July 2012 Archives

July 31

languagehat looks back on ten years of Languagehat: I II III IV V VI VII VIII IX X.
posted by nangar at 11:49 PM PST - 28 comments

Gore Vidal, arguably one of america's greatest living post-war writers, died Tuesday at the age of 86. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 11:40 PM PST - 141 comments

Bored of Gmail? Why don't you try Outlook?
posted by vidur at 9:40 PM PST - 236 comments

Russian billionaire Milner's new physics prize is awarding nine scientists 3 million dollars each in its inaugural year. Aside from the size of the prize, it's different from the Nobel in physics in that it can be awarded to scientists whose ideas have not yet been verified by experiments. According to the Forbes article, the winners "can be groups of any size; scientists of any age; and there is no limit on how many prizes an individual can win." And soon the prize would be open to online nominations. [more inside]
posted by of strange foe at 8:50 PM PST - 18 comments

Have an extra $682 million lying around, taking up space? Want to wreak havoc unsuspecting crims? You could become Batman! [more inside]
posted by nickthetourist at 7:10 PM PST - 70 comments

James Salter's A Sport and a Pastime is one of those very rare novels that seems not so much to have been written as discovered. At its heart is a love story, an encounter, that transforms its relatively ordinary protagonists into beings around whom the entire cosmos shapes itself. The love story is delicate and ephemeral, put together out of bits and pieces, like a bird's nest. The vulnerable lovers tremble, in the most mundane circumstances, on the edge of catastrophe. Simply the way one of them moves across the room to meet the other seems miraculous and hazardous. Were they to become aware of themselves everything would be lost. But there is no danger of that. Oblivious, they tiptoe on a precipice. They do not and cannot know that their innocence cloaks them in a kind of divinity and infallibility. Actions and attitudes we expect to bring them down don't. They do things that seem so perfect, so poignant, without knowing they are doing anything at all. They arc beautifully across our path, and then vanish. - Michael Doliner (previously) [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 7:04 PM PST - 8 comments

The Umbrellas of Águenda
posted by IvoShandor at 6:41 PM PST - 3 comments


Bill Doss, co-founder of the seminal indie rock collective The Elephant Six Recording Company and member of classic lo-fi groups and projects such as Olivia Tremor Control, The Sunshine Fix, and the Powerpuff Girls: Heroes and Villains album passed away today at age 44. No cause of death was released. [more inside]
posted by Shadax at 4:15 PM PST - 52 comments

Maeve Binchy, Irish author, died at 72 yesterday. [more inside]
posted by jeather at 3:25 PM PST - 25 comments

In 1969, anthropologist Richard B.Lee wrote about his experience 'Eating Christmas in the Kalahari.' (PDF)
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:49 PM PST - 11 comments

Last May, Christopher Tolkien, a resident of the South of France since 1975, granted a rare interview to Le Monde. Naturally, the interview and article are in French. For those of us who don't read French, American ex-pat Sedulia Scott provides an English translation. [more inside]
posted by ob1quixote at 1:02 PM PST - 131 comments

A whole new level of Cosplay From the shut-up and take my money division of way kool comes this fan boy wet dream. With water driven rockets and a BB spittig Gatling gun this is sure to spice up the next Con you attend. Price (if you have to ask). I love Japan! YouTube Link with sound
posted by pdxpogo at 12:16 PM PST - 25 comments

Last week, the New Yorker published a (previously rejected) F. Scott Fitzgerald short story, "Thank You for the Light", written in 1936. The magazine has also made available "A Short Autobiography," in which Fitzgerald gave a chronology of his life in terms of alcoholic beverages imbibed. [more inside]
posted by obscurator at 12:06 PM PST - 16 comments

Both inside and outside the walls of Facebook, the story of social games has become one of dead geese and golden eggs, flatlined growth, formulaic games and shady practises. Many warned that the sector was slowing down, but sometimes giants need to fall. It needs to get bad enough before people start to really consider what's next... So what comes next?
posted by Artw at 11:54 AM PST - 61 comments

BuzzFeed's strategy . Jonah Peretti, a co-founder of the Huffington Post, later went on to found BuzzFeed, famous for it's linkbait lists. He recently wrote a company-wide memo touting the company's success and plans for the future.
posted by gwint at 11:17 AM PST - 20 comments


Paul Lockhart, author of the famous Mathematician's Lament, has a new book coming out called Measurement, which tries to discuss mathematics "as an artful way of thinking and living". Lockhart discusses his passion for math and motives for writing the book in this video.
posted by Rory Marinich at 10:48 AM PST - 17 comments

Disasterland [NSFW cartoons] is Mexican artist Rodolfo Loaiza's tribute to pop culture, fashion, animation, horror films and the undeniable attraction of celebrity, often in the form of twisted Disney juxtapositions. More at the artist's Flickr.
posted by laconic skeuomorph at 9:49 AM PST - 16 comments

The Naked World of Spencer Tunick (probably NSFW).
posted by feelinglistless at 9:36 AM PST - 34 comments

Here's a nifty realtime Olympic medal tracker that allows you to sort by rank, country, total, gold, silver, and bronze medals. Too obvious for you? There are plenty of alternatives: medals per capita ; medals by GDP per capita; number of athletes and billions of dollars GDP per medal (2008); and a discussion of alternative rankings with a sortable rankings table. There is also a booming business in predictions that take into account GDP per capita, population size, and other factors: FT; BBC. [more inside]
posted by googly at 8:32 AM PST - 23 comments

Fuck Paintings, by Betty Tompkins [NSFW] The large scale photorealistic paintings of heterosexual intercourse which Betty Tompkins made between 1969 and 1974 were practically unknown when they were exhibited together for the first time in New York in 2002. The idea of sex without a hint of modesty or mediation was too much to handle (nsfw) in a day and age when the word “hell” (not uttered on television until 1967) raised eyebrows and Penthouse was the scourge of morality for showing pubic hair (1969). It’s no surprise, then, that Tompkins originally titled her series Joined Forms in an earnest — albeit tongue-in-cheek — appeal to fit within the period [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 8:14 AM PST - 43 comments


Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Jr., aka Snoop Dogg, is furthermore to be referred to as Snoop Lion, after having a spiritual awakening in Jamaica. His next album will be reggae, as rap is no longer challenging to him.
posted by swift at 6:13 AM PST - 170 comments


Buttermilk the goat is very excited. All signs point to Buttermilk being an actual goat, and not a person.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 5:30 AM PST - 61 comments

The Mythical Rise of Asian Americans The model minority myth perpetuated by the Pew research is misleading. At its core, it contains a highly objectionable assumption that other minorities do not work hard enough to succeed. In addition, as others have eloquently argued, the topline numbers and statistics hide wide variance within the Asian American community itself. Finally, insistence on holding up Asian Americans’ “success” often serves as an excuse to overlook the very real challenges that they face.
posted by infini at 4:47 AM PST - 110 comments

You probably didn't know the name or face of New Zealand actor Jonathan Hardy, but you may recognise his voice: he was Dominar Rygel XVI in TV's Farscape. But did you know he was also an Academy Award-nominated scriptwriter? He died at his home in the NSW Southern Highlands on Sunday. [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 3:23 AM PST - 44 comments

Equestrian riders use what are essentially air bag vests, which immediately inflate when they fall from the saddle. They work much like a safety strap on a treadmill. The vest is attached to the saddle by a line, and when that line pulls free, it fires a CO2 cartridge that inflates the vest. Here's a video of one in action on a course, and here's a clearer view of one being inflated. [more inside]
posted by dbarefoot at 2:09 AM PST - 47 comments

July 30

English churches can be very picturesque. People have very strong opinions about their favorites. They can be colorfully decorated with painted walls,(previously) or filled with strange animals carvings! There is a complex architectural terminology devoted to the details of their construction. [more inside]
posted by winna at 10:29 PM PST - 13 comments

Molly Paxton, Carrie Figdor, and Valerie Tiberius have a new paper in Hypatia quantifying the gender gap in philosophy (pdf). [more inside]
posted by Jonathan Livengood at 10:27 PM PST - 51 comments

Tonight, for only the third time in Major League Baseball history, a player (Kendrys Morales of the Los Angeles Angels) hit two home runs in the same inning, one from each side of the plate. Morales' second home run of the inning was a grand slam, his first since the ill-fated events of 5/29/10, when he suffered a freak ankle injury jumping onto home plate in celebration of his game-winning hit, just as his career was really beginning to take off. Morales subsequently missed nearly two full seasons of baseball, returning just this year.
posted by The Gooch at 10:08 PM PST - 19 comments

During his tenure as Mayor of New York City, "public health autocrat" Michael Bloomberg has attempted to regulate trans fats, smoking and sugar-filled sodas. Now, he has a fresh target: moms who don't breastfeed. Beginning September 3, NYC hospitals participating in a new, voluntary program: Latch-On NYC (press release / posters / FAQ -pdf-), will make formula less accessible, to encourage moms of newborns to breastfeed instead of using formula. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 9:35 PM PST - 220 comments


Formula 1 powerhouse McLaren not only designs good cars, they've commissioned a series of YouTube cartoons featuring Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton, their current drivers. Episode 1, Episode 2, Episode 3
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:47 PM PST - 10 comments

The Castaway's Guide To Making A Home: What do people do when they're shipwrecked on a deserted isle?
posted by Chrysostom at 7:07 PM PST - 39 comments

Simple Desks: A frequently updated collection of beautifully minimal desks and workspaces, interspersed with occasional musings on minimalism, productivity, design and technology
posted by Egg Shen at 7:01 PM PST - 48 comments

By late May, more than ten million copies of E.L. James’s Fifty Shades trilogy, an erotic romance series about the sexual exploits of a domineering billionaire and an inexperienced coed, had been sold in the United States, all within six weeks of the books’ publication here. This apparently unprecedented achievement occurred without the benefit of a publicity campaign, formal reviews, or Oprah’s blessing, owing to a reputation established, as one industry analyst put it, “totally through word of mouth.” [Grey Area: How ‘Fifty Shades’ Dominated the Market]
posted by vidur at 6:46 PM PST - 101 comments

Quiltsrÿche Who needs dope licks when you have fussy cuts? Boo Davis's punk and metal inspired-quilts. This ain't your granny's rock-and-roll muslin. [more inside]
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 5:04 PM PST - 17 comments

Maritime Monday. (No NSFW images in this link, but some weeks there will be a random picture or two of a topless mer-person or sailor.)
posted by resurrexit at 4:19 PM PST - 11 comments

"The Heretic: For decades, the U.S. government banned medical studies of the effects of LSD. But for one longtime, elite researcher, the promise of mind-blowing revelations was just too tempting." [more inside]
posted by andoatnp at 3:31 PM PST - 113 comments

Moonrise Kingdom opens with Britten's Young Person's Guide to the Orchestra. Similar to Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf (a version narrated by David Bowie, part 1 with the character introductions), the Guide uses a narrator to identify the principal instruments. The movie closes with (non-plot spoilers): [more inside]
posted by CBrachyrhynchos at 2:08 PM PST - 32 comments

Like many other great American folk songs, She’ll be Comin’ Round the Mountain reaches us through the filter of both religious and secular movements. The music underneath the words has its original genesis in a spiritual sung originally by slaves and later popularized in the black churches of the south; the lyrics we know today – the version which came into the larger cultural vernacular and which spawned various children’s versions – was, originally, a protest song. [more inside]
posted by luriete at 12:54 PM PST - 36 comments




Bikinis that match book covers. Matchbook is a tumblr that features bikinis that unintentionally match the cover art of well known books.
posted by sweetkid at 10:55 AM PST - 33 comments

Is it possible to make a living in the arts? Meet the double jobbers.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:39 AM PST - 36 comments

Writer decides to walk for a week in a place where cars are the rule. [more inside]
posted by skepticallypleased at 10:15 AM PST - 98 comments

"Let’s Map Who Owes The Local Warlord Money": Meet An Urban Planner For Cities That Don't Yet Exist (via Small Wars Journal). [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:12 AM PST - 6 comments

Boolean Buddhas I started to combine multiple copies of the Buddha model with simple shapes, using boolean operations. [more inside]
posted by dubold at 9:03 AM PST - 24 comments


The Conversion of a Climate-Change Skeptic : Richard A. Muller is a physicist, teacher, and author. His popular "Physics for Future Presidents" course is available for free online (previously). Yet Muller has a more controversial side: Climate skeptic. But last year, his Koch-funded Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project confirmed global warming is real and today, an OpEd in the New York Times states that humans are almost entirely the cause. [more inside]
posted by gwint at 8:58 AM PST - 60 comments


RUN. HIDE. FIGHT. A PSA by The City of Houston released three days after the Aurora masacre.
posted by splatta at 6:41 AM PST - 214 comments

Scouting New York (previously) presents "The Filming Locations of Annie Hall," Part 1 and Part 2.
posted by griphus at 6:41 AM PST - 41 comments

Ever wonder what it would be like to experience what a firefighter sees? Here's a helmet cam of working inside a burning building. [slyt]
posted by quin at 5:31 AM PST - 64 comments

Chris Marker, director of La Jetée and Sans Soleil, among many others, and co-writer of 12 Monkeys, has died at age 91. English obit. French obit. Article on Chris Marker in the Guardian from 2002. Another appreciation from 2002. La Jetée on YouTube. Previously. Previouslier.
posted by chavenet at 5:11 AM PST - 68 comments

Neuro Images posts images of brains and art based on them. Some of them are beautiful; some of them are grotesque; some of them are confronting or sad (the complete series is here); and some of them are strangely reminiscent. (previously)
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:04 AM PST - 9 comments

July 29

Yesterday, July 29, 2012, saw a massive antinuclear protest, attended by young and old alike, in Tokyo. This video, and this one, too, (both well-edited and featuring English subtitles) bring you right into the center of the action, to get a feel for the energy that the movement is steadily gaining.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:25 PM PST - 112 comments

Meet Tony Disco.
posted by ocherdraco at 8:56 PM PST - 17 comments

This is a single-link YouTube post in which the Freebadge Serenaders, a "discount jazz" duo from Sacramento, play the Cars' classic "Just What I Needed" on washboard, cowbell, banjo, and kazoo, live on local NBC affiliate KCRA. That is all it is.
posted by escabeche at 8:39 PM PST - 33 comments

Five months ago, she vowed to find him. It wasn’t the RCMP who could help, or even a Canadian. Instead, Ms. Smith turned to Gene and Sandy Ralston, an Idaho couple who zig-zag North America in their 32-foot motor home, helping recover bodies from lakes and rivers when authorities can’t, or won’t. They don't get paid, and in some years rack up nearly 50,000 kilometres. They do it simply because people ask.
posted by emcat8 at 7:34 PM PST - 25 comments

Long before the David Cronenberg film (NSFW: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), before even the publication of the novel, Harley Cokeliss directed Crash! (1, 2) - a short film adapted from the story in J.G. Ballard's The Atrocity Exhibition, starring Ballard himself and Gabrielle Drake (sister of Nick Drake). (previously) [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 6:58 PM PST - 23 comments

A Guide to Writing Sherlockian-Tea Habits. In which EnigmaticPenguin (of death) schools fanfiction authors in correct English tea theory and practice. Follow up: Biscuits.
posted by The Whelk at 5:10 PM PST - 158 comments

Lupe Ontiveros , the excellent, perpetually under-appreciated character actress, died Thursday at the age of 69. [more inside]
posted by Nibbly Fang at 2:01 PM PST - 28 comments

Luke Rudkowski of WeAreChange breaks down WRC Correspondent Julio Rausseo’s experience at the Chicago Union Station, 1 week after releasing a video exposing TSA checkpoints being setup there. (This was posted on Reddit yesterday, but wearechange.org's server crashed for a while (I think)...so here it is, in all its wtf glory.)
posted by pjmoy at 1:45 PM PST - 47 comments


Garbage Gods Part 2 : ionustron has posted a follow-up to his post from last year regarding his twist-tie figurines. More images from this new set can be found here.
posted by luvcraft at 12:51 PM PST - 4 comments

Flying Lasers Reveal Buried Historical Structures (pictures) [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 12:42 PM PST - 23 comments

The ruins of empire: Asia's emergence from western imperialism Moreover, a narcissistic history – one obsessed with western ideals, achievements, failures and challenges – can only retard a useful understanding of the world today. For most people in Europe and America, the history of the present is still largely defined by victories in the second world war and the long standoff with Soviet communism, even though the central event of the modern era, for a majority of the world's population, is the intellectual and political awakening of Asia and its emergence, still incomplete, from the ruins of both Asian and European empires. The much-heralded shift of power from the west to the east may or may not happen. But only neo-imperialist dead-enders will deny that we have edged closer to the cosmopolitan future the first generation of modern Asian thinkers, writers and leaders dreamed of – in which people from different parts of the world meet as equals rather than as masters and slaves, and no one needs to shoot elephants to confirm their supremacy.
posted by infini at 12:17 PM PST - 19 comments

Patton Oswalt’s Letters to Both Sides - Oswalt addresses "all of the comedians in the room" and "all of the gatekeepers" at Montreal’s Just For Laughs 2012 about living in a living in a "post-Louie world".
posted by Artw at 11:43 AM PST - 89 comments

Christoffer Relander creates multiple-exposure portrait photographs, crossing humans and nature to haunting effect.
posted by hippybear at 10:45 AM PST - 7 comments

NBC is being heavily criticized for its handling so far of the 2012 Summer Olympics. From delaying the broadcast of the opening ceremonies by four hours (and then having to endure terrible commentary) while the rest of world watched live, to cutting out a tribute to terror victims everywhere to not showing Michael Phelps' first medal attempt live (and then spoiling it on a news broadcast before the race actually aired). This is in addition to online viewers not being able to access live video online unless they have a cable subscription as well as problems with the actual stream. [more inside]
posted by triggerfinger at 10:41 AM PST - 301 comments

Poor Martian Manatee Hunter never gets any love from the mainstream. Deviantart contributor Joel Micah Harris has created a series of pictures of superheroes as manatees. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 9:46 AM PST - 19 comments

"Danny created a room where no one was afraid to speak, no one had to stick to their own specialism, no one was afraid of sounding stupid or talking out of turn. He restored us to the people we were before we made career choices – to when we were just wondering." Frank Cottrell Boyce writes about writing the London 2012 opening ceremony. (It's not the first time he's worked with Danny Boyle - they previously collaborated on the lovely children's film Millions.)
posted by mippy at 9:27 AM PST - 123 comments

UK Artist Jeremy Deller has recreated Stonehenge as a "...life-size replica...made as a fully operational bouncy castle" for the Olympics. [more inside]
posted by bibliogrrl at 9:25 AM PST - 32 comments

The Billy Taylor Trio, live at Storyville. In 1951 legendary bass player Charles Mingus sat in with the Billy Taylor trio for a live broadcast. Here is thirty minutes of the broadcast. [more inside]
posted by Gygesringtone at 8:56 AM PST - 8 comments

You remember the Humble Indie Bundle, (previously) and the Humble Holiday Bundle (previously)? The Humble Music Bundle is out. Following the same pay-what-you-want plan, featuring six albums. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:38 AM PST - 27 comments


July 28

"With respect to landscape design, art, and the quality of spectacle, the picturesque 1,000 acres of Gibbs Farm afford one of the most intriguing, tastefully presented, and well-thought-out private collections of site-specific sculpture of the modern era." - Sculpture Magazine [more inside]
posted by maxwelton at 11:21 PM PST - 16 comments

If the Body Parts of Individual People category or the List of Fictional Plants don't do it for you, you're sure to find something on Wikipedia's List of Lists or perhaps even the List of Lists of Lists. If none of that does the job, then give the List of Unusual Articles a try. (previously)
posted by 23 at 10:23 PM PST - 29 comments

This is powerful writing. "This isn't an essay or simply a woe-is-we narrative about how hard it is to be a black boy in America. This is a lame attempt at remembering the contours of slow death and life in America for one black American teenager under Central Mississippi skies. I wish I could get my Yoda on right now and surmise all this shit into a clean sociopolitical pull-quote that shows supreme knowledge and absolute emotional transformation, but I don't want to lie."—A piece by Kiese Laymon, an Associate Professor of English and co-director of Africana Studies at Vassar College. [more inside]
posted by Moody834 at 10:17 PM PST - 57 comments

The Top Ten: Writers Pick Their Favorite Books catalogs the top ten favorite books of over 140 major authors and growing, including Louis D. Rubin, Jim Harrison, David Foster Wallace, David Leavitt, Paul Auster, Michael Chabon, and many more. Here's the list of books rank-ordered by frequency and here are other lists compiled from the statistics.
posted by shivohum at 10:16 PM PST - 40 comments

Orlando, FL - 10 ac, 90K sq ft, 13 bed, 30 bath, 20 car garage, 3 pools, 2 tennis cts, bowling alley, skating rink - $100M [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 6:53 PM PST - 140 comments

Miles Kimball tells the history behind the Mormon church's close ties to the GOP through his twitter account. [more inside]
posted by scunning at 5:40 PM PST - 25 comments

Are professional writers going the way of milk deliverers, shoeshiners, and chimney sweeps? “I’ve been making culture professionally for 20 years, and going back to working on spec again seems to be a very retrograde step,” Morrison says. “But it’s something a lot of established writers are having to do.” The Globe and Mail asserts that there will be no professional writers in the future.
posted by xenophile at 2:28 PM PST - 121 comments

Four Micro-Essays on League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: 2009 (contains spoilers), a look at the concluding part of Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill's 3 part LoEG: Century series in which the league face off against a headline grabbing villain (extreme spoiler warning) and which spookily presaged some of last nights Olympic opening. Previous Moore and O'Neill. Obligatory annotations from Jess Nevins.
posted by Artw at 11:26 AM PST - 37 comments

Fall, Mortality, and the Machine: Tolkien and Technology From the beginnings of modern fantasy, in the work of Tolkien, technology has always been the enemy of the good life. But does it have to be that way?
posted by infini at 10:57 AM PST - 82 comments

Son. This is how you make a Ron Swanson quilt.
posted by pie ninja at 10:43 AM PST - 14 comments



Culture, delusions, and the early treatment of schizophrenia.
Greg Downey: Living in the prodrome, part 1, part 2. [more inside]
posted by nangar at 9:03 AM PST - 20 comments

Goddammit it, I wish I'd written this deliciously nail-on-the-head, brilliantly insightful and sweeping overview of American musico-cultural history, seasoned with heavy dollops of personal remembrances and observations that I identify with so much that it's almost scary. But alas, I didn't. Still, I'm really, really grateful that William Hogeland did: Coons! Freaks! Hillwilliams! : 200 Years of Roots-Rock Revival (a Memoir).
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:50 AM PST - 22 comments

Need some cuteness in your day? Teru Teru Bozu are small handmade dolls loosely resembling bald monks, which are traditionally made in Japan and hung up, to [allegedly] bring good weather. There's a cute song that goes along with the tradition. Want to make your own?
posted by thermonuclear.jive.turkey at 7:19 AM PST - 11 comments

[TRIGGERS]"Reddit's had a few threads about sexual assault victims, but are there any redditors from the other side of the story? What were your motivations? Do you regret it?" A thoughtful article on Jezebel with some excerpts from the thread and some excellent comments.
posted by the young rope-rider at 6:58 AM PST - 186 comments

With the approaching 45th anniversary of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Film School Rejects have taken the boring old original trailer and updated it as a contemporary summer blockbuster (other remixes come in Inception and Prometheus flavors). [more inside]
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:52 AM PST - 25 comments


Ever wonder what Stormtroopers do on their day off? Motocross. [more inside]
posted by quin at 6:08 AM PST - 8 comments

Should a photographer document or intervene? In the wake of the recording of a sex attack in India, The Guardian interviews several photojournalists who have experienced doubt and regret over their actions. [more inside]
posted by Magnakai at 3:18 AM PST - 105 comments

What happens when you mash up Cinderella, Disney songs, queer culture, and top 40 hits? This, apparently. [SLYT]

Warning for general ear-worminess. I'll be humming this all week.
posted by MeghanC at 3:07 AM PST - 12 comments

July 27

The Perfection of the Paper Clip - It was invented in 1899. It hasn’t been improved upon since. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:57 PM PST - 40 comments

You might have heard Mike Oldfield playing during the Olympic opening and wondered, "What! Why the heck would Danny Boyle want the Exorcist theme playing at the start of such a grand event!" Oldfield's kept a low profile for years, so you may not remember him as the man who literally launched Virgin Records, one of only three artists to ever knock his #1 record off the charts with another #1 record (the other two being Bob Dylan and the Beatles). But those teenage successes were merely the start of an astonishing career, one full of pop music and prog rock, sci-fi and New Age, film scores and classical orchestrations — not to mention a spot at the start of Kanye West's recent album. His magnum opus, Amarok, is an hour of astonishing sounds and shifting genres which must be heard to be believed. Too overwhelming? Well, there're [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 7:53 PM PST - 62 comments

Origami Yoda [more inside]
posted by stebulus at 7:07 PM PST - 8 comments

TextEditors.org: "the largest collection of text editor information on the web" (Because word processors are stupid and inefficient.) [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 6:51 PM PST - 123 comments


Abstract artist Ilya Bolotowsky is represented in quite a few museums. But a painting of his, Vertical Diamond, appeared in a more unusual location,, was snapped up for bargain price of $9.99 and was nearly recycled into pet paintings. A label on the back of the painting from the Weatherspoon Art Museum led the museum's registrars to dig into archived files and track some of the painting's history before it found itself in the bargain bin.
posted by PussKillian at 4:41 PM PST - 37 comments

The Caipirinha Appreciation Society podcast features underexposed Brazilian music of all styles, regions and time periods — from vintage sambas to modern blends. [more inside]
posted by Tom-B at 3:53 PM PST - 21 comments

Get More Out Of Google — in a recent study on student research skills, 3 out of 4 students couldn't perform a "well executed search" on Google. When the success of your term paper hangs in the balance, using Google effectively is crucial, but most students surprisingly just don't know how. Get that and more at Hack College, where you'll get 10 Tips from a Senior to an Incoming Freshman.
posted by netbros at 3:25 PM PST - 72 comments

Ariel [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 1:55 PM PST - 18 comments


The Google Cultural Institute is the portal for an effort to digitally preserve and present vital historical information using the latest web technologies. Highlights include the World Wonders Project, a geographical tour of UNESCO Heritage sites; Google Art Project (previously), curating 50,000 years of human cultural expression; the Palace of Versailles in 3D and a digital archive of the Dead Sea Scrolls (previously)
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 1:26 PM PST - 0 comments - Post a Comment


“I am gay, and I’m proud to be called a gay rapper, but it’s not gay rap. That’s not a genre. My goal is always to make songs that a gay dude or a straight dude can listen to and just think, This dude has swag.... The best thing a song can be called is good.” Rapper/producer Le1f, in a short bio article on Fader, which mentions Le1f being swept up with the "more outlandish" (as Fader writer Alex Frank puts it) House of LaDosha and Mykki Blanco. The Guardian has another piece on the rise of gay rappers, but the Amoeba blog was there first in 2008, covering a bit of the New Orleans sissies. More videos and music directly linked inside (and you can assume the music and videos are NSFW). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:29 PM PST - 16 comments


Urban skiing, courtesy of Finnish crew Nipwitz. Like skate videos with snow, ambient soundtrack, and a pinch of travelogue. Here is Murmanst Oblast and Sarajevo.
posted by oneirodynia at 11:13 AM PST - 13 comments

Now That's What I Call Drone: Vol. 1 - Drone ambient versions of top 40 pop songs. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by Theta States at 11:08 AM PST - 42 comments

"From the beginning of this present phase of the race problem in the South, I have been on record as opposing the forces in my native country which would keep the condition out of which this present evil and trouble has grown. Now I must go on record as opposing the forces outside the South which would use legal or police compulsion to eradicate that evil overnight. I was against compulsory segregation. I am just as strongly against compulsory integration."

