August 2005 Archives

August 31

The Utopian Nightmare : "What is utopianism? It is promising more than you can deliver. It is seeing an easy and sudden answer to long-standing, complex problems. It is trying to solve everything at once through an administrative apparatus headed by “world leaders.” It places too much faith in altruistic cooperation and underestimates self-seeking behavior and conflict. It is expecting great things from schemes designed at the top, but doing nothing to solve the bigger problems at the bottom." Also, be sure to check out the the 16 ideas, values and institutions that may not be with us 35 years from now written by a variety of interesting people and compiled as part of Foreign Policy's 35th anniversary (although not all are free or available without registration).
posted by loquax at 9:49 PM PST - 23 comments

Libelous claims about large corporations Fedex licks each package. Gateway boxes are made from real cowhide. And Victoria has another secret.
posted by wannabehippie at 8:26 PM PST - 26 comments

Resource wars and gas rations, what will be next ? I bet you didn't know we gobble oil like two-legged SUV's.
posted by graytopia at 8:05 PM PST - 20 comments

Orca Live: The idea of Nature Network is to relay live imagery and sound from cameras set up in Nature throughout the world. "My hope is to bring people closer to Nature without disrupting her" that hope is the hope of Dr. Spong. At this very moment, all over the world, a variety of organisms are beaming with life. Wouldn't it be wonderful if there were media by which people could get a sense of this? If a window could be opened up that would trigger city dwellers' memories of the rhythms of Nature, the way we sense the world and our way of being are bound to change somewhat. That hope, too, lies within. via
posted by hortense at 7:41 PM PST - 2 comments

NOAA posts more than 350 aerial images of areas decimated by Katrina. You can download zip files or use a clickable interface. The 2MB-3MB images are not rotated, so if you're comparing the eastern mouth of Bay St. Louis (3MB) to a Google Map image, for instance, you might have to tilt your head and zoom before the damage really hits you.
posted by F Mackenzie at 6:57 PM PST - 28 comments

How the Onion Got a Facelift , and in the process offered their full news archives from 1996 to the present available online for free. The Onion A.V. Club also finds a new home.
posted by Robot Johnny at 5:46 PM PST - 58 comments

Stream the latest Dylan CD set (audio link), "No Direction Home", reviewed here (NYT). Get more Zimmy at Dylantree.com.
posted by xowie at 5:03 PM PST - 20 comments

Abstract art from DNA Scientific pretension meets artistic pretension and, um... beautiful things happen?
posted by ferociouskitty at 4:52 PM PST - 18 comments

You knew it was going to happen. God sent Hurricane Katrina to prevent the Labor Day celebration of homosexual sin known as "Southern Decadence". Apparently, he is also is not a big fan of the Girls Gone Wild video series.
posted by jmccorm at 4:02 PM PST - 61 comments

Purdue University has begun providing podcasts of lectures of some courses, intended for students who miss a class or who want to review specific lectures. Users of the service can download a specific lecture or all of the lectures from an entire course. Apparently also open to the public it is called Boilercast, about 50 classes are starting now for Fall 2005.
posted by stbalbach at 3:51 PM PST - 15 comments

Everyone is (probably) familiar with Something Awful. However, you may not be familiar with their hosting company - located in a New Orleans office building on Poydras in the CBD... but have you noticed that SA hasn't gone blank yet? It's because Zipa, and directNIC upstairs have the whole data center disaster contingency thing on lockdown. Blog and pictures from the directNIC guys are regularly updated. Color me impressed.
posted by kuperman at 3:41 PM PST - 69 comments

It's a queer world after all. A series of animated documentary shorts about homosexuality in the animal kingdom.
posted by gottabefunky at 2:58 PM PST - 11 comments

Rapex, the anti-rape female condom (Reuters link)
The invention of a South African woman, the rapex anti-rape female condom (worn like a tampon) has sharp barbs in it that lock into the rapist's penis and need to be removed surgically which makes it pretty easy to notify the police. Opponents are, understandably, concerned about an escalation of violence against the rape victim.
Rape statistics are sobering and saddening with some estimates that women, children and even babies are raped every 26 seconds in South Africa though Thabo Mbeki, the president of South Africa, has refuted the findings. Virgins are highly sought for rape as there is an urban myth that sex with a virgin will cure HIV/AIDS.
posted by fenriq at 2:53 PM PST - 60 comments

The Bawls Song is something I found out about through PAX, where I was an enforcer. The main Bawls site isn't anything to look at, but this viral piece of fan music is awesome. And if I'm wrong and it's not a fan piece of music (I couldn't find it on their site) sorry! Warning: large file (mp3) and NSFW language.
posted by taumeson at 12:26 PM PST - 16 comments

National Data Buoy Center (Google cache), "the premiere source of meteorological and oceanographic measurements for the marine environment" in the U.S., is located at the NASA Stennis Space Center on the Mississippi gulf coast, is a primary source of hurricane observational data, and is currently offline. At present, the U.S. spends only $50 million annually on ocean observations of vital socio-economic impact. The latest national commission for ocean policy recommended $4 billion annually, including the construction of a distributed, disaster-proof, national ocean observing system, as a component of a global system. The previous ocean commission report in 1969 resulted in the formation of NOAA and the passage of the Coastal Zone Management Act. Will Congress act? The E.U. has.
posted by 3.2.3 at 12:05 PM PST - 6 comments

Apple iTunes to launch a phone. Made by Motorola nd will be available via Cingular. It will be called, 'Rokr'. Just goes to show how much Motorola dislikes 'E' s. (Razr & Rokr)
posted by benkolb at 11:55 AM PST - 47 comments

The Rawker! "The mullet hanging out of the back of the trucker hat, the fact that he's topless and occasionally forgets the lyrics (and must read them from an index card), the chinese zodiac calendar hanging on the wall, just below the window dressing - BUT THERE'S NO WINDOW... And the music! IT RAWKS!"
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 11:18 AM PST - 37 comments

Photos of Unique Mailboxes from Sam , Fred, Kimo, Dean, Flickr, and a few from Quaint Places.
posted by ?! at 11:04 AM PST - 6 comments

Gas at $4 a gallon? A quick summary of the current reasons gas remains high ("Not I!" squawks the refiners, "Not I!" squawks producers). The EPA is easing restrictions in affected areas and the national oil keg is being tapped (WSJ), yet despite the whole doom-and-gloom scenerios the Economist remains perky about the cause of rising prices, "higher oil prices [now] reflect strong demand, ... they are the product of healthy global growth."
posted by geoff. at 10:41 AM PST - 122 comments

Poverty Rate Increases in 2004. The US Census Bureau announced yesterday that the number of Americans living in poverty increased in 2004 by 1.1 million, an increase from 12.5 to 12.7 percent of the population. 2004 also marked the second consecutive year in which real median household income showed no change. Full report here (85 page pdf). Census bureau links page here. President Bush's agenda for tax relief promised "an economics of inclusion. It is the agenda of a government that knows its limits and shows its heart." In the richest country in the world 13 million children under the age of 18 live in poverty. (scroll down to "Age.")
posted by three blind mice at 9:55 AM PST - 36 comments

More than 600 people have died in a stampede on a bridge over the Tigris River in Iraq. Set off by rumors of a suicide bomber, hundreds of Shi'ite Muslims taking a memorial pilgrimage to a Baghdad shrine panicked, leaping over the bridge and trampling others to escape.
posted by grrarrgh00 at 7:43 AM PST - 139 comments

Michael Sheard , who as Mr Bronson in Grange Hill will forever haunt my childhood memories has died aged 65. Aside from Grange Hill, he appeared in numerous films but is probably best known for being throttled by Darth Vader in Empire Strikes Back.
posted by bap98189 at 4:58 AM PST - 26 comments

Into the eye of Katrina: an impressive Flickr set taken from the NOAA-43 and NRL-P3 Hurricane Hunters as they fly into the hurricane's eye. The set owner studies hurricane rainband intensity using ELDORA radar aboard the specially equipped planes. It's a rough flight, but once inside, the results are awe-inspiring.
posted by cenoxo at 12:49 AM PST - 24 comments

Homes from Snøhetta. Løvetann houses are made from modules with built-in standards such as wireless networking, kitchen and bathroom appliances, and home entertainment systems. A small step up from this.
posted by tellurian at 12:19 AM PST - 22 comments

August 30

Over the past few years, as the blogosphere has grown, more and more soldiers' blogs have been gaining fame and notoriety on the web. Many are wonderfully written, others are full of pictures of all different kinds. Most are just blogs that happen to be written by soldiers. But the Army today vowed to more strictly enforce the dissemination of sensitive information online by its soldiers. One soldier has already been disciplined under the new rules. Included in the list of examples given for "sensitive information" was "vulnerabilities." What sort of effect might this have on soldiers' entries in the future, especially those who aren't satisfied with the direction the war in Iraq has taken?
posted by wakko at 11:46 PM PST - 23 comments

Teenage tribes and Council sponsored "mayhem".
posted by lerrup at 11:24 PM PST - 26 comments

St. James Infirmary, in a funereal, no lyrics, brass-band version underlies a persistent scrum of half-remembered songs about New Orleans rising in concert with the waters, lapping at the sandbags of my mind. Up front, Tom Waits (I Wish I Was in New Orleans) and Randy Newman (Lousiana 1927) are duking it out for time at the piano, elaborately filigreed chords overlapping and changing the dominant lyric at the moment of harmonic convergence, while in the background Arlo Guthrie (The City of New Orleans) warbles about a train ride. Professor Longhair and/or The Dixie Cups (Big Chief, Iko Iko) sort of amusedly fight to keep sliptime with the martial drums from Jimmy Driftwood's The Battle of New Orleans (caution: embedded quicktime) behind the whole toxic soup of sonic residue. I'm sure the stew will grow more dense over the next couple weeks. Got a New Orleans song to toss into the waters?
posted by mwhybark at 10:58 PM PST - 45 comments

Did God create hurricane Katrina? Well, probably not. But perhaps, it was George Bush continuing his plan for world domination by using HAARP and scalar technology to control the weather by applying the suppressed theories of Nikola Tesla! See, once Bush has induced economic armageddon it will quickly induce the peak oil crisis thus leading to permanent martial law whereby he'll be able to suspend the constitution. Once all these pesky government controls have been removed, then Bush will finally be able to achieve the neocon dream of a New American Century.
posted by slogger at 10:13 PM PST - 57 comments

The Gospel of Slavery: A Primer of Freedom. An 1864 antislavery treatise, uploaded to flickr.com. (Cory Doctorow at Boingboing says, "When I see stuff like this, I sometimes get a thrill to my toes as I realize that practically every document of this vintage will soon be on the web and only a quick search away.")
posted by Guy Smiley at 9:49 PM PST - 16 comments

More than 30 feet of water stood over land inhabited by nearly one million people. Almost 300,000 African Americans were forced to live in refugee camps for months. Many people, both black and white, left the land and never returned. "When Mother Nature rages, the physical results are never subtle. Because we cannot contain the weather, we can only react by tabulating the damage in dollar amounts, estimating the number of people left homeless, and laying the plans for rebuilding. But . . . some calamities transform much more than the landscape." No, not Katrina. The Great Mississippi flood of 1927. Author John M. Barry in his definitive work on the subject, "shows how a heretofore anti-socialist America was forced by unprecedented circumstance to embrace an enormous, Washington-based big-government solution to the greatest natural catastrophe in our history, preparing the way (psychologically and otherwise) for the New Deal." The author is a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at the Center for Bioenvironmental Research of Tulane and Xavier universities (whose web site is *understandably* not answering right now). <Heading for the library to find this book>
posted by spock at 6:14 PM PST - 12 comments

Time-lapse videos of hurricanes from space from Nasa's Marshall Space Flight Center's Camex-4 Hurricane study. [note: Quicktime]
posted by crunchland at 4:43 PM PST - 10 comments

Black people loot, white people borrow. Racist photo captions by Yahoo News/AP illuminate more than Katrina's aftermath. If these pictures are taken down, there are mirrors right here.
posted by bairey at 4:37 PM PST - 211 comments

Jerry Falwell makes outspoken comment about civil rights for gays. He's for 'em. Maybe, as SoVo.com supposes, SoulForce has succeeded in it's close quarters outreach to their old foe/ex-ally. Maybe that's a lesson to us all...
posted by dash_slot- at 4:24 PM PST - 23 comments

A horde of zombies attacked the 'American Idol ' auditions in Austin, Texas. "No one was hurt." Photo gallery. [Note: Not believed to be shilling for corporations or any specific movie.]
posted by ericb at 3:51 PM PST - 40 comments

Crashed Cars of Kuwait With a 120kph (75mph) highway speed limit, an 80kph (50mph) urban speed limit, a lot of expensive high performance cars, next to no law enforcement, driving in Kuwait can be a little, err, exciting. Psycho Milt, a New Zealander working in Kuwait, has a substantial and ever-growing flickr photoset of crashed cars he's snapped on his daily commute.
posted by noizyboy at 3:37 PM PST - 19 comments

Let the bush bashing begin. Funding for work on New Orleans' flood prevention system slowed to a trickle in 2003, and many people (long before Monday) claimed that was due to the Iraq war. [more inside]
posted by delmoi at 2:58 PM PST - 181 comments

smugMaps , photo-sharing mixed with Google Maps, allowing you to associate your photos with geographic locations. See the mysterious lost mountain city of Machu Picchu, the spectacular, lonely landscapes of Iceland, and an apartment building in St. Louis. They can't all be glamorous, folks.
posted by Gamblor at 2:17 PM PST - 11 comments

A German in Los Angeles. (link in english) Stern is running a series on a German immigrant's experience of moving to Los Angeles and the various cultural differences he's experienced, including getting cable (en) and a driver's license (en), buying a car (en) and being homesick (en), and the American love for iced drinks (en). Really interesting cultural perspective.
posted by fet at 2:09 PM PST - 23 comments

Harder than diamond. Compress C60 with heat, and get the hardest substance known. But will it be pretty?
posted by birdsquared at 1:47 PM PST - 10 comments

Jool Holland hits a high note and whilst his rythm n blues band is not evident at his happy event on the BBC website, there are others known to a UK audience. Any chance you have to catch up with this performer is worth going an extra mile, [scratch that - make it 50 miles.] Tour dates are here.
posted by Schroder at 11:01 AM PST - 21 comments

Governor Pardons All But Himself In Personnel Investigation In case y'all thought Kentucky's only problem was obesity. The local paper's article has a sidebar of related stories, including a link to a "full coverage" series on this Merit System Investigation. As he told the Grand Jury, "I would like this to be a new day."
posted by davy at 10:19 AM PST - 59 comments

The MESSENGER spacecraft launched from Cape Canaveral on August 3, 2004 and returned to Earth for its first gravity boost on the way to Mercury a year later on August 2, 2005. MESSENGER took hundreds of high-res digital photos during its Earth flyby and they've been sequenced into an amazing movie of Earth rotating over 24 hours as the spacecraft swung past at thousands of miles per hour.
posted by driveler at 10:15 AM PST - 31 comments

Talking Primates with Frans de Waal: Frans de Waal is a primatologist who's challenged male supremacy in evolution, the belief that monkeys don't perceive images as we do, and the idea that they don't possess emotions ascribed to humans. His new book, Our Inner Ape, posits that the human duality of good and evil is in fact something we've inherited directly from primates.
posted by veronica sawyer at 9:44 AM PST - 28 comments

Free Opera serial numbers. Want to try a new browser? For their 10th birthday, Opera is giving away free serial numbers for their web browser to anyone who registers. The codes are available today (August 30, 2005) only and remove the annoying ad bar. Opera is available for all major (and many minor) operating systems. You can learn more about the browser's features (like a built in BitTorrent client) or just go straight to the download page so you have somewhere to put that new registration code.
posted by revgeorge at 8:55 AM PST - 78 comments

Tim Hardin, black sheep boy. Will Robinson Sheff, of the bands Okkervil River and Shearwater, guest-blogs at Said the Gramophone and writes movingly about his hero, Tim Hardin. With mp3s.
posted by barjo at 8:47 AM PST - 11 comments

US Army auditor who attacked Halliburton deal is fired. Bunnatine Greenhouse, senior Army Contracting Specialist and the highest-ranking civilian at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), who blew the whistle on Halibuton after Halliburton subsidiary Kellog Brown & Root got $12 billion worth of exclusive contracts for work in Iraq has been fired - ostensibly for poor performance. Ms Greenhouse testified in front of Congress (pdf). She asked many questions: Why is Halliburton -- a giant Texas firm that holds more than 50 percent of all rebuilding efforts in Iraq -- getting billions in contracts without competitive bidding? Do the durations of those contracts make sense? Have there been violations of federal laws regulating how the government can spend its money? She said that the decision to award KBR a $75 million extension for troop support in the Balkans was "the most blatant and improper abuse I have witnessed" in 20 years as a government contract supervisor. Last October, she was summoned to the office of her boss. Major Gen. Robert Griffin, the Corps' deputy commander, was demoting her, he told her, taking away her Senior Executive Service status and sending her to midlevel management. She was offered early retirement, but refused. Now she's been fired.
posted by three blind mice at 8:28 AM PST - 52 comments


Where do you go to find the bleeding edge of motion graphics, visual FX , broadcast design and (QT link) music videos? Tween.
posted by pepcorn at 6:29 AM PST - 2 comments

Flickr Fans to Yahoo: Flick Off! (by Wired News). "A splinter faction of Flickr photo-sharing community members is threatening a symbolic "mass suicide" to protest closer integration with the website's new owner, Yahoo." Welcome to the Flickr Accounts Mass Suicide Countdown group - Flick Off.
posted by webmeta at 6:01 AM PST - 91 comments

The Landmark Trust. Ever wanted to stay somewhere with a little more class and history than the usual chain hotels? The landmark trust is a UK charity dedicated to restoring unique and historical buildings; they finance their work by renting them out to their members. While most of their buildings are scattered across the UK they also have four in Italy and four in New England, including Rudyard Kipling's personally designed house, Naulakha. In Florence, they have Robert and Elizabeth Browning's flat, though in Rome they only have the flat above the one in which Keats died (though it is nicely located at the Spanish steps). Unfortunately you have to pay to get the Handbook which shows all they have to offer, but featured buildings in their site include Fort Clonque, Swarkestone Pavilion and the Lutyens designed Goddards. Amongst their next goals; preventing the 1830 folly, Clavell Tower from falling into the sea. Nothing less than pr0n for the architecturally inclined.
posted by biffa at 4:59 AM PST - 8 comments

ay yo trip!
posted by Citizen Premier at 4:20 AM PST - 4 comments

Rape Charge Follows Marriage to a 14-Year-Old [NYTimes] Mr. Koso is 22. The baby's mother, Crystal, is 14. He is charged with statutory rape, even though they were wed with their parents' blessing in May, crossing into Kansas because their own state prohibits marriages of people under 17. The Nebraska attorney general accuses Mr. Koso of being a pedophile; they say it is true love.
posted by psmealey at 3:47 AM PST - 79 comments

Streetsy
posted by srboisvert at 1:46 AM PST - 15 comments


The wonderful architecture blog Transfer is the home of The Anti-Sit Archives, an astonishing collection of, well, urban ass-deflecting devices. [thanks to iconomy]
posted by mediareport at 12:45 AM PST - 17 comments

A War to Be Proud Of. Christopher Hitchens in the Weekly Standard.
posted by semmi at 12:33 AM PST - 183 comments

August 29

Pandora. Bound to draw comparisons to Last.fm, LAUNCHcast, and Musicplasma, Pandora (formerly Savage Beast) is a music discovery web application that recommends music based not on popularity, usage habits of other users, or genres/categories but on the deconstructed elements of how the music itself sounds. Fruit of the Music Genome Project, music analysts have for more than five years spent 20 minutes analyzing each song in its ever-growing database for nearly 400 distinct attributes, so when you ask it, "Why is this song playing?" It answers, "Based on what you've told us so far, we're playing this track because it features electronica influences, mild rhythmic syncopation, surreal lyrics, use of call-and-response vocals, and string section beds." (YES! Thank you!) Currently live on public beta. [Flash, 128kbps streams]
posted by Lush at 11:10 PM PST - 44 comments

It was 100 years ago today. Tyrus Raymond Cobb, humanitarian and/or killer, argubly the most talented man to play Major League Baseball, appeared in his first game for the Detroit Tigers. It was just three weeks after Cobb's mother shot to death his father.
posted by ?! at 10:56 PM PST - 14 comments

The SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) isn’t a particularly novel way of stifling dissent: indeed, there are laws in California and other US States to prevent them. Their potential for misuse has also been identified in the Australian context, which has no clear definition of protected free speech. The latest effort at a SLAPP is by Gunns Ltd., a successful forestry company based in Tasmania. They’re suing the ”Gunns 20” for charges including conspiracy and ‘vilification’ (which is not actually a tort). Defendants include a Senator, Dr Bob Brown of the Australian Greens political party. The case is being compared (by the defendants) to the infamous PR disaster McLibel case, however Gunns should perhaps get a better lawyer: their initial pleading has been described by the judge as an "unintelligible embarrassment", showing that a bit of judicial common sense can still work wonders.
posted by wilful at 10:07 PM PST - 6 comments

The winning design for the British Antarctic Survey's Halley VI station looks very futuristic. It's built on legs with skis (a runner up - walked) so that it can be moved around and avoid being buried like some 1, 2 in the past.
posted by tellurian at 9:12 PM PST - 13 comments

The country formerly known as Burma officially denies reports of a coup. Rumors circulated last week that Senior General Than Shwe had been deposed by his military regime's number-two, General Maung Aye. Burma-watchers discounted the reports, with some suggesting that the junta concocted the story as a trick. The country's "ossified leaders" blamed the BBC for the rumors, while astrologers in Rangoon believe that Than Shwe's wife spread the story. The general's wife, it seems, is worried about Mars.
posted by soiled cowboy at 5:32 PM PST - 63 comments

Cats in sinks. Nothing less, nothing more.
posted by mathowie at 3:21 PM PST - 76 comments

you'll then have a grave in the clouds where you won't lie too cramped
"No, no, I never met Paul Celan. This poem is too CLASSIC, too cold, and too difficult to follow. It does nothing to me".
Singing, Painting and the Holocaust: Interview with Leon Greenman, Auschwitz Survivor 98288
posted by matteo at 12:31 PM PST - 9 comments

Language Corner by Columbia Journalism Review, is incredibly helpful when it comes to learning the English language's subtle nuances and rather obvious rules.
posted by riffola at 12:22 PM PST - 20 comments

The most expensive $20 you’ll never see. (Unless you happen to be kickin’ it in Long Beach next month...) The 1933 “double eagle”, a one oz. gold coin minted by the United States just prior to dropping the gold standard, is now worth approximately $10,000,000 and is the stuff of coin collection legend. A collector by the name of Israel “Izzy” Switt acquired and held on to 10 of them—just after the last “double eagle” had officially been melted down by the government in 1937. (Timeline.) Now, decades later, the coins are the subject of an intense legal battle between the US government and Switt’s descendants. “It’s a hell of a story.”
posted by voltairemodern at 12:18 PM PST - 20 comments

Cow racing is serious business. Think you've got the world's fastest heifer? Can your Bessy beat Taffy's Guiness world record? Ever wonder what a cow race looks like? Sounds like? Do you feel inspired?
posted by analogue at 12:05 PM PST - 9 comments

The Lotus Eater ... a creepy gallery that has a flash interface that doesn't actually suck.
posted by crunchland at 11:54 AM PST - 30 comments

The Jack Kirby Museum opened yesterday on what would have been Kirby's 88th birthday. While just an online museum at this point, it promises to be a great resource for learning about the life and contributions Jack "The King" Kirby made to comic book culture. Largely under-credited for his role in co-creating many of Marvel's characters during the Silver Age of comics, his career spanned over 50 years.
Largely from The Jack Kirby Weblog, natch!
posted by jpburns at 4:52 AM PST - 23 comments

Don't Call Me Madam: The sad and crazy life of Ray Bourbon A pioneering drag comedian, friend of Mae West and an early independent recording artist, Ray was a deliberately enigmatic pop cult figure who may or may not have had a sex change operation in 1956. He was a frequent target of police raids and died in prison as a convicted accomplice to murder. "Ray’s comedy was, at once, highbrow and lowbrow, overtly Gay and covertly subversive. Despite his influence on Gays, he remained vague about his own sexuality."
posted by mediareport at 12:18 AM PST - 7 comments

August 28

Since Fox News wrongly identified a La Habra home as that of a terrorist, its five- member family has faced an angry backlash. A FOX correspondent named an alleged terrorist connected with the July London bombings, and went so far as to provide the man's address (deep in the heart of the O.C.) "to help local police". Unfortunately, the address was three years out of date, and the current residents who have no connection whatsoever with the former occupant are being threatened, harassed by people driving by & yelling threats at them, and have had their home vandalized by a spectacular moron with a spray can. Full story here (LA Times, use bugmenot).
posted by jonson at 11:39 PM PST - 141 comments

I encountered The Queen James Bible recently while searching for something else completely on Google. Since then, I have been looking for parodies of the Bible and have encountered several. Some are older and filled with conspiracy theories. Some are just plain bad. Some are effectively vaporware (with it's contemporary commercial sibling). And then some are just really funny. (Be sure to check out the Begat Tree.)

Of course, looking for this sort of thing will always bring up random bits and pieces, most notably the Bible according to Cheese (kind of like the Brick Testament) and Don't Dis Ejisha (flash).
posted by Hactar at 4:19 PM PST - 12 comments

Satellite photos of airplanes in flight. This is a great time-waster, but for some reason I keep looking for more (you may need to adjust the zoom bar on the page to maximum). These are all at the Atlanta airport, and I was surprised how close they were to each other.... check out the one that left before, and the one before that, and the one before that... Those are all taking off, here's one that's landing. Can anybody find any more? Or does anyone care?
posted by centerpunch at 3:36 PM PST - 55 comments

The Benedictine Vivarium "In the Benedictine tradition of reverence for human thought and creativity, the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library preserves manuscripts, printed books and art at Saint John's University and undertakes photographic projects in regions throughout the world." -- "Nearly half of HMML's holdings derive from libraries in Austria and Germany, but HMML also houses significant collections from Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, England, and Ethiopia. It holds archival materials, and of particular importance are the Archives of the Knights of Malta, housed in the National Library in Valletta, and the Archives of the Roman Inquisition, located at the Cathedral Museum in Mdina."
EXAMPLE PAGES -- Illustrations, Photographs , Paintings/Iconography, Pottery/Sculptures, Artifacts, Manuscripts and more - if this kind of thing interests you, then search around - I've only begun scratching the surface. Nb. See browser setup info at bottom of page in main link. [via]
posted by peacay at 12:28 PM PST - 9 comments

Live Local Coverage Of Hurricane Katrina New Orleans television stations WWL and WDSU are providing nonstop live coverage of Hurricane Katrina. The Mississippi Department Of Transportation has live cams along the major highways which show the massive evacuation of the coastal areas of Louisiana and Mississippi including the metropolitan areas of New Orleans and the Mississippi Gulf Coast. With gusts of 207 MPH this could set a new record for the largest hurricane to ever hit the United States.
posted by robliberal at 12:25 PM PST - 624 comments

Placebos Trigger Opioids. New research indicates that the placebo effect is physical, not merely "psychological." Brain scans show that people who believe they are getting a medication to control pain trigger the release of opioids in their brains. Those natural endorphins reduce pain.
When Karl Marx said that religion in the opiate of the masses, he may have been literally correct. If faith in an useless medication can release natural painkillers, won't faith that God will make your life less painful do the same? This might also help explain why religion is so addictive, and why many people like the POTUS pass through the gateway drugs of alcohol and cocaine only to migrate to religion and jogging, which also releases endorphins.
posted by MonkeyC at 10:27 AM PST - 66 comments

In Defense of Uncommon Sense. The Edge Reality Club responds to an op-ed by John Horgan (previously discussed here.) (Via)
posted by homunculus at 9:59 AM PST - 19 comments

Gas Money (mp3) Time for somebody to remake this novelty surf/car tune into a top 40 hit again.. ? JAN & ARNIE'S rocker from 1958. A perennial favorite covered by goofball/ garage bands like the Rip Chords, the Skeletons (a.k.a the Morrells), Cousin Al and the Relatives, and the Inner City Unit Above. ... to commemorate the new Gas Crisis. It must suck to be a Hummer Owner. ... unless it's the "Hydrogen Hummer". More covers of the song listed here.
posted by celerystick at 8:19 AM PST - 4 comments

Upon trying to find out how long it takes to bake a potato, I stumble across how to bake a potato dot com. In great detail, with pictures and explanations, the web master takes us through the process of baking a spud.

