July 2010 Archives

July 31

“There’s a tremendous amount of anxiety among religious traditionalists that when you take one step toward egalitarianism, the floodgates are open and everything that seemed self-evident will no longer be. Men go to work, and women raise children. If you undermine that, you have lost your whole universe.”

The Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements of Judaism have been ordaining women as rabbis for decades, but the religion's most traditional sect, the Orthodox, remains a lone, minority holdout against egalitarianism. Last year, Orthodox Rabbi Avraham "Avi" Weiss (political activist and founder of the controversial, liberal, "Open Orthodox" Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Yeshiva in New York) tried to shake things up by ordaining the first female American Orthodox rabbi. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 9:09 PM PST - 35 comments


"I never know what to call myself really. I call myself a cartoonist because it's what I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember, it's what I always return to, and it's how I think. But I don't really work in that field. I think I'm an artist and a writer, or more appropriately, an artist who writes." [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 8:52 PM PST - 5 comments



What's the easiest way to learn about a state? Watch the California Gurls parody made in that state's honor! [41LYT] [more inside]
posted by 47triple2 at 5:37 PM PST - 42 comments

With "support for the death penalty in excess of 85% [of the population]", there is normally little fuss in Japan each time the announcement is made that convicted murderers from death row have been hanged (such announcements are only made after each execution.) But last Wednesday, the disclosure that two executions had taken place early that morning did raise eyebrows - for two reasons. Justice Minister Keiko Chiba held a press conference to make the announcement, and added that - in a 'first' for a Japanese Justice Minister - she herself had attended the execution as a witness, after signing the authorization for it to proceed. But what has really caused a firestorm of protest is the fact that although she lost her Parliamentary seat in last month's election, she "has remained in her ministerial post at the request of Prime Minister Naoto Kan". She is a private citizen.
posted by woodblock100 at 5:16 PM PST - 29 comments

Pop music in the '60s ran the gamut from Bobby Russell's "Saturday Morning Confusion" to "Come Saturday Morning" (from the soundtrack of "The Sterile Cuckoo"* and performed by the same guys who sang of "Guantanamo -mera"). And they still write songs today about "Saturday Morning" (with pancakes! and vampires!).

The first thing Disney did when it took over ABC was "One Saturday Morning"**. But then there are the "REAL Saturday Morning Watchmen" (remixed from previously on MeFi). (other Saturday Morning video posts)

*yes, that is a very young Liza Minnelli
**I'll never forgive them for canceling "Reboot" and "Bump in the Night", the only Saturday toons I still enjoyed, because they weren't produced by Disney

posted by oneswellfoop at 5:08 PM PST - 10 comments


The Flower contrasts a utopian society that freely farms and consumes a pleasure giving flower with a society where the same flower is illegal and its consumption is prohibited. The animation is a meditation on the social and economic costs of marijuana prohibition.
posted by Surfin' Bird at 1:34 PM PST - 56 comments

Puberty Blues - Hayley Smith started developing breasts when she was five. A year later, she had her first period. “It was awful,” her mother says. “There was so much ignorance. People treated her differently—Hayley didn’t really have a childhood. You just don’t expect to have to talk to your six-year-old daughter about having periods.” The evidence from Denmark suggests that Hayley’s experience could soon be commonplace. Most paediatric endocrinologists now agree that the age of puberty is falling fast in developed nations. But there is no consensus on why.
posted by heatherann at 1:21 PM PST - 93 comments


The Internet Animal Orchestra [SLYT Saturday]
posted by xod at 12:28 PM PST - 11 comments

Romania's Tirgsor Prison (for women), as photographed by six inmates. (mild nsfw content)
posted by edgeways at 11:51 AM PST - 35 comments

Man, Some Kittens Just Love Broccoli. But is it good for them? [MLYTP] [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 11:30 AM PST - 50 comments



Sisyphean box [SLYT]
posted by 0xdeadc0de at 9:25 AM PST - 59 comments

The Broken Window Fallacy. [SLYT] [more inside]
posted by tybeet at 9:16 AM PST - 44 comments

Washing machine self destructs [SLYT]
posted by alby at 7:55 AM PST - 80 comments

High-speed railroading
America's system of rail freight is the world's best. High-speed passenger trains could ruin it [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 7:49 AM PST - 81 comments



July 30

On July 28, Federal District Court Judge Susan Bolton issued an injunction (link to pdf of court order) blocking several portions of the recent immigration bill SB1070, which was passed on April 23. (Previously on Metafilter.) Among other provisions, the bill would have allowed Arizona police officers to demand proof of immigration status of people suspected of being in the country illegally pursuant to a legal police stop. Most importantly, the federal ruling blocked the portion of the law that would have allowed police officers to demand proof of legal status. Opponents of the law, who had already planned demonstrations yesterday, the first day the law was set to take effect, reportedly view the ruling as a victory, though partial and perhaps temporary. Proponents of the law are predictably unhappy with the ruling, and react with disappointment.
posted by diocletian at 9:20 PM PST - 127 comments


The CIA is watching him. He's been addressed directly by powerful people all across the United States government. And earlier today on his website and across the internet, the same man has placed a 1.4 gigabyte encrypted file labeled "insurance."
posted by atypicalguy at 8:00 PM PST - 308 comments

So, you always wanted to be a musician, but your pops wouldn't send you to music school? And you can't afford a decent instrument? Aw, quit yer whining and go get a garden hose.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:40 PM PST - 25 comments

ProPublica now has a tumblelog.
posted by reenum at 6:50 PM PST - 8 comments


"Flower Warfare - Psychedelic Action Scene" by Freddie Wong (previously). Behind the scenes.
posted by brundlefly at 4:43 PM PST - 11 comments

The Wall Street Journal investigates web snoops. The 50 sites installed a total of 3,180 tracking files on a test computer used to conduct the study. Only one site, the encyclopedia Wikipedia.org, installed none. Twelve sites, including IAC/InterActive Corp.'s Dictionary.com, Comcast Corp.'s Comcast.net and Microsoft Corp.'s MSN.com, installed more than 100 tracking tools apiece in the course of the Journal's test. [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 4:32 PM PST - 59 comments

How to be alone. [SLYT]
posted by Taft at 3:10 PM PST - 101 comments

Camouflage Everything
posted by Xurando at 3:04 PM PST - 32 comments


Strange Cargo: Taryn Simon took over 1,000 photographs of items seized or detained at JFK Airport. Here is a sampling. Here is some information about the project.
posted by AceRock at 2:06 PM PST - 33 comments

Is the alpha-dog method of training, as promoted by Cesar Millan, a myth? Rival trainer Victoria Stilwell thinks so and has launched a competitive assault on Cesar's Dog Whisperer by starring on It's Me or the Dog and spreading her system of positive-reinforcement training. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 1:25 PM PST - 81 comments

Alexis Soyer lived quite an an amazing life. According to his wiki, he "was a French chef who became the most celebrated cook in Victorian England" who also "during the Great Irish Famine in April 1847, ... invented the soup kitchen and was asked by the Government to go to Ireland to implement his idea. This was opened in Dublin and his "famine soup" was served to thousands of the poor for free. Whilst in Ireland he wrote Soyer's Charitable Cookery. He gave the proceeds of the book to various charities. He also opened an art gallery in London, and donated the entrance fees to charity to feed the poor." And then there is also the remarkable story of Soyer's Magic Stove.
posted by puny human at 12:24 PM PST - 16 comments

Faces, a short animation by Lei Lei (雷磊), an independent Chinese animator and designer. He's put most of his works on Vimeo, including a short TEDxShanghai talk he gave several months ago. [more inside]
posted by zabuni at 11:51 AM PST - 5 comments

Arron Diaz of Dresden Codak (previously previously previously) shows us how he makes his colorful comic pages at Indistinguishable From Magic, an art/instruction blog about Character Design, Hands In Storytelling, and Batman.
posted by The Whelk at 11:18 AM PST - 51 comments

Free music downloads without committing piracy! Freegal is a new service that libraries around the country are now offering to library card holders (up to 20 per week per library card). Freegal offers DRM-free mp3 downloads with no third-party application involved from Sony’s massive music catalog. [more inside]
posted by morganannie at 11:17 AM PST - 28 comments

Acousmata is a unique music blog devoted to "idiosyncratic research in electronic and experimental music, sound and acoustics, mysticism and technology" with special focus on the early history of electronic music.
posted by speicus at 9:50 AM PST - 16 comments

The Adam and Joe show ran on Channel 4 during the 90s. There are many marvellous memories from the late-night lo-fi bedroom fest, but most fondly rememberered are their re-enactments of popular films and shows using toys. Kids. This Life. Toytanic. Shine. Se7en. American Beautoy. Saving Private Lion. Furends. The Toy Patient. ToyTrainspotting.
posted by mippy at 9:13 AM PST - 20 comments

The Joking Computer: an algorithm that writes jokes. Have it make you a joke or learn how it works.
posted by jjray at 8:56 AM PST - 155 comments

Noted literary agent Andrew Wylie has made a deal with several of his authors - including Saul Bellow, John Updike and Phillip Roth - to release their e-books exclusively on Amazon. Macmillan's John Sargent and Tyler Cowen react.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 8:19 AM PST - 46 comments

It has applications in Economics, Biology, Pharmaceuticals, and is rooted in State Space Modeling, which with Kalman Filtering (paper, breakdown [warning: long]) was used in the Apollo program. Dynamic Linear Models are gaining in popularity. There exists an R package, and both a short doc and a really great (read: worth buying) book (sorry, not a download, but here's chapter 2) by Giovanni Petris, Sonia Petrone, and Patrizia Campagnoli with its own little website.
posted by JoeXIII007 at 8:04 AM PST - 14 comments

This is what it looked like then... Russian photographer Sergey Larenkov takes old WWII photos and go to exactly the same place it was taken, then combines the two. Some of my favorites
posted by ShawnString at 8:02 AM PST - 53 comments

Correctional Services Canada and the Harper Administration say they will close the Frontenac Institution prison farm. A group called Save Our Prison Farms in Kingston Ontario says they won't. Conflict at 11. [more inside]
posted by crazylegs at 7:53 AM PST - 22 comments

Final Kodachrome produced and processed. 13 months after (previous MeFi thread) Kodak announced they were discontinuing production of Kodachrome, the final Kodachrome roll made by Kodak has been processed by Dwayne's Photo Service, in Parsons, Kansas—the only Kodachrome processor left in the world. It was given to and shot by (NPR interview) Steve McCurry, of "Afghan Girl" fame, around New York City for a documentary by National Geographic. Just a reminder: you only have until December 30th, 2010 to get any rolls of Kodachrome developed before Dwayne's Photo stops processing Kodachrome.
posted by skynxnex at 7:44 AM PST - 28 comments


Twaggies, turn your tweets into pics. Take random weird tweets and turn them into even weirder visuals. Twaggies, a website by Kiersten Essenpreis, features illustrations by the extraordinary @K_Essenpreis. (Essen is the German verb for “to eat” and preis means “praise.” So you better leave some nice comments for her or she’ll twag you most unfavorably.) The other half of the team is David Isreal, @resila, who can’t draw a stick figure much less a twaggie, but does all the other stuff for the blog and hit on the idea for it in the first place. Three additional twaggers have contributed in the past – @yaelbt, @mmbemer and @hsugene.
posted by Fizz at 5:36 AM PST - 13 comments

Weirdly wonderful illustrations from 70s Japanese children's books by Gōjin Ishihara, including much nightmare fuel from the Illustrated Book of Japanese Monsters
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:27 AM PST - 24 comments

And how did DVDs get commentary tracks? Let Bob tell you: You have to understand how much of this stuff is accidental. I knew the guy who was the curator of films at the LA County Museum of Art, and I brought him to New York to oversee color correction. He’s telling us all these amazing stories, particularly about King Kong, because it’s his favorite film. Someone said, “Gee, we’ve got this extra sound track on the LaserDisc, why don’t you tell these stories?” He was horrified at the idea, but we promised we’d get him super stoned if he did, and he gave this amazing discussion about the making of King Kong, which we released as the second sound track.... [via snarkmarket] [more inside]
posted by cgc373 at 5:00 AM PST - 21 comments


Look, I just like guitars. And I think this is the best guitar blog I have ever seen. For example, this great story about a punk rock bass from New Zealand. And this one about the Maton Phil Manning Custom Stereo. And it's always nice to find some good Antipodean content.
posted by awfurby at 3:42 AM PST - 11 comments

July 29

Davis, California is a small town by almost any measure, yet is home to one of the busiest local wikis in the world. The Davis Wiki chronicles the mundane and the bizarre, but also serves more practical information, such as lunch specials, housing guides, news events, and the hours of the local bike collective. In recognition of the outstanding success of the Davis Wiki, the founders were recently awarded a $350,000 grant to develop their Local Wiki software for more general application, including intensive development of wikis in a number of pilot communities. Many communities already have a wiki, though only a few have really taken off; with luck and a bit of a kickstart, the experience of the Davis Wiki founders can be applied to make this invaluable resource available in more cities.
posted by kaibutsu at 11:59 PM PST - 46 comments



Youth Jail Chronicles. [more inside]
posted by serazin at 9:29 PM PST - 8 comments

Between Two Ferns ep. 9: Steve Carell sits down to talk with Zach Galifianakis about "Dinner for Schmucks" but they never quite get around to it. (Previously. nsfw language.) [via]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 7:57 PM PST - 57 comments

In 2009, New Orleans, Louisiana learned that it had the unwelcome distinction of once again being the murder capital of the United States according to the FBI's homicide data. New Orleans' newspaper The Times-Picayune even has a special map for keeping track of murders (with associated twitter account). [more inside]
posted by komara at 7:28 PM PST - 29 comments

"Kids, a film about a bunch of hard-living New York City kids, premiered 15 years ago today. It seems that in many ways the city seems to have forgotten the film, just as many of those involved in the film also seem happy to forget it." Proof that 80s New York was Hella Real (courtesy TMN).
posted by geoff. at 6:50 PM PST - 123 comments



Reason.tv heads to the set of Atlas Shrugged Part One to offer viewers a rare behind-the-scenes glimpse of this most anticipated film. Previously. Previouslier.
posted by chavenet at 4:19 PM PST - 83 comments

Portraits by Richard Dumas; a page (one of many) of actors and directors; a Brooklyn gang (photographed by Bruce Davidson) in 1959; photographs by Ernesto Bazan. Clive Limpkin. Some Warhol Polaroids. Film set photographs and portraits by Brigitte Lacombe. Photographs by: Dennis Hopper [nsfw], Weegee [nsfw], Jeff Bridges, Julia Calfee [nsfw], Ed Templeton [nsfw], Lauren Dukoff, Robert Frank, Sid Grossman and Allen Ginsberg. A Princeton Dance Weekend in 1960, an American family vacation in 1950, Los Angeles, Coney Island, et cetera. A diverse livejournal collection of photographs.
posted by xod at 3:35 PM PST - 14 comments

This November, California citizens will decide whether or not to legalize the possession, buying and selling of, and recreational use of marijuana. Early polls concerning proposition 19, also known as the "Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010", reveal a slight majority for legalization, as well as an interesting case of status quo bias. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by Taft at 2:26 PM PST - 101 comments

"I showed it to my two young sons, 9 and 12, who both immediately felt sorry for Aisha and asked why anyone would have done such harm to her." [WARNING: Graphic image.] Richard Stengel, managing editor of Time magazine, on why he chose to run on the magazine's cover a photo of a young woman whose nose and ears had been cut off at the insistence of the Taliban. It accompanies the article "Afghan Women and the Return of the Taliban."
posted by ocherdraco at 2:10 PM PST - 142 comments

Photographer Peter Tangen has been taking portraits and creating posters featuring self-declared real life super heroes like Geist, the Crimson Fist, and Life at The Real Life Super Hero Project. [more inside]
posted by Shepherd at 1:50 PM PST - 13 comments

Tired of not being able to find your luggage at the carousel? Whether you find them funny or twisted (or both!), luggage with these stickers will certainly stand out from the rest of the luggage. On the other hand, using them may also earn you a body cavity search. Will the lulz be worth it? CBC's and Jezebel's take on the stickers.
posted by deborah at 1:48 PM PST - 86 comments

Beans are bullets. Potatoes are powder. An exhibition of food posters from the National Agricultural Library.
posted by mudpuppie at 1:26 PM PST - 13 comments

Phytoplankton Population Drops 40 Percent Since 1950. Estimates are that the population of these little critters that form the base of the global food chain and that "also gobble up carbon dioxide to produce half the world's oxygen output" is declining by roughly one percent annually. One possible causal factor cited for the decline is global warming. The latest findings on that issue are out, too, and in case you were still wondering: Ten key indicators show global warming "undeniable". [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 12:48 PM PST - 60 comments

In the year 2182 -- 172 years time -- there's a 1 in 1000 chance that we might be hit by a very large asteroid. With two centuries advance notice, will we be able to develop effective asteroid deflection techniques? [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:30 PM PST - 53 comments

"In a way I wish it did not require such a formidable technique, because I do not really enjoy sweating over this music." This is virtuoso pianist Marc-Andre Hamelin speaking of Charles-Valentin Alkan, the Romantic pianist said to have made even Liszt nervous, and whose exhilarating works fell into obscurity due to their rigorous technical demands. For a warm-up, here's Alkan's major etude "Allegro barbaro", as performed by Jack Gibbons. A machine recording of his piece Le Chemin de Fer in which you can see the keys being pressed. Recordings of Youtube exist of people attempting his near-impossible Scherzo focoso (and, for comparison, a mechanical rendition of the same). And for encore, here is Hamelin again playing Les Quatre Ages, frequently considered Alkan's most mature work, a sonata depicting the four ages of man.
posted by Rory Marinich at 12:04 PM PST - 20 comments


More women in the developed world are choosing not to have children. 'So why do friends, family, colleagues and even strangers think it's OK to question their decision?' 'A woman's fertility status is still very much considered public property. There are still assumptions about women's role in society, about families and about family size."''US Census Bureau says 36% of American women have no children.''Once this was considered insane or unnatural. Even today, it is viewed with suspicion - women with no desire to procreate say they sometimes face awkward questions and disapproval.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 11:39 AM PST - 301 comments

On the morning of June 4th, 1942, US Navy Reserve Commander John Ford awoke to the sounds of a Japanese air raid. [more inside]
posted by TrialByMedia at 9:56 AM PST - 11 comments

Patterns for Personal Web Sites , a guide from 2002-2003 on making best-of-the-web personal sites. [more inside]
posted by domnit at 9:32 AM PST - 25 comments

A mystery man keeps appearing in the background of live news reports. But why? [more inside]
posted by mippy at 9:08 AM PST - 103 comments

With only two missions remaining as they wind down the space shuttle, NASA has a program to make countless dreams of space travel come (partially) true: Fly Your Face in Space. [more inside]
posted by audacity at 8:57 AM PST - 12 comments

In the wake of a deadly clash between Roma (better known as Gypsies) and police in the Loire Valley region of France, French President Sarkozy order the French government to “systematically evacuate” Roma illegal immigrants and dismantle their camps, citing "reasons of public order". [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 8:33 AM PST - 167 comments

The Schoenberg Code is a serial novel in 12 chapters, a parody of Dan Brown’s novel, “The Da Vinci Code,” as retold from a musical perspective by Dick Strawser. And there is much more enjoyable musical reading on his blog, Thoughts on a Train. For example, this three-part article on the strange story of Alban Berg's opera Lulu.
posted by Wolfdog at 8:32 AM PST - 6 comments


Nick Cave brought in to rewrite the remake of The Crow. Nick Cave, named one of Variety's 10 Screenwriters to Watch in 2006, is rewriting the script for the remake of The Crow. Given his work on The Proposition and the sequel to Gladiator (as well as his first novel, And The Ass Saw The Angel), the results should be fascinating.
posted by Mountain Goatse at 8:12 AM PST - 57 comments

DuckDuckGo (previously) is a startup search engine with built-in disambiguation, Wikipedia integration, and a bunch of site-specific searches. It collects no data on its users by default. Founder Gabriel Weinberg blogs and tweets.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 8:12 AM PST - 32 comments

From 1945 to 1946, Leonard Rudoff served as Apprentice Seaman, 3rd Class on the troop transport USS Gen. H.F Hodge as it made its way to India, Egypt, NYC, and San Francisco. And he took photos along the way..[via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 7:18 AM PST - 6 comments

Screwworms, once the scourge of livestock (as well as pets and occasionally humans [link to VERY GRAPHIC slideshow]) throughout the Western Hemisphere, have been eradicated from the United States since 1966. In addition to constant vigilance by veterinary services and livestock handlers, who treated wounds immediately and set traps [link to 1920s informational film], the method which ultimately led to control of this horrifying pest is sterile insect technique. Maps showing the progress of the technique can be seen here. The USDA's National Agriculture Library maintains a special collection on the Screwworm Eradication Program. Here is a good overview of the problem and the USDA's solution, complete with (somewhat gruesome) pictures and videos. [more inside]
posted by fiercecupcake at 6:42 AM PST - 58 comments


His first recording of it from the late sixties. A video filmed in 1978 of Burnside playing Jumper on the Line outside his home in Independence, MS. It's part of the Alan Lomax Archive. R.L. plays it acoustic in 1984. R.L.'s son Duwayne plays it this summer with Kenny Brown, R.L.'s former sideman.
posted by zzazazz at 5:50 AM PST - 2 comments

Ricky Jay had a TV special in 1989 - Learned Pigs and Fireproof Women - based on the book of the same name, which featured magic, juggling, amazing feats, stunts, and performances, including a musical performance on wine glasses, a human calculator who could determine cube-routes of numbers in her head, and an antique acrobatic clockwork doll. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3). (Previously and previously and previouslier)
posted by twoleftfeet at 5:32 AM PST - 18 comments


RIP Trinity Square, Gateshead - a Brutalist car park made famous for it's appearance in the classic British crime drama Get Carter is being demolished this week.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 4:59 AM PST - 50 comments

The 2010 Booker longlist is out, and it seems that most of the buzz in the UK is about who's not on the list. The Guardian article "Amis-free Booker prize longlist promises to 'entertain and provoke'" introducing the list of 13 nominees actually devotes its headline, subhead, and most of the first four paragraphs to the subject of who's missing in action: Amis, McEwan, Rushdie. Elsewhere in the Guardian Books section, research professor Gabriel Josipovici pulls no punches in including these (former?) darlings of the glitterati in his assertion that Feted British authors are limited, arrogant and self-satisfied, compares them to "prep-school boys showing off," calls them "virtually indistinguishable from one another in scope and ambition," and muses that the fact that they have won so many awards is "a mystery." [more inside]
posted by taz at 3:46 AM PST - 50 comments



Chris Al-Aswad, founder of the online arts journal Escape Into Life and author of the arts blog The Blog of Innocence, has passed away at age 31. [more inside]
posted by neushoorn at 12:45 AM PST - 6 comments

July 28


Facebook jumps on the Metafilter Bandwagon with New Q&A Offering. Other recent entrants in our market include Ask.com, which is relying on experts to answer questions, Aardvark which asks your friends to do the work, and our favorite love-to-hate-em, Yahoo answers which is teaming with both terrible (hilarious) questions and answers. The Facebook offering will be totally public and searchable by google, with questions answerable by anyone with a Facebook account. It looks like the questions you ask will be tied to your real profile. Anyone in the Beta have a screen shot?
posted by paddingtonb at 9:22 PM PST - 68 comments

Catalonia bans bullfighting. Via The NYTimes "Lawmakers in the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia voted to ban bullfighting on Wednesday, dealing the most significant blow so far to a tradition considered by many Spaniards to be an essential part of their cultural patrimony. In many ways, however, the ban reflected less on the animal rights than on a political debate over Catalan identity and a push by local parties for greater independence from the rest of Spain. With the strong support of separatist parties, the ban passed by a larger margin than expected: 68 to 55, with 9 abstentions. It is to go into effect in 2012." [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 9:18 PM PST - 34 comments

Damon Lindelof to rewrite Alien Prequel?
Collider says "Lindelof reportedly met with Scott and 20th Century Fox to talk about the gig, but also ended up sparking a discussion that “could well turn out to be a free-standing science fiction film.”
Thumbs up? Down? I wasn't a fan of 'Lost', but Ultimate Hulk vs. Wolverine did the trick for me...
posted by vhsiv at 8:00 PM PST - 87 comments

Hockey Star is the latest in Seattle accordionist Jason Webley's collaborative EP series. Recorded with Big Little Dipper Dipper, it's described as "dance music from the early 90's of the future". [more inside]
posted by mannequito at 5:35 PM PST - 5 comments

Feeling like you need something to balance the scent of sandalwood and musk after reading this list of famous man caves (including Jefferson's study, Douglass' office, Edison's library, and Roosevelt's trophy room)? If so, you may be interested in seeing the inner sanctums of some of history's most influential women. Check out Eleanor Roosevelt's living room (picture/info), Marie Curie's laboratory (picture/info), Margaret Mead's room in Samoa (picture/info), Maya Angelou's parlor (picture/info), Susan B. Anthony's study and bedroom (more pictures and info), Georgia O'Keefe's sitting room (picture, info), Helen Keller's childhood bedroom (picture, info), and Frida Kahlo's studio (picture 1, picture 2/info). [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 4:57 PM PST - 23 comments

Does your ferret need a beret? Well, have I got the product for you!!! source [more inside]
posted by granted at 4:48 PM PST - 61 comments

Tempus I, an artistic look at the English countryside, and Tempus II, super slow motion video of stuff being destroyed. From up and coming video photographers James Adair and Philip Heron; with music from Moby's Play the B Sides. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 4:42 PM PST - 8 comments

Bugs Bunny just turned 70. So did Elmer Fudd. Their simultaneous debut came 70 years ago yesterday, in A Wild Hare. Be vewwy, vewwy quiet.... Previously: Tex Avery
posted by chavenet at 4:14 PM PST - 59 comments

The Intimidator was created by Michigan machinist GarE Maxton. Here's his portfolio. (Previously.) [Via MAKEblog.]
posted by GrammarMoses at 4:06 PM PST - 21 comments

“When I unveil the truth, a monster appears from his hiding place; barbaric in thinking and action, angry and blind; wearing death as a dress and covering it with a belt; “He speaks from an official, powerful platform, terrorising people and preying on everyone seeking peace; the voice of courage ran away and the truth is cornered and silent, when self-interest prevented one from speaking the truth.”
With these words, delivered in full traditional dress, Hissa Hilal, mother of four, housewife and Saudi feminist advanced to the final round earlier this year in Abu Dhabi’s Million’s Poet television show. With a poem (partially translated above) inspired by what she terms subversive fatwas. In the finals she took 3rd place with the following: [more inside]
posted by edgeways at 2:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Move over Jay-Z and Alicia Keys: Newport State of Mind, Morgan Jane Delaney's witty take on a future classic, which might get released as a single.
posted by MuffinMan at 2:41 PM PST - 37 comments

Football (Soccer) in the USA has a much longer history than many people think. In fact, the first International Match outside of the British Isles was between the USA and Canada in 1885, played at Newark, New Jersey. [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 2:16 PM PST - 25 comments

Celestial Soul Portraits
posted by empath at 1:36 PM PST - 76 comments


When the State of Israel was founded in 1949, along with the arable land they inherited a vast, arid desert called the Negev. At that time, David Ben-Gurion envisioned it as Israel's last frontier. Today, as Israel bulldozes unrecognized Bedouin settlements there, this low-key narrative in Zionist history is getting a little more sunlight. [more inside]
posted by shii at 1:02 PM PST - 45 comments

"Mom! Bethany won't let me play Doodle Jump!" Because there's a story behind every emoji-laden review app review.
posted by cgomez at 12:57 PM PST - 14 comments

Kevin Kelly has posted a list of what he believes are the best magazine articles ever.
posted by reenum at 12:26 PM PST - 88 comments


Cathy Berberian (warning: auto opera audio!) was not your usual mezzo-soprano. Her vocal range was only exceeded by her range of musical interest (multi-YouTubage follows) [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:07 PM PST - 6 comments

5 Stupid, Unfair and Sexist Things Expected of Men by Greta Christina
posted by rebent at 11:51 AM PST - 212 comments


"Since the beginning of time, there has been struggle. The epic clash of being against being. Tyrannosaurus Rex vs. Triceratops. Giant Squid vs. the Sperm Whale. The Circle vs. the Square. The struggle is forever. It makes the world turn around... This is a chronicling of some of the greatest confrontations in FILM HISTORY. The greatest moments of melee. These are the GREAT SHOWDOWNS. [more inside]
posted by carsonb at 10:38 AM PST - 21 comments

The creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender have confirmed that they will be making a new miniseries, set 70 years in the future. Despite the poor critical reception of the live-action Shyamalan adaptation, the animated world will continue. [more inside]
posted by Greg Nog at 9:41 AM PST - 107 comments

[Infographic-Filter] Fools Gold: Inside the Glenn Beck Goldline Scheme. [more inside]
posted by griphus at 9:03 AM PST - 170 comments