"A Letter to the North," William Faulkner, LIFE Magazine, March 5th, 1956.
posted by griphus at 11:02 AM PST - 70 comments

One man's trash is another man's treasure — we've all heard the old adage, but Nelson Molina, a longtime sanitation worker in Manhattan, takes the saying to an entirely new level: a self-curated, full-fledged art gallery — from other people's trash. The New York Times toured Mr. Molina's gallery recently, getting a rare peek into the collection that contains everything from a Masters of Business Administration diploma (from Harvard!) to a portrait of Winston Churchill. Via
posted by infini at 10:20 AM PST - 11 comments


The History of Byzantium is a podcast that picks up where The History of Rome left off, detailing happened to the eastern half of the Roman Empire after the last Western Emperor was dethroned. The podcaster, Robin Pierson, does a good job explaining the often, ahem, byzantine politics and thorny theology of Byzantium. So far there are five episodes, taking us from the chaotic years following the decline and fall of the West into the reign of Anastasius (491-518). [iTunes link]
posted by Kattullus at 10:16 AM PST - 38 comments

In need of a regular dose of audio short fiction, whether it's horror, crime, or pulp fantasy? Welcome to the District of Wonders, a collection of podcasts spun off from the award winning StarShipSofa (previously, previosly).
posted by Artw at 9:43 AM PST - 9 comments

I'm lonely. Is that so odd? "All these methods of communication and yet nobody's communicating with me."
posted by feelinglistless at 9:37 AM PST - 72 comments

Hubig's Pies, a New Orleans institution for almost 100 years burned down last night in a five-alarm fire. For a city that's already lost so much, this is an especially devastating blow. Hubig's Pies are vital to the spirit of the city. But they've rebuilt before, and hopefully they will again.
posted by ColdChef at 8:42 AM PST - 76 comments

Hula-Hoop comedy show Annabel Carberry performs "A Glass of Red". This is a hilarious hula-hoop/dance routine about frustration, hula-hoop talent, keping your skirt down and control of a roudy audience.
posted by naight at 7:42 AM PST - 18 comments

Couple rescue trapped baby bears with a truck and a ladder. That's all.
posted by kinnakeet at 7:33 AM PST - 49 comments

"Among all who read Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories during the ‘40s and ‘50s, there was one common term for the unknown artist who drew the Donald Duck stories. Comics readers and comics fans all over the U.S. independently applied the same term to him. To fans in Ohio, California, Arkansas and Pennsylvania, he was 'The Good Artist.' His name was never signed to his work, and his publishers—until the early ‘60s—never revealed his name to his public, though many of us wrote (unforwarded) fan letters. His name, as we finally learned, is Carl Barks." How two determined fans found out who the Good Duck Artist was.
posted by MartinWisse at 7:23 AM PST - 40 comments

Vocal artist Nick McKaig provides his own accompaniment in this amazing a capella cover of the Indiana Jones theme. [more inside]
posted by quin at 6:01 AM PST - 20 comments

'The life of the city is infinite and unknowable; all we can do is look and report on what we find.' The London Column presents images of the city over the last sixty years, from the Festival of Britain to the present, a highly eclectic mix but with an emphasis on the everyday, the down-at-heel, the neglected and the unexpected. The compiler, David Secombe (formerly of Esoteric London), admits to 'a certain creeping cynicism towards the looming Olympic bunfight'. Like London itself, the site isn't easy to navigate, but the best way to browse is to go to the gallery page and follow the images that take your fancy.
posted by verstegan at 4:17 AM PST - 2 comments

"It is a familiar complaint from those of a certain age: today’s pop music is louder and all the songs sound the same. It turns out they are right. Research shows that modern recordings are louder than those of those of the 1950s and 60s. They are also blander, with less variety in terms of chords and melodies." [more inside]
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 12:46 AM PST - 152 comments

July 26

As you turn eyes to London to watch this year's Olympics, you might be surprised to find out that the City of London has a population of about 11,000 and is only one square mile. [more inside]
posted by eye of newt at 11:28 PM PST - 65 comments


28 years ago this summer, Leo Arnaud's "Bugler's Dream" suddenly found it had competition for the title of The Olympic Theme. Composer John Williams was commissioned to create a new fanfare, and "Olympic Fanfare and Theme" was the result, with the Fanfare portion being played at every medal ceremony in the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. But that wasn't the only music created for those Olympic Games... [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:26 PM PST - 24 comments

The Ju-Ju Magic of the Miners of Afosu. Photos and paintings from Ghana by Ben Zawalich.
posted by homunculus at 9:25 PM PST - 2 comments

"To the best of my knowledge, this is the first 3D printed firearm in the world to actually be tested." Gentleman describes how he used an old 3D printer and CAD files to print his own working gun.(*)
posted by stbalbach at 9:23 PM PST - 74 comments

Ross Andersen interviews Robert Pogue Harrison in the LA Review of Books: Deforestation in a Civilized World: ' In my reading of it, the epic stands for the angst or dread we have within the walls of civilization, and the hero Gilgamesh embodies that angst in many ways. In fact, Gilgamesh's first antagonist is the forest; he sets out to slay the forest demon Humbaba, the poetic stand-in for the cedar forests of faraway lands.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:36 PM PST - 3 comments



Microsoft’s low-octane swan song was nothing if not symbolic of more than a decade littered with errors, missed opportunities, and the devolution of one of the industry’s innovators into a “me too” purveyor of other companies’ consumer products. ... How did this jaw-dropping role reversal happen? How could a company that stands among the most cash-rich in the world, the onetime icon of cool that broke IBM’s iron grip on the computer industry, have stumbled so badly in a race it was winning? [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 6:45 PM PST - 124 comments



Curt Schilling set out to build the greatest video-game company the world had ever seen, and to get rich — Bill Gates rich — doing it. Instead, the whole thing exploded in his face. Plus, a brief follow up. (Previously)
posted by MegoSteve at 4:04 PM PST - 73 comments

Just how many applications does a company recruiting on Craigslist have to wade through? It turns out that in 24 hours, for a basic full time job with benefits, the answer can be as high as 653.
posted by ChrisR at 3:43 PM PST - 71 comments

Joe Peacock of CNN's Geek Out! decides to tell which "pretty girls" deserve or don't deserve to have the coveted label of geek. A follow-up on Forbes takes offense at some of Peacock's stereotypes.
posted by Isadorady at 3:12 PM PST - 214 comments

Five guys take same photo for 30 years. 'When five teenagers sat down and posed for a picture at Copco Lake in 1982, they didn't plan on making it a tradition. But that's what it became. Every five years for the past three decades, John Wardlaw, John Dickson, Mark Rumer, Dallas Burney and John Molony have been meeting at the California lake and taking the same photo.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 12:55 PM PST - 120 comments


Today Google announced the details of its Google Fiber program (previously), rolling out in Kansas City (both Missouri and Kansas versions) within the next few months. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 12:35 PM PST - 141 comments

I fantasize about academic sharecroppers organizing with contingent workers across industries, a category (taxi drivers, seasonal workers in agriculture and tourism, truckers, office temps, construction temps...) that has exploded over the last twenty years. Together their power would overturn cities. But for that to happen, academic sharecroppers will have to tear their allegiance from the people who love what they love, that is, they will need to understand that my job is funded by their oppression, that there are more of them than there are of me, that they are the shaky foundation on which people like me totteringly stand. There are more and more of them and fewer and fewer of me. Adjuncts as sharecroppers. There's a reason it's #14. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog at 11:09 AM PST - 67 comments

"MathB.in is a website meant for sharing snippets of mathematical text with others on the web. This is a pastebin for mathematics… The post can be composed in a mixture of plain text, LaTeX and HTML."
posted by grouse at 11:05 AM PST - 5 comments


Technology meets art in the collision sculptures of Eyal Gever
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 11:00 AM PST - 5 comments

A six minute trailer has been released for the film adaptation of David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas, directed by Tom Tykwer and The Wachowskis. [previously]
posted by brundlefly at 10:44 AM PST - 106 comments


Scientists have mapped the social networks in Beowulf, the Iliad and the Irish epic Táin Bó Cúailnge and compared them to networks as mapped by Facebook. The results were surprising, with all three mapping well to real-world social networks and leading scientists to believe that they are all based on real events. Harry Potter, Les Misérables, Shakespeare's Richard III, and The Fellowship of the Ring were used as controls. (Abstract and link to the paper, which is available in its entirety for 30 days, although it does require creating a free login.)
posted by stoneweaver at 10:15 AM PST - 29 comments

The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts has ruled for the first time that a civil union must be treated as equivalent to marriage. The full decision is here.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:55 AM PST - 26 comments


In March Jimmy Kimmel aired footage of celebrities reading tweets about themselves [Previously]. The next instalment is ready for your amusement. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan at 9:40 AM PST - 37 comments

Finding it hard to get excited about the Olympics? Feel like the broadcasters aren't giving you enough back-story or form guides to the sports you want to watch but haven't seen for 3 years and 51 weeks? You need the Olympics Prospectus. [more inside]
posted by The Ultimate Olympian at 9:03 AM PST - 30 comments

A critique of Sir James Frazer's The Golden Bough by Colin Dickey. "For all its erudition and analysis, The Golden Bough has for more than a century helped cement the idea that magic is inappropriate, wrongheaded thought. Yet what separates magic from religion or science is not its methodology—Frazer himself notes that it 'is therefore a truism, almost a tautology, to say that all magic is necessarily false and barren; for were it ever to become true and fruitful, it would no longer be magic but science'—it’s that ordinary people can do it, transforming their lives with the ambitious power of everyday thought." Via Lapham's Quarterly's Magic Shows issue.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 8:29 AM PST - 62 comments

10 Rather Astonishing Corporate Theme Songs (the Fujitsu one is a particular delight). And the pharmaceutical version. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 8:13 AM PST - 25 comments

"For Iron Man 2, there was a massive set built for the Stark Expo. It was the largest blue screen ever used in a film. It was so funny being there and having Jon explaining that to me, realizing we had done the same thing years before." A comprehensive behind the scenes interview with the creators of Nick Arcade. (Previously)
posted by yellowbinder at 7:39 AM PST - 9 comments

Divekick is the one true fighting game. It's got moves. It's got characters. It's got a secret character. And it's even been to EVO and UFGT. Want to be a Divekick champion? learn to play. [more inside]
posted by griphus at 7:24 AM PST - 27 comments



A few months back, SB Nation's Matt Ufford went to the Westminster Dog Show with a mission to pet every dog there. From the similarly awesome ideas file, Vice sent a reporter there who’d never done acid before to experience the Westminster Dog Show on acid. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:10 AM PST - 37 comments

Annoyed at people biking while on their mobile? It could've been so much worse.
posted by MartinWisse at 5:57 AM PST - 36 comments

Dachshund gets stuck in sweater sleeve. Flops around adorably. [slyt] [more inside]
posted by quin at 5:55 AM PST - 47 comments

Let's Have A Kiki Videodrome Discothèque turn a Scissor Sisters song into a truly epic camp collage. (SLYT; N, as you might expect, entirely SFW) Vimeo for if you're on mobile.
posted by Diablevert at 4:50 AM PST - 13 comments

Mary Tamm, best known as the first Romana from Doctor Who's Key To Time series between 1978–1979, has died. She left the show after just one year feeling that her role had devolved into the "typical assistant" trope, and went to to have a varied career on stage and screen in the UK, including a three-year stint on Brookside. She had been suffering from cancer for 18 months.
posted by Mezentian at 4:30 AM PST - 56 comments


I born in factory. They put me in wrapper. They seal me in box. Three of us in box. In early days, they move us around. From factory to warehouse. From warehouse to truck. From truck to store. One day in store, boy human sees us on shelf. He grabs us, hides us under shirt. He rushes outside. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 12:15 AM PST - 80 comments

July 25

Terran Lane's short blog post explaining why he is leaving academia (for a post at google) offers concise and damning insight into problems at US research universities. I find the analysis resonates with the Canadian experience as well (though I'm a grad student not a professor)..
posted by chapps at 9:26 PM PST - 72 comments

WalesOnline reported earlier this week on a UK government funded experiment in which kittens had their eyes stitched shut in an examination of how the brain reacts to sensory deprivation. In a related poll, nearly 11,000 Mirror readers were nearly split in their support for the experiment. The University of Cardiff has vigorously defended the experiment, saying the study will lead medical researchers to an "improved understanding of the brain to treat older children or adults, whose amblyopia has been missed or not treated adequately in time."
posted by GnomeChompsky at 8:45 PM PST - 70 comments

A fascinating interview with Vince Gilligan, showrunner of Breaking Bad. The questions are as excellent as the answers.
This points to that quality of improvisation with the work you’re doing. In a traditional crime show, like “CSI,” if it were a big band, it’s a big band working off charts. The arrangements are very tightly controlled. And what I sense with “Breaking Bad” is a sense of, I don’t know, “John Coltrane on acid.” You have this sense of improvisation where you go with things you know, where you tell the story the length it needs to be told. You’re inspired collectively by a moment and you decide to go deeper into that moment. You’re in essence leading a parallel life with your characters and letting those characters take you where they want to go — not necessarily where the dictates of commercial convention say they have to go.
Meanwhile, Alan Sepinwall asks actors Bryan Cranston (2) and Aaron Paul about some of their most iconic moments on the show. [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich at 8:39 PM PST - 100 comments

The Future Forms Of Life. A Film by David Lance - Story based on Theo Jansen's Kinetic Sculptures.
posted by homunculus at 8:22 PM PST - 4 comments

Colorblind Racism Inside the U.S. Advertising Industry. A dissertation by Chris Boulton. [15:13 Vimeo] [more inside]
posted by cashman at 7:47 PM PST - 14 comments

Who will win the vinyl spinning marathon? Who's favourite in the cotton tote sack race? Yes, it's wall-to-wall irony at Berlin's second Hipster Olympics. You've probably never heard of them.
posted by vidur at 7:25 PM PST - 31 comments

There comes a time in the musical lives of some guitar players when six strings just won't get the job done. They need seven. Or eight. Or nine. Or ten. Or eleven. Or twelve. Or eighteen. [more inside]
posted by Egg Shen at 6:41 PM PST - 27 comments


"Cartridge Tilting" is the process of upsetting a ROM cartridge by physically lifting one side of the cartridge in a computer or video game console which is in use. It is considered to work best on N64 games and results in surreal, often creepy deconstruction of music and physics. [more inside]
posted by Frobenius Twist at 4:22 PM PST - 37 comments


Last Saturday Anaheim police shot Manuel Diaz as he fled from questioning. Neighborhood residents approached the police and recorded the scene of the shooting. As tempers rose, the police attempted to control the situation. This did not go well. On Sunday, many people joined a protest at the Anaheim police department held weekly since 2010. On the same day, Anaheim police shot and killed Joel Acevedo, during an arrest for a stolen car. Further protests at the Anaheim City Council meeting on Tuesday turned violent with some protestors throwing rocks and smashing windows. [more inside]
posted by eurypteris at 4:15 PM PST - 76 comments

Kerouac as an 11 year old? Many of us have ran away from home. Most make it to the first street corner before coming back home. Liam Corcoran of Manchester made it all the way to Rome. He managed to board a plane without a passport or boarding pass.
posted by 2manyusernames at 3:35 PM PST - 25 comments

The Profound Programmer combines realistic exclamations with beautiful nature imagery.
posted by Nomyte at 3:18 PM PST - 60 comments

Education, Income, and Fertility in America, and What They Mean for the Future of the Country "Since the average American woman has 2.1 children, you might think we aren't experiencing a national fertility crisis. Unlike some European countries whose futures are threatened by low birth rates, Americans, on average, produce just the right number of future workers, soldiers, and taxpayers to keep our society humming... Two new studies bring the contrasting reproductive profiles of rich and poor women into sharp relief. One, from the Guttmacher Institute, shows that the rates of unplanned pregnancies and births among poor women now dwarf the fertility rates of wealthier women, and finds that the gap between the two groups has widened significantly over the past five years. The other, by the Center for Work-Life Policy, documents rates of childlessness among corporate professional women that are higher than the childlessness rates of some European countries experiencing fertility crises."
posted by bookman117 at 2:37 PM PST - 102 comments


A headline rivalling “Batman to leave Gotham”: “Maupin to leave San Francisco.” But before the Tales of the City author (previously) moves to Santa Fe with his husband, you can pick up Armistead Maupin’s house for a mere $1,198,000. (28 Barbary Lane is not for sale.)
posted by joeclark at 12:51 PM PST - 32 comments

No more "Hunger Games" in our District! [autoplaying music] Running for State Senate in Brooklyn on the Republican and Conservative tickets, Mindy Myers, 22 and an Orthodox Jew, is the self-proclaimed Diva of the District. In an interview with City and State she says “I’m trying to attract a young crowd and recruit more young people," [...] "People in politics are out of touch with the younger generation, who are not voting, are not registered.” [more inside]
posted by the young rope-rider at 12:45 PM PST - 67 comments

The 101st Bayreuth Festival opened today with a new staging of Richard Wagner's opera The Flying Dutchman. The celebrity audience including German Chancellor Angela Merkel were overshadowed by the sudden departure from the cast of its leading baritone, Evgeny Nikitin, who withdrew from the company four days ago after a German TV program showed film clips of the Russian singer sporting what appeared to be a swastika tattoo. [more inside]
posted by La Cieca at 12:38 PM PST - 21 comments

'Everyone Has a Name' Project Everyone has a name. And everyone has a story. This photo project is dedicated to promoting dignity and to enlightening society's view of the homeless. A project by Charlie O'Hay. [more inside]
posted by jillithd at 11:44 AM PST - 6 comments

"Discovering Dad" aka delving into Terry Gilliam's personal archive. Terry Gilliam's daugher Holly uncovers the gems of Terry Gilliam's personal archive - from pre-Python days through Python to his feature films and beyond.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 10:54 AM PST - 18 comments

Y: The Last Man Rising is a fan film based on the comic series. (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:53 AM PST - 14 comments


In the five day period between July 8th and July 12th, Greenland saw a dramatic and unprecedentedly rapid thawing across 97% of its surface ice cover. Initially, NASA and other experts questioned the satellite data, viewing such a rapid melting as too unlikely to be true, but NASA has since confirmed the results. [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 9:48 AM PST - 86 comments

The Improper Bostonian: "In a town rightfully famous for its trailblazing female chefs, where Julia Child helped introduce American families to fresh vegetables and unprocessed foods, and Lydia Shire fine-tuned the buttery possibilities of French cooking, women have hardly disappeared from the dining scene. They can be found in other kitchens. But where and why are subject to debate, depending on whom you ask."
posted by hypotheticole at 8:48 AM PST - 20 comments

The Ben-Zvi Institute in Jerusalem houses the Aleppo Codex, considered the oldest and most authoritative text of the Hebrew Bible. Written in the 10th century AD and annotated by Maimonides himself, it was safeguarded by the Jewish diaspora and revered for its linguistic precision and its beauty. "The story of how some 200 pages of the codex went missing — and to this day remain the object of searches carried out around the globe by biblical scholars, private investigators, shadowy businessmen and the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence agency — is one of the great mysteries in Jewish history." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:52 AM PST - 36 comments

For the past 13 years, with every new release of (Mac) OS X John Siracusa has written insanely detailed reviews of the newest version for Ars Technica. Apple OS X Mountain Lion came out today. This morning, John Siracusa's 25,935 word review was released to the public. Not sure if you want to read the review? Read Marco Arment of Instapaper's review of the review. If the epic detail of the review wasn't enough, Siracusa split out a separate blog post about the review on his personal blog. [more inside]
posted by azarbayejani at 7:31 AM PST - 182 comments

Superhero Typographic Classifications: "The most distinguishing factor of any font is its characters. Hidden beneath these characters, each typeface also has character—its own unique characteristics. However classified this information may seem, when used correctly, typefaces often speak to us more powerfully than the words that are written with them."
posted by Fizz at 7:10 AM PST - 23 comments


Berk Senturk's Like a Sir series features superheroes and villains done as classically styled oil paintings. [more inside]
posted by quin at 5:42 AM PST - 26 comments

The Project Twins have created bold illustrative posters of unusual words from A to Z. (via)
posted by divabat at 4:32 AM PST - 19 comments

The Scottish Government has announced that it intends to legalise same-sex marriage, and will produce a draft bill for public consultation within the year. [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns at 4:15 AM PST - 69 comments

July 24


There's been a lot of talk about the snarls and snafus preceding this year's games. But even as the training is winding down and the athletes are pouring into the Village, there's still plenty of interesting stuff going at this year's Olympics. Like, have you heard about the Olympian without a country? (He's not the first independent athlete to compete.) Or that almost all the US swim team gets themselves ritually tattooed with the Olympic rings? Or that a California girl is one of Saudi Arabia's two female competitors? Or that Caster Semenya (previously 1,2) will be South Africa's flag bearer? Or that Nur Suryani Mohamed Taibi may be the first Olympic athlete to have to worry that a kick from her unborn child may put her out of the medal running?
The Christian Science Monitor has been highlighting athletes who's struggled to get to the games, including Behdad Salimi, who'll have to prove he's the strongest man in the world to bear Iran's lone medal hopes, Hiroshi Hoketsu, who's competing in his third Olympics this go round --- second since he retired from his desk job, and Gladys Tejeda, who grew up in a family of subsistence farmers in an Andean village so remote she hadn't even heard of the Olympics until her family got a TV --- in 2007. London will be her third marathon. Of course, there's another class of competitors whose fight to get to the games was a little more literal: This is the first year for women's boxing.... [more inside]
posted by Diablevert at 9:27 PM PST - 66 comments

Steve Wozniak explains his rules of the road. My best habits include use of blinkers and not blocking others. I keep a good distance behind the car in front of me. I never tailgate. Also, I buy and study the large DMV handbooks from the first page to the last. I would never lie in traffic court. Once I was asked if I could have been going 75 mph and I told the truth, that I didn't know because I hadn't looked at my speedometer. I lost on that one. Steve Wozniak (Mefi's own-ish) fills in for San Jose Mercury News columnist Mr. Roadshow.
posted by purpleclover at 9:06 PM PST - 32 comments

The youtube channel Racing in Slow Motion hosts short films featuring scenes from motor racing in (you guessed it) slow motion. [more inside]
posted by maxwelton at 8:41 PM PST - 4 comments

Sugar's catalog has been remastered and reissued: "Mould laid down the roots of modern indie rock in the ’80s with his band Hüsker Dü. The fiery dirty punk torch Hüsker Dü ignited was passed to Nirvana, among other newly anointed grunge bands that flamed bright in the early ’90s musical revolution. Nirvana then passed the torch right back to Mould who infused his new band, Sugar, with a grunge-inflected pop punk sound scarcely heard before 1992, the year that Copper Blue was initially unleashed on the public." [more inside]
posted by bardic at 8:06 PM PST - 85 comments

There is now a live stream of bears gathering to eat salmon at Brooks Falls in Katmai National Park. [more inside]
posted by charmcityblues at 8:04 PM PST - 95 comments

Parlez-vous war criminal? Leopold Munyakazi and Goucher college Sanford H. Ungar, journalist and current President of Goucher, a small liberal-arts college near Baltimore writes about his experience hiring - unbeknownst to him - a Rwandan war criminal (Leopold Munyakazi) to teach French as a visiting scholar, and the aftermath for him personally. He examines the sometimes problematic desire from liberal arts colleges, or at least Goucher in this instance, to hire somebody controversial, and delves in to the blurry world of apportioning blame in the Rwandan genocide. [more inside]
posted by thetarium at 7:50 PM PST - 24 comments

Rumor has it that Bob Dylan's upcoming album Tempest will feature a 14-minute song about the sinking of the Titanic, which seems pretty plausible, right? The guy has written about the Titanic before, and he likes to tell long, repetitive stories, not unlike your very talented Grandpa. Well, Tim Heidecker (of Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!) has decided to try and anticipate Mr. Dylan's song, creating his own epic that encompasses not only the amazing, historically accurate tale of the ill-fated ship, but also the adventures of a movie pirate named James Cameron.
posted by porn in the woods at 6:53 PM PST - 37 comments


A team of Austrian archaeologists has discovered four bras from the 1400s. It reveals that women wore the garment some 500 years before fashion historians thought it was invented.
posted by Egg Shen at 6:30 PM PST - 45 comments

Sherman Alexander Hemsley died today at the age of 74. Perphaps best known for his role as George Jefferson on All in the Family and its spin-off, The Jeffersons, Hemsley's career spanned over four decades, including working on stage, in films, and of course, appearing (or starring in) in many TV shows.
posted by KillaSeal at 6:20 PM PST - 71 comments

Gunther Holtorff has been driving a Mercedes Benz Galaendewagen named Otto around the world for 23 years. 800,000km without a breakdown. via Bring a Trailer
posted by Forktine at 4:40 PM PST - 55 comments

2 UC Davis neurosurgeons accused of experimental surgery are banned from human research. Bacterial infection after surgery to remove glioblastoma is thought (anectodally by neurosurgeons) to confer survival advantage to patients, despite limited and contradicting information from previous studies (abstract 1, abstract 2). Drs. J. Paul Muizelaar and Rudolph J. Schrot, with patient consent, introduced Enterobacter aerogenes into open wounds of 3 terminally ill patients in an effort to prolong life. Two patients later died due to sepsis. Upon learning that Muizelaar and Schrot had given patients the bacteria, UC-Davis notified (pdf) the Food and Drug Administration of the serious non-compliance issue. Currently, both Muizelaar and Schrot remain employed at UC-Davis, and Muizelaar remains chairman of the Nuerological surgery department.
posted by nasayre at 4:38 PM PST - 49 comments

President John Atta Mills of Ghana died unexpectedly today, with Vice President John Dramani Mahama taking the presidency. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 4:17 PM PST - 12 comments



"According to a photo published to the 'Wipe Out Homophobia" Facebook group, Chick-Fil-A has announced a voluntary recall of Jim Henson's Creature Shop Puppet Kids Meal toys, and is blaming it on safety issues. There's no information on when the notice was allegedly put up, but the 'recall' is backdated to one day before the Jim Henson Company cut ties with Chick-Fil-A for its donations to anti-gay groups."* All this comes on the heels of Chick-Fil-A's COO, Dan Cathy, owning up to the company's contributions to anti-gay causes in a recent interview: "Well, guilty as charged." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 1:19 PM PST - 274 comments

"The Western observer tends to split the Russian press into two camps: evil statists and martyrs. But for their part, members of the Russian press are convinced of their superiority over their Western colleagues, at least when it comes to Syria. Russian journalists aren’t under the illusion that they are more objective than their Western counterparts, but they are convinced of their ability to convey a more realistic, complex picture of the events in Syria." - The New Republic: In Russia, Even Putin’s Critics Are OK With His Syria Policy
posted by beisny at 12:08 PM PST - 34 comments

PSY (Park Jae Sang) is a Korean singer, previously graduating from Boston University and Berklee College of Music. His latest, Gangnam Style, parodies K-pop videos and features several singers from that genre, plus Korean tv stars. Gangnam itself is a wealthy region of Seoul. The lyrics are perhaps standard for pop songs, while reactions to the video [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] show that a visually engaging video and a catchy tune are often fun the world over, irrespective of the language.
posted by Wordshore at 11:19 AM PST - 44 comments

We Happy Trans is a place to share positive trans experiences. The site features a project called 7 Questions, where trans folk discuss their lives. Notable contributors include site owners Jen and Noah, as well as "glittery hot pink polyamorous unicorn" Ira, Moose, who just started testosterone treatment, and Stephen, whose charm proves that not all celebrities' kids are screw ups. [more inside]
posted by roger ackroyd at 11:11 AM PST - 35 comments

An analysis of nearly 1,700 public and private nonprofit colleges being unveiled this week by Bain & Company finds that one-third of the institutions have been on an “unsustainable financial path” in recent years, and an additional 28 percent are “at risk of slipping into an unsustainable condition.” Presenting thesustainableuniversity.com.
posted by gerryblog at 11:00 AM PST - 87 comments

How Big is the Universe? Measured with a protractor. Lots of Pictures!!!
posted by Yellow at 10:48 AM PST - 34 comments

Mapping Toilets in a Mumbai Slum. As part of an initiative by the Harvard School of Public Health, a team of students is researching life in the Mumbai slum, Cheeta Camp. They started by studying sanitation and water use. Their results? This map of toilets.
posted by bluefly at 10:46 AM PST - 8 comments

Kim Dotcom - Mr President (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:42 AM PST - 34 comments

It's Not Just NYC: Across America, Only Black and Brown People Get Arrested for Pot - "New York City (previously), the pot-bust capital of the Western world, is notorious for the racial skewing (previously) of its marijuana arrests. Over the last 15 years, more than 85 percent of the half-million-plus people charged with misdemeanor possession there have been black or Latino. But the racial ratios of reefer roundups are equally extreme—if not worse—in scores of other U.S. cities." Same (trailer) as it (PDF) ever was? (video)
posted by mrgrimm at 10:04 AM PST - 60 comments


Horse Riding Fitness Ace Power! [YouTube, NSFW] (maybe not safe for home either).
posted by obscurator at 9:48 AM PST - 29 comments


Was climate science the real reason the strategic dynamos on the UVA board wanted president Teresa Sullivan gone? The fund manager behind the coup is "very, very angry" that I would even ask… In a three-part series (1, 2, 3) of muckraking blog posts, journalist Moe Tkacik investigates the possibility that the failed ouster of President Teresa Sullivan from the University of Virginia (previously) might have been motivated not by vague conflicts over Internet-based distance learning, as had been speculated — but instead by global-warming-denial politics, with the coup plotters on the Board opposing Sullivan over the hire of climate scientist Michael Mann (previously).
posted by RogerB at 9:28 AM PST - 16 comments

How to make money with £100 Five Guardian writers speculate to accumulate.
posted by mippy at 9:07 AM PST - 29 comments

Tomb Raider: Anniversary, a remake of the original Tomb Raider, had an interesting bonus feature: the designers of Tomb Raider Anniversary and Tomb Raider discussed the differences in the two games, the process of the remake and what it was like creating the game in 1996. Youtube playlist
posted by Cloud King at 8:48 AM PST - 14 comments

