August 2009 Archives

August 31

At dawn on September 1, 1939, the German Luftwaffe began the indiscriminate bombing of the Polish town of Wieluń and a German battleship, the SMS Schleswig-Holstein, shattered the dawn breaking over the Westerplatte by unleashing a barrage of 280mm and 170mm shells at a Polish fort. At Mokra, the Polish Calvary staved off two Panzer Divisions. A day of commemorations has begun in Poland to mark the 70th anniversary of the outbreak of World War II. [more inside]
posted by shoesfullofdust at 10:20 PM PST - 61 comments

Damien Walters and Tim "Livewire" Shieff: Choose Your Own Adventure. (previously)

Related to (and probably a viral vid-series for) their new-ish YouTube show, The Walters & Shieff Show -- ep1, ep2, ep3, & ep4. [more inside]
posted by LordSludge at 8:41 PM PST - 7 comments

The child you saved by adopting him might just save you in return. A quiet first-person story of how a married guy became a single dad to an adopted son - the wife moved on, but the boy remained. (SLYahooV)
posted by micketymoc at 8:39 PM PST - 5 comments

Investigating Bellini's Feast of the Gods takes apart the layers of Feast of the Gods, painted by Giovanni Bellini, repainted by Dosso Dossi, and repainted again by Tiziano Vecellio--that is, Titian. Visitors can see the results of x-rays and other imaging techniques, view the painting's changing context in the Duke of Ferrara's gallery, and examine details in close-up. [more inside]
posted by thomas j wise at 7:25 PM PST - 9 comments

" There were lots of small children in the audience. I thought about asking one little girl if she had voted for the paddle, the rod or the cattle prod." In 1995, a company called Interfilm revolutionized the movie industry. Oh, no, wait, it didn't. Audiences at Mr. Payback, "the first interactive movie," pressed buttons on a joystick attached to their seat to vote on the actions of the characters on-screen -- for instance, what kind of physical abuse a captured thug should undergo. Despite the pedigree of director Bob Gale (writer/producer of Back to the Future) and co-star Christopher Lloyd, critics were not impressed. The company folded a week after releasing its third interfilm, "I'm Your Man," scored by Joe Jackson, which did, a few years Interfilm was the brainchild of "conceptualist" and guy-with-gigantic-glasses Bob Bejan (Dateline NBC interview), who now works at a next-generation, data-driven marketing agency that delivers strategic, multi-channeled communication solutions designed to cultivate and sustain relationships between brands and their audiences. Watch: Clips from "Mr. Payback." The making of "I'm Your Man." (warning: A. Whitney Brown.) Read: the New York Times on the 1998 DVD release of "I'm Your Man." Booklet copy from the "I'm Your Man" DVD.
posted by escabeche at 6:45 PM PST - 43 comments

Hip-hop has another warrant of bourgeois respectability to place on the shelf: Run-D.M.C. have had a street named after them in Brooklyn.
posted by shothotbot at 5:21 PM PST - 37 comments

Slang in the Great Depression. Less'n you're a dumbcluck, you're gonna open up that bazoo and speak the language taught John Swartzwelder everything he knows. [more inside]
posted by ford and the prefects at 5:07 PM PST - 20 comments

The Revolving Floor is a curated community of writers and artists, focused on finding creative ways to share diverse perspectives through creating content around shared topics. Every month, a new topic. Several times per week, a new post, each time by a different author. [via mefi projects]
posted by netbros at 5:06 PM PST - 11 comments

District 9 has generated some discussion here and elsewhere. But, what do South African viewers of the film think about it?.
posted by smrtsch at 3:01 PM PST - 121 comments

Sheila Lukins - one of the most important figures in the American food revolution - has died of a brain tumor at the age of 66. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 1:36 PM PST - 27 comments

Drilling a Square Hole. Can a drill be constructed which makes square holes?
Previous attempts have focused on Reuleaux triangles (a shape of constant width - useful for manhole covers) - but these produce square holes with rounded edges.
However, in 1939, in an anonymous article in Mechanical World magazine, plans were published for a device which uses circular motion to make perfectly square holes.
In their new book, How Round is your Circle, John Bryant and Chris Sangwin, build and demonstrate this device (scroll down for a video of the working device).
posted by vacapinta at 1:13 PM PST - 78 comments

Gustave Dore's engravings for the Old Testament. High quality enough to print. New Testament is here, though it's not nearly as exciting. Much of the rest of his work can be found here (The Raven, Rime of the Ancient Mariner, The Divine Comedy and so on), albeit in varying resolutions.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 1:05 PM PST - 32 comments

Island of Sorrows. On the far western tip of continental Europe lie The Blasket Islands, picturesque in the sunlight. Great Blasket produced a great wealth (scroll down) of oral and written folk history from personages such as Peig Sayers (photo); and Tomas O'Crohan and Maurice O'Sullivan.
Here's a brief , more recent of the Island and a bibliography of Blasket Literature.
posted by adamvasco at 12:54 PM PST - 9 comments


AMASSBLOG my name is james phillips williams. most everyone calls me jp. i have been a designer in new york for 20 years. i started this blog at the urging of my friends and fellow designers who were familiar with my manic collecting. my collections are varied but generally have to do with typography or design.
posted by OmieWise at 12:31 PM PST - 11 comments

This past Thursday the Canadian government granted refugee status to Brandon Huntley, a South African who has been living illegally in Canada since 2005. Huntley claimed that if he were to be repatriated back to South Africa he would be persecuted due to the fact that he is white. The South African government is not amused. [more inside]
posted by PenDevil at 12:11 PM PST - 56 comments

Stuff Christian Culture Likes - A preacher's daughter marries another preacher's son and offers an insider's perspective about youth leaders, tips and hawks, sexual jewelry, hot wives, drama teams, video games, Jumbotrons, coffee, graphic design, typography and more.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:49 AM PST - 197 comments

LI'L MUSHROOM GUY
LEAP-FROGGIN' O's
☣☮ BIOHAZARDOUS HIPPIE WARNING
THREE VIOLINS SHARING HULA HOOP
Unicode table for you: with sliders to help you whiz through all those characters you didn't even know you had.
All symbols in the table have links underneath them which lead to active Wikipedia Pages.
[ previously , via ]

posted by not_on_display at 11:36 AM PST - 91 comments

The usual summary of comic book artist Will Eisner’s career follows the formula that he drew the Spirit all through the 1940s except for the war years and a bunch of ‘graphic novels’ from 1978 till the end of his life in 2005. There’s a long missing period between 1951 and 1978 during which he packaged and adapted cartoon art to commercial purposes, which has not been readily available for our scrutiny or pleasure. It is sometimes summarily dismissed as being of little interest. - Artist Eddie Campbell reappraises Will Eisner's missing years.
posted by Artw at 11:29 AM PST - 13 comments

Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library has an online atlas of U.S. States and how their county boundaries have changed over time. Once you have your state on the screen, type in a date and you will see the historical county borders over the current borders. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 11:26 AM PST - 11 comments

Kill or cure: making sense of the Daily Mail’s ongoing effort to classify every inanimate object into those that cause cancer and those that prevent it. Paul Battley uses automation and crowd-sourcing in the war against bad science reporting.
posted by fatllama at 11:00 AM PST - 27 comments

Shaquille O'Neal's Payer Player (WARNING: scary plug-ins and pop-up video men) is ... "[o]ne central location for sharing, socializing, creating while honoring and rewarding you for the value you bring to the network." On Tuesday, Google announced it would expand revenue sharing to single (i.e. "viral") videos. Does community-contributed-video revenue sharing have a future? (see also: Flixya, Revver) (via Shaq on Twitter) (previously)
posted by mrgrimm at 10:42 AM PST - 11 comments

Soul Train (wiki) has a youtube channel. Lots of great performances here, but in particular I recommend The O'Jays, Sly and The Family Stone, Stevie Wonder, The Stairsteps, and the Jackson 5. What really makes it worth watching though are the clips of the Soul Train Line dancing to hits of the day, artists like The O'Jay, Curtis Mayfield, War, and The JB's.
posted by phrontist at 10:01 AM PST - 25 comments

TARP investments yield 15% returns. Almost trom the start, critics characterized the TARP program that first began under the Bush administration and that continued through early this year under President Obama as a taxpayer funded giveaway, while government officials insisted it was a long-term investment program whose initial costs would eventually turn a profit as economic recovery began. Now the NY Times reports that the program has already yielded $4 billion in profits, and a separate report reveals that related Federal Reserve loan programs aimed at economic stabilization have returned $14 billion in profits.
posted by saulgoodman at 7:57 AM PST - 119 comments

The lives of transplanted elders are largely untracked, unknown outside their ethnic or religious communities. “They never win spelling bees,” said Judith Treas, a sociology professor and demographer at the University of California, Irvine. “They do not join criminal gangs. And nobody worries about Americans losing jobs to Korean grandmothers.”
Older Immigrants, Invisible and With ‘Nobody to Talk To’ in the New York Times. Elderly immigrants, the US's fastest growing immigrant population [pdf], have been hit hard by the rough economic climate. Changes in welfare law in the mid-90s made it harder for immigrants to receive benefits. Long resisting the trend towards nursing homes, elderly immigrants have enrolled in greater numbers in recent years.
posted by Kattullus at 7:45 AM PST - 8 comments

KITAB.UZ is a website [est. in Sep 2007 by Otabek OGULYAMOV - ed.] dedicated to creation and maintenance of digital historical, literal and cultural works about Southern Uzbekistan. Scholars, students and all individuals who are interested in the following topics are welcomed to browse our pages.
posted by yegga at 7:08 AM PST - 12 comments

The Maltese Falcon: Take 1. The classic Humphrey Bogart Maltese Falcon (1941) was the third movie version of Dashiell Hammett's novel. The first movie was made in 1931. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 7:04 AM PST - 37 comments

Iron Mouse? Disney to buy Marvel for 4 Billion dollars. This is good news for Marvel Shareholders but is it good news for Marvel fans?
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 6:55 AM PST - 174 comments

Throat singing is popular in Tuva and Siberia, but other people try it too. Like this guy or this guy or grace guy or some guy in a lake. You too can learn to throat sing. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:43 AM PST - 21 comments

First there was the State Language Act that many Hungarians and EU observers claim discriminates against the significant Hungarian minority in Slovakia. The Slovaks were predictably indigent. The issue isn't new though. Relations soured further when the Slovaks recently refused entry to the Hungarian President. Clearly, there is much history to overcome.
posted by vac2003 at 2:22 AM PST - 34 comments

August 30

People are starting to get a little worn out on Healthcare coverage, or at least, a little worn out on the way it's been covered. Thank god our own grrarrgh00 isn't listening. Because someone has to spread the truth about Obama's nazi socialist communist granny killing satanist witchcraft healthcare reform.
posted by tylerfulltilt at 10:25 PM PST - 63 comments

Tax authorities using social networks to find tax cheats Yet another reason to be careful who you accept a friend request from.
posted by reenum at 9:49 PM PST - 25 comments

Jacques Vergès has defended Milosevic, Carlos The Jackal, Saddam Hussein and nazi Klaus Barbie (you know, with with the one with the museum) in court. What kind person does it take to do that, and why? [more inside]
posted by smoke at 8:57 PM PST - 29 comments


C0nc0rdance [sytl] asks; How far should we trust common sense? A less than 9 min video on Common Sense as it relates to Science. Enjoy.
posted by nola at 8:36 PM PST - 30 comments

There's drag, and then there's female impersonation. Jim Bailey has been exquisitely demonstrating that difference for decades. Here are his dead-on recreations of Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Phyllis Diller, Bette Davis, and Peggy Lee. He still performs.
posted by Help, I can't stop talking! at 7:25 PM PST - 28 comments

