Inform 7 Released. Inform is a language used for creating interactive fiction, and is one of the most widely used languages for this task. After several years of effort, Graham Nelson has released a new version of Inform, and is seeking to create a new way of creating IF, with natural language instead of traditional programming code. [more inside] posted by zabuni at 8:08 PM PST - 38 comments
...Bush has been aggressive about declaring his right to ignore vast swaths of laws -- many of which he says infringe on power he believes the Constitution assigns to him alone ...President Bush has quietly claimed the authority to disobey more than 750 laws enacted since he took office, asserting that he has the power to set aside any statute passed by Congress when it conflicts with his interpretation of the Constitution. ... Long, eyeopening article laying out what laws have been ignored and why. ...Bush has cast a cloud over 'the whole idea that there is a rule of law," because no one can be certain of which laws Bush thinks are valid and which he thinks he can ignore.
'Where you have a president who is willing to declare vast quantities of the legislation that is passed during his term unconstitutional, it implies that he also thinks a very significant amount of the other laws that were already on the books before he became president are also unconstitutional," ... posted by amberglow at 10:50 AM PST - 85 comments
This highlight reel of people playing the traditional Myanmar game of Chinlone is pretty amazing. Being a particularly ignorant westerner, I really had no idea of the grace & athleticism involved in the game. posted by jonson at 9:42 AM PST - 22 comments
Jimmy Jump. The guy who stormed the pitch and cheekily presented Thierry Henry with a Barcelona jersey during last week's Champion's League match versus Villareal has a website. Regardless of where you stand on pitch invaders, "there will be no way to remain indiferent in front of his universal cause of feeling implicated with what he does."
Night Writer (embedded .mov). "The night writer extends the functionality of LED throwies by allowing a writer to catch a tag in lights. It’s cheap, easy to make and writes 12-inch glowing letters 25-feet in the air on any iron or steel surface." From the Graffitti Research Lab. posted by zardoz at 10:11 PM PST - 21 comments
The Paradigm is the Enemy: A sobering but cogent account of the state of Peak Oil, what it's already led to (reported and ignored), and what is in store for us in the near future. The worst part is the political impossibility of addressing the problem constructively: that would require acknowledging the problem. posted by LeisureGuy at 5:01 PM PST - 99 comments
Camille Paglia How should the humanities be taught, and how should scholars in the humanities be trained? These pivotal questions confront universities today amid signs of spreading agreement that the three-decade era of poststructuralism and postmodernism is over. posted by vronsky at 4:04 PM PST - 72 comments
Freedom of the seas World,s largest passenger liner, currently docked in Southampton UK, in prep for voyage to New York. Then a life of cruising the Carib. 15m wider than the QM2
Check out the flash tour. posted by A189Nut at 3:06 AM PST - 56 comments
"Every year on 4/20, students and residents gather on Farrand Field at CU Boulder to defy the authorities and smoke marijuana publicly. This year, the University of Boulder Police Department fought back by taking pictures of as many participants as possible. They have a website with photos up, offering an $50 reward to anyone who positively identifies someone who was photographed." via BoingBoing
Here are 3 local news stories about it: 1, 2, 3.
I guess the police want to identify people even if they were not visalby commiting a crime, just so they can bring them in and apply pressure root out the real criminals.
This area seems radically divided. When my family recently visited Colorado Springs we found it very right-wing but when we engaged a rubber boat trip through the Royal George all of our guides were hippie/eco/stoners.
A new book collecting unpublished poems of Elizabeth Bishop offers us unpolished views of work in progress, by one of the 20th century's greatest literary perfectionists. But in doing so, it raises again "An issue as old as the printed word: Is work that a writer chose not to publish during her lifetime fair game after she dies?" [more inside] posted by paulsc at 11:11 PM PST - 7 comments
Workplace health and safety dirty dozen (pdf) - profiles of companies that have demonstrated egregious disregard for worker safety. Today is Worker Memorial Day, commemorating workers who die on the job - an average of 16 per day. Workplace deaths are trending up, not down, which, according to an extensive report by the AFL-CIO, is the inevitable Toll of Neglect with this administration's rollback of worker protections. Confined Space offers a daily view of work safety issues in the U.S. for those who would like to learn more. posted by madamjujujive at 6:16 AM PST - 13 comments
The songs of the Pete Seeger Sessions presents an ultra-detailed listing of prior recordings of the songs included in Bruce Springsteen's excellent "We shall overcome" album, a majestic tribute to the American musical tradition, with some songs written over two centuries ago. The site lists more than 1,560 eariler recordings, by nearly as many artists, with some full-length audio clips included.
Aft posted by keepoutofreach at 7:32 PM PST - 32 comments
Two years after the Abu Ghraib scandal, new research shows that abuse of detainees in U.S. custody in Iraq, Afghanistan, and at Guantánamo Bay has been widespread, and that the United States has taken only limited steps to investigate and punish implicated personnel. A briefing paper issued today, 'By the Numbers,' presents findings of the Detainee Abuse and Accountability Project... the first comprehensive accounting of credible allegations of torture and abuse in U.S. custody in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo. The project has collected hundreds of allegations of detainee abuse and torture occurring since late 2001 – allegations implicating more than 600 U.S. military and civilian personnel and involving more than 460 detainees.
Few things are more sacred to Canadians than the nation's medicare system. After years of health spending cutbacks by conservative politicians, debate rages over whether private providers should now be allowed to compete with the public system. In British Columbia, where the government is shovelling tax dollars into the 2010 Olympics, patients are being left todie in emergency rooms and long-term care facilities due to overcrowding and understaffing. Is it too late to save public health care? Should it be saved? posted by 327.ca at 12:00 PM PST - 89 comments
The Endless Forest is a strange piece of software (that can be a screensaver), where you control a deer in a, well, endless forest. And so do a bunch of other online players. And you can interact all you like with them - with the minor caveat that deer can't talk. posted by DataPacRat at 11:28 AM PST - 46 comments
Better Comix The concept behind this is to use comics from the same day and mix them, good ol cut and paste style, so that they become a tad more funny, depending on your sense of humor. posted by jasonspaceman at 11:15 AM PST - 16 comments
Re-Mission is a 3rd-person shooter designed for teens and young adults with cancer, developed by HopeLab and RealTime Associates. Players pilot a nanobot, Roxxi, through the
body of a fictional cancer patient to destroy cancer cells and infections. The Re-Mission Outcomes Study enrolled 375 teens and young adults with cancer, randomized them to receive a computer with the game or without. Data from the study showed statistically significant improvements in cancer-related self-efficacy, social quality of life, cancer-specific knowledge, and adherence to prescribed medication regimens in patients who played Re-Mission. The game (and related online community) is free of charge to teens and young people living with cancer and will be available to others in May at a suggested donation of $20. (related) posted by sarahnade at 10:33 AM PST - 13 comments
Adult Swim Fix. Streaming full-length Adult Swim episodes twenty-four hours a day online. Seven archival episodes will be available at all times, while premieres will continue to debut on Fridays, two days before they appear on-air. posted by ND¢ at 7:16 AM PST - 24 comments
Jesus with Erection. In its March edition, the Insurgent (link down), an "alternative" student paper on the Eugene, Ore., campus printed 12 hand-drawn cartoons of Jesus as a response to rival paper the Commentator having published the controversial cartoons of Muhammad originally published in Europe that sparked Muslim riots worldwide. William Donohue, president of the Catholic League, called it "one of the most obscene assaults on Christianity I have ever seen."
Hey now! posted by three blind mice at 1:01 AM PST - 89 comments
Hands to Boag A love song about web standards with lyrics like, "Tonight I need your CSS, coding in the darkness. From now on no more tables nest; you will meet web standards"... posted by londontube at 8:51 PM PST - 3 comments
“Smithy code” The secret lies in HBHG and DVC. According to news reports the Judge who recently ruled in the Da Vinci Code plagiarism case has included his own code in his high court ruling (PDF). At this time, no one seems to have decoded it all... posted by tiamat at 6:06 PM PST - 39 comments
In the murky world of HYIP (high-yield investment programs), on the wrong side of the Internet tracks, Team Aaron and Shara were very well known. They had tens of thousands of fans, eager to know which programs were still paying 1-2% per day (or more!). Now their fans will have to resort to other sites to see who is still paying. Curiously, these programs only seem to take anonymous, non-disputable forms of e-payment, such as e-gold. Now, all that is left of them is their farewell website. Did they retire on all of the referral fees, as some suspect? It is impressive that such effort is dedicated to this snake oil, but the law of large numbers must make it work. Who can resist 1.5% an hour return on investment? Is this what has become of anonymous micropayments? posted by Adamchik at 2:38 PM PST - 19 comments
Stock Spam Effectiveness Monitor Spam comes in, graphs come out. You are not buying stock based on spam, but surely someone must be, or else you wouldn't be flooded with more spam everyday. This tracks one user's inbox and the stocks spammed therein. A bit more analysis here and here posted by mikepop at 11:02 AM PST - 11 comments
From colorfulEugene, Oregon, comes the new independent film HIPPIES about a group of folks who have not given up their values or their vices, and set about saving the earth. Trailer here. (Note release date.)
The new DMCA: the Intellectual Property Protection Act of 2006The 24-page bill is a far-reaching medley of different proposals cobbled together. One would, for instance, create a new federal crime of just trying to commit copyright infringement. Such willful attempts at piracy, even if they fail, could be punished by up to 10 years in prison. posted by beth at 8:07 AM PST - 36 comments
The Ninth Circuit (maligned by many as a hotbed of extreme
liberal judicial activism, butdefended by others PDF) issued its opinion in the case
of Harper v. Poway Unified School District last week. Judge Stephen Reinhardt - who, to some people, embodies
the allegedevils of the Ninth Circuit - issued the majority opinion, and Judge Alex Kozinski filed a strong dissent. The majority opinion held that a high school
principal who ordered a student to remove his T-shirt that said "Homosexuality is Shameful" did
not violate the student's First Amendment rights, reasoning that "limitations on speech" are
permissible in cases where speech is "derogatory and injurious remarks directed at students'
minority status such as race religion and sexual orientation," and the limitation is "narrow, and
applied with sensitivity and for reasons that are consistent with the fundamental First Amendment
mandate." [more inside] posted by Pontius Pilate at 1:36 AM PST - 152 comments
Let me tell you what we're gonna do. We're gonna put them handcuffs in front of ya. Cut you a little slack. But if you don't start operating, we're gonna put the mother fuckers behind your back, and I'm gonna take this slapjack and I'm gonna start working that head over, you understand? ...you sign this son of a bitch, or I'm gonna hit you again.