The Checkpoint. An essay which looks inside the conflicted mind of an Israeli soldier, stationed at a West Bank checkpoint. By Oded Na'aman, currently a student in the Philosophy PhD program at Harvard University, who served in the Israeli Defense Forces from November 2000 to October 2003. Mr. Na'aman is also a member of Breaking the Silence, a website that gathers and publishes anonymous testimonials from IDF soldiers -- combat veterans -- about their experiences and the realities of life in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza.
posted by zarq at 7:32 AM PST - 6 comments


The highest inhabited settlement on Earth is La Rinconada, Peru, at 5100 meters above sea level. It is a hellscape.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:43 AM PST - 28 comments


Two remastered episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation were shown theatrically on Monday in the US, Canada, and Australia, to tie in with today's release of season 1 on Blu-ray. If you caught the screening, missed it, or never had a chance, I thought it would be a good time to present this April 2012 cast reunion at the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo. All the regulars were there, including demi-godish Patrick Stewart (previously), Denise Crosby, and Wil Wheaton. Diana Muldaur fans will be disappointed. Seeing these videos may result in an anomalous time loss of several hours, but you may as well get it out of the way before the Olympics. [more inside]
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 3:06 AM PST - 80 comments

What Isaac Asimov thought 2012 would be like: "Assuming we haven't destroyed ourselves in a nuclear war, there will be 8-10 billion of us on this planet—and widespread hunger. These troubles can be traced back to President Ronald Reagan who smiled and waved too much." [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:44 AM PST - 138 comments

"I was raised out of steel here in the swamps of Jersey, some misty years ago..." The New Yorker's David Remnick profiles Bruce Springsteen.
posted by MonkeyToes at 12:07 AM PST - 67 comments

July 23


Acclaimed New Zealand children's and young adult's book author Margaret Mahy died in Christchurch yesterday aged 76. [more inside]
posted by Start with Dessert at 10:08 PM PST - 24 comments

With the U.S. Presidential election about 3 months away, and voter ID laws headed to court this Wednesday in Pennsylvania and in other states like Texas and Minnesota, Propublica tells you Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know About Voter ID Laws. A solution to a nonproblem. [Previously] [more inside]
posted by cashman at 7:38 PM PST - 96 comments

The Imaginary Foundation's blog showcases nature, science, art, art, science, and nature, showcased by the blog of the Imaginary Foundation.
posted by Lemurrhea at 6:38 PM PST - 6 comments


"Why Is the Teen Birth Rate in the United States So High and Why Does It Matter?" Kearney MS & Levine PB (2012) Journal of Economic Perspectives, 26(2): 141–63. [more inside]
posted by wilful at 5:42 PM PST - 122 comments


Sally Ride has died of pancreatic cancer at age 61. NPR blog. She was an inspiration to many. I saw her speak years ago when I took my daughters to a women in science program at the University of Michigan and both they and I came away impressed with her intelligence and commitment - the world is a richer place for her having been in it.
posted by leslies at 3:02 PM PST - 214 comments

Wisdom, Age, and Society in America and Japan "ONE stereotype of wisdom is a wizened Zen-master smiling benevolently at the antics of his pupils, while referring to them as little grasshoppers or some such affectation, safe in the knowledge that one day they, too, will have been set on the path that leads to wizened masterhood. But is it true that age brings wisdom? A study two years ago in North America, by Igor Grossmann of the University of Waterloo, in Canada, suggested that it is. In as much as it is possible to quantify wisdom, Dr Grossmann found that elderly Americans had more of it than youngsters. He has, however, now extended his investigation to Asia—the land of the wizened Zen-master—and, in particular, to Japan. There, he found, in contrast to the West, that the grasshoppers are their masters' equals almost from the beginning.... Japanese have higher scores than Americans for the sort of interpersonal wisdom you might think would be useful in an individualistic society. Americans, by contrast—at least in the maturity of old age—have more intergroup wisdom than the purportedly collectivist Japanese. Perhaps, then, you need individual skills when society is collective, and social ones when it is individualistic."
posted by bookman117 at 2:54 PM PST - 31 comments

False Positive is a a short story, webcomic anthology, which author and illustrator Mike Walton likes to call a stew, cooked from the gut, made with "a scoop of horror, a pinch of science-fiction, a dash of fantasy, and a bit of (To Be Determined)." Mike says the language could be rated PG-13, and the visuals feature a varying degrees of comic book violence and gore. There are 10 stand-alone "chapters" posted now, and new posts are made every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Mike also made a short trailer to further pique your interest. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 2:28 PM PST - 10 comments

Russia’s Top Cyber Sleuth Foils US Spies, Helps Kremlin Pals. 'Between 2009 and 2010, according to Forbes, retail sales of Kaspersky antivirus software increased 177 percent, reaching almost 4.5 million a year—nearly as much as its rivals Symantec and McAfee combined. Worldwide, 50 million people are now members of the Kaspersky Security Network, sending data to the company’s Moscow headquarters every time they download an application to their desktop. Microsoft, Cisco, and Juniper Networks all embed Kaspersky code in their products—effectively giving the company 300 million users.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 1:14 PM PST - 34 comments

Elizabeth Warren has been one of few public figures famously willing to put actual rhetorical force behind the notion that behind every American success story lies a web of civic and personal support, and probably a million small kindnesses as well. John Scalzi takes this notion and runs with it: he's written a thorough and eloquent accounting of how he's gotten to where he is, from a very humble background, and how that made the duty to pay it forward obvious and inescapable.
posted by tempythethird at 12:29 PM PST - 248 comments


Eater DC's monthly interview series, 'The Gatekeepers' talks to the hosts and hostesses at some of the city's most prestigious restaurants, discussing hard-hitting topics such as securing lucrative reservations, choosing the best table, and the favorite dishes of the famous dignitaries that pass through Washington. Their most recent interview, however, went a bit differently, perhaps revealing a bit more than intended about the world of fine dining -- a world where bribes are de rigeur, black customers are not seated next to each other, and well-dressed patrons are given preferential service. Though few in the industry will admit to it, bribing the host appears to be the fastest way to get a table (unless you're a tourist, or the Maitre d' happens to be the CEO of Groupon). HuffPo and the City Paper react.
posted by schmod at 10:25 AM PST - 53 comments

Russell Crowe has signed on to make his feature film directorial debut - a biopic about the life of the late US comedian Bill Hicks. [more inside]
posted by mediated self at 10:04 AM PST - 105 comments

Caterpillar, after record profits, squeezes its union for a six-year wage and pension freeze and increased insurance contributions - not because it has to, but because it can. As the machinists' union enters its fourth month on strike, the company says it's getting along just fine with temps and union workers who have crossed the picket line. Private-sector union membership is now at an all-time low of 6.9%. Even as calls to remedy America's income inequality grow from Occupy and other movements, nobody in power is helping. The Democratic Party's ship has long since sailed. (previously)
posted by moammargaret at 9:29 AM PST - 292 comments

Big Data On Campus (NYTimes) “We don’t want to turn into just eHarmony,” says Michael Zimmer, assistant professor in the School of Information Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, where he studies ethical dimensions of new technology. “I’m worried that we’re taking both the richness and the serendipitous aspect of courses and professors and majors — and all the things that are supposed to be university life — and instead translating it into 18 variables that spit out, ‘This is your best fit. So go over here.’ ”
posted by OmieWise at 9:25 AM PST - 23 comments

Yesterday I had the dubious pleasure of watching Oprah’s Next Chapter: India on TLC. The name of the programme is pretty self-explanatory. And I’d already heard of her series, Oprah’s Next Chapter in the US where she “steps outside of the studio for enlightening conversations with newsmakers, celebrities, thought leaders and real-life families”. I’ve never been a great fan of Oprah’s – and the fact that she truly follows and believes everything that Deepak Chopra and Dr Phil say has nothing to do with it. I do think though, that she’s a good interviewer, she’s well-informed, an easy conversationalist and is well-travelled. But all that has changed after watching Oprah’s Next Chapter: India. Myopic, unaware, ignorant and gauche. This was Middle America at its best worst.
posted by infini at 8:44 AM PST - 132 comments

"People prefer music that deviates from perfection in a natural way." Researchers into rhythm are trying to figure out the nature of these deviations, and what implications this has for audio engineering and neuroscience.
posted by EvaDestruction at 7:35 AM PST - 50 comments


Penn State Fined $60 Million, Paterno Wins Vacated Since 1998: For its attempts to cover up a serial child molester in its coaching ranks, the NCAA has hit Penn State with a $60 million sanction, a four-year football postseason ban, four-year loss of 10 scholarships, and the removal of all wins dating to 1998, taking away the late coach Joe Paterno's status as the winningest coach in college football's highest level. hat tip to Sportsfilter
posted by leotrotsky at 6:46 AM PST - 439 comments

PCKTKNFE is an entertaining little stop motion short about what happens when video game characters escape the confines of their consoles. [more inside]
posted by quin at 5:35 AM PST - 5 comments

"Assassination and targeted killings have always been in the repertoires of military planners, but never in the history of warfare have they been so cheap and easy. The relatively low number of troop casualties for a military that has turned to drones means that there is relatively little domestic blowback against these wars. The United States and its allies have created the material conditions whereby these wars can carry on indefinitely. The non-combatant casualty rates in populations that are attacked by drones are slow and steady, but they add up. That the casualty rates are relatively low by historical standards — this is no Dresden — is undoubtedly a good thing, but it may allow the international media to overlook pesky little facts like the slow accretion of foreign casualties." -NYT Opinionator: The Moral Hazard of Drones
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:24 AM PST - 271 comments

Chirp is an application that allows information such as photos, text or links to be transmitted to devices in earshot. The "chirp" containing the link to the data may be played from a devices or broadcast over radio or PA systems. Unlike many similar system the technology does not require receiving devices to be pre-paired. For now available only as an iPhone application. Discussion and demonstration.
posted by rongorongo at 3:45 AM PST - 55 comments

It's oddly mesmerizing to watch a pro at work. (In this case, masonry blocks.)
posted by maxwelton at 3:40 AM PST - 44 comments


July 22

Neil Gaiman, 7, Interviewed About Scientology by the BBC in 1968 David Gaiman, Neil's dad, was Scientology's UK PR chief. Neil was brought up in the cult but prefers not to talk about his childhood as a practising Scientologist. In 2010, he declared that he's not a church member.
posted by vanlal at 10:52 PM PST - 123 comments

Fighting Fantasy (FF) is a series of interactive gamebooks for kids, originally published in the UK between 1982 and 1995, created by Steve Jackson (no, not that Steve Jackson) and Ian Livingstone. In a nutshell, they were Choose Your Own Adventure books with simple dice-based gaming rules built into them. The books primarily focused on fantasy themes, but sci-fi, post-apocalyptic, super-heroes, and modern-day horror tales were all covered as well. Containing art both fantastic and ridiculous, they were many a young lad's gateway drug into more complex nerdery. [more inside]
posted by Palindromedary at 10:20 PM PST - 50 comments



The Perennial Plate: An American Food Trip is an online documentary series of short videos featuring "adventurous and sustainable eating" beginning in Minnesota and continuing around the US.
posted by Miko at 8:23 PM PST - 3 comments



YOU CHOSE WRONG. A children's treasury of horrible "choose your own adventure" story endings.
posted by lalex at 6:42 PM PST - 73 comments

If Aaron Sorkin had written Star Wars, Avatar, Ghostbusters, Twilight, and Harry Potter.
posted by WCityMike at 5:24 PM PST - 53 comments

In case you needed another reason to love/fear them: With a tone that sometimes rings condescending or conspiratorial but always wonderfully flippant, the best minds of cracked.com discuss the grandest extremities of modern physics.
posted by es_de_bah at 5:16 PM PST - 8 comments

great short video: Marley Marl, the producer of LL Cool J's 'Mama Said Knock You Out', recreates the beat, explaining its component elements and releasing a never-heard-before snippet of alternate LL vocals: "he says, 'hey, I got a sample that is so dope.' He pulls out Sly and the Family Stone..."
posted by the mad poster! at 5:10 PM PST - 36 comments

Mayim Bialik - once Blossom, now balancing acting and neuroscience - on not shaving. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 4:54 PM PST - 146 comments


A Capella Dubstep (slyt) Offered without explanation, because honestly, you can't explain something like this.
posted by cjorgensen at 3:36 PM PST - 45 comments

The Great Wall of China (長城) took 2000 years to build, and stretches for 5500 miles. Yet pictures of that wonder of the world in popular media are typically restricted to the tourist-visited sections closest to Beijing. (There are several sections of the wall near that city.) Kuriositas has gathered some images that present the Wall from other areas.
posted by zarq at 3:20 PM PST - 32 comments

North Americans may have noticed that U-Haul trucks and trailers are emblazoned with colorful SuperGraphics. First created in 1988 (previously), the mobile gallery now comprises 206 images. Most U.S states and Canadian territories and provinces are now honored by multiple designs, as are the U.S. armed forces and 9/11. The classic America and Canada's Moving Adventure series, seen on trucks and trailers, features an iconic image for each state, province and territory. The Venture Across America and Canada series, begun in 1997, presents "carefully researched rare findings, little-known facts and mysteries," exploring science and nature, technology and history. At the U-Haul website, the "Learn More" link on each Venture SuperGraphic page leads to a surprisingly exhaustive discussion of the subject of each graphic. [more inside]
posted by BrashTech at 12:47 PM PST - 30 comments

Curious Kazakh Gopher at a Spaceport. (SLYT with explanatory NPR blog post) [more inside]
posted by Eekacat at 12:41 PM PST - 23 comments

"Dramatic" New Maya Temple Found, Covered With Giant Faces (SLNatGeo)
posted by tykky at 11:37 AM PST - 23 comments

An ASL, queer version of "Somebody That I Used To Know". Possibly the one refreshing Gotye cover on the interwebs.
posted by Devika at 11:12 AM PST - 56 comments

Singer Kelly Hogan has a reputation as a journeyman, someone who's worked for years to master the craft but has yet to make a mark of her own. That may change with her new album, I Like to Keep Myself in Pain. Here are some songs: 1 2 3 4 5. [more inside]
posted by hydrophonic at 10:55 AM PST - 31 comments

What is the fair market value of an object that cannot be sold? When art dealer Ileana Sonnabend passed away in 2007 at the age of 92, she left her children an art collection estimated to be worth $1,000,000,000. Over a forty year career, Sonnabend, along with her first husband and business partner Leo Castelli, worked with many of contemporary art world's best known artists, including Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg & Andy Warhol. One of the inherited paintings, Robert Rauschenberg's Canyon has become the center of a dispute between the Sonnabend's children and the I.R.S.
posted by R. Mutt at 10:20 AM PST - 91 comments

The Library of America recently started an online companion to their 1950s Science Fiction Golden Era collection which includes cover art, interviews with authors and articles by writers on the genre. Previous link on LOA
posted by Isadorady at 10:13 AM PST - 7 comments

'Who's on First', the ASL version (vimeo). A little more on this from NPR, including link to MLB.com video of Jerry Seinfeld's comments on the original skit.
posted by found missing at 9:23 AM PST - 6 comments

In downtown Vienna under the Nazis, two members of the SA had decided to humiliate an old woman. A crowd gathered and jeered as the stormtroopers hung a sign bearing the words "I'm a dirty Jew" around the woman's neck. Suddenly, a tall man with a high forehead and thick mustache pushed his way angrily through the mob and freed the woman. "There was a scuffle with two stormtroopers, I hit them and was arrested immediately," the man later said in a matter-of-fact statement. Despite this open act of rebellion, the man was released immediately. He only had to say his name: Albert Göring, brother of Hermann Göring, the commander of the German air force and Hitler's closest confidant.
[more inside]
posted by daisyk at 9:13 AM PST - 31 comments

"In a genre of its own—Live-Action Graphic Novel—The Intergalactic Nemesis saga is a hilarious, uplifting adventure of heroes-by-circumstance overcoming impossible odds. But the telling is what makes the experience of The Intergalactic Nemesis so incredibly unique: while three actors, one Foley artist, and one keyboardist perform all the voices, sound effects and music, more than 1,250 hand-drawn, full-color, hi-res, blow-your-mind comic-book images blast from the screen, all performed live." [more inside]
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 6:23 AM PST - 9 comments


The Dealers is a new Israeli crime comedy, released here this weekend. The poster features the film's central players sitting around a table loaded with booze, weed, bongs, joints and other drug paraphernalia. For the stricter populace of Jerusalem, a modified version of the poster was prepared, one which removes all trace of... You guessed it: Women. The pot and booze? Untouched. [more inside]
posted by Silky Slim at 4:24 AM PST - 47 comments

Two writers discusses race, class, feminism and its intersections in this wide-ranging discussion about what feminism can mean for women of colour. Refreshingly substantive.
posted by smoke at 4:20 AM PST - 20 comments

July 21

He turns to the girl. "It would be really nice," he says, "to have a cigarette now."
"Yeah," she says without looking at him.
"Do you think the shop is open?"
The girl laughs and Adrian laughs, and then they laugh about their water-wrinkled fingers and the cabaret scheduled for tomorrow night that probably won't happen, and they keep laughing, because there is nothing else to do until someone finally gets them off Utøya.
— Sean Flynn writes the story of what happened on July 22nd a year ago [single page] when Anders Behring Breivik carried out a bomb attack and massacre in Norway that killed seventy seven people, and how those who survived and those who lost loved ones have dealt with the trauma. [Warning: It's not the easiest read, emotionally]
posted by Kattullus at 11:30 PM PST - 42 comments

Software engineer Erden Eruç left in a rowboat from Bodega Bay, California on July 11, 2007, after riding his bicycle from Seattle. The goal? Human-powered circumnavigation of the globe., including climbing the highest peak on each continent, in order to educate, inspire (and raise some money for) children's organizations. On the evening of July 21, 2012, he completed his trip, mostly successfully. [more inside]
posted by anarch at 11:26 PM PST - 15 comments

Dreamers is the first work by Joe Frank created for KCRW in 10 years.
posted by gwint at 11:06 PM PST - 9 comments

How Humankind's Theory of Mind Could Have Produced God "As a direct consequence of the evolution of the human social brain, and owing to the importance of our theory-of-mind skills in that process, we sometimes can't help but see intentions, desires, and beliefs in things that haven't even a smidgeon of a neural system... More than a few of us have kicked our broken-down vehicles in the sides and verbally abused our incompetent computers.... So it would appear that having a theory of mind was so useful for our ancestors in explaining and predicting other people's behaviors that it has completely flooded our evolved social brains. As a result, today we overshoot our mental-state attributions to things that are, in reality, completely mindless. And all of this leads us, rather inevitably, to a very important question: What if I were to tell you that God's mental states, too, were all in your mind?" [more inside]
posted by bookman117 at 8:17 PM PST - 218 comments

While the world ponders the impact of superheroes on the population in the wake of this weekend's tragic (and still unfolding) events in Colorado, and some ponder what a return to the bad of days of comics might mean, Warner Brothers has released two slightly different trailers for their attempt at latest updating Superman for the modern era: The Man of Steel, in Pa Kent or Jor El flavours. Via i09.
posted by Mezentian at 7:02 PM PST - 101 comments


Byzantium1200 is a project to create a 3d digital map of Constantinople and its famous monuments. The Hippodrome and Agia Sophia have been modeled as they would have appeared at their height. You can even watch a video of a Hippodrome race or see the results in book form.
posted by deanc at 4:16 PM PST - 15 comments

On Friday, Baron Sebastian Coe, the conservative politician, former athlete, and Nike board member who is chair of LOCOG (the London Organizing Committee) for the 2012 games, ignited a furor when he said anyone wearing a Pepsi T-shirt is likely to be "booted out" because it would upset Coca-Cola, who is an official sponsor. [more inside]
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 3:47 PM PST - 79 comments

"The world's super-rich have taken advantage of lax tax rules to siphon off at least $21 trillion, and possibly as much as $32tn, from their home countries and hide it abroad – a sum larger than the entire American economy." [more inside]
posted by deanklear at 3:27 PM PST - 60 comments

How to get rid of that annoying Fret Buzz. Lots of serious technical information on fixing your guitar, combined with a dash of silly humor. (SLYT)
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 2:57 PM PST - 24 comments

Anemia drugs made billions, but with what benefit and at what cost? 'For years, a trio of anemia drugs known as Epogen, Procrit and Aranesp ranked among the best-selling prescription drugs in the United States, generating more than $8 billion a year for two companies, Amgen and Johnson & Johnson. Even compared with other pharmaceutical successes, they were superstars. For several years, Epogen ranked as the single costliest medicine under Medicare: U.S. taxpayers put up as much as $3 billion a year for the drugs.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 1:29 PM PST - 18 comments

Views from the ISS at Night (Vimeo) - Knate Myers assembled this video from a series of time-lapse videos taken aboard the ISS. Plus, one of my favorite movie soundtracks! Naturally, go full-screen HD for best experience. [more inside]
posted by insert.witticism.here at 1:17 PM PST - 28 comments

Tap This : Does for Spinal Tap what a plastic surgeon does for Beverly Hills. Also: Aerochix, Hell's Belles, & Zepperella. via
posted by Ardiril at 12:41 PM PST - 8 comments

Cartoonists on the world we live in from the GrauniadGuardian, including such obvious suspects as Nicholas "PBF" Gurewitch and Kate "Hark!" Beaton, as well as others you've probably seen before but don't recognize but should.
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:21 PM PST - 11 comments

CAT LOVES GIRL Girl is unsure about it.
posted by The Whelk at 12:16 PM PST - 53 comments

Our friend and comrade Alexander Cockburn died last night in Germany, after a fierce two-year long battle against cancer. His daughter Daisy was at his bedside. [more inside]
posted by condesita at 11:45 AM PST - 62 comments

Heavy Breeding. "In 1920, the brothers Lutz and Heinz Heck, directors of the Berlin and Munich zoos, respectively, began a two-decade breeding experiment. Working with domestic cattle sought out for their 'primitive' characteristics, they attempted to recreate 'in appearance and behavior' the living likeness of the animals’ extinct wild ancestor: the aurochs. 'Once found everywhere in Germany,' according to Lutz Heck, by the end of the Middle Ages the aurochs had largely succumbed to climate change, overhunting, and competition from domestic breeds." [more inside]
posted by homunculus at 10:50 AM PST - 31 comments

Guardian Book Club: Use of Weapons by Iain M Banks, Week one: John Mullan discusses the twist [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:47 AM PST - 50 comments

Morton and Vicary on the Categorified Heisenberg Algebra - "In quantum mechanics, position times momentum does not equal momentum times position! This sounds weird, but it's connected to a very simple fact. Suppose you have a box with some balls in it, and you have the magical ability to create and annihilate balls. Then there's one more way to create a ball and then annihilate one, than to annihilate one and then create one. Huh? Yes: if there are, say, 3 balls in the box to start with, there are 4 balls you can choose to annihilate after you've created one but only 3 before you create one..." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 9:42 AM PST - 78 comments


Woody Allen's 2011 movie Midnight in Paris tells the story of a modern-day character repeatedly finding himself in the 1920s, in a kind of temporary time travel. As it turns out, this is a real-life phenomenon known as a time slip. Perhaps the most famous documented case was from 1901, at the Palace of Versailles. [more inside]
posted by mark7570 at 8:13 AM PST - 73 comments

Prada Menswear Fall/Winter 2012 — starring Neo-Victorian gentlemen Garrett Hedlund, Gary Oldman, Jamie Bell, and Willem Dafoe. Photographed by David Sims. (*quote by Coco Chanel.)
posted by cenoxo at 7:26 AM PST - 73 comments

Q: What's the connection between heroin in Glasgow and a dead goat in Turkey? A: Anthrax.
posted by Len at 6:46 AM PST - 16 comments

He is unknown. No name, no profession, no identifying details, but he looks out with the calm sternness of one who knows his place in the world. And because of this calmness, this sternness—the skeptical gaze and tight lips—we suspect it might be an image of the artist himself. Why Is This Man Wearing A Turban?, by Teju Cole.
posted by timshel at 6:38 AM PST - 20 comments


Brandalism, a mixture of vandalism, graffit and art,i is a form of guerrilla art which recently involved 26 artists from 5 countries transforming billboards in the UK. Original post here on Dangerous Minds.
posted by Isadorady at 12:03 AM PST - 36 comments

July 20

"I’m off. It’s been a while since I haven’t travelled alone. Last time was in 2008, I’ve been travelling in Sweden for a week after I put an end to my trip throught Europe. I had understood then that travelling by one’s own is something unlike anything, that this is a true and healthy experience, exiting, insperating. I’m on this train leading me to the unknown, and this feeling of being off on a adventure again is already exciting me. I’m off to spend ten days in Minsk, capital of Belarus."
posted by maxwelton at 11:41 PM PST - 17 comments

Sumo, the Japanese martial art that doesn't have a class at your local gym! Perhaps better known from Freakonomics than ESPN 5, the sport continues to draw crowds and contenders, an odd number of whom are from Eastern Europe, and one of whom is just barely over 200 pounds. Never seen it before? [more inside]
posted by Make Way for Ducklings! at 10:44 PM PST - 24 comments

SS Gairsoppa was a merchant ship working for the British in 1941. On her final voyage she was part of convoy SL-64, moving cargo from India to the UK. Gairsoppa carried tea, pig iron, and silver ingots worth £600,000 (in 1941). She ran short of coal and had to leave the convoy, hoping to reach a port in Galway. She got spotted by a German airplane, and was torpedoed by U-101. Gairsoppa sank in 4700 meters of water SW of Ireland. On Wednesday, Oddyssey Marine Exploration announced that they had recovered 48 tons (1203 bars, 1.4 million troy ounces) of silver from the wreck. (gallery) This is the heaviest and deepest recovery of precious metal in history, but it may be only 20% of the silver carried by the ship. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 6:52 PM PST - 20 comments

Mortician Caitlin Doughty - founder of The Order of the Good Death - answers some questions. Episodes: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. She also writes a very interesting blog. [more inside]
posted by sonika at 6:24 PM PST - 12 comments

This is just the top 30, what I consider to be the most likely candidates for actual new programming jargon based on community upvotes, not just "funny thing that another programmer typed on a webpage and I felt compelled to upvote for hilarity". Because that would be Reddit. Coding Horror presents the top 30 Stack Overflow New Programming Jargon entries.
posted by Artw at 5:50 PM PST - 66 comments


The manual lever espresso machine is having a renaissance. A company in London is about to launch a British made, beautifully designed, state-of-the-art home lever machine on the world. Some home machines have aquired cult status. Is it a nostalgic return to a pre-electronic era, or is it down to the basic mechanics of the piston that simply makes better coffee? [more inside]
posted by rolo at 4:17 PM PST - 55 comments

"The executive's home today is likely to be unpretentious and relatively small--perhaps seven rooms and two and a half baths. (Servants are hard to come by and many a vice president's wife gets along with part-time help. So many have done so for so long, in fact, that they no longer complain much about it.)" [more inside]
posted by benbenson at 4:16 PM PST - 30 comments

Computer Simulates Full Organism for First Time "Maybe they'll computerize an entire human brain one day—or even just a couple of cells. For now, Stanford scientists have created the first-ever software simulation of a full single-cell organism, the New York Times reports."
posted by bookman117 at 4:10 PM PST - 33 comments

Its writer refused to record it. Pat Boone almost killed it. Then it was resurrected as a B-side to an indie prestige project. Then it became an A-side in its own right, sold a half a million copies, and ended up being performed by its writer on the last ever episode of the Monkees. - "Song to the Siren's irresistible tang" by Martin Aston. [more inside]
posted by mrgrimm at 2:57 PM PST - 41 comments

NASA Scientist Investigates Driver Behavior SLYT (spoilers inside) [more inside]
posted by GregorWill at 1:52 PM PST - 63 comments

Last November, the Mayor Gallery had an exhibit of Sylvia Plath's sketches. (via)
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:03 PM PST - 5 comments

We've all seen various works that are "Untitled". Reasons given for leaving works "Untitled" include Edward Hopper's "If I could say it in words there would be no reason to paint." Others simply wish the art to "speak for itself". Some consider a title a necessary part of enhancing a work's commercial value. Others would never cop to contaminating their art with such a consideration. Some artists speak of "unease" and are conflicted about the subject while others are apparently under the influence of the post-modern tradition. Others think that it is evidence of "laziness" on the part of the artist, or in some way "selling their work short". Even when titles are given the creator has a fundamental choice to make. Some argue against "Untitled" out of sheer practicality.
posted by spock at 10:58 AM PST - 53 comments


Bob Babbitt, longtime session musician and member of Motown's house band The Funk Brothers, has died at 74. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:55 AM PST - 21 comments


In May new French minister caused a stir by wearing jeans to inaugral cabinet meeting. On Tuesday she wore a floral dress when addressing the Parliament. [more inside]
posted by zeikka at 8:09 AM PST - 155 comments

Two days after a juvenile mountain gorilla was killed in a poacher's trap within Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park gorilla preserve, two other juvenile gorillas dismantled several traps. Bushmeat hunters set traps within the preserve for antelope and other game, but sometimes capture apes. Veronica Vesellio, the director of the Karisoke Research Center (a unit of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund), says "I don't know of any other reports in the world of juveniles destroying snares." [more inside]
posted by catlet at 7:52 AM PST - 41 comments