Alex Kralie, a film student, was shooting his student project in 2006. It was never completed, due to what Alex called "unworkable conditions", and his friend and classmate talked Alex into handing over the raw footage. The name of the film was to be Marble Hornets, and that's the name of the youtube account used to released interesting or odd snippets from Alex Kralie's aborted film. Marble Hornets Introduction [more inside]
posted by boo_radley at 4:35 PM PST - 123 comments

Transition, the latest from Iain Banks... or is it Iain M. Banks? Anyway, as well dead tree and audio, it's also a free podcast on Itunes... [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:27 PM PST - 96 comments

Knossos: Fakes, Facts, and Mystery. "The masterpieces of Minoan art are not what they seem... The truth is that these famous icons are largely modern. As any sharp-eyed visitor to the Heraklion museum can spot, what survives of the original paintings amounts in most cases to no more than a few square inches. The rest is more or less imaginative reconstruction, commissioned in the first half of the twentieth century by Sir Arthur Evans, the British excavator of the palace of Knossos (and the man who coined the term 'Minoan' for this prehistoric Cretan civilization, after the mythical King Minos who is said to have held the throne there). As a general rule of thumb, the more famous the image now is, the less of it is actually ancient."
posted by homunculus at 2:16 PM PST - 16 comments

Look up and smile.
posted by jayCampbell at 12:47 PM PST - 31 comments

Wireless electricity has been mentioned previously. A recent TED Talk actually shows it in action. The presenter, Eric Giler of WiTricity Corp (a startup founded by MIT researcher Marin Soljačić), mentions the first attempt at wireless electricity, the Wardenclyffe Tower, designed and built over a hundred years ago by Nikola Tesla. [more inside]
posted by Deathalicious at 12:10 PM PST - 95 comments

Alternative wine closures are being resisted. Alcoa's new glass stopper with Dupont's vinyl ring costs nearly the same as a cork (50¢ to 70¢ each), but requires new bottling machines. Although cheaper screw caps also prevent undesirable compounds from tainting wine, and eliminates the need for horizontal storage, they change the purist aspect of the bottle and are not biodegradable. Naturalists point out the problem of having cork forests disappear in the Mediterranean region from low demand.
posted by Brian B. at 10:43 AM PST - 97 comments

How do you spread your genes around when you're stuck in one place? By tricking animals, including us, into falling in love. Orchids — Love and Lies [more inside]
posted by netbros at 10:24 AM PST - 15 comments

"There are views in this city where you cannot see, except for a person or maybe a dog, another living thing. Not a tree or a plant. How did a place become like that?" Before and after photo gallery
posted by Glibpaxman at 10:23 AM PST - 13 comments


It really isn't safe out there. Click any link and scroll down for up close shipping and aircraft disasters.
posted by adamvasco at 6:12 AM PST - 17 comments

Ever wanted a visual tally of the computers, personal data, and other property lost by or stolen from the US federal government? Presenting the Government Lost & Found Map, via OhMyGov!.
posted by the littlest brussels sprout at 4:58 AM PST - 3 comments

For the last two years, Flickr user HK Man has been collecting old photos of Hong Kong, finding the exact spots at which they were taken, and taking them again. The result, from his first photo of Victoria Harbor to a more recent one of Nathan Road, comprises a chronicle of Hong Kong's unrestrained vertical development over the past few decades. In a similar vein, Gwulo is a community site for "for everyone that is interested in old Hong Kong" and includes photos, mysteries, and discussions -- such as this one about old Kai Tak Airport. [more inside]
posted by milquetoast at 3:43 AM PST - 28 comments

August 29

You'd be forgiven for rolling your eyes as soon as you hear about yet another Beatles box set reissue whatever, but the upcoming release of practically their entire catalog in the original MONO MIXES is certainly cause for genuine celebration for anyone who cares to hear the Beatles' music in the audio format that they themselves signed off on. Once we hear for ourselves, come September 9, we'll see if we agree with producer George Martin: "You've never really heard Sgt Pepper until you've heard it in mono."
posted by flapjax at midnite at 11:55 PM PST - 149 comments

"The so-called "Mississippi Madman," connects the energy of crunk with African American spirituality and youthful abandon." But what exactly is crunk? While some might say it is a concoction, folk etymology suggests the modern usage of crunk originated as a portmanteau of the words "crazy" and "drunk" or having been "cranked up" to a level of excitability at which one becomes "crunk". But I think the kids have it on this one.
posted by bunnycup at 10:26 PM PST - 21 comments

Saturday Night Simpsons Dance Remix Post: Dennal Plan, a remix, How it was made [more inside]
posted by The Whelk at 8:08 PM PST - 26 comments

The Iraqi who saved Norway from oil: requires registration, but it's worth it.
...dependency on natural resources can poison a country’s economic and political system. Inflows of hard currency push up prices, squeezing the competitiveness of non-oil businesses and starving them of capital. As a result, productivity growth withers (a phenomenon known as “Dutch disease” after the negative effects of North Sea gas production on the Netherlands). Meanwhile, the state institutions in charge of oil often become corrupt and evade democratic control. And oil-rich states almost invariably waste the income it brings, many ending their oil booms deeper in debt than when they started.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:43 PM PST - 32 comments

Youtube user Omahdon takes regular old comics and adds voices, sound effects, and incidental music, bringing them to life in a way that sometimes surpasses the mute originals. [more inside]
posted by Askiba at 6:23 PM PST - 11 comments

MacGyver Chef, making snow and cooking with magnets at Alinea, the history of the spork, cooking in a hotel room, a poo machine, and other adventures in food and technology from Gizmodo's week-long series Taste Test.
posted by youarenothere at 5:49 PM PST - 13 comments



Happy Katrina Day. [more inside]
posted by vapidave at 2:32 PM PST - 16 comments

Never trust a Sperm Whale. [more inside]
posted by vronsky at 1:17 PM PST - 19 comments

The dog don't like you planting stuff there. It's his backyard. If you're the only one who shits in something, you own it. Remember that.
Justin posts stuff that his 73-year-old dad says on Twitter.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:07 PM PST - 74 comments

Tracy Kidder’s new book 'Strength in What Remains' receives rave reviews from Ron Suskind at the NYT Sunday Book Review. An Excerpt from Chapter 1. The website of Deogratias' Village Health Works. A short blog post about Deo's younger brother, Asvelt, which also includes a video of wonderful Burundian drumming
posted by growabrain at 12:52 PM PST - 6 comments

"The subjects vary... but there is an ideological approach in America that is distinguished by one common characteristic: words and deeds utterly lacking in the quality of mercy," by Charles Stross. Or, in other words, is using a minotaur to gore detainees a form of torture?
posted by geos at 12:22 PM PST - 88 comments


Lizzie Miller is a "plus" size model and a photo of her, sized only 3 inches, is making (some) waves in the fashion world and general media.
posted by Megami at 9:47 AM PST - 256 comments

The Warrior Writers Project brings together recent veterans and current service members to be in creative community and utilize art-making processes to express themselves. There is a deep necessity for veterans to create when so much has been shattered and stolen. A profound sense of hope comes from the ability to rebuild and transform.
posted by netbros at 8:46 AM PST - 3 comments

Japan's opposition party, The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), is projected to win a landslide victory tomorrow, ending the 52-year reign of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). Furthermore, according to a survey conducted by the popular Asahi Shimbun newspaper, the DPJ could win a two-thirds majority, enabling them to roll legislation through the Diet unabated. Despite the projections, the two parties are still battling hard. Washington is following these elections very closely, because of the man who could be the next prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama. [more inside]
posted by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing at 8:03 AM PST - 46 comments

Snark.
posted by Olli at 6:34 AM PST - 54 comments

Victorian mourning photography, featuring the recently departed in realistic poses.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:47 AM PST - 32 comments

August 28

How to Make (Primordial) Soup. Narrated for the Air & Space Museum 30+ years ago, in her own kitchen, by the one, the only, Julia Child. Bon appetit. (JC previously.) [10-minute SLYT]
posted by LeLiLo at 9:51 PM PST - 12 comments

Some guy named Spence Peppard takes a flying shot at Willie Nelson and Patsy Cline's Crazy.
posted by loquacious at 9:44 PM PST - 50 comments

Adam Goldstein, AKA DJ AM, found dead in Manhattan. Celebrity DJ survived a plane crash last year and may have died of a drug overdose.
posted by ShadePlant at 7:56 PM PST - 67 comments

"Some consider 20-year-old Fred Grzybowski the best pogo-stick rider in the world, able to leap over a minivan, among other feats. But his days on top may be numbered." Pogopalooza: The 6th Annual Extreme Pogo Competition.
posted by Lutoslawski at 5:53 PM PST - 16 comments

Steve Ditko is, of course, best known for being the co-creator and original artist of Spider-Man. What most people don’t know... is that in the early 1970s he went on a tear and produced a series of insane Objectivist independent comics/rants (13MB PDF) that are unlike any comics produced then or now. - Dinosaur Gardens [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 4:29 PM PST - 60 comments

Is there a hunger in your sinister soul? Let Wilkinson's Family Restaurant feed your need. Oh sorry, they're out of business now. Rather, are you in the market for tools of depravity? Then Donald & Sons Hardware can supply your dark needs. Intrigued by the creative process behind these advertisements? Step inside the studio to see the magic behind the first and second video advert from Witchitel Music and LynchLand. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 3:17 PM PST - 20 comments

One Angel supplied his own. Others depended on humans.
posted by Mblue at 3:12 PM PST - 17 comments

Seven gay friends who summer on Fire Island Pines [note: autoload music] decided on a whim to make a lip-sync video (in Speedos) of tween favorite Miley Cyrus' song "Party in the USA". She loves it. And it turns out that the family-oriented, intellectual property "überprotective" company that represents Miley also loves and endorses the fan video. [more inside]
posted by ericb at 3:11 PM PST - 89 comments

A short documentary on John Nese: Soda pop obsessive. His store Galco's in Los Angeles sells more than two-hundred kinds of soda pop, particularly favoring small-label, glass-bottled and cane-sweetened fare. Yay. [more inside]
posted by Bookhouse at 1:32 PM PST - 47 comments

How to value and sell your gold. Probably a waste of time though, those real people who sold their gold on TV seem happy enough.
posted by alan at 12:31 PM PST - 20 comments

A Walk to Remember. For three hours Wednesday evening, the Zion – Mount Carmel Highway was closed to car traffic inside Zion National Park to let 300 people walk through the tunnel. It may have been the last time for people to do so legally for the foreseeable future. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 12:30 PM PST - 9 comments

Ornate Letter Directory
posted by yegga at 11:51 AM PST - 7 comments

People are dying and grooming their poodles to look like panda bears, camels, and bison. Seriously. I apologize for the SL, but this is too weird not to share. Here's another link or two.
posted by k8t at 11:06 AM PST - 86 comments

August Wind is a top-down 'free-roaming shooter' about mining valuable metals off the backs of cloudeels. It's the Bachelor Thesis project for Jeremy Spillmann at the Zürich School of the Arts. It features charming 2D graphics and a gypsy soundtrack. [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 11:01 AM PST - 7 comments

The now-defunct Bang Barstal tells the story of a man and his baseball bat after everything went wrong at once.
posted by Pope Guilty at 11:01 AM PST - 7 comments

Subways were the first application. Using the iPhone 3GS' camera, GPS, and compass, several new apps overlay information on a live view of the world around you. This week, Yelp joins them. William Gibson, eat your heart out. (A brief introduction to augmented reality for those who need one.)
posted by spitefulcrow at 10:55 AM PST - 31 comments