Local TV news says: Based on his daughter having an ultrasound and grandson being autistic, doctor concludes that ultrasounds cause autism. This news story headline is: "Could autism be linked to ultrasounds?," fueling freak out fire. This is another example of correlation versus causation in the media, and in this story, based on speculation and no evidence. But what does the journal article say? [more inside]
posted by k8t at 8:25 AM PST - 138 comments

Learn Your Damn Homophones
posted by silby at 8:09 AM PST - 153 comments

Shared social responsibility - When customers could pay what they wanted in the knowledge that half of that would go to charity, sales and profits went through the roof ... Gneezy describes the combination of charitable donations and paying what you like as 'shared social responsibility', where businesses and customers work together for the public good. (via mr) [also see 1,2,3]
posted by kliuless at 7:49 AM PST - 19 comments


Artist Scott Marr carves vintage records by hand with a dremel.
posted by gman at 4:34 AM PST - 45 comments

July 27

Epic Sax Guy [more inside]
posted by Kattullus at 10:36 PM PST - 51 comments

Fire the Bastards... examined the initial 55 reviews that appeared in response to the publication of William Gaddis's masterpiece The Recognitions. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 10:14 PM PST - 44 comments

I'm Basil Marceaux dot com, the Republican candidate for Governor. I like to recall all permit, and registration, for guns. Everyone carry guns. If you kill someone though, you get murdered, you go to jail, and uh, I'd like to put... plant grass or vegetation across in the state on any vacant lot, and sell it for gas, so we can use it for our expenses. Also, I'm gonna remove all gold fringe flags from the state and fly the real flag with three stripes. I also wanna stop traffic stops; set it up like the Supreme Court ruled in Knowles v Iowa: you can't find innocent car, you can't look. I want you all to vote for Basil Marceaux. I want to say the Pledge of Allegiance to a Republic in the morning when you come out... and we all pray to God and say Amen and everyone... have a nice day. And I'll see you all at the polls. Thank you... have a nice day. [more inside]
posted by joannemerriam at 10:08 PM PST - 93 comments

Keeping Cool at Lower Cost. A fine summary of the latest innovations in the technology of air conditioning. e.g. "If [fan] blades were designed for better aerodynamic efficiency, instead of being stamped from sheet metal as cheaply as possible, the electricity consumption of many cooling systems could be cut by a third.". Includes a look at how to cool a building using hot water in a device called a thermal cooler.
posted by storybored at 8:40 PM PST - 26 comments

These images, by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information, are some of the only color photographs taken of the effects of the Depression on America’s rural and small town populations.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:00 PM PST - 83 comments

A collection of glass-plate negatives purchased for $45 at a garage sale a decade ago has been authenticated as lost early work of Ansel Adams, potentially worth $200 million.
posted by Mr. Anthropomorphism at 6:28 PM PST - 50 comments

Ancient books inherited in private family libraries could change our knowledge of late mediaeval arab culture, but most are hidden in private libraries. Gripping article about the unknown treasures that may be lurking in Mauritanian family libraries, considering the little that has already been found, resistance to cataloguing and problematic future if the region continues to be destabilised. How the manuscripts are famous in the muslim world.More on the open libraries and archive efforts. Some years back on bbc i saw an explorer track down some ancient ethiopian christian manuscripts to an ethiopian monastery, only to be shown some burnt remains from a fire a few months back. What treasures must lurk in this continent, and with digital cameras, how easy to document them without damage or intruding on their owners! Being christians, there are pictures and some history.
posted by maiamaia at 5:18 PM PST - 13 comments

Lenny makes tiny boats from natural flotsam and jetsam. His creations inspired a community art project called Little Drifters. Participants in Vancouver set their boats adrift on Trout Lake this past Saturday. (via) [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 4:20 PM PST - 15 comments

Math Is No Match for Locust Swarms. "Mathematicians have now figured out the dynamics that drive locusts across the landscape, devastating everything underfoot — and the math says people will never be able to predict where the little buggers will go. The new analysis, reported in an upcoming issue of Physical Review E, suggests that random factors accumulate and influence how swarming locusts collectively decide to change course. “These swarms are driven by intrinsic dynamics,” says team member Iain Couzin, a biologist at Princeton University. “In all practical terms, predicting when a swarm is going to change direction is going to be impossible." More information here.
posted by Fizz at 3:37 PM PST - 27 comments

You think people know what you are thinking. You think that you are rational. You even think that life is fair. Actually, you are not that smart.
posted by ejoey at 3:22 PM PST - 66 comments

Warren Jeffs, former President and Prophet of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, will get a new trial, after the Utah Supreme Court overturned today his conviction on two counts of rape as an accomplice. [more inside]
posted by quodlibet at 2:50 PM PST - 19 comments


Sometime Sunday evening, an oil pipeline burst over Talmadge Creek near Marshall, Michigan, spilling an estimated 840,000 gallons of oil into the Kalamazoo River. [more inside]
posted by Baby_Balrog at 1:50 PM PST - 31 comments

Invasion: You think it'd be impossible to share your house with your wife, your daughter, and fifty million or so Argentine ants (previously on MetaFilter). And you would be correct [Via].
posted by infinitywaltz at 1:41 PM PST - 106 comments

Paper receipts - including receipts from McDonald’s, CVS, Whole Foods, Wal-Mart, and the U.S. Postal Service - are a major source of endocrine-disrupting bisphenol-A. The total amount of BPA on tested receipts was 250 to 1,000 times greater than other, more widely discussed sources of BPA exposure, including canned foods, baby bottles and infant formula. BPA transfers readily from receipts to skin and can penetrate the skin to such a depth that it cannot be washed off.
posted by stbalbach at 11:42 AM PST - 111 comments


With a population of 36,664 and 2.5 square miles in size Bell, California is number thirteen in the twenty-five smallest cities in the United States. Median annual household income is about $36,000; per capita income for the city is $9,905 with 24.1% of the population below the poverty line. Residents of this tiny city "have a higher property tax rate than homeowners in Beverly Hills." A recent L.A. Times investigative report has revealed that exorbitant salaries are being paid to city officials. Chief Administrative Officer Robert Rizzo collects an annual salary of $787,637 with 12% increases scheduled every July. Assistant City Manager, Angela Spaccia collects $376,288 with a similar 12% annual pay increase. Police Chief Randy Adams who runs a 46-person department earns $457,000, which is 33% higher than that of his Los Angeles counterpart. And ... part-time city council members collect almost $100,000 a year each.* The District Attorney is investigating why the part-time council members take-home $8,083 per month while a $400 monthly stipend was expected. [more inside]
posted by ericb at 10:53 AM PST - 87 comments

Reader's Almanac is a new blog devoted to the authors published in the Library of America. Posts so far have featured film shot by Zora Neale Hurston, audio recordings of William Faulkner, and Walt Whitman's astronomical inspiration.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:53 AM PST - 4 comments

The Amiga, 25 years later
posted by Artw at 9:13 AM PST - 100 comments

Three hokey lingerie shots on my bed would take all of five minutes to shoot and upload to Erotic Services, and whenever I had enough business, I could take the ad down. It would be like I—or “Sarah,” the kinky temp who loved to blow off work early and meet men for anonymous “encounters”—had never existed. (NSFW)
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 7:21 AM PST - 100 comments

Kich-Gorodok. Olya Ivanova went to a locality in the Vologda Region of Russia in order to "photograph the inhabitants of dying Russian villages." The results are striking and occasionally reminiscent of Depression-era photographs of America. [more inside]
posted by languagehat at 6:48 AM PST - 43 comments

Crap at My Parent's House: Homage to all of the weird crap that everyone's parents have. Via
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 6:11 AM PST - 83 comments

The ACLU of Maryland is defending Anthony Graber for violating Maryland wiretap laws because he recorded a video of a plain clothes officer drawing a gun during a traffic stop without first identifying himself as a police officer. The Maryland State Police raided Graber's parents' after learning of the video on YouTube. Another person has since been similarly charged under the same statute. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 5:01 AM PST - 141 comments

Karakuri ningyō (からくり人形?) are mechanized puppets or automata from Japan from the 17th century to 19th century. There are many beautiful examples: Arrow shooting, serving tea, the geisha, acrobatics, making magic. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:16 AM PST - 25 comments


Internet Forever - a band who are nostalgic for Geocities. Modern webpage here.
posted by mippy at 1:37 AM PST - 16 comments

Spin's 25th Annivesary: 5 nights of live music. I am a day late with this as the Smashing Pumpkins played last night, but you can see the rest of the free live streaming concerts this week, in order, one per night, The Flaming Lips, The Black Keys, The National, and Spiritualized. [more inside]
posted by lee at 1:18 AM PST - 19 comments

No one asks or answers this question: How does such an escalation benefit the drug smuggling business which has not been diminished at all during the past three years of hyper-violence in Mexico? Each year, the death toll rises, each year there is no evidence of any disruption in the delivery of drugs to American consumers, each year the United States asserts its renewed support for this war. And each year, the basic claims about the war go unquestioned. Who Is Behind the 25,000 Deaths In Mexico?
posted by HP LaserJet P10006 at 12:12 AM PST - 60 comments

July 26

Scientists in Israel have developed a system that allows (some, not all) people who are "locked in" to type messages by simply holding and releasing their breath. The system was also adapted to control a wheelchair, notably in a manner that can't be disrupted by jarring or bumpy terrain. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious at 10:35 PM PST - 8 comments




"When I say Alvin, you say Greene." - So begins a promotional rap video* endorsing United States Senate candidate Alvin Greene (previously).
* - Link to Countdown segment on MSNBC that includes the video [more inside]
posted by ODiV at 7:11 PM PST - 46 comments

THEY ARE ON A TEAM. Beginning today and for the next two weeks, Chris Hastings' Dr. McNinja (prev.) and Ethan and Malachai Nicolle's Axe Cop (prev.) will share a single story line, with half of the story appearing on each webcartoonists' site.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 2:11 PM PST - 22 comments

Early into the Egypt-Italy Science Year 2009, a crater was found by a research team with Google Earth on the hyperarid southern edge of Egypt. Not associated with the earlier documented Clayton craters located in the south-east corner of Egypt, the recently discovered crater is unique for its untouched, pristine nature that appears more similar to other planets and moons with thin atmospheres, even though the impact has been estimated to be a few thousand years old. The crater, labeled Gebel Kamil, will be the 177th known impact site on Earth, as logged by the Earth Impact Database. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:59 PM PST - 29 comments

I maintain that only an encyclopedic-archaeological turn can save an aging person's attachment to popular culture from descending into ridiculousness. Against Eighties Music by Justin E.H. Smith
posted by xod at 12:56 PM PST - 144 comments

"I was completely aware that I was writing crap," she said. "I was like, 'I hope to God people don't read my advice on how to make gin at home because they'll probably poison themselves.'" PBS MediaShift takes a week-long look at content farms. (Previously)
posted by jbickers at 12:36 PM PST - 73 comments

Bruce Bartlett, senior policy analyst in the Reagan White House, speaks out against Republicans - The monumental hypocrisy of the Republican Party is something amazing to behold. And their dimwitted accomplices in the tea-party movement are not much better. They know that Republicans, far more than Democrats, are responsible for our fiscal mess, but they won't say so. And they adamantly refuse to put on the table any meaningful programme that would actually reduce spending. Judging by polls, most of them seem to think that all we have to do is cut foreign aid, which represents well less than 1% of the budget. [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 11:22 AM PST - 156 comments

Screw this song, and screw this band. Back when Coors was still a mystery east of the Mississippi, this fellow sounded like what Colorado looked like.
posted by timsteil at 11:19 AM PST - 25 comments

Chelsea Baker throws like a girl. Of course, she is a 13 year old girl, so that is to be expected. She is a pitcher that went 12-0 with 2 perfect games in the Plant City FL Little League this season. She hasn't been tagged with a loss in 4 years. Her secret is the knuckleball that was taught to her by a former coach, retired MLB pitcher Joe Niekro.
posted by COD at 10:47 AM PST - 142 comments

Has DRM just been dealt a crippling blow? "Today [the US Copyright Office has] designated six classes of works. Persons who circumvent access controls in order to engage in noninfringing uses of works in these six classes will not be subject to the statutory prohibition against circumvention."
posted by griphus at 10:43 AM PST - 57 comments

How Do You Treat Rabbit Phobia? With rabbits. A German student who claimed her teacher was terrified of rabbits was exonerated in a defamation suit on Tuesday when the judge determined that the teacher did, indeed, have a raging case of leporiphobia. The bizarre story began when a chalk drawing of a bunny caused the teacher to cry and flee her classroom. How do psychologists treat rabbit phobia?
posted by Fizz at 10:40 AM PST - 65 comments

What should medicine do when it can't save your life? Atul Gawande looks at the system of final-stage treatment for terminal patients, which, despite more than 40 years of a hospice movement for better end of life care, often ensures that patients die exactly how they least want to: in a hospital, hooked up to machines. Gawande tries to envision how, "when the chemotherapy stops working, when we start needing oxygen at home, when we face high-risk surgery, when the liver failure keeps progressing, when we become unable to dress ourselves" medical care can focus on quality of life, rather than prolonging it. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 9:53 AM PST - 36 comments

The Pasadena architectural firm of Greene & Greene was one of the foremost exponents of the Arts & Crafts movement. Their "ultimate bungalows," including the Gamble, Thorsen, and Blacker Houses (and a host of modern-day disciples) stand testament to the enduring elegance of their work, but for a fuller examination of the brothers' design process, delve into the thousands of blueprints, drawings, and photos at the Greene & Greene Virtual Archives.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 9:18 AM PST - 25 comments

Vacation Necronomicon School Join us as we explore the writing of H. P. Lovecraft and work inspired by the mythos he created. We will post one assignment per day for 13 unholy days, beginning 26 July 2010.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:19 AM PST - 32 comments

(1) Can James Franco possibly be for real? (2) If he is, then—just logistically—how is all this possible? He’s just flown back from Berlin this afternoon, he says, and he has a 35-page paper due tomorrow. Next weekend he has to shoot a student film, because in two weeks he’ll be flying out to Salt Lake City to start acting in a movie called 127 Hours, director Danny Boyle’s follow-up to Slumdog Millionaire, in which Franco will play a hiker who gets pinned by a boulder and has to amputate his own arm. Revisions are due soon on his book of short stories, which will be published in October by Scribner. He’s trying to nail down the details of an art show that will be based, somehow, on his recent performance on the soap opera General Hospital. Also, he has class every day, which—since he’s enrolled in four graduate programs at once—requires commuting among Brooklyn, Greenwich Village, Morningside Heights, and occasionally North Carolina.
posted by geoff. at 7:58 AM PST - 152 comments

The Triumph Of The Crayolatariat - a reflection on the iconic status of the old Crayola factory tour. You can take the new tour and see boots worn by an actual worker, but the manufacturing process is now a performance piece. [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia at 7:38 AM PST - 19 comments

The New Science of Morality: An Edge seminar featuring talks (with full video, audio and text transcripts) by Paul Bloom, Roy Baumeister, Joshua Greene, Jonathan Haidt, Sam Harris, Marc Hauser, Josua Knobe, Elizabeth Phelps, and David Pizarro.
posted by AceRock at 7:22 AM PST - 24 comments


PizzaCam is a youtube channel of Chuck E. Cheese promotional videos, training tapes and ephemera from 1988-1999. From the official video archives of ShowbizPizza.com a fan site devoted to the history and legacy of the (penultimate) amusement park restaurant. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 5:12 AM PST - 26 comments

Old School Color Cycling with HTML5
This was a technology often used in 8-bit video games of the era, to achieve interesting visual effects by cycling (shifting) the color palette. Back then video cards could only render 256 colors at a time, so a palette of selected colors was used. But the programmer could change this palette at will, and all the onscreen colors would instantly change to match. It was fast, and took virtually no memory. [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 2:38 AM PST - 40 comments

July 25

The first episode of season four of Mad Men (so much previously [meta-previously]) aired tonight. Shortly after, the first "Mad Men"': A Conversation blog entry was posted on the Wall Street Journal's Speakeasy blog. There will be a post for every episode. [more inside]
posted by silby at 9:51 PM PST - 112 comments


Remember "Bergen to Oslo from your armchair"? Last year, Norwegian broadcaster NRK made a 7.5 hour documentary following the train from Bergen to Oslo, for every minute. Here's the sequel: a 27 minute documentary following the new light rail train in Bergen, minute by minute through 9,8 kilometers. [more inside]
posted by iviken at 5:39 PM PST - 22 comments

Starcraft 2 is about to be released, but there is already a thriving worldwide competitive scene. Perhaps the 2 biggest tournaments of the recent public beta were the HDH invitational and the ongoing King of the Beta tournament. Aside from players making a name for themselves, a number of commentators or 'casters' have as well. Links to some of the best played or commentated games of the beta are below the fold. [more inside]
posted by empath at 4:56 PM PST - 109 comments

Googlelittrips is a website that utilizes Google Earth to show readers the important locations in books they are reading. [more inside]
posted by TrarNoir at 4:22 PM PST - 10 comments

The New York Times, The Guardian, and Der Spiegel have been given access to approximately 92,000 classified Afghanistan war documents provided to WikiLeaks.
posted by lackutrol at 2:59 PM PST - 186 comments

"Although a fan of Led Zeppelin, Stefan [Gates] confesses he has never listened to Houses Of The Holy, which was released in 1973. 'It carries too much significance for me,' he said. 'A part of me wants to go out to the Giant's Causeway with a big pair of speakers, strip naked and play it just to see if I have some kind of great epiphany.'" Gates, a well-known British food writer and television presenter was, with his older sister, one of the children photographed for the album cover which features them naked and covered in automobile paint, climbing over the Giant's Causeway in Northern Ireland. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 2:28 PM PST - 47 comments

Accidental Penis (via and previous penis).
posted by cjorgensen at 12:56 PM PST - 48 comments

How to Write About Haiti
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:18 PM PST - 37 comments

The Web Never Forgets. Are youthful indiscretion verboten in this digital age? As we grow and move forward - we make mistakes, we say things we later regret, or we change our mind about stuff all the time. But in era where even the things we actrually mean to say, can be taken out of context, posted, and used as a political weapon, is there room for just being silly online anymore?
posted by helmutdog at 12:02 PM PST - 105 comments

Jane Austen's Fight Club. [SLYT]
posted by Tesseractive at 11:47 AM PST - 51 comments

Org-Mode! Need help Getting Things Done(tm) but bogged down by intuitive keystrokes and GUI interfaces? Emacs to the rescue! Here's a Basic Tutorial, an Advanced Tutorial, a Compact User Guide, and a Quick Reference Card to help you get started.
On the Go? No problem! MobileOrg app works with iPhone and iPod Touch, and syncs with dropbox. (an android equivalent is in the works). Org-mode also plays great with remember-mode, which lets you quickly add notes without interrupting your workflow. [more inside]
posted by leotrotsky at 11:40 AM PST - 27 comments

The Love Parade is over . 21 years after the first parade in Berlin, disaster strikes and the electro-pop festival that welcomed millions of dance-happy people from all over the world shuts down after a tragic crush in a tunnel that killed 19 people and injured 340. An investigation into the deaths is underway.
posted by dabitch at 9:55 AM PST - 58 comments

Here is a brief history of the Coors Light Halloween promotions of the 1980s. And here is a more detailed history of the first of those promotions, the Coors Light BeerWolf.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 9:47 AM PST - 12 comments

The Rehabilitation of Ernest Gellner - It is easy to imagine why Ernest Gellner would be one of the universally known figures in Anglophone intellectual life. A polymath whose work ranged across anthropology, history, philosophy, and sociology, his mind wrestled with an encyclopedia's worth of nagging questions about nationalism, modernity, civil society, imperialism, Islam, psychoanalysis, ethics and epistemology ... All of this, to repeat, should explain Gellner's monumental prominence – except for the fact that he has no such prominence. (via mr) [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 9:45 AM PST - 7 comments

July 24

TabCandy. A new way to intuitively browse the web.
posted by lazaruslong at 11:02 PM PST - 122 comments

On July 17th, NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite completed its first survey of the entire sky viewable from Earth. After just seven months in orbit, WISE -- a precursor to the planned James Webb Space Telescope -- has returned more than a million images that provide a close look at celestial objects ranging from distant galaxies to asteroids. The first release of WISE data, covering about 80 percent of the sky, will be delivered to the astronomical community in May of next year, but in the meantime we can see some of the images and animations that NASA has released to date: Galleries (containing just a small selection of images): 1, 2, 3, 4. Videos and Animations: 1, 2 [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:15 PM PST - 11 comments

Aaron Copland. If you think you've never heard his music, you're wrong (here's the same piece played on the organ). You can hear an interview with the composer here. And, though it's really hard to see a live performance of his opera, "The Tender Land," you can watch it on YouTube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12. If you want to know more about Copland, watch this documentary. Then there's this analysis of "Billy The Kid." Oh, I could go on and on. I could even post this link to a cool animation set to Copland's "Hoedown." (Yeah, yeah: "Beef. It's what's for dinner.") But the real reason I made this post was to talk about my favorite Copland piece, "El Salon Mexico." I found this clip of Ricardo Montalban playing it. Yes, THAT Ricardo Montalban. And he's RIPPING UP THE PIANO. [more inside]
posted by grumblebee at 9:57 PM PST - 29 comments

A St. Louis woman lost her lawsuit yesterday against Girls Gone Wild. She was dancing in a bar while the crew was filming, and repeatedly refused to flash her breasts, saying "No, no" to the camera. Her top was then pulled down by another woman, and the footage was used without any signed release or the woman's consent. After deliberating for 90 minutes, the jury decided that "Through her actions, she gave implied consent... She knew what she was doing." (Previously.) (Previously.)
posted by karminai at 8:17 PM PST - 230 comments


Alberto Contador of Spain has solidified his third win of the Tour de France, edging out Andy Schleck of Luxembourg with a lead of 39 seconds after the penultimate stage today. The two have ridden an exciting Tour, with last year's winner Contador challenged by the evenly matched Schleck. [more inside]
posted by wundermint at 7:14 PM PST - 43 comments

Let Yourself Feel and Nokta and Reincarnation: just a few samples from hundreds you'll find on the vfxstuff channel at Vimeo.
posted by netbros at 4:47 PM PST - 8 comments

17 Atlantic states want to capture alive then kill and and bury 450 000 Canada Geese. Norman Spinrad says that it's a lot of meat so we should eat them.
posted by bru at 2:18 PM PST - 164 comments

Alex Hurricane Higgins has died after a long battle with throat cancer. R.I.P.
posted by RegMcF at 1:02 PM PST - 20 comments

These are all the Twinkie Denial Conditions described in my “Bad Game Designer, No Twinkie!” Designer’s Notebook columns. Each one is an egregious design error, although many of them have appeared in otherwise great games.
posted by Joe Beese at 12:51 PM PST - 110 comments

San Diego's 2010 Comic-Con International [YT] is so TRON-ed-out that it is being referred to as Comic-TRON. And to be fair, the new TRON Legacy trailer which debuted at this year's Con—with its CGI-powered young Jeff Bridges—almost looks good. But hype aside, for many the real star of the TRON movie is the soundtrack by robot-rock superstars Daft Punk. New tracks appeared this week.
posted by humannaire at 12:28 PM PST - 56 comments

Perhaps, if you are in your 30s, you have remembered a tiny catchy tune all your life, but can't put your finger on what exactly it was. Perhaps it is the theme to the adventures of two French toddlers left alone with a superbly jazzy little soundtrack in a surreal stop-motion land of Mondrian: Chapi Chapo. Avec un tresor! Une perruque! Un Martien! Et un tribute album! And many more!

[MLYT, sweet]
posted by Countess Elena at 11:58 AM PST - 28 comments

Before the Internet, TV, or radio, there was the Telephone Newspaper [more inside]
posted by chrisulonic at 11:46 AM PST - 5 comments

The entire five-part television documentary series Brick City is currently available through Netflix streaming. The four and a half-hour Sundance Channel documentary chronicles the summer and fall of 2008 in the city of Newark, New Jersey. Among the people the series profiles are Cory Booker, mayor of Newark and subject of the great documentary Street Fight; Garry McCarthy, the white, Bronx-born police director whose innovative measures have reduced the murder rate in the city; Ras Baraka, a charismatic poet and activist who is also the principal of Newark Central High school; Jayda Jacques, former Blood gang member who now mentors young women in Newark; Jiwe Morris, author of the book War of the Bloods in My Veins: A Street Soldier's March Toward Redemption; and many other interesting Newark residents like the Street Doctor and Ali Muslim. The series has often been referred to as a sort of real-life version of The Wire, and has been well-received by critics
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 8:56 AM PST - 15 comments

On Self-Delusion and Bounded Rationality A short story by M.I.T. faculty member Scott Aaronson about a woman whose rationality got in the way of her happiness. [more inside]
posted by Obscure Reference at 8:52 AM PST - 92 comments

Obituaries editors probably belong by the sea. The cries of seagulls are their music, fading into infinity, and the light-filled sky bursts open like a gateway out of the world. The elderly gravitate there, shuffling in cheerful pairs along Marine Parade or jogging in slow motion past the Sea Gull Café, intent on some distant goal. Their skin is weathered and tanned, as if they have fossilised themselves in ozone to keep death at bay. They wear bright trainers, young clothes. But they have shifted to the shore here, or in Bexhill, or in Eastbourne, as if to the edge of life, and each flapping deck-chair reserves a waiting-place.
Ann Wroe, obituaries editor of The Economist, muses on mortality and the sea in the latest correspondent's diary, a series of articles by various Economist writers. You can read the magazine's obituaries here, including a recent one of former obituaries editor Keith Colquhoun. [Ann Wroe previously]
posted by Kattullus at 8:08 AM PST - 8 comments

Spacegirl Comic by Travis Charest (via concept ships)
posted by Artw at 8:01 AM PST - 31 comments

Dream Voices: Siegfried Sassoon, Memory and War: artifacts, manuscripts, and illustrations from the diaries and notebooks of the World War I poet, currently on display at Cambridge University Library (exhibition blog), with an accompanying Picasa gallery, and audio slideshow from the BBC.
posted by steef at 7:58 AM PST - 8 comments


Brian May of Queen and the London Stereoscopic Company
posted by puny human at 7:41 AM PST - 11 comments

Thierry Henry is one of the biggest stars in Association Football. With AS Monaco, Arsenal, FC Barcelona and the French national squad, he's won about every trophy that there's to win: 1996-97 French Ligue 1, 1998 World Cup, Euro 2000, 2003-2004 English Premier League, and the unprecedented 2008-2009 "perfect season" for Barcelona: Spanish Copa del Rey, Liga, and Supercopa, European Champions' League, European Supercup, and Club World Cup. He's also won a large number of French, English and worldwide "Player of the Year" accolades. However... [more inside]
posted by Skeptic at 5:52 AM PST - 54 comments

Mark Growden plays many instruments, among them the accordion, banjo, guitar, saxophone and bicycle handlebars. [more inside]
posted by hades at 1:40 AM PST - 4 comments

Metafilter's own zaelic has a blog. For a long time I've been addicted to this blend of music, treyf food and travelogue, but my greatest vicarious pleasure in ages has been in a graveyard.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 1:17 AM PST - 24 comments

In a pilot Phase II study of PTSD sufferers with a median of 19 years since diagnosis, MDMA-assisted therapy resulted in 10 out of 12 patients no longer meeting the diagnostic criteria. [more inside]
posted by daksya at 12:33 AM PST - 88 comments

July 23


Susan Bell, mild-mannered secretary, thinks that pirates, space aliens, and lesbians are only found in pulp adventure novels. Until she is Kidnapped by Lesbian Pirates from Outer Space! And finds out that she's one of them! You don't have to be a lesbian, a pirate or a space alien to read this web comic, but it helps.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 10:05 PM PST - 22 comments

The BBC Proms season is underway, and this year also they are running some 'late night Proms', second concerts held after the first concert of the evening is over. A couple of days ago, the Portuguese pianist Maria João Pires (Wikipedia) took over the cavernous Royal Albert Hall at ten in the evening for an all-Chopin, all-Nocturnes late night recital, attended by nearly 6,000 people. That may sound like a recipe for disaster, but she pulled it off wonderfully; it was an unforgettable experience, and you have until next Wednesday to hear it, on the BBC iPlayer. [more inside]
posted by woodblock100 at 8:04 PM PST - 24 comments

Poetry in Hell contains a complete collection of poems recovered from the Warsaw Ghetto's Ringelblum Archives. The project, which took ten years to complete, gives English translations of poems that are shown in their original Yiddish. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 6:37 PM PST - 9 comments

This week NPR featured a five part series of stories entitled, "New Believers: A religious revolution in China" that explores the growth and status of religion in China today. [more inside]
posted by Atreides at 2:19 PM PST - 65 comments

Flickr user Urtica posts pictures of elusive luna moths, surly bees, gregarious aphids, insect eggs, and of course beetles.
Most of these she finds in her backyard in Framingham, MA. She posts a new Bug picture every single day.
I give you Urtica's Bug of the Day!
posted by vacapinta at 2:15 PM PST - 23 comments