Of course, there are loads of other resources out there, on baking in the microwave, in the oven, on the barbie or by using potatoes in a variety of other ways. And if that doesn't satisfy your curiosity, Google should (2).
posted by SharQ at 8:06 AM PST - 21 comments

Gas prices too high? Try Europe. $7 a gallon? That's what drivers in Amsterdam pay. But Europeans have long adapted to high prices.
posted by Postroad at 7:18 AM PST - 117 comments

The BBC announces plans to make its TV channels available on the internet. As you already know, you can already listen to all BBC radio channels live and view news clips and some news programmes. Now the BBC has ambitions to expand its internet offer even further. Starting next year, on demand radio and tv content will be available through MyBBCPlayer, with the past seven days of programmes, along with live streaming of BBC tv channels (apparently to be restricted to UK viewers only) and access to the archives. Plans also include the ability to purchase music downloads.
posted by funambulist at 3:44 AM PST - 26 comments

Recording Industry vs. The People
I just got so aggravated about how threatening they were. I didn't do anything wrong. Why should I pay them? Patricia Santangelo looks to be the first person to take a file-sharing lawsuit to trial instead of settling with the RIAA. Now, with the help of the EFF, her lawyers have started a blog where you can track the case's progress. Is the RIAA making any friends these days?
posted by TunnelArmr at 2:38 AM PST - 32 comments

Paraphilias manifest themselves in a remarkably wide variety of behaviours; some folks like to watch, others take a more active role, and sometimes those old guys wearing trenchcoat want to show you something. Well, if you like to share, it's best not to involve a blogging gal carrying a camera phone.
posted by Mutant at 2:16 AM PST - 21 comments

August 27

Duck Doom Deluxe is a version of the old NES Duck Hunt game skinned to use the FPS gun/hand graphics from the original Doom. Windows only, apologies...
posted by jonson at 11:28 PM PST - 10 comments

The Mirror World ...a virtual tour through Seattle, WA, augmented with clips from Google Earth/Maps. [note: Quicktime]
posted by crunchland at 10:51 PM PST - 7 comments


David Segal, former pop music critic for the Washington Post, reflects on his career reviewing concerts and why most concerts leave much to be desired.
posted by Quartermass at 6:49 PM PST - 54 comments

Katrina targets New Orleans. Mandatory evacuations have been declared, and contraflow evacuation routes are in effect near New Orleans, as Hurricane Katrina, a very wet, drenching hurricane, approaches the city from the Gulf of Mexico, where it is gaining in size and strength, with an estimated 45% chance of making landfall as a category 4 or 5 hurricane. The computer models suggest that New Orleans will sustain a direct hit from Katrina, which could be "The Big One" warned about by experts, capable of flooding the city, polluting it with industrial waste, and even flooding the pump stations, leaving it incapable of pumping out the water. The hurricane is predicted to make landfall early Monday near Port Fourchon, which handles approximately 13% of U.S. oil imports, and 27% of U.S. domestic production.
posted by insomnia_lj at 6:21 PM PST - 272 comments

Are the counter protests today pro-war or something else? Photos coming into the news wires show a mixture of devout Bush loyalty, people erecting giant Ten Commandments and traitor paranoia... and not to forget.. supporting the troops. So is this just a misfire of people who simply hate protestors or do they believe in something besides waving the flag?
posted by DougieZero1982 at 5:54 PM PST - 67 comments

In the First Person "provides in-depth indexing of more than 2,500 collections of oral history in English from around the world. With future releases, the index will broaden to identify other first-person content, including letters, diaries, memoirs, and autobiographies, and other personal narratives... It allows for keyword searching of more than 260,000 pages of full-text by more than 9,000 individuals from all walks of life." You could start with the places or Historical Events listings, or just pick a keyword and dive in. (The post title is from the first interview in the collection, from July 1930, with He Dog, who was born in the same year as Crazy Horse: "We grew up together in the same band, played together, courted the girls together and fought together.") Via wood s lot.
posted by languagehat at 2:49 PM PST - 6 comments

Focus and anger already shifting away from 'Big Business' again... Thanks to scandals such as Enron, new laws such as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act were passed to improve 'corporate responsibility' and 'accuracy'. Is it working? Most businesses are calling foul saying that the law is actually an expensive and worthless record keeping exercise. IT departments seem to agree . And then there is that whole password issue. The news isn't all bad . And, a cottage industry has popped up to fill the void of non-compliance. But, as the cost keeps rising and the return on investment isn't clearly defined, can this law survive?
posted by UseyurBrain at 1:30 PM PST - 29 comments

Did the Devil bury dinosaur bones to trick people? No longer the Devil's handiwork, dinosaurs are being embraced by Christians, who have reclaimed them for Jesus.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 12:19 PM PST - 110 comments

An ad stressing the importance of good translation, and various other animations, ads and announcements. Flash, in Russian, but generally funny & self-explanatory.
posted by Wolfdog at 11:18 AM PST - 11 comments

Robert Novak gets it wrong again. Predicting that Ellsworth Air Force Base in North Dakota would fall victim to the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BARC) thus damaging the political career of Republican John Thune, Novak argued that the White House was "ignoring Thune" contradicting "the image of a White House that puts politics first. Instead, the Bush team looked like tone-deaf, old-fashioned Republicans interested more in going by the book than winning elections." Thune promised that only a Republican senator could save Ellsworth, South Dakota's largest employer, from closure. That promise played a prominent role in his campaign. In defeating senate minority leader Tom Daschle, Thune's victory marked the first time since 1952 that a party leader in the senate was defeated. When Ellsworth was nevertheless put on the list for closure, Thune's politcal future appeared doomed. As promised, Thune went into action. Yesterday, Thune announced Ellsworth is saved! Contrary to Novak's opinion, the image of a White House that puts politics first is as strong as ever.
posted by three blind mice at 10:39 AM PST - 21 comments

Cake Dance The course of true love ne'er did run smooth, particularly for Cat and Bunny (a sequel to this).
posted by SPrintF at 9:58 AM PST - 11 comments

The Forgotten Amendment: The story of the 27th Amendment to the U. S. Constitution. Back in 1982, while doing research for a government class, UT Austin student Gregory Watson stumbled across an unratified constitutional amendment from 1789. Noticing that the amendment had had no time limit for ratification, Mr. Watson embarked upon a campaign to amend the U. S. Constitution. Sadly, Watson only earned a "C" on his paper for government class, in which he'd argued the amendment was still viable.
posted by Dr. Zira at 9:46 AM PST - 14 comments

Ideophones are words that are usually spoken but not written and are often onomatopoeic, including (but not limited to) the calls—often reduplicated—with which we beckon domestic animals, kindred to our animal imitations. In the States there are many more pig calls beyond soo-ee. Maxim Gorky wrote that the sound tse tse is used to call pigs in Russia. In Spanish coch is used. Americans use pipi and biddy to call chickens and turkeys. In Ambon Malay chickens are called with kurrrrr or pan kur. In Kiswahili you call chickens with gurúgurúgurúgurú, call dogs with aháháhá, and straying cattle with ishiyeeyeeeeee or ngoyéeeeee. In Sweden, they call cattle with a loud, high-pitched kulning (akin to yodeling). Cervantes wrote that they use tus tus to call dogs in Spain. One source says in Coolderry, Ireland, they use gen-gen to call pigs to ford, puddly pudde to call ducks, peopeo to call horses, and geg geg to call geese. In Iceland, kibbakibb is used to call sheep. In the Hiligaynon language of the Philippines, they call cats with míming. In the parish of Nantcwnlle in Wales they have their own set of calls.
posted by Mo Nickels at 8:46 AM PST - 17 comments

Cops who break the law. Should a police chief be able to fire a cop for breaking the law? Not according to the cop's union.
posted by leftcoastbob at 7:42 AM PST - 35 comments


The Louvre 360  by Virtual Sweden(?) has panoramic photos of the museum. Press 'SHIFT' to zoom in, 'CTRL' to zoom out. Panorama-o-Rama.
posted by planetkyoto at 6:57 AM PST - 16 comments

All pencils. All the time.
posted by azul at 5:31 AM PST - 37 comments

This link, which you are no longer looking at, will take you to a pretty cool essay.
posted by Citizen Premier at 5:08 AM PST - 48 comments

Looks like Buk is back and Jack is On The Road again.
posted by veryape at 4:18 AM PST - 4 comments

Driver ants. Also known as siafu, the ants form colonies of up to 22 million individuals. When on the move, the workers travel in narrow ant highways which are surrounded by the larger soldier ants. Males are also known as sausage flies and are the largest ants found on earth.
posted by weretable and the undead chairs at 2:35 AM PST - 14 comments

Snakes On A Plane. Perhaps this explains why the majority of big-budget Hollywood movies in the past several years have been remakes of cult classics or popular television shows. If nothing else, we'll have a hip new catchphrase.
posted by deusdiabolus at 2:04 AM PST - 27 comments

August 26

How to strip down your computer for playing games (via the ever-useful Frog Blog)
posted by oissubke at 10:20 PM PST - 38 comments

Ladybird (aka Helen Nodding). You might have already heard about her moss graffiti project, but she has other projects worth checking out. Interview here.
posted by cali at 9:59 PM PST - 15 comments

Oakland police detaining photographers? A month after being stopped for taking photos of another building in San Francisco, blogger Thomas Hawk & some friends were detained for 20 minutes by an Oakland police officer for taking photos in the downtown warehouse district. Among the topics of debate in the post's comments: was racial profiling an issue? is/should there even be a right to take the officer in question's photo? are SF residents more paranoid than the rest of us? is detaining a group of photographers a good use of police time? will commenters ever learn to spell "fascist" properly? and much more...
posted by bitter-girl.com at 9:13 PM PST - 38 comments

Stimulating the male G-spot: The medically researched and designed Aneros was originally created to safely and effectively massage the prostate, relieve congested prostate fluid, and promote general prostate health. It is anatomically tailored to the male body. When it was initially released, the Aneros worked like designed and greatly improved the quality of lives for many of our customers. However, in addition to reporting improved prostate health, many of our users reported experiencing unbelievable orgasms and unique pleasure that, while different from a traditional penile orgasm, could only be described as "orgasmic."

And the best thing is, you don't have to charge any batteries neither do you have to use your hands. It's completely sphincter operated!

You can also just put it on your mantle piece and call it modern art. [Links might be NSFW, but no naked pictures]
posted by kika at 8:01 PM PST - 62 comments

Everything you always wanted to know about urine but were afraid to ask.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 7:51 PM PST - 14 comments

Dance Dance Immolation. Yeah, it's going to be at Burning Man, where else? I like video games that punish.
posted by Extopalopaketle at 7:31 PM PST - 8 comments


An iPod repair shop with a silly bovine mascot. Cautionary tape for what YOUR iPod might be in for once you send it away for repair. Friday Night at the Silly.
posted by Jazznoisehere at 7:12 PM PST - 8 comments

Never want to work again? Maybe you need a sugar daddy.
Not too much in California, so it seems I'm out of luck.
posted by starscream at 6:29 PM PST - 16 comments

John Walker's method How and when to pay attention -- by the author of the Evil Empires bumper sticker and other treasures.
posted by hank at 6:00 PM PST - 15 comments

The minstrel show is alive and well. In case you were in any doubt that Williamsburg is chock full of unbelievable wankers, Jeremy Parker brings us Kill Whitie, a hip hop dance party by whitie, for whitie... to mock non-whitie (possibly NSFW). I mean, how is this really all that different from, say, this?
posted by dersins at 5:41 PM PST - 177 comments

The Outbursts of Everett True is a collection of cartoons from 1906. Each one is identical, two panels arranged vertically, and in each one, the top panel shows a large gentleman being accosted by boors of various sorts (boring people, indecisive people, people who want him to give them money, etc) and in the bottom panel it shows him issuing the offenders a vigorous beating. It's fantastic for both the language of archaic anger ("The bumps for you, and all of your kind!") and the subject matter ("why doesn't he have a telephone of his own??") that drives the protagonist to violence. via
posted by jonson at 4:13 PM PST - 29 comments

Try this with your recumbent bike. Big (~40mb) mpg.
posted by fixedgear at 3:33 PM PST - 29 comments

Art Rage: An unfortunate name for a really fun program. From the site: "ArtRage is all about playing with paint without the mess, and having fun in the process. You can paint your own image from a blank canvas to completed work, or load in a picture to trace and have the tools pick their colours for you as you paint over it." Friday fun that can keep you occupied all weekend. Enjoy.
posted by FunkyHelix at 2:37 PM PST - 9 comments

Walk out over 4,000 feet of thin air... Man, it gives me the willies just to think about being out there.
posted by soyjoy at 1:27 PM PST - 33 comments

I’m trying to make individuals within families. I ask myself, how can you create one-offs, while you are actually working with an industrial, serial production technology? I’m trying to raise both of them, unique objects and serial output, to a higher level of quality. Quite a theme, isn’t it? Hella Jongerius creates custom products/ art that utilizes a mixture of hand and industrial, mass production techniques. It is quite a theme, yes.
posted by Phantast at 1:06 PM PST - 3 comments

Backyard Pit Bull Breeders "I like having very vicious, angry dogs. I'm going to teach them not to like other dogs. I'm going to agitate them, make them aggressive. That way when it's about business, they are going to be serious." Are guys like this the reason that we keep hearing horror stories like these? Are Pit Bulls inherently dangerous?
posted by echolalia67 at 1:01 PM PST - 94 comments

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posted by Capn at 12:52 PM PST - 34 comments

Loco loco mosquito - QT animation. (via milinkito)
posted by madamjujujive at 12:08 PM PST - 8 comments

Livingsoft sucks? EULAs vs. "First Sale" doctrine. Ed Foster covers the story of a woman who attempted to sell her legal copy of Livingsoft's Dress Shop 5 Pro sewing-pattern-producing software on eBay, resulting in harrassment from Livingsoft's president towards her and the prospective buyer. The article and resulting discussion about EULAs and software purchases vs. licences is full of interesting perspectives.

If you pay sales tax for a tool, and discover upon opening it that a non-negotiable EULA exists, which prevents you from reselling but does not obligate the manufacturer to the responsibilities of ownership (maintenance, etc.), then who is the owner? Is the EULA valid?
posted by Tubes at 10:48 AM PST - 20 comments

The FBI has issued the first demand for library records under the Patriot Act. The library in question is somewhere in Bridgeport, CT. The ACLU is seeking an emergency court order to lift the FBI gag order, but they've been instructed by the gag to keep the person whose library records being sought (i.e., their client) a secret. What the ACLU has revealed is that the client is a member of the American Library Association (clearly, a front for terrorism). If any MeFites are interested in digging up additional details on this and start making calls, here's a good place to start. What indeed would the FBI consider so threatening?
posted by ed at 10:46 AM PST - 57 comments

The American Legion calls for an end to all anti-war public protests. "The American Legion will stand against anyone and any group that would demoralize our troops, or worse, endanger their lives by encouraging terrorists to continue their cowardly attacks against freedom-loving peoples."
posted by The Jesse Helms at 10:28 AM PST - 123 comments

Just another escape - flash Friday. Not quite up to the level of Takagism, but I am not out yet.
posted by caddis at 10:16 AM PST - 13 comments


Half Man Half Biscuit - Britain's funniest band? Their site contains recordings from BBC sessions including such greats as The Light at the End of the Tunnel (Is the Light of an Uncoming Train) and 24 Garage People (amongst others). If those lyrics make no sense to you then you can see explanations on these pages which are quite entertaining on their own.
posted by dodgygeezer at 9:40 AM PST - 16 comments

This gallery of National Lampoon magazine covers coupled with Mikes' Very Large National Lampoon Site should help you waste several minutes.
posted by me3dia at 9:34 AM PST - 10 comments

We know you can read Pepys diaries a page a day online. (Previous Mefi post here.) But there are more. Kafka's Diaries. W.N.P Barbellion's diaries (The Journal of a Disappointed Man, highly recommended.) The Diary of a Nobody (the page a day seems to be down, but the whole Punch series is here.) The Notebooks of Da Vinci. Henry David Thoreau, day by day. Fibroid Sludge, the cartoon diary of Irven Spence. A previous MeFi post on Martha Ballard's historical diary. And of course, that diary of one day, Ulysses, a page a day.
posted by OmieWise at 9:04 AM PST - 11 comments

I thought you left "I am amicably leaving the Drudge Report after a long and close working relationship with Matt Drudge... I am also excited to be a partner in an inspired new endeavor, the Huffington Post." This was written May 26th but Drudge is linking to this "raucous, opinionated, red meat eating libertarian-leaning conservative" more than ever.
posted by j.p. Hung at 8:22 AM PST - 28 comments

Fractal Eggs and how to make them.
posted by WolfDaddy at 8:08 AM PST - 19 comments

Damn, I likes me some catfish! The Giant Mekong Catfish isn't the only big fish to be found, though. Sadly, the behemoth is facing extinction, largely due to overfishing. Fortunately, some are working on saving the fish. Of course, fish aren't only found in the water.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 7:49 AM PST - 19 comments

Kodee Kennings, meet Kaycee Nicole. For two years the Daily Egyptian, the college paper of Southern Illinois University, published a column written by a young girl whose father was serving in Iraq. Two weeks ago, Sgt. Dan Kennings was reported killed in an attack on his Humvee, and the Chicago Tribune sent its reporters to cover the memorial service. Instead, they uncovered an hoax even grander in scale than one close to this site.
posted by holgate at 6:31 AM PST - 73 comments


Why does everyone want to be a pimp? Somewhere in America a pimp is just getting out of his pimp bed. He drinks some pimp juice out of his pimp cup, slips into his pimp suit, and grabs his pimp hat and pimp watch on the way out of his pimp house. Crossing the street (careful to avoid any pimp-beating karate masters), he slides into his pimp ride and heads off to get his genome pimped.
posted by selfnoise at 4:11 AM PST - 75 comments

What Song am I Singing?
Also, what song can you sing.
Also, show me your favourite flickr photographs.
Also, Just Do It.
posted by seanyboy at 3:44 AM PST - 55 comments


Do you suffer from mobile telephone calls at inopportune times? Could you use a cute PA to take calls for you while gaming, or asleep? A dissertation project from MIT by HCI specialist Stefan Marti may have your solution: Cellular Squirrel.

Of course you will always want to talk to people who are thinking the same things as you, so Cellular Squirrel waves and moves about rather than making a sound. His oddly bulbous figure makes use of "socially strong non-verbal cues like gaze, posture, and gestures, to alert and interact with the user" rather than intrusive alerts in order to minimise user stress and social disruption.

Cellular intermediaries also come in two other flavours: "a parrot and a cute bunny"
posted by NinjaPirate at 3:15 AM PST - 12 comments

Trees don't suck as much as hoped. In an paper published in the journal Nature, Swiss scientists challenge the belief held by some that rising levels of atmospheric CO2 will make the Earth a greener greenhouse. The belief that forests act as carbon sinks is a key aspect of the Kyoto protocol. Heavily forested nations such as Canada lobbied hard for the recognition that forest and agricultural land management practices that absorb and store carbon dioxide from the atmosphere contribute significantly towards achieving the Kyoto greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions limitation and reduction targets. These beliefs may be overstated. "Some scientists and politicians cling to the idea that a carbon-dioxide-rich future might favour the greening of planet Earth. It's time to disillusion them," says Christian Körner, one of the scientists who authored the paper.
posted by three blind mice at 2:44 AM PST - 16 comments

August 25

CENTCOM trolls for a blogger to help with the propaganda--but he picks Jesus' General --I am a Public Affairs Officer writing from US Central Command. I would like to inquire about the possibility of you posting a link to our web site. I see that you are covering a lot of different types of stories in a lot of countries. I would like to get some of the stories out that are happening in Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Horn of Africa. ... Gen. JC Christian, patriot, of course responds with an even better idea, and cc:s Pat Robertson.
posted by amberglow at 9:53 PM PST - 20 comments


The Human Zoo exhibit at the London Zoo aims to "demonstrate the basic nature of man as an animal and examine the impact that Homo sapiens have on the rest of the animal kingdom." The public takes part in the display (fig leaves required). "Over four days the 'animals' will be cared for by the zoo's keepers and 'kept entertained through various forms of enrichment...'" There are even some photos of them monkeying around.
posted by Moral Animal at 8:36 PM PST - 17 comments

...This is one of the reasons why I am convinced that Zionism should not simply be dismissed. Hans Kohn turned away from Zionism, but Martin Buber and Ahad Ha'am definitely did not. If Zionism can produce voices such as these, this is evidence of a fermentation of rare value. Discovering thinkers like Martin Buber and Hannah Arendt and Ahad Ha'am was like encountering pieces of coral from a deep pool. I had read Arendt and indeed some of Buber's work before, but I did not anticipate the sheer prescience of their critique of Zionism. For example, Arendt predicted that the Jewish state would become utterly reliant on American force, and live 'surrounded by an entirely hostile Arab population' in which all 'development would be determined exclusively by the need of war'; this is so accurate, it sends a shudder down your back. Then there was the romantic, semi-mystical discourse of Buber and Ahad Ha'am, posing the question of who we are at its most profound. Their vocabulary revolves around spirituality, selfhood, self-knowledge, truth, understanding, denial. In order to put into words the perils of Zionism, these thinkers had to explore why people can desire identities that become ultimately destructive...

from an interview with Jacqueline Rose, who wrote The Question of Zion via Open Democracy
posted by y2karl at 7:51 PM PST - 30 comments

"When I read his work, I forgive him all his sins". Edmund Wilson disliked being called a critic. He thought of himself as a journalist, and nearly all his work was done for commercial magazines, principally Vanity Fair, in the nineteen-twenties; The New Republic, in the nineteen-twenties and thirties; The New Yorker, beginning in the nineteen-forties; and The New York Review of Books, in the nineteen-sixties. He was exceptionally well read: he had had a first-class education in English, French, and Italian literature, and he kept adding languages all his life. He learned to read German, Russian, and Hebrew; when he died, in 1972, he was working on Hungarian.
Edmund Wilson and American culture. (more inside)
posted by matteo at 7:21 PM PST - 12 comments


Pentagon to close Walter Reed Medical Center
More than 3,700 doctors and other medical personnel will be moved to a new and expanded facility to be built at the Navy's National Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., a few miles away. The move will cost nearly $989 million, and is expected to save more than $301 million over 20 years as the Pentagon seeks to streamline care and provide state of the art medical treatment for wounded servicemen and women.
And saving $301 million over 20 years is better than spending a billion dollars within the next 2 years, how? And never mind those 18,000+ American casualties coming back from the M.E. I'm sure they'll be able to improvise bedrolls during the renovations up in Bethesda...
posted by vhsiv at 4:55 PM PST - 42 comments

Jeff Chapman (Ninjalicious of Infiltration.org) dies. He created Infiltration, the zine that documented and instructed the practice of "urban exploration" (spelunking in buildings where you're not supposed to go). Discovering his zine led me to understand that my lengthy time-killing in the catacombs of the Ontario provincial government was an activity with an actual name - and purpose. Chapman, a liver-transplant recipient, died in Toronto of cancer at age 31. Details from his wife. (Previous mention)
posted by joeclark at 4:32 PM PST - 29 comments

Lysol?
posted by jonson at 3:51 PM PST - 79 comments

Living on top of Mt. Washington. 09:50 PM Thu Aug 18, 2005 EDT - ... In the air this morning there was an undeniable chill and on the ground a touch of frost...Clear air pooling south from Canada opened views to the distant Adirondacks as well as deep into Quebec and all our surrounding states...just six week until snow can be expected.
Just a taste of this daily "blog" kept by observers living on the top of the tallest peak in the Northeast US. Redux of a previous post, but the blog is interesting enough to put it forth once again.
posted by Jazznoisehere at 2:18 PM PST - 24 comments

Smithsonian's latest exhibit includes catastrophic leaks that are damaging priceless treasures. Many items have been destroyed beyond repair and the problem seems to be getting worse. Will certain history be wiped out for good because officials lacked foresight?
posted by Guerilla at 2:02 PM PST - 17 comments

Remember how you wrote when you were in high school? Would you have been secure enough to post one of your essays online? [.doc files] Essay.org has compiled a collection of essays (in various languages), in order to "provide free essays for entertainment, education, and publishing." (My favorites are definitely the persuasive essays.)
posted by voltairemodern at 1:48 PM PST - 19 comments

The Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness are a special set-aside in the Superior National Forest in the north woods of Minnesota. Containing over 1,000 lakes and streams, 2,200 designated campsites, and 1,500 miles of canoe routes, this treasure provides a great place to escape from the world of civilization. It also, apparently, provides a great reason for cool websites. The Swanson party website is one of the most impressive feats of private naturalism I've seen. It has everything from the 68 types of ferns and fern allies you can find in the BWCAW to lake commentaries for 356 of the biggest (and smallest) lakes that travelers encounter. There's also the DC3 website, which has diaries and pictures from a group of BW adventurers from 1977 to 2003. A truly impressive effort, if apparently not ...quite... finished. And while the diaries tell a story arc about a group of friends, the distance between the stories always leaves tantalizing details for the reader to imagine. Such as this tidbit at the end of the 1986 trip, which has as its central detail the fact that one of the party's wives received major burns and had to leave early:
They traveled almost ten miles and portaged four times, (a total of 465 rods), before they reached Snowbank Lake. The wind was very strong. They had to cross the lake the long way and directly into the wind. At one point they didn't move for twenty minutes even though they paddled as hard as they could. They finally reached the landing and headed for the A&W in Ely. From there, Tur called home to check on Beeps. There was no answer. But that's another story.
Naturally, there are also messageboards set up to discuss trips to the BWCAW, advocacy organizations to make sure it stays wild, and you can even make entry point reservations online nowadays. The Bee Dub previously referenced here on MeFi
posted by norm at 1:40 PM PST - 15 comments

According to the LA Times, "[g]raffiti is a growing part of the landscape as taggers deface parks and canyons" in California. While the tone of the article was overwhelmingly negative towards the pictographs, people have been painting on these same rocks for millenia. Ancient pictographs and petroglyphs add to our understanding of what the people who lived before us were like; won't contempory pictographs help future anthropologists understand us?
posted by hellx at 12:07 PM PST - 62 comments

Help! Mom! There are Liberals Under My Bed! (54 pp., illustrated, "The story of two boys who dream about opening a lemonade stand when a strange thing happens...") Don't miss the excerpt [pdf] and the "cast of 'characters'" links on the left. Feel free to skip the author's note. (via.)
posted by nobody at 11:35 AM PST - 74 comments

Top 10 What Have the Brits Ever Done For Us? - An Irish view. Featuring at #2: the potato famine - apparently much worse than the lesser known 1783 garlic cheese & chips famine, some people resorted to eating each other - starting with the fat sister in the house - "there'd be plenty of eating in her, y'know..."Streaming Flash, Sense of humour required
posted by dash_slot- at 10:52 AM PST - 27 comments

Goldwing Retriever
A Swedish company named Coming Through has developed a Honda GL1800 powered motorcycle mounted towing rig that lets the bike weave through traffic, arrive at the broken down car quickly, unfold the towing rig and then haul a car of up to 5500 pounds away before the traditional towtruck can even get there!
Here's a photo gallery and videos of the system in action. via
posted by fenriq at 10:41 AM PST - 35 comments

Blogger claims to hack National Zoo panda name vote. The National Zoo has opened its poll on the name for the new baby panda. Readers of DCist, Wonkette, and other Washington blogs quickly developed the nickname "Butterstick" for the infant panda, based on the oft-quoted description of the panda's birth weight. "Butterstick" was of course not among the name choices on the Zoo's website. So bloggers went ahead and altered the voting form, allowing you to select that name.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 10:11 AM PST - 31 comments

Playing a Platinum Record.
[via via]
posted by togdon at 9:48 AM PST - 29 comments

Greta got a blog. Greta Van Susteren is blogging now, or at least posting articles on foxnews.com and using the word 'blog' in the process. You can read her thoughts on the grave epidemic of missing white women this country faces!
posted by delmoi at 9:11 AM PST - 64 comments

Big Balloons!!!
posted by Capn at 9:06 AM PST - 44 comments

WeblogsInc Contract for Bloggers. If you have ever been curious what the writers for Weblogs Inc are held to, and get paid. I imagine that there are contract tweaks here and there for more in-demand talent, but it breaks down to $500 for 125 posts a month.
posted by jonah at 7:04 AM PST - 44 comments

Luc Ferrari 1929-2005
posted by ubueditor at 6:38 AM PST - 10 comments

The Mad Genius from the Bottom of the Sea
Unlimited energy. Fast-growing fruit. Free air-conditioning. John Piña Craven says we can have it all by tapping the icy waters of the deep.
posted by Edible Energy at 6:03 AM PST - 33 comments

The first time as tragedy... Two of the three historic US' biggest auto makers (the other became a subsidiary of a German firm a few years back) just had their stocks rated as junk by Moody's, victims of a changing marketplace and demographics. Last time, Chrysler got a bailout from the US government, although maybe it would've been better if that hadn't happened. Would the Fed'rul Gummint step in again, or just let the dinosaurs' extinction proceed?
posted by alumshubby at 5:27 AM PST - 71 comments

August 24

Prostatitis is a Tension Disorder. Researchers from The Stanford University Department of Urology have come to the conclusion that "approximately 95% of symptoms that are commonly diagnosed as prostatitis [are] not caused by an infection or inflammation of the prostate gland."
They have identified a group of chronic pelvic pain syndromes which are the result of an overzealous use of the instinct to protect the genital area. Their web site devoted to these findings is www.pelvicpainhelp.com.
Their research shows that chronic pelvic pain along with negative emotions, anxiety and rage create a self-perpetuating cycle. Anxiety in certain individuals expresses itself through tension in the pelvic floor area and the "overuse" of the instinct to protect the genital region. That physical tension in turn adds to the emotional anxiety and stress, which in turn creates more pelvic tension as the cycle reinforces itself.
In a study of their treatment protocol, 72% of patients were considered moderately improved or markedly improved.
The third edition of their book A Headache in the Pelvis: A New Understanding and Treatment for Prostatitis and Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndromes , by David Wise Ph.D. and Rodney Anderson M.D., which describes the syndromes and the Stanford treatment protocol, has just been released.
While prostatitis is a male problem because only men have a prostate, chronic pelvic pain is a problem that affects both men and women because both have a pelvic floor with many of the same muscles.
This is a revolutionary theory considering the number of men who have been told by their doctors that prostatitis is just an inevitable part of growing old.
posted by MonkeyC at 10:38 PM PST - 24 comments

I want your child ... and nothing else! The newest reality show from billionaire, and Big Brother creator, John de Mol about a woman looking for a sperm donor to conceive a child. Sounds like more great programming.
posted by benkolb at 10:21 PM PST - 30 comments

M A T E R I A L
R E M A T E R I A L I Z E
R E M A T E R I A L I Z E D
A 14-letter word on a 15-row Scrabble board, and other adventures at the 2005 National Scrabble Championship. Check out the final board and try putting some of those words into sentences.
posted by icontemplate at 9:52 PM PST - 48 comments

Supernatural flashes and light leaks! The page layout is surely not the best of the web (forgivaness-- you've got to scroll past some bad 1998-vintage ads to get to the meat) but the credulous explanations for the photographic anomalies are some of the best leaps of logic I've seen posted anywhere. From cigarette smoke to light leaks, these guys leave no preternatural stone unturned.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:55 PM PST - 44 comments

Modern history is replete with assassinations that have a dramatic impact on national and international politics: the killing of Alexander II by anarchists in 1881 unleashed repression and anti-semitism in the Russian empire; the shooting of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria in June 1914 in Sarajevo sparked the "great war" that drowned Europe in blood and inaugurated what Eric Hobsbawm calls "the short 20th century"; the assassination of the liberal Colombian politician Jorge Gaitan in 1948 (a day after he had met a Latin American youth delegation that included the 21-year-old Fidel Castro) helped spark a civil war – the violencia – that continues to this day and the shooting down on 6 April 1994 of the plane carrying Rwanda's and Burundi's presidents, Juvenal Habyarimana and Cyprien Ntaryamira precipitated the Rwandan genocide.