The Big Africa Cycle. Peter Gostelow is cycling from Dorset, England to Cape Town to raise funds for The Against Malaria Foundation. And it's not his first big adventure. [more inside]
posted by fire&wings at 9:55 AM PST - 2 comments

The Anatomy of Spiral Arms, shows how galaxies naturally evolve to form grand-design two-arm spirals. The Hubble Ultra Deep Field in 3D. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 7:56 AM PST - 18 comments

Crap Happens. "Three hundred million Americans head to the restroom multiple times a day. The amount of sludge produced staggers the mind—7 million dry tons per year and counting. And it’s not even just crap—it contains residues from everything else we put down the drain, from the detergent in your dishwasher to the chemicals used at the industrial plant down the street."
posted by burnfirewalls at 7:56 AM PST - 70 comments

I don't care what anyone thinks, MS Paint comics are the best.
posted by Premeditated Symmetry Breaking at 7:51 AM PST - 16 comments

A rock given to the Netherlands as a gift by the American Ambassador to commemorate the Apollo-11 moon landing is tested and found to be nothing but petrified wood. Expect a "I told you so" from your neighbourhood conspiracy theorist at any moment. [more inside]
posted by dearsina at 7:50 AM PST - 81 comments


Olive Lambert's Autograph Book
posted by Miko at 7:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Technology innovation will be a large part of late 20th century American history. Now the gearheads can explore the roots of all that geekdom. The Geek's Guide to Seattle is a virtual tour of some of the region’s most interesting and notable technology locations. A Geek's Tour of Silicon Valley hits hotspots there. Don't forget The Tech Museum and the Computer History Museum. Back east, there's Research Triangle Park (pdf) in North Carolina, and The Computing Revolution at the Museum of Science in Boston.
posted by netbros at 6:58 AM PST - 8 comments

Yamashita Kogyosho (jp) is a small manufacturer of about 30 people based in Kudamatsu, a city in Yamaguchi Prefecture, western Japan. Like many small urban factories (so-called "machikoba"), they specialize in precision metalwork under contract to major corporations. But Yamashita Kogyosho is special: they create the noses for bullet trains. By hand. [more inside]
posted by armage at 6:08 AM PST - 24 comments

Whether you grew up checking out books like Louis the Fish and If You Give a Mouse a Cookie from the library every week, or you just know Steve Horlick's iconic theme song, you're probably familiar with Reading Rainbow, which ends its 26-year run today. [more inside]
posted by uncleozzy at 6:01 AM PST - 67 comments


The recession has seen the closure of many stores - from small local outfits to famous longstanding chains. Brian Ulrich's Dark Stores chronicles the ghostboxes of America, and the Guardian's Recession Monitor Flickr pool shows the view from the other side of the Atlantic. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 4:58 AM PST - 16 comments

The ring wing or annular airfoil is an aircraft design which has been experimented with throughout the history of aviation with some interesting variations. It has served as the inspiration for several paper airplane designs, model airplanes of course, and a variety of children's toys. The capabilities imagined by the French coléoptère engineers of the 1950's and 1960's and the U.S. "flying tank" designers are available today at least in the form of unmanned vehicles (large PDF brochure, 6 minute video download, 1½ minute YT news clip). The technology has also been adapted to become the surfboard tunnel fin and there are underwater UAVs as well.
posted by XMLicious at 4:00 AM PST - 14 comments

Painting +puzzle +compulsory 'Da Vinci' ref. Glasgow artist Frank McNab Previously has an interesting series of paintings on display in an exhibition at the Mitchell Library in Glasgow. Running until the end of October the paintings have the common theme of 'Libraries in the Community" and are a celebration of both the buildings themselves and their patrons. Check out the link not just for the obvious quality of the works on display but also to see if YOU can be the one to solve the riddle hidden within the paintings themselves.
posted by Wrick at 1:08 AM PST - 2 comments

Was it triage or murder? A disturbing NY Times story about the choices made by certain medical staff at a New Orleans hospital during Hurricane Katrina. Long and not easy reading.
posted by anigbrowl at 12:29 AM PST - 81 comments

OMGpop is potentially all your Flash Fun Fridays come at once. Clones of addictive classic multiplayer games like Bomberman, Pictionary, Tetris, even Mario Kart and Guitar Hero - plus a whole lot more, all wrapped up in an extremely slick interface with an added dash of chat and social networking features. Not yet out of beta, the hype is certainly extensive, but is the business model sound? [more inside]
posted by TheTorns at 12:26 AM PST - 21 comments

August 27

Sleep tight. (I recommend you listen to this while viewing the link.)
posted by grumblebee at 8:11 PM PST - 10 comments


What do you do when your state's facing an $11 billion shortfall? Hold a garage sale. [more inside]
posted by HumuloneRanger at 7:56 PM PST - 44 comments

Getting Real About The High Price of Cheap Food. Why the food we're eating is hurting us, the animals we eat, our world, and what people are trying to do about it.
posted by Askiba at 6:47 PM PST - 205 comments

Nokia has announced the n900 running the maemo Linux based operating system will be released in October. The phone has similar specifications to the iphone, but with a keyboard and considerably higher resolution display (800x480). In addition the OS is an open platform with free GPL development tools. More from The Guardian and CNET.
posted by sien at 6:43 PM PST - 83 comments

No more moldy berries. There are plenty of problems in the world but having your berries going moldy overnight is no longer one of them.
posted by storybored at 5:52 PM PST - 45 comments

Everitt is a pyro.
posted by boo_radley at 5:15 PM PST - 28 comments

A five-page Washington Post epic about the pluralistic cults of WaWa and Sheetz. If you've ever spent any significant amount of time in the Mid-Atlantic states, you'll understand. (print format link)
posted by potch at 3:50 PM PST - 102 comments

The Status of the P Versus NP Problem It's one of the fundamental mathematical problems of our time, and its importance grows with the rise of powerful computers. (via mr)
posted by kliuless at 3:46 PM PST - 116 comments


Street Time for Hamsun. This month marks 150 years since the birth of the Norwegian writer Knut Hamsun, Nobel laureate in 1920. As well as the opening of a new centre dedicated to the man and his work, a whole range of events have been held in relation to this anniversary. It has also been the occasion for academic conferences, commemorative coins, tourism campaigns, and stamps. A writer of brilliance; a deeply problematic legacy. Previously on mefi.
posted by hydatius at 2:29 PM PST - 24 comments


Mickey Mouse's early road to fame (yt playlist with ~160 videos) has some odd twists and turns. One of Walt Disney's early cartoon creations was Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, the star of Trolley Troubles (5:45, 1927) and other early shorts. Disney had big plans for the popular little rabbit, and wanted to increase his budget from Universal Pictures. Unfortunately, Charles B. Mintz wanted to scale back the budget, and in the end Universal kept control of Oswald Rabbit. Without Oswald, Disney needed something new. Jack Dunham, one of Disney's Nine Old Men recalled animating Oswald and "the one without the ears." Initially, this one was called Mortimer, but Lillian Disney, Walt Disney's wife, believed the name "Mortimer" sounded too pompous and suggested the name Mickey, though Mickey Rooney claims he was the inspiration. Either way, the mouse was renamed Mickey in short order, and he starred in Plane Crazy (video, 6:00, 1928, previously). By 1929, he was wearing his iconic gloves (and talking), in The Karnival Kid (video, 7:41). But Mortimer returned, as Mickey's Rival (8:16, 1936), eventually getting his own themesong (1:56, modern recording off of TV; better quality song with a still image, 1:35) and again in a modern short (1:30, 2000), amongst other appearances. Then there's Uncle Mortimer, who first traveled with Mickey Mouse in Death Valley, though it's not always clear whose uncle he is. And in the alternate universe that is Bloom County, Mickey's fraternal twin is Mortimer (technically, he resides in Outland).
posted by filthy light thief at 1:51 PM PST - 10 comments

CBS plans to run video advertising Entertainment Weekly.
posted by Pants! at 1:07 PM PST - 48 comments

An essay on the horrors of the Port Authority Bus Terminal, in the form of a Choose Your Own Adventure® story. [more inside]
posted by mhum at 12:47 PM PST - 40 comments

Lester Young (Aug. 27, 1909–March 15, 1959) is given not just a memorial, but extensive musicological criticism and contextual information in this ten-chapter series by jazz pianist and blogger Ethan Iverson of The Bad Plus. Solo transcriptions and analyses, interviews with Lee Konitz, Tootie and Jimmy Heath, Benny Golson, an essay on Young's influence on Miles Davis, a discographic primer and more. (Previously.) [more inside]
posted by ism at 10:26 AM PST - 14 comments

On June 10th, 1991 Jaycee Lee Dugard, age 11, was kidnapped at a bus stop. Despite eyewitness who called authorities immediately and a massive manhunt she was never found. Today she walked into a police station.
posted by Bonzai at 10:25 AM PST - 230 comments

Dominick Dunne died yesterday at the age of 83. was well known for his chronicling of the follies and crimes of the rich. You can read some of his pieces from Vanity Fair here.
posted by reenum at 10:00 AM PST - 26 comments

Model Arrested for Posing Nude in New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art "She told me there were naked statues everywhere," the guard said. "I said, 'Those statues are 400 years old. You're from the 21st century.' " (nsfw-ish) [more inside]
posted by dirtdirt at 9:40 AM PST - 105 comments

78641 is a "hit Esperanto interactive simulator" now available in English - a surreal freeware adventure game in which you play a frying pan named Dougo Beaches who deals with car trouble. There is time traveling. And don't worry, the Ethiopian children who drew the artwork were "paid in candy / peanut substance." Video trailer. Windows only. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 8:09 AM PST - 13 comments

Coder Girl -- an ode to all the female programmers out there (youtube)
posted by Afroblanco at 7:51 AM PST - 80 comments



61 literary euphemisms for masturbation…
via the always discreeet Miss Cellania
(and yes, we've had something similar here before, but it missed this list, which is, you know, literary)

posted by wendell at 3:13 AM PST - 110 comments

Metafilter has never really had a front page post just about Burning Man. Maybe this year it will be different, because Burning Man goes digital.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:34 AM PST - 70 comments

Maine Ways (SLYT)
posted by lalex at 12:20 AM PST - 40 comments

Aunt Feminina Boots's Char-Broiled Book Club — Feminina Boots has been experiencing a lot of difficulty lately trying to find a book club where she can say things that aren’t just going to upset people. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 12:18 AM PST - 18 comments

August 26


Best Science Visualization Videos of 2009 from Wired Magazine
posted by Confess, Fletch at 10:20 PM PST - 8 comments

Gorilla Sandwich. (Probably not what you think - SFW) You can make your own (with cheesy 70s porn music). [more inside]
posted by Smedleyman at 10:20 PM PST - 27 comments

Jason Derulo's song "Watcha Say" which debuted at 54th on the Billboard Hot 100 and is currently 5th on the Itunes Top 100 list prominently samples Imogen Heap's song "Hide and Seek" without giving her credit. Sampling in rap music has a long and controversial history.
posted by kylej at 9:03 PM PST - 46 comments

What is The Institute for Human Continuity? Are you The One? Find out about the E.A.R.T.H. Initiative & Operation Safe Haven. Farewell Atlantis - fiction meets fact? As always there's another perspective. Oh yeah, and don't forget to see the movie.
posted by scalefree at 8:57 PM PST - 35 comments

Wow. I was going to say something witty and clever, and I got nothin, so: "The new Web-based Sony Library Finder tool can be used to find e-books in the local library that can be checked out, downloaded onto a desktop computer and then loaded onto a Sony Reader device -- all without charge." [Note - Probably USian] [more inside]
posted by ZakDaddy at 8:20 PM PST - 62 comments

Betty Nickell, a 72 year old resident of Mansfield, Ohio, recently received some unexpected news. Much to her surprise, she learned that she had been inducted into the Rockabilly Hall of Fame. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 7:53 PM PST - 16 comments


British Women Romantic Poets Project is a collection of poetry written by women from the British Isles between 1789 and 1832. Over a hundred female poets are represented. Women rarely feature in literary histories of the Romantic period but there is treasure if you search (some poems are, frankly, terrible). A few places to start are Charlotte Turner Smith's Elegiac Sonnets, and Other Poems, Christian Ross Milne's Simple Poems on Simple Subjects and Mary Robinson's sonnet cycle Sappho and Phaon. The oddest works to modern readers may be Elizabeth Hitchener's Enigmas, Historical and Geographical and Marianne Curties' Classical Pastime, which are collections of verse riddles (the answers are at the end of the text).
posted by Kattullus at 7:28 PM PST - 5 comments

"In 1971, Memphis act Big Star laid down tracks for what became one of the greatest rock albums of all time, the aptly-titled "#1 Record." During the historic sessions, bassist Andy Hummel and co-founder Chris Bell shot the following footage" + Nightime + Thirteen + Kangaroo
posted by vronsky at 6:01 PM PST - 48 comments

This fall, law students are competing for half as many openings at big firms as they were last year in what is shaping up to be the most wrenching job search season in over 50 years.

