hold the quarks. Mikhail Shchepinov believes that eating food enhanced with more isotopes can lead to longer lives. What could go wrong?
posted by greatgefilte at 3:44 PM PST - 21 comments

A comprehensive guide to one of the loudest bands in rock history. Everything you ever wanted to know about Hoggwood, Four Jacks and a Jill, and of course Stonehenge.
posted by grytpype at 3:14 PM PST - 17 comments

Broadway.com has been doing a video diary of Legally Blonde: the Musical as it moves toward Broadway. See the first rehearsal with director/choreographer Jerry Mitchell, visit a costume fitting, or catch a sneek peek of the show's pre-Broadway tryout in San Francisco. Legally Blonde starts performance in New York City on April 3rd.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 3:05 PM PST - 13 comments

Gay? Looking for a place to Live? The Advocate has just published their first-ever list of "Best Places to Live for Gays and Lesbians.” Columbus, OH; Dallas, TX; Ferndale, MI; Ithaca, NY; Lexington, KY; Missoula, MT; Portland, OR; San Diego, CA; Santa Fe, NM; and Tuscon, AZ. Pack your bags!
posted by ikahime at 3:03 PM PST - 35 comments

Yoga Action Squad! Episode 1: Bad, Bad, Bad, Bad Vibrations --- The Yoga Action Squad, an elite team of yogis and yoginis from Santa Monica, spring into action to stop the very negative Dr. Bad Vibes and his overpaid bitchy assistant, Lethargo.
posted by homunculus at 2:58 PM PST - 8 comments

"So take that to your next rain dance and STFU" vs. "YOU GO BACK TO AFRICA AND DO YOUR GAY VOODOO LIMBO TANGO AND WANGO DANCE AND JUMP AROUND AND PRANCE AND ALL OVER THE PLACE HALF NAKED..." Emails between a gay black man and a Native American army recruiter. Copy of the email exchange here. (Quote at the bottom format, so read from the last page up.)
posted by Snyder at 2:12 PM PST - 73 comments

Delusional Calgaria (De-luge-unul Cal-gu-ree-uh): An affliction that affects 4 out of 5 Nova Scotians living away from home in Calgary. And a second opinion...
posted by Old Man Wilson at 1:10 PM PST - 40 comments

Poets on YouTube: Bukowski; Dylan Thomas; Jim Morrison; Allen Ginsberg; Sylvia Plath; Billy Collins; Cookie Monster; and what the hell, even Jacques Brel.

But there's plenty of readings by amateurs as well: for example, lilcutiewithabooty06 reads e e cummings; Michael reads cummings really fast; Tom Waits and Bono read Bukowski; bearded men read Lewis Carroll and Shakespeare; and what if Emily Dickinson had a ukulele?

Mouseover links to see titles; feel free to add your favourites.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:31 PM PST - 29 comments


Beautiful and haunting video of Bike Messengers in NYC.
Not so beautiful and haunting video of Bicycle Messengers.*
*Contains Kevin Bacon
posted by Lord_Pall at 11:37 AM PST - 112 comments

When the fascists embargo, when the boss pollutes, when the economy collapses, when the club plans to close, heck, when you're too high-tech for hierarchy, perhaps it's time you considered launching a worker-owned cooperative (pdfs). Or at least getting to know one near you.
posted by ioesf at 11:04 AM PST - 20 comments

Philip Kives, the "K" in K-Tel records, built his pioneering record label by cramming up to 24 songs on low-fi compilation LP’s (later cassettes, 8-tracks, and CDs) and aggressively marketing them with TV ads. What's your favorite K-Tel album?
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 9:48 AM PST - 33 comments

Happy 59th Birthday, Steven Victor Tallarico. His full name anagrams to "Vertical, not so Vertical", but he is better known as, Steven Tyler, the leader singer of America's Greatest Rock 'n' Roll band, Aerosmith. As a 19 year old from hardscrabble suburban satellite city Yonkers, NY, Steven was an attendee of the original Woodstock Peace and Music Festival in 1969, and then again as a performer in 1994. He is one half of the infamous toxic twins, a drummer, singer of sprituals, front man par excellence and a famous collector of scarves. He fathered a child with über hot model, singer, muse and groupie extraordinaire, Bebe Buell [NSFW!!]. However, she so hated Steven, that she raised their daughter Liv as Liv Rundgren (daughter of Todd) until Liv discovered the truth at age 9, when she noticed that she was a dead ringer for Tyler's other daughter, Mia. Please join me in wishing Mr. Tyler a happy 59th because, given the life he's led, he probably doesn't have too many more of these left.
posted by psmealey at 8:09 AM PST - 107 comments

Steath InkJet Printer Could Rock Industry I know that once your desktop printer reached a certain quality, you probably stopped caring about printing news at all. But suddenly there are a few breakthroughs to get excited about. Kodak's first inkjet printers have cut ink cartridge prices in half, Zink doesn't use ink at all and will fit in your pocket and now an Australian start-up is announcing a $200 printer that will print a page a second. And the inkjet connection to nanotechnology won't just mean cheaper printers. People are using inkjet heads to print microchips and even human cells. Fab@Home is trying to replicate the Altair phenomenon with 3D printers, and you can even get a ZPrinter 450 industrial-strength 3D printer for less than $40,000. How long before the word print means serving yourself the latest Stephen King, a pair of glasses or even a new kidney?
posted by PeteNicely at 8:03 AM PST - 53 comments

PDF-Mags.com. "Free PDF mag's from all over the world with main focus on art, design, illustration and life."
posted by Burhanistan at 7:58 AM PST - 8 comments

Vande Matram, written by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee, and not Rabindranath Tagore (as is sometimes believed), is the National Song of India, and not the National Anthem (which is another misconception).
posted by hadjiboy at 7:39 AM PST - 7 comments

Comedian Mitch Hedberg died two years ago this Thursday. On March 29, see if a local deli will severely ruin their reputation as a tribute to his memory.
posted by myopicman at 4:16 AM PST - 50 comments

Virtual Space Mountain! Wheeeee! (Click on the second video where you sit in front. What are you, a wuss?) Real video just can't do Space Mountain justice, but it does a pretty good job of capturing some other rides. Feel like revisiting some original Magic Kingdom rides without leaving home? Well here you go... Pirates, Mr. Toad, Small World, Haunted Mansion, Tiki Room, Thunder Mountain, Star Tours, Indiana Jones, Alice in Wonderland, The Jungle Cruise, Matterhorn, Roger Rabbit, the late Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse and a bunch of people covered in lightbulbs dancing to the world's most excruciatingly annoying synthesized music. During your virtual day at the park, please just remember to watch out for Goofy. That dude is nothing but a messed up troublemaker. And don't forget... the parking trams do not go to aisles B as in Bambi & C as in Cinderella.
posted by miss lynnster at 3:49 AM PST - 23 comments

The Amazing Breakdancing Toddler [youtube]
posted by srboisvert at 3:23 AM PST - 22 comments

Rebel cartography, postmodern art, or political statement? Nikolas Schiller makes art from satellite/flyover images.
posted by kyleg at 1:55 AM PST - 6 comments

March 24

Captain America started Metafilter in 1999. Maybe not, but Defective Yeti is a consistent source of one-man-band goodness. Who can best The 30 least hot follow-ups to the 30 hottest things you can say to a naked woman or approach the caustic, laser-like wit of a would-be screenplay that begins with"CHENEY sits behind a desk. He is playing NINTENDOGS on his DS, but, instead of trying to teach them tricks, he is STABBING the puppies with his STYLUS." See the favorites page for a quick tour. Previous work from Matthew Baldwin has been here before.
posted by donovan at 11:49 PM PST - 31 comments

There are lots of cool animations at mytoons.
posted by owhydididoit at 11:23 PM PST - 12 comments

A hoax that embarrassed the art world: Pavel Jerdanowitch and the Disumbrationist School of Painting . This "joke on the art critics" was perpetrated by Paul Jordan-Smith, a former pastor who had left his calling after being charged with heresy. He went on to become a writer, editor and journalist, and in 1924 he decided to commit blasphemy against "the strange gods of modern art." The Pavel Jerdanowitch Painting Contest was inspired by the hoax. "The challenge is to produce the worst painting every painted." It's not too late to submit your own entry for 2007. You can check out last year's entries, including the "loser" (winner), for inspiration.
posted by amyms at 10:34 PM PST - 35 comments

Lord (and MetaFilter), forgive me, but Dog Chases Virtual Ball. [A one-link youtube post. 44 seconds long. That is all.]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:20 PM PST - 30 comments

"Hey Man!" America's most beloved pothead is vlogging. He's also still doing stand-up, he's still funny as ever, his wife Shelby is still hot, and he still drives himself around, though he really shouldn't cuz... damn! He drives like some old guy! You think this is a precursor to him getting his own reality tv cable show? Tommy Chong has been mentioned previously in the blue.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:01 PM PST - 39 comments

Betrated: The Iraqis who trusted America the most. George Packer on the dangers facing Iraqis who cooperate with the US. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 6:40 PM PST - 38 comments

Construction of the largest embassy on Earth will shortly be completed in Iraq. Roughly the size of Vatican City, and previously estimated to cost nearly 1 billion, (later reduced to a mere 592 million ), this remarkable feat of engineering "...will have its own water wells, electricity plant and wastewater-treatment facility, 'systems to allow 100 percent independence from city utilities,' says the report..." .
posted by Avenger at 5:53 PM PST - 115 comments

The Architect of the United States Capitol, offers a comprehensive website on the Capitol and grounds. Check out its art and architecture, as well the neighboring Congressional office buildings. There's also the new Congressional Visitor Center with weekly reports on the progress of construction. Not to be forgotten is Constantino Brumidi, a man who spent a lifetime painting in the Capitol (index to PDF biography).
posted by Atreides at 5:34 PM PST - 4 comments

$40 A Day: The Money Shots [Quicktime]
posted by rxrfrx at 4:13 PM PST - 90 comments

YOU'RE DOING GREAT [YouTube; German rap; mind implosion]
posted by Sticherbeast at 3:10 PM PST - 59 comments

Better living through Smallistry at Smallist. Gadgets, spaces, beverages, fetishes: ultra-niche blogging at its finest. [via mefi projects]
posted by cortex at 2:51 PM PST - 19 comments

Phil Foglio, old school RPG comic artist, is publishing online his classic What's New (D&D nerd humor from the pages of Dragon Magazine), Buck Godot (Zap Gun For Hire), and Girl Genius (as discussed earlier).
posted by CrunchyFrog at 11:45 AM PST - 27 comments

A Mediaeval Burglary (alternate formats, wikipedia) is a 24-page lecture transcript from 1915 about a little known burglary of King Edward I's treasure room in 1303. It is a real-life medieval mystery with interesting characters, scandal, cover-up, and an accurate feel of the times from a ground-up perspective, as told in a smoky Victorian library about 100 years ago. Entertaining, includes a hand-drawn map and two relevant manuscript pages.
posted by stbalbach at 10:16 AM PST - 35 comments

One Pancake at a time. I don't think pancakes get much more ridiculous than this.
posted by blasdelf at 9:03 AM PST - 57 comments

Naughty Needles Knitting. Knit yourself a Pony Hood or become a Furmaid. If you're in Kansas City, you can stop by for the all-knitted burlesque show. [Some images on the site NSFW]
posted by jacquilynne at 8:47 AM PST - 13 comments

In Our Time Faced with a wet weekend indoors, I realised it's time to dig into the archive of In Our Time, the most unashamedly intellectual radio discussion series every produced. Broadcast on BBC Radio 4, and hosted by Melvyn Bragg (sorry, make that Lord Bragg), the show's format is simple: Take a topic that's shaped our world, invite a handful of academics who specialize in that field, and chat. But remember: Commercially suicidal program(me)s like this wouldn't be possible if it wasn't for the unique way the BBC is funded.
posted by humblepigeon at 8:28 AM PST - 25 comments

Some movie villains aren't necessarily bad, they're just accented that way. But what criteria do we use to determine a truly, uniquely bad film accent? Obviously, it helps if an actor or movie annoys you to begin with, but some bad accents are simply indisputably painful to watch. Kind of like a mashup of everything in The Speech Accent Archive with a little bit of Received Pronounciation thrown in here and there. Yes it's true, even the average American enjoys trying to rock a ridiculously fake British tone once in a while (there are dialects?). But believe it or not, there are average people in this world actually trying to learn how to sound American too! OK well, on second thought, it's more likely that they're just trying to sound less "foreign" while they're here so we don't mock them.

Now here's the obligatory Fun Quiz portion of the post: what American accent do YOU have? Previously.
posted by miss lynnster at 7:41 AM PST - 96 comments

THIS IS CAKETOWN!!!!!!!
posted by empath at 6:50 AM PST - 34 comments

March 23

World Under Siege: A teenager's video blog . . . a diary under siege.
posted by augustweed at 11:56 PM PST - 36 comments

Home-Ec 101 is a sweet blog about all things domestic. Let Ivy help out with those stank shoes. Ph33r Heather's mad dishwasher repair skillz. Get some quick tips, or even ask a stupid question. Of course, no home-econ blog would be complete without recipes.
posted by owhydididoit at 10:41 PM PST - 7 comments

Once you go barefoot, you won't go back For many serious runners, the best running shoe is no shoe at all. Barefoot runners find themselves less prone to injuries such as plantar fascitis and ankle sprains, possibly because their feet get such a good workout. For those who would like to experience the benefits of barefoot running without the worry of road hazards like broken glass and cooties, Vibram Fivefingers are the next best thing.
posted by freshwater_pr0n at 10:36 PM PST - 36 comments

Stikkit tries to be smart without being clever.
posted by signal at 9:30 PM PST - 26 comments




France's Centre National d'Études Spatiales has unleashed its UFO archives on the internet. (And the internet has been unleashed on CNES' UFO archives). The CNES version of the now trendy UFO-archive-release stunt is a little flashier and a little more romantic than its brethren with a host of pictures, drawings, video and audio and a guaranteed 28% unexplained content. Even the explained phenomenon are interesting in their own way. The AP write-up cites a report where "Experts initially concluded that [a burning object dropping into a field] was part of the propulsion device of a recently launched satellite. Eventually they realized it was a piece of German World War II ordnance that spontaneously exploded four decades after the war." As the archives become more explorable, they promise to reveal strange things that may have visited us, or in the very least, the strange things we and our own habitat are capable of creating.
posted by pokermonk at 7:44 PM PST - 4 comments

A contrarian documentary on climate change produced by UK Channel 4 called "The Great Global Warming Swindle (Google Video) has been making the rounds in the internets. Prominent among the scientists featured in the documentary is one of the most highly regarded physical oceanographers active today, Carl Wunsch (MIT). Unlike his colleague Richard Lindzen, though, it seems that Prof. Wunsch is not exactly pleased with being cast as a global warming skeptic. It turns out that selective editing made him seem to be saying exactly the opposite of what he was hoping to convey. Wunch is pissed.. Also, reviews of the documentary: Real Climate, The Guardian (Monbiot).
posted by bumpkin at 4:53 PM PST - 37 comments

The most expensive things at Amazon, by category.
$255,000 for a House Number?
How about a million dollar space suit from Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin? Or maybe you just need a $40,000 Super Bowl XL coffee table book (Free shipping, of course) Don't miss the reviews...
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 4:19 PM PST - 32 comments

One man's pocket change is another man's $3 million dollar home. Today, 3 previously homeless families were handed the keys to homes located on one of Hawai'i's priciest streets: Kahala Avenue. Japanese billionaire Genshiro Kawamoto has so far chosen 4 native Hawaiian families to live rent free for up to 10 years, making good on a promise made back in November 2006. Obviously, Kawamoto's motives are suspect, as his record as a landlord has been rather tainted. And his approach to alleviating 4 family's homeless situation doesn't solve any systemic problems or go very far in providing long term solutions to homelessness. But for now, it's a feel-good story, and the start of an interesting sociological experiment...
posted by krippledkonscious at 4:12 PM PST - 22 comments

Backrub was Google's predecessor. Ealier versions of Google. The original hardware, featuring the disk cabinet built of lego, now on display in the Gates building at Stanford University.
posted by PercussivePaul at 3:02 PM PST - 18 comments

Happy Birthday Ric Richard Otcasek turned 58 today. It's All Mixed Up, I had no idea he was so old. Well, no matter how old you are, you still need to let the Good Times Roll, so Let's Go wish him our very best, since it's pretty much Touch and Go for any rock star approaching age 60. Though many of the Cars hits where sung by the late, great Ben Orr, Ocasek was one of the more recognizable front men of the 1980s. So distinctive that, on April 18, 2006, he was ranked number 50 in The Boston Phoenix list of "The 100 unsexiest men in the world." Ocasek has had a low-key, but reasonably successful career as a solo artist, written a book of poetry and had a cameo role in the John Waters feature film Hairspray. He also appeared on the Colbert Report where he volunteered to lead a commando mission to "rescue" Stephen Jr., the baby eagle at the San Francisco Zoo. Ric also is notable as a producer, though he is probably best known (or infamous in indie circles) for producing Guided by Voices' much maligned Do the Collapse. As for my own personal connection, the first time I saw him was in 1984, when the Cars played a show with Wang Chung and the last time was when I stood next to Ric at Luna's Farewell show at the Bowery Ballroom, a well known Nightspot. Nice guy, he let me buy him a beer. It was, he said, Just what he Needed.
posted by psmealey at 1:46 PM PST - 61 comments

My National Security Letter Gag Order "Under the threat of criminal prosecution, I must hide all aspects of my involvement in the case -- including the mere fact that I received an NSL -- from my colleagues, my family and my friends. When I meet with my attorneys I cannot tell my girlfriend where I am going or where I have been. I hide any papers related to the case in a place where she will not look. When clients and friends ask me whether I am the one challenging the constitutionality of the NSL statute, I have no choice but to look them in the eye and lie."
posted by grouse at 1:37 PM PST - 61 comments

Reviews of this Book
posted by juv3nal at 1:09 PM PST - 20 comments

Soulforce Equality Ride! Soulforce, a nationwide organization working to end religious discrimination of gays and lesbians are in the middle of their second annual Equality Ride to raise awareness of Christian colleges and universities that discriminate against queer students. GLBTQ students are discriminated against everywhere. The Riders have been met with both open arms and anger. The Reverend Mel White, who runs Soul Force, ghost wrote Billy Graham's and Jerry Falwell's autobiographies and worships at Falwell's church in Lynchburg, VA in silent protest. Previously.
posted by parmanparman at 12:17 PM PST - 51 comments

To Write Love On Her Arms is a story and the response to a story. I first saw the shirt on Switchfoot's Jon Foreman and thought "Hey that's a cool shirt." Months later I saw an ad and went to look them up. That's when I found the story. As their MySpace page points out, they are not a 24-hour helpline, nor are they trained professionals, but they do "hope to serve as a bridge to help." Its a small organization right now, using a unique method of achieving recognition and exposure, but it is an important "movement of love, a commitment to begin answering these needs and offering hope to the many who struggle with depression, addiction, suicide, self injury." (from the FAQ)
posted by allkindsoftime at 11:09 AM PST - 14 comments

i haven not slept in 126 hrs. my mental aptitude is completely shot. words that come out of my mout are completely random ; nonsensicle...dropping into bed will be GOOD FEELNGI.. How long can you stay awake? This guy made it just over 5 days, and kept a journal. Randy Gardner holds the world record of 11 days, which he set as a high school student in 1964. On the fourth day he had a delusion that he was Paul Lowe winning the Rose Bowl, and that a street sign was a person. Previously: [1], [2]
posted by gottabefunky at 11:04 AM PST - 115 comments

Keepon and Roillo are two robots designed for non-verbal interaction with children. Keepon is shaped approximately like a snowman, with two cameras for eyes and a microphone for a nose. After one bar of music, he starts getting down in his robotic-type fashion. (two videos that need flash are the attraction here)
posted by mkb at 10:05 AM PST - 13 comments

Holy fucking shit. I mean, I've heard of people eating people before, but this is pretty gruesome. recipe
posted by baphomet at 9:59 AM PST - 57 comments

Nude Marathon! Psychotherapy traveled down a lot of strange paths in the 60s and early 70s, but perhaps none stranger than the naked group therapy sessions, some up to 48 hours long, supervised by Paul Bindrim. Bindrim's sessions were the subject of a documentary film and an unflattering, thinly fictionalized novel by Gwen Davis Mitchell. Bindrim sued Mitchell for libel. Can descriptions of a fictional character be libelous of a real person? Yes.
posted by escabeche at 9:27 AM PST - 13 comments

Cockeyed Absurdist - jonmc's 300 most favorite songs and why, including Iron Maiden, The Exciters, Neil Young (as a greaser), Captain Beefheart, Hanson, and of course, The Dictators.
posted by hellbient at 8:47 AM PST - 134 comments

"Welcome to the free episode-distribution portal for The Happiness Show; the world's first, and only, television program entirely about happiness." Why? We just might need a happiness pill.
posted by sluglicker at 8:46 AM PST - 1 comments

How about some Dhansak? Or maybe some Patra-ni-Machi? Is anyone in the mood for Chicken Farcha?? And to wash it down, how about a cool glass of Falooda with cream? Day before yesterday, was Navroze (Jamshed-e-Navroze), and the Zoroastrian community of Iran, along with the Parsis of India, gathered together at their Fire Temples to ring in the new year, with prayers and good wishes.
posted by hadjiboy at 8:42 AM PST - 10 comments

So everyone's already seen regrettable food over and over, but this chick makes, eats, and reviews it according to the original documentation.
posted by pieoverdone at 8:36 AM PST - 28 comments

The Bear's Pages - the 'Bear' being the legendary Augustus Owsley Stanley III, the 60s acid cook.
posted by daksya at 8:13 AM PST - 8 comments

Max Q, named after the aeronautical engineering term, is the only astronaut rock band (but not the only musical astronauts). Not to be confused with the barbershop quartet.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 8:11 AM PST - 7 comments


CBC documentary about the gay rights movement within Iran: Part One, Two, Three.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 7:10 AM PST - 4 comments



You really shouldn't miss the snazzy ukulele stylings of the great Roy Smeck, strummer and showman extraordinaire, who was not only fast as greased lightning, but for whom the ukulele also occasionally functioned as a wind or percussion instrument. The man was indeed a wizard of the strings: just give him a slide and watch him lay down that Hawaiian sound. And as you'll see here, he was still going strong in his later years. [most links to YouTube]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:30 AM PST - 15 comments

Whether accidentally showboating, or by putting like-minded people in touch, the web is no stranger to online death. But now someone's taken it one tragic step further. The internet being what it is, I have no doubt this will end up on rotten.com or similar.
posted by essexjan at 5:28 AM PST - 30 comments

thank you mask man - lenny bruce 1971, animated, language nsfw, may offend the easily offended
posted by vronsky at 5:22 AM PST - 13 comments

Five Minutes to Kill Yourself. The object is... well... pretty self-explanatory. Possibly NSFW due to graphic violence, and that it's a Flash game about killing yourself because you hate your job so much.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:38 AM PST - 43 comments

"I thought, 'Why don't we just raid the place?' " --the newest and only currently viable way to check up on how the billions and billions we're spending on reconstruction in Iraq is being spent--fake raids by the US military, making it seem like the recipients aren't receiving aid from us, and in fact are being targeted by us.
posted by amberglow at 4:02 AM PST - 35 comments

March 22

It's like Google Maps...for space. Wikisky is a draggable, zoomable, web-based star map. And if you click on a star or other object, it brings up a page with all the information you could want on it, including recent articles and astrophotos that contain that object. And it does lots more. Go explore.
posted by Jimbob at 11:30 PM PST - 25 comments


Actor Woody Harrelson's father just died of a heart attack at age 69. Don't care? Well, let's add a few fun facts into the story to make it more interesting & newsworthy for you. Charles Harrelson died in prison, where he was serving two life sentences for murdering Judge John Wood, Jr. (the first federal judge to be murdered in the 20th century) for a payment of $250,000. Oh, and also? Many conspiracy theorists feel that he was also deeply involved in the murder of JFK.