Political killing in the cold war [& thereafter] provides an outline of the aftereffects of assassinations, covert killings, state and judicial executions.
posted by y2karl at 4:42 PM PST - 37 comments

Formula One car "skin" provides it's own power. A potentially very cool application of nanotechnology might appear on F1 cars as early as next season.
posted by Jazznoisehere at 2:03 PM PST - 34 comments

Mullah Wildmon issues FATWA against long gone internet magazine. Donald Wildmon, leader of victorious conservative cultural elitist group AFA, speaks out against the dangers of using the word "suck" in current advertising by the Dish Network to describe their competitor, cable TV. After you've used their complaint mill, please be sure to stop by the store on your way out.
posted by rzklkng at 1:22 PM PST - 53 comments


A Trip Down Market Street Before the Fire (1905). Pictures San Francisco's main thoroughfare as seen from the front window of a moving Market Street cable car, before the downtown area was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake and fire.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 11:06 AM PST - 26 comments

silicones [ISO/IEC 10918-1:1994] [silicones silicones [ISO/IEC 11172-3:1993]]
posted by Pretty_Generic at 10:41 AM PST - 25 comments

Kabbalah Energy Drink is a combination of Kabbalah Water and and energy drink. The makers are "courting the Red Bull market" according to Darin Ezra, head of the LA Kabbalah center.
posted by Suparnova at 10:24 AM PST - 35 comments

Glenn Feron - The Art of Retouching
(warning, site is potentially NSFW)
The site is slow but his work is impressive, taking fairly dull celebrity shots and shining them up to magazine quality perfection.
Previous retouching post with a link to a site with a much nicer interface but nowhere near as much content.
posted by fenriq at 10:04 AM PST - 70 comments

Critical Mass in Milwaukee ran into some "problems" with police on the July 29th ride: “I unfortunately chose to lock my bike with a friend and go see what was happening with the group who had been stopped at the yellow light. I ran down the street just in time to see police tackle a man on a bike who had a baby carriage attached to end of his bike. After he was pulled to the ground another officer violently pushed over his baby carriage with the baby inside,” More coverage and some photos.
posted by nTeleKy at 8:56 AM PST - 125 comments

Hugo Chávez is crazy! Hugo Chávez is certainly making a lot of news these days. No doubt we'll find the truth somewhere between "evil dictator" and "third world savior," but the long, dark history of U.S. involvement in Latin America casts suspicion on everything. Chávez is gaining a heroic light in the third world for "standing up to" the United States. He's making friends with Cuba, China and Iran. Is Chávez heading up a new rogues' gallery ... or gearing up for the resource wars?
Previous MetaFilter coverage: [1,2,3,4]
posted by jefgodesky at 8:25 AM PST - 62 comments

Ten years ago today, Microsoft released a massive overhaul of their flagship product — Windows 95. It added support for 256-character mixed-case long filenames, pre-emptive multitasking, and protected-mode 32-bit applications. Detractors noted that its updated interface owed a number of debts to Apple's MacOS and IBM's OS/2. Most importantly, however, Windows 95 included built-in support for dial-up networking and a TCP/IP stack. Once this technology was widely-available, it was only a matter of time until the Internet became a household word.
posted by Plutor at 8:00 AM PST - 80 comments

Ourmedia needs volunteer moderators. Ourmedia, which provides "free storage and free bandwidth for your videos, audio files, photos, text or software" is doing well. Too well. The current volunteer moderator team of 40 is faced with the overwhelming task of reviewing the submitted content of 40,000 users for copyright and other policy violations, on which their open submission policy depends. If you'd like to get involved, now would be the time.
posted by Caviar at 7:08 AM PST - 6 comments

In three different decisions, the Californa Supreme Court has ruled that gay and lesbian couples who raise children are lawful parents and must provide for their children if they break up. Lambda urged the court to rule in favor of finding gays and lesbians as lawful parents under California law "to protect families." The National Center for Lesbian Rights hailed the decisions as "a tremendous victory for children, for parental responsibility, and for common sense." Links to the decisions here, here, and here. (all pdf) Mathew Staver of Liberty Counsel "a nonprofit litigation, education and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of human life and the traditional family" derided the decision as defying logic "and common sense by saying that children can have two moms. That policy establishes that moms and dads as a unit are irrelevant when it comes to raising children."
posted by three blind mice at 6:19 AM PST - 57 comments

Subtitles on the radio. Last night Radio 1, the BBC's flagship youth station, broadcast an hour of Welsh language music and chat. The webcast includes subtitles.
posted by ceiriog at 5:18 AM PST - 6 comments

Anti-Japan War Online "The game will allow players, especially younger players, to learn from history. They will get a patriotic feeling when fighting invaders to safeguard their motherland" The background for "Anti-Japan War Online" is the Japanese invasion of China during World War II, from 1937 through 1945. Nothing like a good MMORPG to foster a little patriotism.
posted by bigmusic at 4:57 AM PST - 20 comments

August 23

Henry Jacobs is, a unique and mostly forgotten (but recently reissued) sound artist and humorist, an inventor of surround sound and, apparently, really really good at left handed ping-pong.
posted by gilgamix at 10:42 PM PST - 6 comments

Our Caribbean Cruise. I am not quite sure what to make of this. A man takes his dying wife on a carribean cruise and seems determined to take a photo of every moment of their time togther for the folks back home. At times sad and poignant, especially at the end, and at other times a curious mixture of the tedious and creepy. A very human story.
posted by vac2003 at 10:26 PM PST - 45 comments

Jon Stewart in Wired
posted by Mephistopheles at 9:55 PM PST - 60 comments

Google Talk Connect with their client, or yours. It runs on the first Jabber network with more than two users!
posted by angry modem at 9:21 PM PST - 77 comments

The Tantra Chair (NSFW) seems like a great addition to any modern living room.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 9:08 PM PST - 49 comments

The experimental wake-up drug CX717 is the the talk of the internets. But who needs it when Modafinil (aka Provigil, aka Alertec) has been available by prescription since 2001? And if you don't want to get a prescription, there's always Adrafinil, its metabolic precursor, which is marketed as a "supplement". After all, caffeine is, like, soooo last century.
posted by exhilaration at 8:16 PM PST - 24 comments


Rain, Rain, Don't Go Away
posted by JeffL at 8:10 PM PST - 11 comments

Thudguard: proudly creating a generation of children who randomly slam their heads into the ground after not learning the do-not-hurt-head part of growing up.
posted by pivotal at 7:35 PM PST - 35 comments


It's baby killing time. Taking on one of the most highly charged questions in the abortion debate, a team of doctors has concluded that fetuses probably cannot feel pain in the first six months of gestation and therefore do not need anesthesia during abortions.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 4:46 PM PST - 106 comments

Scientists speed up light, causing it to travel faster than "c," the long recognized speed of light in a vacuum. This, like the experiments conducted several years ago to briefly stop light, are hard for the average person to comprehend, but have important applications in fiberoptic communications.
posted by awesomebrad at 4:29 PM PST - 38 comments

2005 Ironbutt Rally Begins Ninety motorcyclists will be criss-crossing North America for the next 10 days, riding thousands of miles and visiting obscure spots of every description. Robert Higdon's reports are an entertaining way to find out what's happening to whom. Previous years' reports are interesting too.
Some people have competed on totally inappropriate machines.
You probably can't get invited to run in the Rally, but you could ride one of your own.
posted by spacewrench at 3:57 PM PST - 11 comments

Books altered to create poetry. "Altered books" is an art form which transforms pages from old books into works of art. There is the International Society of Altered Book Artists and this art form was previously discussed here. These artists find the poems hidden in the text of the books. I particularly like Meghan Scott's work. via Jorn
posted by caddis at 3:36 PM PST - 14 comments

A clash of British Steel. Ozzy and Harriet Sharon get down on the Dickinson for outing Ozzy as a teleprompted addler. An anonymous backstage view here. More discussion care of our friends at I love Music.
posted by klangklangston at 2:33 PM PST - 40 comments

Building a better bug Scientists at a top US vaccine research lab have announced the creation of a new form of Eschericia coli, the endemic and (usually) harmless bacteria, that colonises the mucal membranes of mice and secretes a custom-built peptide. The goal? A novel method of blocking the sexual transmission of HIV in humans.
posted by docgonzo at 1:57 PM PST - 28 comments

Sputnik rides again: Follow the amazing adventures of Sputnik the crocadilly. What was he up to August 7th? In metioning anything crocky, we should give a shout out to old Rol.
posted by ewkpates at 12:08 PM PST - 1 comments


The scammer gets scammed in this tale of an ebay auction gone hilarious as well as many other fine pranks. Favorites include the credit card prank and the Chinese tattoo prank. What is also hilarious is when the Nigerian E-mail Scammers target Pro Poker Player Paul Phillips, and get schooled themselves.
posted by Mroz at 9:09 AM PST - 51 comments

The second Indigenous Nations' Games of Para doesn't have a website and there's not even an AP story describing the events, but there are a lot of photos from the games.
posted by hellx at 8:44 AM PST - 6 comments

An unexpected side effect of iTunes. Remember Bowie Bonds? Introduced in 1997, bonds tied to future profits of music artists (besides Bowie, James Brown and the Isley Brothers offered them) tanked with the advent of online filesharing. Thanks to iTunes, some on Wall Street are betting that the Bowie Bond is a concept with a future.
posted by me3dia at 8:41 AM PST - 16 comments

Does public radio sound fresh to you? Ira Glass is interviewed about the current state of public radio, as well as the ongoing experiment of re-tooling This American Life for TV. From the CJR.
posted by Jazznoisehere at 8:40 AM PST - 30 comments

Panos - 105 Fake road signs by 47 artists world-wide. {site is flash. best way to see them all is go through "artists"}
posted by dobbs at 7:53 AM PST - 23 comments

The Salisbury Project. Images, maps and essays about the cathedral and town.
posted by plep at 6:40 AM PST - 4 comments

Google's big announcement due on Wednesday. Google is due to make an announcement on Wednesday of a new service focusing on presence and communication. The word on the internets is that it will be a chat and IM client. Google already has a chat client in the picture sharing app, Hello, which is available in both standalone install and as part of Picasa. Possible screenshot of the app is here, with additional coverage at BigBlueBall and Neowin. The prevalent consensus seems to be that it will be (or be based on ) Jabber, (PDF) with the core innovation being the use of XMPP.
posted by rzklkng at 6:32 AM PST - 122 comments

To the Venerable Brethren, the Patriarchs, Primates, Archbishops, Bishops and other Local Ordinaries in Peace and Communion with the Holy See. As much fun as I get from reading the blog of Jesus' General "an 11 on the manly scale of absolute gender" nothing beats the confused raving of Vernoica Lueken and her Virgin Mary's End-Times Prohphecies. Concerned about TERRORISM? Worried about the ominous spread of Red Chinese Tentacles? Heaven's Home Protection Packet is what you need. Caught away from home without your sacramentals? Heaven's Personal Protection Packet will surround you with the "aura of purity" you need in these troubled times. Vernoica's even posted a letter proving she's not nutters.
posted by three blind mice at 5:37 AM PST - 9 comments

Pump up the volume: Utah, 8/20/2005. A small fully permitted outdoor Drum and Bass gathering called "Versus 2" was the scene of a surreal amount of excessive force and tactics of cultural intimidation. Approximately 60 armored, helmeted and camouflaged Utah County Sheriffs officers armed with Police dogs, Tasers, MP5 submachine guns, rifles, batons and tear gas stormed the DJ booth and the dance floor. Still and video camera operators were singled out for abuse, police violence and confiscation of image recording devices. At least one video clip has made it to the net, helping spread the news globally within the Electronic Dance Music community within 24 hours. (Video Links: please use the torrents here or randomly choose one server here (1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ) to help spread out the bandwidth costs.) Flashback to 6/31/2005 in the Czech Republic. Flashback to 70 years ago. More coverage: Daily Kos - Utah Indymedia - Drug Policy Alliance - Democracy Now (Audio) - more.
posted by loquacious at 12:22 AM PST - 196 comments

August 22

Pat Robertson calls for the assassination of Hugo Chavez. Robertson, founder of the Christian Coalition of America and a former presidential candidate, said on "The 700 Club" it was the United States' duty to stop Chavez from making Venezuela a "launching pad for communist infiltration and Muslim extremism."
posted by billysumday at 8:51 PM PST - 300 comments

Augusten Burroughs sued for defamation. The family featured in Burroughs' memoir Running With Scissors claims the author cruelly twisted their kindness into abuse to make a quick buck. The contested book is currently being made into a film , with the always entertaining Brian Cox playing the sketchy psychiatrist who adopts the adolescent Burroughs, Joseph Fiennes as the pedophile, Alec Baldwin as the father, and Annette Benning as the bipolar mother. Burroughs has been a long-time contributor to Salon. [This is old news (July 31st) that has only just been widely circulated in the past week.]
posted by ibeji at 8:41 PM PST - 19 comments


Glassy eyes. The German art of glass eye blowing was developed in Lauscha, Germany in 1835 using cryolite glass. It's a dying art, Australia has only one practitioner in the country. This slow loading but fascinating video [sorry, Windows media] shows the process (apparently in the time it takes to drink a cup of tea). With a family history in the trade and a pioneer in contact lens development, this man's daughter feels that her father is in need of a bit of recognition.
posted by tellurian at 7:48 PM PST - 12 comments

Deadheads go postal.
posted by xowie at 4:18 PM PST - 35 comments

The Mutaween - Saudi Arabia's Authority for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, is rigid in it's enforcement of Wahabist Shari`a. It's website offers a list of banned consumer goods, along with a form for turning in one's neighbor [English translation here]. The kingdom uses internet filtering technology to stop residents from even viewing provocative clothing. Non-compliance means death.
So what's the style-conscious Saudi woman to do? Hasima Islamic Swimwear was the answer.
posted by kanewai at 4:11 PM PST - 38 comments

Esquivalience-n. the willful avoidance of one's official responsibilities. Lillian Virginia Mountweazel, a fountain designer turned photographer who was celebrated for a collection of photographs of rural American mailboxes titled "Flags Up!" Phony entries to dictionaries and encyclopedias to catch copiers. By posting this at work I am practicing esquivalience, no?
posted by caddis at 2:47 PM PST - 44 comments

Google Live Search
A Greasemonkey Script that enables you to watch your google results come in live, as you type the search terms. Mesmerizing, time-wasting, and possibly useful.
Greasemonkey and Firefox required.
posted by Edible Energy at 2:09 PM PST - 32 comments

Arimaa is the first game designed specifically to be hard for computers to play, while easy for people. With its billions of combinations and push-me-pull-you gameplay conditional value strategy, it's too much for brute force computing. And yet, it's simple enough for a child to play (or at least to explain). Play it now against people from all over the world (and lackwit computors).
posted by klangklangston at 1:52 PM PST - 103 comments

This Spartan Life , a Halo talk show. A nice example of Machinima, using game engines in unexpected ways. Some, like the folks behind Red vs. Blue or The Strangerhood, make long running series, others recreate movie scenes, and some people just like playing with the environment.
posted by Gamblor at 12:35 PM PST - 10 comments

Remember the mysterious Piano Man? Well, he got better.
posted by LordSludge at 12:35 PM PST - 34 comments

Rankings of world universities as published by the Beijing Jiaotong University. This is the third year this list has been published.
posted by nervousfritz at 11:50 AM PST - 55 comments

? , !, & @ .
posted by ?! at 11:39 AM PST - 46 comments

Porn can make you go blind. Kinda.
posted by gottabefunky at 10:57 AM PST - 40 comments

"Hold Me": a scan of the classic Gaiman/McKean Hellblazer #27 issue.
posted by jenleigh at 10:24 AM PST - 82 comments

Operation Crossroads: Bikini Atoll. Paintings from the site of the Bikini Atoll atomic bomb tests. Some personal favorites. (via)
posted by BackwardsCity at 8:45 AM PST - 12 comments

Power Cut Shuts Down Iraq Oil Exports ASRA, Iraq (AP) -- Iraq's oil exports were shut down Monday by a power cut that darkened parts of central and southern Iraq, including the country's only functioning oil export terminals, Iraqi and foreign oil officials said.
posted by celerystick at 8:26 AM PST - 21 comments

Saul Bass may not be a name familiar to the casual movie fan, but in his forty year career he created some of the most striking credit sequences around. From comedy to creepy he left his mark on any movie he was involved with. Not Coming breaks down twenty-four of his most famous works.
posted by beowulf573 at 8:13 AM PST - 16 comments

Transmitters? We don't need no stinkin' transmitters! Employees of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporatation, locked out since early last week, are using the Internet to communicate with their listener/viewer base. First, there were blogs from both sides. And now the locked out employees are producing podcasts (RSS link) from the picket lines.
posted by sanitycheck at 3:17 AM PST - 60 comments

Welcome to the subculture of the Balisong.

With it's origins in 1700's France and later moving to the Philippines, this knife has now become very popular with a thriving community of seriously bent, obsessive, not to mention masochistic, collectors and tricksters.

Video evidence of their mad crazy knife flipping skills can be found here, here and (do NOT miss this one) here. (I find this girls knife skills utterly hawt, is that wrong?)

And if you insist on learning yourself, buy a bushel of band-aids and start here.
posted by Parannoyed at 3:02 AM PST - 36 comments

Constant Lambert, born 100 years ago this week, was briefly the biggest star in British music in the 1930s, famous for the jazz-tinged choral piece, The Rio Grande. The BBC are playing a retrospective of his music, together with pieces by his contemporary Alan Rawsthorne, every day this week at 11:00 GMT, repeated at midnight a week later, as part of their Composer of the week slot (buttons on this page for the live stream, plus the previous five programmes). Unfortunately they aren't playing the whole of his masterpiece, the Concerto for Piano and Nine Players, dedicated to his late friend Peter Warlock, which can be read as a elegy for the Jazz Age itself.
A heavy drinker, Constant died in 1951; his son Kit Lambert, who managed The Who during their rise to fame, also died young after drug troubles. Andrew Motion wrote a biography of three generations of the Lambert family, and reflects on Constant here.
posted by gdav at 2:51 AM PST - 2 comments

Krick of Evol Intent offers a firsthand account of the events that took place at a party that he was scheduled to play August 20th in Utah. The event was fully licensed, fully legal, and non-violent. Halfway through the party, authorities arrived in full riot gear and ended the event like a full-scale riot (tear gas, attack dogs, and assault rifles). One attendee managed to escape with actual video footage of the shutdown. Another DJ at the event who goes by Syne offers her own account of the same event, and the Utah Raves forum is lit up like a switchboard. Lawsuits are pending...
posted by deusdiabolus at 1:29 AM PST - 92 comments

August 21

Nihonjinron in images - despite being the second-largest entity in a global economy, Japan's cultural xenophobia has been said to contribute much to nihonjinron, what some describe as a near-fascist-like obsession of a small group of its citizens in restoring Japan to a monocultural, miltaristic, pre-war empire, despite one Japanese academic's contrary view of history.
posted by Rothko at 11:33 PM PST - 40 comments

"Kinky Friedman's candidacy is bound to be something; what that something is is still up for debate." The New Yorker checks in on Kinky's gubernatorial campaign (previously discussed here and here).
My platform is to remember that when they went out searching for Sam Houston to try to persuade him to be the governor--and he was the greatest governor this state has ever had--rumor has it that they found him drunk sleeping under a bridge with the Indians.
[more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 10:43 PM PST - 18 comments

A double whammy for the U.S. economy this winter: Bankers have announced credit card minimum payments will double starting in early 2006 as a 10-year payback system is adopted. Meanwhile in October comes the controversial bankruptcy reform. All this on a blanket of spiralling gas prices. That Unahome may be the wave of the future for a lot of Americans.
posted by rolypolyman at 10:22 PM PST - 37 comments

I Find Your Lack of Faith Disturbing is the new blog by screenwriter Josh Friedman. Not much there yet but what is is fun, especially parts one and two of his adventures with arbitration on War of the Worlds. (Of note: Friedman is the writer who adapted James Ellroy's The Black Dahlia for David Fincher Brian De Palma.) {via The Screenwriting Life}
posted by dobbs at 10:14 PM PST - 9 comments

Robert Moog has passed away after battling a brain tumor for several months. There aren't any news stories up yet, but simply key his name into Google and it's plain to see his influence on every aspect of music. The family has a caringbridge page filled with tributes and several journal entries.
posted by teletype1 at 8:50 PM PST - 77 comments

Kodo's Earth Celebration has come to an end. Kodo is a world famous drumming group that specializes in traditional taiko drumming. This year's guest to the three day festival, celebrating music, art, and culture, was Galacia born, Spanish bag-pipe player Carlos Nuñez. The festival is held in Ogi town on Sado Island, Japan.
posted by snwod at 8:03 PM PST - 5 comments

The meth myth? New blog takes critical look at media coverage of meth; other skeptical observers also ask whether meth babies and meth mouth really exist.
posted by footnote at 7:44 PM PST - 102 comments

Singing Insects of North America Most of us have heard these little fellas performing their serenades of a summer evening. Some of their songs have a sort of lilting syncopation, others sound more like heavy metal of the industrial revolution variety. (.wav files) Check out the greatest hits list. Some are pretty. Some are ugly. Some are pretty ugly Some are bona fide coneheads. Anyway, there are lots of them to check out! (Related Mefi links here and here.)
posted by trip and a half at 7:18 PM PST - 9 comments

Linux®
posted by riffola at 5:17 PM PST - 27 comments

China to invade USA within the decade, using biological weapons to kill "hundreds of millions". On the other hand, China is a wonderful land which has given an immensely rich culture to the global community.
posted by Mephistopheles at 3:12 PM PST - 96 comments

Listen to Railroad Radio! Frequencies scanned are listed, as well as background information on the areas. Shoutcast streams for your favorite player. Hobos optional.
posted by angry modem at 12:20 PM PST - 15 comments

The Peleliu Project. The tiny Micronesian island of Peleliu was the site of one of the bloodiest battles of World War II. The U.S. invasion of the Japanese occupied island began in September of 1944, and was expected to last only a matter of days. Casualties on this 5 square mile island reached 20,000 by the end of the two-month struggle. U.S. soldiers were forced to pour aviation fuel into caves and ignite them in order to end the standoff of those who refused to surrender. One determined group of 34 Japanese soldiers remained in hiding until they were discovered in April of 1947.
Pharmacist Mate 3rd Class Russell Fee returned from Peleliu with a fierce, uncompromising vision of America which would have a profound impact on the life and work of his son. Fifty-three years later, armed with his father's snapshots and diary which he had just uncovered, James Fee went to Peleliu to see with his own eyes the place where his father's vision had taken shape. The result of his five year quest is The Peleliu Project. more inside
posted by matteo at 12:02 PM PST - 13 comments

Oregon man gets jailtime for website. There's a lot you can do on the internet, but "cheating" the state out of tax revenue is a crime. "Washington County Circuit Judge Michael McElligott found Eric Ivan Guthrie not guilty of racketeering and computer crime for selling cigarettes through the now-defunct Inexpensivesmokes.com Web site. However, McElligott found Guthrie guilty of doing business as a cigarette distributor without a license, two counts of unlawful distribution of cigarettes for not affixing the packs with Oregon revenue stamps and five counts of failing to comply with tobacco sale requirements for not verifying that buyers were at least 18 years old. Oregon Department of Revenue has the names and sales receipts for 7,500 people who bought cigarettes online without paying the state tax of $1.18 a pack. A small percentage have been sent bills, and officials are determining how many others will be asked to pay the state". This seems wrong.
posted by Mack Twain at 10:34 AM PST - 37 comments

Pandas! "You are watching live images of Mei Xiang, a giant panda, and her newborn cub at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. The cub was born at 3:41 a.m. on Saturday, July 9."

Details here. Warning: make sure you have a high tolerance for cuteness.
posted by sdrawkcab at 9:35 AM PST - 26 comments

The Great Queers of History - I am sometimes asked, ‘But does it really matter that some historical figure, for example Tchaikovsky, was gay? ... But I like to pose some questions of my own in response: ‘If it doesn't really matter, why has society taken such great pains to conceal Tchaikovsky’s sexuality, maybe even murder him for it? from Lists of famous homosexuals ( ... and a prior related post by anastasiav, Homosexuality in 18th Century England)
posted by madamjujujive at 4:11 AM PST - 87 comments

Iraq 2007: A geopolitical fantasy of what might have been
posted by pandaharma at 4:02 AM PST - 28 comments

August 20

Terrifying noggins created over a 15 year period by Joseph Seigenthaler.
posted by jonson at 11:02 PM PST - 14 comments

It's over. For the U.S. to win the Iraq war requires three things: defeating the Iraqi resistance; establishing a stable government in Iraq that is friendly to the U.S.; maintaining the support of the American people while the first two are being done. None of these three seem any longer possible... As a result, the Bush regime is in an impossible position. It would like to withdraw in a dignified manner, asserting some semblance of victory. But, if it tries to do this, it will face ferocious anger and deception on the part of the war party at home. And if it does not, it will face ferocious anger on the part of the withdrawal party. It will end up satisfying neither, lose face precipitously, and be remembered in ignominy.  The U.S. Has Lost the Iraq War... See also, Iraq at the Gates of Hell And yet, Does the U.S. plan to be in Iraq forever? Via James Wolcott, among others.
posted by y2karl at 10:30 PM PST - 74 comments


Museum of Modern Robocop Art. Some guy made lots of amazing Robocop pictures using the limited palette offered by Artpad. Ignore the site, xoxohth, which is a college and law school discussion board filled with vulgarity, but revel in the many ways Robocop is conceptualized.
posted by Falconetti at 5:55 PM PST - 24 comments

Timeline. I found this strangely riveting even though it is just a simple clock [flash].
posted by srboisvert at 5:46 PM PST - 37 comments

Spin A short film about an intercessor DJ (via bryan. Hi, bryan!)
posted by boo_radley at 12:39 PM PST - 28 comments

You Wouldn't Want To Be ... an Eqyptian Mummy, a Slave in Ancient Greece, or even an Aztec Sacrifice ... would you? The "You Wouldn't Want To" series of children's educational books is written by various experts and viscerally illustrated by David Antram. Conveniently enough, "You Wouldn't" contributor and former Cambridge professor Fiona Macdonald has also written a series of "How To Be" books. (via JessicaHarbour)
posted by grabbingsand at 11:01 AM PST - 28 comments

Squeezing more juice out of the hard drive's music library Now that the hard drive has been filled,and my music has been rated/re-rated, and categorized/re-categorized, it's time to move on, so I went looking for online services that work with the music library . So far, I have found music sharing/new music discovery sites -last.fm , Goombah, and MusicStrands. Moodlogic automates playlists based on different song features - tempo, year, etc. What else is out there? How about song lyrics, biographies, discography, upcoming shows, upcoming new releases, similar artists, whenever an artist/song is playing? What else do you do with your music hard drive?
posted by Voyageman at 9:49 AM PST - 34 comments

Bicycle Bricolage Bicycles built from found items.
posted by mecran01 at 9:14 AM PST - 20 comments

The Next Generation Rabbit Pearl Wireless Vibrator is just one of a range of products in Amazon's sex shop.
posted by bobbyelliott at 9:07 AM PST - 47 comments

Project Euler is a running contest of programming challenges to hone your algorithm skills. "Each problem is designed according to a 'one-minute rule', which means that although it may take several hours to design a successful algorithm with more difficult problems, an efficient implementation will allow a solution to be obtained on a modestly powered computer in less than one minute."
posted by Wolfdog at 6:11 AM PST - 11 comments

A Dog for All Seasons. A wonderful Flash game. From Orisinal. Via Edge.
posted by nthdegx at 3:45 AM PST - 18 comments

Sucked in! MRI scanners are hungry for any metal objects in the nearby vicinity, with hilarious and sometimes tragic results. The roughly 10,000 scanners in the United States are found not just in hospitals, but in storefront clinics and even mounted on trucks, making rounds of small hospitals or parking at malls to do scans for a fee.
posted by asok at 3:42 AM PST - 50 comments

The Long Goodbye - A final farewell to a man regarded by many to be a legend, Hunter S. Thompson, who, according to his final wishes, will today have his ashes shot from a cannon.
posted by Acey at 1:40 AM PST - 24 comments

The Many Deaths of Norman Spittal. Hilarious, in a morbid sort of way. Also, chortle over these gags.
posted by Chasuk at 12:15 AM PST - 10 comments

August 19

Late night Friday flash fun for those of us who don't do well with the hard stuff: Toss a salad with Cookie Monster!

Here's all the rest of them. Enjoy!
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 11:02 PM PST - 9 comments

Masters of Deception "There are a number of incredible artistic works featured in Masters of Deception, which require movement to appreciate their full impact. Additionally, I had in my possession various interviews with some of the book's featured artists that I wanted to share with my readership. Unfortunately, the publisher was unwilling to produce a CD to accompany the book. I have created this web site, therefore, to augment and enhance the reader's experience by presenting those works and interviews that I could not present in book form." Al Seckel. enjoy.
posted by hortense at 10:43 PM PST - 3 comments

Photographing flying insects. Most of the pages are devoted to a very detailed tutorial, but pages 2, 4, 9 & 10 show the results of the various setups. Some spectacular hi-speed (bee wings frozen in mid buzz) stuff in here.
posted by jonson at 8:26 PM PST - 31 comments

Jack Cafferty pulls a Jon Stewart --Cafferty, CNN's resident curmudgeon, goes off live on the coverage of the BTK killer. (video here at Crooks and Liars) ... This is a ghoulish exercise on the part of the news media and if ratings are the reason, then I’ll say it again, we ought to be ashamed of ourselves. There was no reason to give this guy a platform to talk to everybody in the country ... With cameras in courtrooms almost everywhere nowadays, what is the media's responsibility?
posted by amberglow at 6:54 PM PST - 82 comments

A break in the strange case of Judge Joseph Crater. In 1930, Judge Crater, later dubbed "The Missingest Man In New York", stepped into a cab and was never seen again. He left behind a mourning wife and one of New York's most enduring mysteries. For 75 years, his disappearance has been the butt of many dumb jokes and also has been the subject of the occasional book.
posted by Joey Michaels at 5:46 PM PST - 5 comments

No mere slap on the wrist for Merck. Jury awards grieving widow $253.4 Mil in Vioxx suit. The first of thousands of cases like it. (washpost)
posted by punkbitch at 5:33 PM PST - 52 comments

Wanna buy some? I guess it's okay, If it's for a good cause....
posted by longsleeves at 5:09 PM PST - 14 comments

Sushifinder helps you find sushi restaurants in selected US cities. The site has editorial reviews, as well as user reviews and ratings. One helpful feature allows you to type in a street corner (e.g. 3rd and Main) and it will find the sushi joints nearest to that location.
posted by pitchblende at 4:52 PM PST - 17 comments

The Antichrist Checklist : The most recent entry in Slacktivist's extremely insightful and entertaining series on mocking and deconstructing the Left Behind books. Being written from the perspective of a non-fundie Christian just makes it even more powerful. Slacky reveals how manufactured the cooked-up, hacked-together "prophecy," that fuels the series is. If you believe all that nonsense, and can make it through this series with your wacky premillennial dispensationalist beliefs intact, then I'm sorry but there is no hope for you.

Highlights of this week's installment, the best I've seen in a while: the antichrist, the paucity of the biblical evidence for him/it, and this sentence: "The composite sketch derived from all these descriptions yields a portrait that looks a little like Nebuchadnezzar, a little like Antiochus Epiphanes, a little like Nero or Diocletian, and a little like Victor von Doom."
posted by JHarris at 4:25 PM PST - 24 comments

Top 10 Things I Like in My Apartment by Jaime Stewart of Xiu Xiu.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 2:50 PM PST - 34 comments

A new food blog! Slashfood. Looks like a good one. They seem to be covering pretty much everything. Instant bookmark!
posted by braun_richard at 1:41 PM PST - 25 comments

Friday flash fun! Try Poom! You move a constantly changing floor around in a virtual 3-D space so that a ball will bounce on it. Curiously entertaining...

There goes the rest of my day. via zannah
posted by jasper411 at 1:25 PM PST - 27 comments

"Like any red-blooded, masculine man of the male gender, I love PVC weaponry. You should too. If the concept of heading down to Home Depot and transforming $100 worth of random pipe bits into a killing machine doesn’t appeal to you, you’re a frikkin' pansy. For those of you who laugh at hypersonic shards of plastic puncturing your spleen, here’s a look at how I’ve kept myself busy for the past week: building a PVC-pipe flamethrower."
posted by fandango_matt at 12:25 PM PST - 64 comments

"Since I was a little boy I have always dreamed that one day man would journey to the moon and beyond. I now try to create images that show the possibilities of space flight with the technologies that are currently available today or what could be in the near future. In doing so, I try to depict what a manned space mission might actually look like to one of the 9 planets in our solar system." [Not Flash, but fun for Friday anyway.]
posted by OmieWise at 11:11 AM PST - 14 comments


Explosion & Fire in Downtown San Francisco Just happened. Could be a gas line - at this point, no one knows.
posted by echolalia67 at 10:42 AM PST - 106 comments

Ambigrams are words or phrases that can be read in more than one way or from more than a single vantage point, most commonly right-side-up and upside-down. Ambigram.Matic is the world's first and only online Ambigram Generator! Flip any word, different words of the same length, or even an entire (symmetrically spaced) sentence on its head, and read it both ways!
posted by mr.dan at 10:01 AM PST - 19 comments

Nanotube sheets! "The ribbons are transparent, flexible, and conduct electricity. Weight for weight, they are stronger than steel sheets, yet a square kilometre of the material would weigh only 30 kilograms. 'This is basically a new material.'" Applications could include flexible TV screens, light panels and that digital paper they keep telling us is coming soon.
posted by me3dia at 9:37 AM PST - 31 comments

Holography For The Masses! A magical journey of making holograms with a $7.99 laser pointer and higher-power laser diodes.
posted by mr.curmudgeon at 9:07 AM PST - 5 comments

Hybrid supercar. The West Philadelphia High School Electric Vehicle Team has built a 300 hp hybrid car which gets 50 mpg on bio-diesel, accelerates from 0 to 60 in less than 4 seconds and looks sweet. That is a pretty nice high school project.
posted by caddis at 8:43 AM PST - 34 comments

Remember Kelo? After winning a landmark eminent domain ruling from the Supreme Court, the New London Development Corporation now wants to pay residents based on value they held in 2000, rather then 2005, which would leave them unable to buy equivalent new home in today's real estate bubble.