Audio. .pdf transcript. Full Story. posted by Kwantsar at 11:05 PM PST - 60 comments
It is an official language in this US State, and if somebody writes you a check in it while you're here, you better know your numbers. Although its usage fell after a sharp decrease in the native speakers' population and a later 'ban', (not really) in the late 19th century, it is now making a comeback. Wikipedia gets its name from the language. Sadly, though there are almost 4 million Wikipedia articles, a scant 27 of them are written in it. Of course, if you just need a dictionary, it's not hard to find. posted by onalark at 10:32 PM PST - 20 comments
What it costs to live well in the United States. According to Forbes, living well for a family of four in New York City requires an annual income of $483,800, compared to $189,923 in Wichita, Kansas. Of course, living well, according to the methodology, involves a vacation home, a BMW 325i and a Lexus RX 330, weekends at the Ritz, and almost no savings, so you might want to skip one of these things if you are a few bucks shy. Also worth noting, the most expensive ZIP codes and houses in the United States (and the world). Are you living well? posted by blahblahblah at 7:43 PM PST - 83 comments
I've been grooving on some of the music of Persone a lot lately (some full-length mp3 samples here). They're one of the most noticeable Esperanto 'rokbandoj', though by all means not the only one. I'm fond of Jomo kaj Liberecanoj (sample in Spanish, Esperanto, and French) as well. Of course, Esperanto isn't the only constructed language with some music; there apparently is a CD in Klingon (you only hear samples), and some song translations and info about a CD here, and there is also a bit of recorded music in Elvish (scroll down to "Elvish Music"). But most of it seemsto be in Esperanto. posted by graymouser at 5:46 PM PST - 3 comments
Tony Snow On President Bush: ‘An Embarrassment,’ It seems clear now that we will have Snow In Late April as the Bush appointment to be the new press spokesman. Snow comes to the lawn of the White House all the way from Fox News, where he represented their view of Fair and balanced. So balanced in fact that he said things such as this: "“No president has looked this impotent this long when it comes to defending presidential powers and prerogatives.” [9/30/05]. But that was then and this is now and so can we assume that suddenly Bush will be seen as a masterful leader of his nation? posted by Postroad at 4:23 PM PST - 63 comments
LabLit.com is about scientists, but not so much about science. In the most recent update is an interview with Daniel Glaser about his involvement behind the scenes of the BBC documentary Under Laboratory Conditions.
Older articles on LabLit.com are about iPods in the lab, sex in the lab, basically anything besides science that still relates to lab life.
"LabLit" is short for "lab literature", and the about page explains the connection between the two and the idea behind the site. posted by easternblot at 3:53 PM PST - 6 comments
From estate tax to 'death tax' Public Citizen released a report [PDF link] today that "reveals how 18 families worth a total of $185.5 billion have financed and coordinated a 10-year effort to repeal the [U.S.] estate tax, a move that would collectively net them a windfall of $71.6 billion." The rich get richer... posted by tippiedog at 3:41 PM PST - 73 comments
Where do your recycleables go? Minneapolis' Star Tribune has created a very interesting, informative, interactive feature, describing where your recycling goes after it is picked up from your curb. An educational way to spend your afternoon! posted by santiagogo at 10:46 AM PST - 14 comments
FollowupFilter - After a two year hiatus (read: punishment ban), Gregg Easterbrook (founder of Beliefnet, Brookings scholar, ex of Slate & NFL.com) one of ESPN's most popular football writers returns, with no acknoledgment of where he went or why. Hopefully he'll keep his mouth shut about ABC and/or Disney related projects this time. As a side note, his two seasons worth of back articles are apparently not available, as they were purged (permanently?) when he was fired. posted by jonson at 10:00 AM PST - 16 comments
"Turn it off man, I don't want no problems." Democracy Now attempts to interview Katrina evacuees at a FEMA trailer park. FEMA's private security guards claim that the residents don't have 'the privilege' of being able to speak freely on FEMA property without a FEMA 'minder' present. posted by empath at 8:38 AM PST - 64 comments
There are plenty of contests whose purpose is to pick out the best looking dog, or flowers or various other things. But what about the ugliest? These sites and contests bring you the ugliest cars, dogs, celebrities (YMMV), buildings in Ann Arbor, MI, and those bastions of cuteness, babies. posted by darsh at 7:53 AM PST - 16 comments
Top Knots Weddings, no matter how grand, are comprised of many intimate, unforgettable moments, and wedding photographers have just one chance to capture them. The judges of this year's Top Knots competition felt that the work featured in this online gallery succeeded in preserving these moments in a creative and innovative way. posted by ColdChef at 7:36 AM PST - 32 comments
"For years people laughed at me. But my dream reoccured so often that I was sure that one day the yellow gnomes would visit our planet with a very special message for us. Now I am not alone anymore."These yellow gnomes have apparently appeared all over NW Europe. Today a fresh batch was discovered in Abcoude, Netherlands (in Dutch). And yes, of course there is a forum. Art or crazy? posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:04 AM PST - 26 comments
Abraham Lincoln, duelist?Hamilton and Burr were not the only prominent duelists in US history. In the early morning hours of September 22, 1842, a young Abraham Lincoln crossed the Mississippi River at Alton, IL on his way to a small island where he would engage in mortal combat with a political adversary. Lincoln had used his sarcastic wit to write anonymous letters to the editor lampooning a political rival, James Shields. Some of his friends joined in and perhaps went a little too far, including suggestions of Shields' inadequacies with the ladies. One of these friends included Lincoln's future wife, Mary Todd. Shields demanded a duel and Lincoln defined the parameters of the duel - broadswords in a pit. posted by caddis at 4:16 PM PST - 46 comments
Air France: Apparently abandoning any pretence that traveling economy in the back of an A330 is an enticing experience, they've launched this site which looks back at the days when women wore fur, men smoked pipes and air travel was glamorous.
Quite a few nice little movie vignettes of life chez Air France from the ‘50’s and ‘60’s. posted by marvin at 2:46 PM PST - 22 comments
"Killing the Buddha is about finding a way to be religious when we're all so self-conscious and self-absorbed. Knowing more than ever about ourselves and the way the world works, we gain nothing through nostalgia for a time when belief was simple, and even less from insisting that now is such a time. Killing the Buddha will ask, How can we be religious without leaving part of ourselves at the church or temple door? How can we love God when we know it doesn't matter if we do? Call it God for the godless. Call it the search for a God we can believe in: A God that will not be an embarrassment in twelve-thousand years. A God we can talk about without qualifications." I particularly enjoyed The Temptation of Belief, by a Buddhist exploring evangelical Christianity, and My Holy Ghost People, by an unbelieving daughter in a praying-in-tongues family. posted by heatherann at 12:26 PM PST - 21 comments
Boycotts : politics and corportate powerHispanic News on a call to boycott Kimberley Clark (Kleenex, Scott, Huggies, etc...) as the corporate member behind Wisconsin Rep. James Sensenbrenner "author/sponsor of HR 4437 which would turn 11 million undocumented immigrants into felons, punish anyone guilty of providing them assistance" and more. What's the real story here?
Boycotts, are they still effective? How much of a link (symbolic or otherwise) is there between this legislation and the company? None? A little? A lot? posted by dorcas at 11:31 AM PST - 43 comments
Cameratruck. What do you get when you cross a pinhole camera with a truck? You get the world's largest mobile camera, and perhaps the only camera that is its own darkroom (at least on wheels!). The cameratruck is currently travelling Spain in a trip that will culminate in an exhibit at PHotoEspaña. posted by Robot Johnny at 9:51 AM PST - 15 comments
Dangerous Men (embedded video, sound) A film started in the 70's/80's, finished in the 90's and unleased in 2005. Variety said, "Dangerous Men by John S. Rad will strike horror in the hearts of anyone." trailer (nsfw, mpeg) posted by phirleh at 7:37 AM PST - 32 comments
Version 2.1 of the Web is now available, featuring significant improvements over the older 2.0 version. The most significant upgrade is that there is now support for the server-side blink tag.
Mad props to Jimbob posted by signal at 8:46 PM PST - 29 comments
The 1970s Russian main street was filled with small, grimy stores stocked with ethnic food and kept by unfriendly laconic storekeepers. However, since then this "closed world, one full of sour looks, suspicion, and hopelessly outdated
fashion" has disappeared. [more inside] posted by gregb1007 at 6:37 PM PST - 15 comments
The Laws of Identity was a white paper written about a year ago by Kim Cameron, chief Identity and Access Architect for Microsoft. In it, he described a set of laws meant to govern the next generation of access control on the internet (also of note is his discussion about the failure of Passport). These ideas eventually evolved into Infocard, Microsoft's specific implementation of the laws, and a key software component of a larger identity metasystem that Microsoft proposes to introduce. The implications of this are very real, and quite sweeping in magnitude, as this infrastructure might one day be able to completely replace the current "login/password" type of access control system. [more inside] posted by Drunken_munky at 11:57 PM PST - 37 comments
Cool (windows only) bit of software to allow those reading (with Windows pcs, wireless networks, itunes & a PSP) to stream their mp3 libraries over their wireless network to their PSP. I know this probably doesn't apply to too many people here, but hopefully those to whom it does find it useful. posted by jonson at 2:46 PM PST - 18 comments
Until the collapse of the Soviet Union Balaklava was one of the most secret towns in Russia. 10km south east of Sevastopol on the Black Sea Coast, this small town was the home to a Nuclear Submarine Base. via BLDBLOG posted by signal at 2:05 PM PST - 21 comments
CIA warned White House -- no WMD programs in Iraq. A retired senior CIA official interviewed by 60 Minutes claims that the White House ignored intelligence from Iraq's foreign minister, Naji Sabri in the run-up to the invasion. CIA Director George Tenet delivered the information to President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney and other high-ranking officials in September 2002, according to the CIA official. A few days later the administration said it was no longer interested. "...we said 'Well, what about the intel?' And they said 'Well, this isn't about intel anymore. This is about regime change.' "
The interview airs on CBS, Sunday at 7 p.m. ET/PT. posted by insomnia_lj at 1:19 PM PST - 59 comments
Pixel noise identifies digital cameras. Every original digital picture is overlaid by a weak noise-like pattern of pixel-to-pixel non-uniformity. Although these patterns are invisible to the human eye, the unique reference pattern or "fingerprint" of any camera can be electronically extracted by analyzing a number of images taken by a single camera. Fridrich's lab analyzed 2,700 pictures taken by nine digital cameras and with 100 percent accuracy linked individual images with the camera that took them. [via Arstechnica] posted by Termite at 8:42 AM PST - 24 comments
CIA Officer Fired for Leaking Classified Info to Media Newsfilter. The president, we are told, leaked via Libby a secret to the press. That is ok. The leak was telling the press that laws were being broken--FISA subverted--so that undermining national laws becomes a crime only when it is revealed? A CIA officer has been relieved of his duty after being caught leaking classified information to the media.