It's no wonder Woody smokes pot and feels like an alien creature. Can anyone blame him?
posted by miss lynnster at 11:08 PM PST - 26 comments

Timbaland accused of plagiarism Mega-popular music producer Timbaland has been accused of lifting the heart and soul of Nelly Furtado's "Do It" from a C64 SID chiptune arrangement by GRG of a MOD file, "AcidJazzed Evening," originally composed by Finnish music tracker Janne Suni. Or maybe he was just repurposing his own "original" ringtone from MSN. Nerds get angry and are dismissed as haters. The original tune is catchy, even as an MP3. It reminded me of the MOD collection I amassed in 1993, when I could fit hours of music on a floppy disk. My reminiscences took me to Amiga Music Preservation to try to reconstruct my old MOD collection from memory, but I failed. Maybe MP3 and AAC have made tracked music formats obsolete for most.
posted by bugmuncher at 9:54 PM PST - 34 comments

"A bad way to make a living." A series on the history and ecological impact of strip mining in southeast Kansas during the early 20th century that includes articles, photo galleries with sound files, and video slideshows about the region. The area, known as the "Little Balkans," because of the large Eastern European population that worked the mines, was a large mining community that has given the US the second largest electric shovel in the country, a home to one of the largest socialist newspapers in the country (called Appeal to Reason and founded by Julius Wayland) as well as the Little Blue Books series started by Emanuel Haldeman-Julius in 1919. Oh yeah, it was also --second paragraph-- the place that most of the bootleg alcohol that fueled the Kansas City Jazz Scene of that time was from as well. Of course, if you should ever find yourself in SEKS, and you eat meat, go to either Chicken Annie's or Chicken Mary's [transcript] since they're only a few miles apart in their modern incarnation. The legends you hear growing up there aren't always true, but it doesn't matter because the onion rings are fantastic. And yes, in some ways all Kansas has left is history.
posted by sleepy pete at 9:36 PM PST - 9 comments

At 33 meters, Nemo 33 in Brussels, Belgium is the world's deepest indoor pool.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:52 PM PST - 37 comments

Filmmaker David O. Russell's history of abusive behavior is well-documented. It spawned fistfights with George Clooney on the set of Three Kings. But two recent videos from the set of I ♥ Huckabees provide a telltale glimpse of how Russell's "directorial style."
posted by ed at 6:53 PM PST - 97 comments

Eric Volz, an American, is serving 30 years for a murder he did not commit. His DNA didn't match any of the evidence found at the crime scene, and there's plenty of very serious evidence showing that he didn't commit it (such as the fact that he was in a town two hours away while the murder was being done.) This needs as much media attention as possible. (First link is a Youtube video)
posted by premiumpolar at 6:53 PM PST - 63 comments

The Toilet Paper Encyclopedia from toiletpaperworld. Filled with fun facts about the history of toilet paper, including the results of various toilet paper surveys (more people chose toilet paper over food as a necessity if stranded on a deserted island), toilet paper stories, statistics about which kinds of toilet paper are most popular worldwide, and zingers (toilet paper jokes and observations). Previously on Metafilter, The Whole World Toilet Paper Museum.
posted by amyms at 6:45 PM PST - 9 comments

Murder at the Cricket World Cup. The world's most civilised game just took a turn for the sinister. Less than 24 hours after Pakistan (rated fourth in the world) was roundly trounced by Ireland (first appearance at the Cricket World Cup), the almost universally-liked Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer was found unconscious in his hotel room and died in hospital. Jamaican police have just announced that based on the autopsy results they're treating the death as murder by manual asphyxiation.

This isn't the first time in recent history that Pakistan has been embroiled in scandal, nor the first time that Metafilter has discussed it, but this is in a whole new league. Is it a match-fixing scandal connected to far-Eastern betting syndicates, or something else?
posted by Hogshead at 5:26 PM PST - 40 comments

Question Time Iraq Special (Skip to 04:45 to begin). Question Time is a British TV institution, where five prominent politicians debate current affairs while being questioned by a studio audience. The Iraq edition, available online, features the British Secretary of State for Defence, a popular, anti-war former party leader, the aristocratic old socialist leading the Stop-the-War coalition, the first female leader of a Muslim state … and John Bolton.
posted by Aloysius Bear at 4:58 PM PST - 34 comments

Ohio Valley Creative Energy Ohio Valley Creative Energy was founded to provide a heat intensive multi-arts facility for glass, clay, and metal artists that will be powered by methane, AKA landfill gas.
posted by pt68 at 3:56 PM PST - 3 comments

Think this year's Super Bowl commercials sucked? MyBowlAd.com thinks so too. Three guys set up the website to raise $3 million for a 30 second Super Bowl 2008 commercial spot featuring the companies who purchase air time (in seconds). Oh yeah, it'll star "Internet celebrities," with the One Red Paperclip guy and Scotty and Fiddy on board. Could we have another Million Dollar Homepage on our hands?
posted by c:\awesome at 3:42 PM PST - 18 comments

The Einstein Puzzle by Flowix Games is based on an old DOS game called Sherlock, which, in turn, was based on Einstein's (Supposed) Puzzle (Previously). No, it's not Friday yet, and no, it's not Flash. It's a really logical game, and it's really damn hard. I've only won once, and that was within the first few times of playing. If you find it hard to figure out what's going on, read THIS... It helped me to figure out EXACTLY what the hell was going on. The authors are Russian, and the help in the game may only serve to confuse you. ;) It's free, and runs on Windows, Mac, and Linux. I'm hooked on it, Dammit. :D
posted by Vamier at 2:38 PM PST - 32 comments


Uyghur goes pop! Fully downloadable album (with samples to try before you don't have to buy) of pop music from Xinjiang, aka East Turkestan, home to the Uyghur.
posted by Abiezer at 1:07 PM PST - 15 comments

Starbucking, the true story of one man's highly caffeinated journey. Starbucking is a documentary film that follows Winter, a man who has dedicated his life to visiting every Starbucks in the world. He's been to 6,000 Starbucks (and counting) since 1997, and is trying to break his record of visiting 28 Starbucks in a day. So, "sit back, have a cup of joe, and watch as one man defies society's norms in a never ending search for the lady in green."
posted by londontube at 10:05 AM PST - 239 comments

No Impact Man - "For one year, my wife, my 2-year-old daughter, my dog and I, while living in the middle of New York City, are attempting to live without making any net impact on the environment. In other words, no trash, no carbon emissions, no toxins in the water, no elevators, no subway, no products in packaging, no plastics, no air conditioning, no TV, no toilets…"
posted by dobbs at 9:33 AM PST - 103 comments


Revisiting Imperial Russia A Century Later MeFi veterans will undoubtedly remember how amazed we all were in 2001 by the color photographs of rural Imperial Russia by Sergei Prokudin-Gorskii. Or maybe some of you newer members remember when we revisited that site in 2004. Last year, photographers returned to a number of the original locations photographed by Prokudin-Gorkii to re-photograph the same locations as they are now. For the most part, little has changed.
posted by briank at 8:01 AM PST - 20 comments

Gitmo in Black and White. Some great photography with narration and chilling stories from the Gulag at Guantanamo Bay. (Has sound. Maybe NSFW, if your workplace is squeamish about our foreign policy)
posted by nevercalm at 7:44 AM PST - 15 comments


New study reveals prejudices amongst disabled. A research paper by Mark Deal, a PhD student and researcher at UK disability charity Enham reveals the news that disabled people have the same prejudices about disability as non-disabled people: the research points to a hierarchy of impairment, ranking Deaf as the most ‘desirable’ impairment followed by Arthritis, Epilepsy, Cerebral Palsy, HIV/ Aids, Down’s syndrome and Schizophrenia amongst disabled people. These prejudices are almost identical to those held by the non-disabled sample, with the only difference being that Cerebral Palsy and HIV/Aids were placed in reverse order.
posted by patricio at 7:26 AM PST - 48 comments

It's spring, and that means its convention time! In Las Vegas, tomorrow, don't miss the Virtual Air Traffic Convention in Las Vegas! Dusseldorf on Saturday? There's Top Hair 2007 wow! But wait there's more--- Perhaps you'd like to polish your skills in treating the multiple-disordered suicidal client! I know I would! Functional Foods? Learn why seawater has a salty taste at the Bagkok International Book Fair! Hot! Find your own convention.
posted by parmanparman at 6:51 AM PST - 11 comments

The folks at DownsizeDC have this crazy idea that the members of Congress should have to read the bills that they vote on. Here is their plan to make it happen.
posted by Who_Am_I at 5:56 AM PST - 48 comments


March 21

What's the Trouble? - "How Doctors Think"
posted by Gyan at 11:06 PM PST - 59 comments

The Traffic Police of Mumbai (formerly Bombay, India), one of the most densely populated and traffic-ridden cities in the world, are becoming media savvy. They post billboards, answer traffic complaints sent via sms and have even started a scare campaign against drunk driving that places bloody drink coasters in bars. They are definitely taking their jobs seriously. And so far, some Mumbaikars seem pretty happy with their work.
posted by miss lynnster at 10:55 PM PST - 34 comments

Wikivid is an encyclopedia of informative videos. It's currently in alpha, but has articles on 140 software products, such as Acid Pro, Coldfusion, Maya, and Ruby on Rails, with each articles hosting multiple videos. Apparently, after it comes out of alpha, more categories will be available.
posted by owhydididoit at 10:32 PM PST - 9 comments


The Mysterious Holes of Peru. While the world is generally familiar with Machu Picchu and the Nazca Lines, another mystery has come to light through the modern science of satellite photography.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:57 PM PST - 49 comments

Larry Bud Melman has Passed Away. Larry was there with David from the Beginning and continued to make appearances on the show through 2002. He was 85.
posted by UseyurBrain at 5:06 PM PST - 93 comments

In Texas, a white teenager burns down her family's home and receives probation. A black one shoves a hall monitor and gets 7 years in prison. The state NAACP calls it `a signal to black folks.' The youth had no prior arrest record, and the hall monitor--a 58-year-old teacher's aide--was not seriously injured. But Shaquanda was tried in March 2006 in the town's juvenile court, convicted of assault. Passwords here.
posted by paulinsanjuan at 4:10 PM PST - 202 comments

The Addventures. Imagine the possibilities of an interactive web, but before Flash, before Java, before video plugins, before anything but text and graphics (and graphics take up so much bandwidth!). Addventures came out of this era, and over the years there have been quite a few (not all paths SFW) incarnations of the concept. You can even roll your own with open source. Can you find your old stories?
posted by mazatec at 4:02 PM PST - 11 comments

The New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clark is in Washington DC at the moment and met President George W. Bush formally for the second time this morning (NZST). Although New Zealand is no longer an ally of the US we are apparently very, very, very good friends – but there is only talk about a free trade agreement between us (unlike some).
posted by Samuel Farrow at 3:18 PM PST - 24 comments

The Lives They Left Behind. Previously on MeFi, the Village Voice article. Related are efforts to restore cemeteries located on the grounds of old "insane asylums," creating memorials See information from Washington, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Georgia.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 12:31 PM PST - 12 comments

"The great thing about the market is that it has nothing to do with the actual stocks." Jim Cramer--probably most famous for his CNBC show "Mad Money"--comes clean in a TheStreet.com interview about the tactics he used while managing his hedge fund and how he, you know, might influence Apple's stock if he were in the game today. Feathers get ruffled.
posted by quite unimportant at 11:39 AM PST - 53 comments

The Queer, the Quaint, the Quizzical (1882). A Cabinet for the Curious.
posted by stbalbach at 11:33 AM PST - 18 comments

A Soldier's Lament by Brian Mockenhaupt in Esquire, brought to you via MSN. We've seen a similar post by a Marine officer recently, but I liked the tone of this one a bit more because it does a better job of showing us the inside of a warrior's head.
posted by pax digita at 10:32 AM PST - 43 comments

Create Digital Music has two pieces on the making of Doctor Who's theme song. The second is an introduction to Delia Derbyshire, who is considered to be the "woman behind the men" behind the notability of the song. She pioneered techniques of synthesizing sounds, sampling and looping in the sixties. One WFMU blogger waxes on about Delia, who "was an inspiring collaborator" working behind the scenes of the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop. BBC Four produced a documentary about the workshop called Alchemists of Sound which aired in 2005, ten years after the workshop closed due to budget cuts.
posted by boo_radley at 10:04 AM PST - 19 comments

The city of Detroit is in a bad way. House are cheaper than cars. The city's neighborhoods are in decay. Families are leaving. Even "revived" areas are struggling. Entire portions of the city are starting to revert to prarie and ruins. Can the city be saved or is it time to give up on the Arsenal of Democracy?
posted by fancypants at 8:59 AM PST - 220 comments

BBC News: "Gee, I just love your accent." The American nation may be more wary of crossing borders, but their love affair with the British accent continues unabated. Despite the fact that there are multiple variants therein, and what may be considered a "low-class" accent in the UK is still considered a "high-class" posh accent in the US. Naturally, the Brits will play this up to the hilt - and it may help in getting them jobs, credibility, Oscars and Emmys, by no less an authority than Stephen Fry.
posted by badlydubbedboy at 7:03 AM PST - 178 comments


March 20

The Grand Canyon Skywalk, supposedly the highest man made structure in the world, opens this week. While the official website has been up and down, the skywalk has already made it into Snopes and drummed up its share of controversy. Former astronauts John Herrington and Buzz Aldrin joined members of the Hualapai tribe today in the first walk across the structure designed by Mark Johnson of MRJ Architects (slideshow, youtube). For more about all things Grand Canyonesque, you might like Polishing the Jewel: An Administrative History of Grand Canyon National Park. [previously]
posted by jessamyn at 10:39 PM PST - 80 comments

AT&T and Verizon obey FBI emergency requests, even if they're of dubious legality, and they get paid for it. But AT&T can't be sued, they say, because that would endanger national security.
posted by homunculus at 10:23 PM PST - 42 comments

Are You Generic? "Giving Brand-America the finger since 2001." The folks at Are You Generic have a few basic demands: "natural, unprocessed foods; ad-free space; trustworthy news sources; a healthy body image; promotion of the independents; and the spread of knowledge." They're getting their message across by means of "culture jams." Their first target was Starbucks in 2002. Some more recent actions are listed here, including Confessions of a Generic Magazine. But they have stuff for sale, so some might argue that they're not that much different than those they mock. Either way, their site does have a great collection of international street art.
posted by amyms at 9:24 PM PST - 63 comments

You think you've seen it all and then you see Snow Donuts
posted by Citizen Premier at 9:14 PM PST - 23 comments


Nearly 36 percent of adults in Washington D.C. are functionally illiterate, compared with a 21% national average. More and more American adults are lacking basic reading and writing skills. Meanwhile, among some groups, adolescent illiteracy is estimated to be as high as 50%. (Is text messaging to blame? Looks like maybe not.)
posted by miss lynnster at 8:43 PM PST - 70 comments


The National Automobile Slum: I propose that we now identify the human ecology of America precisely for what it really has become: the national automobile slum.-- James Howard Kunstler “Can America Survive Suburbia?”
posted by lonefrontranger at 7:58 PM PST - 45 comments

Eyes on the Nations is a web site by a young man from North Carolina named Jordan Hill. He's working in various corners of the world to help with community development as a part of a soft christian missionary approach for the University of the Nations and Youth With a Mission. He's also a talented and curious photographer with an eye for people, places and critters. (Warnings: NSFW if you haven't ever seen old issues of the National Geographic. Worse, some of this is Xanga)
posted by mmahaffie at 7:53 PM PST - 5 comments

A YouTube Manifesto. A YouTube fan speaks truth to power. And then he shows us teen girls removing clothes! (Believe it or not neither is NSFW.)
posted by davy at 7:26 PM PST - 32 comments

Irma Boom designs some of the largest, brightest, most colorful, and interesting looking books in print today. In this 2001 interview, Irma talks about her unique work. This Friday she'll be awarded the gold medal at the Leipzig Book Fair for this, "The Most Beautiful Book in the World."
posted by inconsequentialist at 5:16 PM PST - 13 comments

An office worker loses it one day, jumps over the table and mercilessly beats his co-worker. The action is spectacular, but is it real or staged? You decide.
posted by Second Account For Making Jokey Comments at 4:51 PM PST - 69 comments

Cashiers du Cinemart. Film Threat's Dave Williams: "a thin, primitive hobby publication with an obvious ax to grind; making it far less interesting than you think it is, and compelling me to conclude it's impossible for you to ever get your shit together...killing one more tree for your pointless, directionless, self-aggrandizing 'zine with nothing to offer is a sad, selfish waste." Best known for the Anti-Tarantino saga, one man's quest to get a director to acknowledge his influences, Cashiers is a great '90s 'zine with archives online.
posted by klangklangston at 4:44 PM PST - 15 comments

Lucid TV: A webcomic about doctors.
posted by Snyder at 3:52 PM PST - 29 comments

A Mountain of Broken Toilets (1250kb jpg). Brought to you by the relentless Recycle Guy (home of undiscovered literary gem The Brown Sheet. Previously
posted by squalor at 3:43 PM PST - 21 comments

The Fireladders of Soho. (New York, that is.) [via]
posted by Armitage Shanks at 3:21 PM PST - 26 comments

Some say alcohol prohibition was a failure. Some say it worked. Alcohol abuse costs society billions. Groups seek to add a new flavor to regulation. Citizens are even taking up the cause.
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 2:37 PM PST - 115 comments

New York University's Tamiment Library, one of the world's foremost centers of learning on labour history and the Left, has been given the archives of the Communist Party USA. (alternate non-NYT link) The donation includes 20,000 books, journals and pamphlets and a million photographs from The Daily Worker’s archives. Highlights include the original, hand-written will of Joe Hill.
posted by By The Grace of God at 1:58 PM PST - 13 comments

A snoezelen room is a multi-sensory environment that provides comfort for people with severe mental disabilities. They tend to incorporate a combination of visual, aural, and tactile stimulii, but can take many different forms. The rooms generally offer soothing, non-directive therapy, but the effects are hard to quantify. While mostly used with children, some think the snoezelen can help those with alzheimer's or dementia.
posted by jtajta at 1:49 PM PST - 16 comments


Swimming with Sharks. How do College Republicans learn to use dirty tricks? They practice on each other. TNR's Franklin Foer describes the summer 2005 race for College Republican National Committee chair. Via Paul Krugman. Previously.
posted by russilwvong at 12:40 PM PST - 48 comments

Chris Ware animates a segment of an episode of the new This American Life television show. [previously: Chris Ware, This American Life on TV, Chris Ware on This American Life’s radio program]
posted by ijoshua at 12:23 PM PST - 32 comments

Seeing Beyond Sight: Photographs by Blind Teenagers is the product of Sound Shadows, a literacy-through-photography class taught by Tony Deifell, Shirley Hand, Dan Partridge and Jessica Toal from 1992 to 1997 at the Governor Morehead School for the Blind.
posted by fandango_matt at 11:22 AM PST - 12 comments

Premiere Magazine, "The Movie Magazine" , one of the first mainstream magazines to cover the moviemaking business, is shuttering after twenty years and 200+ issues. The current issue (with Will Ferrell on the cover), on newsstands now, will be its last. Premiere.com will stay in business. I was a subscriber for most of the 1990s, until I began to notice a shift from news and features about movies to a celebration of Hollywood celebrities. I let my subscription lapse in 2001, when Premiere re-launched itself with a more celebrity-friendly slant, and celebrity It Girl Penelope Cruz on the cover. Reminisce about the golden years with Premiere's Cover Gallery.
posted by Lord Kinbote at 10:42 AM PST - 42 comments

Baghdad: Mapping the violence. Interactive flash based bomb data navigator from the bbc.
posted by srboisvert at 9:45 AM PST - 20 comments

The Codex Seraphinianus, that rare and amazing volume, has been scanned in high-res glory and posted to Flickr. If you are lucky enough to afford it, copies are available. Previously.
posted by suckerpunch at 9:17 AM PST - 59 comments

Tap Project. What if every glass of water you drank quenched someone else's thirst? Looks like its only official in NYC restaurants this Thursday, but hopefully it will expand to other cities.
posted by allkindsoftime at 8:56 AM PST - 20 comments

Chinese Christians in House Churches throughout the country have heard "a call from God for the Chinese Church to preach the Gospel and establish fellowships of believers in all the countries, cities, towns, and ethnic groups between China and Jerusalem. This vision is no small task, for within those nations lay the three largest spiritual strongholds in the world today that have yet to be conquered by the Gospel: the giants of Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism." They call this movement Back to Jerusalem.
posted by afu at 8:50 AM PST - 79 comments

Earth Album is primarily a Google Maps/Flickr mashup with lots of lovely photos. They also offer a YouTube mashup (focused on local music). Both are somewhat hard to use, because it's difficult to see where you're clicking. Fortunately, they also have Earth Album USA and Earth Album Japan.
posted by owhydididoit at 8:10 AM PST - 8 comments

The destruction of the Paris Commune. African-American photo postcards. War models. Luminous Lint offers pages and pages of exhibits of vintage and modern photography and all sorts of related stuff. [via the excellent Bouphonia]
posted by mediareport at 6:42 AM PST - 6 comments

How MySpace creates born-again Christians. The link between MySpace, nacissism and religious fundamentalism.
posted by bobbyelliott at 6:06 AM PST - 109 comments

Map of Science. Science is the most interconnected of all human activities and requires a series of maps to chart its changing landscape. Scientific method: relationships among scientific paradigms.
posted by nickyskye at 5:55 AM PST - 15 comments

So you wanna be a rock and roll star. Here's a place to start. GOSK, or the guitarist's online survival kit, is a very handy guide to both scales and modes as well as all chords in all positions on the neck. In order to put it all together, and map modes to chord progressions and really start jamming, this little php widget is pretty helpful. Though in all things, even if you want to learn from the masters, you should never forget the basics. However, if you decide that using these online utilities to improve your performance is too much, you can always go back to school, or else forego training entirely and emulate rock star attitude and style in real life situations.
posted by psmealey at 5:15 AM PST - 18 comments

Ira Glass sits at a soundboard and schools us on the art of storytelling.
posted by bigmusic at 3:31 AM PST - 75 comments

"Did you see the politics? It made me angry." Conversations by Grownups As Imagined By Kids.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 2:09 AM PST - 36 comments

March 19

For years, MDI has been developing a car that runs on compressed air. Last month, they signed an agreement with Tata Motors to produce the MiniCat - a zero-emissions vehicle that will travel up to 180 miles on $3 worth of fuel. See it in action here. (youtube)
posted by Afroblanco at 9:57 PM PST - 45 comments

Ampd customer support responds to Michael Pusateri's complaint over their advertising on Ann Coulter's site. They are a-political [sic] and try to reach "as many segments of the market as possible" - Homo, bisexual, and Republican.
posted by stevil at 9:39 PM PST - 21 comments

The Criterion Contraption: Matthew Dessem is going to watch every last DVD in the Criterion Collection and blog about it. Illuminating and knowledgable film writing. You can start, if you wish, with the entry on my favorite film, The Passion of Joan of Arc, or pick from the complete index.
posted by Falconetti at 9:24 PM PST - 55 comments

United States attorneys can be fired whenever a president wants, but not, as § 1512 (c) puts it, to corruptly obstruct, influence, or impede an official proceeding. "The day the news broke that Ms. Lam, who had already put one Republican congressman in jail, was investigating a second one, Mr. Sampson wrote an e-mail message referring to the “real problem we have right now with Carol Lam.” Bush, Gonzales and Rove are trying to cover their tracks.
posted by meddeviceengineer at 8:55 PM PST - 143 comments


Discover Magazine has opened its back-issue archives (1992-present) to the public, you no longer need to be a subscriber.
posted by stbalbach at 8:01 PM PST - 6 comments

Billy Tipton (1914-1989) was a moderately popular jazz musician who happened to have been born a girl and lived as a man. In retrospect, some see Billy as a woman pragmatically trying to make it in a male dominated field, others see Billy as clearly transexual. If you like jazz of the 30's and 40's, forget Billy's gender for a moment and take a listen to Billy's playing! For more backstory, biographer Diane Middlebrook has posted a timeline of Tipton's life. More recently, Tipton has inspired jazz ensemble The Tiptons launches sound, a novel, a few plays and butch/punk/queer director Silas Howard is working on a film. Oh, and here's WP.
posted by serazin at 5:10 PM PST - 22 comments

Math Team Solves the Unsolvable E8
"If you thought writing calculations to describe 3-D objects in math class was hard, consider doing the same for one with 248 dimensions. Mathematicians call such an object E8, a symmetrical structure whose mathematical calculation has long been considered an unsolvable problem. Yet an international team of math whizzes cracked E8's symmetrical code in a large-scale computing project, which produced about 60 gigabytes of data. If they were to show their handiwork on paper, the written equation would cover an area the size of Manhattan."
posted by ericb at 4:50 PM PST - 67 comments

The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library has 200,000 historic maps and 5,000 atlases. A whole heap of them is online in very high resolution and you can explore the collection by location, subject, date, publisher, author and projection. They give virtual tours, select a map of the month and have a section called Maps in the News, where they profile Darfur and Iraq.
posted by Kattullus at 4:50 PM PST - 8 comments

The Cutting Edge - The Magic of Movie Editing BBC documentary on the technique and art of editing film. With commentary from Scorscese, Spielberg, and many more. Google vid.
posted by vronsky at 4:36 PM PST - 33 comments

Ever wondered where your laptop's parts come from, what it's made of, or what toxins are in it?
posted by aerotive at 2:47 PM PST - 19 comments

Old-style gopher servers are still working Apparently there are 86 hosts still serving the pre-Web gopher:// protocol. (MetaFilter's 2000-era gopher site is still down.)
posted by joeclark at 2:36 PM PST - 35 comments

Shorpy is an unusual photoblog; billed as "the 100-year-old photography blog," it focuses on found images from many, many decades gone by. Some favorites, so far.
posted by jonson at 2:35 PM PST - 26 comments

It's Hazzardgate! While Dukes Fest '07 is still set to go off without a hitch, John Schneider and Tom Wopat have apparently been blacklisted from their scheduled July 14th appearance at the Cincinatti Pops after the local NAACP branch complained about the original tv show's "racist overtones." But of course the big questions are... what does Cooter think about it all? How will the Hazzard fans cope? And what about the Ukes of Hazzard? Are they involved? Boss Hogg remains silent on the issue.
posted by miss lynnster at 2:12 PM PST - 66 comments

Monkey Fluids --20th century book and magazine illustrations with new text. ; >
posted by amberglow at 2:11 PM PST - 10 comments