Then also want to charge back rent. In some cases up to $300 thousand. Susette Kelo herself now owes $56k.
posted by delmoi at 8:34 AM PST - 66 comments

45,000 pounds + four 130 foot rotors + up to 200 mph Jet Stream winds = Energy Problem Solved
Like the monster mother of all kites, a company called Sky Windpower (which sports an excellent website about high altitude wind power) has been founded by an Australian engineer with three others to attempt to harness the near limitless windpower of the jet stream with a machine they call an FEG (Flying Electric Generator).
They're currently seeking $4 million to build a 200 kilowatt prototype but still need to get FAA clearance to fly it. The production models would generate 20 megawatts each and would be flown in farms of up to 600 turbines to generate enough power to light up two cities the size of Chicago. Power and control of the huge machines would be handled by a three inch thick tether connected to a winch on a ground station.
Man, I love Popular Science!
posted by fenriq at 8:19 AM PST - 35 comments

What if there were an established international legal precedent for addressing the terrorism problem? Maybe there is. And maybe it involves a plank. Or an eyepatch. Or, like, a hook instead of a hand. [via aldaily]
posted by willpie at 8:08 AM PST - 19 comments

Randy "Biscuit" Turner, singer for the legendary punk-funk/skate-punk band Big Boys died yesterday.
posted by bluno at 8:02 AM PST - 12 comments

Women Photographers.
posted by sgt.serenity at 7:58 AM PST - 9 comments

The St. Patrick's Four haven't received the media attention of Cindy Sheehan. Are small pockets of anti-war protests on the rise?
posted by bluesky43 at 7:38 AM PST - 18 comments

Remember the Twixters? Now meet the Yeppies: Young, Experimenting Perfection Seekers1,2,3. "Another survey, another invented tag for a group of young people. This survey was for eBay, carried out by Kate Fox, a social anthropologist at the Social Issues Research Centre. It argues that young people are now shopping around and experimenting to find, as she puts it, 'the perfect job, the ideal relationship and the most fulfilling lifestyle.'" - as noted by World Wide Words. [See also: this Venn diagram.] Will researchers ever tire of all this name-calling, though? If they really want to RTFM about this particular generation, they should just watch Wonderfalls.
posted by Lush at 6:42 AM PST - 18 comments

"The neutron bomb has to be the most moral weapon ever invented." -- Sam Cohen, inventor of the neutron bomb. [an article by Charles Platt on boingboing.net]
posted by iffley at 6:24 AM PST - 53 comments

The New England Journal of Medicine published several articles this week on remaining, statistically significant gender and racial disparities in the quantity and quality of various medical procedures and care management resources made available to black and white Americans. These disparities may possibly help our understanding of the cause of some of the unexplained differences in mortality rates between populations. "Although the reasons for these differences are unknown, their persistence emphasizes the need for a continued search for explanations so that inequities in clinical care may be eliminated..." (registration req'd)
posted by Rothko at 4:52 AM PST - 23 comments

The Right Honourable Dr Marjorie "Mo" Mowlam whose no-nonsense negotiating as Labour Secretary of State for Northern Ireland helped forge the province's landmark peace accord has died at 55 after a long battle with cancer. In reaching agreement in the Northern Ireland she got the IRA to restore their cease-fire - and defended the ceasefire when it seemed all but broken - she stood up to Ulster Unionists but paid an extraordinary visit to Northern Ireland's notorious Maze prison to meet with Loyalist and Republican inmates and shepherded the multi-party talks to a successful conclusion. Remarkably, she even devolved her own role as Secretary of State. Billy Joel was right: only the good die young.
posted by three blind mice at 4:16 AM PST - 27 comments

August 18

Terence Trent D'Arby If you're of a certain age, you might remember a brief period in the late eighties when this two-hit wonder was all over the radio; unavoidable. Now, he's...a fish.
posted by bunglin jones at 10:11 PM PST - 60 comments

Public Radio Exchange: Part of the future of Public Radio? I heard part of this great interview with husband and wife authors Michael Chabon & Ayelet Waldman on NPR today and had to find the transcript, or preferably the audio of it. Thank you PRX!
posted by FlamingBore at 10:07 PM PST - 4 comments

"This is a war story!" (warning: direct ifilm video link)
Don't play VD roulette! Watch Disney's 1973 educational film "VD Attack Plan" and fight those damned G & S soldiers! Lady killers? Really can kill ladies!
Features whimsical cartoons and really icky photos.

posted by miss lynnster at 9:33 PM PST - 7 comments

Overshadowed - images by Keith Kin Yan
posted by Gyan at 9:17 PM PST - 13 comments

Top 10 most ridiculous black metal pics of all time - 2005 edition. This is a follow-up to the original 2004 list. NSFW (via Buzz)
posted by madamjujujive at 8:28 PM PST - 79 comments

This is hilarious (NSWF) and flash required. And ode to Camilla the Queen by the tune of Queen. Again, straight from MoFi but I thought I'd share because it made me laugh out loud for the first time for days.
posted by keijo at 8:00 PM PST - 13 comments

Corporate name calling "I had no bad words at all. I guess the earliest letter is dated in May and from then on up until now my name has been listed as Jeffery Scrotum Bag Barnes and I have no idea why."
posted by saketini99 at 7:16 PM PST - 28 comments

Aichi Expo 2005 Review. Yuki of Kissui.net travels to the 2005 World Expo in Aichi, Japan and posts a wonderful review with great photos and commentary.
posted by gen at 4:31 PM PST - 9 comments

It's the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine... For as much as MeFites object to apocalyptic thinking, there sure is a lot of it We've had apocalyptic literature since the Second Temple period, and it heavily influenced the origins of both Christianity and Islam. It serves a strong psychological function for persecuted minorities. And more than a few predictions that have failed miserably, often based on scriptural exegesis. What does that say about modern predictions about global warming or peak oil? Do the failed predictions of Nostradamus mean that Joseph Tainter was wrong?
posted by jefgodesky at 2:43 PM PST - 57 comments

Perhaps you'll remember one of the most popular bits of actual home robotics from the distant past, the venerated Heathkit Hero -- as seen on the teevee show Whiz Kids and other geek-facing programming. As I kid I thought they looked RAD and would nearly killed for one. Those days of everyman robo-lovin' I thought were well past, their niche filled with Aibo and other toy-based robots. Until today, however. The White Bot Robotics 914 rekindles dreams of a telerobotic presence lovingly slaved to robust hardware. Sadly, reports put the pricetag enticingly out of reach at $10K and the thing by default runs on XP, but in theory it's expandible. Also, the same report cites an $1,200 "less featured" model that "may" be forthcoming. Via
posted by Ogre Lawless at 2:26 PM PST - 5 comments

Electronic rights in the UK A foundation is being set up in Britain to defend our citizens in digital information matters, in a similar way to the US model. This is scary stuff -- the government is trying to push through a data retention proposal which would make all ISPs and telecos retain communications traffic data for up to three years and there are also moves afoot to criminalise copyright infringement -- approaches which are also gaining support in the EU. So thank goodness people are signing the pledge to support the new British EFF.
posted by feelinglistless at 1:53 PM PST - 15 comments

Rent a minority A swedish library will begin renting out minority groups. [link via Bookslut]
posted by drezdn at 1:05 PM PST - 37 comments

Evil Metafilter doppelganger has been birthed unto the internet.
posted by jackofsaxons at 12:40 PM PST - 127 comments

Akamai's Net Usage Index tracks the most-read articles on its customers' news sites, rates the current level of news consumption and breaks the traffic down by geography. More info here.
posted by nyterrant at 12:27 PM PST - 6 comments

Truman Capote's Blood Work Two soon-to-be released films on Truman Capote's life, Capote and Have You Heard? begin as the novelist drops into rural Kansas to begin work on what became "In Cold Blood". More inside.
posted by matteo at 12:18 PM PST - 11 comments

The Sub Pop Singles Club began in 1988 with the release of Nirvana's Love Buzz single, and continued to offer subscribers new singles from popular and up-and-coming grunge bands for five years. In 1998 the label briefly resurrected the club, ultimately ending it three years ago. Featured bands ranged from the popular to the obscure. Earlier this year, the complete collection of singles was put for sale on ebay, cementing its status as a collector's item and making a generation of music geeks feel old.
posted by kyleg at 10:43 AM PST - 28 comments

Let Them Sing It For You. Alternatively, you can Låt dam sjunga det åt dig. Also, a tree with birds in it, and Sound Carpets. Potentially lots more sound fun at the Swedish Radio page, although the exact quantity of fun you'll have depends on your ability to speak Swedish.
posted by nylon at 10:06 AM PST - 9 comments

The Ministry of Reshelving
This week, we launched the Ministry of Reshelving project. My partners in crime as founding members of the ministry: George, Kiyash, and Monica. This weekend we relocated 19 copies of George Orwell's 1984 in four different bookstores in Palo Alto, San Francisco, and Berkeley. It was high stealth adventure. You are invited to join our efforts.
Sounds like mischievous fun. Which books would you reshelve?
posted by nofundy at 9:53 AM PST - 118 comments

"Almost half the children committed one or more of these mistakes. They attempted with apparent seriousness to perform the same actions with the miniature items that they had with the large ones. Some sat down on the little chair: they walked up to it, turned around, bent their knees and lowered themselves onto it. Some simply perched on top, others sat down so hard that the chair skittered out from under them. Some children sat on the miniature slide and tried to ride down it, usually falling off in the process; others attempted to climb the steps, causing the slide to tip over. (With the chair and slide made of sturdy plastic and only about five inches tall, the toddlers faced no danger of hurting themselves.)"
posted by Tlogmer at 9:23 AM PST - 34 comments

Mike Davidson is giving away an iPod to the respondent that posts the best site that he's never seen. Excellent stuff to be found in the responses so far, with New York Conversations (previously mentioned here in the blue) the one that I'm currently checking out. Legal Notice: I'm not Mike Davidson and have never met nor communicated with him. I'm also not employed by Apple, but I do love their products.
posted by jperkins at 8:34 AM PST - 16 comments

Art Urinals The pink orchid reminds me of the animation from The Wall.
posted by jonson at 8:34 AM PST - 25 comments

An Image Bank For Everyday Revolutionary Life - The Siqueiros Photographic Archive is a collection of photographic images collected by Mexican mural artist David Áfaro Siqueiros..."The archive traces Siqueiros's visual research prior to painting on canvas or on the wall, and also documents his use of photography during the production of the works themselves." [via]
posted by tpl1212 at 8:31 AM PST - 3 comments

Bluetooth Star Trek Barbie. She also has the bonus distinction of also being USB-enabled. [via]
posted by grateful at 7:44 AM PST - 13 comments

Scotland Yard commissioner Sir Ian Blair attempted to stop an independent external investigation into the shooting of Brazilian Jean Charles de Menezes, who was mistaken for a suicide bomber and dispatched with seven bullets to the head soon after an official "shoot-to-kill" policy was enacted. CCTV footage that was once available and would help explain this circumstances around this killing was subsequently lost by authorities upon public outcries for this independent investigation.
posted by Rothko at 3:22 AM PST - 135 comments

August 17

"In slavery times the negroes were sold to the white people." In their simple and plain language, elementary school students describe the horrors of slavery as related by their grandparents. The Greensboro Historical Museum has an online exhibit of the interviews. Another quote: "He said that the white men would whip them and sometimes hung men and women when they were mad with them or if the slaves tried to run away." The handwriting is kind of hard to read on some of these, but worth it.
posted by marxchivist at 8:46 PM PST - 26 comments

Joe Ranft, co-writer of Toy Story, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, and many other animated films, and head of story at Pixar Animation Studios, died yesterday at age 45 when the car he was riding failed to negotiate an oceanside road in Mendocino County, California.
posted by cerebus19 at 8:15 PM PST - 36 comments

"What's most shocking about Grand Theft Auto isn't embedded sex scenes. It's the financial chicanery of the game's maker." Fortune's Bethany McLean - one of the few journalists to question Enron's stock price in early 2001 - has just taken a good look at Take Two Interactive, and she doesn't like what she sees. Four CEOs since 2002, execs dumping stock in recent months, fraudulent "parking transactions" that dramatically overstated earnings...and yet its stock price has remained bouyant. "How, in an era when investors are supposedly obsessed with corporate governance, are this firm's troubles so easily overlooked?"
posted by mediareport at 8:00 PM PST - 12 comments

real genius (not to be confused with reel genius) — or something a little like it — can be found in dusty corners of the web :: not all are evil :: one has a lego portfolio :: this homebrew pipe organ is amazing (this guy also builds marble machines and built a digital camera from a flatbed scanner) :: some teach the rudiments of wisdom :: i like the micronomicon :: i'm sure there are thousands of other shards of genius out there waiting to be discovered :: have a baby genius in your home? try the alphabet for geniuses! (just be careful...)
posted by jdroth at 7:57 PM PST - 12 comments

In case the Downing Street Papers weren't enough: US State Dept. documents from the National Security Archive, obtained thru a Freedom of Information Act: State Department experts warned CENTCOM before Iraq war about lack of plans for post-war Iraq security, Planning for post-Saddam regime change began as early as October 2001, and ...They provide detail on each of the working groups and give the starting date for planning as October 2001. Entire sections of a Powerpoint presentation the State Department prepared on November 1, 2002 -- including those covering "What We Have Learned So Far" and "Implications for the Real Future of Iraq" -- have been censored as still-classified information. ... (PDFS)
posted by amberglow at 7:06 PM PST - 41 comments

Mr. Blonde's "Interrogation" (direct link to video) recreated with balloons.
via
posted by fenriq at 5:18 PM PST - 21 comments

Death By Caffeine I just learned that it would take 155.11 cans of Mountain Dew to kill me, according to this odd little service.
posted by jragon at 5:11 PM PST - 44 comments

Anybody else running out of space on their browser quick links bar? I just found this cool bookmarks springboard page, and it lets me put a picture of my pet giraffe on it!
posted by drewlondon at 4:35 PM PST - 29 comments

A military intelligence operation - codenamed Able Danger -- repeatedly contacted the FBI in 2000 to warn about the existence of an American-based terrorist cell that included Mohamed Atta, the ringleader of the Sept. 11 attacks, according to a veteran Army intelligence officer who said he had now decided to risk his career by discussing the information publicly.

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer came out publicly yesterday saying that military lawyers blocked the team from sharing any of its information with the FBI. Shaffer told CNN today that information he tried to provide to the commission investigating the September 11, 2001, attacks never made it to the panel's members. Folks along the entire political spectrum - from right to left - want to know what's going on.
posted by ericb at 2:36 PM PST - 76 comments

Can you hear the future? Sunncomm can, and it's called copy protection. Sunncomm's Mediamax DRM, which blocks the purchaser from copying any files from the CD, is included on the latest Dave Matthews Band CD, Stand Up (as well as CDs from some other artists). The good news? It includes pre-ripped versions of the songs. The bad news? They're .WMA files. Apparently, Dave Matthews Band decided to help out all those iPod lovers who were getting hosed (perhaps in response to this) by posting instructions on how to bypass Sunncomm's copy protection. Of course, the last time somebody did that, he nearly got sued into oblivion. DMB's probably OK, however, because it seems that business is booming. Of course, that may not last long. [via] and [via]
posted by MrZero at 2:35 PM PST - 48 comments

The Star Diary An imaginary book. One of many imaginary things. Or, is this the Star Diary?
posted by vacapinta at 2:16 PM PST - 8 comments

we may not know where they are - but here's where they've been... An incredible amount of information - current and historical - well indexed and with about a billion options for searching through it. pretty impressive for what is at least unofficially a quasi-federal government site despite protestations to the contrary.
posted by ab3 at 2:14 PM PST - 6 comments

Local governments in Colorado have agreed to deliberately impede traffic on existing highways near a toll road in order to protect the toll roads' investors.Article includes examples of similar public/private "cooperation" in Virginia and California.
posted by Kwantsar at 1:24 PM PST - 30 comments

"Freedom of speech is not what it used to be in America. It has been so abused by some that it is not exercised by others." Margaret Chase Smith was the first woman to serve in both houses of Congress, and the first woman to run for president on a major party ticket. On June 1, 1950, she gave her Declaration of Conscience speech against McCarthyism on the floor of the Senate, and much of it is relevant today.
It is high time that we stopped thinking politically as Republicans and Democrats about elections and started thinking patriotically as Americans about national security based on individual freedom. It is high time that we all stopped being tools and victims of totalitarian techniques--techniques that, if continued here unchecked, will surely end what we have come to cherish as the American way of life.
[more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 12:25 PM PST - 24 comments

Are you HUNGRY or do you just crave the flavor? (my favorite is that Mustard is under the heading Exotic.)
posted by Phantast at 11:48 AM PST - 29 comments

MY DATE WITH DREW - Follow up to this past thread.
Though the first post's linked page has changed since the last discussion. What happened to the web journal behind this movie?
posted by thomcatspike at 11:38 AM PST - 15 comments

The Learning Abscess - Catalog of Classes for August 2005 From the person who brought you IFACINTAH. [Second link NSFW]
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 11:36 AM PST - 4 comments

In Neil Gaiman's "American Gods", the central character spends quite a bit of time in a fictional small town called Lakewood, WI. Lakewood closely resembles Gaiman's hometown of Menomonie, WI. It's all there: The Buck saloon, the manmade lake, even "the klunker". When Shadow goes for a walk in the area, the rivers, streams, and trails he uses are thinly disguised names for similar attractions around Menomonie. Is Lakewood Gaiman's love letter to his new home-town, or just an author following the rule of "write what you know?"
posted by cosmicbandito at 8:43 AM PST - 74 comments

FlashEarth is a Flash app that adds continuous zoom and rotation abilities to Google Maps/MSN VirtualEarth. Created by Paul Neave.
posted by gwint at 8:14 AM PST - 16 comments


Harry Potter and the Recessive Allele is a short letter to Nature, suggesting using the concept of wizarding heritage in the Harry Potter series to explain genetics to children. It's the latest forwarding fad among biologists. The cartoon in this newspaper version of the story sums it up best... The idea isn't new, however, because a quick Google search finds the same theory in a British newspaper article from 2003.
posted by easternblot at 7:33 AM PST - 14 comments

Sheehan Reality Nice video taken at the outset of the Sheehan protest -- makes you feel like you were right there before all the pundits and interpreters. See for yourself.
posted by sparky at 6:26 AM PST - 159 comments

"It is time to implement Islamic law in Bangladesh": 100 to 300 simultaneous explosions took place throughout almost every Bangladeshi district today, with credit taken by Jamatul Mujahideen Bangladesh, an extremist group banned by the government earlier this year.
posted by highsignal at 6:19 AM PST - 53 comments

Popular Science has posted on their website 5 free mp3's by Jonathan Coullter to go along with their "The Future of the Body" special issue. Below are some lyrics to "Better", a song about the romantic perils of body augmentation: "You started out small Some gills and some wings and a few extra thumbs Now you're thirteen feet tall Even when you're asleep your machinery hums And I'm tired of the evenings I spend Making small talk with your new robot friends And their stupid insistence on scanning my iris When they know damn well who I am" It's all pretty funny stuff. And pretty slick to boot. You can download the songs direct from Coulter's site here as well as the lyrics.
posted by saketini99 at 6:01 AM PST - 10 comments

Still going: jazz pianist Oscar Peterson celebrated his 80th birthday on Monday, with a rare treat. The veteran jazz musician is the first living Canadian to be honored with a commemorative postage stamp.
posted by Smart Dalek at 5:58 AM PST - 12 comments


Bush administration opposing .xxx TLD. Back in June, ICANN approved an application for a .xxx TLD extension. The application was a result of research conducted by the ICM Registry and the International Foundation for Online Responsibility to develop a strategy for identifying a TLD string for the responsible online adult-entertainment community that would transcend geographic regions and languages while having high recognition and lasting value for both registrants and Internet users. Based on this research, ICM and IFFOR selected .xxx as the sole string for this application based upon its high ranking in the aforementioned criteria. In testimony to COPA Commission, Sen. Joe Lieberman endorsed the idea of an Internet "redlight district" (pdf) holding Internet sites to the same standard as X-rated movie theatres. Bowing to pressure from the Family Research Council and other "conservative" groups, Michael Gallagher, assistant secretary at the Commerce Department, has asked for a hold to be placed on the contract to run the new top-level domain until the .xxx suffix can receive further scrutiny. The Bush administration has hinted it may unilaterally to block .xxx from being added to the Internet's master database of domains.
posted by three blind mice at 3:10 AM PST - 51 comments

August 16

Bone Wars is an educational game that "simulates the process of creating a scientific hypothesis and testing it against new data" (A good thing to teach kids with people like these guys running around). The game is based on the legendary Cope/Marsh feud: a conflict that caused one Dinosaur to be classified twice and could make for a really cool movie someday.
posted by brundlefly at 11:30 PM PST - 17 comments

Not letting people take in the wrong soft drink. Making a band change its name. 'The new bill will make it illegal to combine words like "games", "medals", "gold", "2012", "sponsor" or "summer" in any form of advertising.' I'm kind of starting to hate the olympics.
posted by Tlogmer at 10:08 PM PST - 49 comments

A Koi on Keith Alexander - Keith Alexander of modern american bodyarts(NSFW) gets a huge back tattoo, and documents it all before and after each biweekly session. Some of it is a bit campy.... but still wow.
posted by sourbrew at 8:14 PM PST - 25 comments

The Canadian Heraldic Authority, established in 1988, issues coats of arms, flags, and badges to citzens and corporate bodies of Canada. Canada is the only Commonwealth nation to have its own heraldic authority. I wasn't sure what 21st-century, global-culture coats of arms would look like, though, until I came across the coat of arms of G. G. Adrienne Clarkson, which I think are the most impressive coat of arms I have ever come across. The existence of the monarchy and its trappings may be mildly controversial, but these are undeniably works of art. [mi]
posted by blacklite at 7:46 PM PST - 20 comments

So you're on a trip to Japan with your mate before the World Cup. Your mate generously offers to wait for your bag at the carousel and tells you take his bag through customs. Next thing you know you are sitting in prison with frostbite possibly for the next 20 years. Your mum sets up a website to help get you out. Your "mate" is later arrested in Belgium for duping someone else, denies everything and is released on bail. Years later he is found dead on a railway line in Gloucester. You're still in jail after your final court hearing. Your 3 year old son doesn't understand where daddy has gone.

Nothing wrong with worldwide drug importation laws. Nothing at all.
posted by DirtyCreature at 6:14 PM PST - 86 comments

Witness the Whiteness as borderline-albino Canadian nerdcore MCs kick it Konami-school [Windows Media/Quicktime; more]
posted by Pretty_Generic at 5:56 PM PST - 13 comments


Psycho Men Slayers The female Quake playing community demonstrates a playful use of names to demarcate a specifically oppositional female identity within the online community. This is true both of the naming of individuals and the naming of clans or communities such as Chiq, Hellchick, Supergirl, Geekgirl, Clan PMS (Psycho Men Slayers), Da Valkyries: The Women of Quake, Clan Crack Whore, Nimble Little Minxes, The Coven, Hell’s Warehouse. (direct .pdf link via Spitting-Image)
posted by Sully at 2:13 PM PST - 31 comments

Racial profiling to end Toronto gun violence? Michael Thompson, a black city councillor, says police should be allowed to "target" young black men at random as part of a crackdown on guns. The mayor, police, and public collectively go, "Whaaaa!?"
posted by Robot Johnny at 2:11 PM PST - 31 comments

Super patriot Charlie Daniels famous for warning hippies that "it's a flag, not no rag" wrote about the Kosovo War back in the day... yeah... it's ironic.
posted by DougieZero1982 at 1:53 PM PST - 45 comments

Disneyland Postcards — "I have been collecting postcards from the park since the mid 80s', but only a few here and there...since then, I have acquired over 800 postcards, dating from the first one ever printed, to the current ones sold today." Includes 50 years of Disneyland postcards, the backs of cards and Then and Now shots of some of the more scenic places.
posted by Katemonkey at 12:46 PM PST - 12 comments

This journal is intended to share my love and appreciation for the hard work farmers and their families do to create such beautiful places and beautiful food. Tana Butler visists small farms near Santa Cruz, CA, sharing her thoughts and photographs [ farms | farmers | markets | food ].
posted by 김치 at 12:17 PM PST - 21 comments


The legendary John Loder, owner of the fiercely independent Southern Records and Southern Studios, has died. In addition to championing many of the past couple of decade's best independent bands (Shellac, The Jesus Lizard, Jesus and Mary Chain, Fugazi, Minor Threat, Crass), he was a brilliant recording engineer and mastering specialist, responsible for overseeing some underground classics (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6). Mourners are requested to wear T-shirts and jeans. Rest in peace, John. You'll be missed.
posted by nylon at 11:37 AM PST - 21 comments

Get ready for 'weathertainment.' Basic cable standby The Weather Channel is changing its lineup, adding among other things, a morning show and "The Weather Channel Top Ten." Too fluff for your tastes? Check out Weather USA and Rising Slowly for your meteorological needs.
posted by Hot Like Your 12V Wire at 11:37 AM PST - 18 comments

The Home Galaxy. What does the galaxy in which we live look like? via Cheryl's Mewsings
posted by thatwhichfalls at 11:01 AM PST - 17 comments

Vassar Clements, dead at 77.
posted by cedar at 10:43 AM PST - 25 comments

Crocodile Immune System Kills HIV
Because crocodiles fight amonst themselves and get seriously wounded from time to time they developed incredibly strong immune systems and natural antibiotics. So strong that they, well, let's hear from one of the scientists.... "The crocodile has an immune system which attaches to bacteria and tears it apart and it explodes. It's like putting a gun to the head of the bacteria and pulling the trigger," said Australian scientist Adam Britton.
Sounds like good news to me.
posted by fenriq at 10:12 AM PST - 45 comments

Upar Di Gur Gur Thinking about August Fifteenth, of course, leads us to thinking about the rest of the month. Coincidentally, the one man who arguably gave partition it's most enduring image was also as sure a victim of it as anyone else. And I'm sure he would have a very definate reaction to this. (A more exhaustive and bilingual edition here.)
posted by goodglovin77 at 10:08 AM PST - 8 comments

“To speak in a flat voice / Is all that I can do. / . . . I speak of flat defeat / In a flat voice.”
James Wright's letters chronicle many of the major innovations in American poetry in the middle of the twentieth century. They also provide a compelling personal narrative of his life. Here, the American Poetry Review publishes a selection taken from the new volume "A Wild Perfection: The Selected Letters of James Wright". More inside.
posted by matteo at 9:59 AM PST - 8 comments

President Bush defends democratic values and upholds our majoritarian principles by choosing not to exercise the veto power.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 9:24 AM PST - 25 comments

"Tell me, where do all these uncontrollable blacks come from?"
In 2004, neo-Nazis killed 44 people across Russia -- more than double the previous year. A grim storm gathering.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 8:42 AM PST - 25 comments

Francis Fukuyama: The acceptable face of the neo-cons?
"Francis Fukuyama famously announced that we had reached the end of history....For a man whose reputation was made not on extolling the virtues of Western liberal democracy but on proclaiming its complete triumph, now and forever, a degree of equivocation appears to have crept into Fukuyama's commentary. Not, though, that he ever believed the end of history meant nothing would happen. It merely meant that nothing quite as momentous would happen anew, and if history were to begin again, it could only be a repeat."
posted by jenleigh at 8:34 AM PST - 82 comments

La Mascotte: At a time when some of their members are under attack mascots gather today in Philadelphia to open their own Hall of Fame. Not in attendance: Tommy Lasorda, abandoned mascot Youppi, curling mascot Brier Bear, ex-Olympic mascot Izzy and others who couldn't get out of mascot school.
posted by ?! at 7:22 AM PST - 18 comments

Airliner crashes in western Venezuela — A passenger plane crashed in remote western Venezuela with 152 passengers aboard early Tuesday, an aviation official said. A top government official said it was unlikely anyone survived.
posted by Rothko at 6:09 AM PST - 40 comments

Not My Type - An office and its occupants, made entirely of typographic characters, create a theatre of emotion. View the separate animations (Flash) 1, 2, 3 and 4. Also, visit an article on the work's concept development and storyboarding process. And there's more via Google.
posted by sjvilla79 at 5:45 AM PST - 11 comments

Renaissance Festival Books. The British Library has digitized 253 books about European festivals and ceremonies that occurred between 1475 and 1700. "From marriages, coronations and births to official visits and saints’ days, celebrations staged by the royal courts of Europe were occasions to be remembered. Festival books could be compared to souvenir programmes, or magazine accounts, documenting through eye-witness accounts and philosophical reflections the key events in the lives of princely and elite folk – the celebrities of the day." The collection is aimed at both lay and scholarly types. via
posted by peacay at 12:54 AM PST - 12 comments

Blogging being outsourced to China. Entrepreneurs outsource blogging for money-making schemes. Where can you read about it? Their blog of course.
posted by AVandalay at 12:49 AM PST - 28 comments

August 15

Japanese Propaganda from WWII I've seen & been fascinated by a fair amount of Allied propaganda from the second World War, including an exhibit at the Smithsonian a decade back, but this is the first bit of "enemy" propaganda I can remember running across. It's a pamphlet detailing Japan's plans for a better future. Another piece, "Farewell American Soldiers" piece which was leafleted to the troops is in English and is particularly chilling.
posted by jonson at 11:42 PM PST - 34 comments

What al-Qaida Really Wants: An Islamic Caliphate in Seven Easy Steps. German newspaper Der Spiegel offers a look at an Islamist plan for success by 2020, courtesy of journalist Fouad Hussein, who claims close connection with al-Qaida's inner circle. But does that inner circle really call the shots anymore? And how reliable are long-term global plans, anyway? [first link via The Agonist]
posted by mediareport at 9:59 PM PST - 29 comments

Philip Klass, dead at age 85. (Also at the NY Times.) Electrical engineer, aviation editor, and renowned UFO debunker, as well as CSICOP founder/fellow. Checking Phil Plait's Bad Astronomy blog, he left an interesting last message.
posted by ObscureReferenceMan at 9:13 PM PST - 38 comments

It was one of the great riddles of the cosmos. Along with black holes, the structure of space-time and the origins of the Big Bang, some of the greatest scientific minds have struggled with the dry spaghetti question. Why does uncooked spaghetti snap into more than two pieces when bent?
posted by Wet Spot at 8:13 PM PST - 23 comments

Open Source Flash
posted by Tlogmer at 8:08 PM PST - 3 comments

Sex & Games Finally, a place that seems to discuss sexuality in videogames as an adult topic. Brand new forum/blog/branch of the IGDA, their leadership is a) mostly female, b) commited to "The right of developers to work together to create sexually themed games free of censorship and regulation," and encouraging parental responsibility and c) a nice tonic for Jack Thompson's hysteria.
posted by WolfDaddy at 7:01 PM PST - 9 comments