In 1982 John Marino first organized The Great American Bike Race (now known as Race Across America, or RAAM.) The rules were simple: start at the Santa Monica Pier and end at the Empire State Building 2,968 miles with a small support team. Along with Marino were three other riders: Lon Haldeman, John Howard, and Michael Shermer (a decade later being a founding member of Skeptic Magazine.) Haldeman won with a time of 9d 20h 02m with second place, Howard coming in 14 hours later. ABC covered the race that first year as part of their Wide World of Sports [part 1 of 10]. [more inside]
posted by wcfields at 2:04 PM PST - 13 comments

The Government Accountability Office discovered that "23% [of for-profit university graduates] default [on their student loans] after four years compared to fewer than 10% of public-university grads." Unless for-profit universities can prove at least 45% of their students repay their debts (one among a number of benchmarks,) said universities may lose federal funding.
posted by griphus at 1:34 PM PST - 72 comments


SlushPile Hell (tagline: A grumpy literary agent wades through query fails) asks readers to come up with the WORST CHILDREN’S BOOK…EVER
posted by not_the_water at 1:17 PM PST - 46 comments



Iranian kids brush off the government's approved hair cuts. For shame! A video at Al Jazeera's channel about hair drama in Iran. Read the Youtube comments if you have an intolerance-tolerant stomach.
posted by Tarumba at 11:33 AM PST - 24 comments


Mila's Daydreams: "This is my maternity leave hobby. While my baby is taking her nap, I try to imagine her dream and capture it." Almost too cute.
posted by hoskala at 10:48 AM PST - 69 comments

Daniel Schorr is dead at 93. Schorr began a career in journalism which spanned more than six decades at 12 years old, when he wrote a story for the Bronx Home News about a suicide. A woman had jumped from the roof of his building, he phoned the police and then wrote and article about the event, for which he was paid $5. After serving in military intelligence during World War II, he worked as a foreign correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor and the New York Times before joining CBS in 1953 as one of the legendary "Murrow Boys". [more inside]
posted by rollbiz at 10:23 AM PST - 146 comments

Unf**k the Gulf has lots of swearing, lots, they're mad as f**k and are not going to take it anymore. Spend 13 on a Tee and 5 go to unf**king the gulf.
posted by dabitch at 9:18 AM PST - 36 comments


The Kleptones work their mashup magic on The Beatles' Come Together vs. a whole slew of other songs, and then Crumbs Chief turns it into a dance extravaganza. Celebrate your Friday with Come Again. (SLVimeo, 8m17s)
posted by hippybear at 9:12 AM PST - 14 comments

"The Extraordinary World of Ex Libris Art." A collection of bookplates of the famous and the obscure, from Charles Dickens to Greta Garbo to Jack Dempsey. (Via VSL.)
posted by ocherdraco at 8:56 AM PST - 16 comments

Learn a little about the history of computer icons, and the theory behind what makes a good icon. The original computer icons were rather crude, but the art of icons has evolved. Even the once-ugly Windows computer icons have become pretty over the years (a slightly abbreviated one-page version). Among the memorable icons of icons is the once ubiquitous Mac icons of Susan Kare, the "Betsy Ross of the personal computer." [more inside]
posted by blahblahblah at 8:31 AM PST - 39 comments



Harry Beckett RIP Jamaican born trumpeter and flugelhornist Harry Beckett was one of the most hard working and adaptable players in UK jazz, playing with everyone from Chris McGregor to Jack Bruce. He's heard to great effect on this too, which is probably where I first heard him. He wasn't averse to spot of free improvisation either. He'll be much missed.
posted by peterkins at 7:10 AM PST - 4 comments



Free Geography Tools is Leszek Pawlowicz's invaluable collection of GIS links. [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 6:07 AM PST - 13 comments

Graphic designer Brandon Shaeffer blends conceptualism, block graphic, op-art and deco/streamline sensibilities. His movie poster re-designs are particularly fabulous. Much more can be found in his Flickr stream and tumblr blog.
posted by seanmpuckett at 5:59 AM PST - 8 comments

Elektro Guzzi play techno music.
posted by Dim Siawns at 3:21 AM PST - 6 comments

The Dream Machine is a flash point and click adventure game done entirely in claymation. A beta for chapter 1 is available if you sign up with an email address and password, a demo is available without signing up. (via JiG) [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 2:15 AM PST - 10 comments

For Jessica [more inside]
posted by Luddite at 1:57 AM PST - 58 comments


Skid MK is a fiendishly addictive and entertaining Mario Kart clone which has already taken up far too much of my week. Developers Conix Games also made a top-down zombie shooter in the Robotron tradition called Daytraders of the Dead, which is just about as addictive.
posted by Kattullus at 12:49 AM PST - 8 comments

July 22

Fred Phelps and his phreak show decided to picket Comic-Con today. The fans were ready for him.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:57 PM PST - 109 comments

Cow Clicker is a Facebook game about Facebook games. It's partly a satire, and partly a playable theory of today's social games, and partly an earnest example of that genre. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 10:38 PM PST - 22 comments

Photos of Irish Travellers at Dale Farm, by Susan Craig-Greene. [more inside]
posted by shinybaum at 10:18 PM PST - 14 comments

Computer security experts have recently discovered vulnerability/design flaw with Microsoft Windows that has been part of their operating system that effects all versions of Windows since Windows 2000, including XP, Vista, and Windows 7. (1, 2, 3, 4) "The vulnerability exists because Windows incorrectly parses shortcuts in such a way that malicious code may be executed when the icon of a specially crafted shortcut is displayed. This vulnerability can be exploited locally through a malicious USB drive, or remotely via network shares and WebDAV. An exploit can also be included in specific document types that support embedded shortcuts." -- Microsoft [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 8:52 PM PST - 84 comments


In his Scientific American column Bering in Mind, Jesse Bering wrote an article about why we masturbate (previously). Emily Nagoski, a self described feminist "with strong opinions and a big vocabulary", took offense to a line in the column in which he expressed disgust about the idea of researchers gathering and studying vaginal secretions, and wrote about it in her blog Sex Nerd, accusing him of anti-feminism. Bering responds. [more inside]
posted by DZack at 8:46 PM PST - 118 comments

It was the time, when I was eating sashimi at a bar, fiddling with my iPad. A slice of Tuna accidentally dropped on the iPad. At that time, I hurriedly got rid of the sashimi, wiped it off, Later I found that suddenly. In the first place, If iPad were a dish, there are no problem
posted by desjardins at 8:07 PM PST - 53 comments

Digital Encyclopaedia of the Hellenic World is a three volume, drill down* cornucopia of information (some sections not published yet - but often with hover over info) for you to get lost in. [more inside]
posted by unliteral at 8:01 PM PST - 12 comments

Tom Taylor's Twitter project, Low Flying Rocks, scrapes the NASA Near Earth Object database, and tweets when an object passes within 0.2 AU (30 million kilometres/18.6 million miles) of the Earth - something that apparently happens "a few times a week". [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 7:50 PM PST - 9 comments

Stand up comedian and Community star Donald Glover made Internet waves as an unsuccessful candidate to play Spiderman, but his fans may miss his rap career as Childish Gambino, where Glover addresses his struggle to be taken seriously as a musician, the perils of wealth, growing up a nerd, and being in love. Rap lyrics and stand up NSFW. [more inside]
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 7:08 PM PST - 17 comments

Did you like A Very Potter Musical? (previously) Well then, you'll probably want to catch A Very Potter Sequel, just premiered on YouTube after a special showing at Infinitus.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 5:45 PM PST - 8 comments

The Chipophone is a homemade 8-bit synthesizer. [SLYT] So this guy has taken an old organ and re-engineered it into an 8 bit synth to play live chip tune music. [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 4:00 PM PST - 20 comments

The Haunter of the Dark - The H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast presents a superb reading of Lovecraft's last tale by Andrew Leman. Kenneth Hite gives some background to the story, which was part of a in-joke laden trilogy of stories by Lovecraft and Robert Bloch, in which they killed off thinly veiled fictional versions of each other.
posted by Artw at 3:28 PM PST - 35 comments

Earlier this week news bubbled up that a hedge fund manager with a Bond-villain nickname had made a Bond-villain move: "Choc Finger" bought a whopping 241,000 tons of cocoa beans -- 7% of the world's cocoa supply and enough to make 5 billion chocolate bars -- driving prices to 33-year highs. [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 2:55 PM PST - 46 comments

"In our need to restore our sense of self-control are we actually going to reward politicians who are not working to bring us together, but instead are forsaking America's beautiful 234-year history of diversity?" Another Op-Ed from a national newspaper? No, it's the note from Bill in this month's Penzeys Spices catalog (.pdf), introducing a new blend called Arizona Dreaming, which combines the flavors of South of the Border "in ways Americans love so much."
posted by JoanArkham at 2:14 PM PST - 35 comments

"When the eminent French poet Jean Cocteau died last October at the age of 74, his obituaries noted that he had followed an astounding number of part-time careers as well—novelist, playwright, choreographer, film director, critic and artist. But Cocteau's journalistic biographers overlooked the most bizarre of his avocations: he was once the successful manager of a world champion prizefighter." - Sports Illustrated, March 2, 1964 [more inside]
posted by brundlefly at 2:06 PM PST - 15 comments

RIP Walking Man of Silver Lake If you've spent a certain amount of time in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles, chances are that you noticed the Walking Man. Or perhaps one of the two murals he appears in along Sunset Blvd. [more inside]
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 1:39 PM PST - 37 comments

On 1st April 2009, a newspaper seller called Ian Tomlinson was returning to his home, through the middle of the G20 protests. He was not part of those protests. He was struck from behind, by a masked policeman who had covered up his identity numbers, and fell to the ground. A few minutes later, Ian Tomlinson was dead (previously on mefi) Today, the Crown Prosecution Service (motto 'Fair, Fearless and Effective') announced that there would be no criminal charges against the policeman (CPS statement , Guardian coverage). [more inside]
posted by reynir at 1:29 PM PST - 59 comments

The fast food arms race continues to spiral out of control as Carl's Jr introduces a foot-long cheeseburger. [more inside]
posted by superquail at 1:06 PM PST - 84 comments

King Camp Gillette is remembered for an empire built on giving away one half of his product to increase sales for the other half, but the year prior to moment of inspiration that lead to disposable razors, Gillette published a book with a larger scope: The Human Drift. The work of Utopian social planning was focused on a nation-city called Metropolis, to be powered by Niagara Falls. Gillette followed the first book with a second in 1910, World Corporation, which was a revised vision for a better world, now focused as a corporation formed in the Arizona Territory that would grow to encompass the world, with former President Theodore Roosevelt to head up as corporation president. Roosevelt declined the position, and Gillette's Utopian dreams faded. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:05 PM PST - 9 comments



Lessons from a Tailor — directed by Galen Summer and filmed by Ed David. The inspiration for this film came directly from the man himself. When I first met Martin Greenfield at his factory, with the intention of interviewing him for a lifetime achievement award he was receiving for his efforts as an employer and business owner in Bushwick, Brooklyn, it became clear that there was more to his story than mere success in business. Here was a man who had pulled himself up from tragedy and hardship, who had survived one of the most horrific events of the 20th century, the Nazi holocaust, and yet still possessed a lightness of spirit. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:18 AM PST - 2 comments

The Pentagon is currently surveying the troops to gauge their opinion towards gays and the repeal of Don't-Ask-Don't-Tell.  It has recently come to light that previous surveys were done about the fighting man's opinion of 'blacks' and 'jews'. [more inside]
posted by rzklkng at 10:35 AM PST - 71 comments

I find your lack of faith disturbing (previously) is billed as 'another screenwriting blog,' which author Josh Friedman admits we need 'like the world needs another Michael Bay.' Nevertheless, Josh has been blogging off and on for five years now, on topics ranging from his cancer surgery to the ups and downs of free lunches in Hollywood. This week Josh relays a story of finding out a stranger has been using your office for meeting prostitutes.
posted by shakespeherian at 9:57 AM PST - 69 comments

Malnutrition, the silent epidemic - Photojournalist Ron Haviv traveled to Bangladesh to document a silent epidemic that may lack the drama to make the nightly news, but has the power to undermine a world's worth of young lives: childhood malnutrition.
posted by kliuless at 9:54 AM PST - 6 comments

Small amounts of sound can now be harvested by this special fabric to produce very small amounts of current. And what if there was a clever, logic-defying way to possibly greatly enhance the conversion capabilities of such piezoelectric materials? Then maybe I'll get that "Power Suit" I always wanted.
posted by cross_impact at 9:21 AM PST - 18 comments

Are libraries the new cupcakes? They may be the next pop culture phenomenon however.
posted by dancingfruitbat at 7:54 AM PST - 179 comments

A new study suggests that you will gain more weight if you eat meat, even if you eat the same amount of calories as someone who eats less meat. It might be a good idea to cancel that meat party. [more inside]
posted by furiousxgeorge at 7:17 AM PST - 99 comments



Attention Disorders Can Take a Toll on Marriage “It’s been a revelation,” the wife said. “I didn’t realize what a critical piece the A.D.H.D. has been in my marriage.” Treatment of ADD in marriages.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 6:23 AM PST - 42 comments

They called me a child pornographer. A journalist brings a disposable camera to a family camping trip, takes naked pictures of his kids, and gets reported to the police by an Eckerd drugstore photo lab employee.
posted by swift at 6:03 AM PST - 97 comments

Benchmark Reviews review a very, very expensive chair in the most effusive terms. Something rings false in a cosy internet backwater. Further investigation suggests that large sections of the review are lifted from press releases. Shenanigans ensue. The response of Benchmark Reviews to being caught in the act? They permanently ban and then publish the real name and address of the journalist investigating.
posted by jonnyseveral at 5:29 AM PST - 66 comments

My name is Angelica Paez and I have been making collages for over 15 years.
Little has changed since then, except now I use sharp scissors. This is her website
posted by adamvasco at 2:47 AM PST - 8 comments

Quantum Minesweeper . Is regular minesweeper not enough for you? Now you can play on a quantum superposition of multiple boards. Watch the video tutorial or check out the example games. [more inside]
posted by alby at 2:24 AM PST - 20 comments

Frederic Mompou (1893 -1987) composed many often exquisite and mysteriously adventurous minatures for piano. Born in Barcelona, he then went to Conservatory and spent several decades in Paris, and of course was influenced first by Gabriel Faure and Chopin, then Maurice Ravel, Claude Debussy, Francis Poulenc, and notably Erik Satie. Yet, unlike them, he never quite became a "household name" in classical music. [more inside]
posted by Seekerofsplendor at 12:21 AM PST - 13 comments

July 21

In those years I imitated him, to the point of transcription, to the point of devoted and impassioned plagiarism. I felt: Macedonio is metaphysics, is literature. Whoever preceded him might shine in history, but they were all rough drafts of Macedonio, imperfect previous versions. To not imitate this canon would have represented incredible negligence.
From Jorge Luis Borges' eulogy for Macedonio Fernández. Borges' relationship with Macedonio was complicated, as recounted in The Man Who Invented Borges, a fine essay by Marcelo Ballvé. Macedonio's most famous work, the posthumous-by-design work (he believed literature should be aged like good whiskey) The Museum of Eterna's Novel has finally been translated and published in English translation, here is an excerpt from the novel (one of the ninety or so prologues). The introduction to the novel, written by its translator Margaret Schwartz, has been put online by the publisher (parts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Schwartz also sat down for a short interview. You can download an mp3 of a great hour-long panel discussion on Macedonio and a master's thesis on Macedonio by Peter Loggie [pdf]
posted by Kattullus at 11:55 PM PST - 7 comments



The Canadian Government created a stir recently by announcing plans to scrap the compulsory long form census and replacing it with a voluntary questionnaire. Today, the Chief Statistician from Statistics Canada resigned in protest. [more inside]
posted by phyrewerx at 10:24 PM PST - 47 comments

Black people are coming for you white people. Rachel Maddow argues that is the underlying theme of the four major Fox News-only stories of the Obama administration: Van Jones, ACORN, the New Black Panther Party, and now Shirley Sherrod. These stories are largely ignored by the mainstream media, but are being relentlessly pushed by Fox News in an effort to stoke white resentment towards the nation's first African American president.
posted by ND¢ at 8:43 PM PST - 160 comments

After an international campaign was launched by her children, Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani will not be stoned to death. But she still faces death by hanging. Now she's been ordered to give the names of the people campaigning for her. She has also been advised to tell her children to remain silent, or they will be arrested. [more inside]
posted by lexicakes at 7:44 PM PST - 43 comments

Playdead's Limbo released today, and the reviews are glowing. Following on the heels of a spate of well-received independent video game titles like Braid, World of Goo, and Machinarium, we may be seeing a major shift in the habits of video game reviewers. The trinity of duration (short games = bad games), sheer intensity (slow-paced, non-violent games = bad games), and graphical 'realism' (non-3D, non-photorealistic games = bad games) seems to be giving way (somewhat) to a recognition of the value of feel, expressivity, and game mechanics that fit within a holistic experience that integrates art direction, sound design, and storytelling elements. Previously. [more inside]
posted by macross city flaneur at 7:08 PM PST - 45 comments



Mau Piailug passed away last week at 78 years old. He was a Master Navigator from the tiny island of Satawal. In the seventies, he traveled to Hawaii to help the Polynesian Voyaging Society revive the wayfinder's art, navigating by the sun, moon, stars, animals, waves and clouds. In 1976, he steered the Hokule'a, a traditional sailing canoe, from Hawaii to Tahiti without even so much as a compass. He began teaching a new generation of navigators and helped launch a revival of Polynesian culture. To honor him, the Polynesian Voyaging Society is raising money to assist the people of Satawal, while also preparing for a world wide voyage on the Hokule'a, to use their ancient wisdom to help imagine a new relationship to the planet we share.
posted by cal71 at 3:16 PM PST - 18 comments

Every Dr Who Opening Theme Every Dr Who Theme from 1963 to the present. [SLYT]
posted by marienbad at 2:29 PM PST - 94 comments

We Sold Our Souls For Rock 'N' Roll (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) - a documentary on the Ozzfest '99 tour (MLYT) (NSFW - mainly swearing and tits)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:55 PM PST - 47 comments

Ever want to tell the Beta 90 Computer company it was time for a name change? Or maybe you have it in for 2008 and thought that year sucked. A vegetarian Chick-fil-A sandwich request? Or you can submit your own claim and Tucker Nichols has you covered. He'll make a postcard, find the appropriate person, and send it.
posted by cjorgensen at 12:50 PM PST - 14 comments

While mentioned positively in comments, this artist has never had an FPP of her own. Here's a video from her latest release, some lyrics to other classics. These are just a few of my favorite songs by Joan Armatrading, MBE. [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 12:44 PM PST - 24 comments

Hopefully people are familiar with the comic strip Doonesbury and the fact that it is sometimes kept on the editorial page rather than the with the rest of the funnies on the comics page. Doonesbury is also considered to be a fairly American left wing strip. Perhaps you'd be interested in seeing some comics with American right wing politics? The Gentleman from Lickskillet, Day by Day, Mallard Fillmore, and The Leftersons are here to help.
posted by josher71 at 12:42 PM PST - 204 comments

The Thinking Atheist Another atheism site on the internet, featuring a handy list of bible contradictions, a forum, etc. Most notably, they feature a series of slickly produced videos on various religious topics. [more inside]
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 11:52 AM PST - 215 comments



The British Board of Film Classification has updated its website , and as part of the remodel made the Extended Classification Information more visible. And oh the wisdom as the classifiers must justify their actions ... [via] [more inside]
posted by feelinglistless at 11:19 AM PST - 12 comments

This past March, former US President Bill Clinton acknowledged to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that tariff policies his administration championed in the mid-1990's helped destroy Haiti's rice production and contributed to the impoverished nation's inability to feed itself. But while most of the world has stopped paying attention to Haiti's woes, Mr. Clinton has become the de facto leader of the effort to rebuild it after the catastrophic earthquake this past January. Will his influence be enough? Reports from the UN Office of the Special Envoy to Haiti indicate that the reconstruction progress has been slow. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:18 AM PST - 35 comments

Where can you find the Sun, the Moon, nine giraffes, a lion and lamb lying together, the Archangel Michael holding a sword in one hand and the severed head of Satan in the other, all atop a giant crab which is itself standing on a double helix? Well, there is this one statue. [more inside]
posted by davidjmcgee at 9:04 AM PST - 50 comments

A band of the 80's and 90's, that you've very probably listened to, is touring again. If you listened to the radio in 1986, you heard this. In 1991, you probably heard this. If you are a superfan, you've probably got a copy of their live farewell show in Sydney, 1996. If you're a zealot, you probably watched them live on the Jimmy Fallon Show last night. In my humble opinion, one of the most underrated composers and underrated bands around, still.
posted by legweak at 8:52 AM PST - 100 comments


Sabbar Kashur has been convicted of "rape by deception" after having consensual sex with an Israeli woman who believed he was a "Jewish bachelor looking for a long-term relationship." Reports from Jerusalem Post and Al Jazeera. Haaretz asks if this conviction sets a dangerous precedent for future cases. Al Jazeera's English-language Israel/Palestine blogger Sherine Tadros argues the 18-month conviction is racist.
posted by griphus at 7:09 AM PST - 223 comments


Car Salesman Finally Tells The Truth; SLYT; *NSFW* [more inside]
posted by Meatbomb at 6:49 AM PST - 25 comments


From London to St. Petersburg with the Man in Seat 61. Actor Kenneth Cranham travels with Mark Smith, creator of worldwide non-air travel resource website without equal Seat61.com (previously). [more inside]
posted by Happy Dave at 4:03 AM PST - 24 comments

Klikwerk - do as you are told! [Flash, Audio, MC Hammer] [more inside]
posted by le morte de bea arthur at 2:52 AM PST - 5 comments

Want a forest but don't have the space? Get a tree and four mirrors and make your own Unlimited Urban Woods
posted by Baldons at 1:13 AM PST - 58 comments

July 20

When a long train of abuses and usurpation, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of the women under this government, and such is now the necessity which constrains them to demand the equal station to which they are entitled. 152 years ago yesterday was the last day of the Seneca Falls Convention when the Declaration of Sentiments along with an accompanying set of resolutions were signed by 68 women and 32 men. [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 10:56 PM PST - 12 comments

What Really Happened to Phoebe Prince? Six teens remained charged--down from the original nine--in the death of Phoebe Prince, who committed suicide after bullying at school. Legal writer Emily Bazelon of Slate.com continues her investigation of the case with a new three part series: I've wrestled with how much of this information to publish. Phoebe's family has suffered terribly. But when the D.A. charged kids with causing Phoebe's death and threatened them with prison, she invited an inquiry into other potential causes. The whole story is a lot more complicated than anyone has publicly allowed for. [more inside]
posted by availablelight at 10:19 PM PST - 103 comments

It's a busy, chaotic and fragmented world. Maybe we can think slow (previously) and do some long listening. [more inside]
posted by davebush at 9:12 PM PST - 18 comments

Andrea Gibson, slam poet and activist, is not gentle with her truths. Her poetry focuses on gender norms, politics, and the struggles facing queer people today. Her poems include I do, Dive, Blue Blanket, and Photograph.
posted by kylej at 9:12 PM PST - 21 comments

Platt Rogers Spencer was born in 1800 near the Hudson River. His family was too poor to afford paper so Spencer practiced on whatever was handy – leaves, bark, snow and sand – everything was a canvas for handwriting. [more inside]
posted by Sara C. at 8:57 PM PST - 7 comments

Jonathan Ross meets Jim Steranko.
posted by puny human at 8:13 PM PST - 13 comments

About-Face aims to provide women and girls with skills to critically examine media messages that affect their positive self-image. Their website is a one-stop shop for simple, direct, teen-friendly educational materials about female self-esteem and body image. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 7:40 PM PST - 65 comments

Is laundering Mexican drug cartel money too big too fail? Wachovia/Wells Fargo are discovered to be laundering many many billions of dollars. As in $380,000,000,000. Charles Bowden, in a recent interview with Amy Goodman, discusses the everyday reality of what life is like in the border town of Ciudad Juarez, and his most recent non-fiction account of the "Global Economy's New Killing Fields", in the just published book Murder City. Meanwhile, the drug violence now involves car bombs in Ciudad Juarez, the city across the border with El Paso. Guns go out of America, and drugs come in. [more inside]
posted by tarantula at 7:16 PM PST - 48 comments

Darryl Cunningham, author of the graphic novel, Psychiatric Tales (previously), is at work on a new book about science. Topics covered so far include: The Moon Landing Hoax, Homeopathy, and the MMR vaccine scare.
posted by logicpunk at 6:58 PM PST - 8 comments

Tucson's own Calexico has made one of their concerts available (Nuremberg 2009) for streaming and downloading. Calexico's Joey Burns has also been very busy lately with Artists For Action, an Arizona organization that is actively speaking out against AZ's controversial SB 1070. Calexico has a history of hosting benefit concerts in support of various border issues. [via]
posted by .kobayashi. at 5:51 PM PST - 18 comments

We've discussed it before but why not take a look at So You're Going To Fly, a 1939 Popular Mechanics article aimed at first-time flyers.
posted by The Whelk at 5:20 PM PST - 35 comments

The Willard Memorial Chapel is all that remains of the original Auburn Theological Seminary. [more inside]
posted by Mblue at 4:32 PM PST - 4 comments

"Facebook is expected to announce that it has reached the 500 million user mark this week. That's half a billion people in just six years." "...the most visited site on the Internet, may also be the most despised: A new poll says the site scored 64 on a 100-point scale, which 'puts Facebook in the bottom 5 percent' of private sector companies 'and in the same range as airlines and cable companies, two perennially low-scoring industries with terrible customer satisfaction,' according to results of a survey [PDF] released today. * [more inside]
posted by ericb at 4:23 PM PST - 97 comments

Why Back to the Future is secretly horrifying. NSFW, possible trigger alert for use of the "r" word.
posted by lazaruslong at 4:21 PM PST - 129 comments

Rebuilding Chrissy's Face. [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:17 PM PST - 44 comments



Serenity Now. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by blue_beetle at 2:44 PM PST - 28 comments

Courtney Love's new style blog - lovingly assembled by a mystery team, or maybe just Love herself.
posted by Artw at 2:27 PM PST - 37 comments



From the always upbeat and entertaining Paul Woolley Centre for the Study of Capital Market Dysfunctionality comes the publication of the book "The Future of Finance" [more inside]
posted by JPD at 11:21 AM PST - 3 comments

Breitbart strikes again. Conservative media activist and propagandist Andrew Breitbart made news again this week, bringing to light apparent video evidence of racism among the NAACP's ranks, in the form of USDA official Shirley Sherrod, who was allegedly caught on tape in a speech to the NAACP, admitting that race had influenced her decisions not to provide assistance to white farm workers. But despite the fact that Sherrod was summarily dismissed from her USDA post as a result of Breitbart's accusations, the complete, unedited footage of the speech reportedly confirms Sherrod's claims that "her comments were taken out of context... that the anecdote was part of a larger story, one in which she explains how she overcame her initial prejudice" and that in fact, the reported incidents took place before Sherrod worked for the USDA, when she worked for the Federation of Southern Cooperative/Land Assistance Fund. The white farmers described in the story have since confirmed to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that, in fact, Sherrod saved them from bankruptcy. [Via] [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 11:07 AM PST - 291 comments


Dickens' novels ranked. [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 10:28 AM PST - 49 comments



Bill Murray famously does not give interviews—he's sat down for exactly four prolonged media encounters in the past ten years—and when he does, it's never clear what you're going to get. You just have to pray he's in a good mood.
posted by bewilderbeast at 9:01 AM PST - 108 comments

Oppressive treatment of Chinese hipsters reaches new highs. Do you like PBR? Seriously? Then you'll have no problem paying $44 a bottle for it.
Price does not include required champagne flute
posted by yerfatma at 8:30 AM PST - 128 comments

The Will to Music: Nietzsche's Musical Works The recent 2010 Cambridge University Press biography of Nietzsche, Friedrich Nietzche: A Philosophical Biography, by Julian Young, comes with a companion website with 17 free musical compositions of the philosopher in mp3 and an extended commentary. [more inside]
posted by mfoight at 5:43 AM PST - 8 comments

Today mammals are the only surviving members of the Synapsids, but several hundred million years ago, they had company. Meet the dicynodonts: beaked, sabre-toothed herbivores that look like nothing you've seen before. [more inside]
posted by Catseye at 5:23 AM PST - 21 comments

The Nature Sounds Player allows you to create your own soothing mix using .wav files found at The FreeSound Project. [more inside]
posted by gman at 4:46 AM PST - 24 comments

MacPaint and QuickDraw Source Code - The Computer History Museum and Apple, Inc. release the source code to one of the first major drawing tools and graphical libraries for personal computers, one that managed to fit inside a paltry 128 KB of memory. [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:41 AM PST - 64 comments