Elementymology. An fascinating look at the origins of the names of 117 elements, which also includes the names of the elements in many languages and a discussion of the origin of chemical symbols. If the real elements bore you, you may be interested in the fictional elements and particles in Star Trek and the Legion of Super Heroes (as well as some real ones as used in comics, prev.).
posted by blahblahblah at 1:23 PM PST - 7 comments

Are you in college and dreading the coming of finals? Is that first weekend in May filling you with silent dread? Need to unwind but aren't really into seeing another movie or getting loco with your mexican breathern? Do you miss those carefree days of summer camp? Wicked! May 5th is New England Intercollegiate Nudist Day! (nsfw) via
posted by Stynxno at 11:07 AM PST - 45 comments

“No dogs bark” by Juan Rulfo is the story of a father carrying his son, a mortally wounded bandit, through the mountains to find a doctor. In Spanish and in English translation.
posted by jason's_planet at 9:32 AM PST - 18 comments

The Caravan Project: "Imagine you're a customer looking for a book you don't find on the shelf. As you would now, you'll likely ask a bookseller to check the store computer for it. As is not yet possible, the bookseller will say: "We can order you a print copy or we can sell it to you in other formats, some of which could be ready for downloading by the time you get home. How would you like it?"
posted by mattbucher at 9:30 AM PST - 60 comments

Civilization ends in 3... 2... 1.... Search the internet the Kevin Federline way.
posted by boo_radley at 9:27 AM PST - 53 comments


Fifty years ago today, the bodies of Jean Vincendon and François Henry were finally being brought back to Chamonix. The two young mountaineers had set-off for the ascent of Mont-Blanc and found themselves blocked in an ice storm on their way down. A rescue team found them several days later, sitting on the glacier by temperatures of -30°C at 4000 meters of altitude. They were alive, photographed even, but could not be brought down and died later on, abandoned in the wreckage of the old Sikorsky rescue helicopter which had crashed beside them. The operation fiasco caused a total reorganization of the mountain rescue service in France.
posted by rom1 at 8:10 AM PST - 6 comments

WTFCNN?
posted by chunking express at 7:10 AM PST - 73 comments

I am a robot. Interstellar Scrotum arrived on everything2 mysteriously in the year 2000. Fifteen months later he was gone forever. In between he produced writing, quirky, strange, and sad.
posted by nasreddin at 6:50 AM PST - 22 comments

40 years ago, the Vicious Cycles motorcycle club assaulted a construction worker before taking to the road. Fortunately, filmmakers Chuck Menville (father of voice artist Scott Menville) and Len Janson were on hand to film the gang's misdeeds. Menville and Janson's picture would ultimately become part of a trilogy, with Blaze Glory and Sargent Swell of the Mounties produced wit similar eye-catching style. Decades later, the filmmakers' work would be echoed in another tale of conflict, in addition to a product-themed homage to more recent hipster subculture.
posted by Smart Dalek at 6:13 AM PST - 10 comments

Beware of the panty ninja! He certainly was dedicated.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 5:53 AM PST - 29 comments

Spend a blissful 59 minutes and 7 seconds traversing the continent of Africa through her traditional music. This excellent stream (featuring just the right amount of background info) from the folks at Afropop Worldwide [previously] features plenty of the kind of effortlessly rolling, lilting rhythmic vibes that make African traditional music some of the most sublime in the world. "So don't expect over-the-top ethnography, just relax and enjoy acoustic Africa."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:05 AM PST - 11 comments

It is spring here in India, and Ugadi (the Spring Festival) is being celebrated with much pomp and ceremony throughout the southern part of the country. In Maharashtra, the same festival is referred to as Gudi Padwa.
posted by hadjiboy at 1:43 AM PST - 15 comments

Bruce Sterling's talk at SXSW is described on the landing page as a 'rant'. It isn't. What it is is a survey from 10,000 feet at what's happening in culture and technology and on the web, and I reckon it's worth spending the hour of your life it'll take to listen to it. I hope you agree. [mp3, 59 minutes]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:06 AM PST - 52 comments

March 18

A timeless question: Can sex work be shamanic? Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Explore the music, the writings, and the reasonable rates of Wahkeena Sitka Tidepool Ripple. (Unsurprisingly, NSFW)
posted by sisquoc15 at 11:46 PM PST - 61 comments


Hey, on your way to work tomorrow, instead of sitting around with your finger up your a$$, look around. There's a union out there called AFSCME and they're busting their balls for you doing all the sh*t work you take for granted.
posted by milarepa at 9:16 PM PST - 51 comments

"This is a story of how the impossible became possible. How, for centuries, scientists were absolutely sure that solids (as well as decorative patterns like tiling and quilts) could only have certain symmetries - such as square, hexagonal and triangular - and that most symmetries, including five-fold symmetry in the plane and icosahedral symmetry in three dimensions (the symmetry of a soccer ball), were strictly forbidden. Then, about twenty years ago, a new kind of pattern, known as a "quasicrystal," was envisaged that shatters the symmetry restrictions and allows for an infinite number of new patterns and structures that had never been seen before, suggesting a whole new class of materials...."

Physicist Paul J. Steinhardt delivers a fascinating lecture (WMV) on tilings and quasicrystals. However, it turns out science was beaten to the punch: a recent paper (PDF) suggests Islamic architecture developed similar tilings centuries earlier.
posted by parudox at 8:54 PM PST - 11 comments

The Open Secret. "They were a light in the dark ... This is who and what I am; this is my tribe — and, look, I’m famous and life is fun". Matthew Parris sings the praises of those old British poofs, the camp, safe, funny gays that your mum liked. All together now I'm Free! more more
posted by grahamwell at 8:13 PM PST - 35 comments

A new genre of literary wikis is in the works. Pynchon fans can find as well as contribute answers to questions about his works at the Thomas Pynchon Wiki. The site currently offers sections on The Crying of Lot 49, Gravity's Rainbow, Mason & Dixon, and Against the Day. Each offers spoiler-free page-by-page annotations, alphabetic search and a compilation of reviews. The Pynchon wikis were created by Tim Ware, "curator" of ThomasPynchon.com. Elsewhere, literary wikis have been started for James Joyce's Finnegan's Wake and the works of Shakespeare.
posted by beagle at 7:18 PM PST - 37 comments

Students are now using the internet to criticise their teachers behind their backs by using a popular new site called Rate My Teachers. While some 'feedback' left at the site is relatively tame, many teachers are not spared from a flood of insults (which isn't surprising when a group of venting teenagers are involved). The owners of the site are calling it a useful teaching critique tool, but teachers groups are labelling it "a vengeful smear campaign." The site is available in a host of international flavours, such as the UK and Australia, to name but two. Hmmph. Back in my day, we used to just write our 'critiques' on the blackboard while the teacher wasn't in the room...
posted by Effigy2000 at 6:29 PM PST - 67 comments

Today, the UNESCO Convention for the Promotion and Protection of Cultural Diversity enters into force. 148 signed the convention and 54 states have ratified (Brazil, Canada, China, France, and India to name a few). The ratification and entry into force took only 1 1/2 years - that is to say record time. Only 2 states decided to vote against it: the United States and Israel. The US and Hollywood are very unhappy that this convention will become effective. Meanwhile, party countries seem quite pleased.
posted by pwedza at 5:17 PM PST - 98 comments

Vote different. Unauthorized Internet ad for Obama converts Apple Computer's '84 Super Bowl spot into a generational howl against Clinton's presidential bid. more
posted by caddis at 4:53 PM PST - 98 comments

Living small in the city: The smallest, coolest apartment contest results. Out of the city: the Micro Compact Home.
posted by nickyskye at 4:41 PM PST - 29 comments

Bye, Ze. Zefrank, the very fine video blogger, who in a single year created a massive and devoted web community by asking his audience to dress their vacuums, whip ass with Ray, and make an Earth sandwich, has decided to call it quits and head off to Hollywood. Perhaps the resources will bring him a bigger audience. But I'll miss the hearts and flowers, even the occasional lecture. To think it all started with dancing lessons. [Previously]
posted by Toekneesan at 4:20 PM PST - 36 comments

Amish Girls Gone Wild? There is a tradition in Amish communities to allow young adult members to experience the outside world and to decide if they will join the church for life. This Rumspringa period is a time to taste the forbidden fruit of beer, cell phones and dancing. It has spawned a movie and book and I find personally fascinating.
posted by UseyurBrain at 4:10 PM PST - 36 comments

Bud BlueBlew It With a typically punny Hollywood Reporter headline, the news is out that Anheuser-Busch's new video site with Original Content (launched during the Super Bowl, naturally) is not nearly as popular as expected. The promoters blame the registration/age-verification requirement for discouraging users (noted here earlier today), but 21 State Attorneys General say it's not discouraging enough. But is the content any good? Here are a couple reviews.
No, I didn't link or even mention the site's obvious address. I don't want anybody to think I actually encourage stuff like this ;)
posted by wendell at 2:53 PM PST - 23 comments

Archaic English Project: "The primary goal of the Archaic English Project was the resurrection of favorite archaic English words."Also, A Concise Dictionary of Middle English. A few Middle English texts. Harvard's Chaucer website
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 1:27 PM PST - 18 comments

Jonathan Lethem's Promiscuous Materials Project invites playwrights and screenwriters to adapt his work for stage or screen. In an essay for Harper's, he explains that, "few of us question the contemporary construction of copyright. It is taken as a law, both in the sense of a universally recognizable moral absolute, like the law against murder, and as naturally inherent in our world, like the law of gravity. In fact, it is neither. Rather, copyright is an ongoing social negotiation, tenuously forged, endlessly revised, and imperfect in its every incarnation." NPR reports he is also giving away the option to turn his novel You Don’t Love Me Yet into a film, with some caveats. For those of us who aren't filmmakers or playwrights, many of the available stories are posted for our reading pleasure.
posted by joannemerriam at 12:48 PM PST - 9 comments


Doxory. Often in life we are faced with a choice of 2.0 possible courses of action. Should I do X or Y? Now you can harness the wisdom of the web crowds to resolve those painful dilemmas for you!
posted by chrismear at 5:15 AM PST - 27 comments

While the Queen was in New Zealand on Christmas Eve 1953 a lahar destroyed a rail bridge in Tangiwai. When the Wellington to Auckland Express tried to cross the bridge, the resulting accident killed 151 people. On behalf of her mother, Prince Andrew is currently in New Zealand, commemorating a hero, and another lahar has errupted, from the same volcano. The death toll is zero.
posted by Samuel Farrow at 1:29 AM PST - 13 comments

March 17

Here's a charming interactive site for your kid (or the kid in you): Kusama's World of Dots. Brought to you by the Queensland Art Gallery.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:07 PM PST - 28 comments

The Global Trouble AlertMap
Are you curious about that chemical spill in Minnesota? Or how about the bio hazard situation in Honduras? The Havaria Information Systems AlertMap is updated in (near) real-time and the wealth of bad news is fairly astonishing. Plus they've got RSS feeds for whatever bad (or locationally relevant) news you want delivered. There are USA only maps, Europe only maps and Hungary too (slow day, just a fire). Previously (focused on bird flu tracking though several comments note how freakin' cool the map is)
posted by fenriq at 10:14 PM PST - 18 comments

The Iraq Veterans Memorial is "an online war memorial that honors the members of the U.S. armed forces who have lost their lives serving in the Iraq War. The Memorial is a collection of video memories from family, friends, military colleagues, and co-workers of those that have fallen." A project of the Brave New Foundation. [Via Bushflash.]
posted by homunculus at 9:55 PM PST - 12 comments

Facing Life With a Lethal Gene. Say you're in your early twenties. For years you've seen members of your family twist and turn invouluntarily and developing dementia due to your family history of Huntington's Disease. Even if you have the gene for the disease, the symptoms are unlikely to hit until you're 50. Would you want to find out if you're going to share the same fate as your relatives, or live life out as much as you can unaware if you're going to suffer from it too? Another touching human interest story from the NY Times which has had a bunch of these recently.
posted by portisfreak at 9:34 PM PST - 54 comments

"The person is not dead yet," said Jerry A. Menikoff, an associate professor of law, ethics and medicine at the University of Kansas. "They are going to be dead, but we should be honest and say that we're starting to remove the organs a few minutes before they meet the legal definition of death."
. . . .
In addition to giving DCD donors morphine, valium and other drugs to make sure they do not suffer as life support is withdrawn, doctors often insert a large tube into an artery and inject drugs such as the blood thinner heparin to help preserve the organs. Some say those measures may hasten death.
posted by orthogonality at 9:18 PM PST - 90 comments

Discover Magazine's 20 Things You Didn't Know About... Short, interesting and occasionally witty facts about Aliens, Lab Accidents, Nobel Prizes, Meteors, Death, Sleep and more.
posted by kisch mokusch at 9:09 PM PST - 13 comments

The Cuyahoga County Courthouse is a magnificent building. [via]
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 8:38 PM PST - 45 comments

The cause of the famous feud between Gabriel García Márquez and Mario Vargas Llosa has finally been revealed. A photograph, taken right after Llosa punched Márquez has even been published. It's got it all, violence, Swedish stewardesses and a piece of steak used as band-aid! Literary feuds don't get much better than this!
posted by Kattullus at 8:23 PM PST - 21 comments

Since January 1st, men in Shamrock, TX, have been working on their Donegal beards and today they were judged on how they did. Missed it? Maybe you can watch the documentary by Mike Woolf or listen to a song(mp3) from the soundtrack by The Gourds.
posted by DonnieSticks at 6:44 PM PST - 5 comments

Newsfilter: Urgent pet food recall. Apparently, some pets are suffering kidney failures and death after eating some pet food. 60 million pieces have been recalled.
posted by elpapacito at 5:52 PM PST - 112 comments


Happy Saint Patrick's Day, Mefites! Remember, WEAR green, don't DRINK it. Take this opportunity to shed light on the legacy of colonization and imperialism and the universal nature of popular resistance... to bond with friends... to sing trad songs to your cat. And if you can't find or trap your own leprechaun? Just go hang out in Mobile, Alabama. They've got plenty there.
posted by miss lynnster at 2:27 PM PST - 67 comments

"Spotlight Live ... puts guests in the limelight in a way that will surpass their wildest dreams. Guests can walk in the door for dinner and walk out the door a star" In the age of American Idol, why go to see a show on Broadway, when it's your birthright to be a show on Broadway, complete with your own professional back-up singers and dancers?
posted by stagewhisper at 12:55 PM PST - 9 comments

Disco Polo - It makes ITALO DISCO look like StockHausen, Disco Polo Is coming to rule the world (and fix your sink).
posted by sgt.serenity at 12:46 PM PST - 13 comments

Wikipedia/Essjay/‘New Yorker’ updates The New Yorker denies ever offering to pay the expenses of “Essjay” (“Ryan Jordan”), the Wikipedia administrator with the fraudulent credentials. The Wikipedia Weekly podcast, Episode 14 (not transcribed yet), at about 12:30, reports:
I actually did correspond with the deputy editor of the New Yorker... and I asked them specifically: Did Miss Schiff ever ask Essjay for his real full name during the course of reporting? [...] They came out with this, which I don’t think has been published anywhere yet...: “I think that between our Editors’ Note and the Times story, it’s clear what happened. The only thing that hasn’t come up before is the question of expenses. So, for the record, Stacy Schiff never offered to reimburse Essjay for his telephone expenses or anything else. [And] Essjay did tell her that if she wanted to cover them, she could send a cheque to the Wikipedia Foundation, which she did not.”
posted by joeclark at 11:53 AM PST - 35 comments

Does anyone remember Glassdog (the fake corporation, that is)? Panther house is sort of the ten-years-later version. (Bonus: the blog is pretty good.)
posted by Tlogmer at 10:47 AM PST - 10 comments

Susan Sontag on the moral superiority of novels over the mass media. "The real force behind the argument against literature, against the book, comes, I think, from the hegemony of the narrative model proposed by television." [Sontag previously on MeFi]
posted by patricio at 9:55 AM PST - 60 comments

Teenager Thiogo Olson achieved nuclear fusion with an apparatus built in his basement from parts found at his local hardware store and on eBay. Another teenager put together her very own Littrow Spectrograph for $300. Young people have been doing some fascinating science ever since the first kid combined vinegar and baking soda in their model volcano. Not only are they making some remarkable discoveries, they're finding it pretty lucrative.
posted by Toekneesan at 9:30 AM PST - 9 comments

Alaska's calling Yoooooooooooou! Not interested in that Free Land in North Dakota or Kansas? Anderson, Alaska is giving away 26 lots on a first come, first serve basis. No gas station, no grocery store, no traffic lights, but grizzley bears abound!
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 9:17 AM PST - 19 comments

Shut Up Tape It's what all the fashionable abusers are putting over their spouses' mouths these days. Of course, there are more socially acceptable uses, like in movie theaters or anywhere cell phones are overused. And police departments are buying it by the case for crowd control. Don't put guests with opposing viewpoints on your talk show without it!
posted by wendell at 4:51 AM PST - 37 comments

Jeopardy history. This early hint came to pass last night; For the first time after 23 years, all 3 contestants in an episode of Jeopardy came to an exact tie.
posted by Silky Slim at 3:28 AM PST - 43 comments

March 16

Legend of Ruby Ridge British documentary (55min) explores the aftermath of the federal siege of the Weaver family.
posted by hortense at 11:43 PM PST - 116 comments

Albert Fish is one of the most brutal, yet least known serial killers in American history. A true cannibal, Fish may have provided some inspiration for the character Hannibal Lecter. Fish claimed more victims than the Zodiac killer and has inspired a movie or two of his own.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:22 PM PST - 36 comments

Thomas Paine is sometimes forgotten, but dealt with some modern predicaments. Quotes, letters & essays, and an assortment of his writings.
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 9:55 PM PST - 7 comments


Brooklyn's Black Fire Percussion: bringing high school marching band drumming to a whole other level of funky expression. [All links YouTube]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:52 PM PST - 40 comments

Buffy is back. If you're a fan of the show still jonesin' after all these years, Joss Whedon and the staff have created an official season eight - in comic form.
posted by Roman Graves at 7:52 PM PST - 57 comments

Orphan trains. From 1853 to 1929 an ambitious relocation adoption program run by the Children's Aid Society, founded by Charles Loring Brace, sent kids from urban slums and orphanages out to live on Midwestern farms, with mixed results. Some became state governors, others suffered abuse or servitude. Even though we use the name Orphan Train, few of these children were true orphans. Some were half-orphans, having lost one parent to disease or accident. Some had both parents but had run away do to abuse or neglect. By 1910, CAS had "placed out" over 106,000 children and the program ran for another 19 years. Also, similar programs were run by the New York Foundling Home (called Baby Trains), New York Juvenile Asylum, and the Boston Home for Little Wanderers. In all, at least, 200,000 children found themselves moved from the city to small towns and farms across the Nation.
posted by Brian B. at 7:23 PM PST - 9 comments

Are You There God? It's Me, Monica In equal parts a book review, investigative journalism and an autobiographical account; the author of this article takes on the topic of teenage oral-sex in the US today. There are no easy answers for the reader at the end, but it makes for fairly compelling reading. (Apart from some sexual terminology, the article is SFW) [via]
posted by your mildly obsessive average geek at 7:11 PM PST - 71 comments

Andy Barker, P.I. is a new comedy series starring Andy Richter, former Conan O'Brien sidekick and star of the brilliant but cancelled Andy Richter Controls the Universe. The series also features Tony Hale (Buster in Arrested Development), Harve Preshnell (from a lot of things, such as Fargo) and Clea Lewis (Audrey in Ellen). NBC is streaming all six episodes on its website. The last episode, featuring Amy Sedaris and Ed Asner, will not be shown on NBC, but is only available online. Pretty much everyone thinks it will be cancelled. The first episode, written by series co-creator Conan O'Brien, can be downloaded for free from iTunes. Finally, here's an interview with Richter and series co-creator Jonathan Groff and a New York Times article about the series.
posted by Kattullus at 7:10 PM PST - 29 comments

Yo La Tengo Request-a-Thon! Yo La Tengo is once again playing your requests right now (until 11 PM EST), in exchange for your pledges, live on WFMU (currently playing: Sonic Reducer, by the Dead Boys!) As an added treat, the band has reunited with Dave Schramm for this performance! Live webcam stream links here, and here. Ogg, 128k MP3, AAC and RealAudio audio-only streams are also available .
posted by melorama at 5:35 PM PST - 36 comments

The "Revolution" that isn't. The idea that well-educated women are leaving their careers behind and choosing to stay at home is a recurring story- notably in "The Opt Out Revolution", Lisa Belkin's 2003 essay in the New York Times. A closer examination [.pdf, long] challenges the idea that women are returning home as a matter of biological "pull" rather than a workplace "push", and argues that how the media portrays the personal decisions of a few obfuscates the real social needs of most American working families. In 2007, the United States is one of the few countries in the world without paid maternity leave.
posted by ambrosia at 4:18 PM PST - 55 comments

It's a sticky subject. Romney apologized for his handling of it. Tony Snow felt it was "nice and zippy." John Kerry seems to have embraced it without any problems. Now John McCain latches onto it. Can he free himself?
posted by Kirth Gerson at 4:06 PM PST - 55 comments

Super-Surge Me. General David Petraeus is asking for another Army brigade in Iraq, in addition to the 21,500 mentioned in January and the 4,700 support troops added last week. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 3:25 PM PST - 28 comments

Baraka is an astonishing film voyaging six continents and twenty-four countries. Directed by Ron Fricke, it is a visual tour de force painstakingly shot on Todd AO-70mm film. Information on the film (and its upcoming sequel!) can be found here or you can always watch the making of.
posted by ageispolis at 3:08 PM PST - 48 comments

AIDS cured! with seven herbs and spices. Who knew? Sadly, its another example of anti-west superstitions, which isn't limited just to Africa.
posted by damn dirty ape at 2:55 PM PST - 48 comments

Tim O’Brien – the painter and illustrator, not the writer – is so good with Photoshop (not to mention paintbrushes) that he can make Ronald Reagan cry.
posted by gottabefunky at 1:53 PM PST - 40 comments


B3ta Bumper Book of Sick Jokes (flash) on Scribd, a youtube for pdfs. For extra weirdness listen to the mp3 (the link is at the bottom of the pdf display).
posted by srboisvert at 11:56 AM PST - 12 comments

Employees of Miller turn to youtube to express their concerns about pension benefits. [link via Church of the Customer]
posted by drezdn at 10:31 AM PST - 52 comments

What do you do with ten ketchup packets and McDonald's french fries? Make a painting of Morgan Spurlock of course! Or you can take artist Jack Daws' route and build a replica of the Twin Towers using the same ingredients and sell it for $1,500.
posted by inconsequentialist at 10:19 AM PST - 17 comments

"You stand in front of the work feeling nervous, confounded, unaccountably emotional, perhaps even a bit giggly. These feelings persist when you go away. You can't stop thinking about what you have seen. This is how I have been feeling since seeing the work of Roger Ballen." (via)
posted by johnny7 at 10:14 AM PST - 11 comments

Winter has been world's warmest on record.
☀Temperature for December-February highest since 1880
☂The 10 warmest years on record have occurred since 1995
posted by four panels at 9:27 AM PST - 60 comments

Eat poop, you cat! Yes, it's that game, but with a scosh of beta-ness and a dash of Web 2.0bility
posted by boo_radley at 9:06 AM PST - 12 comments

Mike Strizki lives in the nation's first solar-hydrogen house. "The technology this civil engineer has been able to string together – solar panels, a hydrogen fuel cell, storage tanks, and a piece of equipment called an electrolyzer – provides electricity to his home year-round, even on the cloudiest of winter days. Mr. Strizki's monthly utility bill is zero – he's off the power grid – and his system creates no carbon-dioxide emissions. Neither does the fuel-cell car parked in his garage, which runs off the hydrogen his system creates."
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:59 AM PST - 28 comments

Judy's tour diary (pdf, somewhat long) isn't your standard travelogue. The author is Judy Porter, a professor of sociology from Bryn Mawr Collge. Her expertise in the fields of AIDS and poverty are apparent as she paints a vivid picture of life in West Africa, and the health and social conditions that come with it. She also set up a web page that has links to a number of photo slide shows and hand shot video footage. West Africa has been extensively discussed previously.
posted by The Straightener at 8:06 AM PST - 6 comments

The Women Of India
posted by hadjiboy at 7:38 AM PST - 14 comments

Introducing... the iRack! (video, youtube)
posted by empath at 6:37 AM PST - 46 comments

Name of the Year looks to determine the most absurd - but real? - name out there, March Madness-style. Be sure to fill out your bracket today! Somehow, I get the feeling none of these are gonna register on the Baby Name Wizard
posted by jtajta at 6:36 AM PST - 52 comments

Por Por: Squeeze-bulb horn music of Ghana[pdf].
posted by geos at 6:16 AM PST - 8 comments

That ain't bad for two weeks work and 75,000 pounds. On this day in 1977, after being with the label for just six days, punk pioneers The Sex Pistols were fired from A&M Records due to pressure from other label artists and its Los Angeles head office. 25,000 copies of ‘God Save The Queen’ were pressed and the band made £75,000 ($127,500) from the deal, thus cementing the legend of the Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle. Under pressure by Conservative MP Robert Adley among others due to their outrageous behavior - specifically, their notorious performance on ITV Today with Bill Grundy - EMI had dumped the band in January. Also appearing on television with Grundy and the Pistols that day were members of the Bromley Contingent: Siouxsie Sioux and Steve Severin, who later formed Siouxsie and the Banshees.
posted by psmealey at 4:33 AM PST - 60 comments