Submitted for your approval. Very cool essay from Jonathan Lethem on the life of Rod Serling.
posted by braun_richard at 6:51 PM PST - 10 comments

FedEx Furniture.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 5:53 PM PST - 20 comments

Kitten on the Keyboard [Macromedia® Flash®]
posted by Pretty_Generic at 5:51 PM PST - 14 comments

Breakin' the law makin' the law. The Iraqi government has defied Donald Rumsfeld and given itself an additional week to iron out little details like the basic form of government, the role of Islam, and the name of the county. The only problem is, the extension is unconstitutional. Under Article 61F of the interim constitution, the extension had to have been requested "no later than 1 August 2005." [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 5:28 PM PST - 44 comments

What Makes People Gay? --long, informative article from Boston Globe on recent scientific developments regarding nature or nurture. Studies on twins, brothers, CGN, the "big brother" effect, fetal development, genetics, hormones, etc. and don't miss the Evangelical Preacher who converted to the belief that homosexuality is not a choice but rather a predisposition, something "deeply rooted" in people.
posted by amberglow at 4:58 PM PST - 151 comments

Build your own Rocket Belt (Jet Pack)! Jealous of 007 in Thunderball? Missed that eBay rocket belt sale a few years ago? Have a lust to fly like a bird (sort of) with a real rocket belt? Then build your own rocket belt just like Stuart Ross. Watch out for stuck throttles (avi file) though.
posted by caddis at 3:21 PM PST - 28 comments

I can do that! The latest excercise craze sweeping LA! It starts with light stretching and breathing excercises for half an hour. Then assume the "corpse pose" and wait for the neck massage. If you can stay awake.
posted by raaka at 1:53 PM PST - 36 comments

A Maoist take on Cindy Sheehan. To quote the Revolutionary Worker quoting Ms. Sheehan: "I want him (Bush) to tell me 'just what was the noble cause Casey died for'?", she declared. "Was it freedom and democracy? Bullshit! He died for oil. He died to make your friends richer. He died to expand American imperialism in the Middle East. "We're not freer here, thanks to your PATRIOT ACT. Iraq is not free. You get America out of Iraq and Israel out of Palestine and you'll stop the terrorism! There, I used the 'I' word--imperialism, and now I'm going to use another 'I' word -- impeachment--because we cannot have these people pardoned. They need to be tried on war crimes and go to jail." (Meanwhile, on the spot, Bush's neighbor is becoming irate; more on that via Yahoo News.)
posted by davy at 12:30 PM PST - 69 comments

Is this the cream of British humo[u]r, or just a pile of crap? Crap jobs, crap towns, and crap holidays, described with that classically British self-deprecating wit. And for those who prefer a more serious Britishness, try Crap Arrest of the Week on this week's edition of the excellent Schnews radical news site.
posted by cleardawn at 12:29 PM PST - 24 comments

You say bodyline, I say leg theory. Either way, the origins of one of sport's most enduring rivalries (leading to a near diplomatic crisis) make for a fascinating read to the budding cricket enthusiast. No wonder people turned out in their thousands to queue in the early hours for the final day of another nail-biting test. It's turning into a hell of an ashes series.
posted by nthdegx at 12:16 PM PST - 44 comments

Willful Barrenness
Check out the latest abominable sin from the folks that bring you Justice Sunday.
The sexual revolution has had many manifestations, but we can now see that modern Americans are determined not only to liberate sex from marriage (and even from gender), but also from procreation.
Sometimes the best of the web is the worst in human nature?
posted by nofundy at 11:58 AM PST - 114 comments

Vergangenheitsbewältigung, Israeli style? Amidst overwhelming public approval for the Gaza pullout, noted author David Grossman writes about the need for all Israelis to mourn today, in this Ha-Aretz editorial.
posted by ori at 11:32 AM PST - 44 comments

The coolest door ever.
posted by delmoi at 9:14 AM PST - 50 comments

The Goddess Bunny (Quicktime req) • IMDB user reviewThe documentary
posted by dhoyt at 6:34 AM PST - 22 comments

fleep.com is a wonderful repository of deep house electronic dance music mixes from Tokyo. The fleep.com mix archives is where you can find my favorite mixes such as "7am Sessions," "Situation Satellite," and the newest one, "4th Floor." Enjoy!
posted by gen at 3:21 AM PST - 14 comments

A private foundation is investing $14m to purchase greenhouses in Gaza. Israeli settlers had originally planned to demolish their greenhouses instead of seeing them handed over to Palestinian farmers. Under a deal brokered by former World Bank President James Wolfensohn 80% of Gaza's greenhouses will be preserved and turned over to Palestinian management. It is, of course, a trap for the Palestinian Authority. The greenhouses are simply the most visible part of a supply chain that the Palestinians cannot possibly manage. Without agricultural knowledge, market expertise, water management skills, good roads, and all the other infrastructure of a modern state, the greenhouses will fail spectacularly. The Palestinian Authority will be exposed as incompetent and unable to run even a simple enterprise. This will cast doubt amongst Palestinians about the practicality of an independent Palestine.
posted by three blind mice at 2:56 AM PST - 63 comments

August 14

The Life of King Edward the Confessor. A 13th century manuscript.
posted by plep at 11:32 PM PST - 5 comments

Have a Scar? Lots of people do. But I couldn't stop looking at the myriad variations and thinking about the myriad circumstances from which they arise once I started flipping through these arty and compelling pics...
posted by Sr_Cluba at 11:30 PM PST - 22 comments

The Unseen Video , a "weather controlled, dynamic music video". Fancy, interactive flash version for fast PCs here. Quicktime demos available too.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 11:21 PM PST - 3 comments

A picture of English nouns is a map of 33,000 English nouns. Each tiny rectangle corresponds to a noun. The color of the rectangle has been assigned a color, based on an internet image search for that noun. The words are clustered so that similar words are near each other. Gallery. (Java required)
posted by jikel_morten at 9:45 PM PST - 30 comments

Rockin' Country Style You usually hear the music termed "rockabilly," but the creator of this site prefers the term "country and western rock 'n' roll," a term he feels reflects what observers of the music's prime era (the mid-to-late 1950s) thought was going on, and is more inclusive besides (racially and also in regard to artificial genre boundaries). Whatever you think about his "theoretical scope," there is so much here to explore. And so much deeply, deeply odd music. The usual suspects are here, among them Elvis and the usual Sun heroes, as well Gene Vincent and Buddy Holly, etc. What is really interesting about this site, however, is how one can explore the evolution of a performer's sound (see: Link Wray) or the sounds of a geographical area or city. Then there are just so many great song samples, like Hep Cat Baby from Eddy Arnold and Fickle Chicken by the Atmospheres - and that's only from the A's! The site also features compilations by label, photographs of singles, and likes to sites dedicated to labels and performers. Terry Gordon, who oversaw the creation of this impossibly thorough database, is now working on a second database site dedicated to southern soul.
posted by raysmj at 8:01 PM PST - 14 comments

Andre Kertesz was a master of photography with a career spanning 70 years. His images manage the seemingly impossible of being iconic images of the ordinary and mundane. Exhibition currently at Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 7:47 PM PST - 7 comments

That would explain the $3000 dollar curry on my mastercard statement. Some Indian call centres are making a bit the side. Seems a fairly obvious scenario in retrospect.
posted by strawberryviagra at 6:46 PM PST - 20 comments

Having trouble keeping up with the latest from your buddy George? Try his new podcast.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 6:41 PM PST - 12 comments

Ipod Subway Maps
posted by Espoo2 at 6:17 PM PST - 18 comments

Former New Zealand Prime Minister David Lange died over the weekend. His loss will impact our country considerably – he championed our anti-nuclear policy which led to the end of Anzus and a falling out with the US that continues to this day, he spoke at the Oxford Union defending our stance on nuclear weapons and power and he was Prime Minister presiding over the far reaching economic reform that has arguably led to the economic prosperity Kiwi’s are enjoying right now. He was a man larger than life, funny, friendly and caring and his passing is being felt all over Godzone.
posted by Samuel Farrow at 6:00 PM PST - 25 comments

Video Games Live, a game-music-with-orchestra concert tour, has gotten lots of press; videogame music's gettting new attention.
posted by Tlogmer at 5:58 PM PST - 10 comments

Freedom at Midnight - At midnight, on the night of August 14th 1947, Jawaharlal Nehru claimed Independence from the British in New Delhi, India. 58 years later today, India along with China is in the mainstream news media as a "super power to be". While there is much discussion on how exactly all of this will play out in the near future, there are also some concerns as to whether this is nothing more than an updated version of the "burgeoning middle class of 140 million people" that sent numerous multinationals to unsuccessfully launch new products in this emerging market. However this tryst with destiny plays out, Happy Birthday India.
posted by infini at 1:55 PM PST - 16 comments

Flickr: Explore! makes it easier to find amazing photographs at Flickr.
posted by nthdegx at 10:04 AM PST - 37 comments

EXTREME quarter bouncing! (warning: embedded windows media video). The Michael Jordan of bouncing quarters into shotglasses, over lit zippos, off playing cards, across the length of the room, over other glasses, richocheting out of one glass & into the other, etc.
posted by jonson at 9:21 AM PST - 30 comments

I, for one, welcome... oh, never mind. It's a robot cat.
posted by Extopalopaketle at 9:01 AM PST - 32 comments

The KCNA Random Insult Generator is a fine way to build up your vocabulary for political debates, north korean style, you shameless lackeys!
posted by pyramid termite at 9:00 AM PST - 3 comments

They've found those WMDs! Well, not quite. Just chemicals that eventually could be turned into weapons. But what's interesting is that this chem lab dates from AFTER the US invasion.
posted by John of Michigan at 7:23 AM PST - 37 comments

The Rift: The state of Islamic Alienation in Europe and for that matter any Western nation. Do Muslims get to retain their complete identity, values, and customs unfettered by their residency in the West? I think not. Inversely, if 1-5% of the population in Saudi Arabia was western what could they expect of their adopted (i.e. a choice) Wahhabi nation... Where does this end?
posted by philmas at 7:22 AM PST - 34 comments

Is Nepal the Next Cambodia? Many experts fear the worst. Despite its tourist-friendly, pacific image, Nepal is teetering on the brink of collapse as a little-noticed but brutal Maoist insurgency tries to take down an equally vicious government. The story was reported by Matthew McAllester and photographed by Moises Saman, both of whom know something about surviving terror and violence. An Amnesty International report condemns the violence of both sides. This Royal Nepalese Army page describes its mission; take a look at His Majesty King Gyanendra Bir Bikram Shah Dev.
posted by etaoin at 4:44 AM PST - 12 comments

A Helios Airways Boeing 737 crashed into a mountain in Greece this morning. It is reported that there were 115 passengers and 6 crew aboard. According to the folks on airliners.net, shortly after take-off, the pilots reported some sort of problem with the cockpit air conditioning. Radio contact was then lost. The Greek air force scrambled two F-16s; the pilots reported that when they looked through the cockpit window they could see the co-pilot slumped forward across the controls, and no sign of the captain. The airliner subsequently flew into a mountaintop near Athens.
posted by cstross at 3:41 AM PST - 45 comments

Amend for Arnold & Jen (found on linkfilter) is a site trying to start up one of them "grassroots movements" to amend the Constitution of the United States, in order to allow naturalized citizens, those who were not born in the U.S. but have since become citizens, the possibility of holding the office of President. But not just out of a sense of social justice; primarily, it's to clear the way for an Arnold Schwarzenegger presidential campaign. (Or one for Jennifer Granholm... heh, whoever that is!)

It should be noted, for whatever it's worth, that Wikipedia's entry for Granholm states that she cares "not a whit" for running for president. Of special note are the slogans the AFA (gasp, not AFA&J?!?!) people cooked up to advance their cause, "Amend US," "Give 10 to Amend," and "Tell Your Friends 2 Amend." Because let's face it: if you voted for ol' Schwarzy, you're probably a little more susceptible to catchphrases than the average bear, hm? Oh I'm know I'm gonna catch it for that one.
posted by JHarris at 3:24 AM PST - 43 comments

Update on the killing of the innocent Brazilian man by London police at Stockwell station. A special report by the Observer reveals some of the key elements emerging from the ongoing investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission. Jean Charles de Menezes "wasn't wearing a heavy jacket. He used his card to get into the station. He didn't vault the barrier. And now police say there are no CCTV pictures to reveal the truth." So now the inquiry will have to rely exclusively on eyewitnesses accounts. It appears the man they saw vaulting the barrier was one of the armed officers in plain clothes, while de Menezes "simply walked towards the platform unchallenged". The plainclothes armed unit that shot de Menezes was not the same team that had been following him from his London flat: "there was a delay in calling an armed team to arrest de Menezes, which meant he had already entered the station by the time the officers arrived". Also, it appears that once inside the station, the armed officers had no radio contact with police on the outside. As new details emerge, more questions remain unanswered.
(As previously discussed here and here.)
posted by funambulist at 2:42 AM PST - 87 comments

Is NAFTA in danger? The United States has ignored the latest ruling on the Softwood Lumber dispute. A NAFTA panel has ruled unanimously against the duties. This is the third ruling on the matter, the previous two, supposedly binding, also being in Canada's favor. The Coalition for Fair Lumber Imports, a lobby group financed by International Paper and Georgia Pacific, are behind this belligerent assault on the world's largest bilateral trade partnership. The National Association of Home Builders is calling for compliance, but protectionism still looks to be winning.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 2:39 AM PST - 61 comments

August 13

Eskimo recipes from the students of the Shishmaref, Alaska Day School in 1952.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 10:36 PM PST - 17 comments

Kurt Stubers online collection of historic and modern day biology books.
posted by onkelchrispy at 8:14 PM PST - 5 comments

Four Amendments & a Funeral Rolling Stone accompanies Bernie Sanders (I-VT) before the Rules Committee. It ain't pretty. The aide laughed and explained that the best time for me to go would be just before the summer recess, a period when Congress rushes to pass a number of appropriations bills. "It's like orgy season," he said. "You won't want to miss that." ... Now, if Tom DeLay & Co. were going to disallow Sanders' amendment, they were going to have to openly defy a majority vote of the U.S. Congress to do so. Which, it turns out, isn't much of a stumbling block. ... In essence, the U.S. was giving $5 billion to a state-subsidized British utility to build up the infrastructure of our biggest trade competitor, along the way sharing advanced nuclear technology with a Chinese conglomerate that had, in the past, shared nuclear know-how with Iran and Pakistan. WARNING: Will not make you feel better about the Republican party leadership. Previous Bernie Sanders, and his battle with the PATRIOT Act
posted by Aknaton at 7:33 PM PST - 21 comments

Death for embezzling? The former chief of the state run Bank of China, Liu Jinbao, was given a suspended death sentence for embezzling 7.72M yuan (approximately 1M USD). His assets have been seized, and it is expected that his sentence will be commuted to life in prison. As China actively seeks to lure foreign investments, including banks, this is meant to send a strong signal about corruption in the financial sector.
posted by SirOmega at 4:21 PM PST - 18 comments

Walmart Murders Customer In Broad Daylight? They thought he shoplifted something, so they tackled him and held him down, shirtless, against the hot pavement...for ten minutes, he begged for his life and the 30-strong crowd did too...and when his heart finally stopped, the Walmart employees didn't even try to give him CPR. Somehow, this changes the discussion.
posted by effugas at 2:59 PM PST - 99 comments

Claudette Colvin --a Montgomery teen arrested 9 months before Rosa Park's now-famous refusal to sit in the back of the bus. There were 4 women who stood up before Mrs. Parks, yet most of us know nothing about them. It was their actions that led to the Supreme Court overturning segregation on public transit, yet Rosa Parks is the visible symbol. On worthy and "unworthy" messengers and symbols.
posted by amberglow at 2:20 PM PST - 14 comments

Today (if it's still Aug. 13th where you are) is the 70th birthday of the Roller Derby (being duly celebrated in Chicago and elsewhere). Tomorrow (unless it's already Aug. 14th where you are) is the 70th birthday of the Social Security Act. Compare and contrast...
(Round-numbered birthdays and anniversaries, you gotta love em. Hard to believe Burt "Robin" Ward turned 60 last month... but that "American Gothic" paining is only 75 years old.)
posted by wendell at 1:45 PM PST - 7 comments

A fascinating collection of flashlets and animated gifs. All black and white, most involving the same or very similar drawings of a man. Mostly SFW; there is sound though.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 11:20 AM PST - 12 comments

Listen to some Jelly Roll Morton, fill out a sex survey... Imagine taking the piano licks of Jelly Roll Morton and adding a Google Maps-like approach to mapping sexual activity in the US. The possibilities are endless...
posted by Mr. Six at 11:18 AM PST - 15 comments

What does the DEA say about drugs in your state? (Some states take a very hard line against gateway drugs...)
posted by dilettante at 10:40 AM PST - 36 comments

The Benefit Bank is a project which uses technology to improve the lives of low income Americans. Through the use of software and trained volunteers the program allows the needy to fill out one application which can be generated to receive assistance from a wide range of public and private resources. During stops in the South this week the Congressional Black Caucus Institute and National Council Of Churches sought volunteers and partners to help expand the program. The program has so far been opened in 48 sites in Pennsylvania, Florida, and Kansas including ACORN Housing, Jewish Employment and Vocational Service, and Germantown Avenue Crisis Ministry.
posted by robliberal at 9:50 AM PST - 4 comments

The greatest video in the history of the internet... Warning: embedded quicktime, severe hillbilly imagery. Via
posted by jonson at 9:01 AM PST - 97 comments


SMW - The complete soundtrack to Super Mario World, covered by one man using dozens of instruments. Roughly in game order, faithful to the originals, with some bizarre artistic license thrown around. A private hobby made public. Dedicated to Koji Kondo.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 6:46 AM PST - 20 comments

The History & Politics of Geology. College prof has his coursenotes online. Interesting reading includes Alcoa's aluminum monopoly, OPEC & Big Oil, and the Tudor Military-Industrial Complex.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 6:00 AM PST - 9 comments

Manic and mellow, the pop of YMCK shows that tight composition and live performance of video game-styled music isn't just for rock bands or eclectic GameBoy experiments, just as delightful 8-bit chip music or "chiptunes" make their way across the globe...
posted by Rothko at 3:31 AM PST - 6 comments

August 12

The Ballad of a Feller Named Oscar Wilde ( -mp3 link-, 5.13mb )
Found from the homepage of Joe. R. Lansdale, Champion Mojo Storyteller of Nagadoches, Texas (author of the story upon which Bubba Ho-Tep was based) and is, apparently, based on an actual event. Linked here because, well, because honestly we could all use a little more Dr. Demento in our lives.
posted by JHarris at 9:36 PM PST - 10 comments

Angelina Jolie: Cambodian. Has anyone else noticed that the press doesn't really know what to make of her lately, if ever. I mean, she broke up Brad and Jen! But she does good work for humanity! But she's crazy and seems like she may have had sex with her brother! But she's a good actress! Who makes bad movies! Well, apparently Cambodia wants her. Cambodia and every 16-year-old boy on the planet, as well as most of the girls.
posted by maxsparber at 7:36 PM PST - 61 comments

Less scary than Cheney. Christopher Walken for President 2008.
(Walken Friday flash... or just do a little dance!)
posted by insomnia_lj at 7:35 PM PST - 59 comments

Could any of us really score a photo scoop? Scoopt is an on-line photo agency that purports to help us amateur photographers sell photos to news outlets. You join for free, but they take a 50% cut of the profit. Is it worth that to have an on-call agent? Just in case I happen across a major news event some day? On the other hand, I like being a part of the Creative Commons world of Flickr, where my "artsy" shots are available for further artistic use.
posted by mmahaffie at 6:56 PM PST - 5 comments

Violence that had been building up in the Eastern coast of Sri Lanka has errupted in the capital with the assassination of the foreign affairs minister. Presumably the LTTE are involved in the killing, as they have been complaining for some time that the government has been sheltering a splinter group, conducting a covert-war. As one would expect, LankaWeb supplies a strong opinion on the assassination. One wonders if we will see Sri Lanka return to the state it was in some 10 years ago.
posted by chunking express at 6:52 PM PST - 9 comments

Researchers from the WWF have tracked a tagged polar bear swimming at least 74 km in just one day, and "maybe up to 100 km, providing the first conclusive proof the bears can cover such giant distances in the water." And now you too can track the location of the tagged long-distance-swimming bear, named Skadi, by checking out her WWF Polar Bear Tracker. If Skadi is boring you, however, why not check out the tracker for the WWF's other tagged bear, Borealis?
posted by Effigy2000 at 5:27 PM PST - 11 comments

I, for one, welcome our hummingbird-eating mantis overlords.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:54 PM PST - 48 comments

A ninja in a strange world... (friday flash)
posted by Citizen Premier at 3:08 PM PST - 12 comments

C'mon, Roger Ebert, tell us what you really think about "Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo." And on a completely related note, today Ebert's website launched "Ebert's Most Hated," a collection of classic zero- and one-star reviews. My favorites: "North" and "Freddy Got Fingered."
posted by Saucy Intruder at 1:32 PM PST - 118 comments

OK go's video for their song "A Million Ways" looks as low budget and as simple as it could be. Four members in a backyard, one camera on a tripod, and they simply dance. But I have to say it's one of my favorite music videos of the last few years. Direct link to high quality 16Mb quicktime, lower quality versions on their site [via 37s]
posted by mathowie at 1:03 PM PST - 46 comments

Closed Circuit TV and Data Confluence
Qinetiq is bringing their CCTV confluence technology, codenamed Praetorian, to the UK. "The system automatically tracks and stitches 3D images with CCTV video, maps and other real-time information. It automatically alerts operators to intruders, unusual behaviour, left objects or anything it is told to spot." And it looks more like a video game than a video feed. This new tech is perhaps not as controversial as Qinetiq's Millimetre Wave Imaging System that allows passive scanning through clothing to detect guns, knives or bombs.
Yes, it is very Big Brother-esque but its also pretty amazing technology too. Qinetiq previously discussed on MeFi here, here, here and here.
posted by fenriq at 12:17 PM PST - 7 comments

Camera as time machine in NYC In 1939 famed photographer Berenice Abbott published a classic book of New York City images called Changing New York. Some 75 years later photographer Douglas Levere decided to rephotograph the sites, waiting for the weather, season and angle of the sun to match, so that all that differed was the city's evolution. The book presenting the pictures side-by-side was noted here previously. But after it was mentioned on AskMe recently I noticed cool new stuff: 120+ pictures from the book free for the surfing here, and what is apparently its biggest public display to date, at the Museum of the City of New York.
posted by sacre_bleu at 12:12 PM PST - 27 comments

Gospel Mime to the EXTREME!!! Only the power of Jesus can help you escape from the box! Breaking though the barriers of religion and tradition, K&K Mime Minstries electrifies!
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:02 PM PST - 34 comments

Oral Histories From Sept. 11 Compiled by the New York Fire Department. New York City has started releasing records from September 11, including dispatch tapes, and a log of calls to Emergency Medical Service [PDF]. FDNY statement.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:00 PM PST - 17 comments

ASmallWorld is a very exclusive world, where participants seek advice on where to charter a private jet for a single person and use 'summer' as a verb. This invite-only website for the well-connected, famous, or just stinking rich has an alternate however. When an aSmallWorld member is no longer welcome, they are unceremoniously dumped to a less restricted set of forums called aBigWorld. I don't expect to get an invite anytime soon, so I can't tell you of their Illuminati-like plans to keep their lofty power. (via1, via2)
posted by Kickstart70 at 11:09 AM PST - 45 comments

"I found an abandoned grocery list in a St. Louis Schnuck's parking lot in 1996 or 1997. So I decided to keep them every time I came across one. And the internet is a great place to do stupid things." See the Best of for the author's picks, including my personal favorite.
posted by Emperor Yamamoto's Eggs at 10:23 AM PST - 25 comments

Should Catholic Justices recuse themselves from any case citing Roe v. Wade? Now that Catholic politicians have been threatened with having sacraments withheld for supporting Roe v. Wade, does this create an inherent conflict of interest for a Catholic Supreme Court justice (or any judge) in a case involving Roe? According to the American Bar Association's Code of Conduct for United States Judges, Canon 3, Section C 1 (c), a judge must disqualify himself when he has 'a financial interest . . . or any other interest that could be affected substantially by the outcome of the proceeding."
posted by caddis at 9:46 AM PST - 63 comments

Scientists find errors in global warming data. Heating from tropical sunlight was skewing temperatures reported by satelite sensors, making nights look as warm as days. The George C. Marshall Institute declined to comment. The group, financed by the petroleum industry, has used the data disparities to dispute the views of global-warming activists. Researchers say it removes a last bastion of scientific doubt about global warming
posted by stbalbach at 9:34 AM PST - 39 comments

This website is about advertising mistakes, such as the L in Staples, capitalized letters where they shouldn't be, and other things that could confuse kindergarten students.
posted by angry modem at 9:29 AM PST - 79 comments

What do you call two thereminists in a room together? A convention. Well, about 50 thereminists gathered for the Ether Music 2005 Convention last week in Asheville, NC. But what’s a theremin, you ask? You can meet a theremin, marvel at it’s award-winning beauty (scroll down), hear one live, enjoy some theremin humor, buy a vintage theremin, or if that’s too pricey, build one or even enter to win your very own. (previously discussed here, here and here)
posted by grateful at 8:48 AM PST - 22 comments

Metro Bits documents some of the most aesthetically pleasing world metro systems including the art/architecture, logos (variations on the 'M' theme) and views with a good selection of associated photographs and links. [via] (moscow)
posted by peacay at 8:11 AM PST - 10 comments

The secret behind George W Bush's appeal to the majority of Americans has been revealed at last (warning: embedded quicktime video); it's all the work of his professional speechalist.
posted by jonson at 7:55 AM PST - 57 comments

John is not really dull, he may only need his eyes examined. Remarkable posters from the Work Progress Administration, 1936-1943. You can view the collection highlights or the entire archive. A few personal favorites, including a surprisingly fetching cow. The site also includes some interesting historical and critical resources. Now get back to work!
posted by Sully6 at 7:25 AM PST - 15 comments

Mathematical Knitting. Knit your own Mobius bands and Klein bottles.
posted by greasy_skillet at 7:08 AM PST - 8 comments

Exploitation in the United Arab Emirates: A total of 36 Bangladeshi children employed as 'camel jockeys' in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have returned home yesterday ending their prolonged sufferings in the oil-rich nation. "The job is very tiresome. We had to work from morning till night, tending the camels, training them, cleaning their faeces and mounting the camels in the racing games." In 2003, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights reported on the issue. Pictures via AntiSlavery.org.
posted by dhoyt at 6:30 AM PST - 6 comments

Do liberals and conservatives have mutually exclusive career aspirations for their children? (reg req'd). Some, including the White House, think so. "Our party, in the way it is constituted, we think of medicine, we think of law, we think of business. We don't think, gee, I hope my son grows up to be a great playwright or painter or poet." -- White House deputy director of public liason Tim Goeglein. Are conservative parents pushing their ideological bias against the liberal-dominated arts world onto their kids, or are they simply being realistic? "Of course, you would have to be insane to hope your child grows up to be a playwright or poet. Given the odds, you would have to be quite cavalier about your children's future." -- author and conservative parent Mark Helprin.
posted by schoolgirl report at 5:24 AM PST - 93 comments

Thou art no Romeo
It turns out that the beloved pair of swan's in Boston's Public Garden are a same-sex couple.

Tests have shown that the pair, named Romeo and Juliet, are really Juliet and Juliet. The city's Parks and Recreation Department conducted the tests months ago, but didn't announce the results for fear of destroying the image of a Shakespearean love story unfolding each year in the Public Garden.