Had I seen where the market was going, I would’ve gone to a lower-ranked but less expensive public school,” [a second year law student at Penn] said. “I’m questioning whether law school was the right choice at all."
posted by plexi at 4:22 PM PST - 214 comments

"God save me!" quoth the priest, with a loud voice, "is Tirante the White there? Give me him here, neighbour; for I make account I have found in him a treasure of delight, and a mine of entertainment. Here we have Don Kyrieleison of Montalvan, a valorous knight, and his brother Thomas of Montalvan, and the knight Fonseca, and the combat in which the valiant Tirante fought with the mastiff, and the smart conceits of the damsel Plazerdemivida, with the amours and artifices of the widow Reposada; and madam the empress in love with her squire Hypolito. Verily, gossip, in its way, it is the best book in the world..."
-Don Quixote de la Mancha, Part I, Chapter 6 [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 3:18 PM PST - 11 comments

5 Myths About Health Care Around the World by T.R. Reid (Washington Post)
posted by blue_beetle at 3:17 PM PST - 141 comments

A Saudi Prince tells America to give up futile dreams of energy independence. Op-Ed in the NYT says Peak Oil is a waste of energy and an illusion. Meanwhile, the OECD's energy advisors, the IEA are saying cheap oil will run out in ten years, a decade sooner than estimates made as recently as 2007.
posted by bystander at 2:57 PM PST - 88 comments

From the publisher's website: "The YouTube Reader is the first full-length book to explore YouTube as an industry, an archive and a cultural form." Features some seasoned commentators, among them film analyst Thomas Elsaesser, and an online exhibition. Looks interesting.
posted by Holly at 2:47 PM PST - 11 comments

My Baby Is Like a Narcotic. Reflections on the "opium den" of new parenthood by New York University professor, author and journalist Katie Roiphe.
posted by Stonewall Jackson at 2:47 PM PST - 108 comments

Psychologist Nick Troop has performed a "psycholyrical analysis" of David Bowie's 26 albums and used his findings, along with text analysis software Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count, to write the "ideal" Bowie song (YT, 8:54; skip to 4:23 if you just want to hear the song). (See also.)
posted by Prospero at 2:14 PM PST - 40 comments

September 9, 2005 - Flight of the Conchords performed six songs and chatted with the audience as part of HBO's One Night Stand, not quite two years before the TV series would air. The show is online for your viewing pleasure (29 minute MySpace video, also available as a youtube playlist of 6 videos). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:29 PM PST - 65 comments

Ellie Greenwich, one of the foremost songwriters of the rock and roll era, has died at the age of 69. [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit at 11:00 AM PST - 37 comments

Sartorial inspiration for anachronistic atavists: Rhiannon, The Black Apple, Johanni, Solanah, Casey Brown, Strawberry Lemonade, Fleur de Guerre, The Freelancer, and Elinkan.
posted by Juliet Banana at 9:58 AM PST - 43 comments


Christopher Moore has been to Paris lately, and has decided to share some of his vacation snaps, and, most amusingly, teach us a bit of French.
posted by markkraft at 9:40 AM PST - 32 comments

At the insistence of Cincinnati Bengals owner Mike Brown, the FAA is apparently targeting a pilot who was hired this month by disgruntled fans to fly messages like "Hire a GM!" over the team's training camp. A "Mike Brown Step Down" banner was flown over games last season. Brown's futility (1 winning season in 18 years) in Cincinnati has spurred fans to pay thousands for billboards and distribute urinal cakes, while HBO's Hard Knocks series has recently shown insight into his cluelessness. [more inside]
posted by cashman at 9:03 AM PST - 63 comments

Last week, Eddy Temple Morris, a DJ on UK radio station XFM, challenged Twitter to remix as many songs as possible into 10 minutes. The previous record was held by Wizard of Deekline and Wizard - it is now held by rapper, producer and all-round renaissance man Akira the Don, who managed to fit a staggering 210 tracks into 1/6 of an hour. He's just put together a video to accompany the mix - watch it here
posted by muggsy1079 at 7:44 AM PST - 22 comments

Beijing loves IKEA - but not for shopping. "Every weekend, thousands of looky-loos pour into the massive showroom to use the displays. Some hop into bed, slide under the covers and sneak a nap; others bring cameras and pose with the decor. Families while away the afternoon in the store for no other reason than to enjoy the air conditioning."
posted by geoff. at 7:36 AM PST - 78 comments

Only six years old, January Schofield is severely schizophrenic, actively hallucinating and violent. An LA Times article in June and a follow-up in July describe her parents' attempts to get help for her. Her father also has a blog. [more inside]
posted by infinitywaltz at 7:18 AM PST - 123 comments

A red-billed blue magpie doesn't have anything on Predator. The 2005-2006 South-West Indian Ocean cyclone season, on the other hand, would blow that intergalactic hunter out of the water (literally).
posted by alzi at 6:38 AM PST - 24 comments

Ikea de-Futurafies. You may have noticed something at once familiar and unfamiliar about the 2009 Ikea catalogue: The company switched from a custom variant of Futura to the font you stare at all day in your browser, Verdana. And type nerds are losing their shit! [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 5:26 AM PST - 167 comments

The work of Leo and Diane Dillon is on display in Brooklyn. I was tempted to find more of their art after noticing the cover they did for A Wrinkle in Time. [more inside]
posted by nervousfritz at 12:33 AM PST - 8 comments

August 25

Edward M. Kennedy, Senator from Massachusetts, has died at age 77. After a rocky youth (including scandals of cheating and reckless driving), Kennedy followed his brothers into politics, making health care his cause, and eventually went on to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Anticipating his own death, he had been trying to create a quick transition for his replacement as a vote on health care reform rapidly approached.
posted by ocherdraco at 10:40 PM PST - 659 comments

The funicular railway is a kind of cable-based railway that gives me great joy because of its peculiar shape and its uselessness for doing anything other than what it does. A funicular carriage is generally stairstepped or terraced, so you can't repurpose these cars for other uses. They generally work in a particular way, too, as pairs: one goes up the mountain, one comes down the mountain! Maybe this kind of glee is why they seem to be especially popular in Japan today, where they can be taken to many popular sightseeing areas--but a fair number of funicular railway riders are probably there for the journey, not the destination. [more inside]
posted by wintersweet at 8:29 PM PST - 64 comments

Alloy Artifacts an "online resource for 20th century hand tools and the companies that made them".
posted by Mitheral at 8:27 PM PST - 9 comments

American Heart Association: American men should not consume more than 150 calories of sugar a day[pdf], American women 100 calories. paper[pdf]
posted by bigmusic at 7:33 PM PST - 88 comments


"In the beginning, they asked if I was sure I really wanted to do it," says Laura Dekker, the thirteen year old Dutch girl who wants to become the youngest person to ever sail around the world alone. "They have sailed around the world so they know what could happen and that it's not always fun, but I realize that too. But I really wanted to do it so my parents said, 'Good, we'll help you.'" (Additional Youtube link for people who don't like having to read words.)
posted by SkylitDrawl at 4:40 PM PST - 57 comments

Joshua Green Allen, who has been posting great internet for more than 15 years, if not longer, merges seamlessly with a new technology. If any twitter account is worth being renowned far and wide for hilarity: His Is. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 4:31 PM PST - 27 comments




Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the 2009 World Sauna Championships.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 2:39 PM PST - 31 comments

You've committed your life to Jesus. You know you're saved. But when the Rapture comes what's to become of your loving pets who are left behind?
Eternal Earth-Bound Pets takes that burden off your mind.
posted by plexi at 1:42 PM PST - 82 comments

A new BBC version of Dennis the Menace tones down the iconic British comics character. Or does it? It's another "political correctness gone mad" myth embellished by the media says cartoonist Lew Stringer.
posted by Artw at 1:39 PM PST - 29 comments

The Letter Repository contains hundreds of personal letters from the early 18th Century through the Second World War. A large portion of the letters are from periods of conflict, the largest chunk being from World War Two, though there are also sizable numbers from the First World War and the American Civil War. There are also quite a few love letters. You can both see scans of the letters (and photographs or other materials) as well as transcriptions, which you can edit should you spot errors. One of my favorite collection of correspondance is the one between a Herbert Beyer, who served in the Air Force in World War Two, his darling Cleo and his parents.
posted by Kattullus at 1:29 PM PST - 11 comments

Old-time radio (often abbreviated as "OTR," also known as the Golden Age of Radio) refers to a period of radio programming in the United States lasting from the proliferation of radio broadcasting in the early 1920s until television's replacement of radio as the dominant home entertainment medium in the 1950s, with some programs continuing into the early 1960s. The origin of radio dramas in the United States is hard to pin down, but there is evidence of a remote broadcast of a play in 1914 at Normal College (now California State University at San José), and the first serial radio drama was an adaptation of a play by Eugene Walter, entitled "The Wolf," which aired in September 1922. Given the age of the programs and the fact that home reel-to-reel recording started in the 1950s (followed by Philips "compact cassettes" in 1963), it might be surprising that quite a few of these old shows have survived. Thanks in part to original radio station-sourced recordings made on aluminum discs, acetates, and glass recordings and other unnamed sources, many radio dramas and newscasts from decades past are available online, and more are being digitized and restored to this day. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:47 PM PST - 53 comments

Original Futurama voice cast (yes all of them) on board for new season. Also, in related news, Torgo's Executive Powder back in stock at most retailers. via
posted by sexyrobot at 12:25 PM PST - 55 comments

Long form journalism on the Web is "not working." - TIME.com Managing Editor Josh Tyrangiel ..Among the detractors of this statement is David Sleight, Deputy Creative Director of BusinessWeek.com: "Really? It’s 2009 and we’re still having this conversation?" Scattered industry advice on this topic varies from moderate to extreme, and while web analytics paint a convincing picture of web readers, some wonder if long form journalism has EVER worked. Of course there seem to be other factors at play, like methods of presentation and quality of content.
posted by thisisdrew at 12:17 PM PST - 36 comments

About three months after her son's birth, Ms. Roscoe asked to see a psychiatrist. She was given a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, or P.T.S.D. — a mental illness more often associated with surviving war, car accidents and assaults, but now being recognized in parents of premature infants in prolonged intensive care. (nyt)
posted by swift at 12:05 PM PST - 19 comments