March 15

Nhat Hanh back in Vietnam for the second time since his exile in 1973. He will lead three requiem masses "to offer prayers and healing energy to those who suffered unjustly as victims of war."
posted by Abiezer at 11:59 PM PST - 7 comments

We regret to inform you that we your husband's submarine is missing, and possibly sunk. Oh, wait. Never mind[pdf].
posted by ctmf at 10:10 PM PST - 34 comments

Titan Sea and Lake Superior
This movie, comprised of several detailed images taken by Cassini's radar instrument, shows bodies of liquid near Titan's north pole. These images show that many of the features commonly associated with lakes on Earth, such as islands, bays, inlets and channels, are also present on this cold Saturnian moon. They offer strong evidence that larger bodies seen in infrared images are, in fact, seas. These seas are most likely liquid methane and ethane.
Radar Shows Evidence of Seas
posted by y2karl at 9:10 PM PST - 31 comments


WorldCat is a beta search utility that helps you search for an item in libraries near you. Results include over 1 billion items in more than 10,000 libraries worldwide. Brought to you by OCLC, previously on MetaFilter.
posted by owhydididoit at 7:12 PM PST - 27 comments

Studies in Scarlet: Marriage & Sexuality in the US & UK, 1815-1914 , courtesy of Harvard University, features digitized trial narratives for over 400 cases--some famous, most not. (Harvard also has a more general collection of trial narratives here.) There are earlier trial narratives at Rictor Norton's Homosexuality in Eighteenth Century England: A Sourcebook and Early Eighteenth-Century Newspaper Reports; see also CrimeCulture's Rogue's Gallery and a Victorian anthology, Curiosities of Street Literature (originally published in 1871). Albert Borowitz has a brief history of true crime narratives here. For more historical criminality from the investigator's point of view, check out the Forensic Medicine Archives Project at the University of Glasgow. (Main link via VICTORIA.)
posted by thomas j wise at 5:05 PM PST - 13 comments

Nature's Sumo Wrestlers. Hundreds of thousands of northern elephant seals once inhabited the Pacific Ocean. They were slaughtered wholesale in the 1800s for the oil that could be rendered from their blubber. By 1892, only 50 to 100 individuals were left. Today estimates are that about 150,000 roam the Pacific Ocean. And they are extraordinary animals - the males can average 1,800 kg and 5 meters in length. Mirounga angustirostris spends eight to ten months a year in the open ocean, diving 1000 to 5000 feet deep for periods of fifteen minutes to two hours, and migrating thousands of miles, twice a year, to its land based rookery for birthing, breeding, molting and rest. Once on the beach, they survive up to 3-4 months with almost no food or water. You can spy on them at through the live cam at Ano Nuevo State Reserve from 9am to 9pm (EST) though at this point, it’s mostly only the pups that are still on the beach as most of the adults have headed back to sea. Also, they do not like to be woken up.
posted by otherwordlyglow at 4:07 PM PST - 28 comments

Watchismo is a blog dedicated to portable timepieces, spotlighting the spectacularly beautiful (and spectacularly expensive), among the rare handcrafted artifacts such as this watch made from wood, or this one made from bone. [Via]
posted by jonson at 4:01 PM PST - 19 comments

Ron Paul is now officially running for President. Some say his views, especially on Foreign Policy, make him a longshot.
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 3:51 PM PST - 144 comments

A wee bit of a problem More mistakes come to light in the French lab that screwed Floyd out of his Tour win
posted by cccorlew at 2:59 PM PST - 23 comments

"Dear Internet, I'm Sorry..." Meet Michael Crook, being billed as "the most hated man on the internet". First coming in to view when taking a really bad idea to it's ridiculous extreme, he appears on Fox's Hannity & Colmes to lambast members of the military for being "worthless pukes" and whining about their compensation. One site decides to give him a taste of his own medicine, which he clearly didn't like.
posted by revmitcz at 2:52 PM PST - 40 comments

Vet Kills Himself After VA Turns Him Away Marine veteran Jonathan Schulze survived the war in Iraq but almost two years after he came home, it ended up killing him, reports The Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith. He had one of the toughest jobs in the war: taming the insurgent hotbed of Ramadi in 2004.
posted by Postroad at 1:14 PM PST - 59 comments

Discovery [youtube] Anyone who's ever been to Tokyo or any other big city on Earth knows how hard it is to navigate crowded, narrow sidewalks, especially when you have to "take a dump."
posted by KokuRyu at 11:45 AM PST - 61 comments

If you love to hate Fox News, this blogger has thoughtfully collected a number of Fox's more outrageous on-screen captions and website nonsense from the past few years. (Nice to see John Gibson admit he's a weakling.) [via]
posted by metasonix at 11:19 AM PST - 95 comments

A massive whirlpool, has a appeared off the coast of Sydney, Australia. I wonder if it spins counterclockwise?
posted by xmattxfx at 10:46 AM PST - 45 comments

On April 1, after the Ritualistic Burning of the Civilian Clothes, two fellows will spend four months and ten days travelling from Hong Kong to London, wearing tuxedos the entire time.
posted by fandango_matt at 10:41 AM PST - 30 comments

The Gregg Museum of Art & Design at NC State University has a great collection of folk arts. The strongest section is in ceramics, with stupendous representation from the NC wood-fired, salt and alkaline glazed traditions. There's this 1868 Hartsoe Alkaline glazed jug, this 19th cent. jug with kild-drip, this Hancock Half-Gallon jug, this Randolph Cty salt-glazed jug with ashy shoulder, and then the moderns: Burlon Craig, Vernon Owen, Mark Hewitt. There are also great photographs, weird furniture, outsider critters, and more. There isn't a good browse function, so you need some idea of what you want to search for.
posted by OmieWise at 9:22 AM PST - 9 comments

Same Old Dogs, Same Old Tricks. In a rare act of bipartisan cooperation, the House of Representatives passed a group of bills strengthening the FOIA (HR 1309), streamlining access to Presidential Libraries (HR 1255), and expanding safeguards for whistleblowers (still in process, HR 985), with those that were passed having a veto-proof margin. The White House sharply criticized these acts of transparency as unconstitutional, a threat on the established separation of Powers, and as a threat to national security [pdf]. All of which heralds back to an earlier time, that looks vaguely familiar...
posted by rzklkng at 9:17 AM PST - 23 comments

Outstanding collection of 18th century obstetrical models at the Anatomical Museum in Modena, Italy. NSFW, the teratology section at the end is especially gruesome. [via]
posted by bobobox at 9:15 AM PST - 25 comments

This year, Maryland has been on a path to become the first state to abolish capital punishment, and a bill to repeal the death penalty will be voted on in committee within days. Exonerated death row inmates have been campaigning fervently in support of the bill (including Kirk Bloodsworth, a Marylander who was the first death row inmate ever to be proven innocent by DNA)--and the exonerated are joined by a gamut of other voices that one might not normally expect in the debate. Murder victim family members are vocally supporting abolition. Law enforcement officials, including prosecutors, wardens and police chiefs, are vocally supporting abolition. The Baltimore city council – which presides over the lion’s share of Maryland’s violent crime -- is unanimously in support of abolition. Even Maryland's governor, Martin O’Malley, has taken a bold stance in support of abolishing executions, going so far as to publish an op-ed, "Why I Oppose the Death Penalty," in the Washington Post on the day of the abolition bill’s hearings in Annapolis. And, last but not least, the public is more than 60% in support of replacing the death penalty with life without parole.

So why are so many legislators still supporting death penalty?
Even if the bill doesn’t pass in this session, it seems like Governor O’Malley has nothing to worry about for having come out ahead of the legislature on this issue. It’s the legislatures—in Maryland and elsewhere—that are falling behind, as the entire country backs steadily away from capital punishment.
posted by snortlebort at 8:44 AM PST - 91 comments

Ficlets are extremely short stories (a maximum of 1024 characters). Other writers swoop in and write prequels and sequels to your ficlet, making interesting branching narratives a la Create Your Own Adventure.
posted by Plutor at 7:45 AM PST - 13 comments

Michael Zebuhr was a 25-year-old Ph.D. candidate at Clemson University. A year ago he was visiting his sister in Minneapolis, and was killed during an attempted hold-up. The assailant pleaded guilty, but others think there is more to the story.
posted by Kibbutz at 5:58 AM PST - 59 comments

Chiquita will plead guilty to a count of doing business with a paramilitary group in Colombia. Mefites might remember Chiquita from here. In Colombia they are not the only brand to have been on "Trial". Chiquita is not new to controversy. If you are choking on your banana co-op america might interest you.
posted by adamvasco at 3:40 AM PST - 27 comments

Beware the Ides of March. Almost everyone knows that the phrase comes from the story of the assassination of Julius Caesar, most familiarly in the Shakespeare version, although "The Life of Augustus," written by Nicolauas of Damascus, contains what is thought to be the earliest narrative of the plot to murder Julius Caesar, based in part on eyewitness accounts. But, not everyone knows that The Ides Of March is also a band [flash intro] (best known for the song "Vehicle") [YouTube], an epistolatory novel by Thornton Wilder (with forward by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.), an instrumental song by Iron Maiden [YouTube], and two paintings, one by Edward Poynter and one by Andrew Wyeth.
posted by amyms at 3:32 AM PST - 10 comments

Mastermind? admitted planning attacks.... can you believe a verdict from partial transcripts edited by the US defence department that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed planned these attacks?
posted by Prunedish at 3:17 AM PST - 111 comments

The selected works of Deng Xiaoping. Three volumes:
1938-1965
1975-1982
1982-1992
posted by sluglicker at 2:40 AM PST - 13 comments

Sgt. Wells's New Skull. In the epidemic of brain injuries coming out of the war, Army neurosurgeons had never seen someone survive such a devastating wound. But Brian Wells jokes that he just left part of his head in Iraq. Someday, he says, he'll have to go back and get it.
posted by srboisvert at 1:25 AM PST - 21 comments

March 14

On s'embrasse?
posted by growabrain at 10:51 PM PST - 45 comments

Punk rock in north-central Iowa, 1977-2007 as featured in The Secret History of the Cedar Valley, an exhibit at Wartburg College (Waverley, Iowa). The opening reception is this Saturday, March 17, with performances by Modern Life is War, Beat Strings, Brooks Strause, and The Torpedo Darlings [WARNING: these four band links have music on them!]. --more inside
posted by tracy_the_astonishing at 10:22 PM PST - 14 comments

Death Race: "I confirm that if I should die on the Tough Guy route 2007, that it is my own bloody fault for coming. No claim can be made by me or my estate for loss or injury suffered by my failure."
posted by thisisdrew at 10:18 PM PST - 14 comments

Sad Sack George Baker's subtly subversive WWII strip.
posted by klangklangston at 9:59 PM PST - 15 comments


Sami Rasouli is an Iraqi-American who was born in Najaf . He left Iraq in the late 70's to teach, first to the UAE, and then to Germany. In 1986, he moved to the US, where he eventually opened Sinbad's, a successful restaurant. In late 2003, he went back to Iraq after learning his mother had died. Upon his return to the US, he could not stop thinking about the country he left, and the state it was in, so in 2004, he sold his restaurant and moved back. There, he founded the Muslim Peacemakers Team, based closely off of the Christian Peacemakers Team (and in fact was a friend of Tom Fox). He currently lives in Iraq, although comes back to visit the US every year or so, to raise awareness, visit friends, and to share news about what is really going on in Iraq. [Links to Articles, E-mails, and Interviews inside.]
posted by wander at 9:27 PM PST - 7 comments

Pseudomamma on the foot: An unusual presentation of supernumerary breast tissue.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:19 PM PST - 27 comments

Flash Circle TD, successor to the wildly popular Flash Element TD, was released today.
posted by sen0rjon3s at 7:50 PM PST - 20 comments

Jeff Han, shows advances in his multitouch interfaces a year later. YT video 1. YT video 2.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:08 PM PST - 36 comments



Does it suck? Or does it rock? No, this is NOT like Will It Float? or Will It Blend? It's a cute use of the Google API to search for how often your inquiry comes up as "x sucks" or "x rocks" or a small number of other similar phrases. MetaFilter rates 8.7 out of 10 (87% rocks, 13% sucks). A delightfully evil way to rate - and compare - various things.
posted by wendell at 4:28 PM PST - 92 comments

Malcolm X on Front Page Challenge, Joni Mitchell on Take 30, Dr. Norman Bethune on 5 Nights and the rest of the CBC archives.
posted by serazin at 4:24 PM PST - 6 comments

Indian police smell pretty. Police in an Indian province are airing a new strategy for crime fighting and community relations: "Police in India’s Western state of Gujarat are to wear new uniforms impregnated with the fragrance of flowers and citrus to help improve their image."
posted by dbarefoot at 3:26 PM PST - 21 comments

"Pray for the Hartzler family. Their youngest has left the church and no longer believes that Christ died for her sins. She buys clothes at the mall. Tongue pierced, nose as well. Her shirt shows her belly where a ring of gold sprouts. We pray she will remember that her Lord's side was pierced, that His crown held no gold, only the dried blood of His brow."

Shamash thinks the prayer request in this poem might be written for her. Despite her start in a Mennonite family, she is now an "international traveller living and teaching in Asia."
posted by The Light Fantastic at 2:51 PM PST - 21 comments

Good and bad hair. Whether you're dark or you're fair, the subject of hair is a delicate one for an African-American. There are strong opinions about it and curiosity abounds. However, the desire for "good hair" makes women vulnerable to dangerous products that the FDA discourages (and a fellow mefite has recommended for clothing repair). Despite the apparent success of the "Black is Beautiful" mantra these products remain popular, and their makers specifically target the youth market. One brand markets a "texture softener" to "concerned" parents [PDF] and directly to children [Flash]. Just make sure you "Follow directions carefully to avoid skin and scalp burns, hair loss and eye injury" [PDF]. This torturous relationship with hair (and skin!) is not new. It's often called colorism and is a mjor motivator for caustic coiffure. Fortunately, a more "naptural" approach is still available for those who are not their hair.
posted by eisbaer at 1:59 PM PST - 27 comments

RAICH V GONZALES (.pdf) : The Ninth Circuit hold that even if a physician attests that medicinal marijuana (within a State that allows such use) is what keeps a patient alive the patient can be Federally prosecuted on drug charges. (news story)
posted by edgeways at 1:33 PM PST - 72 comments

When flowers won't cut it. Do you know someone who’s had an abortion? Are you having trouble knowing what to say? Do you want to let them know you care? Send them an e-card.
posted by John of Michigan at 1:25 PM PST - 32 comments

The 50 (Greatest/Worst) Local TV Commercials (That Could Be Found On YouTube). A pretty good collection of weird, awful, hilarious, and just plain WTF local commercials.
posted by Melinika at 12:57 PM PST - 50 comments


Language in Common thinks about quitting[pdf]. Or starting a new job at your old job[pdf]. Or becoming a better lover[pdf]. At work. And they notice that others are thinking too.
posted by mendel at 12:30 PM PST - 2 comments

Gruesomestein's Monsters -- Six new cartoons done in the classic style, posted to YouTube by the genyouwine copyright holder, featuring monsters and ghoulies. For instance, how does a reformed no-longer-wicked witch keep the neighborhood kids from eating her gingerbread house?
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 11:41 AM PST - 12 comments

Florida's Barefoot Mailmen traveled 68-mile routes between Palm Beach and Miami in the late 1800s. Walking 40 miles (barefoot) and rowing 28 miles over the course of three days each way, these letter carriers brought efficiency to a postal route that previously required that "a letter from Palm Beach to Miami begin its trip at the lighthouse community of Jupiter, 22 miles north, then by an Indian River steamboat to the rail head at Titusville. By train it continued to New York's port and from there by steamer to Havana. From Cuba, a trading schooner took the letter to Miami. It took a voyage of 3,000 miles and a period of six weeks to two months for a letter to arrive in Miami." Ed Hamilton, who disappeared in the course of duty (and whose mysterious death may have been engineered by moving his rowboat out of reach in alligator-infested waters), is honored with a bronze statue in Hillsboro Beach.
posted by occhiblu at 11:40 AM PST - 6 comments

A bizarre skin condition. "A friend of mine has a relative who is a missionary in Eastern Europe. He recently shared photographs and the story of a man he is caring for, who has an extremely bizarre skin condition. The man has keratin-like matter growing out of the skin on hands and feet, which started when he was young, and very slowly continues to spread and grow..." (warning, gross pictures)
posted by empath at 10:57 AM PST - 106 comments

" No matter what happens now the Islamists will have beaten both of the superpowers -- first the Soviet Union in Afghanistan, and now the United States in the heart of Islam. The impact of that in Islamic civilization is going to be enormous. We have made bin Laden a prophet: His organizing concept for Al Qaeda was "The Russians are a lot tougher than the Americans. If we can beat the Russians, then we can eventually beat the Americans." "

Rolling Stone assembles a panel of military and history experts on the state, and future, of Iraq.
posted by four panels at 9:51 AM PST - 113 comments

Ever get the giggles at the most inappropriate time? It will never compare with the day this Dutch interviewer spoke to a man who tragically lost his testicles following a surgical error.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 9:28 AM PST - 39 comments

Rock 'n Roll Disciples [qt] (also known as Mondo Elvis and The Cult That Is Elvis) is a 30-minute 1984 indie documentary about Elvis worshippers.
Artie Mentz, professional Elvis impersonator, tells of how Elvis' death has altered his experience as an impersonator. "Now it's sort of like being a duplicate without an original." He also discusses his five year old son following in his footsteps. Artie's wife Ellie is obviously supportive of Artie's profession, despite financial hardships. Judy and Jenny Caroll, teenage identical twins, on their relationships with boys: "If they say anything against God or Elvis, they get thrown out on their ass." They reveal their belief that Elvis is their father. Frankie "Buttons" Horrocks tells us that her husband left her because of "excessive devotion to Elvis."
Poignant and hilarious. Also available on YouTube in three segment: 1,2,3.
posted by Armitage Shanks at 9:05 AM PST - 7 comments


Political Profiling run amok . Right on the tails of the resignation of Kyle Sampson, former chief of staff of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales comes a press conference where he accepts, but does not take, responsibility. All this will come as no surprise to the people who read this report that states that the offices of the U.S. Attorneys across the nation investigate seven times as many Democratic officials as they investigate Republican officials, a number that exceeds even the racial profiling of African Americans in traffic stops.
posted by DreamerFi at 8:31 AM PST - 29 comments

My Jewish Birthday is better than yours. On my birthday, the Hasidic movement was founded, the first Chabad rabbi was brought into the world, and the Baal Shem Tov was born. So, how cool is your Jewish birthday?
posted by parmanparman at 8:22 AM PST - 39 comments

Sherlock Holmes and the Murder of Lord Waterbrook. Excellent new Russian animation (well, kinda new, anyway). Here's part 2.
posted by jbickers at 5:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Celebrate π. Sing about π. Wear π. Learn the digits of π. Watch the wonder of π. Be vexed by the implications of π. Get slightly embarrassed for π. Give all your love to π. Happy Pi Day. Nerds rule!
posted by moonbird at 5:22 AM PST - 57 comments

Ever considered buying or starting a franchised restaurant? Right now, Quiznos might be best avoided...... (You might also avoid the franchises sold by a company called Raving Brands.)
posted by metasonix at 3:03 AM PST - 80 comments

"The Man Who Wrote Frankenstein" is a shortly forthcoming book by gay activist and scholar John Lauritsen which claims that Percy Bysshe Shelley, not his wife Mary wrote the famous novel. Camille Paglia has read an advance copy, and she seems to have liked it. (It's discussed on the fourth page of her column.)
posted by Trochanter at 2:44 AM PST - 85 comments

Will Wright Keynote at SXSW Will Wright shares his thoughts about the difficulty of telling stories in games, player-driven stories and some of his favorite games and books. During the demo, he apparently also showed sneaks of "An Inconvenient Truth - The Game". Okay I was kidding about that, but there was apparently a part in the demo where he showed creating a global warming disaster scenario. For those of you who like your keynotes with timestamps, Joystiq has a live-blogged version. No bootleg video or photos of the SXSW demo are out yet, so for now this video [Flash] taken during GDC will have to tide us over. [via].
posted by your mildly obsessive average geek at 12:33 AM PST - 21 comments

"I want to make a point!" said Brenda Hughes after she chewed on some boric acid she'd picked up from the ground. The Savannah, Georgia woman was arrested earlier for throwing boric acid on her black neighbors in what police call a hate crime. She and her t-shirt agree that she didn't do it. So far they seem to be the only ones, though.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:11 AM PST - 44 comments

Was I a good American in the time of George Bush? "Before the current administration, it had always been easy to condemn the "good Germans" who did nothing while Jews, Gypsies and others were rounded up for extermination." Uh, is this just a little over the top?
posted by KokuRyu at 12:08 AM PST - 102 comments

March 13

Brenda Dickson , soap opera actress, asks politely for a divorce, but is "put out on the street " by the "cowboys in mediation." Follow the exploits of this postergirl for class rage through her own press releases, here, here, and here (What It Was Like In Prison).
posted by maryh at 11:38 PM PST - 13 comments

How could you make the TARDIS even cooler? First, strip away the whole "bigger on the inside than the out" part, and second, get rid of the ability to travel in space & time. Finally, add the ability to play every arcade videogame ever invented.
posted by jonson at 11:28 PM PST - 17 comments


The Camel Toe Report [some onsite ads NSFW, certainly questionable at best] is dedicated to documenting camel toe sightings in the wild. Rate My Camel Toe goes one step beyond, offering viewers the opportunity to weigh in on the "best" and "worst" camel toes. Even celebrities get camel toe from time to time.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:26 PM PST - 72 comments

Giant snails are parasite carriers, agricultural pests, good pets and totally delicious and nutritious! What more could you ask for in a slowly invading slimy overlord? Just be sure to protect your brains.
posted by hindmost at 7:44 PM PST - 31 comments

A review of The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom, episode 1. BBC very recently aired the first episode of three by Adam Curtis , the author of The Power of Nightmares [prev] and The Century of Self. As far as I understood, the author advances that some attempts to implement "sustainable freedom" in our world may be founded on a politically-unarguable, oversimplifying and sometimes paranoid assumption that people almost constantly behave in a selfish way ; we may be suffering the undesiderable consequences of forcing a model to fit one assumption , actually reducing our freedom.
posted by elpapacito at 5:12 PM PST - 35 comments

Photographer George Lange compiled his favorite work from 2006 in a mesmerizing slide-show, well-worth a few minutes of your time.
posted by jtajta at 4:33 PM PST - 35 comments

Hi-res food scans (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, via)
posted by slogger at 4:11 PM PST - 13 comments

Living With a Dying Baby. "Families can choreograph their child’s very brief life with their family . . . Sometimes they may have a matter of minutes, so they decide beforehand who can hold the baby, who will cut the umbilical cord, who will hold the baby when you know he is going to die."
posted by brain_drain at 3:29 PM PST - 66 comments

2 July, 1958 - 13 March 2007. The Stardust Hotel/Casino was reduced to dust (youtube) at 2:30 am this morning. Initially opened in 1958 as the first low-budget property on the strip (rooms cost $6 a night), it (and the Westward Ho nearby) has been demolished to make room for a 5,300 room $4B ultra-luxury resort named Echelon, currently the second most expensive property development in Nevada (behind Project City Center down the road). One of the few remaining remnants of old Vegas, it was mob-owned/operated until at least 1984 (when the gaming commission levied a $3M fine for skimming), and is probably best known as the setting for the mostly nonfiction book/movie Casino. Over the years, it could lay claim to having the largest casino, the longest pool, the most rooms (twice), the largest neon sign, the only drive-in theater, the largest fine ever levied by the gaming commission, and the most consecutive live performances by Wayne Newton. It was also one of the last properties on the strip to use the more expensive metal-centered gaming chips. Arrivederci.
posted by toxic at 2:43 PM PST - 39 comments

The Bookseller's Story, Ending Much Too Soon. Anthony Shadid of the Washington Post writes about Mohammed Hayawi, "a bald bear of a man," who ran the Renaissance Bookstore on "Baghdad's storied Mutanabi Street." Back in 2005, Phillip Robertson wrote a Salon article about Al Mutanabbi Street, "Baghdad's legendary literary cafe, the Shabandar, " and Hajji Qais Anni's stationery store: "Hajji Qais had been on Al Mutanabbi street for 10 years and the vendors all knew him... He wore a beard and was also known as a devout Sunni who had no problem hiring Shia workers or spending time with Christian colleagues." Both Hayawi and Hajji Qais were killed by bombs, the cafe has been gutted, and the street that "embodied a generation-old saying: Cairo writes, Beirut publishes, Baghdad reads" is no longer its old self. "When the Mongols sacked Baghdad in 1258, it was said that the Tigris River ran red one day, black another. The red came from the blood of nameless victims, massacred by ferocious horsemen. The black came from the ink of countless books from libraries and universities. Last Monday, the bomb on Mutanabi Street detonated at 11:40 a.m. The pavement was smeared with blood. Fires that ensued sent up columns of dark smoke, fed by the plethora of paper." Two views of a part of Baghdad that doesn't make the news much.
posted by languagehat at 2:14 PM PST - 42 comments