'If these two swans are happy together, they shouldn't have to have a guy," said Emma Stokien, a 15-year-old from New York. 'It's good to have the swans as a symbol of the acceptance in Massachusetts."
posted by ericb at 4:16 AM PST - 55 comments

News Nishikie. The art of Meiji mayhem. 'Graphic true stories from Japan as portrayed and reported by woodblock artists and writers '
posted by plep at 3:49 AM PST - 8 comments

August 11

Everything you want to know about snowflakes from the unusual to the artificial to the ones that are just really pretty.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 11:36 PM PST - 9 comments

Need to fill out a mix for the next Mefi-Swap? Here is a handy A-Z list of Largehearted Boy's favourite free music download sites.
posted by Quartermass at 4:04 PM PST - 22 comments

The life of an average Wang.
posted by delmoi at 2:45 PM PST - 28 comments

Looking to learn that awesome programming language but lack the drive? Take the challange!
posted by Mach5 at 2:44 PM PST - 40 comments

Siberia's permafrost is melting. New Scientist reports that 250 million acres of permafrost are thawing, exposing the world's largest peat bog. This is likely to release billions of tons of methane gas. This would likely cause a positive feedback loop, massively accelerating global warming.
posted by mosch at 2:33 PM PST - 87 comments

Well it's happened the developer release of Mac OS X Intel x86 has been "hacked" to run on a PC Laptop. Here's the video torrent. (via)
posted by Livewire Confusion at 2:21 PM PST - 47 comments

Did the discovery of evolution lead to Darwin's agnosticism, as claimed? Carl Zimmer wonders. More importantly, can evolution be reconciled with Christianity?
posted by daksya at 2:13 PM PST - 90 comments

Comic Strip Generator. Slovene/English dual language site [Flash] that allows you to generate your own comics from a pregenerated set of people and objects. You can also view other people's creations.
posted by BackwardsCity at 2:07 PM PST - 18 comments

Blogs fulfill Berners-Lee vision of the World Wide Web according to this interview on BBC.
posted by bobbyelliott at 1:29 PM PST - 8 comments

If I were a journalist, I would list all the arguments that you hear against pulling U.S. troops out of Iraq, the horrible things that people say would happen, and then ask: Aren’t they happening already? Would a pullout really make things worse? Maybe it would make things better... The wisest course for journalists might be to begin sustained investigations of why leading Democrats have failed so miserably to challenge the US occupation of Iraq. The first step, of course, is to establish as conventional wisdom the fact that the war was never in the US interest and has not become so. It is such an obvious case to make that I find it difficult to believe many pundits and political leaders have not already made it repeatedly.   Lieutenant General William E. Odom : What’s Wrong With Cutting and Running ? See also Early Pullout Unlikely In Iraq & Myers: Possibility of third Iraq tours for active-duty troops 'always out there'...
posted by y2karl at 11:41 AM PST - 45 comments

Don't let the copyright office REQUIRE IE. Take a break from email and Web surfing to send a real, paper letter (with five copies) to the U.S. Copyright office and tell them that REQUIRING use of IE for online preregistration of copyright claims is not acceptable. Read the request for public comment and then send an original and five copies of your public comment to:
Copyright GC/ I&R
P.O. Box 70400
Southwest Station
Washington, DC 20024-0400
posted by twsf at 11:06 AM PST - 60 comments

Emergence of the Progressive Blogosphere: A New Force in American Politics

Since March of 2005, the total number of blogs has grown from 7.8 million to 14.2 million. At this rate, the online universe is doubling in size every five months. This memo is a comprehensive look at the underlying dynamics of these online communities, along with a targeted analysis of how to engage them to generate political power.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 10:41 AM PST - 20 comments

It's time again for the best meteor shower of the year: The Perseids!   Also known as the Tears of St. Lawrence I did not know that. NASA's page has a nice star chart. Here is a gallery of shots from the 2004 shower, a BBC gallery, and tips for photographing meteors. Cloudy where you are? Don't despair: LISTEN to the meteor shower!
posted by spock at 10:29 AM PST - 13 comments


Dog Poo Girl : "A woman and her dog are riding the Seoul subways. The dog poops in the floor. The woman refuses to clean it up, despite being told to by other passengers. Someone takes a picture of her, posts it on the Internet..."
posted by starscream at 9:44 AM PST - 104 comments

Superman Takes on the KKK. In the 1940s, reporter Stetson Kennedy infiltrated the Klu Klux Klan, gathering information on everything from their membership to their secret code words . Kennedy then gave this information to the producers of the Superman radio show. The resulting episodes, titled “Clan of the Fiery Cross” (listen to them here)incorporated actual Klan terminology and rituals, exposing the nation to the inner workings of this “secret” organization.
posted by jrossi4r at 7:33 AM PST - 30 comments

"It isn't easy to be smart about baseball if you didn't grow up with the game, but Farish asked decent enough questions. It was the answers that came hard. We must have resembled three mathematicians so lost in their highly refined work that they haven't noticed how quaint and opaque the terminology is, how double-meaning'd. We argued the language and tried to unravel it for the outsider."
posted by .kobayashi. at 6:22 AM PST - 24 comments

It is the year 3065.
Mankind has long been extinct, and the only forms of life left are two warring species: the worms, and the dots. You happen to be one unlucky worm, having crash landed in the middle of a whole crapload of evil dots. Luckily you have infinite lives.
Friday Flash Fun
Also, check out "The Search For Fonzie's Treasure," winner of the 2005 'hardest RPG of the year' award.
posted by Edible Energy at 5:01 AM PST - 47 comments

Were these guys birdwatchers, or IRA members training FARC guerillas in improvised explosive techniques? Suddenly, mysteriously back on Irish soil, the "Colombia 3" - James Monaghan, Niall Connolly and Martin McCauley - have caused a shitstorm for Bertie Ahern and his ministers; especially in the wake of the newly announced IRA disarmament.
posted by punkbitch at 12:51 AM PST - 17 comments

August 10

Disengagement: The Game The debate in Israel over the withdrawal from Gaza has found its way into, of all things, dueling cartoony Flash games. The first, the Wild West Bank, by proponents of withdrawal, has you removing settlers from the West Bank before they can establish settlements. The second, the "Disengagement Game" (click the square yellow button beside the picture), has you take the role of Ariel Sharon, whose political nickname is the "Bulldozer," as he uses his namesake (plus a club and a gaggle of pigs) to remove children protesting his policies. According to the creators of each, the first is supposed to be enlightening, the second purely entertaining. [Instructions inside]
posted by blahblahblah at 9:25 PM PST - 4 comments

Jewish group denounces video on Auschwitz Housewitz, a incredibly racist video mixing Auschwitz with a dance party, has come under fire from, well, everyone. Creator claims it was a joke. The video (Warning: GRAPHIC, RACIST, NSFW).
posted by null terminated at 8:35 PM PST - 61 comments

Are you an adult? Like to suck your thumb? Then you've got a new home on the Web! (Warning: circa 1992 web design). Be sure to check out adult thumbsucking poetry and short stories. Not to be confused with the new Keanu Reeves movie.
posted by zardoz at 7:52 PM PST - 10 comments

e-Qaeda: A special report on how jihadists use the internet and technology to spread their message. (requires flash)
posted by Dreamghost at 7:42 PM PST - 13 comments

An American Giant Dies Who can fill Matthew McGrory's 29 1/2 shoes?
posted by maxsparber at 7:41 PM PST - 20 comments

Theatre Ephemera. A terrific collection of photographs and drawings of pre-twentieth century American theaters and the actors who graced their stages. Sumptuous auditoriums, gorgeous costumes and famous faces. [Via Bibi's Box]
posted by LeeJay at 7:14 PM PST - 7 comments

Mums give it their breast shot. Australia held the record, the USA took it off them, lost it back to Australia, who still hold it, despite recent attempts by in New Zealand and the USA to better the mark. When did simultaneous breastfeeding get so competitive?
posted by noizyboy at 6:35 PM PST - 13 comments

Old Grandma Hardcore. "This blog is the chronicle of my experiences with Grandma, the video-game playing queen of her age-bracket and weight class. She will beat any PS2, XBox, GameCube, etc., console game put in front of her..." A 22-year-old man blogs about his grandmother's video game obsession.
posted by greasy_skillet at 6:14 PM PST - 17 comments

English names for groups various creatures are often bizarre. Many of the stranger collective nouns came from the Boke of St. Albans. Most lists don't include a "parliament of rooks" any longer. Lists of collective animal names are available for children and adults. Though, oddly there doesn't seem to be a collective name for humans as a species, numerous names (mostly silly) exist for types of human groups. Dispute does exist in the world of collective nouns. Officially monkeys are grouped in "troops", but most people would agree that the proper term for a group of monkeys is barrel . However debate seems to have been closed on the subject of the proper term for a group of tentacle monsters (NSFW). Of course, you have to know how the proper grammar when using collective nouns.
posted by sotonohito at 5:42 PM PST - 33 comments

iFilm's War Zone has videos "purportedly shot, edited and submitted by U.S. and other coalition troops in Iraq and Afghanistan" as well as videos by "various insurgent or paramilitary groups." Via the Washington Post, which highlights hardcore helicopter ballet choreographed to AC/DC's "Thunderstruck," a Mahdi Army PR video, and what "appears to be fornication in a convertible." The New York Times says "it's hard to say which are scarier: the clips themselves or the advertisements that run with them." [Some clips NSFW.]
posted by kirkaracha at 4:53 PM PST - 17 comments

This guy is pretty much living the dream of many MeFites, I'd wager.
posted by keswick at 4:08 PM PST - 65 comments

More Bush stuff you couldn't make up: Jeb Bush, Miami Dolphin.
posted by barjo at 3:01 PM PST - 29 comments

No logos project. Delete!, fettered capitalism in Vienna.
posted by fatllama at 2:28 PM PST - 23 comments

Cindy Sheehan says Bill O'Reilly is an "Obscenity to Humanity" [...]Asked how she feels about the MSM devoting so much time to the Natalee Holloway story, Sheehan said "Holloway is a tragedy for one family" but what she's doing is trying to help thousands of families avoid tragedy.[...]
posted by Postroad at 2:14 PM PST - 77 comments

You can't make this stuff up: Rumsfeld announces that the Bush administration is planning to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks with an "America Supports You freedom walk" from the Pentagon saluting the troops deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom, followed by a show by "country music superstar" Clint Black at the National Mall. (Not to imply that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with 9/11 or anything...)
posted by digaman at 1:52 PM PST - 136 comments

Serenity the Movie is coming out September 30th. The full-length movie version of Firefly, Fox's sci-fi disaster that was canceled 12 episodes into the 14 episode series.
posted by benkolb at 1:20 PM PST - 69 comments

Aerial photography
posted by Mwongozi at 1:12 PM PST - 14 comments

Heldencrow catalogues the far-flung adventures of an Irish barrister who nipped out of the Dublin law library on a coffee break one afternoon and never went back. Written between 2001 and 2004, his world reports run the gamut, from London to Colorado to the Himalaya. Don't miss his meditations on opera and his hand-drawn cartoon, The Hat and Spoon.
posted by nyterrant at 10:42 AM PST - 6 comments

How To Live Forever: More research suggests that there is no such thing as aging, and reminds me of that quote from the Barbarian Brothers, "there is no such thing as overtraining, there is only undereating and undersleeping." As opposed to Timothy 8. Also, I LOVE the HNRCA database. Get yer mutli people, get it!
posted by ewkpates at 10:12 AM PST - 45 comments

The First Earth Battalion [5MB PDF]. Jim Channon went on a two year research mission for the US Army to discover how they could become more cunning - in 1979 he presented them with this book. As the person presenting this text only version says "If nothing else, the following paper does suggest why drug testing became common for all ranks during the mid-1980s"
posted by dodgygeezer at 10:11 AM PST - 25 comments

For all you cutters - Scar Wars. If you think that ink is too dirty and want to go au natural.
posted by guruguy9 at 10:04 AM PST - 296 comments

Finding good coffee - I am a big fan of both del.icio.us and good coffee (i.e. not over-roasted crud from Starbucks), so I was very happy to see the two combined in CafeSpot which calls itself "a social guide to independent cafes, coffee shops, restaurants and more".
posted by arete at 9:50 AM PST - 11 comments

Why are we not talking about Haiti? "No one has asked questions about the wildly partisan officials in U.S. State Department now running U.S. policy in the Caribbean and Latin America. These include such Blast-from-the-Past supporters of Reagan era highjinks in Central America as Otto Reich, John Negroponte, Elliot Abrams, and (before his ignominious departure last summer) John Poindexter."
posted by j-urb at 9:48 AM PST - 13 comments

Did you know that Merlot = cherry + plum + raspberry + strawberry + Dr. Pepper? Neither did I. But at the Jelly Belly Wine Bar, you can recreate your favorite varietals in confectionery form.
posted by Vidiot at 9:29 AM PST - 20 comments

Is My Child Becoming Homosexual? A helpful guide from the kind people at Focus on the Family. "Don’t wait until your daughter’s masculinized behavior or your son’s effeminate preferences get any worse!"
posted by adrober at 7:26 AM PST - 309 comments

Microsoft settles with spammer Richter for $7m and Richter does a little happy dance. $7 million is chump change for this scumbag. Microsoft, where is my cut of that 7 million?
posted by antifuse at 7:19 AM PST - 17 comments

Where there's smoke there's fire. The AIPAC spy scandal, new developments with foreign lobbies compromising our nation's security, major government officials involving themselves in drug money laundering, military weapons procurement for dangerous nations, penetration of our intelligence agencies and the pentagon by foreign spy agencies. When will the smoke turn to fire?
posted by mk1gti at 5:29 AM PST - 15 comments

The Iraq Coalition Casualty Count has breakdowns of the casualties of the Iraq War and Occupation, by home city of record, name, branch of service, rank, and cause of death, and other statistics such as ethnicity, as well as a printable list of all fatalities to date. [previously mentioned here,here,here, and here.]
posted by exlotuseater at 12:02 AM PST - 10 comments

August 9

"Legal Torrents" is a collection of Creative Commons-licensed, legally downloadable, freely distributable creator-approved files, from electronic/indie music to movies and books, which we have made available via BitTorrent."
posted by mcsweetie at 9:37 PM PST - 20 comments

Blog readers are young and rich. A study [.pdf] released today concludes that as blogs continue to grow, blog readers are tending to be geekier and more affluent than previously thought. Nick Denton who helped sponsor the study (with SixApart) is delighted with the results.
posted by tsarfan at 7:50 PM PST - 40 comments

Unless you are German you may not have heard of Winnetou and Old Shatterhand, characters created by Karl May. A possible D.I.D. sufferer, he had never set foot in America and began to write his Wild West stories whilst in jail. Popular with readers across Europe, his books have been translated into over thirty different languages. Spaghetti Westerns partly came about because early 60s films [test your knowledge] based on his books, inspired Italian producers to invest in Westerns. His life story was made part of Syberberg's trilogy in 1974.
posted by tellurian at 7:37 PM PST - 26 comments

They're being called the Kutztown 13 - a group of high schoolers charged with felonies for bypassing security with school-issued laptops, downloading forbidden Internet goodies and using monitoring software to spy on district administrators. The students, their families and outraged supporters say authorities are overreacting. The Kutztown Area School District begs to differ. A website –- Cut Us A Break – is dedicated to their situation. A hearing is set for Aug. 24 in Berks County juvenile court, where the 13 have been charged with computer trespass.
posted by ericb at 3:41 PM PST - 73 comments

Gothic fonts , aka Blackletter, aka Fraktur are often associated with Nazi propaganda these days. And indeed, at the beginning the Nazis encouraged their use...that is, until, in one of the most bizarre decrees of the Third Reich, Hitler declared them "non-German" and even "Jewish" and banned them with immediate effect. Funny thing is, Fraktur would take its vengeance on Hitler fans forty years later... (And before any typographic pedant points it out, yes, I know Fraktur is a subdivision of the Gothic/Blackletter family of fonts)
posted by Skeptic at 2:29 PM PST - 32 comments

"He is profane, uneducated, impious, lecherous, and unwashed. He doesn’t care much about the war. In most cases, he misses his mother badly. But the American combat infantryman in Iraq is doing just fine." An in-depth (and apolitical) profile of day-to-day life in the 506th Infantry; "the same regiment that immortalized itself as the Band of Brothers in Normandy and Bastogne during World War II."
posted by kirkaracha at 2:09 PM PST - 19 comments

Massively Multiplayer Online Photo Sharing. A too-brief interview with Eric Costello about how The5K * begat The Game Neverending* begat Flickr.* "There’s kind of a feeling of exploration within Flickr. It feels like a world where you can move around and find wonderful things – the wonderful things being the great photographs that people upload."
posted by grabbingsand at 1:44 PM PST - 14 comments

What's so funny?
posted by gilgamix at 1:42 PM PST - 9 comments

The Scourge of Arial. It has spread like a virus through the typographic landscape and illustrates the pervasiveness of Microsoft's influence in the world. Arial, however, has a rather dubious history and not much character. In fact, Arial is little more than a shameless impostor...
posted by Robot Johnny at 12:35 PM PST - 97 comments

Sushi Encyclopedism covers everything from history to ettiquette to comics to the difference between 鯉 and 鮪.
posted by 김치 at 12:32 PM PST - 38 comments

DTV beta for Mac is now live. DTV is a new, free and open-source platform for internet television and video. The goal here is to make sure that internet TV is open and independent. Free, open source software and open standards mean anyone can watch and everyone has a voice.
posted by signal at 11:37 AM PST - 23 comments

"I think my beliefs had changed once we were on the ground. Within days we had seized all of the oil fields in northern Iraq and our primary mission was to protect them. Bush had said this war wasn't about oil, but there I was defending oil fields at all costs in the middle of Iraq. A lot of the piping and workings of the fields had been destroyed by the fleeing army and before we even started to help the people by fixing the power or water supplies, they had construction crews trying to get everything up and running on the oil fields."

An interview with Zechariah, 25, of Lynnwood, Washington. He enlisted in the Army when he was 21, and was deployed to Iraq from March 2003 to January 2004 with the 173rd Airborne Brigade as a medic.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 11:25 AM PST - 120 comments

"..there is not, and has not been, a state of war between the United Kingdom and the Republic of Iraq..."

The Chancery Division of the High Court has held that the UK is not, nor has it ever been, at war with Iraq. Whew! I bet that's a relief to all the dead and injured... The question came up before the court because a certain Mr Brown was being sued by an Iraqi woman for money allegedly owed to her from property rental. Mr Brown's defence is that she cannot bring a claim against him because she is an 'enemy alien'. Judge says 'Bite me'.
posted by essexjan at 9:13 AM PST - 47 comments

Good journey, Joop. "Joop was our handsome goodhearted 'boerenfox' (farmer's fox terrier). For three good years, he lived with us in the small town of Paterswolde, The Netherlands. We found Joop in 2002 in an animal shelter in Zuidwolde. Joop was a canine supermodel." The Dog Log shows Joop's life in pictures and his human's in words. Joop passed away August 8, 2005 from cancer and has quite a following on Flickr.com. Being the owner of a 14-year-old dog, the display of support really touched me and the photos are beautiful.
posted by VelvetHellvis at 9:10 AM PST - 10 comments

Deep Joy! "Professor" Stanley Unwin was the inventor of an off-the-cuff, comically mangled dialect known as Unwinese, which sounded almost but not quite like English. He appeared in a number of British comedy shows in the 1960s and 1970s. Here's his take on Elvis Presley[mp3], Doctor Who [mp3], and the Olympic Games. He died in 2002, aged 90.
posted by carter at 9:01 AM PST - 10 comments

Today is the 10th anniversary of the death of famed guitarist Jerry Garcia. He remains one of the top earning dead celebrities through his name branded sales of ties, wine and action figures. To commemorate his passing, fans put on Jerry Day in San Francisco on Sunday. Love him or hate him, his legacy lives on through his music. What's your favorite Jerry memory?
posted by grateful at 8:19 AM PST - 109 comments

Girls of '64 ... preserving the sexy side of the C64. (NSFW)
posted by Ljubljana at 7:42 AM PST - 11 comments

Slate's Today's Papers went the extra op-ed mile today to discuss an NYT front page story that alleges that DOD intelligence pegged 3 of the 9/11 hijackers as al-Qaeda agents in the U.S. back in 2000. Remember, this is the same DOD that, under Rumsfeld, wants to establish its own intelligence agency outside of the CIA, having bumbled an earlier incarnation. The problem? The article is primarily sourced to Rep. Curt Weldon (R-PA) and the ubiquitous "unnamed defense official". Weldon's primary source is an associat of Manucher Gorbanifar, "a well-known Iranian exile whom the CIA branded as a fabricator during the 1980s but who was used by the Reagan White House as a middleman for the arms-for-hostages deal with Iran." Oh, and he's got a new book out. The NYT has apparently learned nothing.
posted by mkultra at 7:14 AM PST - 9 comments

Now that Discovery is home safe and well, let's take a moment to remember some anxious moments 36 years ago, when President Nixon had a contingency memo prepared to read in case that Neil Armstrong et al. were somehow unable to return to Earth. The forgotten memo, written by William Saffire, is from the National Archives.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 6:57 AM PST - 18 comments

Neo-Nazis and Minutemen --What's going on, of course, is that the Minutemen provide an ideal opportunity for white racists to "mainstream" their agenda, using the relatively benign "average citizens" that Lou Dobbs exclusively observes in their ranks as just so much cover. "Illegal immigration" has become a hot-button wedge campaign issue for the GOP in 06, and the latest incarnation of their "Southern Strategy" (now called "wrong", but still very much in evidence)
posted by amberglow at 6:34 AM PST - 118 comments

Discovery is coming home... Around now (6.06am EDT) STS114 is due to commence firing its orbital maneuvering engines for 2 minutes and 42 seconds and commence its entry of the atmosphere to return home to Edwards Air Force base. Florida was declared a "no go" both yesterday and today due to weather conditions.

Weather at Edwards is good. Landing tracks from NASA available here.
BBC story with live video footage is here.
Pilot Jim Kelly is handling the de-orbit burn, according to commentary and mission commander Eileen Collins will make the final approach and touch down at Edwards.

Best of luck, Discovery, I'm sure I speak for all when I say that all of our thoughts are with you.
posted by tomcosgrave at 4:02 AM PST - 130 comments

The Protagonist : Virtual Entrepreneur is a 5 minute excerpt of the crossover machinima/meatworld documentary project Ideal World, and is about one user's "real life" in the MMORPG Second Life. The finished documentary seeks to examine the growth, impact and society of this amazing digital reality over the last 2 years.
[ via New World Notes ] Disclaimer: I am not a Second Life player- as much as I would like to be, I'm too scared it's too much fun.
posted by elphTeq at 2:23 AM PST - 7 comments

First National Lampoon does a "parody" of the bumps on Cartoon Network's popular Adult Swim programming block. Then G4's Attack of the Show responded (and the editor of the Lampoon's site responds in the comments -- look for posts by JayPink), and then Adult Swim themselves did on Sunday (Flash re-creation of the aired bump). Main link NSFW/those with a sense of humor
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 1:08 AM PST - 61 comments

August 8

Tawdry, tawdry stuff "Another prison guard smuggling dope, another cop caught tweaking, an airport security professional trying to get rich, a horny Florida deputy, and a Michigan police chief who sounds like a real decadent party animal." Lots of not-so-fun reading in Corrupt Cops Stories, a weekly feature in the Drug War Chronicle. The archive goes back a few years.
posted by mediareport at 11:34 PM PST - 11 comments

Know less than nothing!? What could negative knowledge possibly mean? In short, after I tell you negative information, you will know less... "In this week's issue of Nature, however, Michal Horodecki and colleagues present a fresh approach to understanding quantum phenomena that cannot be grasped simply by considering their classical counterparts." [via slashdot :]
posted by kliuless at 10:40 PM PST - 26 comments

War Plans Drafted To Counter Terror Attacks in U.S. Subtitled "Domestic Effort Is Big Shift for Military". See also martial law. (I wonder how this would contrast/compare with FEMA? ) And yes, I know this is "newsfilter", so take me out and shoot me.
posted by davy at 10:31 PM PST - 36 comments

Have you ever had one of those days where you can't decide whether you want to post about the recall of dog condoms or about the Russian mail order bride online service that tailors exclusively to amputee fetishists? I'm having that right now.
posted by jonson at 7:41 PM PST - 34 comments

Have you thought about Harry Nilsson lately? Far be it from me to cast aspersions, but if you haven't, then you ain't nothin'. An amazingly varied discography, friends in high places, and a genuine knack for the bizarre all make Harry a candidate for the Pop Hall of Fame. Oh, and he worked with everybody.
posted by ford and the prefects at 6:06 PM PST - 42 comments

Want to learn to be a CSI? It's the U.S. government's multimedia website to train police and evidence recovery personnel. You can try the tests - the advanced one will tell you if you convicted the accused or not. Pretty slick for Uncle Sam.
posted by birdsquared at 6:05 PM PST - 22 comments

A huge, comprehensive collection of Italian soundtrack covers. With print runs as small as 300, some of these soundtracks are impossible to find nowadays. Some of the cover art is really fantastic. There's a pretty extensive collection of French, German, American, English and Japanese soundtracks too.
posted by tellurian at 5:44 PM PST - 4 comments

The Confabulators. They Are Confabulators!! They Write About Music!! They Have Come From The Decemberists Board!! Ahhhh! It began on a message board (reg. required). All the latest news about The Decemberists, Sufjan Stevens, and now, more! Their latest entry: A review of Pitchfork's review of Sufjan's Illinois. That'll teach 'em.
posted by ludwig_van at 5:37 PM PST - 18 comments

Pink Is The New Blog I don't know why I like it. I just do.
posted by WolfDaddy at 5:17 PM PST - 34 comments

Hope for hungry children, arriving in a foil packet [NYT article], interesting article about a seemingly simple (if partial) solution to malnutrition in Niger: a peanut-butter-like mixture that avoids the problems associated with traditional treatment methods. What truly interests-and bothers me-about this article is that a French company came up with this. Is there an American company that makes products simply to alleviate world hunger?
posted by ancientgower at 5:17 PM PST - 33 comments

From the things you never thought you would see happen category: Dan Savage of Savage Love fame guest is guest editing conservative Andrew Sullivan's political blog.
posted by phatboy at 5:10 PM PST - 13 comments

Prolacta, Human Breast Milk for sale
posted by sourbrew at 4:43 PM PST - 36 comments

The GMap Pedometer is the coolest Google maps application I've seen. I found my 3-mile round trip daily commute is really only 2.5 miles, damnit.
posted by MrMoonPie at 1:04 PM PST - 83 comments

Jonathan Lethem 's fans will be happy (unhappy, missing, or set to vibrate) to know that the author has stuffed the glove compartment of his website with a heap of unpublished writings, including musings on everything from rick james and rod serling, an obscure children's book written by Eric Berne , and a tour-de-force portrait of the artist Fred Tomaselli. The site itself, by Will Amato, seems to randomly load a different design each time you refresh the page. I like the noir tableau with the devo hat, the kiddie drawing that plays a soul song, then endless looping drive on a lonely highway, and the montage of Dr Strange, Superman, and the Rawhide Kid.
posted by stacyhall1 at 11:18 AM PST - 18 comments

How good is your parking? (flash)
posted by john_son at 10:25 AM PST - 56 comments

A giant octopus takes on a shark in a video like something from a horror movie (low-res version). Octopuses are remarkable creatures, and are much more intelligent than you may think, especially given some of the movies they've inspired.
posted by cerebus19 at 9:26 AM PST - 80 comments


So, apparently there is a certain danger that James Bond will be putt-putting around in a 4WD Fiat Panda. What is the world coming to? It hardly fits in with the rest of the James Bond vehicle park. A propos Bond-cars - in 1997, James Bond's original DB5 was stolen and was never recovered. Someone, somewhere, has this piece of motoring history stashed away.
posted by SharQ at 8:41 AM PST - 35 comments

Operation Mincemeat Sometimes in war, you don't need kilotonnage; you need a good plan instead. And what a plan it was. A dead body, a submarine commander, and a future spy novelist. The amazing thing is, it worked.
posted by John of Michigan at 7:53 AM PST - 11 comments

"Gimme the beer money back," says South Carolina's GOP, after corporate largesse from brewer Anheuser Busch is accidently sent to and cashed by the state's Democratic organization, which were out to happy hour at press time.
posted by Rothko at 7:06 AM PST - 48 comments

What's your favorite Beatles record? Now you can listen for those anomolies.
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 12:26 AM PST - 107 comments

CIA Electronic Reading Room, thousands of formerly secret documents. A much better resource now that it was some time ago. This is straight via MoFi, but I found it so interesting I could not resist sharing it here as well for any researchers or people like me who are just curious (currently). Linked in a previous thread about something else but I think it deserved a mention of its own.
posted by keijo at 12:10 AM PST - 8 comments

August 7

Google blacklists CNET reporters? An article about privacy issues that highlighted the potential for abuse if logs of search terms linked with IP addresses are combined by search companies with address and phone data, angered Google CEO Eric Schmidt enough to blacklist CNET reporters for a year, at least according to the bottom of this CNET story. The article begins with information about Schmidt found via Google searches, and goes on to "question Google's ability to adequately balance the heavy burden of safeguarding consumer privacy rights with the pull toward intermingling and mining data for ever more lucrative targeted advertising."
posted by mediareport at 10:36 PM PST - 18 comments

What A Revolutionary Laff Riot. Something I found interesting, even comical to contemplate, while clicking around: "Earlier in the day, we joined one of the feeder marches, chanting, "Soldiers Turn Your Guns Around, Shoot The Profit System Down!" While march organizers argued with the cops about what street to take, we made speeches linking the war to inter-imperialist rivalry and calling on students, teachers, workers and soldiers to destroy this system with communist revolution." And no, that does not mean I'm a PLP supporter, nor am I urging U.S. troops to mass mutiny (any more than I'd urge pigs to fly). I mean, hey, can anybody seriously picture "Petrograd 1917" happening in today's America?
posted by davy at 9:01 PM PST - 48 comments

Peter Jennings Dies of lung cancer at 67.
posted by AMWKE at 8:54 PM PST - 166 comments

Malls of America - Gone (some of them) but not forgotten (well, maybe). Vintage photographs and postcards of malls of the 1960s and '70s. For more personal stories, check out Deadmalls.com.
posted by deborah at 8:35 PM PST - 19 comments


"A distressing example of the breakdown of moral and social values . . ." 62 of the 66 accused were convicted and sentenced in France's largest child sex abuse case to date. From 1999 to 2002, 45 children in Angers, aged 6 months to 12 years, were prostituted by their own families in exchange for as little as a carton of cigarettes. Most of the families were monitored by social workers and reports of abuse began in 1999, but an in-depth investigation did not begin until three years later.

Each next news article reveals more horrifying details. Three children were raped by over forty adults; parents would be ". . . smoking cigarettes in the next room while men raped their children and the children were crying". And ". . . one girl was forced to perform oral sex so often that she cannot eat in the company of adults".

It can take a lifetime to recover from being raped once. A nine-year-old who's been raped by forty people, including her parents and grandfather? I pray her psychologist is better than her family's social worker.
posted by schroedinger at 7:40 PM PST - 64 comments

Tristan da Cunha has just been assigned its first postcode by the Royal Mail. This makes it easier for the inhabitants of these remote chunks of rock to receive mail. Easier, but still not easy - to get there, packages must first make their way to Cape Town and then travel 2,800 miles by fishing boat.
posted by kcds at 7:24 PM PST - 17 comments

Before they were famous - six pages of childhood photos of celebrities.
posted by jonson at 6:57 PM PST - 57 comments

Iraqi Insurgents are running a different kind of guerrilla war. And at least one Iraqi sniper is apparently playing havoc with coalition troops.
posted by etaoin at 3:32 PM PST - 30 comments

Mind Reading.
posted by Citizen Premier at 2:34 PM PST - 14 comments

In a world... where the success of an industry depends upon the creative ability of a few, greatness must be recognized. Imagine... five of the top voice-over artists in our country all in one car! Dan LaFontaine's car!
posted by Robot Johnny at 1:56 PM PST - 26 comments

I was the Duke of Hazzard. I lived it. Jerry Rushing inspired the 1975 movie Moonrunners (or Los Contrabandistas), which features Robert Mitchum's son and Spanky "Our Gang" McFarland and was the ur-text for the Dukes of Hazzard. "The characters in the show, Cooter, Uncle Jesse, Boss Hogg, Bo and Luke, and of course Daisy Duke are all based on real people from Jerry’s life." Rushing's car, Traveler, was named after General Lee's horse. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 12:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Athanasius Kircher was the 17th century's Jesuit version of the übergeek. His scholarly attentions were drawn to egyptology, astronomy, magnetism, languages, optics, music, geology, mathematics and many many other pursuits. The "dude of wonders" invented novel machines such as the mathematical organ and magnetic clock, established one of the first museums, published about 40 academic works (with beautiful accompanying illustrations) and was globally revered as one of his time's greatest intellectuals. He is also the main link in the Voynich manuscript mystery. [MI]
posted by peacay at 11:24 AM PST - 12 comments

Who are YOU?
posted by Gyan at 11:14 AM PST - 47 comments

"The music to The Wicker Man is quite extraordinary. I think it is probably the best music I've ever heard in a film. All the songs are so totally different from each other and yet they sum up the atmosphere of the scenes perfectly. What Paul Giovanni achieved is quite amazing and absolutely beautiful." -- Christopher Lee, July 2002
posted by ford and the prefects at 10:50 AM PST - 23 comments

In the Rough ..."Man has evolved throughout the ages ... Relationships, unfortunately, have not. After being kicked out of his cave, Brog discovers that living a bachelor's life is not all tha it's cracked up to be" quicktime. smaller version here.
posted by crunchland at 7:43 AM PST - 17 comments

On this day in 1974 French stuntman Philippe Petit walked a tightrope strung between the still-unfinished (and largely unrented) towers of New York's World Trade Center. In the course of a single morning, the unexpected -- and illegal -- actions of a daring young Frenchman and a few of his confederates would change public opinion about the troubled towers, which were courting financial disaster and facing a barrage of architectural and social criticism (pdf).
posted by three blind mice at 6:23 AM PST - 17 comments

Fractal animation videos. Tune in. Turn on. Drop in on a dripping skirling-swirling pulsating orgy of self-transforming recursive math. Some with fractal music. (Non-embedded mpeg-1 and mpeg-2 files, like God intended.)
posted by loquacious at 3:34 AM PST - 15 comments

Robin Cook , MP for Livingstone, has died whilst hill-walking in his native scotland. His principled stand on the Iraq war led to his resignation from the house of commons on the eve of the war. The UK has lost one of its most respected politicians.
posted by handee at 3:27 AM PST - 47 comments

Ibrahim Ferrer has passed. The 78 year old vaulted from relative obscurity - outside of Cuba, at least - to the forefront of the badly and over-generally named "International" or "World Music" scenes when he came out of retirement to perform with a number of past colleagues (including Compay Segundo and Ruben Gonzales) as Buena Vista Social Club. A film, directed by Wim Wenders, and an album made with the help of guitarist Ry Cooder cemented his position as one of the sweetest voices in Cuba's rich musical history in the west and elsewhere. He was generally considered one of the greatest masters of the traditional son and bolero styles.
posted by luriete at 12:44 AM PST - 36 comments

BLIT ,
a short story by David Langford.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 12:35 AM PST - 29 comments

Norma Talmadge. Silent movie star, now largely forgotten.
posted by plep at 12:26 AM PST - 6 comments

August 6

Unwanted guests in Crawford? Cindy Sheehan, who lost her son in Iraq, and is now very active as a founder of Gold Star Families for Peace, is at Bush's ranch as he starts his 5-week vacation. "I want to ask George Bush: Why did my son die?" She's not leaving until she gets to meet with him personally, altho it won't be the first time she met the President. Former Senator Max Cleland-- who lost both legs and an arm during the Vietnam War, didn't have any luck when he tried to get through to Bush at Crawford last year. Will this grieving mother do any better?
posted by amberglow at 10:26 PM PST - 120 comments

What I'd Say to the Martians
posted by JeffL at 9:48 PM PST - 26 comments

Ecological impact of Space Shuttle launch exhaust. Aluminum oxide powder, hydrogen chloride, and of course, water vapor, which can form noctilucent clouds. The environmental impact is supposedly minimal.
posted by brownpau at 8:55 PM PST - 15 comments

Can A Little Lawsuit Shut Down A Big Tobacco Racket? This week, the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a free-market advocacy group in Washington, filed suit in federal court to challenge the constitutionality of the massive and fantastically lucrative 1998 Master Settlement Agreement -- otherwise known as the Tobacco Deal.