July 19


Isolated Keith Moon drum tracks for Won't Get Fooled Again and Who Are You? (via)
posted by Crane Shot at 9:20 PM PST - 85 comments

If you don't mind installing Steam and are running a version of Windows, you can download and play Alien Swarm for free. It's a top-down shooter with four-player co-op of you and your friends against the aliens.
posted by demiurge at 8:24 PM PST - 72 comments

Elizabeth Warren (previously: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) is being considered to head the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Other candidates: Michael S. Barr & Eugene I. Kimmelman.
posted by joannemerriam at 7:19 PM PST - 64 comments

Andy Hummel, original bassist in Big Star, died today at age 59, just four months after the death of Alex Chilton. [more inside]
posted by scody at 7:18 PM PST - 25 comments

Conrad Black has been granted bail. Some are saying that he might be free as early as this week, and that he might not end up back in jail again -- instead, being sentenced to time served. He gave up his Canadian citizenship in 2001 so that he could serve in the British House of Lords: where, oh where, will the poor guy live? Here he is either packing, or removing boxes that helped get him into trouble in the first place.
posted by anothermug at 6:41 PM PST - 16 comments


Yellow Face (Part 1 Part 2 Part 3 Part 4 Part 5) is a short documentary (about 50 minutes) that broadly concerns the history of white actors portraying Asian characters in American cinema and, more specifically, reaction to the casting of M. Night Shyamalan's generally reviled recent film, The Last Airbender. (Previously.)
posted by kittens for breakfast at 5:29 PM PST - 70 comments

Police in Orlando, Florida, frustrated with an "epidemic" of false allegations of rape, threaten arrest for all future false reports. The problems of this Florida community reflect research that shows a disproportionately high rate of false accusations of rape relative to other crimes, though studies on the issue are far from uniform, and frequently the center of controversy. [more inside]
posted by Law Talkin' Guy at 5:03 PM PST - 143 comments

35mm by Pascal Monaco. [more inside]
posted by andoatnp at 4:58 PM PST - 6 comments

Retratos Pintados "Since the late 19th century through the 1990s, hand-painted photographic portraits were a common feature in homes in the rural areas of the northeastern Brazilian states. At a time when black-and-white photographs were not considered dramatic enough, the retratos pintados (“painted portraits”) glamorized and idealized their subjects. Black-and-white family photos were enlarged and painted, conferring status on members of the family and portraying them as icons or saints. Using oil washes and other techniques specific to the region, local artisans embellished clothing with pattern and color, smoothed wrinkles, added jewelry or resurrected deceased relatives, illustrating the fantasies and desires of their customers."
posted by puny human at 4:38 PM PST - 7 comments

"All three of the 'Appeal' segments make fun of those pre-movie trailers where celebrities used to ask you to donate money. It's a little shocking to see them using Christopher Reeve begging for money for medical research until you remember this was written years before his accident. Spooky. More celebrities interrupt Chris, arguing over what the point of the Walter Sternberg Foundation is, all of them asking for money, but none of them agreeing on why. Charlton Heston, Robert Vaughn, Clint Eastwood, Mary Tyler Moore, and others show up to argue. They return later to yell at the audience for not giving enough money, accusing them of not caring. Finally, in the third appeal, Chris Reeve just snaps and loses it, furious at the audience. 'I don't know what to say. Words cannot express my contempt for you people. You sit there stuffing your faces in your Reeboks and your Levis 501s. You don't care about the children. You just want to beat the crowd out of the parking lot at the end of the movie. Well, as far as I'm concerned, you can all go f*** yourselves.' Then for the rest of the film, Reeve just randomly shows up in the background of scenes, glaring at the audience with naked disgust." From the never-filmed The Saturday Night Live Movie, written in 1990 by Greg Daniels, James Downey, George Meyer, Tom Davis, Al Franken, Conan O’Brien, and Robert Smigel.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 4:12 PM PST - 17 comments

Arizona has turned off every speed camera on its highways after complaints that they violated privacy and were designed to generate revenue rather than promote road safety. The 76 cameras took 2.7 million photographs, but only 16 per cent of drivers who received a speeding ticket paid up. [more inside]
posted by thescientificmethhead at 3:13 PM PST - 155 comments

In 1940 several Surrealists were biding their time in a Villa near Marseille awaiting their Visa’s to escape from the oncoming Nazis. One way to while away the time was to play the Le Jeu de Marseilles with cards they had made themselves while waiting.
posted by adamvasco at 2:30 PM PST - 9 comments

The Internet Accuracy Project. You may have stumbled on it in a casual search about postal holidays, been drawn in by the charming prose and vintage web design, and stayed to browse the eclectic contents, from plant hardiness zones (USA) to unusual town names. There are also extensive and ostensibly fact-checked celebrity biographies, which are beloved by some astrologists. While the lack of specific references in individual entries may raise eyebrows, there's an extensive defense of the Project's sources and methods. [Yes, I read the Internet Accuracy Project Linking Terms & Conditions.]
posted by Mngo at 1:22 PM PST - 23 comments

Dan Ariely on why online dating is so unsatisfying. [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 12:42 PM PST - 159 comments

[Single-Link YouTube] Startling Production Logos from the 1970's and 1980's.
posted by not_on_display at 10:28 AM PST - 86 comments

Jessye Norman sings with her eyes. (youtube.com) [more inside]
posted by Evstar at 10:11 AM PST - 8 comments


Fracking cattle Mark Bittman, foodie and (accidental) BSG punster.
posted by The3rdMan at 10:00 AM PST - 22 comments


Tom Humberstone has finished his 100 days of drawing a comic each day. Humberstone, who won an Eagle Award for his How to Date a Girl in Ten Days, offers his debut comic, Art School Scum as a free download. He also has a number of other free comics on his site, including a couple for the 69 Love Songs, Illustrated project. [Humberstone's comic about living with Crohn's Disease has been posted previously to MeFi]
posted by Kattullus at 9:18 AM PST - 1 comments

You know about TED, but do you know about the WGBH Forum Network? A project of the venerable Boston public TV station, the Forum is a web platform which aggregates lectures from cultural institutions, museums, libraries, bookstores, and colleges across the US - everything from current research in social science and hard science to author and poet talks. Presentations vary in topic, length, format, and level of eggheadiness, but if you love ideas, you'll find some good stuff here. Streams on demand, downloads often available if you register.
posted by Miko at 9:09 AM PST - 11 comments

The sixth and final Scott Pilgrim graphic novel, subtitled 'Finest Hour' is being released tonight. There is a block party in Toronto to celebrate this fact. While waiting for your copy to arrive or the party to start, why don't you... [more inside]
posted by slimepuppy at 8:36 AM PST - 47 comments

"I wasn't sued, I was never fired, and I survived it. That's my great achievement." Idiosyncratic auteur Todd Solondz speaks about his newest film Life During Wartime, which will finally get a (limited) theatrical release on Friday. The film, originally titled Forgiveness, is ostensibly a sequel to his acclaimed 1998 film Happiness; however, every role has been recast and some details have been consciously ignored. For example, Philip Seymour Hoffman's character Allen [NSFW] is now played by black actor Michael K. Williams of The Wire fame, a tactic Solondz also employed in Palindromes, his divisive fairy tale about abortion. This is the Welcome to the Dollhouse director's fifth feature (he disowned his first one) and his first in six years.
posted by Houyhnhnm at 8:06 AM PST - 42 comments

Natalie Merchant performs arrangements of 19th and early 20th century poetry at TED 2010 [more inside]
posted by nangar at 7:55 AM PST - 8 comments

All Cheat Sheets on One Page Cheat sheets for web designers, programmers, and people who just like cheat sheets.
posted by Deathalicious at 7:02 AM PST - 47 comments

Molly Malone may have been selling more than cockles and mussels out of that wheel barrow. The Guardian reports on a recently rediscovered bawdier version of the song from about 1790. Google Books has a version from 1816 that looks similar (p. 194).
posted by maurice at 6:58 AM PST - 26 comments

Dearest Max, my last request: everything that can be found in my posthumous papers (thus in boxes, cupboards, desks, at home and in the office, or wherever else they may be that you come upon them) of diaries, manuscripts, letters, my own and those written to me, sketches and so on, should be burned unread and without remnant, even all the written or drawn things that you or others have, that you might have asked for in my name. If there are letters that people will not turn over to you, at least they should promise to burn them themselves.”
posted by griphus at 6:51 AM PST - 37 comments

Top Secret America: The top-secret world the government created in response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, has become so large, so unwieldy and so secretive that no one knows how much money it costs, how many people it employs, how many programs exist within it or exactly how many agencies do the same work. [more inside]
posted by ryoshu at 6:29 AM PST - 113 comments

The President of Ireland signed a Civil Partnership Bill for gay couples this morning. The bill had earlier passed through the Dail (lower house of parliament) without opposition, and the Seanad (upper house) after a marathon 23 hour debate, though with only four votes against. The new law provides gay couples with most of the same rights and responsibilities as marriage - tax, social welfare, inheritance. However not everyone is happy about it.[YouTube]
posted by illy at 6:11 AM PST - 19 comments

Having a barbecue this summer? There are any number of safety initiatives to alert you to the dangers inherent in lighting one, but a lot less gets said about how to avoid exposing yourself to carcinogenic compounds. Help is at hand from the American Cancer Society, Younger Clearer Skin, David A. Fein MD from the Princeton Longevity Center and Boris Johnson [YouTube]. Kinda.
posted by The Ultimate Olympian at 5:20 AM PST - 22 comments

It's difficult to swim between most continents. But swimming between Asia and Europe is relatively easy, despite the ordeal of swimming the Mediterranean across the Bosporus, like Leander crossing the Hellespont.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:57 AM PST - 18 comments

Lasers 4, UAVs 0. It's easier to hit things at the speed of light. Raytheon tests a naval anti-aircraft laser, and you can watch it go at the link.
posted by Ella Fynoe at 3:48 AM PST - 58 comments

July 18

DIY medicine on YouTube: A G&M article with plenty of links that I could click on. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 10:31 PM PST - 33 comments

It was supposed to be the iPhone killer. Instead, the Nexus One turned out to be a bust. Google announced today that they were discontinuing the phone despite the rise of Android as an operating system.
posted by Hasai at 10:00 PM PST - 325 comments

Rivers of Ice: Vanishing Glaciers of the Greater Himalaya is an exhibition currently on in New York City, showcasing the work of photographer and mountaineer David Brashears. The Glacier Research Imaging Project is re-imaging historic photos of shrinking glaciers in the Himalaya. [more inside]
posted by wilful at 9:36 PM PST - 13 comments

Dagestan - the place where they know how to really have a wedding party (slyt)
posted by sgt.serenity at 9:05 PM PST - 33 comments

Yet Another YouTube Script, by eugenox. Unlike nearly every other predecessing YouTube userscripts that erratically worked or broke with site revisions, this userscript interfaces with the YouTube Player API to globally control autoplay and playback quality to stop the repeated web annoyance of YouTube autoplay. (It also lets you pick a lower or higher quality video as your default.) [more inside]
posted by WCityMike at 7:44 PM PST - 8 comments

Cows & cows & cows. From Cyriak. [more inside]
posted by fish tick at 6:29 PM PST - 21 comments

The National Tea Party Federation has expelled a significant part of its membership, the Tea Party Express. It all started on July 13, when over 2000 NAACP delegates condemned bigoted elements in the Tea Party and asked that they be repudiated. (The bottom of this page has examples of recent racism.) A war of words ensued, with Tea Party spokespeople calling the NAACP racist and irrelevant. Mark Williams, spokesman for the Tea Party Express, was particularly harsh. On July 14, he posted an imaginary letter from "We Coloreds" to "Mr. Lincoln" on his blog. (Scroll down this link for full text and screen shot.) On July 16, the National Tea Party Federation decided to suspend the Tea Party Express, with expulsion to follow unless Williams was removed. [more inside]
posted by bearwife at 5:07 PM PST - 320 comments

The Lewis Chessmen are to tour Scotland. As part of the tour they will spend five months the islands where they were discovered. Digging the Dirt's review of the exhibition gives an idea of what you're missing, and the chess pieces are part of the BBC's History of the World in 100 objects. They're beautiful pieces from a beautiful place, but underneath this the chess pieces are at the centre of some political wrangling over object repatriation. In a more low-key version of the arguments over the Elgin marbles some are demanding that the British Museum should return the 82 pieces they own to Scotland. [more inside]
posted by Coobeastie at 4:17 PM PST - 28 comments

Space Project from photographer Vincent Fournier. "Playing on the stylised notion of a sci-fi utopia, Fournier’s otherworldly photographs of the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre, the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah and the Atacama Desert Observatories in Chile – alongside a series of surprisingly stringy trainee astronauts - offer an alternative view of the world, unseen by many and known by few."
posted by puny human at 4:05 PM PST - 11 comments

Raw video from a visit to an orangutan forest school in Borneo: part 1 2 3 4 [more inside]
posted by item at 3:50 PM PST - 9 comments

Kirtland's Warbler (Dendroica kirtlandii) is a small songbird that lives almost exclusively in the lower peninsula of Michigan. During the 1970's they were on the verge of extinction, partially due to the fact that they prefer young jack pine trees as a nesting place, and improved fire safety efforts had led to a lack of new growth in the forests. To address the lack of young jack pines, the Forest Service started a controlled burn on May 5, 1980. The fire quickly got out of control, and the resulting wildfire lead to the death of local firefighter Jim Swiderski, and the destruction of 64 homes. A recent Radiolab segment has again raised the question: how much is a species worth? [more inside]
posted by ivey at 3:11 PM PST - 17 comments


Streefers are street photographers. A photographic meme with a rich tradition. Danny Santos II is an excellent current example. He'll even give you tips if you want to try it yourself.
posted by DaddyNewt at 2:30 PM PST - 32 comments


New Maps of Science Fiction
The first question that naturally comes to mind about stories and authors is "How much do you like them?" Literary critics try to go far beyond this simple query, but it is the one that people ordinarily care most about, and for us it is the most important sociological question. Using modern techniques of analysis we can recover a tremendous amount of hidden information from statistics of people's likes and dislikes.
Analog Yearbook, 1977, pages 277-299. (via)
posted by P.o.B. at 2:02 PM PST - 45 comments

Bob Ducca isn't just the saddest divorced man in the world, he's also an addict of 12 Step recovery programs, a sufferer of ailments unrecognized by the medical community, a remote controlled motor boat enthusiast, and the holder of the world record for longest sigh. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:53 PM PST - 13 comments

The Agnostic Cartographer : How Google’s open-ended maps are embroiling the company in some of the world’s touchiest geopolitical disputes.
posted by desjardins at 1:26 PM PST - 23 comments


Gravelly-voiced character actor James Gammon has passed away of cancer at the age of 70. His career spanned more than 50 years in television, (with roles from "Gunsmoke" to "Grays Anatomy",) film and theater, but most will probably remember him as either the cantankerous manager of the Cleveland Indians in the 1989 comedy "Major League" or as Don Johnson's crotchety, retired longshoreman father on the television show Nash Bridges. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:17 PM PST - 23 comments

"They are the earliest painted portraits that have survived; they were painted whilst the Gospels of the New Testament were being written. Why then do they strike us today as being so immediate? Why does their individuality feel like our own? Why is their look more contemporary than any look to be found in the rest of the two millennia of traditional European art which followed them? The Fayum portraits touch us as if they had been painted last month." The Fayum mummy portraits were painted between the first and third centuries AD, in Roman Egypt, and preserved by the dry Egyptian climate. Wikimedia Commons. According to Wikipedia, 900 portraits are known to have survived. John Bavaro has been creating modern versions using the Brushes app on the iPhone. Via the Brushes Gallery on Flickr.
posted by russilwvong at 11:58 AM PST - 39 comments

The latest advert for Dyson's Air Multiplier fan is great. [SLYT] [more inside]
posted by alby at 11:53 AM PST - 88 comments

AirBnB is a web site that allows you to find or offer rooms, couches, apartments, houses, backyard tents, treehouses, castles, islands... for rent. Terrific for travellers on the cheap or who want unique experiences in lodging. There are some fantastic properties on here--many of them reasonably priced.
posted by dobbs at 11:32 AM PST - 20 comments

Broken Secrets is all about things you may not know but might find useful. These secrets are not things you shouldn’t know; more likely, they’re just interesting things you might not know yet. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:14 AM PST - 19 comments

In the halcyon days of 1962, an agency was charged with little more than creating "chirpy advertising messages" for the brands it represented. Today, the agency charged with digital strategy for Mad Men must contend with modern day issues: "Fan fiction. Brand hijacking. Copyright misuse. Sheer devotion." [PDF]. [more inside]
posted by DarlingBri at 11:03 AM PST - 12 comments

The rise of a new generation of Mormons [non-gated] - Many of the most successful US professionals are also members of the world's youngest major religion, which is being embraced by the elite in spite of its reputation. (via mr)
posted by kliuless at 9:41 AM PST - 189 comments

CSS3 Pie. Google's Frame requires users to install Frame in order to get the benefits of CSS3 support (among other things). CSS3 Progressive Internet Explorer aims to bring support for CSS3 in IE versions 6 through 8 via a server side script. It's early days for the extent of supported properties but there are more to come. If it's ultimately functional and useful long term remains to be seen.
posted by juiceCake at 8:42 AM PST - 21 comments


Performance artist and musician Laurie Anderson frightens milliennial when she appears on Letterman to perform Only An Expert with the very natural addition of a verse about the Oil Spill. (via the Awl, who also offers a nice introduction to Anderson)
posted by The Devil Tesla at 7:07 AM PST - 86 comments

"Facebook's popularity is based on the reality that human beings are social creatures. Staying connected with people we know is innate to us. But maintaining separate social groups that we don't want to clash is also innate." The Five Stages of Facebook Grief.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:43 AM PST - 87 comments


A detailed and fascinating glimpse inside the lives of two people spending decades living out of a bus on the West Coast, selling and trading bikes to get by. The Bicycle Bus has spent some time in the spotlight, but it is now parked. If you live in Eugene, OR, you should buy one of his bikes!
posted by seagull.apollo at 1:14 AM PST - 11 comments

Illegal immigration is not just a US problem.
Joe Sacco: Not in my country, A tale of unwanted immigrants.
The Big Picture (Joe Sacco previously 1; 2 ).
posted by adamvasco at 12:55 AM PST - 41 comments

The next morning I recalled a question the woman had asked me the night before: of the two ingredients of wabi-sabi, the Japanese aesthetic of impermanence, did I prefer wabi, the rusticity, simplicity, and irregularity of things in their created state, or sabi, the patina of age, the wear and tear that comes with constant use, the intimations of transience. I'm in the sabi camp: sabi as a concept is in all probability etymologically related to the verb sabiru, to rust, and for us lusters after rust, Yubari is sacred ground.
Spike Japan is the blog, or ongoing essay, of Richard Hendy, a long-time resident of Japan, about urban decay and population decline in Japan. The writing is digressive, knowledgable, opinionated, witty and engaging. The longest series is a travelogue of Hokkaido, in which the section on Yubari is the most stunning, though I also like the tour of Kuril Islands' dispute tourist attractions. There's much to read on Spike Japan, but let me point you towards the melancholic Requiem for a Railway, about Hendy's trip along an abandoned railway line.
posted by Kattullus at 12:18 AM PST - 20 comments

Inception (WARNING: SPOILERS FOLLOW) (trailer) (prequel comic) (cast interviews), the new film about shared dreaming by Christopher Nolan, has shocked audiences into gasps of delight and confusion. Two days in, the film, having impressed critics, is already inspiring elaborate debates about its complex and surreal plotline, with theories and heated discussions here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
posted by shivohum at 12:13 AM PST - 468 comments

July 17


A time lapse video of the immersing, beautiful world of the critically acclaimed video game Red Dead Redemption.
posted by Tenacious.Me.Tokyo at 10:07 PM PST - 60 comments

Every person is assigned a role at the start of the game. You are randomly sided with either the village, the mafia, or a third party. During the night, the mafia secretly meet and discuss to decide who they want to kill, while other power roles decide what to do. During the day, the village players must figure out who is not sided with the village and get rid of them. [more inside]
posted by GooseOnTheLoose at 8:30 PM PST - 38 comments

In 1992, on a rainy night in Palm Springs, a drunk driver took the life of Jilly Rizzo, long-time pal of Frank Sinatra. Jeffrey Perotte (then 28) was an alcoholic "who had the papers for court-ordered alcohol rehabilitation sitting in the glove box of his car". He ran from the scene as Rizzo burned to death, and then attempted to convince officers that it was not him who had been driving, but his girlfriend. Sentenced to life, Perotte (website) 'turned his life around' in prison, earning three degrees along the way. He has come up for parole four times, with "a file full of testimonials from prison guards, counselors and even, twice, the judge who sentenced him," but has been denied each time. "What we've been dealing with all along," [his father-in-law] said, "has been the hidden hand of the Sinatras."
posted by woodblock100 at 7:30 PM PST - 104 comments

"Knock Out Eileen," a rather cool mash-up by Thriftshop XL of "Come On Eileen" (Dexy's Midnight Runners) and "Mama Said Knock You Out" (LL Cool J). (slyt)
posted by WCityMike at 7:22 PM PST - 47 comments



Nick At Nite: The Promos (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by griphus at 5:36 PM PST - 25 comments

Bookshelf Porn A collection of all the best bookshelf photos for people who love bookshelves.
posted by Fizz at 2:15 PM PST - 65 comments


[NSFW] High Contrast Cock: High resolution photos of my cock and foreskin. (via) [more inside]
posted by andoatnp at 1:54 PM PST - 210 comments

"By 'grawlixes', I mean icons representing unprintable words, occurring within speech balloons belonging to characters who are agitated." – Gwillim Law. Via Ben Zimmer's post at Language Log on Obscenicons a century ago.
posted by Stan Carey at 1:12 PM PST - 18 comments

Zenyata may be the greatest mare ever. Even if your not normally into race horses, it's worth seeing this one, there may not be another like her. Laura Hillenbrand, who wrote Seabiscuit, explains why (NPR 6min). [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 12:18 PM PST - 44 comments

War of the words - Science fiction was once driven by a faith in human ability to change the world. These days, the genre seeks to expose the illusions of everyday life. cf. near-future science fiction [1,2] & radical presentism [3] (via mr)
posted by kliuless at 9:33 AM PST - 56 comments

Fruit MRIs. Do not click this link if you are intoxicated. [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia at 7:26 AM PST - 78 comments

Bruce Nussbaum kicked off a minor hubbub in designa circles this week with his provocative article "Is Humanitarian Design the new Imperialism?" which led to this response by Frogdesign's Robert Fabricant "In Defense of Design Imperialism" and WorldChanging's Alex Steffen's "The Problem with Design: Imperialism or thinking too small?" and finally a whole slew of blog posts, opinions and commentary artfully collated here by the editors of Design Observer. But the question still remains unanswered...
posted by infini at 5:00 AM PST - 85 comments

Land and Freedom, in its entirety. It's a film about a young English Communist who goes to fight the fascists amidst the Spanish Revolution as a member of the POUM militia. He sees both the reality of a people's revolution and the consequences of Stalinism. It's directed by Ken Loach, who also directed Bread and Roses and The Wind that Shakes the Barley. Subtitles will help a lot if you don't speak Spanish.
posted by cthuljew at 1:26 AM PST - 29 comments

July 16

Just over three weeks after being sworn in, Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard visited the Governor-General this morning and called a federal election for the 21st of August. [more inside]
posted by the duck by the oboe at 11:09 PM PST - 119 comments

Boston has two Upper Crusts. One plays rock & roll music (think AC/DC [NSFW] meets French nobility). The other makes pizza and doesn't like overtime.
posted by ifandonlyif at 10:25 PM PST - 18 comments

La Guerre Infernale was a serialized novel for children, written by Pierre Giffard and lavishly illustrated by Albert Robida. It told the tale of the second world war, with battles between Britain and Germany, and between the United States and Japan. Sadly, it's been out of print for over 100 years, because it was written in 1908. [more inside]
posted by luvcraft at 9:24 PM PST - 30 comments

Hark a Vagrant revolutionizes Bastille Day, for your pleasure. Please to bring your own pikes, guillotines.
posted by kidelo at 7:34 PM PST - 44 comments

Cinema's Most Pivotal Gay Sex Scenes from Salon.com. (NSFW, of course) [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 5:04 PM PST - 94 comments

Possibly the best game since Calvinball, Dwile Thonking (var. Dwyle Flunking, Dwile Flonking), consists of two teams of eight or more, and a lot of beer. The World Championships were played May 29th at the Dog Inn in Norfolk, with the the Pippin Flonkers of Coventry emerging victorious. Can't make it across the pond for a match? Play online!
posted by timsteil at 4:08 PM PST - 8 comments

Nine Planets Without Intelligent Life, a philosophically meandering webcomic, has been updated after a long hiatus. Previously [more inside]
posted by dubusadus at 3:32 PM PST - 14 comments

The United States was engaged in the largest two-front war of its, or any nation's history. Though victory was not yet certain, there were discussions on a multi-national level regarding the future peace, and on the President of the United States was looking to the post-war prospects for the nation. With that in mind, the annual address of the President to Congress and the nation was summed up in one word: Security. "And that means not only physical security which provides safety from attacks by aggressors. It means also economic security, social security, moral security -- in a family of nations." This was Franklin D. Roosevelt's third-to-last Fireside Chat, presented on Tuesday, January 11, 1944, which included what he proposed to be the Second Bill of Rights. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:06 PM PST - 67 comments

The recent bombing of a a Shi’ite mosque in SE Iran by the Sunni Muslim rebel group Jundullah raises again the question of whether the US is in bed with the enemy. The Groups leader Abdolmalek Rigi was recently executed by the Iranians.
In 2007 ABC News reported on The Secret War Against Iran.
"Some former CIA officers say the arrangement is reminiscent of how the U.S. government used proxy armies, funded by other countries including Saudi Arabia, to destabilize the government of Nicaragua in the 1980s”.
posted by adamvasco at 2:58 PM PST - 15 comments

Nick Tahou Hots in Rochester, NY is famous for being the home of the Garbage Plate. According to Health magazine the Garbage Plate is New York State's Fattiest food, with potentially 200 grams of fat.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:08 PM PST - 76 comments

Awkward Stock Photos
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 1:49 PM PST - 57 comments

God of War: The Movie This year's indie blockbuster. [SLYT]
posted by zabuni at 1:17 PM PST - 23 comments

BP admits lobbying to get convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdel Basset al-Megrahi released in order to protect a $900,000,000 deal to drill off the coast of Libya. In the future, we'll probably be hearing a lot more about the controversy over BP's admitted role (acknowledged long ago by officials in the UK) in negotiating for al-Megrahi's release on compassionate grounds that have since been called into question (as previously discussed here). At the time of al-Megrahi's release by a Scottish Judge, US officials were sharply critical of the decision to release al-Megrahi. Investigations into the arrangement are currently underway in the US congress.
posted by saulgoodman at 1:08 PM PST - 80 comments


Input: Bananas. Output: Ice cream! [more inside]
posted by kmz at 12:56 PM PST - 82 comments

cooking.stackexchange.com is the first non computer based Q&A site in the ever expanding stackexchange universe. If you want to know how to chop onions without crying, find out what a roux is or find the best meat replacements for vegetarians, then this may be worth a look-see.
posted by seanyboy at 12:51 PM PST - 26 comments

A preview of SIGGRAPH 2010, which is already producing the usual spate of demonstration videos, some fascinating, some slightly disturbing. [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 12:01 PM PST - 13 comments

The immodestly named Versailles1 in Florida is possibly the largest home in America. At 90,000 sqft it is nearly twice the size of the White House and includes 23 bathrooms, a 10 car garage and 10 Segways to get around. The WSJ reports on Touring the (Almost) Largest Home in America. Of course the owners ran out of money and now the hulking shell of Versailles, sitting precariously for the ages a few feet above sea level, is for sale (click through for virtual tour).
posted by stbalbach at 11:58 AM PST - 76 comments

Hanson's (catchy, if you ask me) video "Thinking 'Bout Something" is an homage to Ray Charles's great performance of "Shake a Tailfeather" in The Blues Brothers. As an added bonus, look closely at the tambourine player; it's our favorite, Weird Al. [more inside]
posted by Sweetie Darling at 11:39 AM PST - 34 comments

REX is a "bionic" motorized exoskeleton that could make wheelchairs obsolete. Videos: 1, 2. Made in New Zealand by two British inventors, REX will be available internationally in the middle of 2011. Reported Retail Cost: (US) $150,000
posted by zarq at 11:31 AM PST - 30 comments

In 2060, "The Guy Who Worked For Money" is unusual. [more inside]
posted by Pronoiac at 11:04 AM PST - 28 comments

"Millions" Of Home Routers Vulnerable to a Web Hack At the upcoming Black Hat Conference, to be held on July 29th in Las Vegas this year, a security researcher and ethical hacker named Craig Heffner will reveal a software tool to exploit a large-scale vulnerability in most home routers that will give users outside of the network access to the device. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 10:53 AM PST - 40 comments