Have you ever wondered what a solar eclipse would look like from space? The STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) has just sent back its view (awe-inspiring video included). It has also sent back some gorgeous pictures of our sun (and the McNaught Comet). For more media, check out the other galleries (including some 3D images). For more about the project, see NASA's STEREO homepage. Be sure to also stop by the Johns Hopkins University STEREO Page, where you can download a mission guide (pdf), view animations, watch a video of the launch, or even make your own papercraft STEREO model (pdf). You can also learn more in six minute segments with their series of short educational videos.
posted by wander at 2:12 PM PST - 15 comments

Terribly Exciting Interesting article from Ben Stein, regarding business, the economy, and the American middle class. and just when I thought I figured him out..
posted by ShawnString at 1:50 PM PST - 67 comments


Why Do You Stay Up So Late? An interactive, illustrated poem. [note: sound and flash animation]... From the wonderful Born Magazine, "an experimental venue marrying literary arts and interactive media." A previous project from Born Magazine was featured on Metafilter in 2004.
posted by amyms at 12:46 PM PST - 6 comments

Beatboxing in France? Who knew? (warning: lots of YouTube coming up.) The Art of Noise had their Beat Box (and live) . It's all good and well but maybe this beatbox is just a bit more interesting. There's even a very well documented history behind it. The Fat Boys did it, Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh did it and we've already seen Super Mario Beatboxed with a flute. Roxorloops takes another turn. And even more French beatboxing.
posted by horseblind at 11:58 AM PST - 21 comments


London calling to the faraway towns. James Harding of the London Times thinks that London is fast eclipsing New York as the world's favourite city. At least for business. He's only echoing earlier comment, but is he right? It’s hard to say which personality, New Yorker or Londoner, is preferable — the ballsy versus the stoic, the gruff versus the curmudgeonly, the sharp-tongued versus the quick-witted. But the real difference between the two is this: New Yorkers come from the five boroughs; Londoners from the five continents. They are Poles, Pakistanis, Brazilians, Americans, Nigerians and more. There are, it is said, 300 languages spoken in London.
posted by Duug at 7:48 AM PST - 230 comments

A war on alcohol in the US Military. This is supposed to be a dry war.
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 7:45 AM PST - 31 comments

If you have a *.edu email address, you can now access the normally for-fee New York Times TimesSelect service for free, which gets you access to archived articles and special content.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:42 AM PST - 52 comments

Make My Movie Online Be A Producer Help me raise the money to produce My Movie! For a minimal donation of only $2, YOU can receive a Producer`s Credit (PC) in the end credits of my film! Not only will you receive a credit, in exchange for your donation, you can also have a vote in some of the decisions such as casting, crewing and storyline! AND, not only that, but you also will have the opportunity to participate in the PROFITS of the film when we distribute the film.
posted by pt68 at 7:39 AM PST - 23 comments

Moderate this! Love food? Love kvetching about how moderators suck? Here's a look inside what it takes to moderate a hugely popular site (Chowhound.com) and to have to explain to people over and over that you are not in fact, evil.
posted by spicynuts at 6:49 AM PST - 23 comments

MMA star Evan Tanner has a new vision; one that still involves fighting, but on a completely different level.
posted by the cuban at 6:29 AM PST - 5 comments

Learning to scream safely as a metal, hardcore or screamo vocalist can "take approximately a year", apparently. Handy tips offered here include "practice screaming into a pillow", and "scream along with music, especially songs in which screaming is already taking place." Bizarrely comprehensive, and probably useful, if you're into, uh, screaming.
posted by rhodri at 6:20 AM PST - 32 comments

The dismissals took place after President Bush told Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales in October that he had received complaints that some prosecutors had not energetically pursued voter-fraud investigations...
Sampson sent an e-mail to Miers in March 2005 that ranked all 93 U.S. attorneys. Strong performers "exhibited loyalty" to the administration; low performers were "weak U.S. attorneys who have been ineffectual managers and prosecutors, chafed against Administration initiatives, etc." A third group merited no opinion.
White House Said to Prompt Firing of Prosecutors (NYTimes) - Firings Had Genesis in White House (WashPost) [via]
posted by empath at 6:01 AM PST - 105 comments

Hearing Voices is the largest collective of independent radio producers this side of the semi-planet Pluto. Take a look at the specials or maybe some of the slideshows. Or just browse by producer (maybe Scott Carrier?), or subject (perhaps comedy or science or maybe just Rock!).
posted by Happy Dave at 5:20 AM PST - 8 comments

Ahmadinejad is no Hitler (Los Angeles Times) If you think Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad makes outlandish comments, consider what Mao Tse-tung said to a visiting head of state in 1954: "If someone else can drop an atomic bomb, then I can too. The death of 10 or 20 million people is nothing to be afraid of."

Nonetheless, 15 years later, a nuclear-armed China was not only contained by the world, it opted for normalization of relations with its archenemy, the United States. Today, it is fashionable to equate Ahmadinejad with Hitler, yet the lesson of the 20th century is that rash leaders can, in fact, be deterred. And Iran's president will prove no exception.
posted by hoder at 4:31 AM PST - 77 comments

About a week ago a man walked into a high security vault in Antwerp during normal business hours, loaded up with 24 kilograms of diamonds, and walked out with them. He wasn't named "Carlos Hector Flomenbaum". Police have no idea who he is or where he is, and a $2 million reward has been offered for tips on his whereabouts. Anyone seen Robert Wagner around recently?
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 12:55 AM PST - 44 comments

So Much for Privacy (Part II) In another Sunshine Week "exposé" columnist Christian Trebjal of the Roanoke (Va.) Times decided that everyone needed to know the full names and addresses of every Concealed Handgun Permit holder in Virginia. So he got a list from the VA state police and had the newspaper put it in a handy searchable database. In the ensuing blog post regarding the column and database comments quickly got heated and comments were closed for several hours for unknown and unstated reasons (though perhaps due to the publication of Trebjal's home address). Of course, Virginian CHP holders were completely and wholly unamused. Following the outcry, the newspaper has removed the database, with a self-serving statement about concern for public safety but there was no concern for public safety guiding their actions before the objections. Overall, a question is raised: if Sunshine Week is supposed to be about open government why are newspapers aggregating and publishing information about private citizens at all?
posted by Dreama at 12:36 AM PST - 46 comments

March 12

New Yorker 2.0 Conde Naste has finally shelled out the beans to create a truly Web 2.0 version of the New Yorker...just as the term Web 2.0 is beginning to get on everyone's nerves. RSS feeds, embedded Flash video, and lots of clean white space.
posted by KokuRyu at 11:49 PM PST - 30 comments

The idea of a single, bi-national state is not new. Its appeal lies in its attempt to provide an equitable and inclusive solution to the struggle of two peoples for the same piece of land. It was first suggested in the 1920s by Zionist leftwing intellectuals led by philosopher Martin Buber, Judah Magnes... and Haïm Kalvarisky... Underlying their Zionism was a quest for a Jewish renaissance, both cultural and spiritual, with a determination to avoid injustice in its achievement. It was essential to found a new nation, although not necessarily a separate Jewish state and certainly not at the expense of the existing population.
Time for a bi-national state
See also B'Tselem's Map of Jewish Settlements In The West Bank
posted by y2karl at 10:59 PM PST - 39 comments

A woman escaped injury when her car crashed through a fence and into a swimming pool on February 24, 2007 in Woodland Hills. (flickr. Via). Not the first time it happened either
posted by growabrain at 10:37 PM PST - 34 comments

"I am not a great singer and I am not a great dancer, but I am a great actress, and nobody ever let me except Preston Sturges. He believed in me."

Rest in Peace, Betty Hutton.
posted by miss lynnster at 9:52 PM PST - 17 comments

The giant spiraling hole in the ground near Mirny, Russia in Siberia is perhaps the world's largest open pit diamond mine. More giant holes.
posted by Burhanistan at 8:03 PM PST - 48 comments

Bangkok artist Chris Coles has been called Thailand's Toulouse Lautrec. His neon colored potraits capture Bangkok's underside in a way that cuts right to the center of it's seamy heart. He even catches the city's dogs. The Bangkok Noir movement includes not only painting but literature also.
posted by Xurando at 6:37 PM PST - 11 comments

Duclod man uncovered. Sarah Aswell uncovers but does not name the author of bizarre letters. "As early as 1992, students at Grinnell College, a small liberal arts school in Iowa, began receiving strange, anonymous letters in the mail. The letters contained homemade greeting cards with crudely drawn pictures—men crawling on the ground, toilets and trash cans, twin closet doors—and jokes that didn’t make any sense." Previously on Metafilter, plus this blip.
posted by Mo Nickels at 5:51 PM PST - 156 comments

You may have heard of Twitter, a social networking utility to let your friends know online or by SMS what you're doing right now. Well, now even fault lines can do it, thanks to some enterprising developers. Friend one of these guys to get San Francisco quake info by text message from the USGS.
posted by SuperNova at 5:15 PM PST - 24 comments

RIP Trainwrecks.net. A website devoted to making fun of bloggers and forum posters who reveal a little bit too much TMI went dark in January after sustained attack by another site called Heaven Nose. After it was gone many of its readers fled to new site called The Insult. The Insult went dark today in a similar fashion. Where does free speech end and cyber-bullying begin?
posted by humanfont at 11:47 AM PST - 68 comments

Newsfilter: Israel has recalled its ambassador to El Salvador after he was found drunk and naked apart from bondage gear. Reports say he was able to identify himself to police only after a rubber ball had been removed from his mouth. Oy! More here. This isn't the first time an Israeli ambassador has gotten in trouble, either. Previously on Metafilter: The Swedish Art Incident
posted by zarq at 11:40 AM PST - 67 comments

So Much for Privacy The Columbus, Ohio, Dispatch, has been asking for, and receiving, access to school databases that include such information as children's names, telephone numbers, ages, birth dates, addresses, grade levels and assigned schools. No one seemed concerned until Chris Valentine, president of the Dublin school district board of education, sent e-mails home to parents. The Dublin News wrote about it; the Dispatch editor Benjamin Marrison defended the request this way: "How ironic that during Sunshine Week, an annual reminder of Americans' rights to public records, controversy swirls in Dublin over the release of such records." And Doug Clifton, former editor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, weighed in.
posted by etaoin at 11:39 AM PST - 22 comments

Halliburton Moves Corporate Headquarters to Dubai, UAE. Oil services giant Halliburton, parent company of soon to be spun off KBR, and recipient of many no-bid government contracts, is moving its corporate headquarters to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Meanwhile, the US and the UAE are working on a free trade agreement. The UAE and China are the two largest exporters to Iran, and some speculate that the purpose of the move is to open up Iran as a legitimate market for Halliburton, because as a US firm its acknowledged trade with Iran is of questionable legality. Among the implications of this corporate move is that the US military will now be heavily dependent on a contractor that is a foreign company.
posted by Pastabagel at 11:23 AM PST - 76 comments

The partial veto , enshrined in the Wisconsin Constitution since 1930, gives the governor the power to veto only a portion of a bill passed by the legislature. Since then, governors, both Republican and Democratic, have gotten increasingly creative about its application -- vetoing the word "not" to reverse the meaning of a bill, vetoing digits out of numbers to reduce appropriations, even vetoing individual letters from words in order to create new text, Humument-style. (This last power, the so-called "Vanna White" veto, was removed by Constitutional amendment in 1990.) Another attempt to strip the governor of the partial veto has just failed. Doesn't it sound like fun to be governor of Wisconsin? Try it yourself.
posted by escabeche at 11:22 AM PST - 33 comments

At a panel last weekend a major plot point was revealed about the NBC show Heroes (it goes without saying - contains spoilers). To many comic book readers this had more than a familiar similarity to the ending of the widely revered comic book series Watchmen. Stories and themes are repeated throughout history in many mediums, but when is it a unique take, when is it a a homage and when is it theft? And when the medium that is lifted from is a less respected one such as comic books, does that make it more palatable?
posted by dig_duggler at 11:08 AM PST - 63 comments

I'm so glad I'M not an Alpha. Economists Mark Aguiar and Erik Hurst have published a study (pdf) saying that Americans have more leisure time now than they did in 1965. And that most of these gains have gone to the poor.
posted by Trochanter at 10:29 AM PST - 65 comments

Every time you hear that people filming themselves doing stupid, dangerous things is a recent trend, consider Austrian tailor Franz Reichelt. He invented a combination overcoat/parachute, and on February 4, 1912 decided to test it himself by jumping off the Eiffel Tower. It didn't work--and there's video.
posted by gottabefunky at 10:25 AM PST - 38 comments

Fishing Hurts is a new website from PETA aimed at getting people to stop fishing. No one would consider doing to a dog what some so casually do to fish—trick them into impaling themselves in the mouth and pull them into an environment where they can't breathe. But the fact is—fish feel pain just as all animals do. When it comes to feelings, a child is a dog is a fish.
posted by billysumday at 10:07 AM PST - 207 comments

Peter Bjorn and John are one of the most talked-about acts appearing at SXSW later this week. They are a Swedish band best known for their breakout single "Young Folks" (video | mp3 | live on Conan | acoustic), which was on numerous best of 2006 lists. Their album and new singles have been generally acclaimed. The band does, however, have its detractors.
posted by oldleada at 9:24 AM PST - 26 comments

On the occasion of her induction into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame, punk poet and musician Patti Smith (no, not this Patti Smith) offers eloquent reflections on the benediction she received from her late husband Fred "Sonic" Smith of MC5, the future of rebellion, and her own question: " Am I a worthy recipient?." Yes, Patti, you are. Some sound and video...
posted by twsf at 9:08 AM PST - 51 comments

The Rare Book Room presents about 400 of the world's greatest books from a variety of libraries in high resolution format. For some samples, check out: Apianus (Astronomicum Caesareum); Blake (Songs of Innocence and Experience); Braccelli (Bizzarie di Varie Figure); Catesby (The Natural History of Carolina...); Dürer (De Symmetria...); Colonna (Hypnerotomachia Poliphili). And on and on. The interface is great (use arrow far left at top for larger page image) but there's a slight browser resize in FFox. A couple of author names are placeholders for future uploads it seems. [via]
posted by peacay at 8:21 AM PST - 25 comments

Nerve pulses are sound pulses. The membrane of the nerve is composed of lipids, a material that is similar to olive oil. This material can change its state from liquid to solid with temperature. Molecules that dissolve in membranes can lower the freezing point of membranes. The scientists found that the nerve membrane has a freezing point, which is precisely suited to the propagation of these concentrated sound pulses. Their theoretical calculations lead them to the same conclusion: Nerve pulses are sound pulses. This comes from their work on the Thermodynamics of General Anesthesia (pdf). (via Stereophile?)
posted by caddis at 7:10 AM PST - 45 comments

In 1997, a geeky little boy from New Mexico became one of the first major web celebrities when he reached out to meet his future girlfriend. He talks about the impact that this unexpected celebrity had on his life. Apparently, after years of eschewing the web, he's all grown up and he's looking for "bois" on MySpace (sound is NSFW). (via szanalmas, possibly NSFW).
posted by madamjujujive at 6:54 AM PST - 45 comments

The World Ice Art Championships are being held in Fairbanks, Alaska this week. If you can't be there to see this year's sculptures, you can view last year's winners in both the single block and the multi-block divisions. You can also see many stunning entries from previous years.
posted by cubby at 5:57 AM PST - 15 comments

China is taking steps to curb Internet addiction. This isn't the first time they have moved to regulate use. Are you addicted?
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 5:16 AM PST - 26 comments

The 2007 cricket world cup has just started , meet the mascot, take place in the official fantasy league, follow the beebs coverage and watch the live scorecard updates. New to cricket? - read up on the history and learn the rules
posted by scodger at 2:33 AM PST - 26 comments

Georgette Heyer is my favourite novelist - she writes what have been classified as 'historical romances' by the fodder market that inspired this post but is in fact an observant writer of social mores and customs on par with any of the Austens. Her drawing room farces, her subtle humour and the amusing pranks that the characters play or the 'scrapes' that they get into, all the while ending up in love - never talked about directly but always indirectly implied, as per the customs of the late 18th century whence her novels are set, make her one of the most outstanding authors [yet sadly misclassified] of the past century. Don't miss Devil's Cub or These Old Shades...
posted by infini at 1:32 AM PST - 17 comments

A very brief history of conservatories, and another. And little more on orangeries.
More than just a place to keep plants warm, conservatories peaked in popularity (and size) in the second half of the 19th century. They popped up all over Europe, wherever elites wanted to show off their 'exotic' plunders. Made from more than a million feet of glass, the Crystal Palace may have been the awesomest of them all: it was initially built to showcase the wonders of Victorian England, and its exhibits included the latest technological innovations, the largest organ in the world, a circus, objects from Australia, India, and other colonial lands, along with the many tropical plant species we usually associate with big glass buildings. The whole thing was later moved to South London and eventually housed a television station and became associated with a well-known football club. Finally, it burned to the ground in 1936. Coincidentally, Munich's copycat, the Glaspalast was destroyed by arson as well. (But each year's catalog of exhibits has been digitized!) Conservatories flourish in North America as well. San Francisco's Conservatory of Flowers was assembled from a kit, survived the '06 earthquake, but had to be rebuilt after successive explosions, fires, rotten wood, and a massive wind-storm. (Don't miss their cooking tips, but watch out – their site may be NSFW.) And although they certainly aren't as popular as they used to be, contemporary conservatories can be found. Before you leave the world of glass houses, take a quick look at some photos of Detroit's hidden treasure.
posted by serazin at 12:08 AM PST - 14 comments

March 11

Images of Aggregation "These works come from a study of organic natural forms and their relationship to simple mathematical rules." See videos, and also, Images of Flow. [via]
posted by dhruva at 10:39 PM PST - 9 comments

An option to a new $200K stick home: A used multimillion dollar aerospace quality home.
posted by owhydididoit at 9:21 PM PST - 38 comments

And now the video:
Little Roger and the Goosebumps - Stairway to Gilligan's Island
See also Little Roger and the Goosebumps - Gilligan Timeline
After 22 years, Led Zep have okayed the release of Little Roger and the Goosebumps' parody...
[via]
posted by y2karl at 9:08 PM PST - 13 comments

The Shorts In Motion site has content some may find interesting, including some short films by Guy Maddin (nsfw; wtf), Mark McKinney, Denis Villeneuve (one of my fave Canadian filmmakers), Ann Marie Fleming, Issabella Rossellini and some cute quizzes/extras. (Flash, and I haven't viewed everything so consider it nsfw).
posted by dobbs at 9:03 PM PST - 4 comments

Weird boom car/subwoofer ads and more of the same. Another happy noise hater. NoiseOff's myth of loud m/c pipes is interesting. Ironically titled Hurt Report (pdf) about m/c safety. Previously, related with a dead link that seemed to be about Noise Awareness day, coming up in April, the significance of which is that people with hearing problems or different hearing issues are more troubled by noise than the average person. Obviously I 'm sympathetic to noise sufferers, since I am one, but I am not involved in any of the linked sites.
posted by Listener at 8:35 PM PST - 63 comments

To Have, Hold, and Cherish, Until Bedtime [NYT] reports on the "socological phenomenon" of married couples choosing separate sleeping arrangements, a follow-up of sorts to an earlier article on the pyschology of sleeping together. University of Minnesota professor Paul C. Rosenblatt has written an entire book on the subject of co-bedding, a first in the world of sleep studies.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 8:03 PM PST - 76 comments

Men get depression too. An excellent article about the hurdles men face in coming to terms with having the Black Dog. (Click "Print this" at the bottom for an easier to read one-page version; bonus links inside.)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:46 PM PST - 73 comments

Comedian Richard Jeni, 1957-2007. Even his website has gone dark.
posted by thanotopsis at 7:06 PM PST - 46 comments


The art of sugar: flowers, lace, birds, sculpture, cubes, gardens, construction site, houses, paintings, underwear. In Britain. In Mexico sugar skulls are created to celebrate the Day of the Dead. Amezaiku is a Japanese candy craft and wagashi the art of Japanese confection.
posted by nickyskye at 3:11 PM PST - 14 comments

Nothing To See Here A guide to "some of the world's lesser-signposted places to go - attractions that may not be all that attractive; coastal towns they forgot to close down; high streets that haven't been homogenised; oddities and one-offs."
posted by chrismear at 1:36 PM PST - 31 comments

Viral Marketing Suggestions. At one time, when YouTube was new, ordinary people filled it with interesting content. But only 3 years later, after television content producers have forced them to remove millions of copyrighted video clips, we are starting to see an even more insidious phenomenon: the posting of "phony" videos on YouTube, for marketing purposes. NBC has just been caught posting a bogus parody of their show "Heroes". Not to mention Agency.com's pathetic attempt to get an ad contract with Subway, lonelygirl15, and many more that have yet to be discovered. Best of all, you can now find how-to instructions on marketing websites showing how to use YouTube for viral marketing. People are starting to notice....yet it is becoming more and more commonplace. (And I won't even mention how many MySpace and Facebook pages are viral in nature.)
posted by metasonix at 1:18 PM PST - 36 comments

Crazy Eyes Dolphin vs. The Mad Cows, an animated short by Ian Stewart. Bum bum bum.
posted by Marit at 11:40 AM PST - 13 comments

Auto Erotica. Chris, 38, has a recognised psychological condition that makes him physically attracted to motors. (via)
posted by inconsequentialist at 11:12 AM PST - 72 comments

"Seeing those photos from the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, I decided I was looking at the perfect conflation of two constituents of Julia Kristeva's 'Abject': Horror and the Female. Every theater of war requires specific armory, and now America has produced a narrowly targeted new weapon, incorporating a kind of 'vagina dentata', designed to inflict maximum psychological damage in traditional societies." Russian/Dutch artist Bee Flowers has a new (NSFW) show at the Moscow Museum of Modern Art. See also Megastructure, Soviet Sublime, and much more.
posted by unSane at 7:08 AM PST - 31 comments

A three part biography of skateboarder Rodney Mullen. He invented more than 30 tricks, including the flatground ollie, the kickflip, and the heelflip. Despite being voted the most legendary "extreme sports" athlete of all time, the only extreme thing about him is his reclusive, geeky, devotion to practice.
posted by roofus at 6:56 AM PST - 27 comments

Neurolaw - The Brain on the Stand
posted by Gyan at 6:06 AM PST - 8 comments

In South Korea the suicide rate is increasing. In recent years, it has also seen spikes in certain demographics in China, Japan, and India
posted by Gnostic Novelist at 4:32 AM PST - 25 comments

March 10

Hear the new Wilco album on March 11. 7am - 7pm PST. Get the first track here (zipped mp3).
posted by jimmythefish at 11:33 PM PST - 55 comments

All old things become new again. Traditional American music, such as Del McCoury and Doc Watson being explored and reinvented by new artists. Gillian Welch and Old Crow Medicine Show , Chatham County Line- Route 23 , and The Be Good Tanyas - The Littlest Birds. Just to name a few. [all youtube]
posted by nola at 10:22 PM PST - 16 comments

Big Brother State. Nice animation about life in a surveillance society. [Via BB.]
posted by homunculus at 9:20 PM PST - 49 comments

Message In A Bottle. For ten years, Stuart Conway, who calls himself a "postman for emotions," has been providing a unique service. He "mails" other people's messages, collected via his website, by placing them in bottles and tossing them into the waters off Brighton Pier on the south coast of England. He's sent over 4000 missives so far, and helped launch other message-in-a-bottle services all over the world. Now his town council wants him to cease and desist. Via Nothing To Do With Arbroath.
posted by amyms at 8:57 PM PST - 22 comments

Mediocre Films consists of films which are... mediocre, hence the name. Night of the Zombie. Batty Bat-Bat. Gorgeous Tiny Chicken Machine Show. Granted, it's not LG15 but I think that's what I like about it most. These short subject films are made by some guy named Greg, with help from other people whom you may have never heard of before. Occasionally they also feature a guy named Adam whom you might recognize but you may not be able to recall from where. It's funny. Well. I liked it. My girlfriend didn't. She said they were mediocre; to which I said, "exactly!" Sheesh. Women.
posted by ZachsMind at 8:03 PM PST - 10 comments

The Codpiece [coral cache] - An illustrated review of what is quite possibly one of the worst comic books of all time. (Not safe for anyone.)
posted by loquacious at 4:50 PM PST - 47 comments

These are all Ween cover bands: Fat Lenny, Weener, Peen, Big Profile's Ween Tribute. Which begs the question: Wasn't one already too many?
posted by eperker at 3:24 PM PST - 55 comments

His lips brushed her cheek as he let more of the weight of his arm and hand press against her torso. He spoke softly, “And this evening’s lead story, "No bombings, no robberies, no car accidents, no wars. Just {YOUR NAME HERE} and {YOUR S.O.'s NAME HERE} making love in a hammock on the Outer Banks."