Striking Billboard Ads. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 10:15 AM PST - 72 comments

My Name is Roger, and I'm an alcoholic. Roger Ebert talks about AA.
posted by kmz at 10:05 AM PST - 133 comments

"Papa" John Schnatter loved his old Camaro so much he couldn't bear to watch it drive away after he sold it, but he used the proceeds of the sale to start a restaurant business (which ended up going pretty well). To celebrate the 25th anniversary of starting his restaurant, he traveled the US to thank his employees and search for his lost car. Surprisingly, he found it, bought it back and to celebrate he's giving everyone with a Camaro a free pizza tomorrow. (Aug. 26th)
posted by 1f2frfbf at 9:30 AM PST - 53 comments

Jim Sanborn's new piece, "Terrestrial Physics," reproduces early experiments in splitting the atom. Sanborn is the creator of Kryptos, discussed previously.
posted by exogenous at 9:23 AM PST - 8 comments

An Afghan Reconstruction Horror Story A sad look at the lack of progress in reforming Afghanistan's infrastructure.
posted by reenum at 9:17 AM PST - 9 comments

10 mgs of Valium. 2 mgs of Lorazepam. 2 mgs of Midazolam. Another 2 mgs of Lorazepam. Another 2 mgs of Midazolam. During a futile, nine-hour intravenous marathon, the insomniac Michael Jackson received a near-continuous cocktail of meds, culminating in the Propofol that killed him. The County of Los Angeles releases its Search Warrant and Affidavit. [more inside]
posted by Gordion Knott at 9:10 AM PST - 107 comments


In The Mood For Chris Doyle "The most Chinese white man to have ever lived...the incomparable, incredibly talented Chris Doyle... is a highly acclaimed, AFI Award-winning cinematographer, known for his use of extreme angles and vanguard color grading. He has won, amongst other accolades, the Cannes Technical Grand Prize, Golden Osella, the Golden Horse awards (four times), and Hong Kong Film Award (six times). Doyle is an affiliate of the Hong Kong Society of Cinematographers." (more)
posted by vronsky at 8:50 AM PST - 30 comments

One Bark at a Time: An amateur's notes on giving voice to abandoned dogs -- sometimes in a good way, but other stories will break your heart.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:30 AM PST - 4 comments

"I was just sick and tired of Texas law that allowed the defendant to destroy the very evidence that we need to protect society." Starting September 1st, police in Texas will be able to draw blood for alcohol testing from anyone involved in an auto accident without a warrant. Lauded by law enforcement officials such as Williamson County DA John Bradley (quoted above), and Dallas Police Chief David "we believe in the no-refusal process," Kunkle, it has others worried about what happens if someone refuses the test.
posted by nushustu at 7:57 AM PST - 121 comments

When the future was 2000AD by Garth Ennis. Thrill-power invested illustrative examples courtesy of Simon Gurr.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:32 AM PST - 37 comments


Fedor Emelianenko is the best fighter in the world. A "thinking man's fighter", he has defeated many larger opponents and even one giant. But Fedor is leaving the Ultimate Fighting Championship .
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:59 AM PST - 115 comments

August 24

Strongly Disagree: It bothers you a long time when someone is unfair to you. Other people's feelings are their own business. When people make mistakes, you correct them. You are a fairly private person. You don't believe a lot of what people say.
Strongly Agree: Any trouble you have is your own fault. It is maddening when the court lets guilty criminals go free. When someone treats you badly, you ignore it. You agree with people more often than you argue. You are careful not to offend people. You can wait patiently for a long time. You finish your work no matter what. You know when someone is in a bad mood, even if they don't show it. Your friends and family approve of the things you do. Your moods are steady from day to day.
....the expected answers... are always "Strongly Agree" or "Strongly Disagree." You actually have four options to choose from, when asked whether a statement applies to you or not... [but] "Disagree" or "Agree" are NEVER the right answer to any question, even though any sensible person will have mixed feelings about all these questions. [more inside]
posted by orthogonality at 11:39 PM PST - 147 comments

Matthew Weigman, a fat, blind kid, started phone swatting when he was 15. Three years later, he was sentenced to 11 years in prison. His exploits include trying to initiate phone sex with Lindsey Lohan, sending swat teams to people's homes and gathering confidential information from Verizon and AT&T. [more inside]
posted by kylej at 11:08 PM PST - 61 comments

Korean cell phone ads blur the line between music videos and ads. "Lollipop" from popular idol group Big Bang and newcomers 2NE1 was created to advertise LG cell phones and topped various Korean music charts in the process, even while government-owned broadcaster KBS refused to feature the song in its music countdown show because it was a jingle and not an actual single or album release. "Amoled", from Son Dambi and After School, was created to advertise Samsung's Amoled touchscreen phone. [more inside]
posted by needled at 8:49 PM PST - 31 comments

Two pens for sticks, table for a drum, listen to Lyric bang out Let the Beat Ride. [via] [more inside]
posted by cashman at 7:48 PM PST - 13 comments

Previously, we saw Darkseid rant to the empty air. Now the nightmarish lord of evil -- reduced to selling old Kiss cassette tapes to support his drinking habit, and living in a dumpster behind the Baby Gap -- rants to Twitter as HOBODARKSEID. Along the way, he shares his views on the ending of "Moonlighting," sings Dio's "Holy Diver," and confesses a love for "Mad Men." He also intends to destroy us all. Shudder/enjoy.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 6:42 PM PST - 14 comments

The Polar Bear/Grizzly Hybrid: The Ursid Hybrid cross has been attested since a hunter (with a Polar Bear license, and yes, they can be had) shot one in 2006 on Banks Island in Canada's Northwest Territories. Climate change may also play a role, causing an increasing overlap in range and mating season. Polar Bears do show a surprising resilience despite the overwhelming, increasing threats to their survival. Hunting policy itself may play a role, reducing the number of males and driving the females to mate out of season and range. The Native Inuit hunters who are permitted to hunt Polar Bears for subsistence (enabling the sport hunt, which may or may not benefit the Native economy, leading many Natives to support sport hunting) have come into sharp conflict with outside environmentalists. Welcome to the new Far North.
posted by fourcheesemac at 5:04 PM PST - 38 comments

Now there's a 1000$ worth cups of coffee. Beautifully done by the very talented Mike Harding.
posted by lipsum at 4:44 PM PST - 48 comments

French musical comedies 1918-1940 [French]. Non-French can still appreciate the programmes, photographs, music and videos.
posted by tellurian at 4:03 PM PST - 12 comments

RC Soles, the longest serving NC state legislator, aged 75, shot a young man who was allegedly trying to kick in the front door of his home in Tabor City. According to his 97 year old father,“It's a bunch of drunk heads and drug heads trying to force him to keep giving them money. That's my personal opinion.” But this is not the “younger” Soles first brush with scandal.
posted by Huplescat at 3:23 PM PST - 41 comments

Many of you have probably eaten a pluot, and you're probably aware that it's a cross between a plum and an apricot. But were you aware that there are also apriums , plumcots, and even a peacotum? Pluots, apriums, and the peacotum are all developed by Zaiger's Genetics, a family fruit breeder that is also responsible for the white nectarine (the plumcot is a much older cross, developed by Luther Burbank). [more inside]
posted by pombe at 3:09 PM PST - 36 comments

The Art of the Prank offers insights, information, news and discussions about pranks, hoaxes, culture jamming and reality hacking around the world. Includes topics such as The History of Pranks, The Prank As Art, and the Sociology and Psychology of Pranks. Get pranking. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 3:07 PM PST - 16 comments


"My name's Duncan. I was just a lonely 13-year-old with a rapid aging disease until I met..." Cakey! The Cake from Outer Space! [ episode 234567 ; each episode 4-5 minutes. Borderline NSFW. Must like talking cake. ]
posted by not_on_display at 1:34 PM PST - 17 comments

In addition to poor construction, the vehicles most likely to crash have 1) poorly secured bicycle wheels 2) a high center of gravity and 3) high occupancy. Add in alcohol, a steep down grade and spectators throwing water balloons, and you get the perfect storm for destruction.

This past weekend, the 13th Annual Adult Soapbox Derby (all slyt) was held on Mt. Tabor, an extinct volcano in Portland, Oregon. Cars built for speed can reach 40 mph, and cars built for art can be downright outrageous. [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski at 1:33 PM PST - 14 comments

Johnny Hallyday is perhaps best known to most Americans as French President Nicolas Sarkozy's BFF and "Special American Advisor" (and to younger French kids as that actor in the Optic 2000 ads), but his career started in 1960 and has only now slowed with what has been named his farewell tour. Though he began his career with many Aznavour-penned tracks, he swiftly became a household name by covering British and American hits and adapting them into French. [more inside]
posted by nonmerci at 1:30 PM PST - 29 comments



As George Carlin once said, "it is an infinitely more interesting news story for a team to repeatedly fail at the highest level than it is for them to finally win." After ten years and over 1,500 episodes, last night's Who Wants To Be A Millionaire (the US version) featured its very first Top Prize Loser. Ken Basin, of Los Angeles, incorrectly guessed that LBJ prefered Yoo-Hoo over Fresca, and walked away with $25,000 instead of $1,000,000. [more inside]
posted by Damn That Television at 11:13 AM PST - 81 comments

Introducing the blog of Tarot author Mary K. Greer. This week she posted a gentle takedown of Whoopi's psychic reading on The View. She recently initiated a discussion about the potentially exploitative practices of modern gypsy fortunetellers, based on a report by Al Jazeera. She's also begun posting examples of cartomancy in art and literature, including a wonderful interpretation of this unforgettable Gustave Doré painting (see the comments).
posted by hermitosis at 10:41 AM PST - 61 comments

Pan Am Flight 103 saw the death of David Dornstein (click for video as there's no direct link) - 25 years old, aspiring writer - and the manuscript to his unpublished novel scattered across the countryside and sea. His brother Ken set out to write the story of his life and death. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 10:01 AM PST - 23 comments


Mouse. No, not that one… hmmm, no, not this one either… this one. He’s a part of the Ganesh Charturthi Festival that’s taking place here, and you are all welcome to watch.
posted by hadjiboy at 8:43 AM PST - 12 comments


A Flapper's dictionary
posted by yegga at 1:21 AM PST - 70 comments


August 23


To clarify the "incident" at my Seattle signing. NSFW! - artist Alex Pardee deals with some crazy shit. (via)
posted by Artw at 11:05 PM PST - 89 comments

In his spare time, 'Grizzly Bear' fan and animator Gabe Askew created a compelling video [04:25] for the band's song "Two Weeks." Lead singer, Edward Droste, appreciates the fan video. [more inside]
posted by ericb at 9:31 PM PST - 20 comments


1500 hours of moving legobricks and take photos of them.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 5:30 PM PST - 98 comments

Today in the bottom of the 9th inning, Phils second baseman Eric Bruntlett scored an unassisted triple play against the Mets. It's only the fifteenth in MLB history. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:06 PM PST - 137 comments

The first Jewish member of the Revolutionary Council of Fatah talks about a unique political journey.
as the small number of white members of the ANC widened its legitimacy during the apartheid era in South Africa, other Jews can be attracted to participate in Fatah, transforming it into a broader-based movement that stands for equal rights for both Arabs and Jews in a federated state.
Uri Davis whose motto is Against Israeli Apartheid — for Freedom and Justice in Palestine.
posted by adamvasco at 2:57 PM PST - 82 comments


The Lonesome Stranger: An All-Monkey Western!
posted by Len at 12:09 PM PST - 22 comments