There is very little intrinsic value in Coco Rocha's physique that would set her apart from any number of other similarly-built teens. 'When dealing with symbolic goods like “beauty” and “fashionability,” we would be hard pressed to identify objective measures of worth inherent in the good itself.' 'The social world of fashion markets reveals how market actors think collectively to make decisions in the face of uncertainty. And this social side of markets, it turns out, is key to understanding how investors could trade securities backed with “toxic” subprime mortgage assets leading us into the 2009 financial crisis.' 'In 2002, a tall and skinny 14-year old girl competed in a dance contest in Vancouver, Canada. There she encountered a modeling agent, who asked her to consider going out for modeling jobs. Today, the 22-year-old Coco Rocha is celebrated as a “supermodel”'. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 9:42 AM PST - 60 comments

Society teaches 'Don’t get raped' rather than 'Don’t rape' "When Stevens reads articles about drunk driving, the police are quoted telling people to stop drinking and driving. But when she reads articles about sexual assault, there is no warning telling would-be attackers not to rape. Instead, the authorities tell potential victims to take precautions." [more inside]
posted by hepta at 9:06 AM PST - 354 comments

Did the Vatican just equate ordaining women with molesting children? Sure sounds like it to a handful of women priests. The church is backpedaling a bit today, but not very hard.
posted by willpie at 7:57 AM PST - 129 comments

Who gets to make money off WordPress? Dust-up brewing in the world of WordPress as theme author Chris Pearson and WordPress head honcho Matt Mullenweg battle out the question: Is a theme a 'derivative work'? [more inside]
posted by ao4047 at 7:28 AM PST - 147 comments

"Andrew Doughty [...] brah you have BLOOD on your hands. No one ever even went to Queens Bath before these books were released, and now over 10 people have died there." The Strange Case of Queen's Bath, Kauai. [more inside]
posted by liet at 7:11 AM PST - 29 comments

Scientists in Edinburgh have determined that the chicken came before the egg. [more inside]
posted by educatedslacker at 7:00 AM PST - 38 comments

Flash Friday: Mardek 3 is an rpg similar in style and length to the Final Fantasy or Earthbound games from the SNES days. But that's not all! [more inside]
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:58 AM PST - 11 comments

India unveils new rupee symbol. The new symbol. Measures are already afoot to have the rupee sign declared a computer standard, meaning it could join currencies such as the pound, dollar, euro and yen on keyboards within two years. And in case you wondered, Where do currency symbols come from?
posted by Fizz at 6:45 AM PST - 43 comments

Dolphin escapes from SeaWorld tank in Japan , but is caught a few moments later. (SLYT)
posted by swift at 6:38 AM PST - 54 comments

Although the Stupak amendment was defeated, women in the new high risk pools will be denied coverage for abortion. The "clarification" from the administration comes in the wake of a scuffle over Pennsylvania's plan to provide abortion coverage. Hopefully, building criticism will have an effect.
posted by stoneweaver at 6:30 AM PST - 24 comments

Raoul Moat left prison, shot several people and hid from the police for a week before shooting himself. Not long after, the Facebook group 'RIP Raoul Moat You Legend' was set up to predictable outrage and condemnation from the UK Prime Minister (and then condemnation of his reaction.) An astounding radio interview with said group's founder. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 3:40 AM PST - 136 comments

July 15

iPhone 4's reception woes, wherein bridging the area where the metal bands meet (affectionately dubbed "the spot") results in a dramatic loss in signal strength, have been widely covered in the media over the past few weeks. Apple acknowledged the concerns publicly with a letter to customers where they concluded that the issue was not with the phone, but rather that they were being too generous in the way the software communicated signal quality as bars. After an update to iOS, the bars are in fact different but the problems persist. Most recently, Consumer Reports stated it was unable to recommend iPhone 4 because of the significant design flaw, despite listing it as the highest rated overall smartphone they've tested to date. The latest wrinkle in the story has been an open letter to Steve Jobs from Chuck Schumer, yes -- United States Senator from New York Chuck Schumer, in which he questions the adequacy and transparency of Apple's response to customer concerns. Apple will be holding a press conference at 10AM tomorrow in San Francisco to address the matter. [more inside]
posted by cgomez at 11:45 PM PST - 465 comments

The writer has—has been stricken with the—the passion and beauty of life, the world, and a—a demon-driven need to—to express that, to put it down on paper or cut it into marble or into music, and with that foreknowledge that he has only a limited time to do it, he may be dead tomorrow—he's got to do it all while he can still breathe, and it's a—a desire, a need, to put the whole history of the human heart into any and every word, every paragraph that he writes, and the obscurity comes from a belief which I hold, that—that there is no such thing as "was."
In the late 1950s William Faulkner was writer-in-residence at the University of Virginia. Extensive recordings of readings, reflections, and classes are now online. NPR summarizes. [more inside]
posted by jjray at 9:34 PM PST - 15 comments

(Previously) Feel like running away? Do you like museums? Are you interested in science and writing? The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago is interested in you. As a roommate. For a month. 24/7. Sleep in the Silver Streak! Get your geek on in the Smart Home! Watch movies in your Omnimax theater! Surf the web in Networld! Oh, yeah. And earn $10,000 for your time. So you can blow it all in the gift shop :)
posted by jeanmari at 8:02 PM PST - 63 comments

ExtensionFM is a Chrome extension that picks up links to mp3s as you browse the web and adds them to a media library.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 7:34 PM PST - 14 comments


Forget the Ewings, the Carringtons, or the Channings and Giobertis, France is in the grip of the real-life soap opera of the Bettencourts, heiresses to the L'Oréal cosmetics empire, featuring a suave gigolo, a scheming wealth manager, a paradise island, feuding lawyers, embarrassed politicians, squabbling magistrates, New Media, another major multinational, and even a butler with a tape recorder... [more inside]
posted by Skeptic at 4:34 PM PST - 25 comments


His terrors are eternal, he's a master of cosmic horror, and now he can also liven up a dull trip to the North East: 6 Boring New England Destinations Made Awesome by H.P. Lovecraft
posted by Artw at 3:05 PM PST - 60 comments

Britain Investigates Torture: Classified documents reveal UK's role in abuse of its own citizens.
So as bad as this makes the Brits look, it implicates the US far more : Torture and Truth “Did the UK order up torture?” or “Did the UK knowingly use information gathered using torture?”
Will the Bush-Cheney Check Ever Be Paid? Maybe.
posted by adamvasco at 2:34 PM PST - 29 comments


Good news, everyone! Billy West on Fresh Air discussing the various voices he has created for Futurama, Ren & Stimpy, and many others.
posted by waraw at 2:07 PM PST - 35 comments


The Compendium of Physical Activities (PDF) estimates your energy expenditure during common activities. [more inside]
posted by domnit at 12:56 PM PST - 37 comments

The Revolving Internet (music autoplays)
posted by andoatnp at 12:13 PM PST - 26 comments

The Korean DMZ (pdf) / PLZ has been a hot tourist attraction for years, featuring must-see sites like the Third Infiltration Tunnel, Dora Observatory, the Dora Mountain Train Station, the Freedom Bridge and the Imjingak Tourist Site, complete with its statue of Harry Truman. And now, South Korea's border with North Korea -- the most heavily militarized border on Earth, -- will be patrolled by killer robots. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:25 AM PST - 50 comments

The New Abortion Providers: an in-depth look at the re-institutionalization of abortion training in U.S. teaching hospitals, from the New York Times Magazine.
posted by killdevil at 11:14 AM PST - 28 comments

Torosaurus Ain't. [more inside]
posted by Wulfgar! at 10:37 AM PST - 33 comments


Want to fire a teacher in the LA Unified School District? Be prepared to spend several years and hundreds of thousands of dollars to do so. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 9:30 AM PST - 139 comments

Next weekend, thousands of runners will take to the streets of San Francisco to run the SF Marathon, on a course with hills that skate a 300 ft. elevation about six times over 26.2 miles. However, the non-corporately sponsored marathon attracts few than a third of the runners who tackle New York City and Chicago. While the organizers are trying to re-brand the race, offering two different half marathon courses, they have shied away from making the course any easier.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:06 AM PST - 26 comments

For the first time, research shows that American creativity is declining. What went wrong? Can we fix it? 'Nobody would argue that Torrance’s tasks, which have become the gold standard in creativity assessment, measure creativity perfectly. What’s shocking is how incredibly well Torrance’s creativity index predicted those kids’ creative accomplishments as adults. Those who came up with more good ideas on Torrance’s tasks grew up to be entrepreneurs, inventors, college presidents, authors, doctors, diplomats, and software developers. Jonathan Plucker of Indiana University recently reanalyzed Torrance’s data. The correlation to lifetime creative accomplishment was more than three times stronger for childhood creativity than childhood IQ.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 9:02 AM PST - 88 comments

Argentina Approves Gay Marriage. With a 33-27 vote in the Senate, Argentina has become the first Latin American country to legalize gay marriage. (Mexico City legalized it in 2009.) Reactions: 1 2 3 [more inside]
posted by kmz at 8:34 AM PST - 43 comments


Alarming digital drugs get Oklahoma teens high! "I heard it was like some weird demons and stuff through an iPod and he was like freaking out," said Mustang High School student Meghan Edwards. Psychology Today examines the analog origins, "In 1839, Heinrich Wilhelm Dove discovered that two constant tones, played at slightly different frequencies in each ear, cause the listener to perceive the sound of a fast-paced beat. Calling this phenomenon "binaural beats," Dove helped launch two centuries of legitimate research and, as is almost always followed by exciting empirical study, money-grabbing pseudoscience." Parent Kelly Johnson does not approve, "Well it's just scary, definitely scary. Just one more thing to look out for."
posted by geoff. at 8:08 AM PST - 100 comments

Music video for Tim Halperin's song "She Runs" - one continuous shot. Cute with a homemade feel. I can't believe people have the energy to make things like this in the Texas heat!
posted by sparky at 7:19 AM PST - 14 comments

Ferris Club (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by ShawnString at 7:12 AM PST - 85 comments


"These are sample layouts from a fullsize reproduction of the entire 2007 IKEA catalogue, leaving only color and structure. With an estimated 175 million copies distributed in 2006, the IKEA catalogue is thought to have surpassed the Bible as the most published print-work in the world." [more inside]
posted by Miko at 6:22 AM PST - 62 comments

Moai silhouetted by a solar eclipse. That is all.
posted by cog_nate at 6:16 AM PST - 31 comments

40 Things You Need to Know About the Next 40 Years For it's 40th anniversary issue, Smithsonian magazine asks experts in various fields for insights into our future and compiles a list of 40 predictions about the future of science, nature, the arts and technology. The feature essay is by President Obama, in which he explains why he's optimistic about America's future. (VIA) [more inside]
posted by mondaygreens at 6:01 AM PST - 48 comments

Lake Kaindy is a lake in Kazakhstan that was created after a huge landslide. A portion of the surrounding forest was submerged, and has since become regionally famous for its underwater trees. The coolest pictures, by far, are from the guys who went ice diving in the middle of winter.
posted by shiu mai baby at 4:12 AM PST - 18 comments

July 14

The Babinda Boulders is a beautiful and exciting place in far-northern Queensland, Australia. It also conceals the Devil's Pool, which is traditionally believed to be haunted by a young Aboriginal girl calling for her lost lover. At least sixteen young men have drowned there since 1959. [more inside]
posted by Joe in Australia at 11:12 PM PST - 18 comments

Constantly productive and frequently amusing theater group Improv Everywhere takes on an iconic Star Wars scene in a New York subway car. [more inside]
posted by lholladay at 9:57 PM PST - 83 comments



Singer/Songwriter Jewel, disguised as a mild-mannered businesswoman, goes undercover as a karaoke singer.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:37 PM PST - 88 comments


Building iPhone Apps with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript
Jonathan Stark's book is online in its entirety, with a Creative Commons license. Kind of cool.
posted by mecran01 at 6:22 PM PST - 65 comments

Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:18 PM PST - 238 comments

Magma Energy Corp. sets to acquire HS Orka (shareholders) for about 40 canadian millions. HS Okra owns the rights to most of Iceland's natural ressources for the next 65 years. Renewable. Some MP's consider suing the Icelandic government. Björk asks some questions(PDF).
posted by CitoyenK at 3:11 PM PST - 57 comments

Worlds collide on reddit! A redditor boasts about a party he once threw at his grandparent's house years ago, only to be busted in the same thread by his own grandfather. Watch his jaw drop in this thread as he slowly discovers that his grandfather is a beloved member of the community and even has his own Facebook group with more than 500 fans. And go read Grandpa Wiggly's website, it's great!
posted by PercussivePaul at 3:05 PM PST - 97 comments

How to listen to Bob Dylan, a guide. [more inside]
posted by gman at 3:01 PM PST - 171 comments

The Lizard, The Catacombs, and the Clock Metafilter's own™ Marquis did some investigating of a Parisian secret society, known variously as UX, Untergunther or la Mexicaine de la Perforation (previously 1,2) The resulting article has been picked up by the Literary Journal BRICK and is available in full on their website. [via mefi projects]
posted by Ufez Jones at 2:57 PM PST - 17 comments

Possibly having tired of reviewing blockbusters such as Avatar, Phantom Menace, and Attack of the Clones (previously: 1, 2, 3, respectively), RedLetterMedia has taken a different approach and posted a video review of John Hughes' 1994 family comedy, Baby's Day Out.
Then, in a visual you might find more creepy than anything you've seen in The Shining, the baby's little hand reaches down and starts grabbing at his cock. He actually squeezes his dick over and over again with the creepy little baby hand.
Not to be missed are Plinkett's other reviews, including several Star Trek films. RedLetterMedia also dabbles in comedic shorts.
posted by Christ, what an asshole at 1:40 PM PST - 31 comments

So it's the middle of July and you say you haven't found your perfect summer jam yet? Does Ga Ga make you gag? Are you maxed-out on MIA? Then what you need is the petite princess of Swedish electra-pop, Robyn, doing Fembot. So hot. Still need convincing? Then would you believe Robyn with Staygold, and a live version of Backseat.
posted by puny human at 1:22 PM PST - 53 comments

The Alcatraz Swim-o-Meter calculates the time and path of your watery escape from Alcatraz, designed and built by San Francisco Dolphin Club member Kent Myers.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 1:00 PM PST - 13 comments

Kristin Hersh is well-known to many as a founder of legendary 80s indy/alt band Throwing Muses, as well as for her own successful solo albums and alt-punk 3-piece band 50 Foot Wave, is having a good 2010. A new solo album, Crooked, is due out later this year -- a follow-up to the collection Speedbath, which was released on the web under a Creative Commons license, and demos for a forthcoming new Throwing Muses collection have been appearing on the band's CASH page (previously); Crooked has also appeared in the UK in book format through HarperCollins' Friday Project imprint. A nice additional tidbit for fans is the just-released live collection, Cats and Mice. As if all that wasn't enough, stories that Kristin came up with for her sons while they accompanied her on tour over the years inspired a children's book, Toby Snax, published in 2007, and Hersh will be publishing a memoir, Rat Girl (Paradoxical Undressing, in the UK edition) detailing her early days with Throwing Muses -- a time in which she struggled with mental illness and figured out what it meant to front a touring rock band while pregnant (excerpts of Rat Girl arrived in periodic email installments to Hersh's subscription supporters, whose support has enabled much of Hersh's current productivity). Hersh has been taking advantage of various social media as well: you can follow her doing in the Throwingmusic fan forums, Facebook, or via her often-curious Twitter feed.
posted by aught at 12:40 PM PST - 30 comments


Choice of Broadsides is a choose-your-own-adventure game set in an alternate 19th Century world that is much like our own, where Albion and Gaul fight for naval supremacy. You can choose to be a gentleman in a standard patriarchal society, or a gentlewoman in a matriarchal one. Later on in the game you can choose your sexual orientation. Originally there were no options for a same-sex relationship, but after demands from players, it was added in. Spoilers below the cut. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus at 12:21 PM PST - 42 comments


Paedomorphic flightlessness and taxonomic affinities of an enormous Recent bird is a talk on the anatomy and evolutionary history of a certain flightless bird indigenous to New York City.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 11:09 AM PST - 16 comments

The thrills of drilling, the hazards and rewards as you bring in your own . . . Offshore Oil Strike. "An exciting board game for all the family." Lovingly brought to you by BP. //BLDGBLOG
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 10:57 AM PST - 15 comments

In 1984 Philip Morris created the Marlboro Adventure team to promote their flagship cigarette. DOC (Doctors Ought to Car), an international organization of health professionals, was founded to counteract the promotion of tobacco advertising. In 1993 as an effort to undermine the Marlboro Adventure Team US debut the DOC repainted a VW van as the Barfmobile, hired a handsome comedian [pdf] as Barf Man, printed thousands of Barfboro Barf Bags (imprinted with the words "DOES CIGARETTE ADVERTISING MAKE YOU SICK? US TOO!"), and created the Barfboro Barfing Team. [more inside]
posted by wcfields at 10:44 AM PST - 40 comments

Last week, Gizmodo asked their readers to submit wallpaper-sized pictures of bugs. Today, 294 colorful images of creepy crawlies were posted to galleries on their site: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 (bandwidth alert: those pages are very picture-heavy) and also to Flickr, where high-resolution versions can be downloaded. This project is part of their weekly "Shooting Challenge". Each week's results can be seen in individual sets on their Flickr account.
posted by zarq at 10:13 AM PST - 15 comments

Yesterday was the birthday of Dr. John Dee (1527-1609) (wiki). This extraordinary and brilliant man was a mathematician, astrologer, astronomer, navigator, map maker, alchemist, hermetic philosopher, and adviser in matters practical and arcane to Queen Elizabeth 1st. History has sometimes been unkind to him because he embraced science and mysticism together (previously), believing both to be facets of the same universal thing. His unfortunate experiments in conjuring angels with the alchemist Edward Kelley are probably to blame. Kelley asserted that the angel Uriel had instructed him to swap or share wives with Dr. Dee. This, unsurprisingly, led to the end of their association. 16th century celestial wife-swapping was going too far. However, Dr. Dee was a true Renaissance man and a gifted scholar. You can visit his black obsidian magic Aztec mirror at the British Museum.
posted by infini at 10:03 AM PST - 50 comments

During the past 4 days, the Cockrell Butterfly Center at the Houston Museum of Natural Science has stayed open 24 hours to accommodate the record crowds filing into the museum at all hours. Why? A rare Amorphophallus titanium, aka “Corpse Flower,” named Lois is finally about to bloom. Now, Lois is not your average, run-of-the-mill stinky plant. Only 28 Corpse Flowers have bloomed in the US, so Lois has become a local celebrity with her own blog, Flickr feed, live webcam and cupcakes. She even has her own playlist, with songs such as “That Smell” by Lynyrd Skynrd, “I’m Comin’ Out” by Diana Ross and the classic “Smelly Cat” by Phoebe from Friends. And like any trendy Corpse Flower, Lois also has her own Twitter account. She's also a bit of a diva. Yet despite predictions, Lois still hasn't bloomed as of Wednesday morning. In response, Lois makes excuses, bad jokes, complaints and snarky comments.
posted by yeoja at 9:47 AM PST - 30 comments

American Dream, American Nightmare. The 70s looks back at itself. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 9:45 AM PST - 49 comments

I Write Like... Check what famous writer you write like with this statistical analysis tool, which analyzes your word choice and writing style and compares them to those of famous writers.
posted by swift at 7:51 AM PST - 376 comments

The RIAA paid Holmes Roberts & Owen $9,364,901 in 2008, Jenner & Block more than $7,000,000, and Cravath Swain & Moore $1.25 million, to pursue its "copyright infringement" claims, in order to recover a mere $391,000. ... for a 3 year period, they spent around $64,000,000 in legal and investigative expenses to recover around $1,361,000. (via Slashdot)
posted by Joe Beese at 7:28 AM PST - 63 comments

Retro Recipe Attempts : Sit back with your Hot Dr. Pepper, munch on a bit of Pie Plate Salad, and start cooking! Brought to you by the fine folks at Mental Hygiene.
posted by gwint at 7:14 AM PST - 29 comments

A stroke happens when blood flow is blocked to a part of the brain. The effects can be devastating. It turns out we might be able to prevent the damage with a simple tickle of the whiskers. [more inside]
posted by nomisxid at 6:58 AM PST - 36 comments

Saint Taffarel who is in goal
Like a guardian angel
Sweet like honey
Defending our goal, our hope, our happiness.
- Carlos Drummond
A literary roundup of the mysterious keeper, from Nabokov to Camus to Dante. A little more football for those of us getting the twitches.
posted by Hiker at 6:44 AM PST - 6 comments

Happy Bastille Day y'all! (previously) Why not celebrate with a few stirring renditions of France's first national anthem? You can get your La Marseillaise traditional, By Edith Piaf, by Django Reinheart and Stephane Grappelli, in a classic movie, in 1907, by a F1 Renault, all punked out, or as a Reggae (a performance of which lead to bomb threats, causing Serge to take the stage and sing it alone.)
posted by The Whelk at 6:26 AM PST - 33 comments

July 13

Dynasty Trusts - America Builds an Aristocracy.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 11:39 PM PST - 74 comments

The European Space Agency's Rosetta craft has returned stunning images of the asteroid 21 Lutetia, including this one which couples Lutetia with a member of our planetary family. [more inside]
posted by IvoShandor at 10:42 PM PST - 21 comments

Notice something missing in Prospect Park in Brooklyn? All the geese have been rounded up and killed in the name of air traffic safety.
posted by hippybear at 9:52 PM PST - 135 comments

In an effort to explore the hierarchy and commonalities between maids and those who employ them, Justine Graham and Ruby Rumié created a photo exhibit entitled Lugar Común (Common Place) (pdf, text in spanish) of fifty female Latin-American employer-employee dyads. All women wear white shirts and no accessories. They sit in the same poses. There is no explicit indication of who works for whom. (via) [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 9:16 PM PST - 14 comments

The Oil Spill Commission held its first hearing on the BP Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico Monday at the New Orleans Hilton. During the public comment portion, local residents came forward to tell their own stories of loss and fear and frustration over the oil spill and the moratorium. When words failed, music prevailed.
posted by nola at 8:53 PM PST - 12 comments

The Invasion of Grenada (also known as Operation Urgent Fury) took place on October 25, 1983. Despite its reputation for only being "like 12 hours long," it played an important part in the history of the Cold War, the Reagan Administration, and U.S. military policy. Some have compared the way it was handled to the 2003 Invasion of Iraq.
posted by Man Bites Dog at 7:42 PM PST - 35 comments

David Collier has discovered a pleasant trick (requiring Firefox and AdBlock Plus) that brings the mighty Facebook Connect empire to its knees.
posted by WCityMike at 7:06 PM PST - 97 comments

Mike Walters is at it again with an amazing tape-based drum machine. Full details are to be found on his website. [previously]
posted by mhjb at 7:00 PM PST - 11 comments

Fewdio makes short horror movies. Two to ten minutes apiece. Here's a few to get you started. The Shiny Button.
The Mockingbird.
Creep.
Cleansed (gory).
posted by boo_radley at 5:20 PM PST - 19 comments



Digg co-founder and CEO Kevin Rose has been sick with left lower lobe pneumonia since July 4. Today he received a get-well message from an unlikely person: the Old Spice Man. [more inside]
posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 1:58 PM PST - 147 comments

Douglas Coupland designs a clothing line for Roots, the Canadian “outdoorsy” retailer whose heyday, like Coupland’s, may well have passed. (Garish official splash screen.) Two points of MeFi interest: The motherboard pattern (at “Canada & International” store; at USA store; also at pop-up stores like Vancouver’s) and Coupland’s unexplicated claim that “[t]he sexiest thing about Canada is that we have a future.”
posted by joeclark at 1:49 PM PST - 60 comments

"Eighty-seven percent of all trips are made by personal vehicle and 99 percent of those trips arrive at a free parking space." But that free parking comes at a high cost according to Donald Shoup's research. He advocates for charging the right price for on-street parking and for removing off-street parking requirements. Shoup's ideas are coming to the streets in San Francisco's new demand-responsive parking system. Loyal Shoupistas work to spread and implement his ideas.
posted by parudox at 12:36 PM PST - 192 comments


Bob Sheppard, the voice of Yankee Stadium, died Monday. Only two months shy of his 100th birthday, Sheppard was known for his concise speaking style as the public-address announcer for the Yankees. He held that position from 1951 to 2007, announcing lineups containing baseball greats like DiMaggio and Mantle up to today's players, like Derek Jeter, who requested that Sheppard's voice be the only voice to announce his name in Yankee Stadium. His longetivity and distinct announcing voice made him popular with many generations of Yankee fans. [more inside]
posted by rachaelfaith at 12:18 PM PST - 8 comments

With capitalism in crisis, can it be sustained or is it altogether outdated? As Umair Haque asks though, perhaps a better question is: "are organizations and markets making decisions that help make people, communities, and society better off in the long run, by allocating their scarce resources to the most productive uses?" [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 12:12 PM PST - 15 comments

The paradox of good parents with toxic children. 'We marvel at the resilient child who survives the most toxic parents and home environment and goes on to a life of success. Yet the converse — the notion that some children might be the bad seeds of more or less decent parents — is hard to take.' 'For better or worse, parents have limited power to influence their children. That is why they should not be so fast to take all the blame — or credit — for everything that their children become.' But this is not the only family dynamic that is becoming noted. 'Therapists for years have listened to patients blame parents for their problems. Now there is growing interest in the other side of the story: What about the suffering of parents who are estranged from their adult children?'
posted by VikingSword at 12:04 PM PST - 150 comments

In 1974, a pair of wargame enthusiasts from Lake Geneva, Wisconsin transformed the nascent hobby gaming world by publishing three little brown booklets. Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson's Dungeons & Dragons has become an important part of the lives of generations of young gamers. Along the way, D&D went through numerous editions, each with increasingly complex rules. [more inside]
posted by paulg at 11:11 AM PST - 157 comments

Hunter S. Thompson vs. a Hell's Angel. On a talk show. (SLYT). The audience reactions are sort of horrifying.
posted by Bookhouse at 10:32 AM PST - 89 comments

Tuna’s End Adapted from the book "Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food" for the New York Times. A pretty bleak look at the state of world wide tuna fishing.
posted by chunking express at 10:01 AM PST - 55 comments


On June 6th, Shahram Amiri - an Iranian nuclear scientist -- appeared on a YouTube video claiming he was abducted by US and Saudi authorities in Medina, drugged and flown to the US. On June 7th, a second video on Youtube appeared where he, or someone claiming to be him, said he was fine, studying in the US. (The U.S. government has no official comment but cited him as a source on Iran's nuclear program.) A 3rd video backed the first. Now Pakistan says Amiri is in hiding in its Washington embassy's Iranian interests section under asylum and making arrangements to get back to Iran. How he got there, and why, is a mystery. [more inside]
posted by msalt at 9:37 AM PST - 25 comments

"Art is a legalized form of insanity, and I do it very well."
Amarillo, Texas is home to the Cadillac Ranch, artist & sculptor Lightnin’ McDuff’s “Ozymandius,” the Amarillo Ramp and the “Dynamite Museum” project, which gave residents the opportunity to order fake, fun road signs and place them on their properties.  Over 5000 signs (Someone did a study!) have been erected throughout town.  But what do all of these projects have in common? They’re all elaborate art works commissioned by Stanley Marsh 3rd, eccentric millionaire, philanthropist and inveterate prankster. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:48 AM PST - 28 comments

URL shortening service for twitter. "Senior citizens are the fastest-growing user group for twitter probably. And they don't have time to decipher most URL shorteners. The average senior citizen probably assumes 'bit.ly' is the URL for a Lithuanian overbite clinic; 'tr.im' looks like the homepage of an Islamic transportation consultancy. On the other hand, 'urlshorteningservicefortwitter.com' lays it all out on the table!" [more inside]
posted by eccnineten at 8:47 AM PST - 59 comments

Jack Parow is a South African rapper known for the oversized bill on the hat he wears, unlike Die Antwoord (Previously) he raps in Afrikaans almost exclusively. [more inside]
posted by schyler523 at 8:25 AM PST - 32 comments

Terrence Nowicki, Jr. is different than most political comic writers. Many political comics today are more about kneejerk satire as part of a zeitgeist than exposing politicians and the tragicomic predicaments of the United States. Yet, the format is capable of so much more. Terrence Nowicki, Jr.'s This Is Historic Times is not your usual comic. In his comics, profligate use of explanatory words are gauche, and the message has to reverberate. [more inside]
posted by blook at 7:45 AM PST - 64 comments

New York's ABC affiliate reports that Yankees owner George Steinbrenner has suffered a massive heart attack at his home in Tampa, Florida. Legendary New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner has suffered a heart attack and according to multiple reports, is in "extremely serious condition." He was rushed to St. Joseph's hospital in Tampa, Fla. Steinbrenner, who turned 80 on July 4, bought the Yankees in 1973 and has won an MLB-best 11 pennants and seven World Series championships during his tenure. Because of his failing health, he turned over the day-to-day operations of the organization to his two sons in November 2008.
posted by Fizz at 6:47 AM PST - 69 comments