Yep, for $50-120, you and the love of your life can have your very own customized romance novel. May the bosom-heaving and bodice ripping ensue.
posted by miss lynnster at 12:51 PM PST - 46 comments

There is a bear in the woods. Some people say he is adorabley blotto. Some people say he is a ponderous Pooh. Still others say he is as cute as a bug's bottom. Since nobody really knows for sure, isn't smart to be smarter than the average bear? If there is a bear? YouTubery Ahoy
posted by maryh at 12:32 PM PST - 17 comments

Nudes! Nudes! Nudes! and more Nudes! Naturism is alive and well (and supporting the sunblock conspiracy).
posted by dmd at 12:31 PM PST - 99 comments

Wet cats. Cats in hats. Random kittens. Piano cat. Silly cats. Lucky cat. 26 toed cat. Jumping monastery cats.
posted by nickyskye at 10:04 AM PST - 50 comments

I am sullied -- no more. Colonel Ted Westhusing was a soldier's soldier -- a multilingual West Point graduate, tough as nails, who was committed to the ancient Greek warrior's ideal of ἀρετή ("arete," excellence). He volunteered to go to Iraq, where he was commanded by another outstanding rising-star officer, counterinsurgency expert David Petraeus. (Westhusing's widow, Michelle, recalls that her husband thought his country was doing "a great thing" there.) After working with one of the shadowy contractors the US has relied on to train Iraqi security forces, USIS, Westhusing became increasingly despondent. In May 2005, investigators say, he put a 9mm bullet in his brain after writing a note that said, "Reevaluate yourselves, cdrs [commanders]. You are not what you think you are and I know it." Westhusing died, as was previously discussed here, and his former "cdr" is now running the war. Lots of new information in this article from the Texas Observer.
posted by digaman at 8:27 AM PST - 114 comments

We, the observers: an-entirely-nother approach angle to 'intelligent' design? Robert Lanza, a researcher at Advanced Cell Technology and a professor at Wake Forest, thinks scientists need to privilege life in order to understand the universe (and everything :) by placing the observer at the center (or end?) of it all.
posted by kliuless at 7:53 AM PST - 35 comments

Music's New Gatekeeper - From their Silicon Valley cubicles, Apple staffers have become music's unlikely power brokers.
posted by nevercalm at 7:32 AM PST - 21 comments

Images of Iran. Includes pictures of art, landscapes, and architecture.
posted by BuddhaInABucket at 7:22 AM PST - 17 comments

Alain Connes has a blog. Terry Tao also has a blog. Two Fields medalists blog on open problems, their views on mathematics, and Tomb Raider. Timothy Gowers doesn't have a blog, but does have a compendium of informal essays on topics like Why is multiplication commutative? If you prefer pictures to words: Faces of Mathematics.
posted by escabeche at 6:23 AM PST - 15 comments

Contrived is the new original. via.
posted by signal at 6:20 AM PST - 38 comments

Welcome to the Rashtrapati Bhavan (inspired from):
posted by hadjiboy at 6:08 AM PST - 7 comments

Alive in Baghdad is a video blog that began when filmmaker Brian Conley visited Iraq in 2005. He has provided several local reporters with video equipment and training to produce weekly posts of first hand accounts from ordinary Iraqis, like this tour of two houses after American raids, or this interview with a Sadr City doctor.
posted by ScottMorris at 5:25 AM PST - 5 comments

March 9

...Historians teach that they are mostly descended from different peoples: the Irish from the Celts and the English from the Anglo-Saxons who invaded from northern Europe and drove the Celts to the country’s western and northern fringes. But geneticists who have tested DNA throughout the British Isles are edging toward a different conclusion. Many are struck by the overall genetic similarities, leading some to claim that both Britain and Ireland have been inhabited for thousands of years by a single people that have remained in the majority, with only minor additions from later invaders like Celts, Romans, Angles, Saxons, Vikings and Normans. The implication that the Irish, English, Scottish and Welsh have a great deal in common with each other, at least from the geneticist’s point of view, seems likely to please no one.
A United Kingdom? Maybe
See also Myths of British ancestry
In the words of one well known Basque cultural icon: HA Ha!
posted by y2karl at 11:59 PM PST - 40 comments

Raymond Scott dot com — you might not have heard of the man, this cartoon composer, inventor of electronic musical instruments and leader of the world's largest quintet, but his impact on modern music is hard to overstate [Realplayer, NPR]
posted by Kattullus at 11:23 PM PST - 17 comments

Three chords and four noble truths: on Philadelphia's legendary Buddhist hardcore band of the 1980s, Ruin.
posted by adamgreenfield at 9:11 PM PST - 16 comments

Hybrid solar lighting is here. Happier employees and spendier mall shoppers are on the horizon. HSL basics. Direct savings comes from reduced electrical demand during peak hours, reduced cooling costs of conventional lighting, and eliminating the heat and maintenance costs of skylights. Call for the price.
posted by Brian B. at 8:56 PM PST - 34 comments


Derrick Bostrom, former drummer for the Meat Puppets and curator of MeatPuppets.com has posted a collection of early Puppets vids on youtube, collected by the user dullsville. Of course, I've made a playlist. More great music available under dullsville's profile.
posted by Eideteker at 8:48 PM PST - 5 comments

Retiring psychology professor Philip G. Zimbardo, who ran the Stanford Prison Experiment, gave his final lecture at Stanford this week, criticizing the Bush administration and saying that senior government officials responsible for Abu Ghraib should be "tried for the crimes against humanity." [Via MindHacks.]
posted by homunculus at 8:34 PM PST - 38 comments

300 opened today. Slate's reviewer didn't like it -- "No one involved ... seems to have noticed that we're in the middle of an actual war. With actual Persians." Some people took him/her to task over it. Still others asked the director, "Is George Bush Leonidas, or Xerxes?" Obviously, the Frank Miller fanboys love it. And one of the guys from AintitCool says, "Just ass kicking that kicks ass that, while said ass is getting kicked, is kicking yet more ass that’s hitting someone’s balls with a hammer made of ice but the ice is frozen whiskey." But who knew the trailer's catch phrase "Then we shall fight in the shade" is actually lifted from Herodotus?
posted by frogan at 8:24 PM PST - 192 comments

Who is Chuck Klosterman? in case you've never heard of the author of Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs (among others - discussed here and here), you have now. [More Inside]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:18 PM PST - 29 comments

DEVPLL offers you tons of flash games to while away the hours. Try your hand at the logical games they offer like Hidden where your cursor disappears as you make your way through a simple maze or Paths 2 where a steady hand is your best asset.
posted by inconsequentialist at 5:55 PM PST - 2 comments

Brad Delp 1951-2007 Lead singer for the band Boston , dead at 55. "We've just lost the nicest guy in rock and roll." is all you will find at the band Boston's website
posted by lobstah at 5:10 PM PST - 72 comments

Johnny Thunders
posted by vronsky at 4:41 PM PST - 25 comments

Elf Defense. A man accused of a stealing underwear from a shop in a knifepoint raid believed he was a female elf at the time. He was found guilty. The man believed he was playing Shadowrun at the time.
posted by Joey Michaels at 4:11 PM PST - 36 comments

WHAT? No post about VIRB yet? Myspace meets AJAX and a sleek "2.0" design. Allows bands to upload albums instead of a measely 4 songs. Real purdy like y'all.
posted by Satapher at 4:02 PM PST - 58 comments

Jyrki Kasvi is a member of the Finnish parliament from the Uusimaa constituency. He represents the Green League and his campaign website can be viewed in English, Swedish, or Klingon.
posted by fandango_matt at 3:35 PM PST - 23 comments


Feline Reactions to Bearded Men: Cats do not like men with long beards, especially long dark beards. Cats are indifferent to men with shorter beards. Cats are confused and/or disturbed by men with beards that are incomplete (e.g., Bork) and to a lesser degree by men whose beards have missing parts (e.g., Crafts). via
posted by grateful at 1:41 PM PST - 32 comments

"What kind of schmuck would pay $500 to meet a bunch of gold diggers?" Radar covers/mocks a speed dating event in Manhattan.
posted by chunking express at 1:17 PM PST - 67 comments

Joseph Neumeyer's Dynamic Dioramas has tons of cool photos of dioramas with miniature soldiers and ships from many different historical eras.
posted by marxchivist at 9:05 AM PST - 17 comments

The Bookseller/Diagram Prize is a much sillier award than its name suggests. It is presented annually to the "Oddest Book Title of the Year". Past winners include (partial titles) "People Who Don't Know They're Dead", "Bombproof Your Horse", "The Big Book of Lesbian Horse Stories", and "Living with Crazy Buttocks" (a must-read for MetaFilter moderators). All past winners here. TheBookseller.com is currently polling readers for their favorites from this year's long-winded shortlist at the bottom of its frontpage. Current leader: "Tattooed Mountain Women and Spoon Boxes of Daghestan" (not available on Amazon!), followed by "The Stray Shopping Carts of Eastern North America: A Guide to Field Identification","How Green Were the Nazis" and the obviously controversial "Better Never To Have Been: The Harm of Coming Into Existence".
Remember, books purchased through these Amazon links benefit MetaFilter, not me.
posted by wendell at 9:04 AM PST - 43 comments

Win in China! A "reality" TV show in China where young would be entrepreneurs compete for a large pile of startup cash to actualize their business ideas. Not everyone is happy about the glorification of capitalism, of course, and one losing contestant may have committed suicide, but overall reaction in China to the show seems positive. Video clips here (also a full length article by the Atlantic if you have a paid subscription).
posted by Burhanistan at 8:32 AM PST - 5 comments

Artist Ya Ya Chou works in several materials, the most interesting being gummi bears. The Mommy, The Candelabras, and sculptures are nice, but the Bear Rug is not to be missed. The best piece is the Chandelier, which apparently is perfectly fine after two years.
posted by mathowie at 7:25 AM PST - 16 comments

"I've often been asked what when through my mind when I first realized that I had stumbled across the greatest accumulation of Golden Age comics ever discovered. Frankly, even after 25 years have gone by, it still gives me chills to think about staring at that huge closet stacked to the rafters with mint Golden Age comics. " In 1977, a 21 year old comic book dealer in Colorado named Chuck Rozanski got a phone call from a realtor who wanted to dispose of a "large" number of comic books in the basement of a house that was about to be sold. The owners of the house were eager to get rid of them, and Rozanski purchased the "greatest comic collection ever found" , consisting of over 18,000 mint condition Golden Age comic books collected by artist Edgar Church, for a bargain price (rumored to be as low as $1,800). Recently, just one comic book from the collection sold for $273,125. Rozanski used the proceeds to build Mile High Comics, now the largest comic book retailer in the industry. Amazing as the Mile High discovery was, Rozanski still believes that his "Mile High II" find was his best.
posted by banishedimmortal at 6:19 AM PST - 85 comments

They Won’t Know What Hit Them. How a network of gay political donors is stealthily fighting sexual discrimination and reshaping American politics.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 3:51 AM PST - 32 comments

Gingrich Had Affair During Clinton Probe. "There are times that I have fallen short of my own standards. There's certainly times when I've fallen short of God's standards." Thus Newt Gingrich 2008 Republican stealth candidate for U.S. president. Gingrich described by J. William Lauderback of the American Conservative Union as "the intellectual cornerstone of our modern conservative movement" has a closet filled with skeletons which should cause anyone to question his commitment to family values. (more inside)
posted by three blind mice at 1:54 AM PST - 263 comments

March 8

Bling h2o is the invention of Hollywood producer Kevin G. Boyd. It;s water in a frosted glass bottle with a cork and emblazoned with Swarovski crystals. At $24 a 750ml bottle, it's targeted at the super-luxury market. Is water from Tennessee really worth that much? Apparently, for some celebs, it is: "A lot of times when you have some water, people are like, 'You're drinking water?' Instead, you say, 'Naw man, I'm blinging." -- Jamie Foxx
posted by SansPoint at 10:41 PM PST - 113 comments

Montana Meth Project commercials. "The Meth Project is the largest advertiser in Montana, reaching 70-90 percent of teens three times a week. This is saturation-level advertising...The Montana Meth Project is a Montana-based anti-drug organization founded by billionaire Thomas Siebel." But are these ads effective in preventing teens from using meth, or are they just a symptom of the wider moral panic surrounding meth use? Pretty excellent commercials, though. More Metafilter meth missives here.
posted by KokuRyu at 9:28 PM PST - 99 comments

The 100 worst reviewed movies ever, according to Rotten Tomatoes. "We've got two Baby Geniuses and three Uwe Boll flicks. Heck, you know these movies must be bad if Catwoman ranks a lofty number 100..." Also, check out the 80 best-reviewed movies.
posted by blahblahblah at 9:14 PM PST - 71 comments

Welcome to the South Pole Telescope blog.
posted by geos at 8:35 PM PST - 7 comments


A handsome, though humble, little game for Flash Friday: Sprout. The clear winner, in my mind, in this game design competition. (Though the sequel to Gateway is as eerie as the first.)
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 7:04 PM PST - 28 comments

To Baldy Go: Thinking of shaving your head? Undergoing chemotherapy? Afraid you'll lose a bet? If you want to see what you'd look like bald, the friendly fellow at BaldlyGo will baldify your picture, free of charge, whether you're an average man, woman, teen or even a world leader. Here's the demo for the private service.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 4:31 PM PST - 51 comments

The dark ages of western Europe – nasty, brutish, and short -- did nevertheless produce technical innovations in metallurgy, agriculture, and, as identified in the Utrecht Psalter, a groundbreaking simple machine: the crank.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 4:15 PM PST - 22 comments


The FIRST ("For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology") robotics competition has recently begun it's 2007 competition season. The competition, which began and still enjoys it's greatest popularity in the United States, challenges high-school students and mentors to design and build a (teleoperated) robot to play a game in six weeks. Founded by Dean Kamen, of segway, IBOT, the first home dialysis machine, and clean drinking water fame founded the competition in 1988 to inspire students to enter the engineering profession. Every year a new challenge is put forth, and this year's game involves placing inner-tubes on a cylindrical rack in addition to lifting other team's robots. A sizeable community has sprung up around FIRST, with much attention paid to Dean Kamen's ideal of gracious professionalism which is like sportsmanship without the sports. The 2007 regional competitions provide teams an opportunity to show off their work. If you're interested in getting involved, or just watching the events, FIRST provides a handy Event Locator.
posted by martinX's bellbottoms at 2:40 PM PST - 14 comments

Is Your Baby Gay? Southern Baptist theologian Albert Mohler has come out to support stem cell research: If a biological basis [for homosexuality] is found, and if a prenatal test is then developed, and if a successful treatment to reverse the sexual orientation to heterosexual is ever developed, we would support its use as we should unapologetically support the use of any appropriate means to avoid sexual temptation and the inevitable effects of sin.
posted by parmanparman at 1:40 PM PST - 121 comments

Juan Catalan, 28, was arrested in the May 2003 murder of Martha Puebla, 16, outside her Sun Valley home, even though he told detectives that he was innocent and had been at a Dodgers game with his 6-year-old daughter at the time of the crime. Catalan's defense attorney, Todd Melnik, went through footage of crowd shots from the televised game between the Dodgers and the Atlanta Braves, but he did not find his client. Then he learned that Curb Your Enthusiasm had been shooting at the ballpark that day. Sure enough, there he was on the cutting room floor, eating a hotdog. Juan spent nearly five months in jail for a crime he did not commit — he filed a suit for police misconduct and today he was awarded $320,000. Catalan was not a fan of "Curb Your Enthusiasm" before his time in jail. "He is now," Casselman said. Well, duh.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:37 PM PST - 33 comments

More and more authors are turning to podcasting to find their audiences after being rejected by traditional book publishers, it seems. Interested in hearing some of their stories for free (or if you're feeling generous, a suggested donation of $9.99)? Check out PodioBooks, where there's a tonne of free literature just waiting to be downloaded to your iPod.
posted by Effigy2000 at 12:39 PM PST - 9 comments

Star Wars in 5 Seconds. The Empire Strikes Back. Return of the Jedi. Dozens more from this YouTube user, including Batman; The Lord of the Rings I, II, and III; Amadeus; The Passion; The Princess Bride; Titanic; The Big Lebowski; and my personal favorite, The Lion King.
"In 5 seconds" not to be taken literally. Some audio may be NSFW.
posted by Partial Law at 12:04 PM PST - 49 comments

The Philadelphia Phillies, the losingest professional sports franchise in american history, lost again today. Long time coach and member of the 1980 World Series winning team, John Vukovich, died today after a second bout with brain cancer. The Phillies have now lost both their heart and their soul (sorry Mets fans) to brain cancer.
posted by saladpants at 11:25 AM PST - 21 comments

What is Web 2.0? [PDF] The best description of Web 2.0 that I have read. The six big ideas... 1 Individual production and User Generated Content 2 Harness the power of the crowd 3 Data on an epic scale 4 Architecture of Participation 5 Network Effects 6 Openness
posted by bobbyelliott at 9:44 AM PST - 78 comments

Art on a napkin: Before ketchup art, before Esquire Napkin Fiction, there was the Mama's Royal Café (checks and credit cards are cheerfully not accepted) napkin decorating contest. Enter now, (or, maybe don't. I don't want anyone to hurt my chances here!)
posted by serazin at 9:14 AM PST - 7 comments

Filmiholic interviews Kal Penn. The interview begins with a discussion of his new film the Namesake, but covers a lot of interesting topics. There is an also an interview with Jhumpa Lahiri, who wrote the book the Namesake is based on.
posted by chunking express at 8:56 AM PST - 14 comments

OppoDepot.com is the Internet's only nonpartisan, collaborative Web 2.0 source for negative information about the 2008 presidential candidates. "Opposition research," aka "oppo research" is the black art of digging up dirt on your political enemies. OppoDepot promises to allow netizens to do the same thing, Web 2.0-style. They have helpfully given us starter oppo on all the candidates, even the obscure ones. Enjoy the negativity!
posted by TheWash at 8:38 AM PST - 42 comments

From the award-winning comic series ACTION PHILOSOPHERS! comes these biographies of the titans of thought! Thrill to the killer koans of Bam-Bam Bodhidharma! Shudder before the noble savagery of Terrible Thomas Jefferson! And enjoy (Or pick apart) tales of Crusher Carl Jung, Nasty Niccolo Machiavelli, Rowdy Rene Descartes, uh, Terribler Thomas Aquinas, The Pre-Socratics, and Gentleman John Stewart Mill!(Scroll down)
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 8:31 AM PST - 21 comments

Arkiva Tropika is a huge archive of tropical-themed ephemera. Browse restaurant and drink menus, postcards, photos, brochures and matchbooks. Hours and hours worth of retro tiki goodness.
posted by Otis at 7:35 AM PST - 9 comments

Who Delayed Roger Rabbit? Rich Drees lays bare the backroom bickering and production studio drama behind one of the 1980s' most successful comedies. For an encore, Drees reviews the unproduced script of Roger Rabbit II: Toon Platoon. Weep for what might have been.
posted by Faint of Butt at 7:25 AM PST - 52 comments

John Inman, RIP --better known as the campy stereotype Mr. Humphries on Are You Being Served? (a gay icon?)
posted by amberglow at 6:58 AM PST - 93 comments

Panties for peace Buy a panty, save the world.
posted by dov3 at 6:44 AM PST - 31 comments

Kinky Turtle Sex. This short 1:37 video [via YouTube] features two turtles engaged in a very strange form of foreplay before the eventual act of mating. If you listen closely toward the end, you can hear the male really enjoying himself.
posted by inconsequentialist at 6:03 AM PST - 39 comments

The private war of women soldiers. "Last year, Col. Janis Karpinski caused a stir by publicly reporting that in 2003, three female soldiers had died of dehydration in Iraq, which can get up to 126 degrees in the summer, because they refused to drink liquids late in the day. They were afraid of being raped by male soldiers if they walked to the latrines after dark."
posted by Sticherbeast at 4:31 AM PST - 187 comments

Barfield is Garfield with banality largely replaced by puerility. As such, it's a tad NSFW.
posted by Wolfdog at 4:24 AM PST - 39 comments

Calvin Klein is releasing a new fragrance for our "technosexual" generation: A typical line from the press materials for CK in2u goes like this: “She likes how he blogs, her texts turn him on. It’s intense. For right now.
posted by monaco at 1:50 AM PST - 65 comments

Ken Steacy runs a print on demand publishing company, (he recently brought the book "As I See" back in print) and is a fantastic comic book illustrator. Last week he put 600 of his best drawings on flickr. (as seen on drawn.ca)
posted by joelf at 12:28 AM PST - 7 comments

March 7

Kehinde Wiley : painter and sculptor . "The subjects, anonymous men in T-shirts and jeans that Wiley approaches on the street, are given the mantle of authority and grandiosity bestowed on figures such as Napoleon in Jacques-Louis David's famous depiction with a rearing steed or the holiness of saints." (via)
posted by desjardins at 10:36 PM PST - 7 comments

Whatever one's opinion of its possible limitations, the 2006 Iraq mortality survey produced epidemiological evidence that coalition forces have failed to protect Iraqi civilians... If, for the sake of argument, the study is wrong and the number of Iraqi deaths is less than half the infamous figure, is it acceptable that "only" 300,000 have died? Last November, with no explanation, the Iraqi Ministry of Health suddenly began citing 150,000 dead, five times its previous estimate. Is that amount of death acceptable? In January, the United Nations reported that more than 34,000 Iraqis were killed violently in the last year alone. Is that acceptable?
Regarding The Number, the result of what one of the study's authors calls an episode more deadly than the Rwandan genocide... [more within]
posted by y2karl at 10:32 PM PST - 44 comments

Renato Alarcão [flash] is a Brazillian children's book illustrator with brilliant sketchbooks. [More Inside]
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:32 PM PST - 5 comments

LOS GAUCHOS DE ACERO
posted by bardic at 8:50 PM PST - 21 comments

86 the Stone Age. And don’t say Primitive or Tribal on the BBC. It might be OK to say “changed little since the Stone Age.” Or maybe Stone Age is a fine euphemism for uncivilized. Perhaps the west needs more than 30 years to rethink it’s own tribal superstitions.
posted by conch soup at 8:47 PM PST - 44 comments

The annual fireworks festival at the town of YenShui in southern Taiwan is notable for many reasons, notwithstanding the extreme danger to the many participants (youtube link). Large “beehive” structures created by the townspeople each contain hundreds of rockets which are launched into the crowd. (youtube link). The ubiqui-pedia link is here
posted by mattoxic at 7:41 PM PST - 9 comments

Feds seek to gag D.C. Madam this madam threatens to spill the names about the biggies that used her services and so: [...]government lawyers claim that some discovery documents contain "personal information" about Palfrey's former johns and prostitutes that is "sensitive." The prosecution filing does not detail the nature of this confidential information, though the identity of Palfrey's D.C. customers would surely be cloaked if the protective order was signed by Judge Gladys Kessler[...]
posted by Postroad at 2:46 PM PST - 46 comments

22 basic suggested readings on the Middle East from history professor and informed commenter on Middle Eastern affairs Juan Cole.
posted by LobsterMitten at 2:41 PM PST - 37 comments

Zelda and the Golden Ratio. A fascinating examination of the music from Nintendo's Zelda games, and the recurring appearances of 0.618, the bisection point on a line at which the relationship of the shorter segment to the longer one is the same as that of the longer section to the whole line.
posted by jbickers at 1:51 PM PST - 24 comments

You Don't Know Jack playable online. "If 50 Cent was actually worth 50 cents when he was born in 1975, adjusting for inflation, what would his name be today?" Plus, see the topical daily DisOrDat, including: Is this quote from the Bible or Deathstalker III? Crayola color or award-nominated porn movie? Brand of computer software or member of the Justice League? (NSFW for insulting commentator and suggestive references)
posted by blahblahblah at 12:59 PM PST - 51 comments

The Search For Count Dante is a documentary-in-progress by filmmaker Floyd Webb (- Youtube trailer -). Webb takes on the daunting task of exploring the (larger than) life and times of martial artist Count Dante (born John Keehan), the then self-described "Deadliest Man Alive". Some of you may remember his ad from '60's and '70's comic books. [more inside]
posted by schleppo at 12:20 PM PST - 29 comments


Five Chapters. Weekly, serialized short fiction edited by David Daley, the man behind McSweeney's 20-Minute Stories Contest. Some contributors so far: Vendela Vida, Arthur Phillips, Sam Lipsyte, Anthony Swofford, Jess Walter, Stewart O'Nan.
posted by otio at 10:09 AM PST - 3 comments

Yesterday in New Bedford, Mass. an immigration raid netted some 300-350 illegal immigrants who were working at a factory that made (primarily) leather goods for the U.S. military. Mostly women from Central America, they were rounded up and sent to a detention facility 60 miles away...without their children, many of whom were stranded at daycare or school and are now in limbo. Meanwhile, Congress begins debate on immigration reform this week.
posted by lazywhinerkid at 9:48 AM PST - 61 comments

Ballet Deviare is a NYC ballet company that fuses extreme heavy metal and contemporary ballet. Seriously. What exactly does that look like? Well, you can check out some stills in their gallery, or watch some video of them performing in support of technical death metal darlings, Arsis.
posted by The Straightener at 9:35 AM PST - 17 comments

Captain America, RIP. Marvel kills off Captain America. Obviously this is Civil War (previous post) fallout, but how long can they honestly expect this to last?
posted by sbrollins at 9:18 AM PST - 94 comments

uclue is yet another questions and answers site. What's special about this one? Well, it's staffed by former Google Answers Researchers, and operates in a very similar way (although with a few differences) to the now-dead Google service. (via Ars Technica)
posted by chrismear at 8:14 AM PST - 14 comments