The Screamotron3000 is a converted boombox that takes a picture when people scream. Its creator, Billy Hunt, hopes to use it to "offer a window through the inherently artificial process of portraiture into real human emotion."
posted by quin at 7:29 AM PST - 27 comments

"The business of recycling dead humans into medical implants is a little-known yet lucrative trade. But its practices have roused concerns about how tissues are obtained and how well grieving families and transplant patients are informed about the realities and the risks." After an eight month international investigation, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists has published an extensive four-part exposé into the black market for cadavers and human tissue: Skin and Bone: The Shadowy Trade in Human Body Parts (Via) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:26 AM PST - 32 comments

Comedy writing parter to Sen. Al Franken (the two went to high school together and shared an apprenticeship salary when first hired by Lorne Michaels as two of the first writers for Saturday Night Live), Tom Davis has died at 59 from throat cancer. In 2009 he published his memoir of those years, Thirty-Nine Years of Short-Term Memory Loss.
posted by aught at 5:54 AM PST - 38 comments

Barbed Wire no longer lines the Franco-Italian Alps. On the 11th of July this year, after working since 2002, mainly in the Mercantour National Park, the last of 134 tonnes of steel was finally removed for recycling by teams of volunteers. [more inside]
posted by fraula at 3:12 AM PST - 24 comments


A gas-masked perpetrator entered an Aurora, CO movie theater during the midnight premiere of The Dark Knight Rises, threw a smoke bomb and began shooting. Police in Aurora report that 14 are dead, and up to 50 others are injured. The lone gunman is believed to be in police custody. [more inside]
posted by pjenks at 2:37 AM PST - 1587 comments


"I believed based on my politics that government mandated health care was a violation of my freedom." When a "die-hard conservative Republican" woman moves to Canada and encounters the universal healthcare there, hilarity ensues as cultures clash.
posted by MartinWisse at 1:11 AM PST - 210 comments

Project Zomboid, Zombox, Dead State: Indie games and the zombie apocalypse clearly go well together. But what of that classic end of the world, nuclear armageddon? Peter Sahui covers Armageddon Empires - a five year old game with somewhat awkward controls which he insists still holds its own.
posted by Zarkonnen at 12:06 AM PST - 12 comments

July 19

Ever since seeing Scorsese's "Hugo" in 3D, formerly stereoblind Bruce Bridgeman can see in three dimensions.
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:07 PM PST - 43 comments

I go under the streets, under train tunnels, sub-basements and sub-sub-basements. I go deep.
You should be reading King City, a recently re-published comic by Brandon Graham, a former porn artist. The story of a man and his drug powered cat, it's a smorgasbord of science fiction; a pureed blend of Japanese, European, and North American alternative comic styles. An interview with Graham on sexual context, and another on the ego of a comic artist.
posted by special agent conrad uno at 6:48 PM PST - 18 comments

Friends of Science in Medicine (FSM) is a new advocacy group of senior medical practitioners and researchers seeking to drive "complementary and alternative medicines" from universities around Australia, and to make non-evidence based therapies ineligible for private health insurance. Naturally, this has caused a fair degree of outrage and pushback from the CAM sector.
posted by wilful at 6:33 PM PST - 90 comments

The full length trailer for P.T. Anderson's new movie The Master was just released.
posted by timsneezed at 4:42 PM PST - 87 comments

Ooh I Love you Rakeem, and The Wu-Tang Marketing Plan One of the most important singles in hip-hop history wasn’t great, or even particularly good. In fact, it was terrible. Even the most die-hard hip-hop fans probably haven’t heard “Ooh I Love You Rakeem,” the title track of Prince Rakeem’s 1991 debut EP, and there’s a reason for that. Prince Rakeem, a cartoonish, vaguely international ladies’ man, was a character foisted on rapper Robert Diggs by his record label. The Prince had just one concern. Women loved him too much, and he rapped about it. When the EP flopped, Prince Rakeem effectively died. But it wasn’t in vain—his demise gave birth to hip-hop’s greatest supergroup: The Wu-Tang Clan.
posted by grippycat at 4:29 PM PST - 39 comments

Swedish graphic designer Viktor Hertz uses pictograms to depict movies, rock music, and aphorisms.
posted by divabat at 4:28 PM PST - 8 comments

ChiZine Publications (CZP) is an independent Toronto-based book publisher that is single-handedly changing the face of genre fiction in Canada. Though CZP was founded just four years ago and put out just twelve books per year, they are responsible for four of the six nominees for the the 2012 Best Novel Prix Aurora (Canada's highest honour in genre fiction). CZP grew out of the self-styled "dark fiction" 'zine The Chiaroscuro which has been publishing free genre fiction online since 1997. Their most recent release is David Nickle's tale of cold war psionic operatives gone rogue, Rasputin's Bastards.
posted by 256 at 3:21 PM PST - 6 comments

The Piaget Beer Gauge - a product to clear up visual misunderstandings about height and volume in American bars.
posted by Greg Nog at 2:36 PM PST - 193 comments

Just as the 19th Annual International AIDS Conference is set to convene in Washington DC (the first IAC in the United States since 1987, when a travel ban was instituted and not lifted until 2009), President Obama has announced that his administration has invested $80 million in new grants for HIV/AIDS services, essentially eliminating the AIDS Drug Assistance Program waiting lists, which currently hold the names of 2,030 Americans waiting for access to HIV-related health care.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 2:08 PM PST - 11 comments

"Two days ago I purchased one of only two Nintendo PowerFest 94 cartridges known to exist. The purchase took 74 emails, 27 months, 6 phone calls, 5 failed meeting attempts, 1 sack of cash, and some additional twists and turns to finally complete."
posted by gilrain at 1:43 PM PST - 42 comments

Not The Onion: Cat Mayor celebrates 15th Year in Office. Stubbs (C-AK) is not the first or only non-human elected mayor of an American town; two dogs and a goat have shared the same honor.
posted by schmod at 1:23 PM PST - 33 comments

Why Polygamy is Bad for Society "A new study out of the University of British Columbia documents how societies have systematically evolved away from polygamy because of the social problems it causes. The Canadian researchers are really talking about polygyny, which is the term for one man with multiple wives, and which is by far the most common expression of polygamy. Women are usually thought of as the primary victims of polygynous marriages, but as cultural anthropologist Joe Henrich documents, the institution also causes problems for the young, low-status males denied wives by older, wealthy men who have hoarded all the women. And those young men create problems for everybody."
posted by bookman117 at 1:07 PM PST - 190 comments


Use Google street view to explore some past and present Antarctic Research facilities. [more inside]
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:00 PM PST - 17 comments

"This is about a girl that goes mining. I don’t know why, but she looks like she would go mining, mining for gold. " Judging a Book by its Cover: A 6-Year-Old Guesses What Classic Novels are All About.
posted by Navelgazer at 11:51 AM PST - 89 comments

Global Warming's Terrifying New Math, Bill McKibben [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 11:15 AM PST - 242 comments

"Aaron Sorkin is why people hate liberals." The writer of Sports Night, The West Wing, Studio 60 and The Newsroom makes Alex Pareene's Hack List at Salon.
posted by downing street memo at 11:12 AM PST - 163 comments



In this self-aware, soulful music I found everything I was looking for - and it frequently moved me to tears. It has been four years since the tragic passing of Swedish "jazz" pianist Esbjorn Svensson. [more inside]
posted by incandissonance at 9:58 AM PST - 9 comments

Bikers Against Child Abuse is an international non-profit with an annual budget of $200,000 and more than 160 chapters in 36 states and five countries. But it started with just one frightened 8-year-old boy in a therapist's office in Utah.
posted by Molesome at 9:22 AM PST - 70 comments

"I think it's simultaneously the best and worst idea I've ever had." When she was 17 years old, Alex Danis recorded herself lip-syncing to the song "“Aaron's Party". Three years later, she did it again, now at 23 she has done it one more time and put all three versions together in the fantastically charming 17-20-23. [more inside]
posted by quin at 7:27 AM PST - 43 comments


How to fix your cracked iPhone glass I hope this will help you save some money if you crack your iPhone screen. Then please take the money you would have spent to go do something nice for someone.
posted by Yellow at 7:08 AM PST - 57 comments

When McSweeney's posted "Suggested Buzzfeed Articles," Buzzfeed replied, "Challenge Accepted." Behold: 84 Things That Aren't On An Everything Bagel. And many, many more. [more inside]
posted by Diablevert at 6:55 AM PST - 97 comments

Here is a hand-drawn map of Arkham, Massachusetts, by H.P. Lovecraft himself.
posted by usonian at 6:23 AM PST - 53 comments

While researching the robotic sculptures of Kenji Yanobe (previously) I stumbled across this remarkable, eye-popping collection of artists at the Yamamoto Gendai. Enjoy...
posted by jim in austin at 5:32 AM PST - 7 comments

Graffiti from Pompeii is a collection of inscriptions found in Pompeii and published in the Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum. Much of it is not unlike what you might find scrawled in a toilet stall or on a wall in present day - declarations of love, friendship, and sexual prowess; complaints about careless defecators; philosophical musings about love, life, and death; and meta discussions about the act of graffiti itself.
posted by catch as catch can at 4:42 AM PST - 47 comments

Beeminder provides an interesting and novel solution to the problem of akrasia. Got a long term goal or habit you'd like to change or develop (like losing weight or writing every day), then set out your targets, record your progress every day and pay cold hard cash the day you fall off the 'yellow brick road'. [more inside]
posted by grahamspankee at 2:51 AM PST - 38 comments

July 18

"Our lazy embrace of Stewart and Colbert is a testament to our own impoverished comic standards. We have come to accept coy mockery as genuine subversion and snarky mimesis as originality. It would be more accurate to describe our golden age of political comedy as the peak output of a lucrative corporate plantation whose chief export is a cheap and powerful opiate for progressive angst and rage." -- Steve Almond, in The Baffler
posted by Miss T.Horn at 9:34 PM PST - 219 comments

This Toon Ain't Big Enough For The Both Of Us SLYToon) officially authorized by the original artists, those wacky guys.
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:42 PM PST - 16 comments

"Explosive sex with Mr Rochester," anyone? A publisher decides to add more sex to Jane Eyre and other classics.
posted by anothermug at 7:40 PM PST - 83 comments

When Cullen Jones competes in London at the end of this month, he'll be only the third African-American to represent the US on an Olympic swimming team- and he'll continue to challenge the stereotype that black people don't swim. [more inside]
posted by Snarl Furillo at 7:07 PM PST - 25 comments

In an interview published yesterday, Dan Cathy, president of Chick-Fil-A, tells the Baptist Press that Chick-Fil-A is "very much supportive of the family -- the biblical definition of the family unit." Also this week, Cathy told radio host Ken Coleman "I think we are inviting God's judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say 'we know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage." This is a change in Chick-Fil-A's corporate position; in 2011, responding to criticism that the company and its charitable arm, the WinShape Foundation, support organizations that work against LGBT rights and marriage equality, Cathy stated that the company "will not champion any political agendas on marriage and family." Chick-Fil-A is a fast food chain of franchises that operates in 39 US states; in 2011, annual sales exceeded $4 billion USD. The company is privately held.
posted by catlet at 6:48 PM PST - 212 comments

Change what you do for fun, build your physical strength, become a better person. Alanna Shaikh's TEDtalk on how to prepare yourself for Alzheimer's.
posted by katinka-katinka at 6:46 PM PST - 20 comments



Ray Wylie Hubbard hosts Roots and Branches weekly live from Tavern In The Gruene for New Braunfels, Texas radio station KNBT 92.1 FM. Two hours of music and interviews with established and up and coming Americana artists.
posted by Catch at 4:38 PM PST - 18 comments

The Dark Knight Rises trailers, Batman The Animated Series style: Teaser, Trailer 2, Trailer 3, Trailer 4. Side by side of Trailer 3.
posted by Artw at 3:44 PM PST - 58 comments

My name is Paul Drye and False Steps is my project blog for a history book of the same name which looks at the Space Race as it might have been. Beginning with what I think to be the very prehistoric beginning of manned space travel (the so-called Magdeburg rocket of 1932) I aim to trace the ways in which people tried to travel to space and came close to accomplishing, all the way through Nazi German rocketry, the post-WWII fallow period, the crazy times of Sputnik through Apollo, the second down time of the 1970s, and the gradual revival of human space programs from then into the present day.
Paul Drye of Passing Strangeness has a new blog about the roads not taken in the space race.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:31 PM PST - 3 comments

However, I do have a major criticism of her work, and fans be forewarned, it makes Agatha Christie sound like a cheap, opportunistic, exploitative monster that would have made Harvey Levin proud. Agatha Christie's book The Mirror Crack'd From Side To Side, later made into a movie starring Elizabeth Taylor, turns out to have been very loosely based on the tragic case of Gene Tierney's daughter, born deaf and severely mentally disabled after a fan snuck out of quarantine for Rubella to get an autograph from the actress. Drew Mackie explains.
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 3:08 PM PST - 35 comments

How To Read A Book takes us through the trials and tribulations of finding reading-time comfort. (SLYT)
posted by vorfeed at 2:14 PM PST - 27 comments

"This technology cannot simply substitute for the great libraries of the present. After all, libraries are not just repositories of books. They are communities, sources of expertise, and homes to lovingly compiled collections that amount to far more than the sum of their individual printed parts. Their physical spaces, especially in grand temples of learning like the NYPL, subtly influence the way that reading and writing takes place in them. And yet it is foolish to think that libraries can remain the same with the new technology on the scene. The Bookless Library, by David Bell (print ready version). [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 2:07 PM PST - 13 comments

NPR show us and tells the story of five men who agreed to stand directly below and observe a nuclear explosion.
On July 19, 1957, five Air Force officers and one photographer stood together on a patch of ground about 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas. They'd marked the spot 'Ground Zero. Population 5' on a hand-lettered sign hammered into the soft ground right next to them.
posted by gilrain at 1:41 PM PST - 42 comments

Quite Likely The Worst Job Ever: 'The men who made it their living by forcing entry into London’s sewers at low tide and wandering through them, sometimes for miles, searching out and collecting the miscellaneous scraps washed down from the streets above' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 1:28 PM PST - 26 comments

WesterosCraft is an attempt to recreate the main continent from George R. R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire in Minecraft. Completed builds include Winterfell, Castle Black and the Wall, Harrenhal, among others. [more inside]
posted by m@f at 1:25 PM PST - 17 comments


JP Morgan's manipulation of California energy market is a massive, illegitimate tax on the entire state. 'The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the regulator of the ISO and its trading markets, has started a formal investigation into Morgan's allegedly manipulative energy deals in California and with the Midwest ISO, which covers 11 states from Michigan to Montana.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 12:08 PM PST - 69 comments


Everyone talks about the cost of living, but how does your city or town stack up? EarDex is a crowdsourced database that offers an unofficial guide to the cost of living in cities and towns and even includes estimated daily budgets for tourists and backpackers. [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 11:23 AM PST - 39 comments

AV Club Interview with Nick Offerman Articulate and often profound, this excellent AV Club interview with MeFi favorite Nick Offerman (previously 1, 2, 3) discusses his role as Parks and Recreation's Ron Swanson, the modern concept of masculinity portrayed by Hollywood, the importance of being yourself, and prosthetic penises. Second page of interview NSFW. [more inside]
posted by dobie at 11:21 AM PST - 13 comments

"The amorphous concept of ‘creativity’ has become the unquestioned MacGuffin of our times, and anyone who doesn’t demonstrate it – or at least a willingness to cultivate it – is in danger of being labeled a conservative desk-monkey unfit for the creative rigours of our fecund social media world."

Molly Flatt on the cult of creativity.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 11:01 AM PST - 57 comments

Cartoonist Justin Hall is about to release No Straight Lines: Four Decades of Queer Comics, a book celebrating and showcasing the work of queer cartoonists, including Trina Robbins, Alison Bechdel, and Joey Alison Sayers. A 36-page excerpt can be downloaded here (pdf, 3.6 mb). [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 10:58 AM PST - 8 comments

BBC: Three men at the heart of President Assad's defence team have died in a suicide bombing, Syrian state TV says. NYT: Blast Kills Core Syrian Security Officials. Articles mention the attacker being rumored to be a bodyguard for the top security officials. [more inside]
posted by Anything at 10:37 AM PST - 61 comments


Cpl. Catherine Galliford of Canada's Royal Canadian Mounted Police first spoke out against sustained and widespread sexual harrassment by her superior officers in November of last year and launched a lawsuit in May 2012. Yesterday, the federal government of Canada and the provincial government of British Columbia issued a categorical denial of Galliford's charges. [more inside]
posted by Catchfire at 10:04 AM PST - 39 comments

The most recent issue of Businessweek contains an article about How The Mormon Church Makes Its Billions. There has been a backlash, mostly over the cover.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 9:34 AM PST - 296 comments


Public Service Broadcasting are a British banjo and synth duo who construct music based on samples from public information and propaganda films. Their objective is to 'teach the lessons of the past through the music of the future'. Darlings of BBC Radio's 6Music they have just released their War Room EP constructed around archive wartime material from the BFI. Each track has an accompanying, excellently edited film on the Youtube [more inside]
posted by brilliantmistake at 9:01 AM PST - 9 comments

Rich Kids Of Instagram
posted by gwint at 8:07 AM PST - 136 comments



On this day in 1988, just three months shy of what would have been her 50th birthday, Christa Päffgen, better known as Nico, died. Her stark, no-frills delivery conveyed a kind of guilelessness and honesty that many listeners continue to find refreshing. These Days. I'll Keep It With Mine. Chelsea Girls. Femme Fatale. All Tomorrow's Parties. My Funny Valentine. The Fairest of the Seasons.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:54 AM PST - 31 comments

Solaris, a new opera by German composer Detlev Glanert, to a libretto by Reinhard Palm based on the novel (previously) by Stanislaw Lem (previously), has its world premiere today at the Festspielhaus, Bregenz. [More inside] [more inside]
posted by Eyebeams at 5:41 AM PST - 8 comments

Warning Signs: A Flickr set of real and imagined warning signs.
posted by OmieWise at 5:41 AM PST - 17 comments


AmoeBAND has become a 2012 International Design Excellence Award finalist by innovating the hell out of the lowly plaster.
posted by catch as catch can at 3:05 AM PST - 17 comments

Aquarius, the NOAA Underwater Laboratory, could close after having their funding eliminated. previously
posted by I am the Walrus at 3:01 AM PST - 31 comments

Mr. Wizard's a Dick. [SLYT]
posted by mikesch at 12:23 AM PST - 60 comments

Billy Joel has now officially endorsed - The Longest Time (Coral Triangle Edition), by the Barber Lab Quartet [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 12:14 AM PST - 17 comments

July 17

A film made in 1920 with an all Native American Indian cast has been restored and will soon be released on DVD and blu-ray by the Oklahoma Historical Society, which now owns the original. [more inside]
posted by Isadorady at 11:38 PM PST - 17 comments

Back in the far distant past of the internet (round about 1993, it seems), back when Usenet was actually a bunch of popular discussion groups, the newsgroup alt.gothic had a simple post made by one Yohaun, a short list of translations of the phrase "Oh my god! There's an axe in my head!". Responses contributed translations in more languages. Now, nearly 20 years later, this list continues to exist and grow. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 10:22 PM PST - 54 comments

Legendary web-strippers Andrew Hussie and Ryan North have traded credit cards. Hussie blogs about North's purchases here. North blogs about Hussie's purchases here. Hilarity ensues.
posted by Rory Marinich at 9:35 PM PST - 15 comments


"Confessions of an Ex-Mormon: A personal history of America’s most misunderstood religion." by Walter Kirn, author of Up in the Air and Lost in the Meritocracy. (Via)
posted by zarq at 9:10 PM PST - 45 comments

Momo and Andrew realized that no one else could pronounce Danish either and finally did something about it. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 8:41 PM PST - 31 comments

Is America a post-racial society? Not yet, says Kenny Wiley. [more inside]
posted by asnider at 7:37 PM PST - 102 comments

Pug stealing food.
posted by Wordwoman at 6:53 PM PST - 26 comments

Michael J. Ruocco is more than the self-described 'curator' of the Animation Smears and Multiples tumblr* (previously here), he's also a talented young animator - here's his short toon about a bird who picked the wrong place to nest - and a serious student of Animation History whose other site is 365 Days of Ward Kimball**, about the Disney animator who was considered one of the best and certainly the most adventurous of Walt's 'Nine Old Men'. Kimball's free-wheeling style showed up in everything from Snow White to Fantasia to The Three Caballeros to his Oscar-winning short 'It's Tough to Be a Bird'. His semi-NSFW irreverence is on display in off-model drawings of Mickey Mouse and caricatures of himself. And on the side, he made elaborate comics for an antique car magazine, formed the jazz band The Firehouse 5 Plus 2 (that's him on trombone)*** and put a full-sized railroad with working trains in his back yard. [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:02 PM PST - 2 comments

The Right Honourable Mr. Burke: "The right wing trumpets Burke, who excoriated the murderous rebellion in France; the left wing salutes Burke, who excoriated his imperial colleagues for their overweening and rapacious greed in India and America; Christians celebrate Burke, who considered religion a crucial and indispensable pillar of civic life; the Irish savor a native son who became, as Hazlitt noted, “the chief boast and ornament of the English House of Commons”; the English honor the writer and orator of “transcendant greatness,” as Coleridge wrote, with his usual casual attention to spelling. … Everyone claims Edmund Burke, except me. I merely savor and celebrate him…"
posted by the mad poster! at 4:41 PM PST - 21 comments

"I was a sort of serious little dude—snobby. I thought girls my age were very frustrating. They were, like, looking in their compact mirrors and shit, and I thought that was evil." MeFi darling Joseph Gordon-Levitt gets a GQ profile.
posted by eugenen at 3:25 PM PST - 58 comments


A Pantone chart of German chancellor Angela Merkel's many coloured jackets
posted by 0bvious at 1:52 PM PST - 43 comments

Boy Scouts reaffirm policy denying membership to gays. [Reuters] "The Boy Scouts of America on Tuesday said the organization would continue to deny gay people membership, saying that the policy "is in the best interest of Scouting."
posted by Fizz at 1:44 PM PST - 222 comments

The Amazing Contents of Steve Wozniak's Backpack: I usually say that my backpack weighs 50 pounds. I'm not sure but I have to carry it every step through airports. I'm sure that I'm shorter now than before and I don't walk as fast. Everything has its place in my backpack.
posted by Slap*Happy at 1:01 PM PST - 123 comments

There are lots of different approaches to making a juggling video. A purist might explore the limits of 3 ball juggling, or try interesting movements with 3 clubs. Others might like to bounce their balls, although it can get a little noisy. Personally, I have a weakness for club passing, whether it's compilations of jugglers' favourite patterns, or jaw-droppingly impressive technical competitions. Fatboy slim's competition to make a juggling-themed music video to one of his songs yeilded some good stuff, and for people into juggling as a hobby, there are some great in-jokes to be found. [more inside]
posted by metaBugs at 12:55 PM PST - 9 comments

Teach Me How To Brushy (SLYT PSA)
posted by OverlappingElvis at 12:34 PM PST - 20 comments

The dining room was jammed to the fleur-de-lis wallpaper with red-faced white guys in blue suits and harried looking waiters in penguin costumes. Not my crowd. I remember hearing a muffled “linguine Alfredo” and the clinking of glasses at another table, and then the film snaps. This, as I’ve come to think of it, was the moment my first life stopped, where the film broke and the reel spun around and around, flogging itself.
Jokers Wild: Author Paul Vandevelder's contribution to the NYT(online)'s Anxiety series, featuring an illustration by Finnish artist Tommi Musturi.
posted by obscurator at 12:10 PM PST - 5 comments

How an apology from someone I had never heard of left me in tears. Bill Corbett (MST3K's Crow T. Robot) apologizes to the transgender community, in a damn classy fashion.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:16 AM PST - 145 comments

Turn all book covers into wallpapers [via mefi projects] Lovely book cover images from classic novels, remixed with "the most defining quote" from each book.
posted by exceptinsects at 11:04 AM PST - 15 comments


#DIRTYLAUNDRY is a short (and extremely violent) fan film about the Punisher, which is notable because it was directed by and stars Thomas Jane, who starred in the 2004 Punisher film. (Also featuring a appearance by Ron Perlman.)
posted by mightygodking at 10:40 AM PST - 52 comments

"The French Book Trade in Enlightenment Europe project uses database technology to map the trade of the Société Typographique de Neuchâtel (STN), a celebrated Swiss publishing house that operated between 1769 and 1794. As the STN sold the works of other publishers alongside its own editions, their archives can be considered a representative source for studying the history of the book trade and dissemination of ideas in the late Enlightenment." [more inside]
posted by Marauding Ennui at 9:59 AM PST - 5 comments

"In 1968 Richard Brautigan published 'Please Plant This Book' - poems printed on seed packets. I'm growing a living copy...."
posted by mippy at 9:56 AM PST - 18 comments


Everyone loves QWOP, but some people love it enough to cosplay it.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:03 AM PST - 25 comments

It's that time again. Time for the Juggalos to gather, this year in Cave In Rock, Illinois. The theme? Zombies, of course. And our very own dabitch has the 23-minute infomercial. (Previously and previously and previously.)
posted by grabbingsand at 8:50 AM PST - 130 comments

To Disneyland - you can now throw away that "Banned for Life" file you have on me, I'm not a problem anymore - and SeaWorld San Diego, too, if you read this. Val Patterson, 1953 - 2012, wrote his own obituary as he was dying of throat cancer. He made a few confessions.
posted by gaspode at 8:49 AM PST - 53 comments

Just because you don't like a study doesn't mean it's wrong. Gawker takes the rest of the blog world to task for misinterpreting this new paper on women who watch televised sports. [more inside]
posted by DiscourseMarker at 8:41 AM PST - 34 comments


Valve confirms Steam for Linux
posted by Artw at 8:20 AM PST - 88 comments

"Mr. Lukashenko has steadily turned Belarus into something akin to a prison colony. The possibility of ending up in prison is a constant risk for millions, and a check on even their most mundane daily routines." - Europe’s Last Dictatorship (SLNYTIMES)
posted by beisny at 8:09 AM PST - 21 comments

The popularity of "Somebody That I Used to Know" has made it a fairly ubiquitous earworm; so two guys in a car brilliantly deal with That Gotye Song.
posted by quin at 7:19 AM PST - 118 comments

“I never thought I’d be able dance with a man like this on a military installation.” Erwynn and Will: The unlikely story of the first gay military union.
posted by like_neon at 6:19 AM PST - 40 comments


U.K. Government to open up publicly funded research. In response to the report of the Working Group chaired by Dame Janet Finch (the Finch Report, Accessibility, sustainability, excellence: how to expand access to research publications - pdf), the U.K. government has accepted all the report’s recommendations and looks to the Funding Councils and Research Councils to implement them in consultation with universities, research institutions, researchers and publishers. [more inside]
posted by three blind mice at 2:12 AM PST - 16 comments

Back in the first half of the eighties, when the Soviet leadership was old, dementing and increasingly paranoid and president Reagan spoke of a winnable nuclear war and set in motion the Star Wars project to make it so, the nuclear holocaust was on many people's minds. It not only featured frequently in popular culture, but several films were made as explicit warnings of what a nuclear war would really be like. Of these movies, Threads (1984) was the most realistic and scary. The full movie is now available on Youtube for your "enjoyment". Warning: not very nice, sort of depressing. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:12 AM PST - 165 comments

July 16


The Gates Foundation's Leveraged Philanthropy: Corporate Profit Versus Humanity
Part I on the Gates Foundation's international aid projects and II on Gates' domestic education projects. [more inside]
posted by latkes at 11:43 PM PST - 18 comments


Dr Steve Mann, the inventor of wearable computing, relates his computer-vision-aggravated assault by McDonald's employees.
posted by gilrain at 7:27 PM PST - 287 comments

How comedian Tom Arnold's little sister Lori started the Midwest meth epidemic. (NSFW Playboy link: Instapaper, Readability mirrors.) [more inside]
posted by nicebookrack at 6:29 PM PST - 98 comments

Gender outlaw Kate Bornstein has written a memoir about her years in the Church of Scientology.
posted by Wordwoman at 6:25 PM PST - 20 comments

Kitty Wells, a pioneer of women in country music died today at the age of 92. Her first big hit, It Wasn't God Who Made Honky Tonk Angels, was a woman's reply to the Hank Thompson song, Wild Side of Life. [more inside]
posted by Isadorady at 5:43 PM PST - 41 comments

"We don’t hire homies to bake bread. We bake bread to hire homies"--Father Gregory Boyle, Jesuit Priest and founder of Homeboy Industries. [more inside]
posted by apricot at 5:25 PM PST - 23 comments


In light of today's news that one of two Shell ships slated to drill exploratory oil wells in the Arctic waters of Alaska's Chukchi and Beaufort Seas had slipped its moorings and was headed towards Dutch Harbor, in Alaska's Aleutian Islands... check out a collaboration between the Yes Men and Greenpeace that's been online since June: arcticready.com (Twitter) -- an elaborate site spoofing Royal Dutch Shell Plc, who have uh... promised not to sue.
posted by zarq at 3:06 PM PST - 15 comments