And now, here's Gary Numan performing "Cars" on a bunch of cars. The performance is an ad for DieHard batteries. If you're freaking out about Mr. Numan selling out for car batteries, don't be a dummy. It's not the first time Gary Numan's done a commercial.
posted by SansPoint at 6:29 AM PST - 27 comments

Q: How many times was George H.W. Bush President? Once you say? Not so fast. On this day 25 years ago, as Ronald Reagan was about to go under anesthesia for surgery for colon cancer, he temporarily gave the V.P. the keys to the country for 7 hours and 50 minutes. It is the first and only time to date, that the Twenty Fifth Amendment has been invoked.
posted by timsteil at 6:21 AM PST - 60 comments

Relax and play pOnd. Make sure you stay to the end.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:11 AM PST - 7 comments

Helen Petts is a filmmaker who helps to run the Mopomoso series of concerts. Her YT channel is a treasure trove of high-quality recordings of free improv performances. [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns at 5:05 AM PST - 5 comments


Brought to you by the letter Y: The YMCA gives in to Sesame Street pressure and stops hogging the letters.
posted by karminai at 12:12 AM PST - 50 comments

July 12

Kabuki Democracy: Why a Progressive Presidency Is Impossible, for Now. And what we should do about it. (one-page link)
posted by mek at 10:59 PM PST - 96 comments

Typhoonized's You Tube channel has a collection of songs that have been slightly pitch-shifted, and sped up, which gives them a surprising quality all their own. Take Jon and Vangelis - He Is Sailing (original here), or try RYUIKI SAKAMOTO - OKINAWA SONG (Chin Nuku Juushi) and Astrud Gilberto - Agua De Beber. (with sci-fi/fantasy themed illustrations of unknown provenance)
posted by puny human at 9:01 PM PST - 15 comments



The day you have been waiting for all year has arrived: the 2010 winners of the Gowanus Studio Space Jell-O Mold Competition have been announced!
posted by emilyd22222 at 7:37 PM PST - 8 comments

Dirty Medicine — How medical supply behemoths stick it to the little guy, making America’s health care system more dangerous and expensive. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 4:06 PM PST - 14 comments

Is Yemen the New Afghanistan? Al Qaeda may have found the perfect combination of tribal hospitality, chaos and military opportunity. [Photo slideshow.]
posted by lullaby at 4:01 PM PST - 36 comments

Merchants of Doubt is a new book that reports how a small group of scientists committed to an extreme free-market ideology have been employed by large corporations over several decades to cast doubt on such different environmental issues as the risks of tobacco smoke, the dangers of DDT, the effectiveness of the Strategic Defence Initiative, the regulation of CFCs, and the causes of global warming. A review in the Christian Science Monitor calls this "one of the most important books of the year. Exhaustively researched and documented..."
posted by binturong at 3:49 PM PST - 48 comments

Physicist Erik Verlinde proposed in a recent paper that the force of gravity can be derived from the principles of thermodynamics. NY Times explains. [Physicist Lee] Smolin called it, “very interesting and also very incomplete.”
posted by jjray at 3:20 PM PST - 55 comments

Tuli Kupferberg, poet and co-founder of The Fugs, passed away today at the age of 86. [more inside]
posted by psylosyren at 2:57 PM PST - 36 comments

"Like many paleontologists, I believe that T. rex was a hunter: a forest hunter. More specifically, I believe that T. rex used the very same hunting strategy that millions of forest hunters practice today: stand hunting from a tree."
posted by brundlefly at 2:31 PM PST - 66 comments

When he was 32, his life seemed hopeless. He was bankrupt and without a job. He was grief stricken over the death of his first child and he had a wife and a newborn to support. Drinking heavily, he contemplated suicide. Instead, he decided decided that his life was not his to throw away: it belonged to the universe. Buckminster Fuller embarked on "an experiment to discover what the little, penniless, unknown individual might be able to do effectively on behalf of all humanity." If the architect, author, designer, inventor, and futurist Richard Buckminster "Bucky" Fuller were still alive, he would be 115 years old today. Though he died in 1983, his legacy grows on through recordings of his ideas and the Buckminster Fuller Institute. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 2:17 PM PST - 32 comments

The music video to "Boom! Shake the Room," by D.J. Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince (SLYT).
posted by WCityMike at 2:11 PM PST - 44 comments

Papyrus Watch exposes the most egregious uses of the played-out Papyrus font by graphic designers, businesses, and blockbuster Hollywood directors, among others. Does its widespread misuse mean that Papyrus is the new Comic Sans?
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 1:48 PM PST - 83 comments

On the coffee table, he's laid out the iconic name tags he and Linda were given, as well as their green seat assignments for the first of two tapings on September 22, 2008, in the Bob Barker Studio at CBS's Television City: 004 and 005 — right down in front, immediately to the left of the four podiums on Contestant's Row. He has the giant white cue card that a stagehand held up — TERRY KNIESS — because most contestants can't hear announcer Rich Fields telling them to come on down above the sound of the crowd. (Terry couldn't.) He also has the operating instructions for the Big Green Egg, "The World's Best Smoker and Grill," which Terry won with a perfect bid of $1,175 from Contestant's Row. It's by the pool out back, and Terry agrees that it's awesome. He has Linda's passport out, just in case, and their marriage certificate, dated April 7, 1972. "I know I would ask to see it," he says.
A great Esquire article about the only perfect Showcase bid in the history of The Price is Right. [more inside]
posted by kipmanley at 1:25 PM PST - 59 comments

A Texas company S2C Global Systems has announced that it is moving forward with a plan to ship 2.9 billion to 9 billion gallons of water a year from the small Alaskan town of Sitka to the west coast of India (near Mumbai). If the company succeeds in carrying out the shipments, the deal would represent the world’s first regular, bulk exports of water via tanker. The water will be redistributed to places in India, southeast Asia and the Middle East. The Alaskan town of about 8,000 people could earn up to 90 million a year in revenue.
posted by stbalbach at 1:20 PM PST - 53 comments

Hippy Kitchens are often happy kitchens.
posted by dchase at 1:12 PM PST - 50 comments

Eric Davidson, lead singer of the New Bomb Turks, has written a book exploring a much-overlooked and oft-imitated genre that he dubs Gunk Punk. We Never Learn came out June 1st 2010. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 1:03 PM PST - 15 comments

Click judiciously; the site is called instant epilePSY and not without reason. If you need annoying and occasionally baffling animated GIFs culled from Hungarian music videos, however, you'll be well served. (Some of the loopings are fairly clever.)
posted by Wolfdog at 12:23 PM PST - 18 comments

Nomadic Milk. Dutch artist Esther Polak uses GPS, white sand, and a robot to explore traditional versus industrial milk economies in Nigeria.
posted by shakespeherian at 11:13 AM PST - 5 comments

Take Me Out to the Ballgame is an American classic, the "national anthem of baseball." Written by Jack Norworth, with notable versions by Harry Caray and friends. Norworth recently got a new gravemarker, but cemetery rules says no changes could be made without approval from his family. When no family could be found, an empty grave was purchased and set aside for some future "unfortunate soul," who will get a teeny, tiny place in baseball history.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 10:45 AM PST - 29 comments


From off the streets of Cleveland, Harvey Pekar pioneered autobiopgraphical comics in the 70s with his self-published American Splendor. His tales of working as a file clerk lead to greater fame, including appearances on David Letterman and a movie about his life. He worked with many different artists, including his personal friend Robert Crumb. Beyond that, he was an inspiration for so many others. Harvey Pekar passed away last night at the age of 70.
posted by turaho at 8:43 AM PST - 209 comments


“What we try to do is build an unholy alliance between big guys and little guys." Tom Donohue, leader of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, goes on the record for an unbelievably revealing interview.
posted by jonp72 at 8:12 AM PST - 11 comments

Once, there was the shooter's sandwich. Now Tesco bring us a new lunchtime delicacy - the Lasagna Sandwich. Hungry for more unorthodox pasta products? Then try a Chicken Tikka Lasagne, or a Lasagna Pie [more inside]
posted by mippy at 7:49 AM PST - 65 comments

Couples from Western countries, such as Australia, the US, and the UK are turning to surrogates in India to carry their babies. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 7:01 AM PST - 45 comments


Tasmanian Devils rebranded after Warner Bros cartoon 'ruins reputation'. The Tasmanian Devil is being rebranded in an attempt to restores it reputation, which conservationists say has been damaged by the Warner Brothers cartoon. They believe the animal has been depicted as ferocious, aggressive and bloodthirsty and are now trying to give the devils an image overhaul and portray them as shy and retiring in an attempt to convince the Australian public that they are worth saving. Wild populations of Tasmanian devils are under grave threat from Devil Facial Tumour Disease Previously Discussed Here, a type of contagious cancer that has decimated their numbers by 60 per cent in 10 years.
posted by Fizz at 6:18 AM PST - 73 comments

After nine months of custody in Switzerland, Swiss authorities have today ruled not to extradite filmmaker Roman Polanski to the US, where he faces sentencing stemming from sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl in 1977. Polanski is now a free man. [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 6:14 AM PST - 292 comments

As Uganda reels following a bombing that killed at least 64 people in Kampala watching the World Cup final, CNN tells us "why the world should care." [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 5:20 AM PST - 36 comments

These folks in rural Arkansas and Missouri are getting jobs that are often reported as going to India and other countries. Is this a sign of American ingenuity or decline?
posted by ziadbc at 12:56 AM PST - 42 comments

July 11

An interview with caving researcher James M. Tabor. I haven't recently come across a finer link for pure imagination fuel than this brief interview with caver and caving researcher and writer James M. Tabor, author of Blind Descent. [more inside]
posted by nanojath at 11:19 PM PST - 16 comments

How to access Hulu from outside the U.S. without a proxy server.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:09 PM PST - 70 comments

Last year long-time motorcycle journalist Dexter Ford wrote this article for the NYT about helmet safety standards, a followup to his 2005 article "Blowing the Lid Off". Leaked emails (pdf) reveal that helmet manufacturers/advertisers were none too pleased, ultimately resulting in Ford being fired. (via hellforleather) [more inside]
posted by aerotive at 9:01 PM PST - 36 comments

LastPass is the last password manager you'll ever need. Available on almost all common platforms, its easy to use, and free. [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 8:55 PM PST - 73 comments

Born In the Sky: Upsetter at the Controls With Susan Cadogan - Do It Baby (Nice 'n Easy) and The Upsetters - All Combine.
posted by puny human at 8:38 PM PST - 8 comments

Hans Rosling, who helped usher in TED talks way back when using stunning visuals, envisions how the world will look in 50 years as global population grows to 9 billion. To check further population growth, which might have disastrous consequences, he exhorts us to raise the living standards of the poorest. [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 7:11 PM PST - 14 comments

China's enigmatic car industry. Did you know that China is the biggest car manufacturer in the world? 'Last year China overtook Japan as the world's biggest carmaker'. Did you know that China is the biggest car market in the world? 'This year it overtook America as the biggest car market'. Can you name any Chinese car brands? What constitutes a Chinese car brand? Volvo started out Swedish, was bought by Ford, and then sold to a Chinese company. But are Chinese brands merely copy cats? Not at all. 'In technology, one Chinese company is already ahead. With triumphant music, billowing smoke and a troupe of flamboyant dancers in white quasi-military uniforms, BYD launched its latest car, powered by a battery design so revolutionary that Warren Buffet, America's most famous investor, has put $250m (£170m) into the company.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 5:53 PM PST - 36 comments


"The Day That Color Didn't Exist: What Hurricane Alex Left Behind" — Photos by Diego Huerta. Via PetaPixel
posted by brundlefly at 1:24 PM PST - 7 comments

"An Interview with [Gay Porn Company] Bel Ami's George Duroy" [Warning: Pictures of shirtless gay porn actors.]
posted by andoatnp at 1:16 PM PST - 64 comments

Marvel Comics' Planet of the Apes magazine (1974-1977) , now forgotten by all but a few comics readers and genre film buffs, was canceled abruptly, leaving in mid-stream a story intended to go on for years. Now writer Doug Moench has allowed the original manuscripts of his unused scripts to be published for the first time, providing (some) closure to longtime readers and a fascinating look at how comics scripting happened way back when. [more inside]
posted by kittens for breakfast at 12:25 PM PST - 8 comments

Lewis Marshall "Grandpa" Jones was one heck of a banjo player and storyteller best known for his role on Hee Haw. Those Delmore Boys? Lord can they sang,sang,sang. Merle? Hell he invented a whole new way to pick. Want to learn how? Drawn together by their love of traditional gospel music, they became country music's first supergroup. The Brown's Ferry Four. Their complete recordings.
posted by timsteil at 10:52 AM PST - 9 comments



Through clever manipulation of Final Fantasy V's ROM ... Shadow and his gang replaced the game's Japanese text with their own fully-translated English script, marking the first time this title would be playable in English -- and beating Square's own efforts by two years. - 1up on ROM translation.
posted by griphus at 9:48 AM PST - 29 comments

The Shinnecocks have been a fixture in New York State for centuries — their beads became the wampum Dutch settlers used as money in the colonies — but the US Department of Interior never included them on its official list of Native American tribes. That all changed on June 14th. Almost four centuries since their first contact with Europeans and after a 32-year court battle, the 1,300 member impoverished Shinnecock Native American Nation was formally recognised by the US federal government. The tribe's tiny, 750-acre reservation in the middle of the Hamptons (home and summer playground to some the country's wealthiest Americans,) is now a semi-sovereign nation, allowing them to apply for Federal funding to help them build schools, health centers and to set up their own police force, as well as the right to open a casino. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:23 AM PST - 77 comments

After reaching several milestones in their Personal Robot 2 project over the last 2 years, Willow Garage, a robotics research startup located in Menlo Park, CA., gave eleven of their PR2 units to research institutions around the world for 24 months of beta projects and further development.
Some of the current abilities of the PR2 include bringing beer to thirsty engineers, navigating an office to find power outlets to recharge, playing pool, partying like it's 1983 and cleaning up leftovers. [more inside]
posted by starzero at 8:06 AM PST - 24 comments

American Ethnography Quasi-Weekly is a somewhat gonzo cabinet of curiosities -- a mix of photography, academic essay, archival materials, and bloggy postings on "outlaw aethetics" and outsider culture, presenting glimpses of American subcultures past and present, from Califormia low-riders to "hoochy-coochy" dancers to blackface tambourine jugglers, and plenty more. [more inside]
posted by Miko at 7:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Srebrenica: Genocide Reconstructed
In July 1995 Srebrenica was shelled and occupied by the Army of Republic of Srpska,VRS, despite being declared a protected area by the United Nations. More than 7,000 people were killed, the victims of genocide. Recently a wealth of data has been found in the home of the fugitive Gen. Ratko Mladic, who is still assumed alive by the Hague Chief Prosecutor in spite of his family petitioning for him to be declared dead.
15 years on Srebrenica buries its dead.
Amid a hurricane of killing, rape and 'ethnic cleansing', a movement striving in the opposite direction responded in the most powerful way they knew: with rock'n'roll. Fifteen years since War Child's Help LP, key figures reflect on the war – and music. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 7:15 AM PST - 17 comments

The "Barefoot Bandit" (previously), crashed an airplane in the Bahamas this month. The FBI and other law enforcment have been searching for him for over two years. His Facebook page has nearly 60 thousand friends. After eluding US authorities, he has been caught in the Bahamas. In other news, his mother is shopping for a book deal. Carry on.
posted by shockingbluamp at 7:00 AM PST - 136 comments

July 10

Forget Shorter Showers. Why personal change does not equal political change.
posted by mondaygreens at 11:08 PM PST - 177 comments

T y p eF a c e . [more inside]
posted by Hardcore Poser at 9:53 PM PST - 12 comments

Steven Seagal speaks out against Oil Companies [SLYT] ...in 1994, from the movie "On Deadly Ground", as Forrest Taft, a specialist dealing with oil drilling-related fires.
posted by humannaire at 8:41 PM PST - 30 comments

Flub and Utter: Jordan Scott discusses the role that stuttering plays in his poetry. (Flash) Read more of Scott's work.
posted by roll truck roll at 7:24 PM PST - 9 comments

The History Chef! is a fun blog that explores the intersection of food and history. There are short entries on historical figures and topics like Thomas Jefferson's Chef and The Embalmed Beef Scandal. Of course there are recipes: Thomas Jefferson Macaroni and Cheese, George Washington Garlic Mashed Potatoes, and Andrew Jackson Cheddar Cheese Bread. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 6:21 PM PST - 15 comments

Urban gardening and agriculture are becoming increasingly important as our world becomes more urbanized. Urban Gardening Help is for those environmentally conscious urban dwellers who want to use hydroponics and other tools to create a green corner devoted to nature in their own home. Urban Gardens looks for innovative and eco-friendly designs, trends, and ideas for the stylish urban home. See, for example, tiny herb gardens, where succulent cuttings come in small packages. Urban Garden Casual works with the constraints of limited-space, light, and micro-climates created from the shadows of neighboring buildings by using unconventional ideas like the garden pouch.
posted by netbros at 5:54 PM PST - 9 comments

Unicorn Booty features gay-friendly North American businesses who buy a day to be featured with their own custom YouTube video, social media presence, and the opportunity for readers to win or obtain their products at a discount. 10% of their profits go to a different LGBTQ organisation per quarter. Past businesses featured include travel companies, cycling clothing, and grooming products dedicated to gay people.
posted by divabat at 5:16 PM PST - 20 comments

The History of Nikola Tesla - A Short Story. In celebration of the 154th anniversary of Nikola Tesla's birth. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 4:48 PM PST - 26 comments

The Turn by William Langewiesche tells the story of pilots' fight against their innate sense of balance, which due to Newtonian physics, may insist a graveyard spiral is level, or vice versa. wikipedia has more, but essentially SLAtlantic.
posted by d. z. wang at 4:31 PM PST - 27 comments

He was considered a shoo in for an equestrian medal in in the ’36 Olympics but went to war instead. He led the last cavalry charge against artillery and tanks of the British army. Known as Commandante Diavolo, he waged guerrilla warfare in Eritrea alongside his beautiful and heavily armed lover Khadija, daughter of an Ethiopian Muslim chieftain. He served as a diplomat for thirty years and more than once saved lives during military coups. He retired to Ireland (for the horses, of course) where he rode and hunted fox well into his nineties. Please pause for a moment for the passing of Amedeo Guillat, the most decorated soldier of the Italian army. [more inside]
posted by IndigoJones at 4:23 PM PST - 27 comments

A photographic essay, a glimpse inside the Real Doll factory. Video interview with Matt McMullen (6m) , Real Doll creator. Guys And Dolls (46m), a BBC documentary about Real Dolls and their owners. (All links pretty much NSFW) [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 3:25 PM PST - 81 comments

It's like a concert tour but with sketchbooks. Get a sketchbook, fill it based on a theme (you can pick one or have one assigned randomly) by a certain date, then let it go on tour and eventually be a barcoded, checkout-able book in the Brooklyn Art Library that you can track. I love this idea.
posted by jragon at 3:09 PM PST - 17 comments

Jessica Hilltout has been traveling around Africa taking pictures of matches as they are played in the continent's small villages, its players, goals, boots and balls. It is especially striking to compare that last collection to all the official World Cup balls. You can see slightly larger versions of some of Hilltout's pictures here and here.
posted by Kattullus at 2:26 PM PST - 11 comments

Real-Estate Tycoon Deconstructs 'Twilight' "Barrack describes a lonely evening on a yacht in Turkey after a cancelled business meeting. In the yacht, Mr. Barrack writes, he came upon a book on which 'were written the words that strike terror in the hearts of every macho, red-blooded male... TWILIGHT'. He goes on..."
posted by kliuless at 2:22 PM PST - 35 comments

"Eggs? Yeah, we fix 'em. Well, are they broken all the way or are they just cracked? OK, well that's good, just bring 'em right in..." The year: 1984. The sketch: "Roy's Food Repair". The stars: John Candy, Valri Bromfield, Dave Thomas, Carrie Fisher, and Paul Simon. The show: a short-lived NBC comedy variety program produced by Lorne Michaels called The New Show. [more inside]
posted by Atom Eyes at 11:42 AM PST - 7 comments

The World Cup Final is almost here, only 24 hours and 30 minutes away: Sunday Night, 19:30 GMT [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 11:17 AM PST - 206 comments

A Moroccan man whose wife wears a veil has been denied citizenship on the basis that he has failed to assimilate into French society. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 11:10 AM PST - 91 comments



Minecraft (previously discussed here) is a building game being developed by Notch. The developer (singular - it's mostly a one man show) has been busy since the last time the game was posted. Before, the focus was mainly creative, cooperative building. The recent direction the game has taken is a sprawling, single player survival game, where the player must harvest resources to build defenses against a hostile world. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 9:42 AM PST - 12 comments

The Amygdaloids (beware automatic mp3) mix neuroscience and rock and roll, and they're pretty sharp.
posted by Mooseli at 9:17 AM PST - 3 comments

Forró is popular dance music from northeastern Brazil. Forró em Vinil is a blog with out of catalog forró gems for download. But wait, is this legal? [more inside]
posted by Tom-B at 8:19 AM PST - 11 comments

At three minutes per philosopher, you can finally spare the time to learn what Descartes, Hume, Aristotle, Locke, Galileo, Pythagoras, Aquinas, and Kant had to say. Or at least you can be entertained learning what Cracked.com contributor S. Peter Davis thinks you should know about them. (MLYT & NSFW (language))
posted by Obscure Reference at 7:26 AM PST - 27 comments

The depravity of Major League Eating. "Every Fourth of July, Nathan's Famous, the frankfurter chain, hosts a hot-dog eating contest in Coney Island, N.Y. Tragically, this year's contest was marred. Six-time champion Takeru Kobayashi was hauled away by police after storming the stage. He had been barred from the contest for refusing to sign a contract with Major League Eating. Contracts? Major League Eating? Is this some kind of joke? Nope. It's worse. It's a joke that has turned serious."
posted by Fizz at 6:51 AM PST - 52 comments

Perspective Matters. The exact same moment in history (the arrival of Union troops in Fredericksburg VA in 1862), as described by a white woman resident of the area, and a black slave. It would be an understatement to say they had diverging viewpoints.
posted by COD at 6:31 AM PST - 27 comments

Lights, camera ... Edison! Thomas Edison & Co. made the first movie ever shown in public - Blacksmith Scene - a film about drinking on the job. They also had many other cinematic firsts: The first sound film, the first romance (The Kiss), the first blockbuster (The Great Train Robbery), and the first splatter film (The Execution of Mary, Queen of Scots). [Previously]
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:59 AM PST - 16 comments

Sequels of 2 popular flash games for your Saturday clicking pleasure: In Crush that Castle 2 you take the role of the siege master and destroy the castles on the islands of Crushtania with your trebuchet. Not in the mood for medieval warfare? Then follow Sushi Cat on its Honeymoon and achieve full belly. [more inside]
posted by starzero at 2:42 AM PST - 17 comments

(Late) Friday Flash Fun: CellCraft. Build and improve a cell, learn how real cells work, and save the Platypus species!
posted by cthuljew at 2:17 AM PST - 13 comments


July 9

Less than two weeks after a controversial paper came to light advocating the pre-natal treatment of some female fetuses with a hormone to make their behavior more stereotypically female (previously discussed here) comes news of actual animal research on causing the opposite inclination. By knocking out the fucose mutarotase gene, scientists in South Korea have apparently created "Lesbian mice" who prefer other female mice and who resist the attempts of male mice to mate with them. Article abstract, and coverage by The Telegraph.
posted by Asparagirl at 11:58 PM PST - 19 comments

"I have just got my hands on something wonderful and precious. It is five computer drives containing the unedited rushes of everything shot by the BBC in Afghanistan over the last thirty years." [more inside]
posted by suedehead at 11:14 PM PST - 30 comments

Lost Films, a project of the German Federal Cultural Foundation, is a wiki aimed at identifying the over 3500 films declared orphaned or lost in their archives. Other archivists and the public can go to the Identify section and look at surviving photographs, film fragments, and documents, as well as comment and upload any materials of your own, just in case you had promo materials for some unidentified 1915 German war buddy comedy just lying around. (Via Slate).
posted by Weebot at 10:16 PM PST - 6 comments

There have been worse oil spills in history. The Lakeview Gusher followed by the Gulf War Oil Spill are the two worst in history. Another is the Ixtoc I Oil Spill which was also in the gulf. This gives us a good frame of reference for what to expect right? We will cap this thing by the end of next month right? Or is the government lying to us about what's going on in the gulf of mexico? Is Mat Simmons crazy? He believes that oil is covering 40% of the gulf beneath the surface. Does this man know what he's talking about. [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 9:14 PM PST - 105 comments

Nothing compares with the experience of wandering through the archives of a college radio station, reading the stickers pasted on the old LPs and seeing first-hand how DJs viewed canonical records when they first came out. The KEXP blog puts those stickers online in Review Revue. Read contemporary reactions to: Paul Simon, Graceland. Peter Broggs, Cease the War. LL Cool J, Bigger and Deffer. Nirvana, Sliver 7". Lou Reed, New York. Tin Machine s/t. Sonic Youth, Goo. The Stone Roses s/t.
posted by escabeche at 7:22 PM PST - 25 comments

By combining speedruns with the large-scale world maps from the VGMaps, these "zoomed out" videos of classic NES games provide a unique perspective on the game world (best viewed in 1080p). Metroid - Mega Man 2 - Contra - Super Mario Bros 3 - Zelda
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 6:53 PM PST - 32 comments

MLYT:This is advertising--but it is advertising that made me laugh at the end of a horrible week. So, I give you the elevator, the shopping carts and my favorite, the slide. Enjoy.
posted by agatha_magatha at 5:21 PM PST - 39 comments

From the maker of Tone Matrix -- a new musical toy. [previously]
posted by cubby at 5:20 PM PST - 24 comments

Cary in the Sky with Diamonds. "Before Timothy Leary and the Beatles, LSD was largely unknown and unregulated. But in the 1950s, as many as 100 Hollywood luminaries—Cary Grant and Esther Williams among them—began taking the drug as part of psychotherapy. With LSD research beginning a comeback, the authors recount how two Beverly Hills doctors promoted a new 'wonder drug,' at $100 a session, profoundly altering the lives of their glamorous patients." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 4:39 PM PST - 12 comments

8bit Cities: Amsterdam - Austin - Berlin - Detroit - London - New York - Paris - San Francisco - Seattle - Washington, D.C.
posted by BeerFilter at 4:30 PM PST - 17 comments

Tommy Gauthier and Antoine Dufour are a very talented guitar/fiddle duo (usually) who draw influence from nuevo tango, folky bluegrass, metal, and some other harder to classify places.
posted by DZack at 3:53 PM PST - 5 comments


A recent survey indicates that Americans are split on whether Supreme Court Justices should be elected, and a majority favor expanding constitutional protection of rights, incuding gender equality. The survey, based on recent interviews of 1000 Americans, was just presented at the Aspen Ideas Festival by Mark Penn , CEO, and Don Baer, Chairman, of Penn Schoen Berland, the market research and consulting firm that conducted the survey. The margin of error is 3.1% overall.
posted by bearwife at 2:20 PM PST - 44 comments

Chinese Outsourcer Seeks U.S. Workers With IQ of 125 and Up. "A Chinese IT outsourcing company that has started hiring new U.S. computer science graduates to work in Shanghai requires prospective job candidates to demonstrate an IQ of 125 or above on a test it administers to sort out job applicants. In doing so, Bleum Inc. is following a hiring practice it applies to college recruits in China. But a new Chinese college graduate must score an IQ of 140 on the company's test. An IQ test is the first screen for any U.S. or Chinese applicant."
posted by eccnineten at 1:44 PM PST - 79 comments

On April Fool's Day, MC Chris made a song about Twin Peaks. Here is a fan made video for the song
posted by P.o.B. at 1:22 PM PST - 37 comments

There's been plenty of politically partisan debate about who or what ultimately caused the real estate crash that triggered the recent US financial crisis. One popular view blames "the Democrats and their efforts to expand homeownership to people who, in some cases, may not have been quite ready for it." But contrary to this view, new data strongly suggests that throughout the real estate collapse, the rich have actually been defaulting on mortgages for strategic reasons at much higher rates than the huddled masses. [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 11:47 AM PST - 131 comments

Any of us who lived as kids in the UK in the 1970s will remember two things: being yelled at by adults, and being subjected to the Green Cross Code ads in which celebrity adults told us how to cross the road safely. So if getting yelled at by famous people while you are jaywalking is your idea of a good time, regale in commands from footballer Kevin Keegan, rocker Alvin Stardust, boxer Joe Bugner, Elvis impersonator Les Gray, the bumbling Dad's Army, and even the real Darth Vadar.
posted by salishsea at 10:49 AM PST - 43 comments