Is it racist to condemn fanaticism? Phyllis Chesler, the Emerita Professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies at the City University of New York, writes of her time as bride of a charming and Westernised Afghan Muslim.
posted by four panels at 7:53 AM PST - 86 comments

Slashdot poster has brilliant legislative reform idea: "Source Control for Bills in Congress." What if sneaky changes to pending legislation showed up as soon as they were made instead of in ominously worded media reports months later?
posted by grobstein at 7:22 AM PST - 62 comments

Now that I think about it, there *is* a pee scene in just about every Tom Hanks film I've watched. This quiz reminded me of that (even though I missed two). And when Madonna says "That was some good peeing," well, it must mean something.
posted by Oriole Adams at 6:00 AM PST - 44 comments

Verrines are described by the L.A. Times as layered luxury in a glass and are defined as appetizers or desserts that consist of a number of components layered artfully in a small glass. Feast your eyes on these uniquely prepared culinary items. Prepare your own at home by following these sweet and savory recipes.
posted by inconsequentialist at 5:39 AM PST - 31 comments

Leave No Child Inside
Are children disconnected from the natural world? With the rise of endless variations of in-home entertainment, parents are finding it harder to get kids to play outside, get muddy, and explore nature. Are we inadvertently creating yet another childhood malady (Nature Deficit Disorder)?
posted by moonbird at 4:23 AM PST - 55 comments

Sambo's Restaurant It turns out that many people enjoyed Sambo's restaurants back in the 50s, 60s and 70s, but apparently the real tale of Sambo and the tigers eventually became so infused with racist overtones that it overwhelmed the dining chain and essentially brought it down. The chain was named, incidentally, after the two men who opened the first restaurant: Sam Battistone and Newell Bohnett.
posted by davidmsc at 4:06 AM PST - 55 comments

Ken Wilber can stop his brain waves on demand. This (WMV) is the famous EEG machine recording where Ken Wilber enters various meditative states, one of which is a type of "thoughtless," "image-less," or "formless" state, whose correlate is that his brainwaves come to an almost complete stop, as clearly recorded on this portable electroencephalograph (EEG) machine. Seeing somebody's brainwaves flatline in about 4 seconds is a sight not easily forgotten! Also on YouTube.
posted by skepticX at 2:31 AM PST - 68 comments

March 6

QANTAS, Australia's national airline carrier that was once refrenced by Dustin Hoffman's character Ray in Rain Man, is to be taken over by a private consortium called Airline Partners Australia (APA) after the Federal Government gave approval for the takeover yesterday. So what better time than to endulge in a little bit of QANTAS history? Founded in Winton, Queensland on 16 November 1920 as 'Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services Limited' with just one Avro 540k, QANTAS has played a prominent part in Australia's history, with its fleet being nationalised, privatised and even conscripted for national service during WW2. And although Ray was wrong when he said that QANTAS had never had a crash (indeed, it had 8 and has had several more since Rain Man), the 'flying kangaroo' was still considered an "iconic Australian company" (although there is some debate on that). Nonetheless, if you're really interested in checking out some more QANTAS history, head on over to the National Library of Australia's website, where they have plenty of QANTAS ephemera material online for you to gander at.
posted by Effigy2000 at 11:41 PM PST - 38 comments

Sea Squirt Regrows Entire Body from One Blood Vessel. Most famous as the creature that settles down and eats its own brain (though that is not exactly correct), it appears the humble sea squirt has spectacular regenerative abilities as well, thanks to regeneration niches packed with stem cells. All glory to the sea squirt!
posted by homunculus at 9:58 PM PST - 19 comments

Eddie destroys the ship. Ron Moore's Battlestar Galactica podcasts have been discussed before, but the most recent one contains a gem. At the end of the episode Maelstrom, Edward James Olmos ("Eddie" to his friends on the set) lashes out in an unscripted, improvised, emotional moment, destroying a sailing ship model that had been a frequent prop on the set. Turns out the ship ... ahem ... wasn't a prop, but an extremely valuable museum piece.
posted by frogan at 9:45 PM PST - 79 comments

KetchupArt.com. Submit your own. [via It's Knuttz]
posted by mediareport at 9:09 PM PST - 4 comments

Based on research (from the Barna Group) that shows Christians act no better than non-Christians the Community Christian Church have made a series of Mac vs PC parodies (1,2,3,4) that criticize a certain type of Christian. The pastor of the CCC goes even further by saying the last thing the world needs is more Christians. Interesting discussion about the parody clips from Christian/Christ followers can be found here.
posted by meech at 8:13 PM PST - 63 comments

IBM Research and Technical Journals. Complete recent issues of IBM Research and Development Journal and Systems Journal as well as searchable archives.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:51 PM PST - 9 comments

Welcome to Desktop Tower Defence Creeps will try and make their way from left to right (and, depending on difficulty setting, from top to bottom). Use money to purchase canons which you then position to force the creeps to route around while sustaining fire. Killing creeps generates more money, which allows the purchase and/or upgrade of canons, which come in useful as the creeps getting stronger/more resistant to fire as the game progresses.
posted by jonson at 7:26 PM PST - 30 comments

Proported [Leaked] Walmart Internal-Marketing Presentation. Hate Walmart? Well, you're now a Conscientuous Objector (14% of their market). Read up on the Price-Value Shopper, the Brand Aspirationals, and the Price Sensitive Affluents, and see if you can figure out where you are in the Walmart Universe.
posted by rzklkng at 7:07 PM PST - 46 comments

The passing away of Ernest Gallo makes front-page news on CNN. What didn't get top billing was the death of Ernest's brother Joseph just two weeks ago (nytS), the youngest of three who was sued by his more famous older brothers for trying to sell cheese under the Gallo name. Joseph was never close to his brothers, despite being raised by them after their parents' murder-suicide. But hey, what's a FPP without a little upside - play the Gallo Food & Wine Matchmaker.
posted by phaedon at 6:29 PM PST - 18 comments

Tom Edwards: "I'm pretty sure I am the only cartoonist in the world who distributes his one-panel cartoon almost exclusively on wheel-thrown porcelain pots. It is the combination of these two humble art forms that makes for an odd way of making a living.”
posted by fandango_matt at 6:00 PM PST - 11 comments

Mayhem on the Ice! A short collection of brawls from the heyday of the hockey fight. A big one, and another (international nastiness). Goalie fight? GOALIE FIGHT! A few compilations. Many originate from a past misdeed, like the famous Colorado-Detroit rumble in '97. Debates are abound as to whether it should remain in the game, but fighting's probably not going anywhere.
posted by rollbiz at 3:53 PM PST - 77 comments

Alpha Cat vs. New Puppy - Day 1. Now, if only more relationships with such rocky starts had such happy endings. [YouTube - cute animals]
posted by krix at 2:56 PM PST - 48 comments

Hey everyone! It's Tuesday afternoon, I'm just chillin at work. I went to refill my coffee a little bit ago and discovered someone had left some Samoas in the breakroom! Anyway, I'm back at my desk now. Check it out, Samoas cupcakes (500 calories per, apparently)! When you get tired of looking at that, check out cupcakeblog.com, for a vast array of intriguing recipes and images sure to keep you entertained till five. Cheers!
posted by thirteenkiller at 1:10 PM PST - 53 comments

It was a cold day on Mount Washington in New Hampshire today, where the weather can really suck. With a temperature of -37F and a peak wind gust of 117mph, it was cold enough to turn boiling water to snow (youtube). Also, previously on MeFi.
posted by SteveInMaine at 12:53 PM PST - 60 comments

Le sociologue et philosophe Jean Baudrillard, mort mardi à Paris à l'âge de 77 ans.
posted by shoepal at 12:52 PM PST - 65 comments

Is the rise of philanthropic fashionistas decked out in Red T-shirts and iPods really the best way to save a child dying of AIDS in Africa? One year into the "save the world by shopping" initiative championed by Bono, Steven Spielberg and Chris Rock, and the bill is right at $100 million - and so far, Red has only raised about $18 million. Nonprofit watchdogs worry about a backlash. Red's CEO replies, "this marketing would have been spent anyway, on other product lines. It never would have been (nor will it ever be) given to the Global Fund."
posted by jbickers at 11:39 AM PST - 87 comments

The missive, on paper decorated with roses and butterflies addresses a Mr. Pulsifer, and implores him to "burn down Edith Wharton's house." Algonquin press goes just a touch overboard in their publicity for a new novel.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 10:54 AM PST - 9 comments

A virtual copy of Historiae Animalium, the first pictorial catalogue of the animal world (lots of pretty pictures, but the text is all in latin). It was compiled in the 16th century by the Swiss naturalist Conrad Gessner, who is considered the father of zoology (and, incidentally, also the father of bibliography [Word Document]).
posted by Kattullus at 10:07 AM PST - 29 comments

Scooter Libby guilty on four out of five counts. Not guilty on one charge of making false statements. Libby faces up to 30 years in prison and over $1 million in fines. TalkLeft's Jeralyn Merritt liveblogs.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:17 AM PST - 143 comments

Postman Pat the Drug Dealer. YouTube, 7 minutes, juvenile
posted by Mayor Curley at 8:24 AM PST - 13 comments

You would think that with 4,000 women and 200 girls together, along with hundreds of NGOs and representatives of 45 governments the United Nations' Commission on the Status of Women would be well covered by the media. Sadly, it is not: this year only 10 journalists demanded media accreditation to cover the international meeting, while pro-life groups are more than happy to send delegates arguing that "governments should protect girls from the moment of conception." The Commission however is no small event: it provided a legal frame protecting the rights of women and girls worldwide (those rights were officially adopted in the early 90s [!]). It also provides standards to which participant countries must try live up to. This blog takes us backstage, behind the CSW's scene.
posted by Sijeka at 7:55 AM PST - 21 comments

In the peaceful Sicilian village of Salem, a dark presence is about to make itself known. For years, the family based crime organization known as the Mafia has been establishing itself in the foundation of the community. Until now, the naive citizens have been unaware of the evil among them. Tonight, however, the Mafia makes its move. Tonight, someone will die, and until the Mafia has eliminated all opposition, the innocent will continue to die. Unless, of course, the Mafia is destroyed(PDF) first...
posted by robocop is bleeding at 7:46 AM PST - 31 comments

Impacts of Climate Change, the Potential Impacts to 2050 of a Mid-Upper Greenhouse Gas Emissions Scenario. From Global Business Network.
posted by stbalbach at 6:37 AM PST - 8 comments

Peak Oil no more? Prophets of peak oil are being proven wrong as new technologies increase oil recovery rates. In fact, the entire peak oil theory might be based on flawed assumptions.
posted by blahblahblah at 5:29 AM PST - 94 comments

The six string quartets of Béla Bartók: A guide for performers and listeners, by the Emerson Quartet...
posted by Wolfdog at 2:28 AM PST - 19 comments


Laz Rojas created "a one-man demo tape in which I portray 102 different characters in 52 scenes from my screenplays. The purpose of this demo is to display my abilities as an actor, writer, director, and editor." Don't miss this gem, featuring what must be the only one-man lesbian kiss ever filmed [SFW, as long as you don't mind being thought creepy]. He also makes cartoons, artwork, Wolfenstein mods, and has an awful lot to say about Titanic.
posted by mosessmith at 12:47 AM PST - 13 comments

The Independent Press Association is officially dead. It's demise was a long time coming. The future of small magazines looks pretty bleak.
posted by serazin at 12:35 AM PST - 17 comments

Draft Gore. He has participated in a lampoon of his defeat, has at least one web forum devoted to what might have been and may yet be, has his own web site, his own Wiki page, is an Academy Award winner, is encouraged to run by at least one major newspaper , and has numerous web sites devoted to encouraging him to run. His competion? Jeb Bush, (if there is any justice in this world, please let it be the Jeb miester), Rudy Giuliani, and John McCain.

I predict a landslide of unprecedented proportions. Metafilter before .
posted by altman at 12:18 AM PST - 88 comments

March 5

Unicycle skills. Note: 40sec YouTube post. More eponysterical subject related material here.
posted by lalochezia at 11:19 PM PST - 16 comments

Virginia DMV [youtube] "In Virginia you can get a reissued drivers license on the spot if you have lost your license or just want a better photo."
posted by KokuRyu at 10:54 PM PST - 12 comments



Last Chance. "It took the Mississippi River 6,000 years to build the Louisiana coast. It took man (and natural disasters) 75 years to destroy it. Experts agree we have 10 years to act before the problem is too big to solve." [Via First Draft.]
posted by homunculus at 9:15 PM PST - 19 comments

Three days of rioting and protest across Denmark, fueled by an influx of supporters from outside the country, was the result of the Danish police's sudden eviction of long-standing squat Ungdomshuset ("Youth House"). It was the last such social centre in Denmark, whose self-governed municipality of Christiana also began as a squat (though its future remains in question).

Squatting, the act of taking over abandoned property (sometimes surreptitiously as a way to secure housing for the homeless, sometimes publically as a way to exert political pressure) has a long history, and often meets with intense repression, though has sometimes been instrumental in city-building. In New York City's early days, homesteading was how many neighbourhoods began, and the squat movement which birthed the now-legal ABC No Rio community centre is linked to the city's community gardens, as well as its independent arts culture through publications such as World War 3. (WW3's co-founder Seth Tobocman receives continued attention for his graphic novel War In The Neighbourhood.)

Demolition of Ungdomshuset has already begun.
posted by poweredbybeard at 8:21 PM PST - 54 comments


John Waddell went to show his friends his latest masterpiece "The Gathering" only to find it stolen. Bronze statues can take Waddell 10 years to create and the piece was worth $384,000. The statues which made up the piece weighed between 750 lb - 1500 lb which could make the thieves up to $32,000 from the scrap metal, a minor fraction of their real worth. It is not the first time thieves have used art for scrap metal.
posted by Count at 7:03 PM PST - 27 comments

Upgraded your install of WordPress to 2.1.1 in the last few days? You'll want to upgrade again to 2.1.2 real quick-like. Seems somebody gained access to the server hosting the download file, added some bad code, and now your barn doors are wide open.
posted by 40 Watt at 6:44 PM PST - 24 comments

Zoomquilt II! (flash) The recursive surrealist loop reloaded, with a better interface and more detailed images. A screensaver version is available here. Here's the first Zoomquilt (mentioned previously).
posted by Burhanistan at 6:32 PM PST - 18 comments

The Knitting Machine is a performance art piece/sculpture by Providence artist Dave Cole. Cole's other works include a Memorial Flag made out of toy soldiers and a size 8 dress made entirely out of money.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 6:06 PM PST - 3 comments


[HealthNews Filter]: Dick Cheney has a DVT (deep vein thrombosis). Ironically, it occurs right at the start of DVT Awareness Month. Fortunately, he'll have plenty of DVT-related activities to keep him occupied. Like designing his own DVT socks (which should, really, be T.E.D. Hose).
posted by scblackman at 2:43 PM PST - 108 comments

What is Philadelphia's trajectory in 2007? Seven cities are compared: Philadelphia, Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Cleveland, Detroit and Pittsburgh.
posted by jacobw at 1:54 PM PST - 29 comments

Aardman Studios' Purple and Brown. [YouTube]
posted by oneirodynia at 1:37 PM PST - 16 comments

Lancelot the Living Unicorn (actually a white angora goat whose horn buds were grafted onto the center of its skull by mystic Oberon Zell-Ravenheart), a popular attraction of the Marin County Renaissance Faire, Marine World Africa USA and Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, continues to elicit fond memories in spite of being exhibited by a horrific murderer.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 12:29 PM PST - 28 comments

There are holes in the earth's crust! It turns out that the ozone layer was just keeping up with the Jones's; in the middle of the Atlantic ocean, there is a patch of several thousand square kilometers where the mantle is exposed. 'The team of scientists from Cardiff University stress there is no need for the public to panic about the giant hole even though they describe it as "a gaping open wound in the Earth's skin".' The scientific team departs today to investigate the hole. They will be detailing their progress on a blog. And you can ask them questions about their project, which they may answer online.
posted by louigi at 11:49 AM PST - 67 comments

FosterClub is an online resource for kids in foster care, providing answers, inspiration, even downloadable forms to give to caseworkers, as well as a sister site for older kids.
posted by Methylviolet at 11:23 AM PST - 7 comments

For those of you who haven't been following The Mortgage Lender Implode-O-Meter and other purveyors of financial and real estate schadenfreude, the sub-prime mortgage market is in some serious trouble. The stock charts of the likes of New Century Financial and Fremont say a lot, although BusinessWeek and MarketWatch have been helpful in explaining. Is there really fraud in 70% of early payment defaults? I know traders are given to hyperbole, but Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch as "almost junk"?
posted by Adamchik at 11:05 AM PST - 55 comments

Judge blocks damaging articles, bloggers republish them in defiance here and here. Will the Kansas City utility board sue them, too?
posted by nospecialfx at 10:58 AM PST - 57 comments

Top Secret: We're Wiretapping You It could be a scene from Kafka or Brazil. Imagine a government agency, in a bureaucratic foul-up, accidentally gives you a copy of a document marked "top secret." And it contains a log of some of your private phone calls. You read it and ponder it and wonder what it all means. Then, two months later, the FBI shows up at your door, demands the document back and orders you to forget you ever saw it.
posted by Postroad at 10:19 AM PST - 29 comments

Monologues: tons of great monolgoues here including Coffee's for Closers, How To Fake Like You are Nice and Caring, a 12 inch proboscis, Winocki kept his word, and many others.
posted by mattbucher at 10:08 AM PST - 12 comments


"Dear Mr. Prime minister haper, I don’t like to stay in this jail. I’m only nine years old. I want to go to my school in Canada. I’m sleeping beside the wall. Please Mr. Priminister haper give visa for my family. This place is not good for me." Two Iranian parents and their Canadian-born son Kevin have been detained in a Texas detention centre after trying to escape their torturous and dangerous situation in Iran. Hear the interviews.
posted by Menomena at 6:46 AM PST - 96 comments

Sickday. (for my NYC mefites) As I sit here in Chicago with a fresh case of bronchitis and unable to leave the office, I'm wishing I was back in NYC. Apparently they have plans to expand soon...
posted by allkindsoftime at 6:41 AM PST - 42 comments


Australia: the new 51st state John Howard's servility to the US is even greater than Tony Blair's. "John Pilger," wrote Harold Pinter, "unearths, with steely attention facts, the filthy truth. I salute him." via New Statesman.
posted by adamvasco at 3:01 AM PST - 40 comments

Stop the War video performed by Speak the Hungarian Rapper. Try not to laugh. Fan page with lyrics and song analysis.
posted by skepticX at 3:00 AM PST - 18 comments

Screenvader. Media and algorithms and home made music. [flash]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:07 AM PST - 9 comments

Paprika. (warning-flash, nsfw) If you've seen the bizarre anime series Paranoia Agent, you've been exposed to the genius of Satoshi Kon.

His latest project is generating enormous buzz--now that an American release for it is finally due in May.
Comments by reviewers seem to agree that it is ten times weirder--and cooler--than Paranoia Agent. The American trailer, at least, is an eye-popper. One note: if you often fall from great heights during your nightmares, you might want to skip this movie. (via)
posted by metasonix at 12:08 AM PST - 30 comments

March 4

...A few days ago the chief of the Israeli police resigned after an investigation that found several of Israel’s highest police officers guilty of corruption and negligence. This came within a week of the forced resignation of Israel’s Chief of Staff from the military because of the fiascos of the second Lebanon war... some ten days after Israel’s minister of justice was convicted of sexual assault while on duty... after Israel’s president – who holds a largely symbolic position – resigned temporarily following charges of rape and sexual misconduct. ....several other investigations are still pending, not least two or three directed at the Prime Minister himself, Ehud Olmert, concerning corruption and favoritism... Suddenly the Palestinians and the Hizbullah, and even Iranian nukes, have taken a back seat: Israel does indeed seem in danger of imploding from within, at least as a viable democracy.
Is Israel Falling Apart ?
posted by y2karl at 11:20 PM PST - 55 comments

Christel Assante carves eggshells into extraordinary pieces of art. SculptorRon Cheruka , who goes by the nickname "the egg man," also works in the medium of eggshell, but he is not quite as talented in my opinion, a Salieri to Assante's Mozart.
posted by jonson at 10:36 PM PST - 17 comments


Food has never been so sexy (Probably NSFW). Will I ever look at a banana the same way ever again? Probably not.
posted by hafetysazard at 10:19 PM PST - 36 comments

Oh, Wicked Wanda. So very, very NSFW. But the artwork is nice. Full-color comics from Penthouse, circa 1970s. Background
posted by John of Michigan at 8:24 PM PST - 14 comments

The Ultimate Weenie Roaster (maybe NSFW if your boss is a total prude) is a customizable hot dog holder that ensures that your, um, weiner gets proper heat distribution or something. Although it looks like you really need two to tango.
posted by Burhanistan at 6:23 PM PST - 15 comments

Grandmaster Flash - White Lines. A strange video for a strange song. Allegedly directed by Spike Lee and starring Laurence Fishburne.
posted by grouse at 5:52 PM PST - 66 comments

So you want to write a textbook? Take advice from N. Gregory Mankiw who got a $1.4m advance for his book on economics. Try some advice from Garrett Bauman who says no to originality or David A Rees who says the opposite. Maybe you just need a dose of reality from the bitter guy.
posted by meech at 4:33 PM PST - 16 comments

Music Porn - Synthesizer sex.
posted by loquacious at 4:11 PM PST - 16 comments

0wned
Some members of the African American community have said Barack Obama doesn't represent them because his family has no history of slavery. But we now know that is not true - his family used to own loads of them.
posted by w0mbat at 2:08 PM PST - 98 comments


With the help of Ossur's prosthetic feet, Oscar Pistorius is differently abled. Video. Walk Tall should be the next LiveStrong. (via)
posted by anotherpanacea at 12:17 PM PST - 8 comments

"We asked 100 writers and thinkers to answer the following question: Left and right defined the 20th century. What's next? The pessimism of their responses is striking: almost nobody expects the world to get better in the coming decades, and many think it will get worse." From Prospect Magazine.
posted by limon at 12:00 PM PST - 35 comments

Inspired by Ironic Sans's 50 States Game comes the more worldly (and difficult) 245 Countries in 10 minutes. Also pairs well with the previously posted GeoSense.