Yahoo CEO: Tim Koogle, Terry Semel, Jerry Yang, Carol Bartz, Tim Morse, Scott Thompson, Ross Levinsohn, Google's Marissa Mayer. Maybe they got it right this time?
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 2:34 PM PST - 118 comments


October 14, 2010: A breach at a bauxite processing plant spilled a million cubic meters of red sludge across the countryside near Ajka, Hungary, killing nine people. Six months later, photographer Palíndromo Mészáros took photos of the disaster site, abandoned save for The Red Line. (via) [more inside]
posted by googly at 1:49 PM PST - 20 comments

Life at Home in the Twenty-First Century: 32 Families Open Their Doors, a new book by UCLA's Center on Everyday Lives of Families (CELF), is the conclusion of an unprecedented nine-year interdisciplinary study of the middle-class American home. A team of archaeologists, anthropologists and other social scientists studied the home life of 32 two-income, middle-class families in Los Angeles. What they found was a lifestyle struggling with consumerism, and a staggering accumulation of possessions:
“The first household assemblage we analyzed, of Family 27, resulted in a tally of 2,260 visible possessions in the first three rooms coded (two bedrooms and the living room),” and that didn’t include “untold numbers of items tucked into dresser drawers, boxes and cabinets or items positioned behind other items.”
[more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 1:49 PM PST - 90 comments

The Advocate has compiled a list of all of the openly LGBT athletes who will be competing in the 2012 Olympics. Considering that 10,500 competitors will be traveling to London this summer, it's a very short list. (Warning: gratuitous pagination)
posted by schmod at 12:45 PM PST - 32 comments



Stephen Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Successful People, died today at age 79. According to Covey's family, the death was due to "the residual effects of a bike accident he suffered this past April." The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People has sold more than 20 million copies since its initial publication in 1989, and is one of Time Magazine's "25 Most Influential Business Management Books." 7 Habits popularized the concepts of "win/win," "interdependence," and "paradigm shift" in self-help and managerial vocabularies.
posted by catlet at 12:11 PM PST - 41 comments



"Institutions of learning should be devoted to the cultivation of curiosity and the less they are deflected by considerations of immediacy of application, the more likely they are to contribute not only to human welfare but to the equally important satisfaction of intellectual interest which may indeed be said to have become the ruling passion of intellectual life in modern times." -Abraham Flexner, in his 1939 Harper's Article "The Usefulness of Useless Knowledge" (available at Harper's for money or in PDF from the IAS for free)
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 10:55 AM PST - 7 comments


Where Are Your Keys? (WAYK) is a language-learning game that starts with identifying a few simple objects and builds into a conversation dealing with abstract concepts — in the space of an hour or two, with minimal supplies. [more inside]
posted by The demon that lives in the air at 10:20 AM PST - 7 comments

Donald J. Sobol, creator of Encyclopedia Brown, is dead at 87.
posted by mightygodking at 10:14 AM PST - 139 comments

Jennifer Egan's short story Safari can be read at NewYorker.com (~6600 words), or can be read to you in a wonderful performance by Hope Davis (59:00). Jennifer Egan previously.
posted by davidjmcgee at 9:20 AM PST - 20 comments





Alex in the Chelsea Drug Store. A frame-by-frame archeology of the records and magazines in the Chelsea Drug Store scene of A Clockwork Orange. [NSFW]
posted by OmieWise at 5:50 AM PST - 27 comments

"We thought we were hosts like the queen is at a posh garden party, when actually we're hosts in the way that John Hurt is in Alien." As the Olympics approach, the scandals, inconveniences, mistakes and problems keep mounting, ranging from the frustrating through the comic to the tragic. For your appreciation, a picture of the London Olympics 2012. [more inside]
posted by outlier at 2:27 AM PST - 300 comments

July 15

This fanart piece of Disney Princesses as superheroes inspired a group of cosplayers to make it real. Their latest group shot at San Diego Comic-Con features new faces: Jane, Nala, Merida, Giselle, Cinderella, and Wendy. [more inside]
posted by divabat at 10:41 PM PST - 44 comments

Officers in the United States Marine Corps face a long and rigorous selection and training process. First, Officer Candidate School, where they receive their commissions. Then The Basic School, where they are taught the credo: 'Every Marine A Rifleman.' Then, for those who choose and are selected for the infantry, the Infantry Officer's Course. With the 'front lines' of modern combat blurred at best, the United States Marine Corps will begin accepting women for the infantry in September, enrolling them in the Infantry Officer's Course. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:31 PM PST - 133 comments

Indian Dubstep is a fun little dance routine by Gerardam, two brothers from India, Johnnathan and Joshua Gerard. Via Ministry of Manipulation, who say, "... this is what happens when two clowns become excellent dancers." Johnnathan composed the music.
posted by madamjujujive at 7:45 PM PST - 8 comments


The cast of The Book Of Mormon provide the opening number, "Hello", for the 66th Annual Tony Awards. This preceeded the celebrated opening number "What If Life Were More Like Theater?" (previously). But there were many other performances that night... [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 6:43 PM PST - 24 comments


Daily Odd Compliment
posted by jeffburdges at 2:12 PM PST - 24 comments

These each take about 1/2 second but have been expanded to ~30 seconds. I read a book about Tesla awhile ago, and he seemed to view lighting almost like a fluid (and electricity in general). This is a really cool, really interesting way to view it, and the videos here are mesmerizing.
posted by davezor at 1:57 PM PST - 23 comments

"...by persisting in the false belief that coral reefs have a future, we grossly misallocate the funds needed to cope with the fallout from their collapse." In the New York Times, ecologist Roger Bradbury argues that it's too late to save a big chunk of the Earth's environment, and that we should instead spend our resources getting ready for the challenges we'll face once that part of the world is destroyed. Marine scientists offer varying opinions on how doomed the reefs are, ranging from "Yep, they're doomed" to "If we stopped increasing CO2 concentration in the atmosphere today, they would probably stick around in some more or less degraded form" to "it’s clear to me that corals as a group of living things will almost assuredly* construct glorious reefs in millenniums to come of unimaginable richness."
posted by escabeche at 1:00 PM PST - 78 comments

The Cyclops Child is an essay published in Psychology Today by Dr. Frederic Neuman, M. D., detailing the brief life and death of a child born with Holoprosencephaly in the 1960s. Ford Vox, writing for The Atlantic, critiques the essay, and Dr. Neuman has published an addendum in response to the ensuing medical ethics debate.
posted by Chutzler at 10:42 AM PST - 117 comments

A Runner’s Belief: God Is His Coach. [NYTimes.com] "As he prepares for the London Olympics, the marathoner Ryan Hall has embraced an evangelical Christian faith and has found biblical reinforcement for his training."
posted by Fizz at 10:39 AM PST - 158 comments

Swann Galleries is Photographs, Posters, Prints & Drawings, Books, Maps, Autographs, and African-American Fine Art. Served daily. Also. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 10:22 AM PST - 2 comments

Foreign Policy magazine asks, "Can poor people open a Swiss bank account?" (Bad news: You need more than a passport, some pocket change, and a healthy disdain for the IRS.)
posted by wensink at 9:52 AM PST - 40 comments

What is the probability that you are dreaming right now? asks Jan Westerhoff, author of Oxford University Press' Reality: A Very Short Introduction (large excerpts at Google Books). Westerhoff explains that since it's accepted that about 20% of time sleeping is REM (dreaming) sleep, if you sleep 8 hours a night, then 10% of your "conscious" time is actually dream time.* [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 7:11 AM PST - 88 comments

Earlier this year, six scientists and doctors filed a lawsuit against the US Food and Drug Administration alleging that the FDA had secretly monitored their personal e-mail accounts after they (legally) warned Congress that the "agency was approving medical devices that they believed posed unacceptable risks to patients." The agency said it had done so to "investigate allegations that the employees had leaked confidential information to the public." At the time, the FDA indicated their computer monitoring was limited to five scientists. But now, the New York Times is reporting that "what began as a narrow investigation" "quickly grew in mid-2010 into a much broader campaign to counter outside critics of the agency’s medical review process.". [more inside]
posted by zarq at 6:05 AM PST - 29 comments


In "Friends of a Certain Age," the New York Times Style Section examines how life stages affect friendship, citing the college years as America's prime friendship-making time. Why? Because as we get older and "external conditions change, it becomes tougher to meet the three conditions that sociologists since the 1950s have considered crucial to making close friends: proximity; repeated, unplanned interactions; and a setting that encourages people to let their guard down and confide in each other." [more inside]
posted by Violet Blue at 1:44 AM PST - 67 comments

July 14

Banksters this story stretches far beyond Britain. Barclays is the first bank in the spotlight because it offered to co-operate fully with regulators. It will not be the last. Investigations into the fixing of LIBOR and other rates are also under way in America, Canada and the EU. Between them, these probes cover many of the biggest names in finance: the likes of Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, UBS, Deutsche Bank and HSBC. Employees, from New York to Tokyo, are implicated.
The rotten heart of finance. A scandal over key interest rates is about to go global.
Naomi Wolf: The media's 'bad apple' thesis no longer works. This global financial fraud and its gatekeepers.
posted by adamvasco at 9:44 PM PST - 127 comments

Seedling - "an incredibly overt love letter to SNES-era Zelda games" (flash) (via RPS)
posted by Artw at 8:56 PM PST - 16 comments

Offline: Paul Miller, writing for The Verge, is taking a year off from the internet. Among other things, he can't install modern video games and he must figure out how to pay his bills.
posted by secretseasons at 8:45 PM PST - 52 comments

"As the story goes, [George] Daynor was a former gold prospector who’d lost his fortune in the Wall Street crash of 1929. Hitchhiking through Alaska, he was visited by an angel who told him to make his way to New Jersey without further delay. Divine providence had dictated that Daynor was to wait out the Great Depression there, building a castle with his bare hands. Daynor had only four dollars in his pocket when he arrived in Vineland, NJ.... For years he slept in an abandoned car on the mosquito-infested property, living off a steady diet of frogs, fish and squirrels while he built his elaborate eighteen-spired, pastel-hued Palace of Depression out of auto parts and mud. His primary objective? To encourage his downtrodden countrymen to hold onto their hope and stay resourceful, no matter what." [more inside]
posted by jessamyn at 8:45 PM PST - 20 comments

North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un has been appearing in public lately with a mysterious female companion. Speculation (and apparently gambling) continues to surround the matter of her identity, but the prevailing theory at present seems to be that she is one Hyon Song-wol, of Bochonbo Electronic Music Band fame. The internet presents us with her 2005 single "Excellent Horse-like Lady", offering a rare glimpse into the world of North Korean pop music.
posted by passerby at 8:26 PM PST - 87 comments

How Making Love Changed Us. Screenwriter Barry Sandler discusses the legacy of the 1982 gay-themed drama with "The Advocate".
posted by crossoverman at 6:27 PM PST - 14 comments

Willis Earl Beal first found fame when one of his flyers advertising his availability as a potential boyfriend appeared on the cover of Found Magazine in 2007. Over the next couple of years, unemployed and living in his Grandmother's spare room, he recorded an album with cheap and sometimes homemade equipment on a broken karaoke tape machine, which (after a convoluted tale recounted in this article from last year) came to be released, first by Found Magazine themselves in a limited release of 200, and eventually by XL Recordings. Willis Earl Beal performing Evening's Kiss (which is very different from the extremely lo-fi album version) and Swing On Low (album version) on Later With Jools Holland in April 2012.
posted by dng at 6:05 PM PST - 10 comments

A Magazine article on when to take off a wedding ring after a marriage fails generated a large response from readers. The feature asked when it was appropriate to remove the band, and explored the symbolism of doing so. Here, readers share their stories about the dilemma of what to do with a symbol of marriage once the relationship has broken down.
posted by Blasdelb at 4:06 PM PST - 154 comments

The latest record from Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Americana (released June 5, 2012), is a surprising collection of grungy covers of classic American folk songs, many of which are better known for their contemporary use as children's songs or camp songs. Of the record, Neil Young said:
Every one of these songs has verses that have been ignored. And those are the key verses, those are the things that make these songs live. They’re a little heavy for kindergarteners to be singing. The originals are much darker, there’s more protest in them...[cite]
Nevertheless, many of NY&CH's renditions skip some of the juicier bits from the history of these songs' performance. Read on for a listing of tracks with some of their darkest verses. [more inside]
posted by yourcelf at 3:54 PM PST - 30 comments

Pussy Riot is a free-floating (except when jailed) band of punk rockers and activists in Russia. Their punk protest issues include LGBT and gender rights, as well as opposition to Putin and the government. They’re usually anonymous, and they change their assumed and actual names and personnel on a whim. They perform in balaclavas that hide their features, and wear bright-colored tights and plain, skimpy dresses, so anyone can easily don Pussy Riot gear. Hair, makeup, even gender — doesn’t matter. This is not rock star territory. Men can be members of Pussy Riot; so can anyone on the spectrum. They do not perform in clubs or theaters or at music events. Every performance is a guerrilla one. Vice interviews Pussy Riot (before the arrests). Salon reports on the recent detention of three members. Amnesty International page.
posted by infini at 3:42 PM PST - 28 comments

The amazing gif compilations of artist Uno Moralez. (previously) NSFW • satanday niteenlight your conuslustopsyz-boxglitter feedjagged holeshell pray for usHolySmokeRed_Right_HandhorriblethingsOlle gutSGlitSpearlspitQue Seraflowers on venusechosignblackglowrandom frequencystarvation...*clrd
posted by Mrs. Buck Turgidson at 3:24 PM PST - 24 comments

Escape The Red Giant is a Flash game that is both incredibly relaxing and incredibly addictive. [more inside]
posted by motty at 2:36 PM PST - 18 comments

The semicolon sat there in my literary utensil drawer like a cherry pitter, theoretically functional, but fussy and unloved and probably destined for the yard-sale table. Semicolons: A Love Story [NYT]
posted by obscurator at 2:06 PM PST - 47 comments


BrainTripping is an "open-ended internet game of storytelling, parody, personality and poetry" in which one writes sentences (and has conversations) in the voices of famous people through the help of a text generator initialized with a database of their writings.
posted by junco at 1:09 PM PST - 4 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 reprise the theme song and roll the credits at 12:57 PM PST - 144 comments

Pop Philosophy (two twitter novelty accounts)
posted by idiopath at 12:21 PM PST - 8 comments

Robert James Webber is really good with a broom. [slyt] [via]
posted by quin at 11:40 AM PST - 27 comments

8-bit illustrations of opening lines to classic short stories by Kafka, Bukowski, Barthelme, and others. Oliver Miller, the creator of the series, writes: I... love short stories. I was an English major, and then I got an MFA in writing. Before that, I was a nerd who huddled in a basement, with his nerd friends, clicking with a mouse to play Bard’s Tale II. So basically, making 8-bit drawings of short stories encapsulates my whole life and, I hope, yours as well.
posted by Cash4Lead at 11:12 AM PST - 9 comments

RACCOON LOVES KITTY
posted by The Whelk at 10:58 AM PST - 50 comments


Before Kristina från Duvemåla, before Chess, certainly long before Mamma Mia, Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus of ABBA were experimenting with storytelling through music. As part of their 1977 world tour, ABBA closed out their shows with the mini-musical The Girl With The Golden Hair [~25m, illustrative video (not a live filming), 1977 bootleg-quality audio] (full lyrics). [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 7:45 AM PST - 7 comments

35 full-length Viennese Actionist films 1957-1969. *NSFW* (Extreme graphic & scatological situations.) "The term Viennese Actionism describes a short and violent movement in 20th century art that can be regarded as part of the many independent efforts of the 1960s to develop 'action art' (Fluxus, Happening, Performance, Body Art, etc.)." Previously: 1, 2. [more inside]
posted by Skygazer at 3:36 AM PST - 29 comments

July 13

Thanks to lobbying from John Belushi, on Halloween night, 1981, LA punk band Fear played a set on Saturday Night Live. The New York Post headline the next day read "FEAR Riot Leaves Saturday Night Glad To Be Alive.” [more inside]
posted by Bookhouse at 11:44 PM PST - 65 comments

Obscure Records was a U.K. record label which existed from 1975 to 1978. It was created and run by Brian Eno, who also produced the albums (credited as executive producer in one instance). Ten albums were issued in the series. All ten are available for your listening pleasure at Ubuweb.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:51 PM PST - 30 comments

'Los Angeles is home to the nation’s adult novelty business, which is dominated by the Big Four: Topco, California Exotics, Pipedream, and Doc Johnson. Successful niches—leather, men’s masturbators that resemble flashlights—are mined by smaller companies, but as with any industry, owning the market is everything, and Doc Johnson is the Procter & Gamble of sex toys. ' - LA Magazine profiles Doc Johnson(NSFW) [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:51 PM PST - 48 comments

"My friends. I offer you a gift. The true music of my muse - intimate, esoteric, thoughtful. Lyrical and instrumental, possessed of spirit... thee, Harlequine!" [more inside]
posted by Catblack at 8:52 PM PST - 1 comments

Just Another Princess Movie. Lili Loofbourow on Brave. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog at 8:18 PM PST - 106 comments

Science for the people: take a renowned scientist (Nobel Laureate Leon Lederman (Physics), Stephen Benkovik (Chemisty)) and sit them down on a street corner to answer questions.
Also: The No Excuse List (resources to learn just about anything), Minute Physics, Udacity (free, University-level courses online) and PetriDish, a Kickstarter for science projects.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 8:15 PM PST - 7 comments

Lucas Foglia's new book, A Natural Order, is a collection of photographs he took in off the grid communities in Appalachia. Foglia is the son of "back to the earth" parents who farmed, and continue to farm,on Long Island. But the communities he pictures are a step beyond that. You can view some of the beautiful, yet occasionally disturbing, photographs here. Note-a few show nudity. It is also worth looking at his other collection,Front Country, which shows communities where change is occurring in the ranching and mining areas of the American West.
posted by Isadorady at 8:06 PM PST - 28 comments


This website aims to show the wide variety of jobs, careers and callings that deaf and hard of hearing adults are pursuing each day. Interviews with and biographies of deaf and hard of hearing people at work, some of them in careers you might not expect, like a firefighter, a veterinarian, and a comedian.
posted by desjardins at 6:15 PM PST - 10 comments

Comedian Bill Burr drives the streets of three major cities and yaps away. From his bio: "I love my dog. I hate bankers. I have issues with women. In my head, I’m a great guy."
posted by The ____ of Justice at 5:51 PM PST - 8 comments

Bryn Oh is staging an art exhibition called Virginia Alone simultaneously at the Santa Fe New Media Festival and in Second Life (free account required). [more inside]
posted by Deoridhe at 5:43 PM PST - 2 comments


Secrets at Apple's Core A talk by Adam Lashinsky (Fortune's editor at large) about how Apple has become the most admired (and secretive) company in the world.
posted by azarbayejani at 4:31 PM PST - 10 comments

Notes From The Only Man To Die Of Trench Foot In The Media War by Douglas Haddow "If you want to be a freelance writer and maintain a marginally civilized lifestyle, it’s best to keep cozy with anyone who can facilitate the transfer of funds into your wallet. Part-time prostitution is a good gig if you can pick your clients and fetch a decent rate, otherwise, it pays dividends to maintain copywriting credentials and occasionally dip your pen in the company ink."
posted by hoodrich at 4:26 PM PST - 13 comments

How to use your iPhone GPS for backpacking including reviews on most of the relevant GPS, topo, and navigation related apps available for the iPhone.
posted by stp123 at 4:00 PM PST - 31 comments

Man in a Cat. A tiny man living inside a cat gets into a sticky love-triangle.
posted by adrober at 3:53 PM PST - 13 comments

Enter a starting point and an ending point, and get a road trip mix tape created for you featuring music from artists from whatever area you may be driving through. How it works. [more inside]
posted by PapaLobo at 3:19 PM PST - 25 comments

Guardian "I took secret photos of my abortion to empower and educate women: Thisismyabortion.com shows that the reality of abortion is far from the vile and grotesque images used by the pro-life lobby"

Interviews with Vice, Business Insider, Jessica Gottlieb, and Jane Dough. Criticism from Catholic Online, Jill Stanek, the Catholic View for Women, and The Blaze.
posted by andoatnp at 3:03 PM PST - 118 comments

I See What You Did There: Software Uses Video to Infer Game Rules and Achieve Victory Conditions. A French computer scientist has constructed a system that successfully divines the rules to simple games just by using video input of human players at work.
posted by darth_tedious at 2:10 PM PST - 15 comments

French photographer Benoit Cezard, who has lived in Wuhan, Hubei province for six years, suddenly rose to fame on the Internet, after he orchestrated a series of photos in which Caucasians pose as migrant workers in China. Benoit Cezard is convinced that by 2050, China will overtake the United States as the world’s No.1 economy, and as the result, foreigners will come to China for manual and low-paid jobs, such as street vendors and sanitation workers, most of which are currently held by low-cost workers from rural China. text Via Ministry of Tofu shares photos along with Chinese netizen's reactions to the series.
posted by infini at 1:37 PM PST - 17 comments

Super-Resolution From a Single Image presents interactive examples from a 2009 study of methods for increasing the resolution of digital images. [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 1:28 PM PST - 19 comments


Break common writing rules, Lee Child says. The author of the Jack Reacher thrillers tells us to ignore that advice about "Show, don't tell." [more inside]
posted by BibiRose at 12:39 PM PST - 98 comments

Sex In The Olympic Village. Breaking -- world's buffest bodies in biannual bacchanal.
posted by zipadee at 12:17 PM PST - 94 comments

Reddit user and actual wizard bananimator takes us on a quick spin through the city by the bay.
posted by theodolite at 12:09 PM PST - 19 comments

Alan Chambers, president of the "ex-gay" organization Exodus International, has renounced the idea of reparative therapy. [more inside]
posted by Rangeboy at 11:39 AM PST - 42 comments



Was that your phone? Phantom vibrations are something that over two thirds of people experience - the sense that your phone may be vibrating, even when it isn't in your pocket. A few studies have looked into the phenomenon, which might be caused by the conditioning of phone users. And the same sensitivity that allows parents to hear their baby's cry, also makes it easy to think you hear a cell phone ring during a song or commercial.
posted by blahblahblah at 10:45 AM PST - 38 comments

During the presentation of tough new austerity measures at the Spanish parliament, and more specifically of a cut in unemployment benefits (with unemployment currently standing at 24%), and as her fellow conservative MPs clapped, Andrea Fabra yelled "Fuck 'em all!". Hilarity has predictably ensued... [more inside]
posted by Skeptic at 10:31 AM PST - 50 comments

What would Lord Wayne's armor have looked like in the middle ages? Like this. (More pictures here.)
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 10:15 AM PST - 45 comments

Gabriel García Márquez has dementia and can no longer write. According to his brother, Jaime, the Nobel laureate author of One Hundred Years of Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera is suffering side effects from treatment for lymphatic cancer that have accelerated the onset of dementia, which runs in his family. García Márquez has not written anything since his last novel, Memoirs of My Melancholy Whores, in 2007. Among the works left uncompleted will be the second half of his autobiography Living to Tell the Tale.
posted by Cash4Lead at 10:02 AM PST - 40 comments

"Winston Howes, 70, spent a week planting each oak sapling after his wife of 33 years Janet died suddenly 17 years ago."
posted by gilrain at 9:18 AM PST - 36 comments

A new piece for the Awl, by writer Amy Sohn "The 40-Year-Old Reversion" satirizing the group of parents she parties with in Brooklyn, has sparked some pretty harsh criticism around the web, from scenester blogs, mainstream sources, and parenting sites alike. But others see it as a very useful lesson about contraception.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:45 AM PST - 165 comments


...But most of all, I am emerging from this drama with a renewed appreciation for the value of my taxpayer-supported public services. The Berkeley Fire Department did right by me — not only by saving most of my house from burning to the ground, but also by demonstrating real human kindness and connection in the middle of fire and chaos. In the rubble, I found magic. And in a strange way, I feel like I deserved it. In Berkeley, we are addicted to high taxes — in the 25 years I’ve lived here, I can’t even count how many times I and my fellow citizens have said a resounding yes to yet another tax hike or bond measure. Two weeks ago, I got my money’s worth. [more inside]
posted by latkes at 7:55 AM PST - 86 comments


Bob Dylan famously "went electric" at the Newport Folk Festival in 1965. 47 years later, experts believe a woman in New Jersey has the guitar the Dylan played on stage that day. [more inside]
posted by COD at 6:28 AM PST - 46 comments

Edan, "The Humble Magnificent" is a rapper. He's a producer. He's a DJ. He's the complete package. He can cut, scratch, and rock the mic. Oh, did I mention he can do all of those things at once? [more inside]
posted by to sir with millipedes at 5:37 AM PST - 10 comments

Ahoge is a one-day Japanese game jam that takes its name from the "stupid hair" or antenna of anime characters. Every session has a theme; previous ones include Albatross, Oranges, 285, and Travel. The fifth one started a few minutes ago; the theme is "Yoshida", a common surname. [more inside]
posted by 23 at 5:10 AM PST - 2 comments

Rhymez Meanz Beanz (via)
posted by unSane at 4:43 AM PST - 9 comments

Vitamin K2, a fat-soluble vitamin also known as menaquinone, was long thought to be a different version of the more commonly known Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone, best known for its role in clotting). But recent studies have shown that poor Vitamin K2 status is associated with a number of other health issues, including increased risk of coronary artery disease and frature. By directing calcium from soft tissues into your bones, K2 reduces soft-tissue calcificiation, including hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), and increases bone density. [more inside]
posted by pie ninja at 4:03 AM PST - 64 comments

Shaenon K. Garrity, who has more expertise than most with the humorous depiction of the paranormal and government black-ops from her webcomics Narbonic* and Skin Horse** uses it to do a weekly twelve-panel MAD magazine-ish recap of episodes of The X-Files in "Monster of the Week". So far: Pilot or They Haven't Invented the Theme Song Yet, Deep Throat or Deep Throat Is Barely Even In This Episode and Squeeze or The First Monster Of The Week. [more inside]
posted by oneswellfoop at 12:40 AM PST - 18 comments

"Though now almost forgotten, the case of “the Chickens and the Bulls” as the NYPD called it (or “Operation Homex,” to the FBI), still stands as the most far-flung, most organized, and most brazen example of homosexual extortion in the nation’s history. And while the Stonewall riot in June 1969 is considered by many to be the pivotal moment in gay civil rights, this case represents an important crux too, marking the first time that the law enforcement establishment actually worked on behalf of victimized gay men, instead of locking them up or shrugging." [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 12:12 AM PST - 19 comments

July 12

You're a Monk, I'm a Monk, We're All Monks is a short video introduction to The Monks, a band founded in 1964 by five American soldiers in Germany. They put out only one album, the abrasive, noisy, minimalistic Black Monk Time in 1965, that sounded like nothing else at the time. They also dressed in all-black, shaved monkish tonsures in their hair and wore bits of rope as neckties. In 1966 they appeared on German TV shows Beat-Club and Beat, Beat, Beat, and played three songs on each, Boys Are Boys and Girls Are Choice, Monk Chant, Oh, How to Do Now, Complication, I Can't Get Over You and Cuckoo. Aaron Poehler interviewed The Monks and wrote about their history back in 1999. That same year they got back together to play at the Cavestomp festival. And here The Monks are being interviewed by a hand-puppet on public access television in Chicago. [The Monks previously on MetaFilter]
posted by Kattullus at 8:50 PM PST - 49 comments

"Digg Inc., a social-media pioneer once valued at more than $160 million, is selling for the deeply discounted price of about $500,000." [more inside]
posted by SpacemanStix at 7:20 PM PST - 111 comments

"When Art, Apple and the Secret Service Collide: ‘People Staring at Computers’ ": A year ago (previously on MetaFilter), Kyle McDonald created an art project that landed him in some trouble with Apple and the attention of the US Secret Service. He writes about it for WIRED. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:17 PM PST - 32 comments

Tortoise chases dog FUNNY
posted by griphus at 6:39 PM PST - 58 comments

Errol Morris (previously) would like to know if you are an optimist or a pessimist. [more inside]
posted by Doktor Zed at 6:20 PM PST - 28 comments

What’s eating Appalachia? 'Democrats in the region seem to hate their president. Keith Judd, a convict serving a 17-year sentence for extortion in a Texan jail' 'won 58% of the vote in Hardy County to Barack Obama’s 42%. Mr Judd’s victory was not a freak result: Democrats in a further nine counties in West Virginia judged a resident of the Federal Correctional Institution in Texarkana a better standard-bearer for their party than the current occupant of the White House.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 5:36 PM PST - 76 comments

Canada's Supreme Court has ruled on 5 copyright-related issues.
Internet providers do not have to pay copyright fees when their consumers download or preview music, and teachers don't have to pay fees when they photocopy copyrighted materials for their students. [more inside]
posted by Twang at 5:36 PM PST - 25 comments

Journalist Chris Hedges and Illustrator Joe Sacco have co-authored Days of Destruction, Days of Revolt about life in the ‘sacrifice zones’ in the American Dream.
Camden, New Jersey where:
The poor have to help the poor, because the ones who make the money are helping the people with money.
And from West Virginia: The Story of Rudy the Miner, with text.
An interview with Hedges.
(Mountain coal rape previously 1; 2).
posted by adamvasco at 5:06 PM PST - 31 comments