Is Sitting While Autistic a Crime? Newsweek explores what happens when police encounter autistic individuals. This law enforcement training video attempts to reduce those risks. (autoplays, 21 min - short YouTube preview here).
posted by desjardins at 10:06 AM PST - 41 comments


In the mid 80s Honda produced a series of commercials for its popular scooter series by employing a motley collection of (mostly musical) celebrities. DEVO - Grace Jones (with Adam Ant) - Miles Davis - Loud Reed (or his music anyway) - Jim McMahon - Sandra Bernhardt
posted by The Whelk at 8:46 AM PST - 33 comments

A user on food blog TheKitchn asks "Why do frog legs jump and dance when salted?" The answer? Unused ATP in the muscle cells. [more inside]
posted by phunniemee at 8:17 AM PST - 27 comments

io9 decided that Firefly needed a "tight-ass killer 1980s intro." So they cut one together: the article, or just the intro itself. A fan's end-credits, even with a nice slight soupçon of MTM at the end. Firefly fans might find it more interesting, though, that io9 noted a little later in the day that Nathan Fillion had tweeted on Wednesday night a picture of Joss Whedon, Alan Tudyk, Nathan Fillion, and Adam Baldwin all looking upward into a bright light, with the text "Together. Again." But ... no, it doesn't mean that, unfortunately. [Still, if you need your Simon or Kaylee fix, look to Warehouse 13 next Tuesday, as Maher and Staite are guest-starring together in "Mild-Mannered" (trailer).]
posted by WCityMike at 7:35 AM PST - 213 comments

"This post touched me in places I've never been touched" Over at Salon, Laura Miller talks about those little belches of beatification -- Book Blurbs. The Guardian is running a contest where you (Yes, YOU!) can try to out praise all comers by blurbing The DaVinci Code. [more inside]
posted by Trochanter at 6:54 AM PST - 48 comments

The Toronto 18. "The [Toronto] Star was the first to break the news, just over four years ago, that an al-Qaeda inspired homegrown terror cell had been busted in Toronto. ... Numerous publication bans have kept the full story from the public. Now, with the case over, we can present the complete narrative of the Toronto 18: Who they are, how they met, what they did." This is a great example of how to present long-form journalism online.
posted by chunking express at 6:44 AM PST - 46 comments

How to choose a watermelon? Do you go by shape, colour, or spotting? Thump or not? Red or yellow? Seeded or seedless? Square? Grilled? Champion watermelons. App for your iPhone? Are you still confused, watch this instructional video?
posted by Fizz at 5:46 AM PST - 62 comments

As the City of Cleveland reacts badly to the end result of a long, drawn out process, Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert takes matters into his own hands, flipping out on the his team's website, penning his screed in everyone's favorite font. [more inside]
posted by Ghidorah at 12:44 AM PST - 189 comments

July 8


GodBlock is a web filter that blocks religious content. It is targeted at parents and schools who wish to protect their kids from the often violent, sexual, and psychologically harmful material in many holy texts, and from being indoctrinated into any religion before they are of the age to make such decisions. When installed properly, GodBlock will test each page that your child visits before it is loaded, looking for passages from holy texts, names of religious figures, and other signs of religious propaganda. If none are found, then your child is allowed to browse freely.
posted by Obscure Reference at 8:25 PM PST - 128 comments


A short story of traffic tickets, goldfish, and love starring David Tennant and Sophie Hunter
posted by Salvor Hardin at 6:24 PM PST - 11 comments

"The Interview was not a happy invention.... In the first place, the interviewer is the reverse of an inspiration, because you are afraid of him." An epic rant by Mark Twain, published for the first time this week. [more inside]
posted by ardgedee at 5:09 PM PST - 31 comments

Metal Couture design by Manuel Albarran. Some of his latest works are fantastic (also NSFW). [Via] [more inside]
posted by homunculus at 4:29 PM PST - 11 comments

Stanford's library was running out of space for printed books and journals, so they've built a new space ... with even less room for printed titles and issues. It's hastening the move to a digital library. NPR reports.
posted by anothermug at 4:14 PM PST - 75 comments

CityLights interview with Pauline Kael -- 1::2::3::4 (approx. 40 mins, NSI, 1982) Topics include Cecil B. Demille, Robert Preston, John Boorman’s Zardoz, Sean Connery, Roger Moore, James Bond films, and Lorenzo Semple Jr. More interviews from the National Screen Institute and Brian Linehan here, including John Candy, Eugene Levy, Christopher Plummer, and Ian McKellen
posted by puny human at 4:00 PM PST - 13 comments

The federal Defense of Marriage Act has been ruled unconstitutional by Judge Joseph Tauro of the District Court of Massachusetts.
posted by fireoyster at 3:29 PM PST - 149 comments

Now! 75 Chart Medley. Brett Domino (wikipedia, official site) and Steven Peavis perform a medley of hits from 2010, using: soft drink cans, iPod Touch (using DigiDrummer app), Accordion, Roland E-36 Keyboard, Korg Digital Piano, Stylophone Beatbox, Theremin, Ukulele, Egg Shaker, Roland AX-Synth Keytar, Recorders, Glockenspiel, Kazoos, and Stylophones (previously). Via the excellent and hilarious Graham Clark of Stop Podcasting Yourself. [more inside]
posted by rossination at 3:00 PM PST - 10 comments

Year: 2025. Mission: Save Moonbase Alpha after critical systems were damaged by a meteor strike. A free Steam-powered 3D-immersive game from NASA. Windows only.
posted by jjray at 2:42 PM PST - 44 comments

Yesterday, the Spanish national football squad won its first World Cup semifinal. A distinguished supporter insisted on personally congratulating them in the locker room. (SLYT, but priceless. Watch in particular the hero of the match enter the frame around 1:16).
posted by Skeptic at 1:45 PM PST - 83 comments

Today Minnesota finalizes a $44 million deal to conserve approximately 188,000 acres of forest, wetlands, and shoreline through what is known as a conservation easement. In addition to private funds from entities such as the Blandin Foundation, the easement is being paid for through the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment to Minneosta's state constitution, which just over a year ago created permanent funding for natural resource, arts, and cultural projects through a 0.375% state sales tax. UPM-Blandin Paper Co., will continue to own the land and be allowed to harvest wood, but the land cannot be developed or subdivided and the public must have access to the land. [more inside]
posted by Muddler at 12:09 PM PST - 31 comments

A lack of federal rules has made the nation the dumping ground for cheap, adulterated and even dangerous oils. With many consumers in the U.S. becoming ill after consuming "olive oil", the USDA is finally moving to create standards defining what is "virgin olive oil". These are supposed to come out in the fall. Except 'the new rules are voluntary — not mandatory — so the prospect of more slick shenanigans continues'. Meanwhile, the FDA 'which oversees most food-label accuracy issues, said the agency does not regularly test olive oils for adulteration, and that it relies on tips about problems from the public, trade groups and others'. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 9:55 AM PST - 74 comments

Canada's next Governor-General will be David Johnston, currently President of the University of Waterloo in Ontario, a tech-oriented school. Johnston is a legal scholar specializing in securities regulation, corporation law, public policy, and IT law. Here's his CV [pdf]. Why Johnston, instead of a journalist or public figure as has been the trend? For one, a legal scholar will be better able to navigate potential constitutional issues during minority governments. Johnston has pledged to be "a stalwart defender of our Canadian heritage, of Canadian institutions, and of the Canadian people".
posted by PercussivePaul at 9:36 AM PST - 65 comments

When "Proto-Pop" artist Larry Rivers' died in 2002, he left behind extensive archives of his letters, paperwork, photographs and film documenting the New York artistic and literary scene from the 1940s through the 1980s. They chronicle his friendships and relationships with dozens of artists, musicians and writers, from Willem de Kooning and Andy Warhol to Frank O’Hara. Also included: films and videos of his two adolescent daughters, naked or topless, being interviewed by their father about their developing breasts. Now, one daughter, who says she was pressured to participate beginning when she was 11, is demanding that material be removed from the archive and returned to her and her sister. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:04 AM PST - 74 comments

Greetings from the Twine Ball, wish you were here: "But you can't see out of the side of the car, because the windows are completely covered with the decals of all the places where we've already been: there's Elvis-O-Rama, the Tupperware Museum, the Boll Weevil Monument, and Cranberry World, the Shuffleboard Hall Of Fame, Poodle Dog Rock, and the Mecca of Albino Squirrels. We've been to ghost towns, theme parks, wax museums, and a place where you can drive through the middle of a tree ... " [more inside]
posted by WCityMike at 7:30 AM PST - 41 comments

Denha is a synthesizer enthusiast who also builds very small and fairly complex marble runs out of brass wire, carved wood, and 9/32" ball bearings. [more inside]
posted by luvcraft at 7:27 AM PST - 25 comments


Swedish-Cherokee artist America Meredith shows you how to be a Cherokee beatnik (or just talk like one). [more inside]
posted by JoanArkham at 6:38 AM PST - 5 comments

What are the things that will help create more Nimble Cities? (This post is heavy with slate-related links.) Slate asks readers to help make transportation in and between cities more efficient, safe, and pleasant. "While we're certainly not opposed to your most forward-looking proposals: Let's fire up Chicago's once sprawling pneumatic tube network; let's not let those zeppelin masts go to waste!--what we're most interested in are things in the here and now, things that are already making (or will soon be making) a difference in your city." Should cities install moving sidewalks? How about eliminating parking spaces or bicycle highways? [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 5:08 AM PST - 81 comments

July 6 (or maybe July 7) marked the 130th anniversary of the birth of Otto Frederick Rohwedder, the inventor of sliced bread. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 5:04 AM PST - 37 comments

It seems cosmically appropriate that the Spider-man theme song (as recorded by Michael Bublé) should be used by swing dancers as well as solo performers. Here's a live rendition by the Russian group Mad Swing in Vladivostok, and (just for something different) here's a chronicle of Spider-Man's adventures set to Swing Swing by the eponysterical All-American Rejects. Previously and previouslier.
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:27 AM PST - 15 comments

Shatner stole my bicycle (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 2:57 AM PST - 23 comments

July 7

He's no Trent Reznor or Radiohead, but Volker Kahl is pushing from the bottom of the sales charts, making his post-Beefcake work (under the nom-de-sampler Kattoo) available online. [more inside]
posted by ChrisR at 9:23 PM PST - 53 comments

Oakland, California, is bracing for a possible repeat of the 2009 riot [previously] once a verdict in the trial of former BART cop Johannes Mehserle for the 2009 shooting of Oscar Grant [previously] comes in. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 8:58 PM PST - 316 comments

63 years ago little green men landed in the desert, or did they? I've lived in New Mexico for large parts of my life, and if there is anywhere aliens would land, it probably would be there. If they didn't land there afterall, maybe they will soon with the installation of the new spaceport.
posted by ziadbc at 8:42 PM PST - 40 comments

Meet the Mac note taking app Notational Velocity: An attempt to loosen the mental blockages to recording information and to scrape away the tartar of convention that handicaps its retrieval. [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:37 PM PST - 53 comments


One of the most rhythmically solid, tastefully understated and (all too often) criminally underrated drummers in the history of rock music turned 70 today, and you'll forgive me if I couldn't let the day pass without a nod in his direction. You've probably heard of him. [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:49 PM PST - 98 comments

Octavia Nasr Canned at CNN. CNN's Chief Middle East correspondent for 20 years, Octavia Nasr tweeted “Sad to hear of the passing of Sayyed Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah... One of Hezbollah’s giants I respect a lot.” She was fired by CNN shortly afterward because they believed "her credibility in her position as senior editor for Middle Eastern affairs has been compromised going forward".
posted by falameufilho at 3:46 PM PST - 130 comments

Multiuser Sketchpad is a collaborative drawing tool, created in Javascript by Mr. Doob (Previously).
posted by gwint at 2:04 PM PST - 48 comments

As suburbs become home to more poor people, immigrants, minorities, senior citizens and households with no children and we face what may be the end of suburbia, planners are wondering what do we do with suburbs? [more inside]
posted by lunit at 1:15 PM PST - 127 comments


In jail? Post bail. No matter your crime, interest, or affiliation, there's a bail bond agent for you. Suspect in Snow White's demise? Grumpy's (video auto-starts); Mob? No prob. Goodfellas, Godfather's? Godfather's! [more inside]
posted by zippy at 11:11 AM PST - 46 comments

Hippie Crack -- The Village Voice profiles the "Nitrous Oxide Mafia" that follows the jam band circuit selling balloons in parking lots.
posted by empath at 11:04 AM PST - 158 comments


Bruno Maag hates Helvetcia so much he created a new font.
posted by Artw at 10:54 AM PST - 84 comments

U.S. Patent 1732708 "...relates to street torches, such as are commonly used for illuminating road obstructions." Starting in 1929, The Toledo Pressed Steel Co. manufactured millions of small, round kerosene-burning torches (sometimes called smudge pots) that look like cartoon bombs. [more inside]
posted by usonian at 10:22 AM PST - 14 comments

Super Mario Bros. walkthrough. [Seven-minute Vimeo link] [more inside]
posted by cgc373 at 10:19 AM PST - 38 comments



What would happen if the earth stopped spinning? ArcGIS was used to perform complex raster analysis and volumetric computations and generate maps that visualize these results.
posted by gman at 9:06 AM PST - 51 comments

Science Blogs is a confederation of, as it says on the tin, blogs about science. They host such sites as Pharyngula, Good Math, Bad Math, and The Primate Diaries, among many others. Now they host Food Frontiers, a blog about nutrition -- written by PepsiCo. Many folks there are not happy. Overreaction to a single site with, at the moment, only one actual post? Or legitimate concern over scientific ethics? Why not have a refreshing ice-cold beverage while you ponder it?
posted by Legomancer at 8:19 AM PST - 43 comments

Microsoft introduces "an amazingly obvious tweak to battery tech that should save us some headaches, as well as several trillion hours of head-scratching and peering into dark holes." The innovation, called "Instaload" is a simple, low-tech battery contact design that allows cylindrical batteries (disposable and rechargeable) to be inserted in either direction, so users don't have to worry about which end is positive or negative. How? It puts a set of positive and negative contacts at both ends of a battery compartment. (From Microsoft: Press Release / Overview / Technology Brochure (pdf)) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:56 AM PST - 113 comments

How to Make an American Job Before It's Too Late. Andy Grove, from Intel, writes about America's lost manufacturing sector. [more inside]
posted by chunking express at 7:28 AM PST - 74 comments

"His fiancee smiled and commented, 'Isn't that cute. They have the spirit of giving.' That really set me off, as my regular readers can imagine. 'No!' I exclaimed [...] 'They're giving away their parents' things [...] It's not theirs to give.' I pushed the button to roll down the window and stuck my head out to set them straight. 'You must charge something for the lemonade.'"
posted by WCityMike at 7:19 AM PST - 124 comments



July 6

Jezebel calls the Daily Show a boys club (in part for hiring Olivia Munn). Women on the Daily Show responds. Slate jumps in. (hat tip)
posted by phyrewerx at 11:59 PM PST - 292 comments

The Lucretian swerve: The biological basis of human behavior and the criminal justice system
As de Duve has written, “If … neuronal events in the brain determine behavior, irrespective of whether they are conscious or unconscious, it is hard to find room for free will. But if free will does not exist, there can be no responsibility, and the structure of human societies must be revised”.
Ben Libet & free will, previously on metafilter. (And more on: Lucretius, Dualism, Philosophy of mind, and Free Will 1, 2.)
posted by scalespace at 9:20 PM PST - 100 comments

Marine Safety Specialist Mario Vittone knows what it looks like when someone is drowning, and you probably don't. It's deceptively quiet, undramatic, and happens so fast that bystanders may not even know it's happening. A drowning person's brain kicks into an instinctive mode that prevents yelling for help.
posted by ivey at 9:00 PM PST - 68 comments

Drugs seeped into the band, and were accompanied by an entourage of lowlifes stuck in a dizzying cycle of despair. Theresa was uninterested in the drug world yet she was too afraid to challenge her situation in her role as backup singer and dependent partner of Osborne. After nine turbulent years, the tension came to a head. Theresa had finally decided to confront Osborne about the drugs during a show at the famed Howlin' Wolf in New Orleans. The conversation predictably turned confrontational and with the usual crowd of partygoers surrounding the backstage area, Theresa snapped. She flung her violin through the window of the club. Glass shattered all over the ground and her violin lay broken beyond repair. It was over. Such is the life, death and the rebirth of accomplished violinist and singer,Theresa Andersson's music career. [more inside]
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 8:31 PM PST - 14 comments

Is James Bond past his sell-by date? What’s the difference between ’suspended indefinitely’ and officially dead? When it comes to James Bond and the planned twenty-third movie featuring the character, it can be difficult to tell. We’ve known for months that EON Productions had suspended development on the film thanks to MGM’s financial troubles, but now there’s a report circulating that the film is officially dead. But is it really? [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 7:43 PM PST - 80 comments

Living with the Enemy. "Applying the ideas of Holocaust survivor Jean Améry to present day Rwanda, our author argues that reconciliation after genocide is just another form of torture."
posted by homunculus at 7:30 PM PST - 27 comments

What warfighters eat. What's healthier. Video is from an all-day seminar at NIH. Start around minute 58 through 1:13 to hear the marine presenting in detail what warfighters currently get to eat -- first hand from the guy who handles supplying them, in detail. Start earlier around minute 12 for what would be better 'nutritional armor' for warfighters (Dr. Bill Land). Many more parts to the presentation. All worthwhile. [more inside]
posted by hank at 6:17 PM PST - 44 comments

"I'm headin' down the Atlanta highway, lookin' for the love getaway." These lyrics to the B-52s' "Love Shack" inspired a lengthy list modestly titled "Some Road Songs." Planning to make a road song mix tape? This is the motherlode. Surprisingly (or not?), the list is hosted on the Federal Highway Administration website. Browsing around the site, you'll also find information on the history of the Interstate System, articles from Public Roads magazine, and a selection of "Back in Time" articles about highway history by Rickie Longfellow. [more inside]
posted by litlnemo at 5:47 PM PST - 43 comments

"This July, while others are relaxing poolside, head back to the classroom - from the comfort of your own home. That may sound like an oxymoron but Glenn's new academic program is only available online."
Glenn Beck University? Yes. Glenn Beck University. [more inside]
posted by mondaygreens at 4:01 PM PST - 116 comments

Order of Tales has ended. However, you can read it in its entirety from the beginning. This follow up to Rice Boy (previously, previouslier) has gorgeous art and an epic story. Action, adventure, beautiful hand-drawn typography. Now we wait for Evan Dahm's next project.
posted by cthuljew at 4:00 PM PST - 13 comments

Secret of AA: After 75 Years, We Don’t Know How It Works. "There is evidence that a big part of AA’s effectiveness may have nothing to do with the actual (12) steps. It may derive from something more fundamental: the power of the group. The importance of this is reflected by the fact that the more deeply AA members commit to the group, rather than just the program, the better they fare." [more inside]
posted by netbros at 3:58 PM PST - 145 comments

Free during the World Cup the IOP (Institute of Physics) has a collection of papers all about football (soccer). Also related is NASA's recent findings regarding the randomness of the new Adidas ball.
posted by ozomatli at 3:55 PM PST - 8 comments

Britain Is Puzzled by Its Inflation Problem in a Downturn. Inflation in Britain is an economic mystery. It seems unique in the Western World which on the whole is closer to the dangers of deflation than inflation. April of this year was particularly bad - in an inflation spike that alarmed Britain, 'British price inflation including housing costs hit a 20-year high of 5.3% in April, sending shockwaves through an economy still struggling to exit recession'. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 2:11 PM PST - 48 comments

The Mark of a Masterpiece. The company combined the forensic triumphalism of “C.S.I.” with the lottery ethos of “Antiques Roadshow.”

An in-depth profile of Peter Paul Biro, acclaimed forensic art authenticator featured in the 2006 documentary Who the *$&% Is Jackson Pollock? (previously), professional art restorer, swindler, con man, and art forger.
posted by shakespeherian at 12:34 PM PST - 20 comments

Illusion Illusions
posted by andoatnp at 12:23 PM PST - 35 comments

As Blizzard prepares for the next World of Warcraft expansion, they are updating their server system, BattleNet, to use a real-name identification system called RealID, allowing your friends -- and their friends -- to see your real name. Some like it, some hate it. The system is optional; but today, Blizzard announced that all posts on their official forums will be under the poster's real name. [more inside]
posted by waraw at 10:54 AM PST - 322 comments

Picky Eating might be added to the DSM.
posted by backseatpilot at 9:08 AM PST - 358 comments

On Saturday, Cuba issued an unprecedented public report on the status of an imprisoned dissident. Guillermo Fariñas Hernández began his hunger strike in February, the day after the first Cuban hunger striker death in almost forty years. He is now near death. [more inside]
posted by hat at 8:18 AM PST - 21 comments

He says: "The internet's completely over. I don't see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. They won't pay me an advance for it and then they get angry when they can't get it. "The internet's like MTV. At one time MTV was hip and suddenly it became outdated. Anyway, all these computers and digital gadgets are no good."
After releasing Cause & Effect and Hot Summer through his local Minneapolis public radio station, Prince elects to forego official digital release of his new album, "20Ten". Instead, he will give it away through France's Courrier International (July 8), England's Daily Mirror and Scotland's Daily Record (July 10), and Germany's Rolling Stone (July 22), starting this week. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 8:09 AM PST - 139 comments

A D.C. couple wants children, but not now, and are worried about infertility creeping up on them as they get deeper into their thirties. They came up with a novel solution -- donating frozen embryos to their future selves. The procedure is not uncommon for couples with fertility problems; will it become a popular insurance option for young couples who just aren't ready for kids? They might want to think about what to do if they have more embryos than they want. Or what happens if they get divorced.
posted by escabeche at 8:03 AM PST - 45 comments

Prince and Kelly Clarkson Marry? Idaho No Longer A State? A Pomeranian Blight? Is this flimflamery? No, it is LIE BLOG, a place for lies. [via mefi projects]
posted by The Whelk at 7:31 AM PST - 22 comments


Nevertheless, many of the gamers I encounter report the same experience of feeling as if they have engaged in some kind of transgression. There’s often a sense of guilt that comes with tales of gaming exploits, as if games were a vice or a character flaw, a symptom of one kind or another. [...] So my cards are on the table: I’m going to offer some alternative, positive descriptions. This analysis will show how video games have inspired artists, transformed rags into riches, given purpose to empty lives, and entertained bored people on a Sunday afternoon. We’ll see how games turned young people into heroes and how gaming has enabled the realization of previously unimaginable ambitions. We’ll see how games can make us better people, how they dissolve the horrors of boredom—and how they can function as propaganda for a wide range of worthy and unworthy causes.
This Gaming Life by Jim Rossignol (of Rock, Paper, Shotgun) is a book about gaming, gamers, and how they affect each other - available in full and for free under a Creative Commons licence.
posted by Electric Dragon at 5:57 AM PST - 121 comments

This game is about two lovers named January and September. No, wait; it’s about a group of people who don’t believe in the sky. No, it’s about a pantheon of scientific disciplines. Or maybe it’s about an ancient beast who knew exactly when it was going to die, and how. It’s about a place. A place called Looming. [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 2:41 AM PST - 27 comments

July 5

"Living under capitalism, I like learning to feel comfortable with activity that does not result in success — since non-success is the norm. Trying your best and making it is not the norm — it’s propaganda. Of course I play with notions of hype, too... The entire Comatonse website is a sarcastic hype-engine, sprawling forever, overwhelming the viewer with nothingness." - Terre Thaemlitz, AKA DJ Sprinkles [more inside]
posted by koeselitz at 11:34 PM PST - 27 comments

Year On Earth breaks it down, explaining the complicated mechanics involved in trying to determine how long a year really is, why seasons and ice ages happen, and how not all years are created equal.
posted by loquacious at 10:16 PM PST - 22 comments

San Francisco-based DJ Earworm is best known for his end-of-year "United State of Pop" Billboard top 25 mashups: 2007, 2008, 2009. But in the "off season" he continues to mash popular songs into fun concotions. His latest, "Like, OMG Baby" is a reinvention of Justin Bieber's "Baby," and was shown at Wembley Stadium in London for Capital FM’s 2010 Summertime Ball , where all fifteen of the artists featured on the track performed on June 6th. His official website has videos and free, downloadable MP3's. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 9:57 PM PST - 27 comments

Is it possible to have too many books? Legendary Sci-Fi Author and Crankypants Harlan Ellison thinks so (or maybe his wife) so it's time for the Third Harlan Ellison Book Purge Sale! 289 items of varying levels of collectability, ranging in price from US$4 to US$1200. The eBay-averse Ellisons are only accepting mail orders (mailing deadline already past, sorry) or phone orders via a dedicated phone number at specified times, starting July 6th (today for most of you) at 9:00AM Pacific Time, your timezone will vary. All the offerings and instructions are in this pdf (also in semi-readable webpage form here). Mrs. Ellison is standing by!
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:11 PM PST - 61 comments

With their no-frills, earnestly deadpan delivery, excellent pitch and diction, crisp guitar work, impeccable rhythm and sweet harmonies, Fiona and Emily are sure to become your favorite classic rock cover band. Honky Tonk Woman, Pinball Wizard, Ticket To Ride, Surfin' USA, House of the Rising Sun, Help, Johnny B. Goode, and last but certainly not least, I Am the Walrus. Woooooooooo!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:14 PM PST - 55 comments

"My web site will encourage kindness among those who support it, and creative punishment for those who do not." Mefi's own Shepherd "got a little carried away" creating his blog's under construction placeholder page. The result is a terrifying dystopic epic. [via mefi projects]
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 7:59 PM PST - 40 comments

The people of 4chan are at it again. They are now trying to hijack the voting for Justin Bieber's next touring destination. Their goal: to send him to North Korea. There are now almost half a million votes to send Bieber to the secretive communist nation.
posted by reenum at 7:54 PM PST - 84 comments

“I was thinking about those cow paths while watching Wimbledon this year.” —What the grass begins to tell us about how the game of tennis has changed in the past 30 years.
posted by kipmanley at 7:47 PM PST - 24 comments

"The Great Housing Bubble cultivated a gentility of entitlement, a sordid societal residue, a system of reliance, a conviction among people that they may possess anything they wish just because; deserving without earning; Grace." The Irvine Housing Blog has been documenting the housing bubble in Southern California since 2006. Highlights include an analysis of why "the California economy is dependent upon Ponzi borrowers." Now, as the term "strategic default" (discussed previously here and here) continues to trend upward , the stars of Bravo Network's reality television series The Real Housewives of Orange County are confronting realities of a different sort including bankruptcy, short sales and loan modifications. Discussion boards are filling up with legal talk concerning recourse vs. non-recourse loans, 2nd and 3rd lien holders and the prospects of settling 2nd lien debt at 4 cents on the dollar. Given the decreasing societal stigma associated with the issue of strategic default, many are speculating that this trend is in fact acting as an economic stimulus of a different kind
posted by FuturisticDragon at 7:45 PM PST - 19 comments

Listen to some great contemporary orchestrated classical Persian tunes. [more inside]
posted by clueless22 at 7:42 PM PST - 12 comments

Planck telescope reveals ancient cosmic light. "The picture is the first full-sky image from Europe's Planck telescope which was sent into space last year to survey the oldest light in the cosmos. It took the 600m-euro observatory just over six months to assemble the map. It shows what is visible beyond the Earth to instruments that are sensitive to light at very long wavelengths - much longer than what we can sense with our eyes." [more inside]
posted by homunculus at 5:09 PM PST - 30 comments


Big Bang, Big Boom, by Blu. A beautiful, extremely impressive stop motion depiction of evolution brought to life on walls, streets, beaches, and everything in between. (Previously, and other films Fantoche, and MUTO.) [more inside]
posted by wander at 2:49 PM PST - 19 comments



How Goldman Sachs gambled on starving the world's poor - and won This was hinted at last August and in 2008
Merrill Lynch's spokesman said: "Huh. I didn't know about that." He later emailed to say: "I am going to decline comment." Deutsche Bank also refused to comment. Goldman Sachs were a little more detailed in their response: they said "serious analyses... have concluded index funds did not cause a bubble in commodity futures prices", offering as evidence a single statement by the OECD.
World Hunger Facts 2010
posted by adamvasco at 1:58 PM PST - 99 comments

Argentina has been eliminated from The World Cup, but that doesn't mean we aren't free to enjoy some quotes from the always quotable Diego Maradona. For example, after Argentina qualified for the finals in South Africa, after looking like they would not make it, he said "To those who did not believe: now suck my d**k - I'm sorry ladies for my words - and keep on sucking it. I am either white or black. I will never be grey in my life. You treated me as you did. Now keep on sucking d**ks. I am grateful to my players and to the Argentinian people. I thank no one but them. The rest, keep on sucking d**ks."
posted by Keith Talent at 12:53 PM PST - 85 comments