Citing the Privacy Act, the CIA would not provide any details about the officer's identity or assignments. posted by Postroad at 2:52 PM PST - 36 comments
Big Bang for the MegaVerse?Palladium Books, publishers of the once wildly popular Rifts roleplaying game, may be going out of business. For a while things were looking up for the company, with a promising videogame and potential Jerry Bruckheimer movie in the works. Unfortunately, the game was slated for the now largely irrelevant Nokia N-Gage system and Bruckheimer's never been given a Rifts script he liked.
Owner and president Kevin Siembieda, reeling from a 7 figure betrayal from within the ranks and deep in debt after sinking thousands of dollars of his own money into the company, turns to the internet for help. posted by JaredSeth at 12:06 PM PST - 44 comments
The BBC reports that twenty years on "the exclusion zone around the Chernobyl nuclear power station is teeming with life." Lynx, eagle owl, wild boars, horses, wolves—even signs of bears which haven't been seen here in centuries.
British scientist and environmentalist James Lovelock (recently discussed here) speculates whether "small volumes of nuclear waste from power production should be stored in tropical forests and other habitats in need of a reliable guardian against their destruction by greedy developers."
Lovelock describes Chernobyl as "a nasty accident that took 45 lives." This article in the New Scientist claims that that the death toll may ultimately reach 60,000. posted by 327.ca at 8:26 AM PST - 49 comments
Einstein TOR DVD is a mostly animated feature film from the early 1920s, long thought to be lost, featuring animation from the incredible Max Fleischer (who is responsible for the seriously cool Superman animated cartoons). For $15, looks like a must-have for animation buffs and science geeks. posted by dbiedny at 4:31 AM PST - 17 comments
Moon River from Breakfast at Tiffany's was one of those songs that I grew up with. It had few words and was especially written for Audrey Hepburn's limited range, making it easy to sing along to. Unfortunately the version I'd most like to hear, by Morrisey, doesn't seem to be working at the moment. Highlights of those I've listened to so far are Kid Koala and Nan Vernon (Japanese). posted by tellurian at 10:48 PM PST - 52 comments
Is this the troll to end all trolls? It purports to be a list of "reichwingers" (sic) with their home addresses, but closer investigation shows that all the addresses given belong to car parts stores. So who was the intended target of this hoax? Left, right, or maybe everyone? posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 5:23 PM PST - 80 comments
Though JAWS scared the bejezus out of almost everybody and spread around the notion that sharks are grizzly agents of mindless revenge (this link possibly NSFW), they are, in fact, quite vulnerable to human activities (this doesn't make the prospect of being eaten alive while swimming any less scary). NOAA has some good fact sheets to help dispel what unreasonable fears you may have of these much maligned creatures, and if that doesn't do it, maybe this'll help. posted by Pecinpah at 2:32 PM PST - 20 comments
Rollback. Media critic Jay Rosen rises above the McClellan/"shake-up" foofaraw to put several pieces of the puzzle together and show how the Bush administration has significantly altered the long-standing relationship of the press to the White House. (More from Rosen here.) Another piece that fits: Donald Rumsfeld's bold, frequent, and rarely-challenged assertions that the American press is being expertly "manipulated" by Al Qaeda "media committees" in Iraq and Afghanistan. posted by digaman at 12:58 PM PST - 19 comments
MooTube: Along with activities like chomping grass, flicking flies, mooing and hanging out at the watering hole, the cow-cams capture such fun-loving antics as stealing snacks from the human production crew to roaming the fields in search of the best siesta spot. With spring in the air, alert viewers may catch a glimpse of cattle locking horns in the heat of pixilated romance. Press Release Here posted by thisisdrew at 12:35 PM PST - 11 comments
Developing black and white film at home just got much cheaper. It's possible to develop film using tea, coffee, or even vitamin C. To avoid being called a fustian photography nerd, call it caffenol (or caffeinol, but not that caffeinol). posted by nomad at 7:33 AM PST - 20 comments
Gay and Muslim groups getting together in the UK? plans are to look at homophobia in the Muslim community and Islamophobia in the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The Muslim Council of Britain is also admitting that if you have nothing positive to say keep your mouth shut, which is a very good first step. Can two groups often on the receiving end of hatred work together ? “British Muslims welcome working with everyone including members of the Lesbian and Gay community against a common enemy, fascism.” I don't know if they have the likes of Michael Savage there (or the many many others), who rail against (and call for the death of) both Muslims and gays on the airwaves daily, but it seems hopeful, no? posted by amberglow at 7:23 PM PST - 29 comments
"The job is waiting--there is no other job to do. ... Daniel Webster in the middle of the nineteenth century refused the vice presidential nomination saying 'he did not propose to be buried until he was already dead,' and Theodore Roosevelt at the beginning of the twentieth century accepted it but said he was 'taking the veil' and considered going back to finish law school to occupy his spare time." The American Prospect investigates the workings of Cheney's Office of the Vice President and discusses its unprecedented power. A stark contrast with the traditional role of the vice president. posted by russilwvong at 3:13 PM PST - 19 comments
JetBlue Airlines' Route map has a little trick up its sleeve. When the Flash Route Map loads - click on a city, then hold down your computer's SHIFT key and then type the letters P B J.
You will be....surprised. I know I was. posted by metaxa at 3:05 PM PST - 91 comments
The Purple Party Why can’t we have a serious, innovative, truth-telling, pragmatic party without any of the baggage of the Democrats and Republicans?
Where to draw the line is mostly a matter of common sense. Public reminders to honor one’s parents and love one’s neighbor, and not to lie, steal, or commit adultery or murder? Fine. Genesis taught as science in public schools, and government cosmologists forced by their PR handlers to give a shout-out to creationism? No way. Kids who want to wear crucifixes or yarmulkes or head scarves to those same schools? Sure, why not? And so on. posted by frogan at 2:29 PM PST - 36 comments
When the Mongols invaded Russia in the 13th century, legend has it that when they reached the northern city of Kitezh, the citizens, rather than defending themselves, "engaged in fervent praying, asking god for their redemption. On seeing this, the Mongols rushed to the attack, but then stopped. Suddenly, they saw countless fountains of water bursting from under the ground all around them. The attackers fell back and watched the town submerge into the lake." Ever since, Kitezh has provided Russians "a platform for imagining what their culture might have been like, had it not been stamped by authoritarian rule." And it gave Rimsky-Korsakov the plot of his opera the Tale of the Invisible City of Kitezh. [More inside.] posted by languagehat at 1:46 PM PST - 22 comments
British scientists discover men's decision making skills can be compromised by a beautiful woman. I suppose this isn't much of a surprise, since "The Cheerleader Effect" has been reported on before [NYT]. The study also showed that testosterone levels also played a part, the more testosterone, the more pronounced the effect was. posted by SirOmega at 11:25 AM PST - 59 comments
Virtual Tresspassing is yet another Google maps mashup, but one of the minority (at least that I have found) that let you add markers of your own that are persistent and visible to others. Is it at all useful? Who cares, I was a cute kid and I don't have to risk PMITA prison like a common street tagger - I can be leet and from da streetz while remaining a pasty-faced geek. posted by phearlez at 10:20 AM PST - 10 comments
How were you circumcised? A fascinating discussion of circumcision scar styles left by the different methods of circumcision. (NSFW, penis photos, slightly gruesome discussion of circumcision methods.) posted by agropyron at 8:52 AM PST - 165 comments
Whole Tree Shredding. This is not your average rotary mulcher. Watch the "SLASHBUSTER"® HD 480B chew through 10-14 inch diameter trees with ease. No auxiliary engine is necessary. Horsepower-for-horsepower this is the highest performance tree shredder available. posted by Falconetti at 7:41 AM PST - 62 comments
FT Report Oh dear, I had high hopes that Skype would hold out. Still, I guess they are telling us. Can anyone find the list of banned words in the TOM client? posted by priorpark17 at 12:27 AM PST - 22 comments
On January 1st, 2006, Bryan Harvey was murdered along with his wife and two young daughters in the basement of their Virginia home. Smoke issuing from the house was spotted by Johnny Hott, Harvey's bandmate in the terrific, late-80s duo House of Freaks. The fire was apparently started by the killers in an attempt to cover up the evidence. By all accounts the Harveys were a well-liked family whose loss has left a city stunned and saddened. Bryan once remarked, "I have a lot of faith in humans. I believe we're capable of incredibly beautiful things (as well as incredibly evil)." Unfortunately the truth of that statement has become readily apparent. (more inside) posted by ktoad at 10:26 PM PST - 20 comments
Hugo Chavez to Carlos the Jackal: "My doctor has told me that my spirit must nourish itself on danger to preserve my sanity, in the manner that God intended, with this stormy revolution to guide me in my great destiny. posted by semmi at 12:37 PM PST - 59 comments
Equidistant Eats lets you find restaurants that are centrally located to two or three locations. Just enter at least two addresses and click "Submit." Street address, city and state are required. ZIP Code is optional. posted by jonson at 8:47 AM PST - 16 comments
In the US there are three major forms of manual communication ASL (American Sign Language, PSE (Pidgin Signed English or Contact), and SEE (Signing Exact English). Translating from English to any one of these is hard enough. That's not stopping this team from trying taking on the added challenge of a machine translation. I can't imagine them doing half as well as this man's efforts at live translating rap, switching between all three variants (video, with voice over). posted by plinth at 7:06 AM PST - 9 comments
Star Wars Kid Finally Gets Settlement Claiming to have been unable to attend school on account of being more famous than the kid who played the real Anakin Skywalker, Ghyslain "Star Wars Kid" Raza (original thread) finally gets his cut off of the three kids responsible for making sure he'll never, ever get a date.
Sadly, the situation got so bad Ghyslain "let himself go and no longer lifted weights to keep fit."
So much for a sequel. posted by TheFarSeid at 6:47 AM PST - 77 comments
Evolution timeline (Embedded .swf). This animated story of life since about 13,700,000,000 shows everything from the big bang to the formation of the earth and the development of bacteria and other organisms to the ascent of man and humans effect on the earth. Other work discussed one year ago yesterday, what an evolution! (The animation is pretty large, you may have to scroll your screen, or just open the .swf directly) posted by pithy comment at 6:21 AM PST - 21 comments
The Birth of a Queer Nation. Determined to build a better world for future generations, the founding fathers and mothers set sail on 14 June 2004 in the Gayflower until they were washed ashore on the uninhabited Coral Islands. With the strains of Gloria Gaynor filling the tropical air, they hoisted the rainbow flag above the palm trees and white, sandy beaches. The Gay and Lesbian Kingdom of the Coral Sea Islands was born. posted by Falconetti at 1:03 AM PST - 55 comments
"In 1953, while working a hotel switchboard, a college graduate named Shea Zellweger began a journey of wonder and obsession that would eventually lead to the invention of a radically new notation for logic. From a basement in Ohio, guided literally by his dreams and his innate love of pattern, Zellweger developed an extraordinary visual system - called the “Logic Alphabet” - in which a group of specially designed letter-shapes can be manipulated like puzzles to reveal the geometrical patterns underpinning logic." posted by vacapinta at 11:06 PM PST - 30 comments
Today in weird animals : An international group of scientists has described an animal that provides nutrition for its young by letting them peel off and eat its skin. posted by Afroblanco at 10:31 PM PST - 30 comments
The pleasure of finding things out. If you only watch one documentary on the subject of science this year, let is be this one. The brilliant physicist Richard Feynman is interviewed about a host of issues, such as [more inside]. posted by koenie at 3:22 PM PST - 46 comments
Double Read This: Revolution! The Epsilon Rising seeks the BEST DRUMMER EVER!