Cato's take. Background from Frontline.
posted by Kwantsar at 8:48 PM PST - 23 comments

"Justifying or glorifying terrorism anywhere" will become an offence in the UK under hastily-drafted new legislation. Will the police arrest historians who celebrate the French Resistance and the Warsaw Uprising, or Americans who claim that it's okay to bomb Cuban airliners? What form of words could you suggest for the legislation to use, that would define "terrorism" to include al-Qaeda and the pro-Aristide fighters in Haiti, but exclude the Miami-based ex-Cubans?
posted by cleardawn at 2:57 PM PST - 117 comments

Welcome to my Highspeed Photography Site. Not just cool photos, but insightful details of the technique required to take them. (some pages in german, most in english). via digg
posted by furtive at 2:51 PM PST - 29 comments

Tattooed pigs.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 2:46 PM PST - 23 comments

Flying Cats
posted by srboisvert at 2:05 PM PST - 32 comments

Cheney's Halliburton is Selling Iran Components and Technology for Nuclear Power Cheney and the Bush administration rattle sabers at Iran for working on nuclear reactors. Yet Halliburton is selling Iran nuclear components and technology. Using Cheney's rhetoric, this would seem treasonous.
posted by mk1gti at 9:30 AM PST - 116 comments

Stureplan - Stockholm's Social Diary goes a long way to moderate the image of egalitarian Scandinavia. This site, highlighting quasi-royalty and celebrities (and those who wish they were) in exclusive private parties, seems like a Nordic version of New York's upper east side than a open-to-all-social-democratic-paradise. What gives? (Via)
posted by dagny at 8:39 AM PST - 29 comments

I love obsessive fan sites, and they don't come much more obsessive than this one about Bewitched full of pointless, comprehensive lists about everything from costumes to ad agency clients. On a related note, if you ever wondered what happened to Darrin the first - the very unlucky Dick York - then wonder no more. There's also Paul Lynde's favorite dish and a list of his jokes from Celebrity Squares.
posted by dodgygeezer at 6:45 AM PST - 21 comments

Kurnik is a (free) online game site - bridge, chess, go, hex, that sort of thing - that's been established for years but only recently launched an English-language version. It seems notable among the many many many online game sites for lightweight, clean, ad-free design. The games are java-based.
posted by Wolfdog at 3:42 AM PST - 6 comments

PopExperiment
"Anyway, the idea behind this site is similar to stumble: provide links and representations to (of) artists that I love. To that end I've already started populating the music, photography, visual arts and motion arts sections with some art I hope you really enjoy (and real links to the amazing artists responsible)."
[And check: via via via]
posted by peacay at 2:14 AM PST - 2 comments

August 5

I Don't Like You In That Way is a celebrity mocking gossip blog written by the former head writer of TheSuperficial.com; very similar in style, layout & sense of humor. May not be everyone's cup of tea, but it frequently makes me laugh out loud.
posted by jonson at 10:21 PM PST - 22 comments

It has now been 60 years since the awesome terror of nuclear weapons was revealed to the world. Whether the decision to use such a fearsome weapon was right or wrong is still being debated. Much of that debate now centers around the intercepts of Japanese communications under the Ultra [British code name] or Magic [US code name] program and whether Japan was ready to surrender under acceptable terms. Some of these intercepts can be read here and here.
posted by publius at 10:11 PM PST - 53 comments

Found in translation: Much more than / Hip hop Chaucer, and it don't stop / Hip hop Aeschylus, and it don't stop / Hip hop Shakespeare, and it don't stop / Yeah [3.4MB .wmv], and it don't stop, and it don't quit.
posted by fatllama at 9:43 PM PST - 15 comments

The best Spider-Man story evar has super-apes and fruit pies. You can't ask for much more. [via]
posted by rhapsodie at 8:36 PM PST - 20 comments

Ever had one of those days when you want to look at web sites but don't know which ones you want to look at? A perl script on this page will show you a random web site. It's a great time-waster!
posted by clevershark at 8:34 PM PST - 19 comments

Mickey Mouse Meets the Air Pirates Funnies. The book on the ensuing legal fracas was previously discussed on Metafilter here, but now you can read the whole first issue as Dan O'Neill intended it. See also the Communique. Via BoingBoing
posted by Eothele at 5:21 PM PST - 8 comments

The only Known Venomous Lagomorph... ...the Cutting Hare of South Asia. Check out the tongue envenomation spurs in the photo. Very cool even for us non-biologists.
posted by whl at 3:24 PM PST - 38 comments

Lucid Dreams. Being able to remember and control your dreams. Also see this Ask Metafilter.
posted by Suparnova at 3:06 PM PST - 58 comments

"Heavy Metal Wonder Woman" [nsfw] With Wonder Woman being rumored to be in pre-production with Joss Wheadon at the helm, the character of Wonder Woman and Lynda Carter seem to be seeing a steady interest if not resurgence from feminist film installation artists and fans of the William Marston idealistic comic character.
posted by rabbitmoon at 2:51 PM PST - 47 comments

Avast! Pirates on the prowl in NYC. These folks had the same idea, but different costumes.
posted by Gamblor at 2:35 PM PST - 10 comments

Oh, there's already a website devoted to making fun of stupid gas station websites. Huh.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:18 PM PST - 13 comments

Build your own space station (requires printer, paper, scissors, glue and a lot of patience).
posted by Pendragon at 1:52 PM PST - 5 comments

Sometimes You Can't Fix You On Your Own. (Quicktime and Windows Media.) If there has ever been doubt about Coldplay's burning ambition to be U2, let it be put to rest.
posted by Saellys at 12:57 PM PST - 85 comments

Pamphlets for the G.I.s during WWII. There was a belief by many in the War Department that social discontent among enlisted personnel would foster problems at home after the war was over. A series of pamphlets was commissioned to help get their minds right. Titles included: What Is Propaganda?, How Far Should Government Control Radio?, Do You Want Your Wife to Work After the War?, and Our Russian Ally.
posted by caddis at 12:41 PM PST - 10 comments

Deep into Sleep. "While researchers probe sleep's functions, sleep itself is becoming a lost art." [Via Mind Hacks.]
posted by homunculus at 12:37 PM PST - 20 comments

Audrey Kawasaki paints pretty pictures of pretty girls. [note: linked pages sfw, but much stuff on site nsfw]
posted by 김치 at 12:27 PM PST - 24 comments

The Iraq Index is a statistical compilation of economic, public opinion, and security data. An extensive collection by the Brookings Institue of indicators outlining the security situation, the economy and quality of life, as well as polling and politics data. (One downside is that it is a pdf file). Also from the same source is a comparable compilation for Afghanistan
posted by forforf at 12:13 PM PST - 2 comments

Even a cat can look at a king...but... According to the Daily Texan when GWB arrived in Texas Wednesday, residents close to where the President was going to be landing were told not to look out their windows. Why? ....more inside...
posted by Dunvegan at 12:07 PM PST - 66 comments

Astronaut Steve Robinson took a picture of himself that Escher would've loved, when out fixing the Space Shuttle Discovery. Available in hi-res, too (not safe for dialup).
posted by cerebus19 at 11:35 AM PST - 67 comments

Ernst Haeckel: Die Radiolarien (1862) : a microscopic, single-celled organism, the radiolarian extrudes the silica it draws from seawater to forms a dazzling web of crystalline, concentric shells; even more amazing, each of the 5000 known species of radiolarian forms its own unique pattern. "Proteus" is a new documentary of a 19th century biologist/evolutionary theorist/artist's fascination with these creatures. (Oh, Haeckel is also the guy who coined "ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny". And he lied.)
posted by of strange foe at 11:19 AM PST - 14 comments

How to Recognize Plagiarism. (From Indiana University Bloomington.)
Here's some examples of malfeasance in case you, like me, flunked the test.
posted by DeepFriedTwinkies at 10:55 AM PST - 41 comments

Mind the bombs - Do your part in the war against terrorism. (Not that tasteless, though on second thought, I suppose it is.)
posted by mrgrimm at 10:44 AM PST - 11 comments

Feeding America: The Historic American Cookbook Project "...an online collection of some of the most important and influential American cookbooks from the late 18th to early 20th century." Includes scanned, searchable, and downloadable copies of such titles as "The Virginia Housewife, Or, Methodical Cook," "Practical Sanitary and Economic Cooking Adapted to Persons of Moderate and Small Means," and "Food and Cookery for the Sick and Convalescent."
posted by tpl1212 at 10:31 AM PST - 7 comments

On September 15, 1959, student Bill Thomas witnessed the bloody aftermath of a bomb going off at Poe Elementary School. "This was an extremely upsetting event for me and my fellow six-grade students, but no consideration was ever given to the treatment of our trauma. In fact, nothing much was even said about it when we returned to school the next day." Decades later, he deals with what happened by taking photographs of himself in which he's seen committing suicide in a variety of convoluted ways.
posted by iconomy at 10:26 AM PST - 25 comments

Bridges. Friday, er, Java, Fun
posted by solotoro at 10:09 AM PST - 10 comments

A Brief History of Game: A nine-part review of the major highlights in rpg history. Other interesting if generally unrelated pieces on the history of gaming, pen & paper or otherwise: "Where Have All the Demons Gone?", discussing the history of Magic the Gathering; A somewhat flippant piece by GameSpy; and some obligatory RPG theory regarding the historical popularity of various styles of RPG.
posted by voltairemodern at 9:16 AM PST - 32 comments

The Union Makes Us Strong. Articles on British trade union history.
posted by plep at 8:26 AM PST - 3 comments

Banksy and the barrier
posted by srboisvert at 5:27 AM PST - 44 comments

Electrical lighting conspiracy theories can be paranoid, downright bizarre, or actually pretty reasonable.
posted by nthdegx at 4:34 AM PST - 27 comments

"A Souter in Roberts clothing" was the accusation made by Ann Coulter in one of her recent screeds. Maybe so. In 1995, Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. worked behind the scenes for gay rights activists. His legal expertise helped them persuade the Supreme Court to issue a landmark 1996 ruling protecting people from discrimination because of their sexual orientation. A ruling Lamda called the "single most important positive ruling in the history of the gay rights movement." In the blistering dissent, Scalia, joined by Rehnquist and Thomas, said "Coloradans are entitled to be hostile toward homosexual conduct." Thanks to John G. Roberts, the U.S. Supreme court decided that no, Coloradans are not so entitled. The National Legal Foundation (supporting the Biblical foundations of America's Laws) called it "the worst decision in the history of the court." Will Robert's nomination now be opposed by the Christian Right? In any case, watching the GOP cat fight will be fun!
posted by three blind mice at 4:06 AM PST - 139 comments

It's Uncyclopedia, featuring articles on sports, geography, science, history, popular culture (may be NSFW), and a host of other topics. See also: Uncyclopedia's Wikipedia entry, Wikipedia's Uncyclopedia entry, this page of templates, and Uncyclopedia's Metafilter entry.
posted by alphanerd at 3:53 AM PST - 18 comments

PingMag is the name of a new art and design-focused online magazine from Japan. They have many interesting articles on art and design in Japan including an interview with ELM Design (on their work for Yamaha), Monolake talking about their network music projects, Eto Koichiro talking about some of his art/programming projects, a profile of Japanese production house Little More, and a lot more in both English and 日本語
posted by gen at 1:58 AM PST - 5 comments

August is National Sandwich Month and some people are dead serious about their love for the sandwich, keeping track of every one eaten this month (and for 2004 and 2003). Clearly, we could all be doing much more to celebrate and support the sandwich.
posted by mathowie at 12:44 AM PST - 23 comments

August 4

Every movie poster from every episode of every season of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Note: collection may not contain EVERY poster.
posted by jonson at 10:03 PM PST - 36 comments

KilroyWasHere.org -- Come for the kilroy, stay for the story upon story from a time when the U.S. really was fighting for democracy. (Links upon links too, if that's your thing.)
posted by If I Had An Anus at 9:03 PM PST - 9 comments

Dr. Macro's High Quality Movie Scans ... high quality scans of famous screen stars and their movies, mostly from the 1940's and earlier, as well as a collection of film clips and movie summaries from the golden age of Hollywood.
posted by crunchland at 8:59 PM PST - 15 comments

The Game? University of Central Florida instructor Jeff Wirth - an Interactive Theatre pioneer, author, and one time editor of the long defunct ITN resource - brings something like David Fincher's The Game to life. Interactive Theatre describes forms of theatre that directly involve audience members in the action, from plays like Tony and Tina's Wedding to kitschy dinner theatre like the Murder Mystery Players to the one actor/one audience member pieces of Cruel Theatre.
posted by Joey Michaels at 8:50 PM PST - 16 comments

The Doctor is in: David Tennant, the new Doctor Who (#10), has revealed his look to the world. No long scarf, cricket uniform, or leather jacket this time... instead, a brown pinstripe suit and grubby Converse. He calls it geek chic.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 8:40 PM PST - 52 comments

Source Code --ever wonder who it is feeding the media in DC? Meet "The 4 Horsemen", "The Übersource ", "The Troika ", and lower on the totempole, "Hill Dwellers" and "Ex-Bush Spokesbots".
posted by amberglow at 6:59 PM PST - 11 comments

Mega64! Some easily-amused folks with a video camera and a local public access TV channel have created the ultimate video game system. The Mega64 literally places you in the game. And by "the game" any game for any system that makes you look like a total jackass if you try to act it out, and by "you," I mean two unwilling playtesters.
Thrill to Solid Snake infiltrating a grocery store! Puzzle out where to fit a walking Tetris piece! Laugh as some bozo spits out coins while saying "Barf!"
While you're at it check out the Splinter Cell videos hosted off-site.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 6:58 PM PST - 11 comments

Classic FM Radio Analysis scans play lists from various FM radio stations and allows you to make queries such as how often was Beethoven's Symphony #9 played, what are the most popular pieces played, who are the most popular composers, etc.
posted by RonZ at 4:15 PM PST - 4 comments

Blogger Twins, and fellow MeFi members, camworld and mrbarrett, want to take part on TAR9. Help them get noticed by the casting directors of The Amazing Race, currently undergoing casting call review.
posted by riffola at 4:13 PM PST - 44 comments

Comedian Dane Cook's new CD Retaliation debuted this week at #4 on the Billboard 200 chart, which is the highest debut for a comedy album since Steve Martin's A Wild and Crazy Guy in 1978. One reason for this success has been his presence on MySpace.com, as well as his personal web page that is loaded with content (you can stream large chunks of his two albums, as well as watch a ton of video clips - make sure you watch the Shorties Watching Shorties clips near the end of his video's list). [more video].
posted by Quartermass at 4:07 PM PST - 23 comments

novak loses it some are guessing because the host had warned him he would be asked about the valerie wilson outing ...
posted by specialk420 at 3:43 PM PST - 96 comments

Who has the fish? Einstein logic puzzle. If I can do it, you guys can.
posted by swift at 3:22 PM PST - 53 comments

The Boardroom Bunch - web comic dedicated to the titans of american industry. (related )
posted by blue_beetle at 3:08 PM PST - 6 comments

Is there any purpose to the kind of manned space flights we seem to be concentrating on?
posted by pantsrobot at 2:44 PM PST - 48 comments

Goodbye to Kitty - from a book, via
posted by hardcode at 1:45 PM PST - 27 comments

The Latest in MegaChurches. I have never been to a big creepy megachurch. This is my first confession. I have never been to, say, Lakewood Church in Houston, the biggest glossiest megachurch of all, which just dumped a staggering $75 million to renovate the former stadium for the Houston Rockets and turn it into a massive pulsing swaying arm-raisin' eye-glazed weirdly repressed House o' Jesus. I have never been to World Changers in Georgia or New Birth Missionary Baptist in Texas or Calvary Chapel in Costa Mesa or the Potter's House in Dallas or the Phoenix First Assembly of God, et al., all of which claim well over 15,000 regional followers (some 20,000 or even 30,000) and most of which operate much more like careening multitentacled corporations than humble homes of spiritual connection and love. But, you know, quibbling.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 12:22 PM PST - 58 comments

She was, after all, a girl you could take anywhere. One minute she could be the slinkiest cat on the hot tin roof, wrapping her dancer’s body... around a client’s body in a hotel elevator. Then, when the door slid open, she’d look classic, like a wife even, on the arm of a Wall Street CEO or Asian electronics magnate.

Last week, she was busted.
posted by Kwantsar at 12:02 PM PST - 55 comments

Sam, the World's Ugliest Dog
posted by 김치 at 11:57 AM PST - 79 comments

Peekaboom! It's not Friday -- then again this isn't flash -- but it sure is fun. Partner with another anonymous player to identify pictures by gradually revealing them. The kicker is that as we play, the system gets smarter -- the goal is to teach computers how to identify photos the same way we can.
posted by o2b at 11:50 AM PST - 14 comments

The American Museum of Beat Art has a website with bios of some important figures of the Beat Generation and some interesting art. I liked the Joseph Ferris works. [Sadly, some of the interesting looking links do not appear to be working.]
posted by caddis at 9:22 AM PST - 3 comments

Romare Bearden was probably the least-known great American artist of the 20th century. A glance at the Google image search will give you an idea of his exciting colors, bold designs, and joyously crowded canvases; here's a picture of the artist with cat, a brief appreciation, a Derek Walcott poem ("How you have gotten it! It's all here, all right..."), and a bunch of reproductions. There are good introductions here and here; I saw the latter at Plep, which reminded me I'd been wanting to make a Bearden post for ages (there's a book based on the National Gallery exhibit). Enjoy!
posted by languagehat at 8:47 AM PST - 8 comments

First there was Santo and the Blue Demon, now a new star is born in the the world of Mexican wrestling. His name? El Serpento!
posted by kingmissile at 8:40 AM PST - 8 comments

Wayne's World (an unfortunate name for a great website) is "An On-line Textbook of Natural History." I went looking for information on Vanilla, which I knew is the only commercial food product of an orchid, but which I didn't know is hand-pollinated, and found information on so much more. There are several extensive courses available on basic biology and botany, a huge section on chemicals in plants and animals, and tons of fun stuff like "The Truth about Cauliflory" and "Bat-Pollinated Flowers Of The Calabash & Sausage Tree." The index is extensive and covers everything from "Absinthe: An Herb That May Have Poisoned Vincent van Gogh" to "Ziricote: Beautiful Caribbean Hardwood In The Borage Family."
posted by OmieWise at 7:16 AM PST - 10 comments

LifeHut How to do everything from mowing the lawn to being a cool parent.
posted by oissubke at 7:02 AM PST - 18 comments

I always thought Bruce Campbell would be perfect to play the guy from Doom. And yeah, Howie Long is a dead ringer for Duke Nukem. But looking at how much Mr. T looks like Barrett from Final Fantasy 7 and Winona Ryder looks like Vice from King of Fighters I have to wonder how much of this is on purpose? Of course there are the exceptions.
posted by Smedleyman at 6:59 AM PST - 20 comments

BBC News' wonderful In Pictures section, including Hiroshima: Now and Then, Space Shuttle Discovery in orbit, and readers' photos of Battersea Power Station.
posted by Mwongozi at 6:30 AM PST - 8 comments

Photobooth.net is dedicated to the old-school "dip and dunk" four-pose photobooth. See also the Photobooth Pool on Flickr.
posted by kmel at 5:51 AM PST - 4 comments

"Thinking of you. Not all the time, but you're in the rotation." Cyranet's greeting cards are a pleasant waste of 5 minutes.
posted by selfmedicating at 5:47 AM PST - 10 comments

~Balnea~ Virtual Museum of Sea Bathing and Seaside Tourism
This beautiful and comprehensive Italian site records the development of human association with the sea from the 18th to the 20th century. Art works, posters and photographs display the evolving nature of seaside architecture, fashion, lifesaving, cafes/amusements, sun protection, pavillions and more. There are even vintage essays and partially digitized books (some are in english) as well as beach tunes (midi files) for those so-inclined. [site map] via
posted by peacay at 5:43 AM PST - 3 comments

Page through the entire first quarto of Hamlet , or the second quarto of King Lear, or any one of dozens of other precious rare editions of Shakespeare, courtesy of the British Library. Clicking on a page brings up a bigger view of the page, which is handy for taking a closer look at lines like "To be or not to be, I, there's the point". There's also some brief background on the various editions.
posted by yankeefog at 2:47 AM PST - 21 comments

August 3

Murphy's Original Stupid Creatures are more than just sock monkeys. Browse stupid creature history, or make your own.
posted by drezdn at 11:11 PM PST - 10 comments

This is what you get when you cross an award winning actor, an award winning perfumer, and an award winning creative director (Jason Schell). May be NSFW in some offices, adjust volume where necessary.
posted by FlamingBore at 9:34 PM PST - 37 comments

FHM rips off Music Thing blog. Compare and contrast. Fair use or a plain old fashioned rip-off? You make the call. Seriously, how common is this kind of thing and is the net producing content to be repackaged and sold commercially without proper permission?
posted by skallas at 8:55 PM PST - 25 comments

Famous moustaches
posted by rocketman at 8:42 PM PST - 27 comments

Jackie Brenston , Ike Turner, Joe Hill Louis, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and of course Elvis all passed thur Sun Records in the 1950's. PBS American Masters Good Rockin' Tonight The Legacy of Sun Records has good music and history of the blues and rock and roll. Paul McCarty, Live and other preform the old tunes.
posted by bjgeiger at 7:37 PM PST - 24 comments


One man's crop blight is another man's delight. Also called corn smut, Ustilago maydis is a fungus that infects corn plants and is typically destroyed in the US. However, in some parts of the world, Cuitlacoche or huitlacoche is considered a fine delicacy. For over 100 years it has been used in science as a model for pathogenic development, but it is only recently that it has been deliberately cultivated for food in the US. Are you brave enough to eat it? Here are some recipes for you to try.
posted by hindmost at 6:14 PM PST - 32 comments

Fear up, pride and ego down... It was inside the sleeping bag that the 56-year-old detainee took his last breath through broken ribs, lying on the floor beneath a U.S. soldier in Interrogation Room 6 in the western Iraqi desert. Two days before, a secret CIA-sponsored group of Iraqi paramilitaries, working with Army interrogators, had beaten Mowhoush nearly senseless, using fists, a club and a rubber hose, according to classified documents.
posted by Shanachie at 3:29 PM PST - 119 comments

The Streets of Laredo: The Cowboy's Lament was originally written as the Irish drover balled Bard of Armaugh (or Armagh), which later mutated into A Handful of Laurel, about a young man dying of syphilis in a London hospital, musing back on his days in the alehouses and whorehouses. Immigrants settling in the Appalachians brought their own version, The Unfortunate Rake, sung as early as 1790, about a young soldier dying of mercury poisoning, a result of treatment for venereal disease, who requests a military funeral - a slight but important evolution from the previous version. The current lyrics are most popularly attributed to cowboy Frances Henry "Frank" Maynard, who copyrighted them in 1879. While various versions of the song were popular in the US before Maynard took pen to paper and needle to wax cylinder (under such titles as Locke Hospital, St. James Infirmary Blues, Tom Sherman's Bar and Way Down in Lodorra), his version is the one with which we are most familiar today.

beat the drum slowly, play the fife lowly / sound the death march as you carry me along / cover my body in sweet-smelling posies / for I'm the young (rake, soldier, man, girl, lass, etc) cut down in (his/her) prime (or and I know I've done wrong)

The song has been recorded by pretty much every country, western and folk-identified musical artist since recording music became practical, although the most popular versions must be those by Arlo Guthrie (who once said it was "the saddest song I know," and who sings it on his album Son of the Wind) and Johnny Cash (who added a few verses to his 1965 version, improving the song a bit and making it more emotionally complex). Roger McGuinn's creative commons-licensed version is one of my personal favorites, as is Bobby Sutliff's version.
posted by luriete at 3:24 PM PST - 26 comments


Have you ever thought your boss might be a sociopath? According to some, you just might be right. A recent film called The Corporation actually goes so far as to argue that American-style free markets select for sociopathic tendencies. While some on the left seem all too eager to chime in with their self-righteous “I told you sos,” others on the right dismiss all such notions to defend free markets with open contempt… Which is strange when you consider that free market theory owes its existence to Darwin’s theories of natural selection, which many on the right don't accept. Seriously--help me sort this out, or else I'm going to have to conclude we've all gone crazy.
posted by all-seeing eye dog at 2:41 PM PST - 86 comments

In the Czech Republic over the weekend a free and legal techno party was stormed by heavily-armed riot police. One person died and dozens of participants were injured. The unprecedented attack has been heavily condemned by the League of Human Rights and the Czech Shadow Minister claiming it was politically motivated. See also 1 and 2. Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek (Social Democrats, CSSD) defended the action stating: The core of the techno enthusiasts is made up of "obsessed people with anarchist proclivities and international links," who "provoke massive violent demonstrations, fuelled by alcohol and drugs, against the peaceful society".

Videos: 1 2 3 4 and 5

Photos: 1.
posted by urbanwhaleshark at 2:09 PM PST - 30 comments

The Internationale , written in 1871 by Eugene Pottier (lyrics) and P. Degeyter (music), has been (and will be) the theme of a variety of Marxist and non-Marxist socialist groups around the world. This Norwegian site catalogues a healthy sampling of MP3 versions of this stirring ballad; my personal favorite is Billy Bragg's [MP3, 8.9 MB]. But for the chuckles, nothing beats this [.wav] rousing folk version, complete with cartoonish accent.
posted by ford and the prefects at 1:52 PM PST - 25 comments

Scavengeroogle - a scavenger hunt using google maps. Theres even geography themed prizes.
posted by Suparnova at 1:22 PM PST - 4 comments

Work Well With Others or, how to power a matchstick plane with houseflies. Reports of success or failure are welcome.
posted by DrJohnEvans at 1:13 PM PST - 20 comments

A Brief History of Slime , or How The Current Wave Of Global Islamic Terrorism Was Precipitated By A B-Movie Actor.
posted by 31d1 at 12:54 PM PST - 56 comments

"People were tripping over each other, climbing over the seats to get to the exit." Warbaby posted a link on July 7 to an article by Lee Clark that said people don't panic in disasters. Survivors from Tuesday's Toronto plane crash give a different story. Here's one account: Ho said people at first were calm and lining up, but once fire from the back of the plane, "people were tripping over each other, climbing over the seats to get to the exit." He said a flight attendant told him to jump out the front door with no chute, but it was about a 12-fioot drop. He ran to a second door. It had a damaged chute, but he took it. "I jumped and fell onto some people," Ho said. "Some people broke their arms or legs."
posted by stevefromsparks at 12:26 PM PST - 42 comments

In the August edition of Outside Magazine, Tim Zimmerman chronicles the story of divers Deon Dreyer and Dave Shaw. Dreyer, a 20-year-old experienced diver, died in 1994 while exploring Bushman's Cave in Boesmansgat, South Africa, the third deepest cave in the world. In October 2004, Dave Shaw, while diving to the bottom of Bushman's Cave, discovered the body of Deon Dreyer and, tying a line to him, promised to recover the body for Dreyer's family. A few months later, in January 2005, Shaw died in the attempt, unintentionally filming his own death. Both bodies have since been recovered.
posted by Moral Animal at 12:21 PM PST - 20 comments

Do restaurant reviews leave out too many details for you to get a feel for a place? For the last year, a chowhound with the handle perceptor has been sharing beautiful pictorial restaurants reviews (mainly in L.A.), to the delight of many. Here they are: (* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *) [MI]
posted by 김치 at 11:19 AM PST - 41 comments

Kung Fu Science: The BBC News article claims that the site "is primarily aimed at 11 to 16-year-olds," but I refuse to let temporal adolescents have a corner on 25-year-old female PhD students doing physics and then breaking wood planks with their hands. [Flash; both the site and the videos take a while to load.]
posted by gramschmidt at 11:07 AM PST - 18 comments

Patent Room is a collection of early 20th Century industrial design culled from the archives of the U.S. Patent Office, featuring architecture, automobiles, toys, and trains.
posted by crunchland at 10:36 AM PST - 11 comments

I've Got Cats - (In the tradition of MeFi cat links since Day One) - Can his server withstand the attack?  
posted by spock at 10:18 AM PST - 5 comments

Jihad, terrorism and asylum - in rhyme and iambic pentameter (small QT movie, some profanity) A Middle-Eastern chef and a xenophobic Northern English cook argue about war, bombs and asylum seekers - in the kind of flowing verse one might expect from Shakespeare. It's from British indie director Sally Potter and quite apposite, representing the kind of debates which are going on following the London bombings.
posted by tobyslater at 10:17 AM PST - 6 comments

Cliptrip is a music video blog that has some great, mostly non-mainstream video's. Favourite videos include (Warning! Direct quicktime linkage!) Brother by the Organ (hooray for bands that sound like the Smiths!), Only from Nine Inch Nails, Tito's Way by The Juan Mclean and Tropical Ice-Land from the Fiery Furnaces. (via Chromewaves)
posted by Quartermass at 9:53 AM PST - 10 comments

Retarded people love Huey Lewis & the News.
posted by keswick at 9:50 AM PST - 80 comments

Free the Weather? On Slate, Timothy Noah explains how Santorum's National Weather Services Duties Act effectively gags NWS in private weather's favor. [more inside]
posted by brownpau at 9:45 AM PST - 17 comments

9 Anti-Porn Myths Debunked, a July entry on the porn-industry blog SugarBank, generated some pretty good debate on the subject of degradation. Comments have been closed, so now I'd like to read what you people think (yes, I'm a selfish, greedy prick). Yesterday, I was firmly in SugarBank's camp, but after reading this today, I'm not so sure. It's about porn, so maybe NSFW, but there's no dirty pictures or anything.
posted by If I Had An Anus at 9:42 AM PST - 103 comments

Ladies and gentlemen, I present the Nickelodeon hotel. I don't know whether or not to lament the state of affairs, or be happy that my kid gets to interact with the characters she has in her imagination. Not that this is anything new in Orlando, or anything....but I'm just astounded by the wholesale manipulation of children and their parental-annoyance-fueled buying power.
posted by taumeson at 9:03 AM PST - 18 comments

It's not enough that Bad Poetry exists. The internet is full of some of the Worst Verse you'll ever read. There are even sites dedicated to reviewing Really Bad poetry. Enjoy.
posted by seanyboy at 8:42 AM PST - 29 comments