Five Seconds and Patient are two new videos from Twin Shadow that tell the story of a motorcycle gang called The Teds. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 3:49 PM PST - 13 comments


Single-serving website to see if your credentials were compromised in the recent posting online of "usernames and passwords for what appeared to be 453,492 accounts belonging to Yahoo, but also Gmail, AOL, Hotmail, Comcast, MSN, SBC Global, Verizon, BellSouth and Live.com users." [via mefi projects]
posted by davidjmcgee at 1:31 PM PST - 83 comments

"Truman told Jack that he was frankly surprised that anyone who knew him well did not immediately recognize the inspiration behind Holly Golightly. And yet, everyone seems to agree that the true identity of Holly Golightly, nee Lula Mae Barnes, is a great mystery, and that her true inspiration can never be known. Well, that was yesterday, this is today. I’m here to clear that up. Spoiler: it was Truman’s mom. Mystery solved. Let’s break this down and find all the parallels between the two, if their virtually identical birth names were not enough." Lillie Mae Faulk – The Real Holly Golightly, from The Gloss's Shelved Dolls series. [more inside]
posted by taz at 11:02 AM PST - 27 comments


Report finds Penn State president, Paterno concealed facts about Sandusky sex abuse: "Penn State football coach Joe Paterno and other university leaders 'repeatedly concealed critical facts' relating to assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky’s child sex abuse from authorities, according to Louis Freeh, the former FBI director who conducted an investigation [PDF] for the university in the Sandusky scandal." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 8:01 AM PST - 405 comments

Atlas for the Blind, 1837: "From the spectacular David Rumsey Map Collection, the 1837 “Atlas of the United States Printed for the Use of the Blind“, embossed heavy paper featuring lines, letters and geographical symbols, destined to help blind children to visualise geography. Here’s the whole book with zoomable pages." [Via: Socks-Studio]
posted by Fizz at 7:39 AM PST - 19 comments

RRRRRRRROLL
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:32 AM PST - 65 comments

Is legalization or at least ending the war on drugs a solution to gang violence? Drug Business is not the Key to Gangs And Organized Crime: With a Prognosis for the Mexican Cartel Wars explores the idea of gangs and other crime organizations as mainly political actors. (previous mention of sociologist Randall Collins)
posted by patrick54 at 7:29 AM PST - 30 comments

Yesterday, a New York Redditor was approached by a shaggy man and handed a $50 bill and a cryptic note. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 7:12 AM PST - 244 comments

Letter from the Pulitzer Fiction Jury: What Really Happened This Year. Michael Cunningham on what it was like to serve on the fiction jury for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize, when no prize was awarded. Part 2. (Previously.)
posted by OmieWise at 7:07 AM PST - 63 comments

In 1992, renowned sci-fi author and futurist William Gibson (Neuromancer, Virtual Light) released Agrippa (A Book of the Dead), a self-playing poem contained on a floppy disk for old Macintosh computers that, once its text had scrolled up the screen one time, would be rendered unreadable on purpose. Now, 20 years later, a PhD student at the University of Toronto is enlisting the aid of cryptographers in hopes of figuring out how the program works. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 6:59 AM PST - 24 comments


Yesterday would have been the 113th birthday of EB White. He is probably best known for one of two enduring classics: Charlotte's Web, or (as the reviser and co-author of the widely-used English language style guide, Strunk & White's) The Elements of Style. [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 6:08 AM PST - 54 comments

"You really learn to look..and suddenly you begin to see wonderful things in your daily life... its one of the most wonderful presents you get in an art education: to enjoy seeing." -Inge Druckrey: Teaching to See. Brought to you by Edward Tufte. (single link vimeo)
posted by AceRock at 6:02 AM PST - 4 comments

Today marks the end of an era as the BBC World Service broadcasts for the last time from its longtime home at Bush House. [more inside]
posted by orthicon halo at 2:26 AM PST - 38 comments

July 11


Is the Web Driving Us Mad? (Newsweek, cover) Evidence wise, the verdict isn't looking good. The proof is starting to pile up. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 11:27 PM PST - 112 comments

"The last European monopoly, in any area, is crumbling. This recently-opened transfer window has underscored, more than anything else, that it is no longer the European football clubs’ birthright to sign the greatest players in the world." -- Leander Schaerlaeckens on the growing clout of Chinese, Brazilian, and (WTF?) Indian soccer leagues in grabbing the top talent
posted by bardic at 10:13 PM PST - 24 comments

Carly Rae Jepsen based "Call Me Maybe" on Annie Lennox's "Walking on Broken Glass". Rostam Batmanglij of Vampire Weekend (wiki) mashed the two together: "Call Me on Broken Glass". (Bonus Lennox mashup link: "Sweet Dreams" vs. "Can't Touch This" and many others).
posted by WCityMike at 8:52 PM PST - 43 comments

Ze Frank previously and Rainn Wilson talk about the Teen Brain.
posted by lazaruslong at 8:44 PM PST - 28 comments


Nice looking and sounding diy bass made with a C64. (SLYT). At first I thought she was just using the body of the thing, but there is some C64 goodness in the sound as well.
posted by not_that_epiphanius at 6:53 PM PST - 30 comments

'E-Diplomacy map shows which leaders talk to each other on Twitter. AFP news agency releases interactive tool showing how Twitter plays out globally,' from Ars Technica [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 6:48 PM PST - 4 comments

Underwater Photography by Elena Kalis. This is just one of her projects, other collections can be found here.
posted by HuronBob at 6:40 PM PST - 7 comments

Robbie is a short film assembled from NASA archive footage.
posted by anigbrowl at 5:38 PM PST - 9 comments

Viacom pulls free Daily Show and Colbert Report from the web. The move comes after satellite broadcaster DirecTV stopped carrying Viacom's cable channels Tuesday night. One of DirecTV's issues with Viacom is the amount of content the cable programmer puts online for free. DirecTV and other distributors fear that giving programs away online undermines the pay-TV business model. As if sitting through hundreds of this was not price enough to pay.
posted by Danf at 4:52 PM PST - 112 comments

A line-by-line legal analysis of verse 2 of Jay-Z's 99 Problems [PDF], published in the law review of St. Louis University, is a surprisingly enlightening take on Fourth Amendment rights during a traffic stop. Jay-Z is right in submitting to a show of authority and refusing to consent to a search, but he is wrong in assuming that a warrant is needed to search a locked trunk or glovebox. However, Jay-Z would probably be able to suppress evidence of the drugs in his car, even if they are found, because he had to wait while the K-9 comes. He's got 99 problems but a female sniffer dog isn't one. Hit me.
posted by blahblahblah at 4:48 PM PST - 58 comments


Back in December American Conservative talked about The Changing state of War stating:
One of the most discouraging aspects of the current Republican presidential candidate debates is the discussion of drone warfare, or rather the fact that it is not being discussed at all except to approve of the practice.
Tom Junod of Esquire now discusses in a long article the targeted killing of an American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki. [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 4:07 PM PST - 154 comments

The WritersDiet Test , created by Dr. Helen Sword, allows you to enter a writing sample of 100 to 1000 words and have it graded from "lean" to "heart attack" on its level of excess verbiage.
posted by shivohum at 3:55 PM PST - 39 comments

Netflix's lost year: The inside story of the price-hike train wreck.
Leading up to the first anniversary of the Netflix meltdown, CNET interviewed former and current Netflix employees to find out how a series of missteps turned into a lost year, and whether it has rebounded from those self-inflicted wounds.
posted by kirkaracha at 3:19 PM PST - 115 comments

Transit etiquette of yesteryear (courtesy of the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) and blogto.com). We may no longer think that shoppers - inevitably depicted as women - have no place on the rush hour streetcar, but some things never change. Move to the back of the car, please!
posted by jb at 2:26 PM PST - 63 comments

Composer Dr. Richard Eigner put together a group of musicians to jam on a bunch of improvised instruments made out of credit cards. slyt via andrewsullivan
posted by andoatnp at 1:39 PM PST - 10 comments


Why You’re Not Friends With Your Neighbors. 'After building neighborhood social networks in more than 3,000 communities across the U.S., Nirav Tolia has learned just how many different things neighbors can accomplish. Using Nextdoor, the site built by Tolia and his team, neighbors get burglars arrested, investigate possible water poisoning, and stop the installation of parking meters. They lend one another ladders and grills, recommend babysitters, and upload videos of locals. But the one thing they’re not looking to do is make friends.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 12:14 PM PST - 76 comments

Historic Detroit - some urban architectural history in a nice online format. [more inside]
posted by Miko at 11:55 AM PST - 6 comments

Hockey highlights with soccer announcers. Come for the highlights, stay for the Scottish broadcaster's analogies.
posted by dry white toast at 11:53 AM PST - 15 comments


Moises Kaufman can kiss my a** The La Jolla Playhouse production of Broadway-bound "The Nightingale", about the Emperor of feudal China, will boast zero actors of Chinese descent. Actress Erin Quill responds.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:51 AM PST - 153 comments

Brian Cullman was a young American journalist in London when he met Nick Drake through musician John Martyn. This is an interesting look at a very fragile artist who left a deep legacy. And the song Cullman quotes
posted by Isadorady at 9:24 AM PST - 8 comments

Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney just took his case to the NAACP. This satirical look at Mitt's prep session.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:18 AM PST - 447 comments

Camille Seaman likes to take pictures of storms. Big, beautiful, terrifying storms. [more inside]
posted by pdq at 8:50 AM PST - 29 comments


Classic movies in miniature style. It all started 2 years ago with an experiment to blend traditional ‘oriental’ (Ottoman) motifs and contemporary ‘western’ cinema. After a positive response to "Ottoman Star Wars", I decided to take the theme further, and developed more film posters using the same technique.
posted by shakespeherian at 7:41 AM PST - 19 comments

Through a spasm of serendipity whose mechanism I cannot begin to fathom, two inarguable masterpieces of Eastern European science fiction - Solaris by Stanislaw Lem and Roadside Picnic by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky - have recently been accorded fresh translations. In this posting I would like to briefly consider the virtues of these new versions [...] [more inside]
posted by smcg at 6:50 AM PST - 51 comments

Bullying & Goodreads: "Little more than a week ago, a website aimed at naming and shaming so-called Goodreads [A kind of facebook for bibliophiles.] ‘bullies’ suddenly appeared online – called, appropriately enough, Stop the GR Bullies. Run by four concerned ‘readers and bloggers’ writing anonymously under the handles Athena, Peter Pan, Johnny Be Good and Stitch, the site thus far seems bent on punishing the creators of snide, snarky and negative book reviews by posting their handles, real names, locations and photos in one place, together with a warning about their supposed ‘level of toxicity’ and some (ironically) snide, snarky and negative commentary about them as people. There’s a lot here to unpack, but before I get started on why this is a horrifically bad idea, let’s start with some basic context."
posted by Fizz at 6:19 AM PST - 178 comments

First Class was a titanic "electronic" tea time BBC general knowledge quiz show in the late 1980s, presented by heartthrob Debbie Greenwood (now a regular on QVC UK) with the aid of a BBC Micro called Eugene. Two teams of teenagers represented their schools as they battled for supremacy playing a random selection of arcade games like skateboarder 720 degrees and Hypersports, the ultimate prize an Acorn Archimedes. Now, the nail-biting encounter between Armthorpe School in Sheffield and Montagu School of Kettering is on YouTube [parts 1, 2 & 3]
posted by feelinglistless at 3:35 AM PST - 16 comments

The 7 best behind-the-scenes Star Wars photos. (More photos here, and here.)
posted by Artw at 12:05 AM PST - 55 comments

July 10

As the world gets warmer from global warming more people use air conditioning which increases Co2 emissions which increases the warmth of the world which causes more people to use AC... this positive feedback loop turns out to be non-trivial. Cooling a Warming Planet: A Global Air Conditioning Surge. Some facts about air conditioning and the environment, by Stan Cox. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 11:13 PM PST - 112 comments

We're not here for your inspiration says Stella Young on the ABC's "Ramp Up" disability gateway.
Pictures of people with disabilities going about our everyday lives posted on facebook and twitter as "inspiration porn" shame and objectify those of us they pretend to represent.
posted by wilful at 10:37 PM PST - 49 comments

March 21, 1927, Marble Arch Pavilion, London. Fritz Lang's Metropolis receives its British premiere, and the audience was handed programs on their way into the auditorium. Today, only three copies are known to survive. Fortunately for us, the entire program is available to read online.
posted by hippybear at 9:44 PM PST - 11 comments



After I called out to him, Tosh paused for a moment. Then, he says, “Wouldn’t it be funny if that girl got raped by like, 5 guys right now? Like right now? What if a bunch of guys just raped her…”
Daniel Tosh has more or less apologized after a Tumblr user posted a friend's experience at one of his recent shows. But the controversy has now somehow drawn in Louis C.K., who posted an apparent message of support for Tosh on Twitter the same week a date-rape-themed episode of Louie aired on FX. C.K. has also broached heckling on Louie [NSFW], and had previously defended Tracy Morgan in a similarly charged situation. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog at 8:22 PM PST - 847 comments

Could the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier from The Avengers movie actually fly? Last link does the math and has homework.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:50 PM PST - 58 comments

"It's the 21ist century--why are we working so much?" In which Owen Hatherley exhumes the humiliated, expired idea that the reduction of work is a worthwhile goal. "If there's one thing practically all futurologists once agreed on, it's that in the 21st century there would be a lot less work. What would they have thought, if they had known that in 2012, the 9-5 working day had in the UK become something more like 7am to 7pm? They would surely have looked around and seen technology take over in many professions which previously needed heavy manpower, they would have looked at the increase in automation and mass production, and wondered – why are they spending 12 hours a day on menial tasks?" [more inside]
posted by byanyothername at 5:28 PM PST - 106 comments

Inklewriter allows you to create and share branching, interactive stories online; complete with a light smattering of conditionals, counters and other tools to keep it interesting.
posted by Sparx at 5:16 PM PST - 3 comments

Your Breasts Are Trying To Kill You: Slate reviews Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History by Florence WIlliams (an edited excerpt from the book re: breast milk in The Guardian - includes breastfeeding photo). NPR interview with Williams (41 min. audio and text highlights); a brief interview with Williams in The Star and a long interview in Maclean's. A recent piece by Williams in Slate: A new set of reports shows that federal policy on chemicals testing neglects breast health. Subject found via a post on IBTP discussing the ban, and then partial retraction of that ban, on allowing breast cancer survivor Jodi Jaecks to swim topless at a Seattle public pool - includes topless photo. Some may consider the photos noted NSFW.
posted by flex at 4:44 PM PST - 19 comments

The First Photo on the Web: A story of crossdressing, particle physics, humorous science-based novelty songs, and terrible photoshop.
posted by The Whelk at 4:31 PM PST - 14 comments

THE VANISHING: 'In the stunning and remote wilderness along northern British Columbia’s Highway 16, at least 18 women—by some estimates, many more—have gone missing over the past four decades. After years of investigation, authorities still don’t know if it’s the work of a serial killer or multiple offenders. BOB FRIEL drives into the darkness for answers.' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:34 PM PST - 33 comments

Guerrilla art group hacks dozens of Astral info pillars. The city's new, redesigned info pillars that have been rapidly popping up around Toronto have made plenty of enemies: road users claim the large, flat sides block sight lines, pedestrians say their positioning blocks sidewalks, and many others are concerned about the large amount of space given over to advertisers. A team of artists, cARTographyTO, hacked into roughly 35 of the signs' ad spaces over the weekend and installed maps, artwork and other visual displays.
posted by netbros at 1:43 PM PST - 50 comments

Call Your Girlfriend done by Lennon (age 12) and Maisy (age 8). A cappella with margarine container accompaniment.
posted by sonika at 12:07 PM PST - 115 comments

SSL vs. The Universe A few concessions were made in the creation and visualization of these materials. The Big Bang shown is simply an artistic interpretation of the event. Most experts agree that there was no giant “explosion” at the start of time. The math.
posted by OmieWise at 11:51 AM PST - 47 comments

Lance Armstrong: Victim? The embattled cyclist says USADA is out to get him—using powers that it really shouldn’t have. Brian Alexander says he’s right.
posted by fixedgear at 11:39 AM PST - 122 comments

Dennis Flemion, founding member of the band The Frogs, has reportedly drowned. [more inside]
posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 10:14 AM PST - 32 comments

ESPN: The Body Issue 2012 (nsfw)
posted by Cloud King at 10:07 AM PST - 131 comments

If Websites Were People: Etsy. Tumblr. Fox News. Jezebel. Gawker. WebMD. Groupon. (MLYT)
posted by DarlingBri at 9:31 AM PST - 218 comments

Cookie Monster is going crazy. So share your cookie maybe? SLYT
posted by Uncle at 9:23 AM PST - 46 comments

DC and Ken Block present Gymkhana FIVE: Ultimate Urban Playground; San Francisco -- Or what happens when a drifting master gets free reign over SF streets. I have been wondering who put those donut-shaped tread marks on the Bay Bridge. Previously... Previouslier... Previousliest
posted by cman at 8:23 AM PST - 69 comments

It's been a big week for high speed rail proponents and infrastructure hawks. This week, the California Legislature approved startup funds for the $68 billion high-speed line linking San Diego to San Francisco and Sacramento and points in between. Today, Amtrak unvelied its $151 billion plan (PDF) for the Northeast Corridor. Both will take decades to complete. Detractors worry about exploding costs and operating losses, while supporters stress jobs, mobility, and international competitiveness. Europe and Japan have lapped us a few times over. However, those who want to do this quickly and cheaply might want to take a lesson from once-ambitious China.
posted by moammargaret at 8:06 AM PST - 245 comments

Un Petit plat pour l’Homme (A Small Dish For Man) is a cute animated short by Corentin Charron which looks at dining in space. [via]
posted by quin at 7:40 AM PST - 5 comments

Clam Eating Salt On Table [YouTube]
posted by Burhanistan at 6:47 AM PST - 149 comments

"About six weeks ago at a zoo in Sochi, Russia, an Amur tiger - one of the rarest tigers on the planet - gave birth to a pair of cubs. The zoo, of course, was thrilled, but its joy soon faded - the mother wouldn't feed her babies. Fortunately, the zoo found a woman, Yekaterina Khodakova, whose Shar Pei Cleopatra had recently had a litter of puppies. Cleopatra immediately accepted the tiger cubs as her own, and began nursing them. Now the Amur cubs, dubbed Clyopa and Plyusha, think they're dogs."
posted by davidjmcgee at 5:52 AM PST - 116 comments


When was the last time you finished a video game? The case for movie-length, narrative video games. [more inside]
posted by 23 at 5:15 AM PST - 96 comments

David and the Dorks (aka Jerry and the Jets) played one rehearsal, 4 sets at the Matrix nightclub in San Francisco (Dec. 15, 16, 17 and 20, 1970), and one show at Pepperland in San Rafael on Dec. 21. Lineup: David Crosby, Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh, and Mickey Hart (or was it Bill Kreutzmann? Or both?). Setlists. Shows. Analysis. Songs inside. [more inside]
posted by msalt at 12:10 AM PST - 14 comments

July 9

Neal Stephenson's Kickstarter project for a realistic sword-fighting video game has just been funded successfully. Clang is meant to be played with a motion controller and aims to represent certain historical fighting styles as accurately as possible. [more inside]
posted by tykky at 11:48 PM PST - 44 comments

It is a sad day in New Orleans. At the age of 80, Uncle Lionel has passed on. Uncle Lionel was the long-time bass drummer and sometime singer for New Orleans favorites the Treme Brass Band. (Watch the Treme Brass band playing one of their standards, "It Ain't My Fault".) Known to many as The Best-Dressed Man in New Orleans, he was a legendary and universally-loved fixture of the New Orleans music scene. Here is a video of him partying down at Sydney's Saloon on St. Bernard Ave, age 78. Here he plays drum and sings Let Me Call You Sweetheart at the Palm Court Jazz Cafe, earlier this year. And finally, here he is with Monty Banks singing Do You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans? at the Spotted Cat in 2009. Funeral arrangements have not been announced, but rest assured there will be one hell of second line the day they lay Uncle Lionel down.
posted by Scientist at 9:51 PM PST - 29 comments

The Ones We've Lost: The Student Loan Debt Suicides: "I'm an advocate for people who are struggling to pay their student loans, and I've been receiving suicidal comments for over two years and occasionally receiving reports of actual suicides".
posted by ActionPopulated at 8:45 PM PST - 188 comments

Photographer Ann Marsden passed away last night. Much of Marsden's work depicted the theater and arts in the twin cities of Minneapolis–Saint Paul, Minnesota. Her best friend, Lisa Nebenzahl, was documenting Marsden's losing battle with cervical cancer with photographs. Those simple and powerful photos are posted here.
posted by HuronBob at 8:03 PM PST - 9 comments

Alex Jansen is a lieutenant in the US Army currently deployed in Afghanistan. He is embedded as a liaison officer working with and training the Afghan National Army. He's been taking photos of his experiences and posting them on the Pentax forums, offering a different view of the life of soldiers in Afghanistan. Forum posts: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 [more inside]
posted by jontyjago at 5:47 PM PST - 44 comments

Last night at TNA iMPACT Wrestling's annual Destination X pay-per-view, Austin Aries defeated Bobby Roode to win the TNA Heavyweight Title. Meanwhile, in the WWE, CM Punk (previously on the blue) is currently the WWE champion and feuding with Daniel Bryan (seen here wrestling Sheamus for the World Heavyweight Title prior to his feud with Punk). And wrestling news sites today were abuzz with the news that the WWE has offered a developmental contract to Sara Del Rey, the "Queen of Wrestling," who has made a name for herself by wrestling men on equal terms. What do Aries, Punk, Bryan and Del Rey all have in common? They're all alumni of Ring of Honor. [more inside]
posted by mightygodking at 5:19 PM PST - 53 comments

1. Save sound file as raw. 2. Open raw in graphics editing program.
posted by brundlefly at 5:17 PM PST - 69 comments

The Aikiu's new music video "Pieces of Gold" cleverly transforms porn actors into... very intense studio musicians.
posted by hermitosis at 4:48 PM PST - 26 comments

The Ex-Lax Fish. "Talking to the fish guy convinced me that Escolar was the way to go . . . . But something I never thought ask would have been the most important question: 'Does this fish cause anal leakage?'" [more inside]
posted by cybercoitus interruptus at 4:48 PM PST - 54 comments

"Maintaining this level of surveillance is very burdensome for companies. According to the letters, AT&T has more than 100 full time employees assigned just to handle law enforcement requests, Verizon has 70, and Sprint has a whopping 226. That’s a lot of people power devoted solely to surveillance." Mobile Phone Surveillance by the Numbers.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:25 PM PST - 38 comments

‘In 2005 Sci-Fi Channel announced that it would make a sequel to The Thing with Shawshank Redemption/The Mist director Frank Darabont serving as a producer. This earlier Thing sequel project was to be a four-hour mini-series written by Darabont’s former assistant David Leslie Johnson and broadcast on the cable channel.’ The Return of The Thing screenplay reviewed: Part 1, Part 2. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:23 PM PST - 45 comments

A fun photo set of drunk 20 year olds touring the Motor City in 1982 and taking pictures.
posted by zzazazz at 2:33 PM PST - 45 comments

Comedian Myq Kaplan starts a Kickstarter to Figure Out What Kickstarter Considers Art. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 2:12 PM PST - 68 comments

Texts from Jane Eyre. Texts from Scarlett O'Hara. On a more serious note, Text Messages From A Ghost and The Return of Ghost. (Mallory Ortberg for The Hairpin)
posted by maryr at 12:36 PM PST - 27 comments


Four Men. Forty Years. An interview with Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty and Ronny Cox about Deliverance, on the film's 40th anniversary. Additional interviews: Collider. THR
posted by zarq at 11:49 AM PST - 47 comments

"Shut Up and Dance’s 1991 hardcore LP ‘Dance Before the Police Come’ was released at a time when the UK authorities were struggling to contain the massive explosion of raves. Thousands of people each weekend were playing a cat and mouse game with the police to party in fields and warehouses, and if the state was often outwitted by meeting points in motorway service stations and convoys of cars, it tried to keep the lid on the phenomenon by staging high profile raids."
Dance before the police come: a social history, covering UK (and US) raves, queer activism, morality police (both figurative and literal) and racial discrimination. [more inside]
posted by Len at 11:48 AM PST - 14 comments

What to Make of Finnegans Wake? by Michael Chabon
posted by OmieWise at 11:47 AM PST - 52 comments

Go for a 1st-person ride at Rolex with Doug Payne and Running Order Here's a nifty window into the world of 3-day eventing; the triathlon of the equestrian sports world [Previously] beware, video maybe vertigo and/or habit forming; OP not held accountable for time spent down the rabbithole linking thru Doug's many other wonderful helmet-cam rides & analyses. [more inside]
posted by lonefrontranger at 11:14 AM PST - 20 comments



The New Elitists (NYT) - "...omnivores seem highly distinct and their tastes appear to be a matter of personal expression. Instead of liking things like opera because that’s what people of your class are supposed to like, the omnivore likes what he likes because it is an expression of a distinct self. Perhaps liking a range of things explains why elites are elite, and not the other way around. By contrast, those who have exclusive tastes today — middle-class and poorer Americans — are subject to disdain. If the world is open and you don’t take advantage of it, then you’re simply limited and closed-minded. Perhaps it’s these attributes that explain your incapacity to succeed." [more inside]
posted by flex at 9:14 AM PST - 128 comments

The creator of OK Cupid Enemies (nsfw) and the creator of Webcam Tears have a conversation.
posted by the young rope-rider at 8:53 AM PST - 34 comments



From the story of the lost comet that came too close for comfort, to the radioactive eagle scout who simply wanted to complete his collection, there is more than enough here (the scandalous history of Union general Daniel Sickles) to fill any long summer day with historical marvels. [more inside]
posted by TreeRooster at 7:10 AM PST - 8 comments

As reported in this article in the Guardian, a US appeals court recently ruled that confidential oral history interviews given by former members of Northern Irish paramilitary groups to researchers from Boston College are not confidential. [more inside]
posted by naturalog at 6:47 AM PST - 69 comments

Rotten Tomatoes asks some of the biggest names in Hollywood: Name Your Five Favorite Films. Browse at the link or click on people of possible interest below the fold. [more inside]
posted by dgaicun at 6:23 AM PST - 248 comments

To celebrate John Cage's centenary, 10 pieces of music by 10 different composers have been created, inspired by 10 places close to the Royal Albert Hall. [more inside]
posted by smcg at 5:14 AM PST - 12 comments


July 8

Chagas' disease can cast a silent, lifelong shadow. 'Chagas is a potentially fatal parasitic disease most often found in Latin American immigrants. There had been little awareness of it in the U.S., but' it is slowly making its way into the United States. 'Chagas affects an estimated 300,000 people in this country and about 13 million worldwide, chiefly in Latin America, where it is a leading cause of heart failure.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 10:45 PM PST - 30 comments

After leading several expeditions into Tunisia to visit the filming locations for Tatooine landmarks, tour guide Mark Dermul was dismayed by the state of the Owen Lars homestead. A joke about restoring it turned into serious thought which led to fundraising and planning and delays due to social unrest, and finally in June, the "Igloo" was restored to its former glory.
posted by hippybear at 9:42 PM PST - 40 comments

After spending $5 billion dollars to develop the Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP), the US Army is abandoning the grey-green pixelated camouflage because it has routinely failed to hide soldiers from view in nearly every environment it has been tried in, and considers adopting the UCP "a colossal mistake" and a "fiasco". [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 8:47 PM PST - 171 comments

motor life blog is Charlie Beesly's fun collection of (mostly) found photos celebrating cars and their owners. Don't miss the winsome training wheels post and the early Kodacolor collection. We've seen some of Charlie's other themed found photos here previously.
posted by madamjujujive at 7:06 PM PST - 5 comments

During the Global LGBT Workplace Summit of July 5 and 6, 2012 in London, Google announced the "Legalize Love" campaign . Launched in Poland and Singapore and eventually intended for every country where the company has an office, it will focus on places with homophobic cultures, where anti-gay laws exist. [more inside]
posted by Morrigan at 6:01 PM PST - 90 comments

"At PSFK Conference NYC, Vikram Gandhi spoke about his latest movie Kumaré - The True Story of A False Prophet. While he was born in New Jersey, the film director spoke about how he had been noticing how the Indian-heritage culture he had experienced as he grew up, was being used by Americans and other Westerners to help solve their emotional and spiritual issues. To explore this idea further he dressed up as a guru, created a backstory with YouTube video and website, spoke like his grandmother and recruited followers in Arizona. What's unique is that throughout the film is that he tells everyone he was an illusion and asks his followers to look in a mirror to solve their own problems." [more inside]
posted by vidur at 5:15 PM PST - 42 comments