(Caveats/Minor Spoilers: Game has some questionable choices, like making you type in the long form of the country's name, i.e. "People's Republic of", rather than the common usage name. Some countries have "The" in front of them. Also, your spelling must be perfect, which can trip you up for those obscure island nations, and countries you know but don't know the exact spelling of. Good Luck!)
posted by wander at 11:31 AM PST - 64 comments

look up! dogs on roofs!
flickr dog clusters. take a look at the dogblog. take a puppybreak. start a puppy war. dogs and cats, living together. mass hysteria. dogs are in ur livejournal macroing ur pix. pictures of dog noses (dog nose trivia: a digitally scanned dog nose provided the texture for the cgi shadow ships on babylon 5 - couldn't find a live link for it, tho). as for the back end of the dog, there are reasons to train your dog to crap on command (no direct link -- scroll down to "Level Three")
previously
posted by rmd1023 at 11:31 AM PST - 12 comments

The Must-Do List. The NY Times lists the administration policies that congress must reverse if it intends to undo the damage done to America by the Bush Administration.
posted by empath at 11:17 AM PST - 17 comments

Huck Finn, Heart of Darkness, A Tale of Two Cities, and others - free audio books. Text and audio on the web, or downloadable mp3s with embedded text.
posted by Wolfdog at 7:15 AM PST - 15 comments

The Beatles are Bigger than Jesus. It was 41 years ago today, that the Evening Standard published a Maureen Cleave interview with John Lennon, in which he declared the Beatles “more popular than Jesus”. Later in July, DATEbook, an American teen mag, printed only the Jesus statement and nothing else from the interview. The firestorm of reaction in the US was immediate. Radio stations nationwide, but particularly in the South and in the Midwest, banned the playing of Beatles records [Real Audio]. Death threats against all of the Fab Four poured in. In Cleveland, a preacher threatened to excommunicate any member of his congregation who listened to the Beatles, and in the South, the Ku Klux Klan burned the Beatles in effigy and nailed Beatles albums to burning crosses. On August 11, Lennon held a press conference in Chicago, where he apologized, sort of [Real Audio]. The press conference was on the eve of the Beatles’ last tour of their career. Many say this epsiode, as well as the riots that accompanied their tour of the Philippines (also in July), as well as the accumulated stress of being on top of the world for nearly four years at that point, precipitated the beginning of the end of the Beatles.
Is it true though? Are the Beatles bigger than Jesus? Though this was unanswerable in 1966, thanks to the magic of the web, we do know the answer today: according to Google, the answer is no. Still, other views persist.
posted by psmealey at 6:56 AM PST - 71 comments

Members of the Cherokee Nation have voted to revoke tribal citizenship for descendants of black slaves the Cherokees once owned.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:37 AM PST - 117 comments



March 3

Darwin's God. "A scientific exploration of how we have come to believe in God." This article tracks the possibility that belief in a higher power is the product of evolution.
posted by inconsequentialist at 11:49 PM PST - 50 comments

The Thirteen Towers of Chankillo in Peru may be the Western Hemisphere's oldest known full-service solar observatory, showing evidence of early, sophisticated Sun cults, according to archaeoastronomy professor Clive Ruggles. The 2,300-year-old complex featured 13 towers running north to south along a ridge and spread across 980 feet to form a toothed horizon that spans the solar arc. Last year, another ancient observatory was discovered in Peru by Robert Benfer. The Temple of the Fox is 4,200 years old, making it 1,900 years older than the Chankillo site, but wasn't a complete calendar.
posted by homunculus at 10:38 PM PST - 8 comments

GiraffobiaDotCom — the place for people what thinks giraffes is scary.
posted by Kattullus at 8:36 PM PST - 22 comments

This gem got me thinking: Songs about a place. Some are more evocative of the geography, some of a tangential longing merely rooted in a place and others -- while about a place -- are really rooted more in a time. Some places immortalized in song you want to visit, others you don't , and others don't really exist at all, though we may know somewhere like it. But near or far, border to border, coast-to-coast (from the west side* to the east side and somewhere in the middle as well, there's musical pins all over the map. [links go to videos] *no direct link, second entry
posted by spacely_sprocket at 8:04 PM PST - 16 comments

Internet Radio Royalty Rate Announced. Internet radio doomed?
posted by bowline at 5:31 PM PST - 72 comments

Booktribes is a new site from the creators of writing site Abctales where bibliophiles can compile lists of every book they've ever read. Replete with a simple, intuitive interface, compiling your life's reading list becomes strangely addictive, and for the whole of March, the best comment of the day on this as-yet underpopulated site wins a copy of David Mitchell's Black Swan Green, with the best comment of the month winning the entire 21 volume Sceptre Collection. And if you're worried your reading list isn't up to scratch, don't panic - you can always cheat.
posted by RokkitNite at 4:59 PM PST - 20 comments

Mac VS PC And this time PC is the cool guy and Mac is the stooge! Gems like "Mac works for PC", "PC gets the girl." and "Mac may be cool but PC has the money." (Quicktime links)
posted by tatnasty at 4:33 PM PST - 79 comments

An Islamic History of Europe: (90 minute BBC documentary on Google video.) Rageh Omaar uncovers the hidden story of Europe's Islamic past and looks back to a golden age when European civilisation was enriched by Islamic learning. When the Moors Ruled in Europe:(102 minute BBC documentary on Google video.) A look at the Islamic past of Spain and the influence it has on the present.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:54 PM PST - 15 comments

Increased violence linked to scriptures. University of Michigan psychologist Brad Bushman and his colleagues suggest that scriptural violence sanctioned by God can increase aggression, especially in believers.
posted by Brian B. at 12:49 PM PST - 93 comments

Confessions of an Army Torturer "...as an army interrogator, he tortured detainees for information he admits they rarely had. Since leaving Iraq he’s taken this story public, doing battle on national television against the war’s architects for giving him the orders he regrets he obeyed...
posted by Postroad at 11:20 AM PST - 42 comments

Hopkins, wearing a black ski mask and latex gloves, allegedly walked up to the casino's cashier and pointed a shotgun at her, robbing her of $336, according to court records...At about that moment, a man named Tyrone, whose last name no one seems to know, charged Hopkins and grabbed the shotgun, pointing it into the air. With the robber pinned, Ren, 30, grabbed a full roll of duct tape and went to work. "I wrapped his hands, legs, whatever," Ren recalled Friday, as he smoked a cigarette, sipped a Budweiser and held the duct tape in his hand. "He ain't moving. He ain't going nowhere." At that point, the men, feeling bad for the woman who had been robbed, decided to make Hopkins apologize to her. When he was placed in front of the cashier, Hopkins apologized and "cried like a baby," Kleppen said. Hopkins and Caward were scheduled to appear in Gallatin County Justice Court Friday morning, although they were "too high" and instead will make their initial appearances on Monday, Judge G.L. Smith said.
posted by 445supermag at 8:37 AM PST - 50 comments

BBC Tribute to Freddie Mercury (1991) [youtube] Lots of live concerts.
posted by jouke at 6:59 AM PST - 33 comments

Bee eaters and lesser kestrels.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:37 AM PST - 12 comments

FanNation | The Republic of Sport It was bound to happen. A fully-featured social networking site for Sport Fans, includes, ability to track community events on a regional basis, hot topic tracking, blogging capability, player tracking, and ability to gather articles and stories from favorite news sources. Overall, a nice set of functionality, even if at launch, it is only focused on US Sports. Our beloved SpoFi probably doesn't have much to worry about until this site builds a following, but it does seem to have something new to offer sports fanatics.
posted by psmealey at 6:18 AM PST - 12 comments

"Another useful analogy might be with a clearing in the jungle. The web is certainly a jungle, and without a few clearings it is hard to see how the innocent can stay sane in there, and it might soon be hard to see anything at all." The words of poet and essayist Clive James, whose eponymous site is an online galley/anthology of breathtaking writing, art, and video interviews. My favorites include Ophelia Redpath's paintings titled after Shakespeare quotes, Laura Noble's photos of rusty things, and, of course, a collection James's outstanding poetry.
posted by eustacescrubb at 5:14 AM PST - 8 comments

March 2

Understanding Human Prehistory. Mike Munford (who???) summarises the results of his "limited study of human prehistory for the benefit of others who may have found most of the available books on it as baffling as [he] did."
posted by Effigy2000 at 10:44 PM PST - 21 comments

Convicted as an ecoterrorist, a brilliant young scholar nose-dives in prison. An article on Billy Cottrell, a physics genius with Asperger's Syndrome who was sentenced to 8.5 years in prison for his role in destroying $5 million worth of SUVs. His case was previously discussed here. [Via BB.]
posted by homunculus at 10:29 PM PST - 204 comments

Interview of a Senior Administration Official by the Traveling Press. It appears that the official doesn't want to be identified. The reason is not known.
posted by lee at 9:45 PM PST - 28 comments


ABC is developing another new comedy pilot. Based on? Geico caveman commercials, of course. Because that kind of thing has worked so well before.
posted by miss lynnster at 9:19 PM PST - 62 comments

Stephen Hawking in space. "On April 26, Dr. Hawking, surrounded by a medical entourage, is to take a zero-gravity ride out of Cape Canaveral on a so-called vomit comet, a padded aircraft that flies a roller-coaster trajectory to produce periods of weightlessness." [NY Times article]
posted by inconsequentialist at 7:07 PM PST - 22 comments

Coulterfilter: She calls John Edwards a "faggot" speaking at this year's Conservative Political Action Conference. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was thrilled to be speaking before her ("Oh yeah!"), and during her talk she went on to endorse him. At least one conservative blogger isn't pleased with Coulter's act, while a prominent liberal blogger sees this as yet another example of "IOKIYAR" behavior. Gay Republican writer Andrew Sullivan also weighs in: "When you see her in such a context, you realize that she truly represents the heart and soul of contemporary conservative activism, especially among the young."
posted by bardic at 6:58 PM PST - 276 comments

"Cats milk has long been a popular gourmet food in eastern Europe and it is a highly-prized and precious commodity." Horse milk too, apparently.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:56 PM PST - 30 comments

Enriched uranium unearthed from man's garden A German man obtained and buried it in his garden, raising concerns about the security of Germany's nuclear reactors. The German version of the article is more funny, since he explains how he tried to convince the authorities for 15 years that he had enriched uranium in his garden...
posted by yoyo_nyc at 5:49 PM PST - 23 comments

Maria Montessori, the first woman to graduate from an Italian medical school, changed the world of education, although she left her own child in the care of professionals for most of his life. Her work is available online.
Her method is controversial, both for it's rigidity and it's lack of focus on grades and testing, but research points to the positive impact of the method on social and academic skills as well as math skills specifically. This site includes historical photos of Montessori and her schools around the world (site uses frames, sorry no direct links - click EsF/historical photos) A traveling exhibit marks this year as the 100th anniversary of Montessori's birth. A bit more on youtube.
posted by serazin at 5:16 PM PST - 19 comments

Sorry lads - Wank Week is cancelled. Channel 4's planned series on masturbation, which would have come this month and which was to feature such illuminating documentaries as "I Can't Stop Wanking" and "Masturbation for Women" (ukguard@mailinator.com/tester), as well as a portrait of the UK's first masturbate-a-thon, has been pulled as a result of the recent Big Brother controversy. Would-be viewers feel stiffed and wonder why 4 is being so hard on its viewers, who are now left to entertain themselves.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:52 PM PST - 22 comments

While doing research to learn some mexican and latino songs, I found "Mexican Song", "Cartel de Sinaloa", comedian Pablo Francisco and Ray Conniff. Let's just call this some YouTube Friday Fun.
posted by snsranch at 4:26 PM PST - 4 comments

Are you a snowboarder without snow, a surfer without surf or a skate rat sick of concrete? Grab a Scarpar (as soon as they're available) and hit the...trails. Or, if you prefer a nonmotorized offroad shredding experience, try a mountainboard. Just try really hard not to fall.
posted by gottabefunky at 2:19 PM PST - 21 comments

Ayaan Hirsi Ali-Infidel from the Middle East Controversial dutch author, film maker, atheist, critic of Islam, and feminist Ayaan Hirsi Ali Has been making the rounds for her book, Infidel. She says: the only way to preserve Islam on the one hand and counter them as moderate Muslims is to say "Well you guys are right. All this stuff is in the Qu'ran. The Qu'ran is written by human beings. And as human beings, endowed with reason, we can change this because we don't think that it's beneficial. Or even if we are not going to change it, we are going to believe that in its context, because the Qu'ran was written in a different time, in a different context, in a different age. We're going to move on; we're going to take from the Qu'ran those things that we think are compatible with human hearts." But the minute you start doing that, that's when hell comes in, and the radicals will say "Oh, but then you are not a believer because you are refuting what God says." Also: "What is going to be left of Saudi Arabia if you take away the Qu'ran and the Shar'ia and the prophet. There's simply going to be no Saudi state. They'll all want secularism; they'll all want democracy."
posted by MDA38 at 1:55 PM PST - 40 comments

Don't click this link yet. Think about all 50 United States, and then, when you're ready, click the link. It goes to an ajaxified quiz page, with a timer set to 10 minutes which starts counting down on page load, and a form entry field where you start typing the names of the states. When you get one right it automatically moves to a spontaneously generating list at to the bottom of the page. If the ten minutes elapse & you fail to name all fifty, the ones that you missed are revealed. Okay, now go.
posted by jonson at 1:30 PM PST - 235 comments

iTheory is a unique, free program designed by a music student that turns your iPod into a portable learning tool for ear training of music theory. Quiz yourself on intervals, chords, or scales, or train yourself to have perfect pitch.
posted by hydropsyche at 1:23 PM PST - 17 comments

Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, domo...domo
posted by jason's_planet at 12:35 PM PST - 22 comments

"All over Orlando you see forces at work that are changing America from Fairbanks to Little Rock. This, truly, is a 21st-century paradigm: It is growth built on consumption, not production; a society founded not on natural resources, but upon the dissipation of capital accumulated elsewhere; a place of infinite possibilities, somehow held together, to the extent it is held together at all, by a shared recognition of highway signs, brand names, TV shows, and personalities, rather than any shared history. Nowhere else is the juxtaposition of what America actually is and the conventional idea of what America should be more vivid and revealing."

"Welcome to the theme-park nation." [more inside]
posted by wander at 12:10 PM PST - 61 comments

The Principles of Economics by the Standup Economist A short, funny video that riffs on Mankiw's 10 Principles of Economics. Check out the hilarious proof that trade can make everyone worse off!!! The standup economist is Yoram Bauman.
posted by storybored at 11:38 AM PST - 14 comments

Burka Band : Afganistan's first riot grrl band
posted by Stynxno at 11:21 AM PST - 32 comments

It begins in the paraventricular nucleus. It has been observed in the womb. Muslims believe it's an indication of Satanic possession. Too much of it might be a bad thing. Pandiculation sometimes occurs. In terminal rabies cases and in five percent of Clomipramine users it leads to spontaneous orgasm. Previous wisdom held it was caused by a buildup of carbon dioxide in the blood and mirror neurons make it contagious. And yet still nobody knows precisely why it happens.
posted by inoculatedcities at 11:20 AM PST - 25 comments

Kent State Professor alleged terrorist? Some say yes, some say no.
posted by sadie01221975 at 10:51 AM PST - 65 comments

Saturn is gorgeous. And humans have never seen it from this angle before. (Full sized version)
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 9:37 AM PST - 41 comments

Thanks for not suing us, George. Ryan and Dorkman return with a sequel to their previous Star Wars fanfilm. Via Wondermark.
posted by Richard Daly at 9:30 AM PST - 15 comments

Space volcano. The New Horizons space probe, en route to Pluto and the Kuiper Belt, captures an amazing image of the Tvashtar volcano on Jupiter's moon Io.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 9:21 AM PST - 9 comments

The Swiss accidentally invaded Liechtenstein last night but no retaliation is expected. Oops! Guess it's time to make these standard military issue. The last time something like this happened, the Spanish ignored an accidental British invasion. Previously on MeFi: More about Liechtenstein than anyone ever cared to ask.
posted by zarq at 8:22 AM PST - 53 comments

(Not So) Fun Flash Friday: "The Great Adventure in Getting Killed". Z to shoot, X to jump, R to retry (you'll mostly be using the last one).
posted by champthom at 8:13 AM PST - 35 comments

Is Cate Blanchett a global warming star or stinker? How about Angelina Jolie? Um, George Bush? They got the money and the fame, but are they doing anything good with it, like maybe saving the planet.
posted by jacob hauser at 8:13 AM PST - 22 comments

Metafilter's own flapjax at midnite was interviewed by an English language Japanese webzine named gyaku. Check out flapjax's generous contributions to mefi music here. Do yourself a favor and listen.
posted by Ynoxas at 8:07 AM PST - 12 comments


Marijuana, the wonder drug. A new study in the journal Neurology is being hailed as unassailable proof that marijuana is a valuable medicine. It is a sad commentary on the state of modern medicine that we still need "proof" of something that medicine has known for 5,000 years.
posted by ZenMasterThis at 7:49 AM PST - 80 comments

Holi: The Festival of Colours.
posted by hadjiboy at 7:29 AM PST - 8 comments

New York bans the most offensive word in the English language. (Previously 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:18 AM PST - 90 comments

Whenever I feel confused about the rights of artists in this age of freely-shared media – which is easily done, let's face it – I take a moment to revisit Pere Ubu's page of protocols. It's a beautifully written, concise series of rules which neatly explains, amongst many other things, why there are (virtually) no Ubu videos on YouTube. I used to work for David during the 1990s; the clarity of his thoughts on the music business was always inspiring, and continues to be so.
posted by rhodri at 6:29 AM PST - 61 comments

People wondered how something as blatant as this got in Billy Martin's 1989 baseball card. President Bush and Mickey Mantle want to know too.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 6:18 AM PST - 14 comments

The Best of Technology Writing 2006. 24 articles from Salon, New Yorker, NYT, Discover, etc..free book from digitalculturebooks and UofMichigan Press, also on Amazon.
posted by stbalbach at 6:00 AM PST - 4 comments

Carbon credits on ebay. Let the bidding wars commence.
posted by wallstreet1929 at 5:39 AM PST - 12 comments

Beethoven died from lead poisoning.
posted by sluglicker at 2:20 AM PST - 41 comments

Redefining Avogadro's Number. A mole is the number of molecules in a gram of water: ~6.022 x 1023. Unfortunately "a gram" is defined by a chunk of metal in a vault in France, the last of the seven SI units still defined by a physical artifact. Since the reference mass (known as "Le Gran K") is actually changing over time (due to cleaning, handling, etc), the definition of a gram is currently temporally unstable. Now a new proposal has been put forward to explicitly define the number to be a known integer: 602,214,141,070,409,084,099,072, which would fundamentally change the way we define a gram. Le Gran K could become a historical curiosity like the original platinum meter stick.
posted by dkg at 1:17 AM PST - 39 comments

March 1

A Damned Good Dam Site. The Fort Peck Dam in Montana, authorized by Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1933 and completed in 1940, is the largest hydraulically filled dam in the United States. The website is a wonderful compendium of history, technology, tragedy, personal stories, photographs, a webcam and much more. The dam also has the distinction of being featured on the very first Life Magazine cover, photographed by Margaret Bourke-White.
posted by amyms at 10:04 PM PST - 18 comments

Somewhere deep inside a fractal.... Bizarre, nonlogical, glitchy cartoons that are "not ashamed of coming out of a computer." Satire? Or serious attempt to point animators away from "cushioned, balletic movements" and traditional stories, and towards "an aesthetic which adopts the native idiosyncrasies and flaws of the software in which it was born"? (Note: the 'PLEASE DO NOT WATCH THESE CARTOONS IF YOU SUFFER FROM PHOTOSENSITIVE EPILEPSY' applies mainly to the flashing intros, forward through the first 25 seconds in each cartoon and there's other stuff.) [via]
posted by mediareport at 8:59 PM PST - 22 comments

The Eurovision song contest season has just begun, and already there is controversy. The Israeli entrant, the Teapacks' "Push the Button" [warnings: Windows Media video, strange-looking accordian player], has English, French, and Hebrew lyrics that talk about certain "crazy rulers" who are "gonna blow us up to kingdom come" concluding that "I don't wanna die, I wanna see the flowers bloom, don't wanna go kaput-kaboom." These lyrics are apparently too political for Eurovision, which is likely to ban the song.
posted by blahblahblah at 8:55 PM PST - 28 comments

"We, due to our experience in riding chopper bicycles, tallbikes, and the like, will finally find ourselves at the top of the food chain, and it is we who will lead humanity out of the rubble Welcome to the world of mutant and freak bikes. While just fun for many some folks see the freak bike movement as something political but as often happens politics can bring controversy. It's a worldwide phenomina with roots going back to the 19th century. Mutant and freak bikes at flickr. A previous related post.
posted by arse_hat at 8:52 PM PST - 11 comments

Pretending not to notice is a treasure of a blog I found this evening. While searching for images of currency suitable for incorporating into a bar chart, I stumbled upon this, and was sucked right into a world of h8r cows, purloined existential art, found poetry, Cat Power, this fax, and....WTF? There's lots of great photos, too. Oh yeah, there's also an easter egg and his archives autoplay music!
posted by figment of my conation at 8:41 PM PST - 6 comments


Propaganda. The death of Horst-Wessel . A clip from a documentary about the rise of the Third Riche and how it used Horst-Wessel's song "The flag on high" and his death as a tool of propaganda. Then ending with a clip about propaganda from the film Network.
posted by nola at 6:01 PM PST - 10 comments

Don Marco, The Master Crayon Artist.
posted by Wet Spot at 4:37 PM PST - 16 comments

Always wanted to wake up with Stephen Fry? Now you can, with the - in itself quite interesting - VOCO Clock.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 4:28 PM PST - 21 comments

The Departed: Edited Version [language NSFW, slightly]
posted by psmealey at 3:27 PM PST - 73 comments

The Next Attack. "Terrorists in Iraq are becoming proficient at blowing up oil refineries. Similar plants in a handful of American cities represent our greatest vulnerability. We could easily be making them less dangerous. But we’re not." And one of the key players in keeping things that way happens to be Dick Cheney’s son-in-law.
posted by homunculus at 1:43 PM PST - 38 comments

Steampunk Star Wars. An ongoing series of drawings by Eric Poulton of Star Wars characters redone in the style of Jules Verne era sci-fi. Sadly only three have been done, so far, but hopefully more to come. Via
posted by jonson at 1:24 PM PST - 47 comments


In this corner: John "Mack Daddy" Mackey. In this corner: Michael "The Pollanator" Pollan. Mackey. Pollan. Mackey. Pollan. Mackey vs. Pollan!! (.rm file via)
posted by ericbop at 12:07 PM PST - 5 comments

"A man who was found dressed in latex and handcuffs brought a donkey to his room in a Galway city centre hotel, because he was advised “to get out and meet people,” the local court heard last week...." (Via)
posted by mosk at 11:36 AM PST - 52 comments

"You're a goddamn cheat Chris!"* were a string of words shouted at most of my childhood family reunions. For decades the males of my extend family have vented their most masculine, primordial, and often intoxicated angst around this small board. Today we find ourselves dispersed - DC, Florida, Rwanda, Los Angeles, etc - unable to throw temper tantrums over the loss Irkutsk. That is, until we discovered: THE CONQUER CLUB

* I have no relation to these people

posted by Dr.James.Orin.Incandenza at 11:12 AM PST - 37 comments

STEAM. Australian artist Donna Marcus uses kitchenware to make geodesic spheres to be placed in conspicuous locations.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:43 AM PST - 16 comments

AestheticallyUnappealingBedfellowsFilter: "George Soros initiated holdings in Oil Equipment & Services company Halliburton Co.. His purchase prices were between $27.62 and $33.53, with an estimated average price of $31.3. The impact to his portfolio due to this purchase was 2.02%. His holdings was 1,999,450 shares as of 12/31/2006. Halliburton Co. closed today at $30.05." Maybe he's 'culture jamming'? Might raise some amusing ethical conundra in any case.
posted by waxbanks at 9:29 AM PST - 53 comments


Digg has been gamed. Wired writer Annalee Newitz used the User/Submitter service to buy votes on news site/social aggregatordigg. Hours after she hired the service, her fake blog site, now popular through treachery, was on digg's front page.
posted by four panels at 8:56 AM PST - 57 comments

Are you delusional? Synopsis of author Francis Wheen's new book How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World: A Short History of Modern Delusions provides an interesting outlook on the modern condition.
posted by Benny Andajetz at 8:27 AM PST - 51 comments

What does one wear to Ride the Valkyries? A silk dress? Something with "richness of the material, width, ruches, flounces, bustles, ribbons ..."? Apparently Richard Wagner, the neckbearded, anti-Semetic, hero to Adolph Hitler may have had a little skin problem. Or maybe a fetish. Or both. Either way, he did so like the feel of satin against his skin. Perhaps Wagner should have gone with thevelvet. In any case, this news will make Fritz Freleng appear even more brilliant for having cross-dressed Bugs Bunny in the 1945 cartoon Herr Meets Hare (where Bugs appears as a Wagnerian heroine dancing with Hermann Goering).
posted by scblackman at 7:18 AM PST - 23 comments

Ink-stained wretches need not apply. "This is probably terribly unfair, but I just never quite trusted a writer whose letterhead described him or her as a "wordsmith," a "scrivener," "écrivain" (with or without the diacritical), or an "ink-stained wretch." Nor was I favorably impressed by printed citations of honors received ("James Beard Award-Winner Biff Bartleby, Scrivener"). And kids, please, no personal logos: Above all, avoid cute drawings of kitty cats at laptops, or manly fists grasping ostrich-plume pens." And other things freelance writers should avoid. (From Mediabistro; registration may be required.)
posted by Man-Thing at 6:41 AM PST - 61 comments

You've read about him, seen the show, browsed the forum, consulted the wiki, heard the remixes, seen video1, video2 and even it's storyboard. Now please meet: Ray (29mb mov).
posted by progosk at 5:22 AM PST - 19 comments

The Envisat ENVIronmental SATellite is on its fifth year in orbit. To celebrate, ESA has assembled four galleries with selected images from the 500 tearabytes of data that has been collected to date. The pictures are of very different types, covering a wide variety of information, for example clorophyll concentration, global wave height, and an interferogram of the Bam earthquake. I personally think the ‘maximum water vapour mean’, in the atmosphere gallery is beautiful. Unfortunately the galleries are in flash so you cannot save the pics directly.
posted by Catfry at 5:10 AM PST - 12 comments

Creationwiki is an online encyclopedia concerning creation science in the spirit of Conservapedia (previously discussed here) and that serves as a sort of counterpart to Evowiki (previously mentioned in this thread). According to the article on Creationwiki found on Evowiki, "All contributing editors must believe the universe and life on earth were created by God. Non-creationists are prohibited from editing articles, except for spelling and grammar corrections." Of course, Creationwiki has their own article on Evowiki. It's entertaining to read their discussions about one another.
posted by inconsequentialist at 4:40 AM PST - 36 comments

Why I hate race baiting. SF Chroonicle columnist Debra J. Saunders wonders how did the "Why I hate blacks" column by Kenneth Eng that ran in AsianWeek Feb. 23 ever make it by the paper's editors? Previous columns by Kenneth Eng such as "Proof That Whites Inherently Hate Us" and "Why I hate Asians" sparked no Chronicle story and no City Hall resolution against AsianWeek. Both of these columns remain on the Asianweek website. But Eng's rant against blacks got him fired and resulted in an apology from the magazine's editors. Eng's final column has also been pulled from Asianweek's website.
posted by three blind mice at 2:30 AM PST - 103 comments

The Fonz & Henry Winkler teach us about sexual abuse. Yes, you read correctly.
Special appearances by John Ritter, Fred Flintstone, and a creepy singing guy in overalls.
posted by miss lynnster at 1:44 AM PST - 51 comments

The Peabody Symphony Orchestra and the Peabody Concert Orchestra have a wealth of classical recordings freely available for download - Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Haydn, Mahler, Borodin, Schumann, Stravinksy...
posted by algreer at 1:34 AM PST - 11 comments