And I say: That little ole lonely elevator girl looking up sighing in an elevator full of blurred demons, what’s her name & address?” [more inside]
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:33 AM PST - 20 comments

In a press statement released this weekend the CEO of SIGG Switzerland, Steve Wasik admits that SIGG bottles manufactured before August 2008 used a liner that contained BPA (previously). [more inside]
posted by mdaugherty82 at 9:26 AM PST - 177 comments

Debt: The first five thousand years. Anarchist anthropologist David Graeber (previously) writes about "debt and debt money in human history" in Eurozine. Lots of thought-provoking stuff here; I'll put a sample in the extended description. (Via wood s lot.) [more inside]
posted by languagehat at 7:31 AM PST - 44 comments

Just as quietly as when they first voted on this, the Mexican government has decriminalized the possession of drugs for personal use. Associated Press's take. The official decree. Despite the understated release of the information, this is a sea change in Mexican policy and could very well be the beginning of a change in U.S. policy as well.
posted by Cobalt at 6:52 AM PST - 82 comments


Wise fwom your gwave! It's difficult to forget the tale of a warrior recalled from death by the gods to rescue Zeus's daughter from Neff the evil wizard by kicking demon dogs to death and climbing the muscular ranks to finally become a mighty fireball-hurling werewolf or an electric dragon.
posted by Servo5678 at 3:56 AM PST - 41 comments

Just in case you were wondering, yes, indeed, it is the people who dance to Zinli music in Benin who have the coolest, freshest dance moves on the planet. Once you get past the extended a cappella intro, and that delicious slow groove kicks in at the 3:26 minute mark, this video will treat you to some of the most undulating funky moves EVAR. Now, whether you wanna try some of these gyrations yourself, or whether you just dig a nice, slow, cooly percolating West African groove for listening, go here for more from singer Alekpehanhou the "Roi du Zinli Rénové". [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:36 AM PST - 16 comments

Welcome to District 9. Director Neill Blomkamp turns his sci-fi short "Alive in Joburg" into a full-length feature film - examining xenophobia in an allegory of Apartheid, set in a slum recalling District 6 of Cape Town in South Africa.
posted by crossoverman at 3:26 AM PST - 135 comments

August 22

One in 8 Million "New York is a city of characters. On the subway and in its streets, from the intensity of Midtown to the intimacy of neighborhood blocks, is a 305-square-mile parade of people with something to say. This is a collection of a few of their passions and problems, relationships and routines, vocations and obsessions. A new story will be added weekly." A photo and audio series from the New York Times. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 10:06 PM PST - 53 comments

Amazon: wtf
posted by madamjujujive at 9:50 PM PST - 121 comments

Galaxy Zoo 2: Help astronomers sort through 250,000 galaxies! The Sloan Digital Sky Survey found hundreds of thousands of galaxies which needed to be accurately classified; the original Galaxy Zoo project was a collaborative effort by tens of thousands of volunteers around the world to sort these galaxies into spiral and elliptical categories. Now, it's entered its second phase: describing the details of these galaxies. Read the tutorial, and then you can jump in and start classifying. [more inside]
posted by Upton O'Good at 9:10 PM PST - 6 comments

The world's new (allegedly) fastest production supercar. But does it exist? The Barabus TKR is an Italian supercar with a British powerplant which goes from 0-60 in 1.67 seconds. Looks like a Saleen S7 from the front, a Pagani Zonda from the rear. Designed to compete with the Bugatti Veyron ("the fastest, quickest, best handling, most luxurious grand touring [car]"), it costs nearly half as much and outpaces the Veyron by a significant margin. But, is it real? [more inside]
posted by R_Nebblesworth at 7:18 PM PST - 32 comments

The Longest Way Home is the site, blog, and photography galleries of a fellow who's spent the last four years walking all over the globe in search of a home.
posted by mattdidthat at 5:49 PM PST - 17 comments

Sure, every band geek has heard of the mythic contrabass sax. But I bet you didn't know there were contrabass clarinets and french horns or subcontrabass recorders, flutes, and... uh... this thing. On the other end of the spectrum you've got the sopranino recorder, saxaphone, clarinet, and ukulele.
posted by phrontist at 5:40 PM PST - 40 comments

This weekend the Obama family arrives on the Massachusetts' island of Martha's Vineyard for a week-long vacation. While known as a summer colony/destination for New Englanders, tourists and the famous1 the island has a storied history from its early pre-colonial days to today. The Obamas' visit highlights the island's proud connection to its deep African-American heritage as a "well integrated" community (especially Oaks Bluff)2 from the days that freed slaves and retired black whalers settled and established homes and businesses on the island. [more inside]
posted by ericb at 4:48 PM PST - 25 comments

A Sense of History (part 2, part 3), written and performed by Jim Broadbent (MLYT).
posted by The Great Big Mulp at 4:46 PM PST - 15 comments

Inglourious Basterds looks promisingly offensive, but it certainly doesn't appear to be the most offensive thing that could possibly be written as a comedy about World War II. No, for that, you'd have to have -- no, not Jerry Lewis, that won't do. Say it was based on a comic that was originally a webcomic. Say it was produced in one of the former Axis countries. And that it featured all of the major players as anthropomorphized stereotypes of those countries. And that these stereotypes were all young, attractive men who spent a lot of time with each other. Call it "Useless Italy" -- or, in Japanese, Hetalia: Axis Powers. [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena at 2:43 PM PST - 69 comments

fxgillis at the League of Ordinary Gentlemen tells "the stupid history of how the stupid Supreme Court and a stupid Congress wound up saddling us with such a stupid system for regulating the insurance market." [more inside]
posted by cimbrog at 2:33 PM PST - 9 comments

Regular mefites will know that The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain are renowned for having their wicked way with any piece of music that takes their fancy: from Smells Like Teen Spirit to the theme from The Good, The Bad and the Ugly nothing is sacred. On 18 August they played the 45th Prom of 2009 at the Royal Albert Hall: 6000 people were in the audience, of whom 1000 brought their own ukuleles — lessons provided by the BBC online for novice players — for a massed rendition of Beethoven's Ode to Joy. [more inside]
posted by pharm at 2:24 PM PST - 17 comments

Who has the greatest tree house ever? Architect Terunobu Fujimori in Chino, Nagano Prefecture, Japan. Or Jacob, from Nowheresville, USA?
posted by vronsky at 1:22 PM PST - 33 comments

What’s so special about the super cars that make people spend cosmic sums on a single car to buy it? Here are the Most Expensive Supercars: Exotic Showcase. Looking for cheap wheels? Here they are — the ten least-expensive 2009 cars on sale in America. But sticker price insn't everything; here are the 10 most and least expensive cars to insure.
posted by netbros at 10:37 AM PST - 57 comments

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported today that William Calley spoke to the Kiwanis Club of Greater Columbus on Wednesday. During his remarks he apologized for his role in the My Lai massacre.
“There is not a day that goes by that I do not feel remorse for what happened that day in My Lai,” Calley said. “I feel remorse for the Vietnamese who were killed, for their families, for the American soldiers involved and their families. I am very sorry.”
The Kiwanis gave him a standing ovation, the first time the club secretary recalls that happening. (Previously)
posted by ob1quixote at 8:47 AM PST - 106 comments

Timi Yuro, an Italian-American singer born in Chicago (where, the story goes, her nanny snuck her into clubs to watch singers like Dinah Washington and Mildred Bailey), was arguable the greatest blue-eyed soul artist of the '60s. [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 7:18 AM PST - 8 comments

Healthcare reform has agitated right-wing extremists and moneyed interests in the United States for some time — during the presidencies of FDR and Truman as well as Clinton and Obama, most recently — but where do the objections originate from, and particularly those which are known to be based on complete untruths? Some of these lies start with or are repeated by well-known right-wing media personalities, but there are other people who get the ball rolling, who are perhaps less well-known. Elizabeth "Betsy" McCaughey originated one of the current myths more commonly known as "death panels", but despite her attempts to market herself as a folksy voice fighting for the well-being of senior citizens, she has been an effective advocate for the interests of private health insurance companies since the early 1990s. [more inside]
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:43 AM PST - 167 comments

August 21

Jazz phenom/guitarist Pat Metheny is re-inventing the Orchestrion, using a team of engineers and all the gizmos they can hook together, to create the ultimate one-man-live-performance-band. [more inside]
posted by paulsc at 10:49 PM PST - 16 comments

Several Twitter-based games were launched during the world's first Literary Twestival: Flash Fiction, Collective Nouns, Pass the Plot, and Project Twutenberg (via).
posted by Mr. Palomar at 8:51 PM PST - 20 comments

Detonography is a technique created by Evelyn Rosenberg for making metal sculpture. Detonographs are created by detonating a sheet of plastic explosive over a sandwich of a carved image and a metal plate, forcing the metal plate onto the carved image. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 8:31 PM PST - 30 comments

The second annual National Go Topless Protest Day will be held this Sunday, August 23, in various American cities. It happens to be run by Raelians, members of a UFO religion founded by Rael, a former French sports-car journalist and test driver born Claude Vorilhon. (Coverage of last year's protest in New York City, which is, as one might suspect, NSFW.) Though the current "Go Topless!" site talks more about women's rights than Raelism, in 2004, Raelian women were marching topless not for the legalization of bare breastedness, but against "the repressive Myth of God." Don't remember the Raelians? This is just the most recent stunt by the publicity-hungry group that capitalizes on media-friendly controversy: in 2002, during the slow news week between Christmas and New Year's Day, they announced the creation of the first human clone, gaining what Rael estimated at over $500 million of free media coverage. In an interview, Rael unabashedly discusses his passion for publicity. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 5:21 PM PST - 63 comments

Star Trek... the first 29 episodes. These are the findings of the website tor.com. Its several week mission: to watch every episode; to summarize, rate and analyze; to watch with fresh eyes what many geeks have watched before.
posted by Artw at 4:57 PM PST - 73 comments

The Seven Deadly Sins by Dan Lydersen (on sale here [scroll down] with details and IDs of all references) is a modern homage to this work by Bosch. Bonus points if you identify the source of this post's title.
posted by yiftach at 4:54 PM PST - 15 comments

Cats for Clunkers? It had to be Michigan where the Humane Society is promoting its free cat adoptions like used car sales... That's right folks, Certified Pre-Owned Cats! Standard 4-paw Drive! 100,000 Purr Warranty! Made in Michigan and Better than New! But before you take that cat home, check out Catfax.org because nobody wants a lemonpuss. lol.
Found at Consumerist so it must be legit [more inside]
posted by wendell at 4:31 PM PST - 20 comments

Decades after it was written on the eve of World War II, a lost Poirot story by Agatha Christie has been found. Today it is published in the Daily Mail for the first time: The Capture Of Cerberus (scroll half way down the page). [more inside]
posted by lioness at 3:59 PM PST - 19 comments

Celebrate your Friday with Max Damage, the little scamp.
posted by nevercalm at 3:39 PM PST - 8 comments


While there are many ways to spruce up your home, I'm not sure making it look like you've got millions of dollars worth of gold in your garage is the best idea. A guarded portcullis would be more formidable, or maybe a jet.
posted by bbrown at 2:54 PM PST - 13 comments

In Hypermusic Prologue, physicist Lisa Randall re-imagines her extradimensional theories of the universe as opera, with a score by Hèctor Parra. Some more about this on YouTube (the last three are in french, but you can hear some of the music): Episode 1 (Randall speaks), Episode 2 (scenery), Episode 3 (the music), and Episode 4 (more scenery).
posted by twoleftfeet at 1:10 PM PST - 20 comments