All the Presidents' menus
posted by gaspode at 4:55 PM PST - 73 comments

Alcoholics Anonymous and similar 12-step programs have recently attracted calls to review their long-standing policies: supporting young people, rethinking transphobia, welcoming agnostic viewpoints, and challenging the need for anonymity. [more inside]
posted by divabat at 4:54 PM PST - 156 comments

In Canada an active duty RCMP officer is under investigation for posting sexually explicit photos on the private Fetlife service. Further details of the alleged photos seem to describe a relatively hardcore but completely consensual male/female bondage scenario. [more inside]
posted by thewalrus at 4:23 PM PST - 86 comments

Cuteypietiffany is a video blogger and Tgirl documenting her transition experience. She talks about coming out at work and to her friends, taking hormones, dealing with mood swings, and the anxiety of switching in and out of boy mode.
posted by Catchfire at 4:21 PM PST - 9 comments

"Local marine experts believed the problem could be solved only if it could be determined why the sharks were venturing so close to the beaches. This meant finding someone with the knowledge, expertise, and courage to spend an extended period of time in the water with the animals themselves, unraveling the mystery. They called Belgian Fred Buyle, the world's foremost shark tagger, a gifted free-diver able to hold his breath for seven minutes and swim to depths below 300 feet." Meet The Shark Whisperer [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 3:10 PM PST - 13 comments

Ernest Borgnine, Oscar-winning actor whose career spanned 60 years, died today at the age of 95. Born in Hamden, Connecticut to Italian immigrants, Borgnine spent 10 years in the Navy before trying his hand act acting at the behest of his mother. After making his acting debut on Broadway in 'Harvey', Borgnine's big movie break came in From Here to Eternity in 1953. This was followed in 1953 by an Oscar for his role in Marty. Some of Borgnine's other memorable performances included roles in Bad Day at Black Rock, The Wild Bunch, Ice Station Zebra, The Dirty Dozen, and The Poseidon Adventure. [more inside]
posted by CosmicRayCharles at 3:08 PM PST - 124 comments


Former all pro NFL running back, 38 year old Priest Holmes feels that all NFL players suffer from the violence of the game, but believes running backs are at an increased risk if they average dozens of carries a game for years at a time. Holmes recalled how hits changed the color of the sky. Another former NFL running back, 32 year old Jamal Lewis talked about his memory losses and head trauma. Both men could encounter the cognitive decline lesser known former Chargers running back 45 year old Steve Hendrickson has experienced. [more inside]
posted by cashman at 1:03 PM PST - 68 comments

But it is already too late. CNN has been carefully orchestrating its transformation into a shockingly efficient news distribution company. They have been planning to saturate every screen in reach with this story as fast as possible, and the producer’s initial go-ahead pulled the trigger. On the air, Wolf Blitzer is sending the coverage to the Courthouse steps. And as planned the reporter is putting her phone down to go on the air, which cuts herself off from the only CNN employee with access to the opinion. We’re getting wildly differing assessments: SCOTUSblog compiles first-hand accounts of the minutes between 10:06 and 10:15am on June 28, when CNN and FOX misreported and retracted that the mandate had been struck down.
posted by youarenothere at 11:44 AM PST - 75 comments

"Kansas City gets the All-Star Game, and it’s likely that this will be the last time Kansas City will be in the national sports spotlight for a long time." Joe Posnanski on the downfall and charm of Kansas City, which "used to be in the spotlight with regularity. There have been 10 Final Fours here, more than any other city. The NCAA was based here. There were two World Series here, a Davis Cup semifinal, numerous NFL playoff games including the Christmas Day game that is one of the best ever played. Tom Watson stayed here, so did George Brett ... But times have changed. Unless something dramatic changes -- and it almost certainly won’t -- there won’t ever be a Super Bowl here, a U.S. Open here, another Final Four here. There’s a beautiful arena downtown that was built largely for an NBA or NHL team that almost certainly won’t ever come. Another World Series seems as distant as anything. The All-Star Game won’t come back for a long time."
posted by geoff. at 11:05 AM PST - 17 comments

Ida Herbert (brief text article ). Also 3:51 minute news item (youtube) shows her in action. "A new model of ageing."
posted by Listener at 11:02 AM PST - 4 comments

Given how little thought India’s contribution to the World Wars gets in our collective historical memory, it is almost strange to think that in the First World War India made the largest contribution to the war effort out of all of Britain’s colonies and dominions. Close to 1,700,000 Indians – combatants and non-combatants – participated in WWI. My own area of interest is India’s role in the Mesopotamian theatre. [more inside]
posted by infini at 10:55 AM PST - 7 comments

"Now we have three former NSA officials confirming the basic facts. Neither the Constitution nor federal law allow the government to collect massive amounts of communications and data of innocent Americans and fish around in it in case it might find something interesting. This kind of power is too easily abused. We're extremely pleased that more whistleblowers have come forward to help end this massive spying program." - the EFF announces that three former employees of the NSA have come forward to testify in their lawsuit against the NSA over the domestic spying program.
posted by crayz at 10:40 AM PST - 31 comments



Apple is abandoning EPEAT
Apple’s mobile design direction is in conflict with the intended direction of the standard. Specifically, the standard lays out particular requirements for product “disassemble-ability,” a very important consideration for recycling: “External enclosures, chassis, and electronic subassemblies shall be removable with commonly available tools or by hand.” Electronics recyclers need to take out hazardous components such as batteries before sending computers through their shredders, because batteries can catch fire when punctured.
[more inside]
posted by lodurr at 9:05 AM PST - 165 comments

Exploring The Adventures Of Pete And Pete’s genesis and highlights -- The AV Club talks to Adventures of Pete & Pete creators Will McRobb and Chris Viscardi in this four part series.
posted by modernserf at 7:32 AM PST - 17 comments


Ta-Nehisi Coates, a senior editor at The Atlantic, recently touched on a couple of interesting aspects of the American Civil War. First, Racism Against White People briefly looked at how Southern intellectuals argued that Northern whites were of a different race. Then a subthread in the comments on that post spawned an investigation of American Exceptionalism in History and the notion of preserving democracy in the context of the American Civil War. After all, "if a government can be sundered simply because the minority doesn't like the results of an election, can it even call itself a government?" Definitely check out the comments of both posts.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:57 AM PST - 49 comments

To Use and Use Not: [NYTimes.com] "In an interview in The Paris Review in 1958 Ernest Hemingway made an admission that has inspired frustrated novelists ever since: The final words of “A Farewell to Arms,” his wartime masterpiece, were rewritten “39 times before I was satisfied.” A new edition of “A Farewell to Arms,” which was originally published in 1929, will be released next week, including all the alternate endings, along with early drafts of other passages in the book."
posted by Fizz at 5:24 AM PST - 19 comments

In the wake of a very thorough and damning statistical analysis of 168 of his papers, published in March, Japanese investigators have concluded that Yoshitaka Fujii, fabricated his results in at least 172 published studies; shattering the previous record for most retracted papers. Considered an expert in postoperative nausea and vomiting, his "incredibly nice" findings drew scrutiny in 2000, but he continued to publish prolifically for more than a decade. Here are the published results of the Japanese Society of Anesthesiology's Special Investigation Committee, with an annotated list of all of his papers (PDF). The Retraction Watch also considers not only the depth of Fujii's betrayal but also whether the discipline of anesthesiology itself has a problem as it weighs in. [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 5:22 AM PST - 33 comments


2 powerful sets of photographs: Heads and Néosurréalisme à tendance sociale by French photographer Yves Lecoq. Also, the more whimsical Mad Bunny's secret life, (not the film) Men in Black and Voyages au bout de mon lit. [more inside]
posted by growabrain at 12:36 AM PST - 8 comments

July 7

In 2011 Malaysia Airlines introduced what is believed to be the world's first airline integration with Facebook. In February Air France KLM announced its Meet And Seat program, allowing customers to scan other passengers' social media profiles. to select or reject seatmates. (Previously). It prompted safety and privacy concerns, while others said it showed how a company "gets" social media. In June airBaltic announced it would trial SeatBuddy to make trips more pleasant by seating like-minded people next to each other. Now, British Airways has decided to use the Internet to create dossiers on its customers, including using Google images to find pictures of passengers so that staff can approach them as they arrive at the terminal or plane. The Know Me service will initially be limited to first class passengers and other 'captains of industry'. So-called 'social seating' is part of an emerging trend to marry data-mining with customer service.
posted by Mezentian at 10:30 PM PST - 79 comments

Is America the Most Philosophical Society on the Planet? "For the surprising little secret of our ardently capitalist, famously materialist, heavily iPodded, iPadded and iPhoned society is that America in the early 21st century towers as the most philosophical culture in the history of the world, an unprecedented marketplace of truth and argument that far surpasses ancient Greece, 19th-century Germany or any other place. The openness of its dialogue, the quantity of its arguments, the diversity of its viewpoints, the cockiness with which its citizens express their opinions, the vastness of its First Amendment freedoms, the intensity of its hunt for evidence and information, the widespread rejection of truths imposed by authority or tradition alone, the resistance to false claims of justification and legitimacy, the embrace of Web communication with an alacrity that intimidates the world: All corroborate that fact." [more inside]
posted by bookman117 at 10:19 PM PST - 86 comments

Looking back at the past week, as thunderstorms finally rolled into the Midwest Saturday evening, it seems that the past week's extreme heat (previously) has broken more than 3,500 temperature records in the U.S. [more inside]
posted by limeonaire at 8:25 PM PST - 136 comments

Barney Frank has married Jim Ready, his boyfriend of several years [NYT], in a quiet ceremony officiated by MA Governor Deval L. Patrick on the banks of the Charles River in Newton, MA. Frank becomes not only the first out gay Congressman in the US, but now the first one to enter into same-sex marriage.
posted by hippybear at 7:08 PM PST - 70 comments

A liquor store in Amsterdam. A veteran in Bagdad. A family in Rome. A WWII veterans memorial in Berlin. A house in Oxford. Edouard Levé photographed towns in the United States that shared names with famous cities. He photographed fully-clothed actors reenacting scenes from rugby and pornography [nsfw]. He also wrote some novels, influenced by Oulipo. Autoportrait, describes his life in 120 pages of unordered vignettes and brief, declarative sentences—"The girl whom I loved the most left me. [...] I am uneasy in rooms with small windows." and so on. His fourth novel, Suicide, is a one-sided conversation between an anonymous narrator ("I") and his friend ("you"), who committed suicide twenty years ago. It's a painfully intimate meditation on the act and its fallout on its own merits—"Your life was hypothesis. Those who die old are made of the past. Thinking of them, one thinks of what they have done. Thinking of you, one thinks of what you could have become. You were, and you will remain, made up of possibilities."—but few will read Suicide unburdened with the knowledge that Edouard Levé killed himself several days after completing it, at the age of 47. [more inside]
posted by spanishbombs at 6:52 PM PST - 7 comments

The Shuttle Launches, all 135 of them, playing simultaneously. Edited by McLean Fahnestock. If you're looking for the Challenger video, it is in the second row from the top, the 6th frame from the right.
posted by HuronBob at 3:44 PM PST - 32 comments

SOFEX: The Business of War (video, ad). VICE magazine reports on 'experiencing the military-industrial complex's trade show' [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:55 PM PST - 17 comments

Dutch artist Rosa Verloop's disturbing humanoid figures are made out of nylons all pinned together.
posted by hermitosis at 2:52 PM PST - 16 comments

John Goerzen, an IT development manager in Kansas and a developer for Debian, has been teaching his two sons, ages five and two, respectively, how to use Linux. [more inside]
posted by Cash4Lead at 2:14 PM PST - 91 comments

Weak as I am is a webcomic by Nigel Auchterlounie, about a guy who accidentally steals a superhero's powers. The story ended today. [Some of Auchterlounie's work is mildly NSFW]
posted by moonmilk at 2:06 PM PST - 24 comments

Your music played through giant Tesla Coils in Cleveland Ohio. [more inside]
posted by pallen123 at 1:30 PM PST - 8 comments

On Monday hundreds of thousands of computers will lose their ability to connect to the Internet. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:16 PM PST - 72 comments

Rep. Thaddeus McCotter (previously), R-MI 11, is a very conservative politician and a colorful character, to say the least. [more inside]
posted by dhens at 12:25 PM PST - 27 comments

Ali Spagnola's Synonyms for Drunk is a remarkably catchy song featuring 91 words for "Drunk" in less than one minute. [slyt]
posted by quin at 12:01 PM PST - 20 comments

In 1927 Miguel Covarrubias published Negro Drawings ( nsfw ).
Here are some of his cartoons for Vanity Fair and other publications.
posted by adamvasco at 11:26 AM PST - 8 comments

Iran confronts its alcohol problem. 'After years of denying the prevalence of illegal alcohol in Iran, officials are addressing the issue, while continuing to treat drinking as a sin and a crime.' 'Recently, two men in a northeastern province were given rare death sentences for drinking, as part of the country's three-strikes law. Each man had been convicted of drinking twice before.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 11:22 AM PST - 19 comments


The BBC's new Olympics 2012 ad (full 2m40s version; SLYT) is a CGI masterpiece for the video gamer era. (best viewed with YouTube HD resolution settings on) [more inside]
posted by Bwithh at 10:34 AM PST - 74 comments

The Quiet Carriage (slv). Author Geoff Dyer discourses on the politics of the quiet carriage in trains. Part of the 5x15 initiative.
posted by Lezzles at 10:26 AM PST - 8 comments

In 1891 author and lecturer ”Max O’Rell” (being the pen name of one Léon Paul Blouet) published an amusing account of his travels through the States and Eastern Canada - "A Frenchman In America" - that, along with the charming illustrations, reflect on then popular national stereotypes and character and is presented on Project Gutenberg in its entirely. (via)
posted by The Whelk at 9:36 AM PST - 16 comments

If you wouldn't mind just watching this guy play 100 famous guitar riffs in one take, I'm feeling a sudden urge to grab my Fender Stratocaster.
posted by dry white toast at 8:06 AM PST - 82 comments

What can be done to prevent another financial meltdown? While some cry for armed revolution, others are whispering for incremental changes that could have a substantial impact on how high finance works – or doesn't. John Coates, a former Wall Street derivatives trader and now a neuroscientist at the University of Cambridge, has done novel research on how testosterone skews the thinking – and thus the behavior – of traders, inspiring them to take on more risk than benefits society. His research is now available in a book. Would programs that encourage more women to enter – and/or climb the ranks of – trading groups make finance more responsible? (If this strikes you as biological determinism, there are other lines of inquiry that may be headed in the same direction: how managers exploit subordinates in ways that shape overall behavior and could be modified via both incentives and regulation; how cheating happens and the best ways to prevent it.)
posted by noway at 7:47 AM PST - 45 comments

In November of 2001, Chunklet Magazine published Fred Weaver's tour diary chronicling the The Final Dark Days of Don Caballero (14 scanned JPGs). The final tour documented in this article marked the end of the collaboration between Damon Che and Ian Williams, the original creative machine behind the notable math rock band. [more inside]
posted by bwilms at 7:38 AM PST - 6 comments

A few American students visited North Korea last month (SLYT) and took some amazing footage. While mostly within the confines of the official guided tour it still offers a fascinating glimpse of life in North Korea under Kim Jong Un. A "relentless stream of hyper-positive propaganda."
posted by gallois at 12:21 AM PST - 74 comments

July 6

meowbify the net: this little app makes the web have more cats. Because there was a need.
posted by chapps at 10:22 PM PST - 35 comments

"The Canadian arm of the aircraft engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney closed a six-year U.S. government probe last week by admitting that it helped China produce its first modern attack helicopter ... The prosecution marked 'one of the largest resolutions of export violations with a major defense contractor in the Justice Department's history...'"
posted by griphus at 8:13 PM PST - 60 comments

The Mozilla Foundation has announced that they're throwing in the towel on their popular email client Thunderbird, citing a dearth of active contributors and the growing popularity of web-based email. Mozilla remains committed to releasing Thunderbird ESR 17 on 20 Nov 2012 which will be supported with stability and security fixes until 3 Dec 2013. They've also announced a plan to provide infrastructure and support for Thunderbird to live on as a community-driven project.
posted by Rhomboid at 7:49 PM PST - 96 comments

Spin Cycles is a radio series by CBC producer Ira Basen about how those in power can manipulate facts in order to make their case for the rest of us. [more inside]
posted by jamincan at 6:08 PM PST - 11 comments

Discover Magazine posted a couple of blog entries about the law school scam as a cognitive bias and why law school tuition isn't more dispersed.
posted by reenum at 5:58 PM PST - 52 comments

Our Beloved Revolutionary Sweetheart (Side 1): Eye of Fatima I&II She Divines Water Devil Song One of These Days Turquois Jewelry [more inside]
posted by vozworth at 5:45 PM PST - 12 comments

For sale: one online community, vintage. The Well, one of the oldest online communities, is up for sale again, according to a filing by it's current owner, the much beleagured Salon. A retrospective of the site from a user also says that some users are currently in discussion to buy it back. [more inside]
posted by zabuni at 3:42 PM PST - 46 comments

The Next Microsoft - A 3 day experiment in rebranding Microsoft by art student Andrew Kim.
posted by Artw at 3:30 PM PST - 76 comments

'You Have a Smart Face': the $120 Million Wire Transfer, the Octopus, the Silencer, and the Corpse in the Alley. An infamous fake trader fakes his own death, gets caught, is released, gets desperate, and is offered entrance into an apparent world of secret government, secret agents, and secret accounts.

Previously.
posted by darth_tedious at 2:51 PM PST - 16 comments

'What Exactly Is '50 Shades of Grey (And What Can You Expect From The Movie?)': Fan-fiction is the written word equivalent of taking two naked dolls and mashing them together to make what you think sex looks like when you’re 10 years old. And it’s written at that level. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:48 PM PST - 252 comments

PANTONE® Guides are a system of classification of colors represented by an alphanumeric code, allowing accurate recreation in any medium. Humanae is a project from Spanish artist Angelica Dass that applies the alphanumerical classification of the PANTONE® coloring system to human skin tone, communicated through a photographed portraiture series. The exact shade is extracted from a sample of 11x11 pixels from the face of the people portrayed. The ongoing aim is to record and catalog human skin tones through scientific measurement.
posted by netbros at 2:06 PM PST - 35 comments


In July 2007, NPR published a two part series (direct links: 1, 2) about a four year old uninvestigated rape case at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation. Sparked in part by a 2006 report (pdf) from Amnesty International that included a startling statistic: "One in three Native American women will be raped in her lifetime," NPR's investigation led to the reopening of the case and Congressional hearings. In February 2011, Harper's published an update of sorts: Tiny Little Laws: A Plague of Sexual Violence in Indian Country (Via)
posted by zarq at 1:51 PM PST - 14 comments

Further evidence that the cultural trend of zombie popularity has reached it's peak, or nadir, depending on your preferences. Portland area country singer/songwriter Amanda Richards in 2011 released a concept album whose storyline revolves around the zombie apocalypse, from the perspective of a feminist country singer.
posted by mediocre at 1:30 PM PST - 52 comments

Shit Boston Cops Say: "For at least six years, the Boston Police Patrolmen's Association (BPPA) has published a boldly bigoted official union newsletter, the Pax Centurion. Full of screeds against minorities, women, progressives, gays, Muslims, and even crime victims, its pages have long drawn ire from activists and union members alike. Last week, though, the mostly obscure paper finally broke into the spotlight: Mayor Tom Menino called the Pax 'garbage,' Boston Police Superintendent Ed Davis condemned the rag on Twitter, and several big-brand advertisers yanked their sponsorships." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 1:29 PM PST - 69 comments

Last year, UK beatboxer Beardyman (previously, twice) released an album with the song Vampire Skank. Recently, that track was remixed by UK producer Doorly. The remix was paired with a video, made largely with puppets.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:46 PM PST - 14 comments

Ignore the torn paper below as I look bored amidst this painful-looking pose, thanks. Joe Klamar, a photographer associated with the news agency AFP who won the 2009 Czech Press Photo group's Photo of the Year for a striking shot of President Obama in Prague, is under fire in certain corners of the web for his photos of U.S. Olympic athletes. [more inside]
posted by raysmj at 10:52 AM PST - 282 comments

Spider-Man's Less Impressive Super Power. [slyt] [via]
posted by quin at 10:49 AM PST - 19 comments

3... 2... 1... fontBomb! Detonate your favourite websites in stylish fashion with this experimental bookmarklet by Philippe-Antoine Lehoux. [more inside]
posted by oulipian at 10:17 AM PST - 10 comments

Julia Kristeva wrote about the horror of Abjection, when the body that formally was considered a unified whole is disturbing to see/touch when the parts are separated. Or it can be really funny, as can be seen when this gentleman pranks (YT) his friends by making a wig of his own hair. via reddit
posted by saucysault at 9:23 AM PST - 46 comments

The artistic gas storage tanks of Japan. Some explanation Includes a NSFW image, strangely enough. [more inside]
posted by asok at 7:55 AM PST - 31 comments


"Dinosaurs welcome us along our highways, and infiltrate the most private domains of our home..." [more inside]
posted by Sayuri. at 7:43 AM PST - 12 comments

Want to be a New York City tour guide? You can't just jump right in and start doing it. First, you'll need to pass the Sightseeing Guide license test, a surprisingly difficult exam meant to ensure that only the best and brightest NYC history nerds can conduct tours. [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:04 AM PST - 44 comments

The Ohio Supreme Court has announced it will hear the appeal of John Freshwater, a Mt. Vernon eighth grade science teacher terminated after being accused of preaching Christian beliefs in class when discussing topics such as evolution and homosexuality. He was also accused of burning the image of a cross on students' arms. [more inside]
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:57 AM PST - 146 comments

Football's Most Dangerous Rivalry: Celtic v Rangers [more inside]
posted by laconic skeuomorph at 6:52 AM PST - 29 comments

Louis C.K. on eating pressure and providing an alternative to The Man - "I ask him to think about what he really needs; when he tells me, I give him a little more. It buys me goodwill with this person; I feel good about what I'm paying them. I like to give people a little more than they want, and I like to ask people for a little less than they're willing to give." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 6:09 AM PST - 40 comments

"None of us are gods, evil, good, or any other kind of god. We are mortal. If I am cut, I bleed. If you are cut, you bleed. We are all flesh and blood. We are born. We live. We die. The only thing that makes us different is that we are a new kind of human being , One day everyone in the world will be like us. We are Tomorrow People, Hsui Tai, and you are one of us!" [more inside]
posted by Mezentian at 5:20 AM PST - 32 comments

Rapping farmers: One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight....
posted by twoleftfeet at 4:03 AM PST - 19 comments

July 5

Mangajin was created in the early 90's as a monthly English publication for students of the Japanese language. Unlike most text books that focused solely on teaching people Japanese through boring text, Mangajin was different in that it focused on showing readers a page of manga and then a page of English translations. As great of an idea that this sounds today, it didn't catch on in the 90's and Mangajin ended in 1996. Now manga in America is as popular as ever, which is why I have decided to put Mangajin onto this web site. Fans of Japanese manga and who are looking to learn Japanese will undoubtedly find Mangajin very useful!
posted by KokuRyu at 10:04 PM PST - 32 comments



Thank you for killing my novel - A negative review in the NYT sparks a dialogue between an editor there and a fictional character from the book in question. [more inside]
posted by smoke at 5:59 PM PST - 46 comments

The Tony Awards' 2012 Opening Number - What If Life Were More Like Theater? - with Neil Patrick Harris, Patti LuPone, Amanda Seyfried, and Jesse Tyler Ferguson
posted by The Whelk at 5:39 PM PST - 60 comments

Over 350 US Navy ships were lost in combat during World War II. Only one of them resulted in the captain being court martialed. [more inside]
posted by rmd1023 at 4:57 PM PST - 64 comments

James Mollison's Disciples project. Over three years I photographed fans outside different concerts. I was fascinated by the different tribes of people that attended them, and how people emulated celebrity to form their identity.
posted by ignignokt at 4:55 PM PST - 36 comments

Rock band Def Leppard has decided upon a unique solution to the problem of making their music available for electronic distribution despite conflicts with Universal Music Group: Re-record their entire back catalog as accurately as possible. They're calling the songs 'forgeries.'
posted by LastOfHisKind at 3:35 PM PST - 150 comments

Meet Samarai, Lockheed Martin's maple seed-inspired UAV (aka drone). Flight video
posted by fings at 2:53 PM PST - 66 comments

After much critical acclaim, the dramatic jury prize at Sundance, the Fipresci prize at Cannes, and a 'national critical response for the ages,' Louisiana-produced Beasts of the Southern Wild opened yesterday. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:41 PM PST - 30 comments

Researchers found [.pdf], after a series of four studies that "husbands embedded in traditional and neo-traditional marriages (relative to husbands embedded in modern ones) exhibit attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors that undermine the role of women in the workplace." The potential resistors focused on are husbands embedded in marriages that structurally mirror the 1950s ideal American family portrayed in the “Adventures of Ozzzie and Harriet” sitcom. [more inside]
posted by ambrosia at 2:32 PM PST - 56 comments


The Boston Symphony Orchestra is one of the handful of orchestras for which musicians the world over will drop everything to scramble for a job, and the audition ranks among the world’s toughest job interviews. Mike Tetreault has spent an entire year preparing obsessively for this moment. He's put in 20-hour workdays, practiced endlessly and shut down his personal  life. Now the percussionist has 10 minutes to impress a selection committee and stand out among a lineup of other world-class musicians. A single mistake and it's over.  A flawless performance and he could join one of the world's most renowned and financially well-endowed orchestras at a salary of more than $100,000 a year. The Audition. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:28 PM PST - 90 comments

"I'll break down to you exactly what happened, a play-by-play account. I came home, unbelievably intoxicated, I mean beyond drunk. I couldn't even, let's say, upload a video to Youtube. Then I walked upstairs and spotted in the hallway a video camera atop a tripod, pointed toward the floor. I had no choice. The only viable move was for me to start singing Kiss From a Rose to my cat, who I am very clearly abusing physically."
posted by yellowbinder at 12:10 PM PST - 52 comments


You might have seen the hours of music from Bloglin last year, but Мишка ("Mishka," or "bear cub" in Russian) has another treasure trove of music: free albums, anthologies, and mixtapes on Bandcamp. They started a bit slow with a single mixtape in 2009 from Ninjasonik, and 2010 wasn't too active. But in 2011 they had 9 releases, and already 14 in 2012, the newest being the debut album from 19-year-old nu-disco producer Cream Dream. A handy rundown of the releases to date below the fold. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 11:50 AM PST - 12 comments


Proving that Dallas is slightly more than concrete, SUVs and bad air quality, the Great Trinity Forest is home to birds, deer, bobcats, badgers, alligators and even a seven foot nine inch, 200 pound alligator gar named Garzilla as documented in the excellent blog Dallas Trinity Trails. [more inside]
posted by punkfloyd at 11:12 AM PST - 14 comments

What is Spelunky? Well, it's a game that's "as generous as it is bloodthirsty," with "astonishing creativity and spectacular depth." First appearing as a freeware PC game in 2008, Spelunky (previously) is a hilariously brutal and oddly addicting marriage of roguelike, platformer, and puzzler. A new version was released for Xbox Live Arcade on July 4th, with updated visuals and a warbly soundtrack that recall the days of SNES gaming, as well as a deathmatch mode that's been compared to the mayhem of Bomberman. If you're anything like me, you'll get hopelessly consumed. (Trailer. Original freeware version for PC and Mac.)
posted by naju at 11:01 AM PST - 40 comments


Sh*tty Pop Song
posted by Hypnotic Chick at 10:30 AM PST - 49 comments

How to replace an Imax Screen. London's BFI, after 13 years, needed a new screen. Not the simplest of jobs, given the screen is 85 feet x 65 feet in size. Luckily, when they did change it this week, they brought a camera along to take some pictures.
posted by ewan at 10:11 AM PST - 24 comments

Andy Fairhurst uses silhouetted children to brilliantly illustrate the imaginations of Superhero Kids. [more inside]
posted by quin at 10:05 AM PST - 6 comments


Last night at the Big Bay Boom Firework Show in San Diego, a technical glitch caused 18 minutes of choreographed fireworks to go off in about 15 seconds (and 5 minutes premature). The results were impressive. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus at 9:35 AM PST - 67 comments


"The ... Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant accident was the result of collusion between the government, the regulators and Tepco, and the lack of governance by said parties."
posted by mondo dentro at 8:44 AM PST - 127 comments

The unaired pilot for the US version of The IT Crowd (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:25 AM PST - 164 comments

The IRL Fetish "If the hardware has spread virally within physical space, the software is even more insidious. Thoughts, ideas, locations, photos, identities, friendships, memories, politics, and almost everything else are finding their way to social media. The power of “social” is not just a matter of the time we’re spending checking apps, nor is it the data that for-profit media companies are gathering; it’s also that the logic of the sites has burrowed far into our consciousness."
posted by stoneweaver at 8:00 AM PST - 57 comments


Mike McHenry has posted several photo pages of the Chinese firecracker and firework labels he's been collecting since 1968.
posted by gman at 5:56 AM PST - 28 comments