They should be 1)AWESOME; 2)TOTALLY INTO US; 3) ETHNIC (but if not, that's cool, man) 4) POT SMOKERS...
At least they like Hawkwind. posted by klangklangston at 12:46 PM PST - 62 comments
Small town girl killed by meth dealer. It was a story that we talked about before. A Meth dealer admitted to tying up a little girl in order to 'scare' her into silence about his lab. The girl died. There's only one problem though, it didn't happen, the confession was false, and DNA evidence linked another man to the crime, who has since been charged. According to Al Roker, though, Meth is still to blame, for causing 'hallucinations' and 'dementia' rather then police pressure to confess regardless of actual guilt. posted by delmoi at 11:59 AM PST - 44 comments
D.C. Loses "Superboy" Copyright Battle. On March 23, 2006, the Ninth Circuit District Court ruled that the wife and daughter of "Superman" co-creator Jerry Siegel -- not D.C. Comics -- owned the copyright to "Superboy," beginning retroactively as of November 17, 2004. He additionally opined (but did not rule) that the "Smallville" television series infringes on their copyright. posted by WCityMike at 11:04 AM PST - 38 comments
creativehighschoolmusic.net is a website featuring the Brookline High School Jazz Band. It is designed to encourage collaborative, creative musicianship among students. It contains video and audio of performances and original compositions, as well as video of the Jazz Band's creative process, music lessons, and some podcasts. posted by rxrfrx at 8:05 AM PST - 3 comments
A Feminist Gaming Manifesto. (And part 2 is here.) "So wait, you’re wondering, maybe, why don’t these crazy men-folk just do that? I think the answer is actually pretty straightforward. People who themselves feel marginalized can’t bear the thought that they could be in a position of power wherein they could hurt someone in the same way that they feel hurt. Who out there hasn’t felt terribly marginalized? What happens, then, is there’s this conflation of “you’re doing something that makes me feel excluded or hurt” with “you’re a bad, bad man like those people with the bitch shirts.” You can’t handle that thought, so you try desperately to prove that it’s not the case. Guilt, or fear that you might be guilty, never did anybody any good." posted by Bryan Behrenshausen at 4:59 PM PST - 87 comments
JamesJesseStrang - The "King" of Beaver Island. On the twenty-seventh day of June, 1844, at five and a half o'clock in the afternoon, James J. Strang was in the Spirit, and the Angel of God came unto him and saluted. Although members of his Mormon breakaway sect mortally wounded the King for being too strict, his church and works live on. posted by Falconetti at 4:33 PM PST - 11 comments
My Favorite Wasteland. "Need more reasons to stay home? You could probably find them sitting in the row behind you. Many members of the contemporary movie audience, only marginally socialized, would have made a misanthrope of Gandhi... Grownups who do choose to remain at home with the remote--and I often count myself among them, not a TV enthusiast exactly, but certainly a sympathist--have no reason to apologize. TV can now teach Hollywood something about smarts." [via] posted by digaman at 4:00 PM PST - 25 comments
the "Second Liberation of Baghdad" --coming soon, in which we act as "enforcers", providing "protection" --...American and Iraqi troops would move from neighbourhood to neighbourhood, leaving behind Sweat teams — an acronym for “sewage, water, electricity and trash” — to improve living conditions by upgrading clinics, schools, rubbish collection, water and electricity supplies.
Sunni insurgent strongholds are almost certain to be the first targets, although the Shi’ite militias such as the Mahdi army of Moqtada al-Sadr, the radical cleric, and the Iranian-backed Badr Brigade would need to be contained. ... Will we be greeted with candy and flowers again as well? posted by amberglow at 3:11 PM PST - 65 comments
It's F'ing Dethklok! Also known as Death Klok Metacolpyse, this cartoon from the creator of Home Movies will debut 20 episodes on Cartoon Network in August. It's been called "Spinal Tap meets Scooby Doo meets Norway, and will feature guest appearances by metal superstars. It'll be months before the high decibel violence and comedy commences, meanwhile comedy and metal nerds can see this 82 second leak. posted by Blingo at 1:38 PM PST - 23 comments
Speak softly, don't argue and slow down' The reputation of the "Ugly American" abroad is not..... just some cruel stereotype, but - according to the American government itself - worryingly accurate. Now, the State Department has joined forces with American industry to plan an image make-over by issuing guides for Americans travelling overseas on how to behave. posted by terrymiles at 12:59 PM PST - 96 comments
"Livin' with war everyday": Alicia Morgan was one of about 100 singers summoned Wednesday to a secret recording session in Los Angeles. "When the lyrics we were supposed to sing flashed on the giant screen," she writes on her blog, "a roar went up from the choir. I'm not going to give the whole thing away, but the first line of one of the songs was "Let's impeach the President for lyin'!" Get ready: Neil Young's gota newalbumcoming. posted by docgonzo at 7:26 AM PST - 191 comments
Before the Big Bang - way, way out of my depth, but I thought this comment was intriguing: "The paper as published, along with a longer follow up paper, looks to my untrained eye a nearly complete quantum gravitation theory, which is an exciting prospect in itself. However, as with all physical theories, we will await for experimental support before popping the cork." Here's some more on loop quantum gravity, spin networks, the big bang and ekpyrosis. posted by kliuless at 7:25 AM PST - 18 comments
men who have sex with dolls The women's magazine Marie Claire is just getting the news that some men prefer life-size, wife-size companionship over "women of style and substance." more here ( not safe for work) posted by halekon at 1:36 PM PST - 163 comments
A Dramatic New Portrait of Leo Sayer"Leo Sayer is ebullient, passionate, and immensely talented. He is the ultimate people person, enthusiastically embracing life. A neighbour of his who is familiar with both my work and Leo's told me that Leo would be the perfect subject for a portrait. So I wrote and asked, it was as simple as that."
Sadly, Tony Johansen's portrait of Leo Sayer didn't win this year's Archibald Prize. Then again, neither did this. posted by Biblio at 8:55 AM PST - 19 comments
Samurai Kittens - 99% fun and hilarity watching little martial-artsified kittens die in horrifying ways, 1% ad for IFC's Samurai 7, an anime about Akiro Kurosawa's Seven Samurai. I don't normally go for this stuff, but all ya gotta do is mash a few buttons, and even I got to see all 9 "Furtalities" and enter the drawing for a dvd box set. Check out the fake ads, I won't spoil them for ya. posted by beth at 6:49 AM PST - 12 comments
October 20, 1991 - the Oakland Hills weathered a massive firestorm, destroying almost 2,500 homes and taking 25 lives. For many years, it remained the biggest urban disaster in US history. posted by drstein at 9:24 PM PST - 29 comments
San Francisco on Tuesday became the first major U.S. city to pass a resolution acknowledging the threats posed by peak oil. The resolution cites an influential study commissioned by the U.S. Dept. of Energy, known as the Hirsch Report, and proponents delivered copies of the The Oil Age Poster to elected officials in the run up to the vote. posted by stbalbach at 8:41 PM PST - 27 comments
Will algae defeat global warming? "Fed a generous helping of CO2-laden emissions, courtesy of the power plant's exhaust stack, the algae grow quickly... The cleansed exhaust bubbles skyward, but with 40 percent less CO2... The algae is harvested daily and a combustible vegetable oil is squeezed out: biodiesel". posted by reklaw at 5:10 PM PST - 55 comments
Famed for its unusually cinematic look (for the time), AnotherWorld is a classic vector-based game from the early 90s created by Eric Chahi. A new version with updated (but not too updated) graphics was released for Windows XP today; you can download a demo here. (direct link to 22MB installer .exe) posted by Armitage Shanks at 5:07 PM PST - 44 comments
One piece of paper. "It was an experiment to see how long it could last. Draw a comic, rub it off, and draw another over the top. Once it had finished, a second experiment was started on another piece of paper. Current data - one piece of paper can survive an average of 65 cartoons being drawn on it" [via mefi projects] posted by mathowie at 12:23 PM PST - 29 comments
Bible Dudes. I'm a Bible Scholar, a Scriptural caller,
I got a lot of books but not a lot of dollar.
Things from antiquity you know they be ravin',
I throw around words like sitz-im-leben,
A bazillion languages are cloggin' my head,
All of my heroes have been a long time dead.
Come on along now, all the Bibledudes' buddies,
Cuz Yo! We gonna rap BIBLICAL STUDIES! posted by ozomatli at 11:47 AM PST - 34 comments
Sitting in an evidence vault for the past seven years, seen by almost no one, the nearly-four-hour self-produced videotape posing, boasting and bitching of the Columbine shooters may soon be released to the public. Some of the victims' families have supported its release while others have opposed it. Is this a case of "cops controlling the information flow" or is it protecting the public from potential copycats? We report. You deride. posted by spock at 10:16 AM PST - 19 comments
MyBillOfRights.org. Project to post a Bill of Rights monument in every state capitol of the U.S. Sounds like a retaliation to the posting of the 10 Commandments, right? Wrong. It's a rally to organize and unite all Americans who believe this country was founded on one amazing document, this we refer to constantly as the guidelines to our freedom. posted by daq at 9:08 AM PST - 85 comments
Some interesting facts about domain names. The results of significant number crunching on 3.5GB of .com domain name records yield some intriguing stats - for example, did you know that every single permutation of three letter acronyms is already taken within the .com hierarchy? And that nearly 80% of four letter combinations (not actual words, but just random XSLA.com style gibberish) is reserved? 100% of the top 10,000 family names in America are also booked. posted by jonson at 8:32 AM PST - 46 comments
Rhapsody Distributes Their Music. So you're a blogger mentioning a song and wondering whether to link to iTunes or the Amazon album page? Link to Rhapsody: U.S. based listeners get to listen to 25 whole songs for free (per month). posted by Firas at 5:52 PM PST - 33 comments
The Great Failure of Wikipedia. Audio of a fascinating and at times hilarious 45-minute presentation by Jason Scott of textfiles.com on the politics and culture of Wikipedia, including tales of The Ninja, The Sex Offender and the Publisher, and the ongoing battle between the Inclusionists and the Deletionists. Will the Wikipedia become "an untenable Katamari-Damacy-like ball out of shit that rolls through the Internet"? (some language NSFW) posted by Armitage Shanks at 4:21 PM PST - 102 comments
Naked Melee Armageddon. You have roughly five seconds before the melee begins to load the screen with as many people as you can. When an alien and a human meet, they fight. They destroy each other with axes, explosions, ninja moves, electrocution, etc. No matter the outcome, both the winner and loser vanish. The only way to win is by outnumbering the enemy. [via] posted by ND¢ at 1:25 PM PST - 27 comments
The penis project. (NSFW) An art project by Sue Long. "At Long's house, penises are everywhere. Cluttering the bedroom floor, standing erect on bookshelves, sticking out of potted plants, sprinkled throughout her back yard. Everywhere you turn, a penis is staring at you." (via oink) posted by madamjujujive at 10:27 AM PST - 67 comments
"He teaches the students to read the music from within themselves." The annual Pop Concert at Dondero High School was a beloved institution from 1971-2006. Under the direction of music instructor Rick Hartsoe, the A Capella Choir and student instrumentalists presented 20 popular songs per concert: "ten full choir pieces chosen for their harmonic and instrumental interest, and ten solos of the students' choosing." Pieces from the last ten years included such unconventional classics as Maroon 5's "This Love," System of a Down's "Chop Suey" and "Down In A Hole" by Alice In Chains. Also included were works by Stevie Wonder, Boston, Weezer, P.O.D., Norah Jones, The Doobie Brothers and many more. Every Pop Concert ended -- perhaps appropriately -- with "Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In" from Hair.