Cute Girls With Mustaches
posted by vronsky at 12:20 PM PST - 86 comments

Two tattoo artists who go far beyond butterflies and tribal arm bands. Ryan Mason crafts lush pieces ranging from the sacrilegious to the hilarious to the literary. Amanda Wachoub has expanded fine art to the tattoo realm with her delicate watercolor-like works and conceptual bloodlines. [more inside]
posted by Juliet Banana at 12:09 PM PST - 35 comments

Kinpira is a shockwave-game where you play a baby samurai out to rescue his mother. You run around a 3d landscape, all of which you can pick up and throw, once you grow strong enough to lift it. To start with you're picking up vases and other light items but soon enough you're lobbing houses around and eventually entire mountains. It's vaguely reminiscent of Mario 64 and Katamary Damacy.
posted by Kattullus at 12:06 PM PST - 26 comments

Meanwhile in Hollywoodland, the trailer for James Cameron's much anticipated AVATAR debuted online yesterday and ... ooops! [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 9:53 AM PST - 190 comments

The quintessential gangfight of the 80s. Vintage afterschool specials, like wine, only get better with age.
On the day he enters Kennedy High in Manhattan wearing a patch over one eye, sixteen-year-old Horace Hobart is urged to join what he believes is the toughest gang at school.
Now you can enjoy the entire run of the 1985 CBS Schoolbreak Special, Ace Hits the Big Time. (1 2 3 4 5)
It's very likely the same minds were responsible for this scene.
posted by Christ, what an asshole at 9:31 AM PST - 38 comments


Medieval Gastronomy. Food, cooking and meals in the Middle Ages. [more inside]
posted by Ljubljana at 7:04 AM PST - 44 comments

Take three kids and a flute. Anne says the flute should be given to her because she is the only one who knows how to play it. Bob says the flute should be handed to him as he is so poor he has no toys to play with. Carla says the flute is hers because it is the fruit of her own labour. How do we decide between these three legitimate claims? [more inside]
posted by lucia__is__dada at 6:56 AM PST - 193 comments

You'll have all eyes on you with Winkers! (SLYT)
posted by ssmith at 6:33 AM PST - 51 comments


Harlan Ellison tears up the debate and J. Michael Straczynski speaks up on the topic. Oh, yeah there is also Herb Solow as well and his wife Yvonne (WTF) speaking on the subject "Science Fiction" over "SciFi". None of them saw SyFy coming back in 1997, that's for sure! (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by GavinR at 3:34 AM PST - 136 comments

New Zealand voters want to smack their children. 1.4 million New Zealanders (87.6% of votes cast) have voted "No" to the question "Should a smack as part of good parental correction be a criminal offence in New Zealand?". Regardless of opinion, this seemingly innocent question has been steeped in controversy. Voters have been confused, ambivalent, and perhaps misunderstood the law. The Prime Minister indicated he would ignore the result, and even the referendum initiators (intent on legalising smacking for corrective purposes) are divided on what the result means, some wanting explicit rights to use wooden spoons. [more inside]
posted by pivotal at 2:52 AM PST - 94 comments

Glenn Greenwald / Neil Barofsky

Hey! Can you tell us what they did with the money?

"Many banks were concerned about business-sensitive information and requested confidentiality of individual survey responses. Accordingly, pursuant to our legal obligations, SIGTARP is unable in this report to attribute any results or comments to a specific institution. However, SIGTARP is in the process of evaluating recipients’ claims of confidentiality and will provide copies of the individual responses that will include information provided by the banks to the maximum permitted by law. SIGTARP plans to post the responses, redacted as necessary, on its website within 30 days." [more inside]
posted by RoseyD at 2:48 AM PST - 21 comments

August 20

The Deadly Cost of Swooping In to Save a Life (single-page version): Deregulation and America's health care system combine to make medical helicopters increasingly dangerous.
posted by parudox at 9:53 PM PST - 28 comments

Songs in (computer) code (you can also see the Twheat seperated from the Tw-chaff over at Favrd)
posted by melorama at 9:12 PM PST - 32 comments


There was a historic music festival in the summer of 1969. But it's not the one that took place in Bethel, NY. The Harlem Cultural Festival ran from June 29 to August 24 that summer, presenting a concert every Sunday afternoon in Mount Morris Park (known today as Marcus Garvey Park). Three hundred thousand people turned out for the six free concerts, hearing acts like Nina Simone , Sly & the Family Stone (the only act to play both Woodstock and the "black Woodstock"), Stevie Wonder, Mahalia Jackson, The 5th Dimension, Moms Mabley and. Speakers included Jesse Jackson and "blue-eyed soul brother" Mayor John Lindsay. Security was courtesy of the Black Panthers, since the NYC police refused to provide it. Filmmaker Hal Tulchin recorded over 50 hours of concert footage, which has remained unreleased. Historic Films seems to hold the footage; it was supposed to be made into a movie to premiere at Sundance 2007, but its release seems to be continually delayed for reasons unclear. [more inside]
posted by Miko at 7:15 PM PST - 19 comments

Programmers may already know about the blogs of Jeff Atwood (Coding Horror) and Joel Spolsky (Joel on Software), or their increasingly-popular collaborative Q&A site Stack Overflow. Additional sites have been introduced recently for other audiences: Server Fault for system administrators and IT professionals, Doctype for web designers, and the just-out-of-beta Super User for "computer enthusiasts" (previously and inspired by). [more inside]
posted by Mr. Palomar at 5:31 PM PST - 40 comments

"Out of college money spent see no future pay no rent." Looking for a solution? Have your parents pay for an unpaid internship for you. Some students are skeptical.
posted by Xurando at 4:00 PM PST - 89 comments

Orbital skydives to follow inflatable heatshield success? "NASA has announced a successful live test of a prototype inflatable heat shield for re-entry to a planet's atmosphere. The blow-up shield could have important implications for future missions to Mars - and also, perhaps, for the nascent field of orbital spacesuit skydiving."
posted by homunculus at 3:47 PM PST - 27 comments

The first ever North American study into prescribing diamorphine to addicts was published today in the New England Journal of Medicine. And the outcomes are positive. This is the latest in a growing line of research studies into diamorphine prescribing. The Netherlands and Switzerland have both completed major studies that showed extremely positive outcomes in treatment resistant populations. Germany has recently begun a study along these lines, and a British study is about to report it's outcomes any minute now.

How often must a positive outcome be replicated before something becomes part of mainstream treatment provision?
posted by PeterMcDermott at 3:13 PM PST - 56 comments

The Millions, online since 2003, is a book blog of exceptional breadth and depth, and "an independent literature and culture publication that pays its writers." Until recently, that breadth and depth was hard to fathom, as the site had outgrown its infrastructure. Now, however, its excellent features are easy to find, as are series like The Future of the Book, Ask a Book Question, and The Millions Interview. Superb reviews can be found as they happen or in the Book Review Index, and, a vestige of when The Millions was a one man operation, you can find out what C. Max Magee, founder of The Millions, is reading on the Book Lists page. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 2:39 PM PST - 12 comments

Thank you Miles, but your apotheosis is in another castle. [more inside]
posted by felix betachat at 1:05 PM PST - 27 comments

In 1984 computer pioneer Ken Thompson wrote one of the seminal works of computer security, Reflections on Trusting Trust [PDF]. In it he postulated putting a trojan horse inside a compiler as a means of infecting software compiled by it. 25 years later somebody has finally done just that. Researchers at anti-virus house Sophos have discovered a virus that places a backdoor into applications compiled with the Delphi language. They've identified at least 3000 separate Delphi applications that have had this backdoor compiled into them so far, including banking programs and programs used for cellphone programming.
posted by scalefree at 12:30 PM PST - 52 comments

Joseph Brodsky: In Praise of Boredom -- from his Dartmouth College commencement address in 1995. " Boredom is your window on the properties of time that one tends to ignore to the likely peril of one's mental equilibrium. It is your window on time's infinity. Once this window opens, don't try to shut it; on the contrary, throw it wide open. For boredom speaks the language of time, and it teaches you the most valuable lesson of your life: the lesson of your utter insignificance. It is valuable to you, as well as to those you are to rub shoulders with. "You are finite," time tells you in the voice of boredom, "and whatever you do is, from my point of view, futile."
posted by vronsky at 11:46 AM PST - 38 comments

US News reports that in a new tell-all book, Tom Ridge admits manipulating terror threat levels for political motives. In the forthcoming book, Ridge reportedly acknowledges for the first time that he was pushed to raise the security alert on the eve of President Bush's re-election, something he "saw as politically motivated and worth resigning over." But as The Atlantic points out, Ridge apparently gave in to the White House demands anyway, resigning only after the election. Huffington Post also provides additional discussion on this developing story.
posted by saulgoodman at 11:36 AM PST - 139 comments

Personas is a part of the MIT Metropath(ologies) exhibit that scours the web for information and attempts to characterize a person based on an entered first and last name, showing visualizations of the process as it chugs along. [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 10:59 AM PST - 55 comments


Fifty years ago, those decrying rock 'n' roll as devil music that would crumble the morals of America needed to look no further than Wanda Jackson for evidence. Her raspy, brassy voice, suggestive lyrics, and sexual energy were almost unbelievable for the Eisenhower years. Coaxed into singing rockabilly by her then-boyfriend, Elvis, she had a string of rock hits, before marrying and IBM programmer and switching to more traditional, conservative country music.
posted by Jon_Evil at 10:49 AM PST - 23 comments

A well-dressed man wakes up in a Seattle city park. He has $600 in his sock and no memory of who he is or how he got there. He is fluent in English, French and German and has an apparent deep knowledge of European cultural history. He seems to have traveled the world. And he says he is a widower. Doctors suspect he is not faking it but they don’t know how to help. Police are stumped as well. [more inside]
posted by bz at 10:37 AM PST - 75 comments



Playing Half-Life with a real gun? The magic of drywall, accelerometers, and geeks. (SLYT.) Courtesy of the good people at Waterloo Labs.
posted by Tesseractive at 9:56 AM PST - 10 comments

The Second Amendment of the Constitution of United States of America gives us all the right to bear arms. It means that as Americans we can keep fire arms without governmental infringement. A few days ago many Americans chose to exercise this right at political Town Hall meetings on health care reform throughout the United States. Some are defending these actions. Others are not. The NRA is remaining quiet.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 9:28 AM PST - 255 comments

Saturday, September 26th, the Smithsonian museum family and their affiliates will be hosting a free admission event, if you go to their MUSEUM DAY site and print out the admission coupon. One coupon = 1+ admission. [more inside]
posted by FunkyHelix at 9:13 AM PST - 20 comments

Give the backup singers some! Ladies and gentlemen, it's... The Pips! [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:08 AM PST - 24 comments


The horrific end of banner ads! In preparation for Rob Zombie's Halloween II, The digital design agency Heavenspot declares war on the insipid animated people who live inside our banner ads.
posted by hermitosis at 8:05 AM PST - 48 comments


Can't Wait for Friday Flash Fun: Cyclomaniacs is a bicycle racing game. Pretty self explanatory (GO FAST AND SPIN A LOT!) and fun.
posted by schyler523 at 7:30 AM PST - 18 comments

August 19



the worlds longest poem... I have a twitter account, I hate twitter... but this, somehow, this might define.... well...something..
posted by HuronBob at 7:36 PM PST - 45 comments

Can game theory predict when Iran will get the bomb? Bruce Bueno de Mesquita thinks yes. (Previously)
posted by djgh at 6:57 PM PST - 31 comments

Primiti Too Taa is an animated excerpt from Kurt Schwitters' Ursonate. You can see the whole text, and hear the whole thing as voiced by Schwitters or many others, including a text-to-speech program and the author of Eunoia. [more inside]
posted by kenko at 5:45 PM PST - 11 comments