Do you have a small one, a really mini organ? Attempts to make it bigger won't work, and could damage it. You aren't alone. Here is a collection of mini organ photos. Some people have some pretty bizarre obsessions.
posted by caddis at 7:54 AM PST - 27 comments

The Douglas David Duncan Archives at the University of Texas. Duncan took pictures all over the world, in several different genres. The main gallery is here. Some selections include: portraits of Picasso; War photographs from WWII, Korea and Vietnam; and the World of Islam.
posted by OmieWise at 6:02 AM PST - 8 comments

As of today, the German language has changed, ending a 10 year state of flux which has seen new spelling rules mixed with the old ones. Under the new system, "extremely long compound words have been broken up, comma rules have been simplified, and in many cases a double-S replaces the old letter sign for the sound, which resembles a capital B." But given the strong resistance to the new rules from some in the German community, it may be a little premature to add the old German language to to the list of lost languages (previously discußed here) just yet. Anyway, for Mefite linguaphiles interested in this significant and now seemingly permanent change to the German language, check out the German spelling reform timeline.
posted by Effigy2000 at 1:58 AM PST - 54 comments

The Mara Salvatrucha gang or MS-13 is an international street gang. Operation Community Shield spearheaded by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) division of the Dept. of Homeland Security has been arresting street gang members from gangs such as " Sure Inos (which seems to be spelled wrong and even Wiki knows it USA Today & Detroit Free Press); the 18th Street Gang; Latin Kings; the Mexican Mafia; Border Brothers; Brown Pride, Azian Pride;" etc. etc. (all you wanna know about gangs here or going way back - here) over the past few months and recently arrested 582 members of MS-13. So far, ICE has made 1,057 arrests as part of the sting. Rumor has it MS-13 linked with Al-Quedia to smuggle nukes into the US. C'mon, world net daily? The Dept. of Homeland Security (thru ICE) is using federal immigration databases coupled with the names of thousands of suspected gang members from state and local police departments to - at the very least - deport them. Is that ok? Under the new laws it seems legal. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff called the gangs "a threat to our homeland security and ... a very urgent law enforcement priority." Yet non-Hispanic whites apparently commit more than half of all violent crimes, but make up only one-quarter of the prison population. I see the need to stop MS-13 and other gangs with international ties as much as the El Rukins were, but they were stopped by the state and local police and the FBI. So is it smarter policing or does the new law enforcement model target 'foreigners' and have the laws been tailor-made to target ghetto and barrio youth? I don't know, but why when I read ICE investigations cheif Marcy Forman say: "We're just getting started" do I get an Einsatzgruppen chill?
posted by Smedleyman at 1:01 AM PST - 33 comments

Temptation Blocker So, have a major deadline looming or ripe opportunity closing and just don’t have time to waste playing Half Life 2 or checking Bloglines one last time? Well then, add Half Life 2 and Firefox to the list of programs you want to block in Temptation Blocker, set the timer for how long you want to block them and then hit the “Get Work Done!” button. [Windows freeware]
posted by srboisvert at 12:28 AM PST - 25 comments

It turns out that those boys who were hanged in Iran may not have been quite so innocent after all. [original post]
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 12:23 AM PST - 44 comments

W. M. D.'s? There's been a lot of talk going on about bacteria infections in Iraq. Is it just common bacteria, or is the ground spoiled?
posted by Balisong at 12:21 AM PST - 12 comments

Ry Cooder's Ry Cooder's new album Chávez Ravine captures the world of the vibrant Chicano community that was bulldozed in the 1950's to build Dodger Stadium. Don Normark's book Chavez Ravine: 1949 provides more background on the place that was once a "poor man’s Shangri-la." of "wild roses, tin roofs, and wandering goats" where life "was lived fully, openly, and joyfully" before it was destroyed.
posted by robliberal at 12:08 AM PST - 19 comments

August 2

Wikimania begins on wednesday (in Germany). Unless you're there, you won't be able to hear the presentations on getting wikipedia into africa, a timeline with all of human history on it, or the intersect of art and science, but the media competion nominees are online. Check out the animations.
posted by Tlogmer at 10:43 PM PST - 9 comments

Ghost Cycle is a group in Seattle raising awareness for bike safety by displaying whited-out old bikes in places where cars have hit cyclists. They've also got an ingenious use of Google Maps to show you all the spots where accidents have been reported and where they've placed a ghost cycle, like this one. They also compile statistics on their reports ("1 in 5 accidents were hit and runs").
posted by mathowie at 10:00 PM PST - 58 comments

Mr. Fastfinger cuts heads with the devil (whos on accordian) and allows you to take part in the fun. Practice with the master for some serious keyboard riffage.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 9:08 PM PST - 11 comments

The Williamson Tunnels "The explanation most commonly offered [for the construction of the tunnels] is that having risen from humble beginnings, the rich retired merchant was touched by the poverty which pervaded the Edge Hill district and offered construction labour to the unemployed as a gesture of generosity"
posted by dhruva at 7:21 PM PST - 10 comments

mooncruise a photography magazine that doubles as a style publication.
posted by Thayer-P at 5:24 PM PST - 12 comments


Wireless bluetooth headset. Now you can listen to your tunes wireless and with oddly colored teeth! Bonuses including pushing your ears to change songs, like that guy in Empire Strikes Back.
posted by Bugbread at 4:58 PM PST - 14 comments


Newsweek delivers a chilling tale of non-rural, non-gays -- affluent suburbia (the horrors!) doing methamphetamine. Not as sexy, or yuppie, as its cocaine counterpart, it leads to poor oral hygiene and super-AIDS myths. Some surprisingly good Wikipedia articles appeared (Crystal and Sex and Meth). Even the more drug liberal Viceland sums up the sentiment about meth, "Speed is the bastard child of the drug family, cocaine’s ugly retarded stepbrother."
posted by geoff. at 1:53 PM PST - 122 comments

Passenger plane on fire at Toronto airport. About 200 people on board.
posted by ori at 1:43 PM PST - 56 comments

Is Mac OS X Becoming Crufty? I definitely think so.
posted by nthdegx at 11:05 AM PST - 55 comments

The main reason it was classified was...because of the horror, the devastation. US military crews and Japanese newsreel teams shot color and black & white footage of Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the atomic bombs were dropped. The newsreel footage was suppressed for 25 years; the US military footage was hidden until the early 1980s, and has never been fully aired. Some of the newsreel footage "might have disappeared forever if the Japanese filmmakers had not hidden one print from the Americans in a ceiling." This August 6 and 7 the Sundance channel is showing Original Child Bomb (review, QuickTime trailer), a documentary that combines the newsreel and military footage. The title is inspired by Thomas Merton's poem. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 11:04 AM PST - 54 comments

White plastic chairs - Jens Thiel blogs his research of the ubiquitous chair we all love to hate for an upcoming monobloc monograph and museum exhibition. The first chair emerged midcentury, devil spawn of a noble heritage. Today, some fear the monobloc population rivals or exceeds that of humans. Some view the chair as art, others see their place in history, but I agree with the wag who dubs them tupperware containers for lard butts.
posted by madamjujujive at 10:18 AM PST - 20 comments

Bush comes out in favor of teaching "intelligent design" alongside evolution in American schools. Is this the latest evidence of the White House willing to champion worthy but controversial ideas that have been sidelined by liberal bias, or strictly from Paul Krugman's theoretical headline, "Shape of Earth: Views Differ"? [Meanwhile, elsewhere in the Lone Star State, Texas educators ignite brouhaha by adding Bible study to the public-school curriculum].
posted by digaman at 10:15 AM PST - 343 comments

The Guaman Poma Website. Felipe Guaman Poma's El primer nueva coronica y buen gobierno (New Chronicle and Good Government) is one of the most remarkable manuscripts of the seventeenth century. Written by a native Peruvian, in the form of a 1200-page 'letter' to King Philip III of Spain, it provides a richly detailed account of Inca society before and after the Spanish conquest. Forgotten for three centuries, it was rediscovered in 1908 in the Royal Library, Copenhagen, which has now published a full digital facsimile online. The illustrations are extraordinary: glimpses of the abuse of colonial power ('Recite the doctrine, Indian troublemaker! Right now!') alongside gentler scenes of agriculture and everyday life ('Chew this coca, sister'). Scholarly articles help to set the manuscript in context. Browse and enjoy.
posted by verstegan at 9:39 AM PST - 7 comments

Microsoft Start (version 3) is the Web 2.0 application we've all been waiting for. Obviously, it was created by Microsoft. Search Engine and Syndication from one easily configurable screen. In the future, everyone will have this as their home page.
posted by seanyboy at 8:23 AM PST - 78 comments

Sheikh Khalid Yasin grew up as a Christian in the United States but converted to Islam under the influence of Malcolm X. Last week he was interviewed (Video) by Australia's 60 Minutes. Yasin's claims—Muslims should not attend university because it's a "gateway for deviation", homosexuality is punishable by death, and Muslims cannot truly befriend non-Muslims—have caused controversy among LGBT groups & moderate Muslims, yet despite his naysayers, Yasin does not lack for a following in Australia, and is frequently honored as a guest speaker & VIP around the world. The LA Times has more on US-born extremists.
posted by jenleigh at 8:20 AM PST - 17 comments

Mouse? Trackball? One button? Two? Now, thanks to Apple, you can have all four.
posted by Mwongozi at 7:21 AM PST - 141 comments

"I've never believed, for a moment, that atheists have all the answers. Just that they pose better questions." This attack (read the response), by the Australian Atheist society on Phillip Adams, is a good introduction to the Australian writer and broadcaster who presents probably the best, most thoughtful hour of radio on the planet. Now ABC National's "Late Night Live" is online, and podcast to the world. Give it a try, you absolutely don't have to be Australian to find it worthwhile.
posted by grahamwell at 7:17 AM PST - 33 comments

Time commenting could be time coding. Day in, day out, you pull off star moves: gnarly algorithms, wicked refactorings, stunning optimizations. Why should you stop and explain? Yes, you've got plodders on your team, but hey — youAreAStar and yourTimeIsExpensive. Time spent explaining, documenting, commenting — dude! — that's time you could be using to crank out yet more mind-altering code. Welcome The Commentator.
posted by Lectrick at 7:05 AM PST - 24 comments

Phutball (Rules, Java Applet), aka Philosophers' Football or ConwayGo is a deceptively simple 2-player game you can play on a Go board, or any rectangular grid. (It may be simple, but finding the right move is [PDF] NP Complete.)
posted by Wolfdog at 5:39 AM PST - 7 comments

ChessRogue = Chess + Rogue. (Open source, versions available for Linux and Windows.)

This console-based game takes the pieces of chess and puts them into a Roguelike environment. You start out with a weakened King who can only move and capture horizontally and vertically, in a randomized board full of multi-directional Pawns. As you capture more pieces, the king slowly gains additional powers, like diagonal capture and movement, Knight jumping, and eventually even Rook movement, among others. The opposition gets tougher too, until eventually the entire selection of pieces is out to get you.
Originally created for a three-day programming challenge on rec.games.roguelike.development, it's surprisingly cool, and works rather better than you might expect. It's useful as a break between Nethack fatalities.
posted by JHarris at 4:43 AM PST - 19 comments

The Gaydar test is simple. We'll show you pairs of guys and girls. See if you can recognize who's gay.
posted by three blind mice at 3:32 AM PST - 95 comments

The Art of Fuko Ueda From bighorn sheep to pet turtles to musical instruments, these paintings depict a bizarre and beautiful world filled with strange creatures.
posted by mayfly wake at 12:07 AM PST - 11 comments

August 1

Is there a Mogan Dovid in the Great in the Great Seal of the United States? It may simply be a pleasing arrangement, but some insist that it's George Washington's tribute to Haym Solomon(Salomon), the man who fueled the first American war machine.
posted by Citizen Premier at 11:03 PM PST - 18 comments

200 amazing secrets! Well, maybe not so secret to some but there are some darn helpful tips here! seen at presurfer
posted by Lynsey at 10:58 PM PST - 45 comments

What happened to the black power movement? Has it turned it's attention to such pressing matters as teaching the black man how to claim, tame and train the blackwoman, rescue her from lesbian feminist witchcraft and mocking her for dying her hair piss yellow?

Let the gender war begin! (via Memepool.)
posted by PeterMcDermott at 10:36 PM PST - 22 comments

Program For Escaped Extra People :: internet art and storytelling, using popcicle sticks...
posted by anastasiav at 9:17 PM PST - 7 comments

The Rainmaker
After three long years of drought, a desperate San Diego City council, sought out a man who had been creating rain from Central America to the Yukon, a rainmaker who could bring clouds, fill dams and douse fires. For $10,000, Charles Hatfield agreed to make rain. Soon after, on January 5, 1916, it started raining and raining...and raining. So much water fell from the sky that two dams overflowed. One dam broke, unleashing floods and devastation. Instead of gratitude, the city council threatened to sue Hatfield who in the end was saved by a court ruling that deemed rain to be "an act of God."
Hatfield claimed to have invented a chemical formula to summon clouds and was credited with over 500 successes. He took his rain-making secrets to the grave. Hollywood, of course, produced a movie.
posted by vacapinta at 8:56 PM PST - 13 comments

Some preserved animals. The Museum Adolphi Friderici has a catalogue in progress of the King Adolf Fredrik and Queen Lovisa collections. The collections apparently formed the basis for Carl Linnaeus's knowledge of animals.
posted by tellurian at 8:48 PM PST - 2 comments

Re: Take Back Mefi. Together for the very first time: 500 BC - First joke. 868 AD - First printed (dated) book. 1024 - First paper bank note. 1781 - First comic book. 1817 - First bike. 1840 - First stamp. 1876 - First novel ever written on a typewriter. 1880 - First Hello. 1895 - First X-ray. 1893 - First license plate. 1929 - First Oscar winners. 1936 - First true TV Dinner. 1946 - First Bikini. (More)
posted by growabrain at 8:44 PM PST - 19 comments

As you're reading this, Grand Master Susan Polgar is on her way to breaking the Guinness World Record for playing simultaneous games of chess. She began at 10 a.m. today playing over 300 opponents. Going from board to board, by 5 p.m. she had already walked 5 miles. Polgar, with a fascinating backstory, broke the glass ceiling of male-dominated international chess in 1990 and cleared the way for her sister Judit, an even stronger player. As of early tonight, Susan had yet to lose a single game (she must win at lest 80% of them), but acknowledged that some players might get lucky: "At least I will make their day."
posted by soyjoy at 8:16 PM PST - 20 comments

Yale University's Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library's online collection of digital images - over 90,000 of them. A vast labyrinth of high resolution digital images and photo negatives from thousands of rare books and manuscripts. Search by keyword to access scans sorted by category. Find one you like and click on the call number to bring up all images from that title. Searching for "illustrations" brings up 31 pages of scans from hundreds of titles. Examine 16th century mechanical illustrations by Georg Agricola, two full pages of photo negatives from William Blake's Jerusalem, a collection of artwork demonstrating knightly protocol ("medieval" is another keyword search yielding a bonanza of good stuff), and so much more. The interface leaves something to be desired but the sheer amount of works available for viewing makes it all worth it.
posted by LeeJay at 8:08 PM PST - 12 comments


Bush Flips Out. Or does he? Debate is raging throughout the various interweb cliques over whether or not Bush gave reporters the finger. Even Jay Leno did a monolouge on it. But did Bush really flip reporters the bird? Possibly. After all, it's not the first time he's done it. Or was whatever it was he was doing with his hand simply some sort of innocuous gesture? Metafilter decides, inside.
posted by Effigy2000 at 7:08 PM PST - 55 comments

Hu is the new leader of China. George: That's what I want to know. Condi: That's what I'm telling you. George: That's what I'm asking you. Who is the new leader of China?
posted by caddis at 6:47 PM PST - 18 comments

Infinite Flickr--The Movie I find Flickr frighteningly fascinating; for fun, for friends, for fireworks, forever! Okay, enough alliteration, time for some caveats. Most movies made .mp4's dammit, what's wrong with me? for which you might need Quicktime 7 (preview version for Windows users found here). The primary link site is Geocities. via Videocrab I couldn't resist.
posted by WolfDaddy at 6:27 PM PST - 10 comments

The Grande Vista Sanitarium (also known as the Belgum Sanitarium after its founder) has been in ruins for decades, Dr. Belgum having himself become a recluse after working so long in that isolated location. The East Bay Regional Park District, the site's owner since the 1970's, fails to mention the sanitarium in its online park history. InfoWorld columnist and mountain biker Chad Dickerson was the first to document these ruins on the web, and his #1 Google ranking turned him into a de facto authority. He uses the experience to kick off a meditation on how "citizen-journalists" might also become citizen-historians.
posted by expialidocious at 6:12 PM PST - 9 comments

Portable parking spaces are the mind-bending Atomic-age outcome of centuries of humankind's best technology: they enable a bike to occupy the same perimeter as a car. They're arts and crafts, they're couture, they're vehicles of dissent [Flash, contains photos, project info, instructions on building your own PPS]. See the movie [11MB QuickTime]. A different take on the concept.
posted by Mo Nickels at 6:05 PM PST - 52 comments

Gematria! Mentioned in this post in the context of a "good or evil" algorithm, gematria (גימטריה) is actually Jewish numerology, assigning values to the letters of the Hebrew alphabet and establishing mystical correspondences. It's basic to kabbalistic works like the Zohar, and you can get detailed analysis here. But we both know what you really want to do is plug words into a text box and get the result instantly, right? Here you go. And to start you off, METAFILTER = 299 [מטאילטר] according to the traditional system; according to The Gematria of Nothing, it's 31. Take your pick.
posted by languagehat at 5:57 PM PST - 13 comments

Leave it To Bush, Episode 3 - also, Episode 1 and Episode 2 [via]
posted by aiko at 5:40 PM PST - 22 comments

Still searching for the best of the web?
Looking for that killer site to win a mini-contest?
"Mangle is the only random link finder that I know of that uses the Google Web API."
There's even a Firefox browser extension.
posted by jaronson at 5:32 PM PST - 7 comments

Virtual Reality tour of Hull - Because It's never Dull In Hull !
posted by sgt.serenity at 3:30 PM PST - 33 comments

Useful Reference for the Gardener or those who just want to learn more about the plants around them: for example, calendula, which yellow flower is seeding all over my yard. Once you've learned how to grow it, you can visit Mrs. Grieve's Modern Herbal, which will tell you what to do with your harvest. Don't forget to check the handy Index of Poisons before you move on to the recipes.
posted by mygothlaundry at 3:14 PM PST - 5 comments

"Just about anything goes in contemporary cinema and no one bothers too much with what actually took place in the past." The World Socialist Web Site's movie review archive provides a different take on film, both Hollywood and international.
posted by goatdog at 3:10 PM PST - 27 comments

Cambridge in Colour ... long exposures during twilight or moonlit conditions can produce other-worldly images. Be sure to check out the digital photo tutorials, too.
posted by crunchland at 3:07 PM PST - 35 comments

Gary Skoien terminated for putting a bounty on Da Mayor's head Skoien was fired from his high powered day job at Prime Group by his boss - a Daley democrat apparently - for putting a $10K bounty on Mayor Daley for information leading to his arrest. Doug Ibendahl, founder and coordinator of the Republican Young Professionals, said the bounty is unprofessional and Skoien should be removed as heaqd of the GOP in Cook County. Yeah, but fired? Prime Group CEO Michael Reschke said Friday that Skoien fatally blunted his effectiveness in the company and that the Daley administration did not influence his firing. "Gary positioned himself where he can no longer be an effective executive officer of our company," said Reschke, who has made political contributions mostly to Democrats, including at least $2,000 to Daley, but also to a few Republicans, including at least $250 to Skoien. Truly, Chicago is not the most corrupt American city. It's the most theatrically corrupt.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:03 PM PST - 38 comments

The New Alchemy Institute spent about 30 years studying how living systems can be designed in order to help preserve the environment. They studied agriculture, aquaculture, and built bioshelters, called arks, that integrated greenhouses and living spaces. A hallmark of the NAI approach was to use and trap energy produced by nature, rather than building greenhouses that required electricity, hence, compost heated greenhouses. Here's an article from 1978 about the NAI at the Alicia Patterson Foundation, and one from a 1989 Whole Earth Review. In 1981 John Todd, one of the principles in NAI, founded Ocean Arks International in order to explore the issue of ecological water treatment. His concept of water treatment, a constructed wetland, or living machine, developed directly from work on the arks at NAI. Here is more on John Todd and NAI, and here is an interview with his wife, Nancy Jack Todd, and him. Here's a link to a recent CS Monitor review of the new Nancy Jack Todd book. Post inspired by my love of NAI and my current reading of Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars Trilogy.
posted by OmieWise at 1:56 PM PST - 7 comments

"I am still / The black swan of trespass on alien waters." Ernest Lalor Malley (1918-1943). With the posthumous publication of such poems as "Dürer: Innsbruck, 1495" and "Petit Testament" in the journal Angry Penguins, Ern Malley was championed as the new voice of modern Australian poetry. The resulting scandal and obscenity trial would change poetry and literary theory forever. Plus, the ABC's documentary, The Ern Malley Story (listen).
posted by steef at 1:11 PM PST - 6 comments

Below Code. Comatonse Records has been around for a little over 10 years, and to celebrate, the owner, Terre Thaemlitz, put out a free best-of CD. The physical copies are all long-gone, but it's available for download (along with a bonus track that didn't fit on the original disc). Most of the stuff is relatively noisy (and some found sound stuff), but there's some cool electronic type pieces, rock and pop songs and solo piano pieces as well. Also of note is his own personal site, which has links to a lot of cool essays, typically about gender issues and music. (There's also links to images of graphical scores to some of his music.) [Poking around these sites are pretty much NSFW -- the only explicitly NSFW links are on "his own personal site" and "music", but there's quite a few naked people and suchlike around, including on one of the postcards that make up the main link, so, yeah -- take care!]
posted by Rev. Syung Myung Me at 1:08 PM PST - 4 comments

Netlag [15mb Quicktime]
posted by event at 1:04 PM PST - 10 comments


"Bay Area photographer Larry Sultan's The Valley series focuses on the San Fernando Valley, where he grew up, and addresses the use of ordinary homes as sets for pornographic films." [most links, particularly the last four, are NSFW]
posted by the_bone at 12:23 PM PST - 6 comments

Australian scientist Cameron Jones puts nanocrystals on the bottom of his CDs. And prints fractals on them. And grows bacteria, yeasts, and fungi on them. What's perhaps the most surprising about this is that when these CDs are actually played, they sound pretty cool. More details can be found here and here. [Last four links are MP3, MP3, PDF, and PDF, respectively.]
posted by Johnny Assay at 11:45 AM PST - 4 comments

Build your own brick oven.
posted by 김치 at 11:45 AM PST - 16 comments

OpenTable, a free online restaurant reservation system in use at over 3,300 restaurants throughout the US and UK. [via / mentioned]
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 11:39 AM PST - 11 comments


2005 Bulwer-Lytton winners announced! As he stared at her ample bosom, he daydreamed...

Thus begins the winner of the 2005 Bulwer-Lytton bad writing contest. The winning entry was written by Dan McKay, a Microsoft analyst from Fargo, ND.

One of my personal favorites received The Grand Panjandrum's Special Award: India, which hangs like a wet washcloth from the towel rack of Asia, presented itself to Tex as he landed in Delhi (or was it Bombay?), as if it mattered because Tex finally had an idea to make his mark and fortune and that idea was a chain of steak houses to serve the millions and he wondered, as he deplaned down the steep, shiny, steel steps, why no one had thought of it before.
Previous year's winners MF linked here, here, here, here, and, of course, here. Is this a record? A sextuple post?
posted by jasper411 at 10:54 AM PST - 17 comments

Rafael Palmeiro suspended for steroid use by Major League Baseball The first big name MLB player to be suspended for violating the leagues steriod policy testified to Congress about use of the drug in baseball after being named a user in Jose Canseco's book. "Good morning, Mr. Chairman and members of the committee. My name is Rafael Palmeiro and I am a professional baseball player. I'll be brief in my remarks today. Let me start by telling you this: I have never used steroids. Period. I don't know how to say it any more clearly than that. Never. The reference to me in Mr. Canseco's book is absolutely false. I am against the use of steroids. I don't think athletes should use steroids and I don't think our kids should use them. That point of view is one, unfortunately, that is not shared by our former colleague, Jose Canseco. Mr. Canseco is an unashamed advocate for increased steroid use by all athletes."
posted by batou_ at 10:53 AM PST - 61 comments

Dead Games Tell No Tales Not every video game makes it to the store. Sometimes it's because a company is wary of unleashing a new character property on the world, but other times it's because the publisher overworked the game's development staff to the point of exhaustion. Occasionally a game heavily infringes on a more popular game, leading to a lawsuit. Worst of all is when company politics kills a promising project. Failing hardware never helped anybody either. On the other hand, sometimes there is no reason at all why finished video games are sent to the wastebasket instead of the retail shelf.
posted by Servo5678 at 10:28 AM PST - 15 comments

The London Necropolis Railway During the first half of the 19th century, London's population more than doubled and the number of London corpses requiring disposal was growing almost as fast. Cemetery space in the city had failed to keep pace with this growth, and so the vast new Brookwood Cemetery - the London Necropolis - was built in Surrey. Brookwood was the largest burial ground in the world when it was opened in 1854 by the London Necropolis & National Mausoleum Company. To get there, the deceased and their mourners - segregated by class - could catch a train from Westminster. The Necropolis Railway survived until World War 2, when it was heavily damaged. The railway was subsequently closed as motorised hearses became more popular. See also: Also: a six part Fortean Times article extracted from Google's cache [1 2 3 4 5 6]
posted by carter at 9:20 AM PST - 14 comments

Urban Dead is a browser-based, grid-mapped multi-player game where you play the survivor or victim of a zombie outbreak in a quarantined city centre. Tired of playing a pseudo-hero in a fantasy Kingdom of Loathing? Play a scientist, soldier, or ordinary civilian in a modern city, and try to avoid being infected. Or skip the "avoid" phase, and just play a zombie.
posted by CrunchyFrog at 9:15 AM PST - 33 comments

It is the dead of winter at the bottom of the Earth.
Therefore, it's a great day for some lucky intrepid foolhardy souls to join The 300 Club! Those wishing to join in the future are advised to hurry, though.
posted by yhbc at 8:45 AM PST - 7 comments

Zombie flash mob in San Fransisco. Related blog entry and appropriate domain. [more inside]
posted by fatllama at 8:42 AM PST - 93 comments

Find the Landmark: A Google Maps Game
posted by Vidiot at 8:28 AM PST - 9 comments

Bush to Senate: Go to Hell. As expected, President Bush bypassed the confirmation process and made a recess appointment to elevate John Bolton to the post of US ambassador to the United Nations, brushing off what he calls "partisan delaying tactics by a handful of senators." Bolton was previously discussed on MeFi here.
posted by digaman at 8:19 AM PST - 213 comments

On mission along the border of Chad and Darfur, Human Rights Watch researchers gave children notebooks and crayons to keep them occupied while they spoke with the children's parents. Without any instruction or guidance, the children drew scenes from their experiences of the war in Darfur. Here are those drawings.
posted by ewagoner at 8:18 AM PST - 16 comments

Aurora (Northern/Southern Lights) are one of the most beautiful phenomena of nature. They are normally reserved for those who live nearer the polar latitudes. But occasionally, a massive solar X-Flare (animated) occurs when the "gun barrel" is pointed directly at earth. When that occurs, incredible aurora can be visible as far south as the the Arizona (N. Hemisphere) or as far north as New Zealand and Southern Australia (S. Hemisphere). (Another excellent gallery from May 1, 2005.) We have a good chance for such an event in coming days: Sunspot group 792 has a complicated magnetic field that harbors energy for powerful X-class solar flares. The chance of an Earth-directed explosion is increasing as the sun's rotation turns the active region more and more to face our planet. Stay tuned to spaceweather.com and monitor auroral activity or the latest solar events. See also: How to Find a Photograph Aurora.
posted by spock at 7:49 AM PST - 14 comments

So bad it's good, the Governator's 1985 film Commando was not going to win any Oscars® that's for sure. But at least it spawned a page of tortuous songs written by fans. Coral cached in case it dies, obligatory YTMD link.
posted by bdave at 7:12 AM PST - 19 comments



Do it fast or do it slow, but the lips must touch the toe.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 5:33 AM PST - 12 comments

Ever wonder what your browser is really like? Does it lurk in the shadows of the local pub or pool hall? Does it give too many 404s then it gives really cool websites? Look no further, introducing BrowserSpy, all the scoop you need to know but were afraid to ask.
posted by wheelieman at 5:25 AM PST - 2 comments

Watching Grass Grow is an appropriate activity now that the Dog Days of summer are upon us. For those who are watching their grass lawns wilt and turn brown in the hot weather, there's hope that it will recover as pictorially documented on this site.
posted by RonZ at 5:24 AM PST - 4 comments

Don Justo's self built Cathedral This is no "model" cathedral and he is neither a qualified architect, nor engineer, nor bricklayer -- he is a farmer, ex monk and his vision. "metaphoric learnings for contemporary alternative initiatives"
posted by adamvasco at 5:07 AM PST - 10 comments

Mingering Mike is the soul superstar you've never heard of.
posted by dodgygeezer at 4:29 AM PST - 10 comments

The Maunsell Sea Forts: During the Second World War, three anti-aircraft forts were built in 1941-42 to protect the Thames Estuary, designed by Mr. G. A. Maunsell.
posted by dhruva at 3:21 AM PST - 11 comments

"Ping-Pong Remix is the project in which Gastón Caba offers his Ping Pong characters in order to be recreated by some of his favourites illustrators." {via Art Dorks}
posted by dobbs at 12:49 AM PST - 3 comments

Sinister Forces: A Grimoire of American Political Witchcraft is the 3 volume culmination of author Peter Levenda's 25 years of research into the strange and bizarre undercurrents of American political, cultural and religious history. In his previous effort, Levinda focused on the occult roots of Nazism in an utterly fascinating and unerving book called Unholy Alliance which is discussed in this interview. A radio interview with Levinda is available here.
posted by thedailygrowl at 12:46 AM PST - 15 comments

Next to last words from Columbia reentry, at 9 seconds into this -- wma (windows media audio) file at the first link -- very brief. listen to the audio link, first -- just twelve or so seconds long -- and give your brain the chance to hear what it hears. then, see what nasa made of it in the transcript. this and much more can be found at chris valentine's website. the particular page which he discusses this audio file is here but don't miss the movies at his home page. I can agree with Chris Valentine (whose movies are at the same site and much worth watching) that NASA may honestly not hear what he heard -- and I hear -- in this bit of audio. But, as I listen to and watch NASA TV live right now, I notice that every time we start to hear anything at all revealing of plain old humor, or comments about having to reboot Windows again or power cycle when shutdown won't work, or much else, Houston intervenes with "hot mike" and the sound goes away for a while. They micromanage what we get to hear. Valentine's movies have far better video than we see live from NASA too.
posted by hank at 12:11 AM PST - 44 comments

Cornershop's "Brimful of Asha" and Panjabi MC's collaboration with Jay-Z don't mark Desi's lone inroads into mainstream European and North American culture. The creative hybridizaton might not be widespread, but the impact is felt well beyond pop music, from examples that often range from the comedic to the dramatic to the controversial, giving a glimpse into the ongoing conversation between widely disparate cultures and traditions, going beyond convenient media stereotypes.
posted by Rothko at 12:08 AM PST - 5 comments