March 2006 saw the last Pop Concert performed at Dondero High. Mr. Hartsoe has announced his retirement. And due to consolidation with a neighboring school, Dondero High itself is closing at the end of this school year. Thankfully, eight of those Pop Concerts (from 1995 to 2005) are available as downloadable 2-CD sets from Comfortstand (previously mentioned). Yes, for free. Convinced yet? Basically, if you were blown away by the likes of The Langley Music School Project (previously mentioned), this might just be right up your musical alley. posted by grabbingsand at 7:20 AM PST - 19 comments
Gregory Chaitin'sMeta Math! The Quest For Omega "Okay, what I was able to find, or construct, is a funny area of pure mathematics where things are true for no reason, they're true by accident... It's a place where God plays dice with mathematical truth. It consists of mathematical facts which are so delicately balanced between being true or false that we're never going to know, and so you might as well toss a coin." From Paradoxes of Randomness.
"In my opinion, Omega suggests that even though maths and physics are different, perhaps they are not as different as most people think. To put it bluntly, if the incompleteness phenomenon discovered by Gödel in 1931 is really serious — and I believe that Turing's work and my own work suggest that incompleteness is much more serious than people think — then perhaps mathematics should be pursued somewhat more in the spirit of experimental science rather than always demanding proofs for everything." From Omega and why maths has no Theory Of Everythings.
[previously, seealso, via] posted by MetaMonkey at 3:32 AM PST - 17 comments
We have flash drives. Three days after the Los Angeles Times broke the story of the US military secrets for sale at an Afghan bazaar, a reporter for the paper bought ($40) another computer drive sold openly outside the U.S. air base in Bagram, Afghanistan. The 1-gigabyte flash drive holds "what appears to be a trove of potentially sensitive American intelligence data, including the names, photographs and telephone numbers of Afghan spies informing on the Taliban and Al Qaeda, personal snapshots, Special Forces training manuals, records of direct action training missions in South America, along with numerous computer slide presentations and documents marked secret." Most documents are neither locked nor encrypted. But the good news is, some of them can't be opened without a password, and the Army is investigating anyway. (LAT BugMeNot) posted by PenguinBukkake at 1:37 AM PST - 58 comments
Passport is the name of a recently-launched blog written by the editors of Foreign Policy magazine, covering the same wide range of topics as the magazine itself does. Updated frequently and around the clock, informal and personal — I don't know if it's just because it's new, but they're doing a great job, and if you're a world politics and news junkie like me, it's fantastic. posted by blacklite at 8:35 PM PST - 9 comments
Answer to one of the most frequently unasked questions— What is Romo? Romo (Romantic Modernism) was an early '90s pop "movement" in England that Melody Maker claimed was going to save music, mostly from Oasis. How? Well, by reviving the true British spirit— Roxy Music, Manic Street Preachers (before one of 'em wandered off never seen again) and Duran Duran's wardrobe! Due to unfortunate timing issues (like that Melody Maker didn't wait for any of the bands to actually put out any music before declaring them saviors, and that they were 10 years too early to be Fischerspooner), Romo now only rates a two-word aside in All Music's entry on New Romantics.
While Romo vaguely had a "sound," that of croony Morrissey-lite synthpop often, there were hidden gems like the crunchy spiky Plastic Fantastic. Indulge your curiosity about this overlooked musical "genre" here and here (warning— Second link NSF people with aesthetic visual sense). posted by klangklangston at 7:40 PM PST - 33 comments
Bioprinting. "Sitting in a culture dish, a layer of chicken heart cells beats in synchrony. But this muscle layer was not sliced from an intact heart, nor even grown laboriously in the lab. Instead, it was "printed", using a technology that could be the future of tissue engineering." posted by semmi at 4:56 PM PST - 10 comments
Dinner? No, a show. "For most of her adult life, Erika Sunnegardh was the epitome of a frustrated performer in New York City. Her artistic vocation was singing, but to make ends meet she endured the usual drudgery - waiting on tables in the Bronx where she lives and working as a tour guide...If Ms Sunnegardh, who is 40, awoke yesterday wondering if she was in the middle of a wonderful dream, who could blame her? On Saturday, the unimaginable had happened: she had sung the starring role in Beethoven's Fidelio at the Metropolitan Opera." (via Waiter Rant) posted by melissa may at 4:19 PM PST - 15 comments
Ever thought about setttling down on a quiet farm? Possibly one in rural Wisconsin? How about one with a little history? Just because eBay pulled the auction doesn't mean it's not for sale. Great for the eccentric collector, I'd think. And there's a perfect band to play at the housewarming party. posted by tula at 11:31 AM PST - 11 comments
Argentina On Two Steaks A DayThe classic beginner's mistake in Argentina is to neglect the first steak of the day. You will be tempted to just peck at it or even skip it altogether, rationalizing that you need to save yourself for the much larger steak later that night. But this is a false economy, like refusing to drink water in the early parts of a marathon. posted by rxrfrx at 11:29 AM PST - 78 comments
Steven Staley was convicted of murder and sentenced to death in 1991. A few days before his execution in February, he was granted a stay because he was found to be incompetent, a paranoid schizophrenic. Today, the judge has ordered that he be forced to take his medication so he can be legally put to death. posted by Roger Dodger at 10:47 AM PST - 68 comments
A Powerful Lobby The Middle East scholar Martin Kramer takes on the various writers, sites, that proclaim that the American invasion of Iraq is but one more indication of the Jewish/Israeli Lobby influence in America.
One of the nuttiest passages in "The Israel Lobby," the co-production of professors Stephen Walt (Harvard) and John Mearsheimer (University of Chicago), occurs in the very first footnote. (It's in the full version, on the website of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.)... and, in addtion addresses our involvement in Iraq, caused, claim some, by "Jewish/Israeli interests." [more] posted by Postroad at 10:44 AM PST - 64 comments
Remember when US forces "found the weapons of mass destruction?" That announcement was made by President Bush on May 29, 2003 -- one day after this CIA Intelligence assessment was published. In the weeks following, reports emerged that disputed the CIA's findings. Now, three years later, the Washington Post says that the US Intelligence authorities already had "powerful evidence" that Bush's biological weapons claim was simply untrue. posted by 327.ca at 9:13 AM PST - 73 comments
Austria's AEIOU has bar-by-bar analyses of major classical works (of composers associated with Austria): audio, annotations, scores, and performance/score animations in various video formats, together with biographical essays on the composers. Some possible points of departure: 1, 2, 3. posted by Wolfdog at 6:22 AM PST - 10 comments
In 'Cartoon Wars', the latest (twopart) episode of South Park, writers Trey Parker and Matt Stone parody the show that parodies everybody, Family Guy. The South Park episode features Cartman and Kyle at war over an imaginary episode of Family Guy that features a (censored) image of the Prophet Muhammed (QT preview here). But in writing their 'stinging satire' (some say of Family Guy itself, while others say it is a criticism of Islamofacism), have Trey and Matt ironically missed the fact that they themselves actually featured a non-censored image of the Prophet Muhammed in South Park almost five years ago? posted by Effigy2000 at 2:26 AM PST - 124 comments
Rudolf Vrba-RIP --he escaped from Auschwitz with another guy, Wetzler, in April 1944 and got to Slovakia and Hungary, telling the world of the atrocities in the Auschwitz Protocol. Some Hungarian community leaders, however (Hungary was the only country that hadn't had its Jewish population deported yet), were busy making deals with Eichmann for safe passage away. In any case, the result was that about 1,700 Hungarian Jewish leaders, with their families and friends, ended up in Switzerland, while almost half a million unsuspecting Hungarian Jews ended up dead in Auschwitz. Vrba's report first alerted the world (including the Vatican, Red Cross, and US and British authorities) to exactly what was going on, and helped prosecute some who were tried later. ...Knowing perfectly well that it was the secrecy surrounding their actions that allowed the Nazis to herd unsuspecting Jews and transport them like sheep to slaughter, Vrba and Wetzler — as soon as they got in touch with Jewish community representatives in their native Slovakia — compiled a detailed report. They wrote about Auschwitz and what awaited Hungarian Jews once they arrived: immediate death by gassing. posted by amberglow at 8:50 PM PST - 17 comments
Robert Gregory Griffeth has deleted all of his galleries and in their place has posted these 12 enigmatic panels and a tracker (which, if accurate, tells me that there are a couple of hundred puzzled punters a day). [more inside] posted by tellurian at 4:42 PM PST - 15 comments
AOOA (The Telephone) ...short, yet moody and evocative point-and-click puzzle. (If it's too short and leaves you wanting more, how about trying Magneto Syndrome? It's another short yet interesting sci-fi point-and-click/escape puzzle.) (note: flash) posted by crunchland at 8:00 AM PST - 7 comments
Advice for weary, wandering Democrats Note to Democrats: "Barack Obama put it exquisitely in his victory speech: "Government can help provide us with the basic tools we need to live out the American dream."