Research by an international team led by staff at the ORAU has mapped out an accurate chronology of the kings of ancient Egypt using radiocarbon analysis of short-lived plant remains from the region. The research has now been published in the journal Science (18 June, 2010). [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 12:03 PM PST - 7 comments

Large Hadron Collider as pop-up book. Voyage to the Heart of Matter by Anton Radevsky and Emma Sanders uses cutting-edge pop-up-book technology to explicate the Large Hadron Collider. (At Ars Technica; at Wired.)
posted by joeclark at 11:33 AM PST - 4 comments

"Scream" a video by aspiring DIY pop-star (and ostensible straight person) Sky Smith. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 11:18 AM PST - 30 comments

"Young Bert Stern was already one of the leading fashion photographers of the 1950's when he resolved to shoot his first film before he was thirty. He made it, with two years to spare. The result, Jazz on a Summer's Day, is a luminously breezy film that brings the rich color palette of Vogue or Harper's Bazaar of those years into the world of the documentary cinema." [more inside]
posted by carsonb at 11:00 AM PST - 19 comments

Pioneer One is an original series from the writer and director of The Lionshare. In one sense, it is an experiment in crowdfunded "television", beginning with a $6000 KickStarter budget. In another sense, it is an experiment in using a peer-to-peer distribution model (i.e., VODO's "DISCO"). The show's pilot, released two weeks ago, which can be downloaded or streamed, has been a huge success; is currently the best-seeded show on BitTorrent, and already has had well over 1 million downloads. [more inside]
posted by tybeet at 9:07 AM PST - 32 comments

An AWESOME collection of sci-fi illustrations by the prolific Shigeru Komatsuzaki (1915-2001), whose fantastic work appeared on plastic model kit boxes and in magazines and picture books in the 1960s to 1970s. via [more inside]
posted by Monkeymoo at 8:48 AM PST - 18 comments

The fairy tales of robots... Tarboy, an extremely appealing little animation, brought to you from Down Under by James and Hania Lee. With quite a nice soundtrack available for free download. [more inside]
posted by Samizdata at 8:13 AM PST - 12 comments


An unusual lip sync performance. (SLYT)
posted by josher71 at 7:32 AM PST - 71 comments

Photographers Dominic Nahr and Moises Saman have both beeninvited to join the prestigious photo agency Magnum (as nominees).
posted by chunking express at 6:46 AM PST - 26 comments

Should you ever find yourself and the victim in your underwear when tragedy strikes—Super Sexy CPR & Super Sexy Abdominal Thrusts.
posted by Toekneesan at 6:37 AM PST - 34 comments


"Free Repair" is a project by Swiss artist Roland Roos, who traveled through Europe for over two years to repair broken, displaced or damaged things in the public space - without an assignment, but also without asking for permission. He documented his endeavor with photographs. (Coral Cached Link)
posted by starzero at 4:28 AM PST - 25 comments

“I like to think that at best the interview becomes something like the unaccountable experience of talking to oneself in a mirror.” - Michael Silverblatt, Host of Bookworm on KCRW interviewed by Sarah Fay for The Believer. All twenty years of Bookworm archives can be heard here
posted by minifigs at 3:18 AM PST - 6 comments

July 4

Coma
Friday Flash Fun!
(disclaimer: not Friday)
posted by Bonzai at 9:20 PM PST - 30 comments

"I know Darth Vader's really got you annoyed, but remember: if you kill him then you'll be unemployed...." ♫ (ML-Weird-YT)
posted by zarq at 8:10 PM PST - 24 comments

Burundi's election, in three acts. It was literally no surprise that Burundi’s president Pierre Nkurunziza won reelection on Monday. He was, after all, the only candidate. [more inside]
posted by lullaby at 7:17 PM PST - 5 comments

World Cup is it over yet? 'cuz this is not going to end well.
posted by HuronBob at 6:53 PM PST - 69 comments

Fifteen years ago this week, programmer Ron Britvich launched version 1.0 of Active Worlds. Started as an autonomous project of Worlds, Inc. (a spinoff of educational gamesmaker Knowledge Adventure), Active Worlds was one of the first and most ambitious attempts to create a 3D virtual community on the web. Built on the architecture of Britvich's Worlds Chat beta, Active Worlds debuted in the form of Alphaworld, a sunny green infinite plane open to public building. In its opening years Alphaworld experienced a land rush of construction, resulting in an anarchic starfish sprawl larger than the state of California. A sister company, Circle of Fire, was soon founded to craft additional themed hubs, and once individual ownership of worlds became possible the AW community spawned a veritable universe of hundreds of worlds. Although the company has seen its ups and downs since those heady times and its fortunes have slowly dwindled, the Active Worlds platform survives to this day. Look inside for a simple guide on how to log in to the (free) service, rundowns of the best worlds, links to essays analyzing the program's legacy, and other content summing up its venerable community. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 5:39 PM PST - 18 comments

BBS Documentary is now online to watch for free. Watch all 8 heartwarming, hilarious parts of (mefite) Jason Scott's doc here, under a Creative Commons license! (long long ago previously)
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 5:35 PM PST - 34 comments

For your 4th of July enjoyment: 10 Exceedingly Patriotic American Comic Heroes. Given the overlap between the Golden Age of superheroes and the beginning of WWII it should be no suprise that there are so many patriotically themed superheroes. Probably the first was The Shield ("G-Man Extraordinary"), who eventually faded away to be an occasional character in Archie comics, followed by the revolutiionary war themed Minute Man. But the most enduring of all would be Joe Simon and Jack Kirby's creation Captain America, whose first comic sold just under a million copies and featured Cap doing the most patriotic thing of all: Punching Adolf Hitler in the jaw.
posted by Artw at 2:46 PM PST - 37 comments

When a person graduates high school as one of the top students, all sorts of grand predictions are made for the person's future. But how many of them end up doing the things predicted of them? The Buffalo News did a feature in 2007 on what the top students in the Buffalo area from 1987 ended up doing after high school. Some of them have done remarkable things, while others have made their mark in smaller ways, all are interesting in their own way.
posted by reenum at 2:23 PM PST - 57 comments


"The Declaration of Independence in American," by H.L. Mencken. "When things get so balled up that the people of a country got to cut loose from some other country, and go it on their own hook, without asking no permission from nobody, excepting maybe God Almighty, then they ought to let everybody know why they done it, so that everybody can see they are not trying to put nothing over on nobody." Why we did what we did. In American, so everyone can understand.
posted by John of Michigan at 1:05 PM PST - 26 comments


Entanglement. A flash game: rotate tiles to make the longest line. [more inside]
posted by maxwelton at 12:44 PM PST - 23 comments

John Milbank and Katherine Pickstock are interviewed about Radical Orthodoxy [more inside]
posted by superiorchicken at 12:40 PM PST - 32 comments



Internet Relay Chat (IRC) has been around since 1988, and discussed several times on metafilter. It has been used as a communication medium, a news source, and now, as a programming language.
posted by grandsham at 9:16 AM PST - 68 comments

A movie theater experience absolutely anywhere! Take it on a long commute, on the plane, or even on a camping trip.
posted by gman at 8:01 AM PST - 84 comments

"1945-1998" is a multimedia artwork by Isao Hashimoto that documents over 2000 nuclear explosions -- mostly tests -- on earth since the closing days of World War II. It starts slowly, but give it time, because it ends up looking like the 4th of July. [more inside]
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:29 AM PST - 54 comments


In Sometimes Making Something leads to Nothing (video), the artist Francis Alys pushes a block of ice through Mexico City until it melts.
In When Faith Moves Mountains, (video) he convinces 500 Peruvian students to move a huge sand dune a few feet.
He walks through Mexico City waving a handgun and he drizzles green paint in Palestine.
Also, he walks into tornados (video).
The Tate Modern opens an exhibition on Francis Alys.
posted by vacapinta at 3:22 AM PST - 25 comments

The Elvis World Cup, a competition for Elvis impersonators, takes place in Cardiff this weekend. Some say that if impersonators keep increasing at the rate they are today, by 2020 one in four people on the planet will be an Elvis impersonator. Swedish Elvis. Chinese Elvis. Jewish Elvis. Lady Elvis. Black Elvis. Lesbian Elvis. Child Elvis. Mexican Elvis. The King, an impersonator who covers the songs of dead people in an Elvis stylee.
posted by mippy at 1:03 AM PST - 17 comments

July 3

Western Tour 1981. (Prev; via.)
posted by jjray at 10:41 PM PST - 16 comments

They were one of history’s greatest teams. But by the late 2000s, Pro Vercelli were entrenched in the lower leagues, their glorious past forgotten. Until one day, a man bought a video game. Read the uplifting saga of a small-town Italian club, an unknown American manager, triumph, betrayal, passion, and several extremely good recipes, from start to finish [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 6:31 PM PST - 26 comments

The use of movable type in China is now a rare business. Invented in China by Bi Sheng during the Song Dynasty, movable type was created as a system to print lengthy Buddhist scripture. This traditional method has mostly been replaced by offset and digital printing, but lately, there has been discussion about collecting these existing artifacts and setting up printing museums or digitizing the complete fonts.
posted by netbros at 4:48 PM PST - 10 comments


Stephen Fry on "What I wish I'd known when I was 18" (30 minute video; transcript) [more inside]
posted by rollick at 2:58 PM PST - 106 comments


Andrew Garfield is the new movie Spiderman, meaning despite internet campaigns and some lukewarm support from Stan Lee we'll never see this: Donald Glover as Spider-Man. Meanwhile the much delayed (and somewhat insane sounding) Spider-Man musical still stumbles on.
posted by Artw at 2:36 PM PST - 46 comments

Was Obama's decision to invade Afghanistan a mistake? Michael Steele, chair of the RNC seems to think so. Republicans and Democrats alike are irked and confused by his comments.
posted by justkevin at 2:32 PM PST - 128 comments


(NSFW) Don’t act gay when acting in gay porn? Escort/exotic dancer Devon Hunter describes his experience signing up to “act” in gay porn for Sean Cody, a label specializing in young, trim, hairless guys. But hey – don’t act gay while you’re having gay sex! “ ‘So you guys don’t like gay guys, then?’ ‘No! No, it’s not that. It’s just that straight guys sell better.’ [...N]ow I was suddenly suspicious that I was being paired with [performer Fuller] so that I could be ‘the lucky gay guy’ to bottom for such a hot, straight stud.” It’s only one side of the story, of course, and manifestly NSFW.
posted by joeclark at 10:42 AM PST - 122 comments

La Central de Abasto de la Ciudad de México "sprawls across a 327 hectare site on the eastern edge of the D.F., dwarfing fellow wholesale food markets such as Hunt’s Point (24 hectares), Tsukiji (23 hectares), or even the massive Rungis, outside Paris (232 hectares)." [more inside]
posted by SpringAquifer at 9:13 AM PST - 3 comments

Saturday morning... Mimosa anyone? How about getting a little buzz and do some wafflizing. Don't drink? Go traditional. Chicken & waffles? Head over to Roscoe's!
posted by shockingbluamp at 8:28 AM PST - 33 comments

I presume it is your intention to start upon a Vaudeville career. How to Enter Vaudeville: A Complete Illustrated Course of Instruction by Frederick LaDelle. [more inside]
posted by .kobayashi. at 8:18 AM PST - 17 comments

Ever wonder what reporters, editors, and producers discuss when shooting the breeze?

#5074
Reporter after pretending to be sympathetic to union official taking a $2 pay cut: "Wow, I'm so two-faced I scare myself."

posted by pyrex at 7:54 AM PST - 14 comments

Silly old Grace Jones is, what, now -- 62? You remember her. Yeah, but how about recalling this -- her 'Walking in the Rain'? Remember that? Just a copy, a bad one. Of a bad song, by eighties New Wave droners Flash and the Pan. Yecch. Songwriter? Diminutive George Young, there with the Chinese eyes and cigar. Born in Scotland, he was taken with music and especially the British invasion when he was a teen. Earlier, he was a guitarist for the mid-sixties group The Easybeats, who recorded an absolute classic, 'Friday on My Mind,' which he co-wrote. He's still the short one there, incidentally. David Bowie famously covered it, on Pin-ups. Anyway, his folks moved to Australia while he was still in his teens, which in parts explains why the Easybeats are considered the greatest sixties group from 'down under.' Hey, who knew? And who knew this? George's little brothers did even better than he did, Rock n' Roll wise.
posted by toma at 5:40 AM PST - 58 comments

July 2

Screenwriters find work is dwindling. While screen writers conferences are still enthusiastically marketed all over the country, and eagerly reported on, the working reality for screenwriters these days, is that work is growing ever more scarce. 'This week the Writers Guild of America, West reported that while earnings for screenwriters have bounced back to pre-strike levels' (2007–2008 Writers Guild of America strike), 'there is a lot less work going around: employment has fallen 11% in the last three years, with 226 fewer screenwriters working in 2009 than 2006, the year before the 100-day walkout and the lowest level in at least six years.' '"Except for current A-list writers, the picture is as bleak as I've ever seen it," said former Writers Guild President Dan Petrie Jr.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 6:34 PM PST - 244 comments

So.. right. You've been enjoying the new IT Crowd episodes but you need more. For a bit of Friday fun, check out the IT Crowd Game! [more inside]
posted by purephase at 5:49 PM PST - 48 comments

FOX Chicago News runs a story that suggests closing down public libraries as a means of fixing the state's ongoing budget issues. The Public Library Commissioner responds.
posted by casarkos at 4:10 PM PST - 77 comments

The Swedish Chef makes Pöpcørn Shrimp. With predictable, but very funny, results. Just so this isn't a SLYT post, here is the Muppets being patriotic (from a few years ago, but still funny and timely).
posted by cerebus19 at 3:51 PM PST - 45 comments


Debt buyers have become a multi-billion dollar industry. They buy old debts and then litigate in an effort to collect with little or no evidence. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 3:29 PM PST - 18 comments

We've talked about Mariano Rivera's cutter before. Now you can see why batters find this pitch is so devastating through the magic of a video based on Pitch f/x data.
posted by maxwelton at 3:25 PM PST - 35 comments

Tibetans May Be Fastest Evolutionary Adapters Ever. "A group of scientists in China, Denmark and the U.S. recently documented the fastest genetic change observed in humans. According to their findings, Tibetan adaption to high altitude might have taken just 3,000 years. That's a flash, in terms of evolutionary time, but it's one that's in dispute."
posted by homunculus at 3:17 PM PST - 12 comments

The story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin is best known to us from Robert Browning's versified account, here presented in an animated version and here depicted in stained glass. This article from the Fortean Times discusses possible factual bases for the story [hattip: BoingBoing] and this page collects similar accounts from other places.
posted by Joe in Australia at 2:42 PM PST - 11 comments

On July 1st, the US Department of Health and Human Services launched the website Healthcare.gov to explain changes that will occur by 2014 because of healthcare reform. It describes the reforms, and also suggests options for those who need insurance. Meanwhile, there are 80 signatures on a congressional petition by Rep. Steve King (R-IA) to repeal the bill via the House. The petition was started with the support of the Heritage Foundation.
posted by mccarty.tim at 2:28 PM PST - 26 comments

Animals as spiritual, and the role of animals in spirituality. "Some religious leaders welcome pets to worship services, memorialize them at death and discuss them as spiritual beings without distinction from humanity" ... "Factory farming, green living among topics sparking discussion." [more inside]
posted by longsleeves at 1:31 PM PST - 20 comments

On the day that John Adams thought would be celebrated as the birth of the United States of America, the Library of Congress reveals that in an original draft of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson referred to "Our fellow subjects," not "Our fellow citizens."
posted by TrarNoir at 12:18 PM PST - 65 comments

70 years ago today, the Arandora Star was torpedoed and sunk off the coast of Ireland by Commander Günther Prien, famous for sinking the HMS Royal Oak at Scapa Flow. Prien had taken its grey livery to mean the Arandora Star was an armed merchant ship. Instead, it was carrying Italian and German internees to be held in Canada for the duration of the war. [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns at 11:28 AM PST - 25 comments

The horror of Gallagher
posted by Artw at 11:01 AM PST - 253 comments

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) have released their latest models/scenarios ("based on several simplifying assumptions") of the BP spill's impact on coastlines [more inside]
posted by griphus at 10:53 AM PST - 24 comments

The ISS Progress 38 cargo carrier was launched to bring supplies to the International Space Station. The unmanned Russian vessel has experienced problems attempting to dock with the station and has now disappeared from view, spinning uncontrollably.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 10:40 AM PST - 43 comments


Where Is the Best Throne in New York? This year, two bathrooms in the city — the one in Bryant Park and the one at the Muse Hotel — have been nominated for the best bathrooms in the country. New York has yet to make it to the winner’s circle in the nine years that the Cincinnati-based Cintas Corporation has run the contest. Any restroom in the United States that is open to the public is eligible. Last year, the loo in the Shoji Tabuchi Theater in Branson, Mo., earned top honors. But this year, New York City has a chance to flush the competition, which will be determined by popular vote. [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 9:27 AM PST - 23 comments

“The only place to see an aurochs [sic] in nature these days? A cave painting. The enormous wild cattle that once roamed the European plains have been extinct since 1627, when the last survivor died in a Polish nature reserve. But this could soon change thanks to the work of European preservationists who are hoping they can make the great beast walk again.” [more inside]
posted by Think_Long at 8:58 AM PST - 53 comments

Lobster dogs
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:39 AM PST - 31 comments

(E)nter the realm of the Dragon
(I)nstructions
(L)ist Warriors
(Q)uit back to BBS

Your choice, warrior? [E]:_ [more inside]
posted by 256 at 7:37 AM PST - 72 comments

A Nuclear Fireworks Show over Hawaii: With the 4th of July approaching, what could be a more fitting tribute to the American spirit than this awesome pyrotechnical display seen over Hawaii in 1962, when America detonated a 1.45 megaton hydrogen bomb in outer space? Especially considering the circumstances. On the very same day that he announced the discovery of the massive radiation belt surrounding the Earth that now bears his name, American scientist James Van Allen joined the American military in planning a secret project (code named: "Starfish Prime") to see if they could destroy it. According to science historian James Fleming, this all-American project respresents "the first occasion I've ever discovered where someone discovered something and immediately decided to blow it up."
posted by saulgoodman at 7:29 AM PST - 40 comments

The Life of Shelton Doyle Blalock, Everyday American. Doyle Blalock was a son, submariner, husband, mailman, father, gardener, rockhound, artisan, grandfather, and friend: a regular guy with a remarkable life. What makes him particularly remarkable, though, is that his grandson, Lance Dean, created such a thorough record of his life to share with the internet, from Doyle's childhood in Golden Grove, Mississippi, his service as a sailor during World War II, his return to Mississippi and marriage to the lovely Lodena Alexander, to his post-retirement vocation as an artisan, creating "sand paintings" and demonstrating his art. (Links are to images out of context. See the first link for descriptions.) [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 6:48 AM PST - 4 comments

The Killer in the Pool. Outside Magazine's in-depth feature on the Sea World trainer death earlier this year, and the history of the business of killer whales. A Whale of a Business is a Frontline resource page on orcas and captivity, and includes a section on Sea World, and one on the debate over capturing/releasing orcas and other whales and dolphins...which includes an excerpt on the danger to trainers--and inhumane captivity conditions--published shortly after Tilikum's first fatal incident in 1991. Previously.
posted by availablelight at 6:32 AM PST - 34 comments

Last week, the UK government announced an end to 'vanity websites in Government', calling for 600 government websites to be closed down, and 50% budget cuts for those which remain. Six days later, the government launches PR exercise website http://yourfreedom.hmg.gov.uk

Also recently launched was Your Freedumb to enable citizens easily see some of the more 'interesting' suggestions on Your Freedom. For example, repeal the Second Law of Thermodynamics, abolish Facebook and Twitter sites and repeal Sod's Law.
posted by i_cola at 6:29 AM PST - 28 comments

Who are they? Jenny Turner looks inside the Institute of Ideas, one of Britain's strangest think tanks, composed largely of entryist Trotskyites turned radical libertarians.
posted by WPW at 5:40 AM PST - 40 comments

In accordance with Executive Order 10865 of 1960 & DoD Directive 5220.6 of 1992 (original PDF), the Department of Defense has published the reasons for granting or turning down applications for Clearance by 444 Defense contractor personnel in 2010 (so far).
posted by scalefree at 5:40 AM PST - 34 comments

There are only 10 days of the World Cup left. The World Cup Final is on Sunday 11th July at 19:30 GMT. Today sees the start of the Quarter Finals, and with only 8 teams left, this is when the pressure really starts. A brief Preview of the Quarter finals: [more inside]
posted by marienbad at 3:53 AM PST - 349 comments

Pleix makes a great case against the death penalty. [more inside]
posted by iloveit at 1:11 AM PST - 97 comments

July 1

Cardon Copy takes the vernacular of self-distributed flyers and tear-offs... redesigning them, overpowering their message with a new visual language. [via]
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 8:38 PM PST - 50 comments

A Sunday in Hell. The 1977 documentary film covering the famously treacherous Paris-Roubaix bicycle road race.
posted by knave at 8:15 PM PST - 33 comments

Dead Wrestler Of The Week. Every week, the Masked Man, Deadspin's pro wrestling correspondent, honors the sport's fallen and examines their legacies — famous and obscure alike. [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:56 PM PST - 22 comments

Podcaster, musician, atheist, skeptic and comic raconteur George Hrab is releasing his latest solo album Trebuchet through CD Baby and free mp3 download [65MB].* Hrab talks about Trebuchet with Swoopy and Derek on the Skepticality podcast, on the Token Skeptic podcast [46MB MP3], and with Karen Stollznow on the Point of Inquiry podcast. [more inside]
posted by McLir at 6:56 PM PST - 4 comments

TVOntario's Bits and Bytes: the world of personal computers explained in 1983 by Billy Van and Luba Goy. [more inside]
posted by Crane Shot at 6:38 PM PST - 24 comments

As of 1 July 2010, broadband is now a legal right in Finland. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 6:32 PM PST - 70 comments


Starting today, Starbucks is offering free wifi in all of their US and Canadian stores. This has computer security folks a little edgy, since it could allow hackers and computer miscreants new opportunities to steal the data of unsuspecting computer users, and prompted Steve Gibson, computer security guru, to advise people to "just be afraid. Be very afraid." This applies to people who use laptops, wifi enabled cellphones and pdas. But there are ways to protect yourself. [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 4:40 PM PST - 93 comments

For any who lament not being able to visit the Toonseum's Art Of Akira exhibit (previously), there is a good-sized Flickr set of cells and backgrounds available to explore.
posted by hippybear at 3:57 PM PST - 14 comments

Beached Az - the adventures of a whale stranded on a New Zealand beach [official site]
posted by UbuRoivas at 2:50 PM PST - 38 comments

W.S. Merwin is your new poet laureate.
posted by xowie at 2:39 PM PST - 53 comments

Parasites may affect brain function: Toxoplasmosis is a famous example. Now researchers have proposed that country-by-country differences in IQ can be explained, in part, by parasite burden.
posted by jjray at 2:14 PM PST - 44 comments

The Great Escape From Slavery of Ellen and William Craft (single link Smithsonian magazine) She dressed as a man, and he posed as her slave. And it worked.
posted by bearwife at 1:38 PM PST - 23 comments

Pop-Fiction sets out to test some of the rarest video game urban legends.
posted by aftermarketradio at 1:38 PM PST - 36 comments

This year 45 Jains have already embraced Santhara.
Voluntary death by starvation also know as Sallekhana.
Fasting is very common in Jain spirituality. It's not suicide,”... “You have to understand that for us death is full of excitement.” Jain's produce some of the most beautiful stone carved temple art in the world.
posted by adamvasco at 1:34 PM PST - 59 comments

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has shut down nine websites in connection with an ongoing crackdown on internet film and TV piracy. The sites seized are Movieslinks.tv, Planetmoviez.com, ZML.com, Thepiratecity.org, Filespump.com, TVShack.net, Now-Movies.com, NinjaThis.net, and NinjaVideo.net. The feds also seized related Paypal accounts and bank accounts as part of the operation. Ninjavideo was the most notorious of the group, and its admin, Phara, went so far as to record a manifesto in praise of internet piracy.
posted by Pastabagel at 1:29 PM PST - 197 comments

Have you ever been intrigued by the arcane rules of NBA finance? Then you need Larry Coon's amazingly comprehensive NBA Salary Cap FAQ. [more inside]
posted by equalpants at 1:17 PM PST - 11 comments

April 26, 1979, Andy Kaufman performed for a sold-out crowd in Carnegie Hall, who were welcomed to their seat by a "press kit" containing a bag of jelly beans, a program and flier for the show, and other copied material, supposedly put together by Andy's mother. The show starting off with an impersonation of Tony Clifton and ending by taking the audience of 2,800 out for milk and cookies. About 10 months later on February 20, 1981, Kaufman hosted an episode of Fridays, ABC's attempt to duplicate the success of NBC's Saturday Night Live. Instead of performing the show as rehearsed, he took the entire cast and crew, the studio audience and a nation of television viewers hostage. Video links and more details inside. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:54 PM PST - 30 comments

Wanted: Jonah Hex - on making a movie prop, and a little about actual Old West wanted posters.
posted by Artw at 10:50 AM PST - 43 comments

Why does Team Jacob always have to lose? Because Eclipse is a movie about rejecting adulthood, not just as a person but also as a culture. It's about rejecting adult relationships between men and women, but also between people of different races and between people from the city (like Victoria's army) and people from Forks. It's about never crossing boundaries, never leaving home.
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 10:46 AM PST - 222 comments

Mortgage financing giant Fannie Mae announces policy changes designed to encourage borrowers to "work with their servicers and pursue alternatives to foreclosure"...and threatens borrowers with new penalties for strategic default. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:43 AM PST - 44 comments

Paleontologists discover the skull of a massive predatory whale (Leviathan melvillei) in Peru. Discovery News presents this finding with the best of all possible illustrations. (via)
posted by The Whelk at 10:40 AM PST - 71 comments

Live on stage in Toledo, Ohio. (SLYT) 26 seconds that will make your day better.
posted by yiftach at 9:57 AM PST - 36 comments


Pope Benedict XVI has announced the establishment of a new Vatican department dedicated to tackling what he called 'a grave crisis in the sense of the Christian faith and the role of the Church." The Pontifical Council for the Promotion of New Evangelisation will (per Archbishop Vincent Nichols,) focus on countries "in which, even though the Christian Gospel has shaped an entire culture," secularism now reigns, in what the Pope termed an "eclipse of a sense of God." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:50 AM PST - 165 comments

For years, uneven cheese distribution has plagued Subway customers, but that will soon change. Today Subway sandwich shops will begin tessellating cheese slices on their sandwiches. [more inside]
posted by robstercraw at 8:39 AM PST - 158 comments

BP Slick Covers Dolphins and Whales. (YouTube) John L. Wathen, (MySpace Video) Hurricane Creekkeeper and Alabama environmental activist, flew over the oil slick area on June 21. This video documents a truly terrifying aerial tour of the BP oil disaster in the Gulf, with activist and journalist David Helvarg providing narration. More remarkable videos can be found on his YouTube channel.
posted by fourcheesemac at 8:20 AM PST - 70 comments



Grow It Eat It - food gardening videos courtesy of the University of Maryland. (Lots more on offer from them as well.)
posted by Wolfdog at 5:43 AM PST - 9 comments

A new movie based on Obama’s childhood in Indonesia has just been released in Jakarta. The film is based on a novel released just this year. Certain differences can be noted between the book and the movie – for example, a scene showing Obama praying in the direction of Mecca was dropped.
posted by micketymoc at 3:39 AM PST - 23 comments

How I Got Arrested and Abused at G20 in Toronto, Canada We are thirsty again; it's been 15 hours in police custody. Still 39 guys overcrowded. Getting very scary. Awake for around 30 hours. Had one sip of water and cheese bun. People are detained, kept cuffed in cages for 23 hours with insufficient food, water, hygiene, and space. Many of them just happened to be in the wrong part of Toronto and had no connection to the protest.
posted by Zarkonnen at 2:02 AM PST - 110 comments

Roger Ebert backpedals on his previous conviction that games can not be art. [more inside]
posted by Herschel at 1:30 AM PST - 205 comments

In February of 2008, Microsoft acquired the maker of the Sidekick, Danger Inc., for $500 million dollars and rolled the company into its Premium Mobile Experiences division, led by Roz Ho. The Sidekick retained a dedicated following after the merger despite some hiccups along the way. Twenty-six months after the acquisition, Microsoft unveiled the KIN One and KIN Two devices which would launch in May. The devices were backed by a huge and mildly controversial marketing push aimed at the young, hip social-networking addict niche. Reviews were generally negative and often cited needless complexity, software that was lacking basic functions and no support for third party applications. The devices ran a fork of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft's rewrite of their aging mobile operating system that had been rapidly losing ground to RIM, Apple and Google. Just seven weeks after launch, the KIN is dead. Engadget has some insight into the failure and the subsequent shake-up at Microsoft.
posted by cgomez at 12:12 AM PST - 98 comments