July 4


Telephone Free Landslide Victory (side A): Border Ska, The day Lassie went to the Moom, Wasted with quality shut us down, Yanqui go Home, 9 of disks, Payed vacation greece, 1985 footage of Camper Van Beehtoven singing WTHiB and Cowboys from Hollywood. [more inside]
posted by vozworth at 8:17 PM PST - 23 comments

South Africa has named Oscar Pistorius and his running blades (Previously Previouslier Previousliest) to their 2012 Olympic track and field team in the 400 and 4x400 relay. He needed to run a 45.30 or better twice this year to qualify on his own merits, but he has done this only once this year (and at least once last year). The New York Times Magazine profiled him earlier this year. However, he will not be the first competitor to be named to both the olympics and paralympics in the same year: [more inside]
posted by persona at 5:08 PM PST - 103 comments

On March 21, the Pima Air & Space Museum built and flew the largest paper airplane in history. The "Arturo Desert Eagle" was 45 feet long and weighed 800 pounds. Carried up to 2700 feet by a helicopter before being released, it flew almost a mile and then crashed rather spectacularly (YT).
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 4:37 PM PST - 46 comments


The Gallery of Lost Art, from the Tate. Flash-intensive, autoloading, with background noise.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 2:21 PM PST - 2 comments

Paths to Graceland is a new mix from the Kleptones. Not bad listening for a BBQ.
posted by gwint at 2:17 PM PST - 24 comments

Mike Judge (King of the Hill, Beavis and Butthead) directs and Titmouse (Metalocalyse, Superjail!) produces an animated music video for the Zac Brown Band (categorized as "country, Southern rock, bluegrass, reggae and folk" in Wikipedia) that has nothing to do with the song. Ladies and Gentlefolk, somebody with an excellent sense of humor presents: Robo-Redneck.
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:13 PM PST - 20 comments

Gerry Matthews, the voice of Sugar Bear, created and curates the Museum of Un-Natural History.
posted by wallabear at 1:38 PM PST - 10 comments



Listen to Sousa introduce his band playing The Stars and Stripes Forever. Or listen to his band play without him, as he was wary of recordings. Or listen to a take by a more recent symphonic band. Or renditions on the guitar (one, two), the organ (one, two), or the piano (one, two). Or performed by the muppets.
posted by weston at 10:42 AM PST - 25 comments

A quarter-century of responses to the Pew Research Center's American Values survey statements show some surprising trends when graphed over time. A sampling: Data is also broken down by religious and political affiliation, gender, age, race, education and income.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:33 AM PST - 86 comments

Toiling away in the obscure backwaters of Google+, mefi's own Shakespeherian has been engaged in a compelling serial storytelling experiment: three THRILLING TALES of MYSTERY and ADVENTURE in a Choose Your Own Adventure By Committee format: [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 10:20 AM PST - 25 comments

Skyrim: The Real Dragonborn reveals some of the downsides of living in the Elder Scrolls universe. [slyt]
posted by quin at 10:04 AM PST - 37 comments

"Welcome to Earth!"
posted by Artw at 9:58 AM PST - 79 comments

London underground film group Future Cinema exploded into public consciousness this week with the news that their Secret Cinema run of Prometheus outsold the BFI, the usual box-office champion. [more inside]
posted by nickrussell at 8:38 AM PST - 15 comments

The curious case of the eroding eikaiwa salary. Now fraught with job insecurity and low pay, there was a time when the work was steady and salaries were high for those who taught English in Japan. Around the turn of the millennium, salaries and work conditions for English teachers in Japan began a downward trend — one that has now spilled into the '10s and shows no signs of slowing, let alone reversing.
posted by KokuRyu at 7:59 AM PST - 49 comments

One day in early July, federal judge Ronald S.W. Lew walked into Ken White's office and said, "Get your coat."
posted by WCityMike at 7:54 AM PST - 20 comments

During his lunch break, teacher Gregory Euclide creates beautiful drawings on his classroom's whiteboard - and then wipes them away. [more inside]
posted by pecanpies at 7:34 AM PST - 36 comments

Hans-Jurgen Kuhl was able to create "shockingly perfect" copies of the American $100 bill by using his artistic talents to conquer the various security features present in the bill.
posted by reenum at 6:54 AM PST - 28 comments

“If ever men should celebrate the day with the rapt ardor of devotees, it is the soldiers of the Union,” bent on “saving the Union of the revolutionary fathers from destruction.” The residents of Fredericksburg VA didn't celebrate Independence Day in 1862. It was no longer their Independence Day. However, just across the river, within both sight and sound of the residents of Fredericksburg, the Union Army threw a raucous celebration, complete with fireworks, artillery salutes, mule races, a greased pole, and a greased pig.
posted by COD at 6:46 AM PST - 10 comments

All This and World War II is a 1976 musical documentary that juxtaposes Beatles songs, performed by a number of musicians, with World War II newsreel footage and 20th Century Fox films from the 1940s. It lasted two weeks in cinemas and was quickly sent into storage. "In this installment of Rock 'N Roll Case Study we talk about All This and World War II, which is perhaps one of the most bizarre movies in rock 'n roll." [via]
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 6:05 AM PST - 24 comments

A robotic disagreement turns serious when they drop the bass.
posted by vanar sena at 5:11 AM PST - 35 comments

What began with one man in a patent office and the insight that mass and energy are the same has culminated at the largest particle collider ever built, employing 2400 full-time employees and 10,000 visiting scientists: CERN has announced the discovery of the Higgs boson, a major vindication for the Standard Model of particle physics. [more inside]
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:05 AM PST - 97 comments

Breaking Out. This afternoon, in a lift in Manchester ... a BBC Research and Development experiment into new editorial formats.
posted by feelinglistless at 5:04 AM PST - 19 comments

"An English project I did that people at my school really thought was funny." Max Sánchez-Kollegger (Waluiginumberone) hams it up, reviewing Scott Westerfield's Leviathan and it's sequel Behemoth on youtube.
posted by Omnomnom at 4:47 AM PST - 7 comments


Since 2009, a thread on the Skyscraper Page forums has been dedicated to trawling for old photos and stories of Los Angeles, mostly from the LA Public Library and USC Archives. Thousands of posts have accumulated into a fascinating portrait of the city. [more inside]
posted by anazgnos at 1:48 AM PST - 8 comments

"By the time I realized I was in love, it was malignant. It was hopeless. There was no escaping, no negotiating with the feeling. No choice. It was my first love, it changed my life. Back then, my mind would wander to the women I had been with, the ones I cared for and thought I was in love with. I reminisced about the sentimental songs I enjoyed when I was a teenager.. the ones I played when I experienced a girlfriend for the first time. I realized they were written in a language I did not yet speak." --Frank Ocean comes out. [more inside]
posted by acidic at 12:27 AM PST - 56 comments

July 3

Herman Cain has a new joint. From Herman Cain, the main who broke the mold of bizarre political advertising, comes CainTV.
posted by dbiedny at 10:15 PM PST - 45 comments

"Had I ever given a compliment that made someone feel worse? Or that had no effect at all? I decided to learn how to deliver good ones. I devised a plan in which I would give a lot of them in a short time and work to figure out exactly how the best compliments worked, and why."
posted by vidur at 8:41 PM PST - 52 comments


Remember Nondrick from Livin' in Oblivion? Chris Livingston documents his descendent's non-adventures as a non-player character in Skyrim in PC Gamer's The Elder Strolls. [more inside]
posted by Ritchie at 7:52 PM PST - 22 comments


How to look your best the morning after (SLYT): makeup celebrity Lauren Luke aka panacea81 does a stealth PSA for domestic violence charity Refuge. (Interview)
posted by DarlingBri at 7:21 PM PST - 15 comments


Up-close with Atlantis. A photo gallery of Space Shuttle Atlantis, as it awaits decommissioning in the VAB.
posted by bitmage at 6:53 PM PST - 10 comments

Infographic essay on the meaning of life. Visual design by Marco Bagni Music by sarco-o (see also i am sarco
posted by boo_radley at 6:11 PM PST - 8 comments

Recent technologies developed at American universities are making communication easier for the sight and hearing impaired. Last summer a Stanford undergrad developed a touchscreen Braille writer that stands to revolutionize how the blind negotiate an unseen world by replacing devices costing up to 10 times more. Thanks to a group of University of Houston students, the hearing impaired may soon have an easier time communicating with those who do not understand sign language. During the past semester, students in UH’s engineering technology and industrial design programs teamed up to develop the concept and prototype for MyVoice, a device that reads sign language and translates its motions into audible words, and vice versa.
posted by netbros at 5:10 PM PST - 4 comments

Fallout 3 vs. Reality - A fan of the video game series Fallout 3, which depicts a post-apocalyptic world, travels to Washington, DC and Las Vegas to take photos of the locations as they exist today and compares them to screen captures from within the game. (via Reddit thread)
posted by Argyle at 4:38 PM PST - 51 comments


Virus (復活の日 Fukkatsu no hi, literally "Day of Resurrection") is a 1980 Japanese post-apocalyptic film about the release and spread of a deadly virus. [more inside]
posted by jiawen at 4:20 PM PST - 17 comments

Save the Words: Adopt words that have been abandoned by the English language.
posted by Fizz at 2:18 PM PST - 83 comments

When, where, how and why —since the origin of life on Earth about 4 billion years ago— did organisms' input/output functions become conscious input/output functions?

This week there's a who's who of cognitive science meeting at the The Evolution and Function of Consciousness conference at University de Québec à Montréal (scroll down a bit for the massive speaker list). The conference is in commemoration of the Turing Centenary (previously). And the best-of-the-web thing is: all of the videos (and discussion threads) are or will shortly be available on line! [more inside]
posted by mondo dentro at 2:16 PM PST - 46 comments


What's the best way to show your Hufflepuff House pride? Why Lady Gaga parody videos, of course.
posted by The Whelk at 2:08 PM PST - 53 comments

The Race Card Project by Michele Norris of NPR.
posted by mrgrimm at 12:27 PM PST - 17 comments

For a time, Max Linder was considered the greatest of film comedians. Star of over 500 films (examples, 1, 2), inventor of the mirror gag, he was arguably the first film star. His life changed forever when he fought on the front lines in World War I, surviving three serious wounds, including a gas attack. Thereafter, he began bouts of depression. In 1925, he talked his new bride into a suicide pact, dying on Halloween. [more inside]
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 12:26 PM PST - 11 comments

These cards, produced in 1938 by Philadelphia-based Gum, Inc. (later Bowman), produced a political furor unlike any other. The idea for these cards was introduced by George Moll, a Sunday-school teacher and Gum, Inc.'s advertising counsel. Warren Bowman, owner of Gum, Inc., claimed that he wanted to "teach peace by exposing the horrors of war." [link is to an archive of trading cards featuring cartoonish racism/violence/godknowswhat] [more inside]
posted by Think_Long at 12:21 PM PST - 9 comments

Roosevelt Island in New York City has a pneumatic garbage collection system. As part of the planned development of the island in the early 1970s, network of 20-inch tubes takes trash from the island’s 16 residential towers to a central collection point, replacing streetside garbage collection.
posted by exogenous at 12:15 PM PST - 40 comments



Bringing VICE to HBO: To win over the cable network, the Vice team assembled a “best of” reel that included stories on North Korean labor camps, Liberia and the gun markets of Pakistan and later produced a pilot that included stories about Afghan suicide bombers and underground heroin clinics. [more inside]
posted by thisisdrew at 10:16 AM PST - 22 comments

With the election of Pena Nieto to the presidency, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) ends a twelve-year absence from the seat. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:53 AM PST - 29 comments

The Court of Justice of the European Union has ruled that people can resell used software licenses. Rock, Paper, Shotgun speculates about what this will mean for gaming, an industry which has embraced digital distribution wholeheartedly.
posted by gilrain at 9:31 AM PST - 77 comments

"So, one night I can remember sitting up in bed telling my mother (Connie Rosen) that I couldn't sleep because I was sure I was going to fail. She brought me some hot milk with brown sugar in it and told me that I mustn't tell anyone but I couldn't fail. She said that actually the whole thing was really decided by the headteacher. He or she did a 'recommendation'. If anyone failed who the headteacher thought should have passed, the schools found a way for that person to go to grammar school." -- Michael Rosen on his experiences growing up going to school in 1950ties Britain, with the Eleven Plus and the start choice of Grammar School or Secondary Modern. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 9:19 AM PST - 25 comments

The Codeless Code. An illustrated collection of (sometimes violent) fables, concerning the Art and Philosophy of software development [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 7:46 AM PST - 62 comments

Take down the fishin' pole and meet me at the fishin' hole: Reports are that entertainer Andy Griffith has died at the age of 86. A comedian, actor, and musician, he created an icon of American decency by portraying sheriff Andy Taylor in his fictional TV town of Mayberry, featured on the Andy Griffith Show and Mayberry RFD. By all accounts, a kind a decent man. You can still visit his museum and peruse his archives.
posted by Miko at 7:32 AM PST - 157 comments

Sleep deprivation making you feel jumpy? It's not in your head. Human cortical excitability increases with time awake. [Abstract and link to full paper.]
posted by stoneweaver at 7:15 AM PST - 12 comments

How Money Makes People Act Less Human: Earlier this year, [Paul] Piff, who is 30, published a paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that made him semi-famous. Titled “Higher Social Class Predicts Increased Unethical Behavior,” it showed through quizzes, online games, questionnaires, in-lab manipulations, and field studies that living high on the socioeconomic ladder can, colloquially speaking, dehumanize people. It can make them less ethical, more selfish, more insular, and less compassionate than other people. It can make them more likely, as Piff demonstrated in one of his experiments, to take candy from a bowl of sweets designated for children. “While having money doesn’t necessarily make anybody anything,” Piff says, “the rich are way more likely to prioritize their own self-interests above the interests of other people. It makes them more likely to exhibit characteristics that we would stereotypically associate with, say, assholes.”
posted by Mooski at 7:03 AM PST - 70 comments

Nervous Structure - an interactive projected light display. [more inside]
posted by quin at 6:53 AM PST - 5 comments

Most folks are familiar with Kathryn Bigelow's film The Hurt Locker, in no small part due to the six Oscars that it won at the 82nd Academy Awards. Some twenty years earlier, Ms. Beigelow made another move with a certain three actors who have a habit of showing up together in films made by Bigelow's husband. Rotten Tomatoes lists this film at number 34 on its list of Top 50 Horror Movies, depite its meager box office performance. It is one of several films featuring music by Tangerine Dream. A remake of the film had been under consideration recently, but was shelved due to the presence of another film franchise in the same genre.
posted by DWRoelands at 6:08 AM PST - 81 comments

Mashup-Germany - "The Day the Music Died" (YouTube/Soundcloud) and "Hey Jude, I'll Be There".
posted by WCityMike at 4:52 AM PST - 13 comments

Rooms photographed from above by Menno Aden.
posted by nthdegx at 4:05 AM PST - 26 comments

The Hollow Crown is a season of 4 of Shakespeare's history plays being broadcast by the BBC. Avoiding past mistakes these are made for a television audience and set on location. [more inside]
posted by epo at 3:26 AM PST - 46 comments

Super Doomed Planet Comics is a webcomic covering such topics as literary success, noodles, and neckties. Occasionally obliquely and surrealistically political, it is typically just surreal. And best of all, it will teach you how to do the poetry.
posted by yankeefog at 3:09 AM PST - 14 comments

In 1982 Actor/Director John Cassavetes gave up a long weekend to star in a film student's short. The end product, The Haircut, is a charming, nearly magical, story of a man going for a haircut and getting much more. The director,Tamar Simon Hoffs, had a daughter Susannah who played in a band then called The Bangs, later The Bangles, who appear near the finish.
posted by Isadorady at 1:53 AM PST - 11 comments

Shelagh was here - an ordinary, magical life: The Toronto Star dedicated unprecedented coverage to the funeral of 55-year-old Shelagh Gordon – interviewing more than 100 of her friends and family – to show how a modest life can have a huge impact. "She didn’t have a great job, she wasn’t married and never had children, so she wasn’t successful in either the traditional male or female sense, Ms. Porter said. But people would keep telling stories about her kindness. 'She had a lot of magic in her life, and that’s reassuring... That you can live a full, interesting, ordinary life.'" The link includes an extensive interactive photograph of stories from those at Shelagh's funeral, and a video with clips from the memorial as well. Via the NYT: Redefining Success and Celebrating the Unremarkable. (previously: you are not special)
posted by flex at 1:06 AM PST - 17 comments

July 2

Scientists at CERN, using the Large Hadron Collider, may have discovered the Higgs Boson. (previously) and (previously)
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 11:45 PM PST - 157 comments

The Girl From Ipanema Turns 50. The song, not the woman. (Although she's still around, and still making everyone she passes go "ahhhhhh".) Written in 1962 by Antônio Carlos Jobim and Vinicius de Moraes, recorded by Pery Ribeiro (here performing the song in 2005), the song gained English lyrics a couple of years later, and became a phenomenon that continues to this day. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 9:37 PM PST - 60 comments

Jack S. Margolis's A Child's Garden of Grass (A Pre-Legalization Comedy). This is the 1971 audio companion to the book of the same name. It's a cult-classic sketch-comedy album which reads like the user's manual to marijuana, and features members of the Firesign Theatre.
posted by not_on_display at 6:51 PM PST - 28 comments

"Indeed, in this year when the United States is engaged in a ferocious campaign for the presidency, the question that ought to be asked is: How does the U.S. electoral system compare to Mexico's? I undertook a comprehensive study of the electoral systems in North America, and the good news is that the United States came in third. The bad news is that there are only three countries in North America." ___With Mexico in the aftermath of yesterday's federal and state elections, Robert A. Pastor observes 8 things the U.S. election system could learn from Mexico's.
posted by CrazyLemonade at 6:49 PM PST - 43 comments

Let it Bleed: Libertarianism and the Workplace from Crooked Timber.
posted by klangklangston at 6:35 PM PST - 184 comments

"We will make amends ere long; / Else the Puck a liar call; / So, good night unto you all." Brian of Britanick (also the team responsible for Eagles Are Turning People Into Horses) tries to recite the final lines of A Midsummer Night's Dream with a little help from his friends Nick Kocher and Dani Puddi [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 6:12 PM PST - 12 comments



The Giant Robot Invasion has begun! You were warned this was coming and given tips to survive. But one tip you didn't get - don't go near the bench!
posted by cashman at 5:32 PM PST - 7 comments

Iconic Portraits Formed by Clusters of Tiny People. Starting his creative career as a street artist, Craig Alan developed his portraiture skills while earning a living to further fund his artistic pursuits. Since that point, the artist has been honing in on his craft and creating something more than your average portrait. He represents people as an amalgam of other people. The artist's portfolio boasts a series of inventive portraits of iconic figures whose visage appears to be composed of tiny pixels. Upon closer inspection, the spectator can see that the pixels are, in fact, people. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 5:01 PM PST - 14 comments


Tracy Widdess is an Canadian artist who makes amazing knitted masks of sci-fi characters and other things. There's a short interview with her on punkdaddy. [more inside]
posted by agatha_magatha at 4:22 PM PST - 15 comments

Please quit posting pictures of your debit cards, people.
posted by pashdown at 2:36 PM PST - 145 comments

Who could forget young Jonathan Krohn (previously), who dazzled the crowd at CPAC 2009 with his finely wrought rhetoric? Or perhaps you remember his classic tome Defining Conservatism. It will come as no surprise that he's still making waves at the grand old age of 17... by swinging left. "I think it was naive."
posted by Madamina at 2:34 PM PST - 53 comments

Southern Values Revived: How Our Elites Have Become Worse "It’s been said that the rich are different than you and me. What most Americans don’t know is that they’re also quite different from each other, and that which faction is currently running the show ultimately makes a vast difference in the kind of country we are. Right now, a lot of our problems stem directly from the fact that the wrong sort has finally gotten the upper hand; a particularly brutal and anti-democratic strain of American aristocrat that the other elites have mostly managed to keep away from the levers of power since the Revolution. Worse: this bunch has set a very ugly tone that’s corrupted how people with power and money behave in every corner of our culture. Here’s what happened, and how it happened, and what it means for America now." [more inside]
posted by bookman117 at 1:49 PM PST - 131 comments


For many years I have asked myself, Why do you spend time with other people? but I never really attempted to come up with an answer. I always believed I was asking myself a rhetorical question, but recently I’ve wanted to find an answer, because a question you ask yourself a thousand times eventually deserves to be answered.
Why go out? -- a Trampoline Hall lecture by Sheila Heti.
posted by Bukvoed at 12:40 PM PST - 45 comments

Is Survivor the only great reality TV show? The AV Club argues yes.
posted by The Gooch at 12:21 PM PST - 127 comments

Your e-book is reading you. How publishers are using e-books to gain valuable information about consumers.
posted by antonymous at 11:43 AM PST - 69 comments

German obstetricians carried out a study to
describe the relationship between the fetus and the pelvis as the fetus travels through the birth canal, using an open magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner.
(via) [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura at 10:05 AM PST - 29 comments

"He would sit in this most incredible bath that had a swan-necked mythological figure with a with a lady of his choice, not with water in it, but with champagne in it, and I guess they would both sit there and listen to the sound of his father spinning in his grave.” - on King Edward VII and his voracious appetites, and his favorite mistress, Daisy Warwick. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:45 AM PST - 48 comments

Sixty-nine photos of US politicians in high school with a few others mixed in.
posted by gman at 9:44 AM PST - 74 comments


At the USA Track & Field Olympic Trials last week in Eugene, OR, Jeneba Tarmoh and Allyson Felix tied for third in the Women's 100m. In an 11 second long race, how is a tie determined? Roger Jennings, photo finish evaluator, explains how it's done. [more inside]
posted by troika at 8:42 AM PST - 21 comments

François Lejeune, better known as Jean Effel (2/12/1908 - 10/16/1982) (photo) was one of the most renowned French cartoonists of his time. His magnum opus may be considered La Création du Monde (Creation of the World), a whimsical and thoroughly modern (and a bit risque) take on Genesis, with God and Co. as designers, cooks, surgeons, engineers, scientists, artists, artisans and parents. You can see some examples of cover art here and selections from a gallery showing of Effel's work (including his anti-fascist work) a third down the page here The only known English translation of his work is an partial and exceedingly rare item. In 1957, an animated French-Czech co-production debuted (CZ: Stvorení sveta). You can watch it in five parts. Roughly divided by chapter: I, II, III, IV, V, VI. [more inside]
posted by griphus at 8:27 AM PST - 4 comments


What's Obamacare? A studious Reddit user has read the mammoth 955-page Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and outlined the important points of what the new law actually does, with specific citations. While the recently-upheld law itself remains unpopular, most individual components of the bill enjoy widespread popularity among republican politicians and the public, despite the fact that both groups remain largely unaware of the bill's actual provisions. [more inside]
posted by schmod at 8:09 AM PST - 82 comments


Click Your Way Through the Impossibly Average World of the Workplace! Choose Your Own Adventure: Office Edition [via]
posted by quin at 6:15 AM PST - 13 comments

Why do the Somali men congregate on the sidewalks downtown? Royal Ross, from the downtown business association for Faribault, Minnesota, a small town just outside Minneapolis, answers the question for you. The very short answer: everything's just fine.
posted by gimonca at 5:30 AM PST - 63 comments

Amnesty International’s 'Security with Human Rights' campaign has just released a short film called Hooded. It is a powerful reminder that torture is barbaric and never justifiable. Just two minutes long, this film uses a unique approach by marrying abstract images with intense sound design to convey the auditory and visual experiences associated with torture. It's a disturbing but gripping film that demonstrates the shocking effects of torture techniques such as water boarding and "hooding".
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:22 AM PST - 4 comments

July 1


Yesterday Australia joined many developed nations in putting a price on carbon pollution (fixed at $23/tonne CO2e for three years) (prev). Despite extensive compensation, this moderate economic reform has proved enormously unpopular ("based on a lie") and is expected to be repealed if/when the Federal Opposition are returned to government.
posted by wilful at 8:22 PM PST - 106 comments


How much difference does a musical arrangement make? Here is Peter Gabriel's More Than This, from 2002's Up. And here is The Polyphonic Spree Mix, using the same lead vocal track. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 6:29 PM PST - 37 comments

I am not busy. I am the laziest ambitious person I know. Like most writers, I feel like a reprobate who does not deserve to live on any day that I do not write, but I also feel that four or five hours is enough to earn my stay on the planet for one more day. On the best ordinary days of my life, I write in the morning, go for a long bike ride and run errands in the afternoon, and in the evening I see friends, read or watch a movie. This, it seems to me, is a sane and pleasant pace for a day.
Tim Kreider: The ‘Busy’ Trap.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 6:25 PM PST - 107 comments

"Flawed satnav instructions are the scapegoat for ridiculous round-trips, buses wedged under bridges, and ambulances taking life-threatening diversions. But few understand or appreciate how far mapping companies go to ensure the accuracy of the data they’re providing."
posted by vidur at 5:16 PM PST - 29 comments

Iggy Azalea is a 22 year old Australian rapper. Her promotional videos Pu$$y, My World, and Two Times brought her Youtube viral fame and helped launch her career. Her first studio album, The New Classic, is set to be released sometime later this year. Other videos include Look At Me Now and two freestyle videos Get Big, and Hell of a Life.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 4:47 PM PST - 31 comments

We speak the same language, which is climbing.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 4:27 PM PST - 15 comments


CALLING ALL THE BASIC BITCHES... Thirteen year-old Lohanthony (Tumblr) is a homophobe's worst nightmare: a flamboyant little diva-obsessed somebody whose Siri is the next Nicole Ritchie, who dances suggestively and does the cinnamon challenge in his religious private school uniform, and seems (so far) unfazed by bullies and haters despite his rapidly growing visibility.
posted by hermitosis at 2:13 PM PST - 126 comments

I put a spell on you: a dramatic lip reading (SLYT).
posted by es_de_bah at 12:34 PM PST - 32 comments

In June of 1973, spurred on by the recent discovery of a dying bird in his garden, 9-year-old Anthony Hollander wrote to the presenters of Blue Peter — the BBC's much-loved children's television show — and asked for assistance in his quest to "make people or animals alive."
posted by T.D. Strange at 11:41 AM PST - 21 comments

Know Canada. Happy Canada Day!
posted by Fizz at 11:23 AM PST - 75 comments

Three years ago, Phil Jablon (aka The Projectionist) started a concerted effort to start documenting the rapidly-vanishing stand-alone movie theaters and former theaters in Southeast Asia. Today his website, The Southeast Asia Movie Theater Project is a historian and movie-theater lover's dream. Jablon has captured the faded, the lost, the torched, the almost lost, the repurposed, the reborn, and the unbounded. [more inside]
posted by blueberry at 10:59 AM PST - 6 comments

The Mosquito AKA SonicScreen [previously] has long been deployed to prevent teenagers from hanging around where they are not always wanted. But now, in the UK, those that seek to rid themselves of troublesome youth have a new weapon of choice: classical music. [more inside]
posted by MrMerlot at 10:21 AM PST - 46 comments

Debbie Harry's first solo album Koo Koo featured iconic artwork by artist H. R. Giger. He also directed the videos for 'Now I Know You Know' and 'Backfired'
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 10:12 AM PST - 17 comments

Mark Ames (of the eXile): The Left’s Big Sellout – How the ACLU and Human Rights Groups Quietly Exterminated Labor Rights (via naked capitalism) [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:17 AM PST - 129 comments

Photographer Stefano Bonazzi's series Smoke, where nude subjects vanish into the air.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:20 AM PST - 15 comments

Recently we learned about Erdos-Bacon-Sabbath numbers. Continuing in this vein, forum members at Select Button have been compiling Williams numbers, being characters in video games who can be linked to Nina Williams from the Tekken series of fighting games. [NSFW forum images]
Mikhail Gorbachev is easy, he has a Williams number of only 2. Adolph Hitler has a Williams number of 3. Also, the guy from Doom, Voltron, Barack Obama and Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law. God has a Williams number of 4. So does T. E. Lawrence and Tron. The Burger King has a Williams number of 5 as well as Sarah Palin, Sigmund Freud, Avatar Aang and H.P. Lovecraft. Homestar Runner has a Williams number of 7. [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 4:28 AM PST - 27 comments

You may have seen these small little triangular shaped cars riding around on the bicycle paths in Holland. Called Cantas, these are sold exclusively to people with disabilities, though there is a lively secondhand market in them as more people turn away from cars to much cheaper scooter mobiles. Only Cantas are legally allowed to ride on bicycle paths or pavements though and only Cantas have had a ballet designed for them. [more inside]
posted by MartinWisse at 3:35 AM PST - 27 comments

Pakistan ruined by language myth .
posted by - at 3:08 AM PST - 35 comments

We've discussed developments in the breakaway Azawad region in Northern Mali here before. The two factions which composed the Azawad government, the nationalist MNLA and the Islamist Ansar Dine broke their alliance, with Ansar Dine now controlling all of the major settlements within the recently declared Awazad. Their treatment of the ancient Muslim shrines of Timbuktu, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, has not been kind. If this reminds you of another recent act of destruction against our shared cultural heritage, well, you're not alone. [more inside]
posted by 1adam12 at 12:57 AM PST - 28 comments