Here's a dirty little secret. The Republicans know this. Nothing scares them more than us returning to our simple answers. ..." posted by Postroad at 7:20 AM PST - 93 comments
Six Visions of the End: Fall Down Six Times, an essay by Ran Prieur, describes six possible scenarios for the near future: Worst Case ("Meanwhile computer technology keeps accelerating, leading by 2050 to an insane and nearly all-powerful artificial intelligence, which exterminates all life on Earth except a single human, who it keeps alive to torture for all eternity: you."), Ridiculous Best Case ("In 2016 Dean steps down and the new president is an anarchist who spends eight years peacefully dismantling the federal government and building local systems that make central control irrelevant and impossible."), Naive Sci-Fi Utopia ("Everyone can live forever, and have kids, and enjoy wide open spaces. No one is sure how this is possible, but it probably has something to do with the Mayan calendar or the word "quantum.""), and three others. Whether or not you agree with his vision, the exercise of imagining different futures is a useful one that might help us see a way through the multiple crises the Earth is going through. What does your apocalypse look like? posted by spacewaitress at 6:37 AM PST - 70 comments
Douglas Hofstadter says, "What troubles me is the notion that things that touch me at my deepest core -- pieces of music most of all, which I have always taken as direct soul-to-soul messages -- might be effectively produced by mechanisms thousands if not millions of times simpler than the intricate biological machinery that gives rise to a human soul.". That was prompted by his reception to the output of David Cope's project Experiments in Musical Intelligence. posted by Gyan at 4:35 AM PST - 22 comments
You can keep your Simon, Randy and Paula, I'll take Barbara Cook any day. Here is the Broadway legend's two hour master class (it's a REALTIME video from The New York Public Library) and it'll teach you more about singing, phrasing and music than every moment of American Idol combined. At least watch the first 20 minutes, you'll be amazed. posted by adrober at 11:54 PM PST - 7 comments
Let the fur fly. The New York Post's Page Six is the latest pillar of the 'Forth' Estate to take heavy damage from scandal. Like the Judy Miller fiasco of 2005, except with virtually zero ramifications upon things that actually matter, no one looks good here. The tawdry gist: Billionaire Sleaze-Bag set up Gossip Freelancer Sleaze-Bag -- who supposedly was offering to trade positive Page Six coverage for money. The Gossip Sleaze-Bag is probably screwed, but now the other wolves are going in for theirs and (seeing a chance to rally, somewhat, around their own) it's the Billionaire Sleaze-Bag that they'd most like to get a piece of.
The part about this that makes it all a Robert-Downey-Jr-movie-waiting-to-happen is that the story broke on the eve of Page Six editor Richard Johnson's wedding.
Ah, yes. That's the stuff. posted by snortlebort at 9:47 PM PST - 13 comments
...a growing campaign to force public schools, state colleges and private workplaces to eliminate policies protecting gays and lesbians from harassment. ...Christian activist Gregory S. Baylor responds to such criticism angrily. He says he supports policies that protect people from discrimination based on race and gender. But he draws a distinction that infuriates gay rights activists when he argues that sexual orientation is different — a lifestyle choice, not an inborn trait.
By equating homosexuality with race, Baylor said, tolerance policies put conservative evangelicals in the same category as racists. ...
"Think how marginalized racists are," said Baylor, who directs the Christian Legal Society's Center for Law and Religious Freedom. "If we don't address this now, it will only get worse." Should Christians be able to sue for the right to not tolerate or abide by anti-discrimination and anti-harassment policies meant to apply to all? Should they still be able to get school activity funding? posted by amberglow at 5:10 PM PST - 95 comments
TimesOnline Benjamin Cohen, the former teenaged dot.com millionaire, has run into a problem as he tries to make his next million: Google won't pay him for ads run on his website. posted by archkim at 1:14 PM PST - 40 comments
MusicTheory.net - Posted in a comment here, I thought I'd give it an FPP considering it may have just saved my butt on an exam. MusicTheory.net is an excellent, step-by-step resource for students, amateurs, and aesthetes of all levels. The site is flash, but provides not only lessons but training sessions and other resources as well (including a staff paper generator).
The Tzaddikim are 36 legendary saints for whose sake God does not destroy the world. Ancient writings of the Middle East claim that in every generation there exists a minimum number of beings upon whose merits the fate of the world rests. The number varies, but in Jewish legend 36 "Just" beings, or Tzaddikim, are considered to be the Foundation Stones of the World. Sometimes called the Tzadikim Nistarim or just the Lamed-Vav the hidden tzaddikim do their good deeds quietly. Their neighbors do not know who they are. They are not saints; they are not holy people, they are not recognized or known even to themselves. They simply are what they are and in their very being, they somehow sustain the world. If, however, that minimum of truly saintly people does not exist, then the world itself will perish. Neil Gaiman quotes Death in thinking Emperor Joshua Norton was one. posted by Smedleyman at 9:51 AM PST - 30 comments
Seeds of Imagination operates on the premise that talking (er, typing) to your plants encourages interesting growth. Try: sun, water, love, happy, fruit, etc. If a word is recognized, you will see it float up toward your plant. If not, it just disappears without a trace. You may also change the color of parts of the plant by typing in colors. (note: Flash, subtle ad) posted by crunchland at 7:55 AM PST - 15 comments
The Warriors of Oz "The Heroes of Oz as You've Never Seen Them!" You got that right. Three words: "Warrior Maiden Dorothy". Not Safe For Wizard Fans The picture on the site doesn't do justice to all the excruciatingly awful detail, but if you get a Sunday dead tree newspaper, there's an ad in most coupon sections. posted by wendell at 5:30 PM PST - 47 comments
On December 3rd, 2006 Canada's next Prime Minister will be decided by a few thousand delegates at the Liberal party convention in Montreal (join for ~$10). Don't believe me? In the last 110 years of Liberal party history only one leader has failed to become Prime Minister. No fewer than sixteen candidates met in Edmonton last week. On the surface the candidates are making nice.
Ignatieff: "None of us, none of us are going to run against each other. All of us are running against Stephen Harper's vision of Canada."
It is even said that Bob Rae and Ignatieff are life long close friends. That didn't stop the Ignatieff campaign co-chair.
David Peterson: "[Rae's] got some terrible burdens to overcome. One is his record and one is his loyalty."
London Bombings had nothing to do with Al Qaeda - The official Government report into the July 7th bombings in London has concluded that the attacks were carried out on "a shoestring budget" and "with no direct support from al Qaeda", according to an article published in The Observer on Sunday. They instead were organized through "terror sites" on the internet. This is apparently not good enough for the Conservative opposition. "I find that very hard to believe," said Tory homeland security spokesman Patrick Mercer. The lack of connection further reinforces ideas that Al Qaeda is nowhere near as widespread and organized as we are often led to believe. posted by Acey at 4:31 PM PST - 45 comments
Bardou (note: sound on intro) is a Belgian band founded by Jim Kline and Mariusz Radwanski combining medieval, baroque, folk, celtic and sea chanty in a beautiful sound. While strolling down the Cours Mirabeau in Aix-en-Provence this afternoon, I chanced upon these two musicians playing dulcet tones in a duet. As I drew closer, I saw the instruments were nothing I'd encountered before: a nyckelharpa and an arch guitar. The sound was quite appealing (.mpg video). posted by darkstar at 2:04 PM PST - 10 comments
Bird flu update: "At this moment, birds that travel flyways in Asia, where most bird flu cases have been found, are mingling with birds that fly through North America." Officials in Kansas and Ohio warn it will arrive this fall, as those birds fly south for the winter on North American migration pathways. The Onion jokingly predicts the government's response. posted by salvia at 1:46 PM PST - 23 comments
...Consider the stunning magnitude of the failure. Iraq has been the top priority for the world's only superpower for the past three years, and a central one for many regional and international powers. The United States, intent on keeping Iraq together, has spent more resources in that country than any state ever has spent on another in the history of the world... In this perspective, one central measure of success of the intervention in Iraq is this: Three years later, have the prospects of regional and global security increased or decreased? The answer should propel a debate that's bigger than Iraq.
Even geeks need to reach out and touch someone. (so NSFW).
Found while browsing today, a site (mentioned once, in a comment, by its author here) dedicated to the other kind of technolust. For those times when you just cannot be physically close to the one you love/lust/hook-up-with. Or whatever it is you kids are doing these days, with your newfangled "Internet" and "Computers."
I think that, instead of trying to be witty about it, I'll let its content speak for itself. posted by ChrisR at 9:44 AM PST - 26 comments
"I've been silent long enough... My sincere view is that the commitment of our forces to this fight was done with a casualness and swagger that are the special province of those who have never had to execute these missions--or bury the results." Marine Lieutenant General Greg Newbold, the Pentagon's former top operations officer, becomes the latest military insider to raise his voice against the "zealots" who led the US into war in Iraq. He writes in Time magazine: "Never again, we thought, would our military's senior leaders remain silent as American troops were marched off to an ill-considered engagement. It's 35 years later, and the judgment is in: the Who had it wrong. We have been fooled again... After 9/11, I was a witness and therefore a party to the actions that led us to the invasion of Iraq--an unnecessary war." During the Vietnam war, such discontent among soldiers sparked a massive campaign of disobedience and peace activism (as well as, more darkly, fragging) within the ranks, as recounted in a new documentary called Sir! No Sir! Can it happen again? Ask the Soldiers for the Truth. posted by digaman at 9:40 AM PST - 60 comments
Under Age Text? "Former senior public servant Nick Gill was sentenced to 14 days' jail, suspended on the rising of the court, and fined $3000 after being found guilty of having 66 stories, featuring mostly young boys, on his desktop computer." All text. There were no images to found. Australian fans of Harry Potter should probably rethink that slash masterpiece, and toss out their copies of Lolita and the latest VC Andrews novels. posted by FunkyHelix at 5:27 PM PST - 76 comments
For years, art critics were stumped by the inconsistencies in one of Norman Rockwell's most famous paintings for the Saturday Evening Post, Breaking Home Ties. The colors weren't as vibrant as his usual work, nor did the clothes hang correctly. Perhaps most telling, the expression of wistful longing on the face of the protagonist didn't feel right. Two weeks ago, the reasons why became clear. (more inside) posted by jonson at 3:16 PM PST - 35 comments
Security expert (and personal hero) Bruce Schneier on the subject of movie plot threats : Sometimes it seems like the people in charge of homeland security spend too much time watching action movies. They defend against specific movie plots instead of against the broad threats of terrorism.
This month, Schneier announces a contest for readers of his blog and newsletter - submit the most unlikely, yet still plausible, terrorist attack scenarios you can come up with.
From the announcement : "The prize will be an autographed copy of Beyond Fear. And if I can swing it, a phone call with a real live movie producer." posted by Afroblanco at 12:00 PM PST - 31 comments
"You know the bad thing about it? You're matchin' up to him." Richard Lee McNair, who was serving a life sentence for the 1988 murder of a truck driver in North Dakota, escaped from a federal penitentiary by hiding in a postal van as it left the prison grounds.
McNair convinced a police officer in the tiny community of Ball, Louisiana, that he wasn't the man they were looking for. The conversation between McNair and police officer Karl Bordelon was recorded by the video camera on the dashboard of Bordelon's patrol car. posted by MotorNeuron at 6:31 AM PST - 44 comments
Eighth grader Anthony Soltero shot himself on Thursday, March 30, after the assistant principal at De Anza Middle School told him that he was going to prison for three years because of his involvement as an organizer of the April 28 school walk-outs to protest the anti-immigrant legislation in Washington. The vice principal also forbade Anthony from attending graduation activities and threatened to fine his mother for Anthony's truancy and participation in the student protests."
Anthony was learning about the importance of civic duties and rights in his eighth grade class. Ironically, he died because the vice principal at his school threatened him for speaking out and exercising those rights," ... posted by amberglow at 9:40 PM PST - 206 comments
This video from the online New England Journal of Medicine of live parasitic worms scurrying around the inside of a patient's colon was not nearly as sexy as I thought it would be after reading the description. warning: link goes to nonsexy new england journal of medicine video of live parasitic worms scurrying around the inside of a patient's colon posted by jonson at 2:42 PM PST - 60 comments
NY Post Go$$ip Writer 4 $ale! The New York Daily News is reporting that Jared Paul Stern, a prominent New York Post gossip writer, attempted to extort over $220,000 from a frequent target of the oh-so-classy Page Six column in exchange for "protection" against "inaccurate and unflattering items." If we can't trust our gossip columnists, who can we trust? (via Fark) posted by UKnowForKids at 2:26 PM PST - 22 comments
The billionaire attorney. The King of Torts. Legendary Texas Lawyer. He is Joe Jamail. He is most famous for his record setting verdict in Texaco v. Pennzoil (which eventually made it to the US Supreme Court) in which Joe secured a $10.3 billion dollar judgment (though it is not known for sure, some speculate that Joe walked with $1 billion in attorney's fees in that case). In addition to being well known for his success, he is almost as legendary for his colorful demeanor. One such example was when he got reprimanded for his behavior in Paramount Communications Inc. v. QVC Network, Inc.. But to see him in action with your own eyes, we have video of classic Joe during a deposition he was giving. (via brainwidth). posted by dios at 9:04 AM PST - 47 comments
Dr. James Burda has a gift. "I learned about my gift three years ago. While driving to a nearby city in order to do shopping my left foot started to hurt. Just for amusement, I made a guess as to the exact bone involved with the pain, told the bone to realign, and the pain went away almost instantly." For $60, you (or your pet) can undergo the same treatment from the comfort of your own home. Bear in mind that The Ohio State Chiropractic Board maintains that Burda is "delusional." posted by Otis at 8:49 AM PST - 40 comments
5 year old girl forced to apologize for hugging classmate At issue is a hug Savannah said she got on the playground from a friend named Sophie. Savannah hugged Sophie back. The hugs resulted in Savannah having to write a letter, complete with teacher corrections, that read, "I touch Sophie because she touch me and I didn't like it because she was hugging me. I didn't like when she hugged me." posted by bubblesonx at 7:36 AM PST - 166 comments
drifts ... move the red bubble with your mouse cursor. do not touch the purple bubbles! collect the green bubbles! touch the blue bubbles to turn green bubbles into points. you need at least three green bubbles to earn a point. collect more than 3 bubbles for bonus points! (note: flash) posted by crunchland at 10:54 PM PST - 18 comments
A very expensive typo. For twelve hours on April 5, a business class fare on Alitalia from Toronto to Lanarca, Cyprus was $39 CAD instead of the usual $3900. Someone at farecompare.com with access to ATPCO airfare feeds found the error and posted the news to FlyerTalk, which started a stampede for tickets that lasted until the fare was belatedly corrected. Alitalia initially tried to cancel the already issued tickets, sparking debates
over whether the obviously wrong fares should be honored. Alitalia eventually relented, and a lucky 500-2000 people (according to some guesses) will be flying to Cyprus for under $200 including taxes. posted by komilnefopa at 8:33 PM PST - 41 comments
Q: You never stop talking about freedom, and I appreciate that. But while I listen to you talk about freedom, I see you assert your right to tap my telephone, to arrest me and hold me without charges, to try to preclude me from breathing clean air and drinking clean water and eating safe food. If I were a woman, you'd like to restrict my opportunity to make a choice and decision about whether I can abort a pregnancy on my own behalf. You are --
"CabSpotting traces San Francisco's taxi cabs as they travel throughout the Bay Area. The patterns traced by each cab create a living and always-changing map of city life. This map hints at economic, social, and cultural trends that are otherwise invisible." posted by vacapinta at 4:39 PM PST - 16 comments
Antique Spectacles David Fleishman, M.D., a retired ophthalmologist, has compiled a rather extensive collection of information about spectacles and their importance in history. In addition to many examples of early spectacles and information about the spectacles worn by figures in history, there is a general history - Eyeglasses Through the Ages:[R]eading glasses are one of the most important inventions of the past 2000 years.... No one really knows about the early history of image magnification. In ancient times, someone noticed that convex-shaped glass magnified images. Sometime between the year 1000 and 1250 crude technology began to develop regarding reading stones (simple magnifiers). English Franciscan Friar Roger Bacon (1220 -1292), in his 1268 ‘Opus Majus’, noted that letters could be seen better and larger when viewed through less than half a sphere of glass. Bacon's experiments confirmed the principle of the convex (converging) lens, described by Alhazen (965-1038) Arabian mathematician, optician and astronomer at Cairo, and even earlier by the Greeks.
(via the dead tree version of the WSJ) posted by caddis at 9:13 AM PST - 18 comments
Pink Expenses is a fun little hack. Select from a list of racy services, get presented with a plausable looking receipt, then cut it out and submit it with your next corporate expense report. Hilarity ensues (or you get fired, which is still kind of funny). posted by mathowie at 8:34 AM PST - 22 comments
连环梦 ... (aka Kawa) "It might be an exit; It might be a trap; It might be just a dream." 连环梦 is a surreal point-and-click maze/puzzle from China, full of twists and unexpected turns. (note: flash) posted by crunchland at 10:50 PM PST - 15 comments
Go team. I have been struggling with my outrage over this story (the details of what seems very likely to have happened and the terrible, horrible one offs comments that I've read about in response to it) for over a week now. It seems odd that no one has posted the story on MeFi, given its implications on class, race, race relations in an integrated southern city, elite educational institutions, frat boy mayhem (to an extreme), and when no means no and it doesn't matter who is saying it. One thing's for sure, this storykeeps gettingworse. posted by psmealey at 7:22 PM PST - 151 comments
"Primitive animation is part of the charm of TV's boldest, most politically incorrect satirical series. Its simple style also makes possible the show's unmatched topicality." For its "notoriously rude, undeniably fearless lampoon of all that is self-important and hypocritical in American life, regardless of race, creed, color or celebrity status," South Park was announced today as a recipient of the George Foster Peabody Award, arguably the most prestigious award in television news broadcasting. posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:43 PM PST - 56 comments
rockpaperscissors is a nifty little place where you can scope out music from all over. The archive profiles all sorts of artists and provides free full-length samples to help you decide how to get your groove on. posted by tentacle at 5:23 PM PST - 4 comments
Jesus walked on the water ice. So sayeth... um... well, this guy at Florida State. Doron Nof has released a paper positing that when Jesus walked on the water in Galilee, he was actually walking on a patch of floating ice. What's interesting about science like this to me is that it both validates and invalidates scripture, since if Jesus was walking on ice... no miracle (although, it's a miracle he didn't slip and fall, har har har). But if Jesus was walking on ice, then at least he historically existed, which is still an open question at least in some quarters. In case you think you recognize Mr. Nof's name, you may be remembering his work explaining that the parting of the Red Sea was totally possible (flash video link).
posted by illovich at 3:37 PM PST - 106 comments
Police abuse remains one of the most serious and divisive human rights violations in the United States. The excessive use of force by police officers, including unjustified shootings, severe beatings, fatal chokings, and rough treatment, persists because overwhelming barriers to accountability make it possible for officers who commit human rights violations to escape due punishment and often to repeat their offenses.
This reporter went out to discover just how hard it would be to anonymously file a complaint report. As it turns out, he was threatened, roughed up, and even intimidated by the suggestion that he would be shot. After reporter Mike Kirsch filed this story, the retaliation was swift and one would have thought, illegal. posted by dejah420 at 1:33 PM PST - 67 comments
"London Calling" sparks terror fear in cab driver. Newsfilter: "British anti-terrorism detectives escorted a man from a plane after a taxi driver had earlier become suspicious when he started singing along to a track by punk band The Clash, police said Wednesday.
Detectives halted the London-bound flight at Durham Tees Valley Airport in northern England and Harraj Mann, 24, was taken off.
"The taxi driver had become worried on the way to the airport because Mann had been singing along to The Clash's 1979 anthem "London Calling," which features the lyrics "Now war is declared -- and battle come down" while other lines warn of a "meltdown expected."
Also reported here, where we learn this is not the first Clash-related terror scare.
Joe Strummer is looking down and laughing, not least because it wasn't terror song Spanish Bombs. posted by magpie68 at 12:30 PM PST - 68 comments
A New Gospel Fragment Discovered Could the Da Vinci code be based on truth? Church scholars have denied claims that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married, but ancient Egyptian papyri previously illlegible may unlock further insight on the relationship between Mary and Jesus. posted by daHIFI at 11:50 AM PST - 44 comments
What separates GM from Honda? The development process. An interesting read about Honda's lean and mean development process, as compared to the bureaucratic nightmare that exists at General Motors. A fascinating read and good insight into one of the many reasons why the domestic automakers are getting spanked these days. posted by tgrundke at 9:53 AM PST - 43 comments
Massachusetts is about to pass a "nearly" universal health care plan. It's an ambitious and innovative piece of public policy that mixes tax incentives to insure yourself if you can afford it to direct government subsidies to health care insurers to help cover the poor. Businesses will be fined if they are not going to cover their workers. It still does not cover escalating costs or malpractice wildness. And, it still will leave 5% uncovered. Nor, is it the plan specifically endorsed by Physicians for a National Health Plan (who favor a single payer system) or the AMA (who favor much greater reform of insurance providers). Still, it's a start from making us "the only industrialized nation in the world" to not, well you know..... posted by narebuc at 9:32 AM PST - 71 comments
As we know,the internets are not short on herbal information. While looking for a way to un-numb my teeth, I came across a veritable cornucopia of herbal knowledge, complete with formulae. Step inside for an interesting essay... posted by ashbury at 7:47 AM PST - 45 comments
Ballpark Blues. To make way for a new stadium and redevelopment, DC has been clearing out the underground bar and club scene in the Navy Yard area of southeast Washington. The first victim was Tracks, one of DC's first gay clubs and the epicenter of the nascent Goth scene in DC--closed in 1999 to make way for an office building. Now the rest of the neighborhood's gay clubs are being demolished to make way for the new stadium. And finally, Nation, home of Cubik(formerly Buzz), Velvet and Alchemy is closing to make way for another new office complex. DC nightlife will never be the same again. posted by empath at 7:01 AM PST - 19 comments
Dual Boot, Officially. Now that the contest is over, it could be time for bothsides of the Cola OS War to put aside their differences and shake hands ... though not without a little good-natured snark: "Macs use an ultra-modern industry standard technology called EFI to handle booting. Sadly, Windows XP, and even the upcoming Vista, are stuck in the 1980s with old-fashioned BIOS. But with Boot Camp, the Mac can operate smoothly in both centuries." Oooooh ... burn. posted by grabbingsand at 6:44 AM PST - 102 comments
porn quotes! porn star kami andrews [NSFW duh] has collected her favorite quotes from porn stars. I think some are movie lines and some are from personal interraction. My favorite: "Your life story would be called When Bubble wrap isn't enough" posted by Tryptophan-5ht at 8:55 PM PST - 41 comments
Mysterious Boom felt throughout Southern California this morning with no explanation. USGS claims there were no quakes, meteorologists claim nothing in the weather could have caused it, military bases are claiming that nothing they were doing would cause such a rumble, and air traffic controllers state that no supersonic flights were taking place in the area (no sonic boom). I was awoken by the shaking and the car alarms that followed. If it's none of the above, just what caused it? posted by afx114 at 2:26 PM PST - 119 comments
"In some cases, there really is no way to recover without nuking the systems from orbit." -- Mike Danseglio, program manager in the Security Solutions group at Microsoft posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 1:46 PM PST - 43 comments
This 'How Geeky Are You?' quiz illustrates how geekdom today means something completely different from what it used to. Out with unwashed hair and actually programming, in with mindless purchase of consumer goods. posted by splitpeasoup at 1:11 PM PST - 65 comments
Whooops! While making a required filing to the state ethics commission, Ohio Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Kenneth Blackwell finds Diebold shares in his stock portfolio that he now claims to have bought "accidentally." Yes, that Diebold -- the e-voting company whose chairman promised to "deliver the vote" to George Bush. And yes, that Blackwell, whose state helped deliver the White House to the GOP. Blackwell insists that the humble amount of Diebold stock was in one of those "blind trust" type of arrangements that worked out so rewardingly for Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist. [newsfilter via RawStory.] posted by digaman at 11:32 AM PST - 108 comments
Silence in class. "University professors denounced for anti-Americanism; schoolteachers suspended for their politics; students encouraged to report on their tutors. Are US campuses in the grip of a witch-hunt of progressives, or is academic life just too liberal?" From today's Guardian. posted by jokeefe at 10:51 AM PST - 188 comments
World Famous publicly founded Smithsonian Institution recently sold a right-of-first-refusal on their collections to Showtime Networks, allegedly because the Smithsonian badly needed cash for urgent works (previous Mefi thread). Some poster on other blogs notes that if the WIPO Broadcasting Treaty (links to second draft)
will be implemented that could grant Showtime a broadcast right over the documentaries produced with Smithsonian materials ;
this right would be similar yet separated from copyright , but with additional and increasingly chilling effects [partially via BoingBoing] posted by elpapacito at 8:51 AM PST - 15 comments
Vintage arcade artwork. In free, vector goodness. For collectors restoring a piece of arcade history and enthusiasts who want to create some great art to hang in the den. Who doesn't want a giant Q-Bert on their wall? posted by punkfloyd at 6:00 AM PST - 25 comments
images embedded in music by aphex twin can be viewed on certain tracks using a spectograph. What initially was thought to be a hidden demon face, turned out to actually be Richard D James' trademark, his unnerving grinning visage. (otherexamplesareinteresting). The images were embedded in the music using a program called metasynth which allows you to do cool things like 'paint sound'. The secret images even inspired a reasonably interesting article at wired.
The most remarkable thing to me is how the generally abrasive result of this process was blended so well into the tracks. I have listened to these many times myself and never sensed something off or odd about the sections with these embedded images in them (other than the usual odd sounds that make up the tracks themselves).
Wikipedia has a pretty good article for those unfamiliar with the artist.
previously on mefl here, but the content is old and that link dead so I thought it was worth another post. posted by crunchywelch at 12:49 AM PST - 29 comments
CNN confirms that Tom DeLay, the scandal-embroiled Republican Congressman from Texas and former Republican House Majority Leader, has dropped out of the race for the 22nd District House seat. posted by teferi at 7:50 PM PST - 144 comments
Let me make you an offer you can refuse... The Nigerian Football Association has adopted the "if you can't beat 'em join 'em" policy regarding bribery of officials. They now say that officials can accept bribes, so long as said bribes don't affect the game's outcome.
Brilliant. Why didn't anyone think of this before? posted by TheFarSeid at 7:42 PM PST - 21 comments
A friend notes that a friend of hers noted another person on LiveJournal who said his brother noted that Wednesday morning "at exactly two minutes and three seconds after 1:00 in the morning, the time and date will be: 01:02:03 04/05/06." (In U.S. notation.) posted by cgc373 at 7:41 PM PST - 35 comments
Son of Senate president offered plea deal in assault case Clifton Bennett, 18, the son of Arizona Senate President Ken Bennett, and his co-defendant, Kyle Wheeler, 19, were charged in January with 18 counts of aggravated assault and 18 counts of kidnapping for the incidents, which happened at a youth camp last June.
The younger Bennett confessed to police that he and Wheeler sodomized the 11- to 14-year-old boys with broomsticks and flashlights in at least 40 incidents, court documents show. posted by headlemur at 7:33 PM PST - 76 comments
Frontier Myths Meet Reality Ten years ago, two events occurred that thrust Montana into the national spotlight. On April 3, 1996, Theodore Kaczynski, aka "The Unabomber," was arrested in his tiny cabin near Lincoln. This murderer was responsible for mailing package bombs that killed 3 people and injured many more over the span of nearly 20 years. His hermit-like life in the forest went a long way towards many people associating "Montana" with "crazed loners." At the same time, the weeks-long standoff at the Montana Freemen compound ("Justus Township") was entering its second week; it would last until mid-June. The Freemen rejected United States federal authority, tried to create "unique" banking and legal systems, and according to some reports believed in racial superiority. This occurred a few miles away from the tiny community of Jordan, itself one of the more remote towns in Montana. Again, Montana was seen as a haven for rebellious, anti-government, anti-social types, although some didn't think that image was necessarily a bad thing. In the midst of this bizarre confluence of negative events and media coverage, it took another Montana (part-time) resident, David Letterman, to make some humor out of the bizarre situations: Top 10 Things In The Unabomber Cabin, and Top 10 Demands of the Freemen. posted by davidmsc at 7:12 PM PST - 19 comments
Hindsight on Iraq is 20/20 -- but views diverge. Reason magazine asks notable libertarians, conservatives, and academics -- from Instapundit Glenn Reynolds (one word: "win") to Illuminatus! author Robert Anton Wilson ("Bush has used [the invasion] as an excuse to destroy the last few tattered remnants of the Bill of Rights") -- if they would have chosen differently in 2003, knowing how the war would develop. posted by digaman at 10:11 AM PST - 97 comments
Former GOP senior strategist Kevin Phillips wrote the political Bible of the New Right, The Emerging Republican Majority. He coined the term "Sun Belt." He voted for Reagan twice and still considers himself a staunch Republican. But now Phillips, the author of a new book called American Theocracy, is warning that the party of George Bush and Karl Rove ("W brand Republicans," in the phrase of GOP pollster Jan van Lohuizen) has become "God's own party" -- the champion of a convergence of "petroleum-defined national security; a crusading, simplistic Christianity; and a reckless credit-feeding financial complex." Phillips also cautions that the W-brand party's "sense of how to win elections comes out of a CIA manual, not out of the Declaration of Independence or the Constitution." [Phillips was also discussed here.] posted by digaman at 9:53 AM PST - 27 comments
If you're like me, sometimes you wish you had a fully customizable, living, breathing, sexual aid. I'm here to tell you that your prayers have been answered: introducing the Gimpling™ posted by mathowie at 8:20 PM PST - 43 comments
Have you ever wondered why we don't harvest milk from pigs? Or why the Amoco Corporation is always leaving all the lights on in their building in such an energy-inefficient fashion? What the hell is the Grimace anyway? What does Ruth Bader Ginsburg think of the legal problem of Siamese twins, when one is retarded and the other commits a felony? What are the qualifications of the buzzer-pressing "judge" on "$100,000 Pyramid"? Can you crash on the Sultan of Brunei's sofa when you're in town? For many years, Guy Petzall attempted to get answers to questions like these. Sometimes he succeeded. posted by Gator at 2:00 PM PST - 43 comments
Stitching Together Lives Torn Apart. In a war with no fixed front, military hospitals in Iraq are closer than ever to the places where American troops are felled — most often by roadside bombs, but also by rockets, mortars and gunshots. Many of the most seriously wounded would have died in previous wars. In Vietnam, soldiers often bled to death before reaching a hospital. Because the wounded in Iraq are evacuated so quickly, 96% of those who make it alive to the Balad and Baghdad hospitals are saved. On the battlefield, medics are better-prepared. The lowliest grunt is given specialized lifesaver training. New blood-clotting agents and improved field bandages have helped save lives.
The amputation rate in Iraq is double that of previous wars. Many soldiers face the rest of their lives without arms or legs, or with severe brain damage. The LATimes special reporting: The Lifeline (graphic photo), part one of three. posted by PenguinBukkake at 1:52 PM PST - 20 comments
Schmap is an online/desktop travel guidebook. They are taking Creative Commons licensed photos from Flickr and using them in their city guides. It is kind of like Google Maps + Flickr + Lonely Planet. [Contains some flash, and to try out the guide you have to install the Schmap Player.] posted by pithy comment at 12:20 PM PST - 10 comments
Indiana finally adopts EST+DST tomorrow (discussed previously.) The historic lack of DST meant software hacks for calculating time in Indiana. People running OS X 10.4.5 are ready. Windows Users need to reset their machines for their location, possibly making some calendar entries an hour off. Unix may need a manual update depending on your distribution. Most Indiana users of OS X Panther and OS9 users should fake living in Atlanta. But with 36 years of legacy systems possibly coded and probably configured with an geography-specific hack, I'm expecting things to be a bit messy on Monday. Personally, I'm just hoping that Travelocity gave me the right time for my Thursday flight. posted by KirkJobSluder at 9:18 AM PST - 29 comments
What would you think if the U.S. government decided to take six failing private companies, combine their assets into one government-operated company, and subsidized it through losses of a million dollars per day? It's something that might not happen today, but on this day in 1976, Conrail (the Consolidated Rail Corporation), took over operations for six railroads in the northeast, putting an end to the fruitless mergers and often-massive bankruptcies that had become common. [more inside] posted by Godbert at 8:31 AM PST - 12 comments