In programming, as in life, you find those who's turn a mundane task and turns it into art. In the Ruby world one of those people goes by the psuedonym of why the lucky stiff or simply _why. _why's Poignant Guide To Ruby [PDF - large, and still worth a look] is an almost transcendent look at what a programming book can be, full of cartoon foxes and wizards and even a soundtrack. _why didn't really care about making a mint off of his work instead deciding he wanted to get kids excited about programming, in a way that they could understand, teaching them by "fated appointment only" [Vid Link, 30 mins and fun]. He created a whole framework designed to make it easy for kids to get into programming called Hackety Hack. Today for some reason _why's online presence, sites and code have disappeared from the inter tubes and nobody knows _why. Though some believe its because someone pierced the veil and found his real name but many wonder if he didn't get hacked
posted by bitdamaged at 4:30 PM PST - 85 comments

Sweet! The Crookedest Street in the World was turned into a giant Candy Land game today, to celebrate the board game's 60th anniversary. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4 [more inside]
posted by zarq at 4:18 PM PST - 26 comments

Movie Award Leftovers (SLYT) from FatalFarm
posted by blue_beetle at 3:20 PM PST - 15 comments

The Women’s Crusade: Why Women's Rights Are the Cause of Our Time.
posted by homunculus at 3:10 PM PST - 39 comments


A High Tech Building for New Orleans: ‘New Orleans Arcology Habitat’ or NOAH by E. Kevin Schopfer [more inside]
posted by SamsFoster at 2:23 PM PST - 56 comments

A piano has 88 keys; Ohio has 88 counties. Cartographer Andy Woodruff noticed this fact while driving through Ohio to complete his Counties Visited Map, and decided, despite knowing nothing about music, to make a map based on this coincidence.
posted by yiftach at 2:01 PM PST - 29 comments

Let's Panic About Babies! "Fortunately for everyone in the whole wide world, Alice Bradley and Eden M. Kennedy have created the only website that accurately explains the journey from morning sickness to third-degree tears to keeping that baby alive for a year–or more! LET’S PANIC ABOUT BABIES will serve as a salve to the mystery and degradation of this most female of challenges. Its authors may not have 'science' on their side, but what they do have is far more valuable: a heady mélange of female intuition, sentence-forming know-how, and the achingly vivid memories of their own gestational journeys and unending motherhoods. So join Alice and Eden as they tell you exactly what to think and feel and do on every one of your 2,681 days* of pregnancy. They know everything! * 'Science' would tell you that human gestation is actually, on average, 266 days. This is one of many ways in which science is terribly wrong." [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 1:27 PM PST - 63 comments

A superhero in a fez (video link) gets an organic artificial hand and fights a pinball sarcophagus in a world reminiscent of Heavy Metal and La Planète sauvage. Music by Birdy Nam Nam. Video animation directed by Steve Scott.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 12:18 PM PST - 11 comments

Eggs And Sausage (In A Cadillac With Susan Michelson) a typographic music video by graphic designer Jackie Lay. Via.
posted by mattdidthat at 11:53 AM PST - 5 comments

Nerd Boyfriend
posted by vronsky at 11:27 AM PST - 78 comments

How Could This Happen to Annie Leibovitz? "This" being broke-ass-broke. More or less.
posted by chunking express at 11:03 AM PST - 112 comments

Creative beggars
posted by CunningLinguist at 10:35 AM PST - 35 comments


Kiss shreds, as do The Stones. [more inside]
posted by hellbient at 10:08 AM PST - 19 comments

You'll have to pry this mailbox from our cold, dead hands. At a time when a disgruntled few are turning up at town hall meetings around the country with assault rifles to defend America from the potential threat of health care reform bringing "socialism" to our doorstep, at least one small town in Maine seems to be saying, "Free markets be damned! We want access to our favorite government service whether it makes economic sense or not."
posted by saulgoodman at 9:57 AM PST - 48 comments

Don Hewitt has passed away
posted by jsavimbi at 9:15 AM PST - 34 comments


"It turned out 30 employees were let go that day. The Dirty Thirty. Back in March, 30 others were let go. And before that, 25 were shown the door. ‘All difficult but necessary actions’ we were told in a group staff meeting following the first cuts. Then the company stopped convening staff meetings to talk about its problems ... Kevin, my manager for five years and editorial director at the organization, never said a word to me. No goodbye. No handshake. No apology. No compassion. Nothing." Matthew Newton on job loss. (Part I, Part II)
posted by geoff. at 7:30 AM PST - 77 comments

Many TV-savvy Canadians will be familiar with the distinctive painted exclamation mark of the Concerned Children's Advertisers. For nearly 20 years, the CCA has partnered with broadcasters across the country in order to produce and air PSAs aimed at kids. This has resulted in some classic spots on such topics as drug use prevention, media literacy, and more recently a series on the importance of fitness. A personal favorite: the alternately endearing and terribly creepy Don't You Put It In Your Mouth (feat. Scary, Anemic Lion). [more inside]
posted by Monster_Zero at 6:51 AM PST - 13 comments

Theodore Olson was the 42nd United States Solicitor General, serving from June 2001 to July 2004. He also was attorney general during the Ronald Reagan administration, where he defended Reagan during the Iran-Contra affair. He appeared before the Supreme Court fifty-five times as solicitor general, most recently arguing Bush's side in the case Bush V. Gore which decided the outcome of the 2000 election. He is a member of the Federalist Society, which seeks to reform constitutional law to bring it more in line with an originalist interpretation of the constitution, and was on the board of The American Spectator magazine. But his current case, which he says could be the most important case of his career, has many fellow conservatives scratching their heads. Because Theodore Olson is going to argue before the Supreme Court in favor of overturning California's Proposition 8 and thus legalizing same-sex marriage.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 6:37 AM PST - 57 comments

Mother Nature vs. Cars A local newspaper's dream come true. Cars in the aftermath of weather events.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:30 AM PST - 11 comments

After ending the 2007 season for Green Bay with pretty much every passing record in the NFL and a Super Bowl win under his belt, Brett Favre announced his retirement in a tearful press conference. He later rescinded his retirement to play for the Jets in 2008. Citing an aging body unable to stand up to the rigors of another season, he retired again after last season. Despite rumors of moving to the Minnesota, he was still officially retired as late as July. Well, not anymore. He’s back, and playing for the rival Vikings. Needless to say, the move has made him an arch- villain in the town that built him into a legend. [more inside]
posted by jadayne at 6:10 AM PST - 51 comments



It's always a hoot to look through old issues of Popular Mechanics and Popular Science, and with Google Books you can now do just that! But what do you get if you mix an eternally medieval city with eternally hopeful futurists? You get these mags' interesting take on Venice, Italy! Through their pages, you see the 20th century slowly but surely arrive to the canal city (or not, as sometimes the case may be...) [more inside]
posted by Misciel at 3:14 AM PST - 3 comments

Grab your John Deere hat and your Asian girlfriend! Metafilter's most hated music website is telling you what the 500 best songs of the 21st century are! [more inside]
posted by bardic at 12:22 AM PST - 147 comments

August 18

ECCEROBOT - Embodied Cognition in a creepy looking Compliantly Engineered Robot, an anthropomimetic robot whose plastic bones and joints imitate the body structures of the fleshy ones.
posted by Artw at 10:08 PM PST - 17 comments

The Great Flu — "Even at the lowest difficulty this game delivers a sense of just how hard it is to handle and contain the spread of a dangerous virus." (via)
posted by netbros at 9:16 PM PST - 28 comments

Are the ties that bind gay men to straight women beginning to fray?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:47 PM PST - 99 comments

A warm up for Avatar: James Cameron's student film, Xenogenesis. Part one. Part two.
posted by Bobby Bittman at 8:12 PM PST - 12 comments

Dissertation Haiku
posted by Miko at 8:09 PM PST - 34 comments


Suburban farming, an idea whose time may have come. Short and sweet SLYT from the Wall Street Journal about people growing herbs and vegetables in their own yards in American suburbia.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:52 PM PST - 64 comments

In 2004, the Stardust mission passed through the tail of comet 81P/Wild (aka Wild 2); in 2006, that captured comet dust was returned to Earth. Now, researchers have found glycine, one of the amino acids in proteins, in that cometary material. [more inside]
posted by nonspecialist at 5:49 PM PST - 34 comments

The Woodstock Festival ended forty years ago today, on August 18, 1969* -- and roughly, um, two years later, Marvel Comics was there! Writer Gary Friedrich and (wildly overqualified) artist Gray Morrow bring you an improbably cleanly tale of romance that first appeared in issue #14 of Marvel's My Love (November 1971): "It Happened at Woodstock!" (Guest-starring Janis Joplin, among others.) [more inside]
posted by kittens for breakfast at 4:43 PM PST - 17 comments

"The average video gamer is not the stereotypical adolescent locked to a computer screen 24/7."* According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Emory University and Andrews University: "A new study [PDF] says the average age of video-game players in the United States is 35 [PDF], and oh, by the way: They're overweight and tend to be depressed." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 4:11 PM PST - 63 comments


Steampunk is OK, but I prefer Victorian Lowbrow.
posted by JoanArkham at 3:13 PM PST - 17 comments

Fun with sandwiches.
posted by gman at 3:04 PM PST - 31 comments

Ronald McDonald is so-o-o last year. The new McDonalds mascot in Japan is "Mr. James", a nerdy white guy from Ohio who speaks broken Japanese in the new ads for their "Nippon All Stars" sandwiches. Here's his blog (copyright McDonalds), translated by Google. FRANCA (Foreign Residents And Nationalized Citizens Association) want MickeyD's to dump him. Those Wacky Japanese!
posted by wendell at 2:54 PM PST - 61 comments

Land's End: Photographer and writer Christopher Grabowski documents the fading industrial towns of the British Columbia coast. Interview, and some of his other Photo Essays at Geist Magazine.
posted by Rumple at 1:48 PM PST - 11 comments

Banknotes are a fascinating look into the artistry and culture of the countries of the world. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 1:06 PM PST - 20 comments


Two girls, one bike. SLYT, SFW. One bike starts at 2'25".
posted by unSane at 12:10 PM PST - 71 comments


What you don't know about your friends: The problem, [Francis Flynn, a psychology professor at Stanford] says, is that interacting with people and sharing experiences with them doesn’t necessarily translate into knowing lots of things about them. The main hurdle is the way we talk to those we’re close to: our conversations are usually meant not so much to gather information as to establish rapport and to bond - in short, to make friends.
posted by Korou at 11:11 AM PST - 69 comments

Paul Tschinkel is the producer and director of the series called ART/new york. -- After showing video pieces in New York galleries, he turned to the fledgling New York cable system (Manhattan Cable downtown and Warner Cable uptown), producing a half hour weekly arts program - a gallery on television. From 1974 to 1979 Paul Tschinkel's Inner- Tube was devoted to conceptual and narrative video art pieces. [more inside]
posted by vronsky at 10:48 AM PST - 4 comments


The Play-Generated Map and Document Archive: finally providing a place to put all those odd doodles, detailed maps, and character sketches that come out of your weekly gaming sessions. [more inside]
posted by Scattercat at 10:08 AM PST - 28 comments

A video playlist of the entire 'Feed the Animals' album by Girl Talk, aka mashup wunderkind Greg Gillis. [more inside]
posted by FatherDagon at 10:04 AM PST - 35 comments


Robert Novak, "The Prince of Darkness," died at his home early Tuesday. He was 78. [more inside]
posted by T.D. Strange at 9:15 AM PST - 168 comments


Running is actually good for your knees, if you haven't suffered knee injuries in the past. [D]espite entrenched mythology to the contrary, runners don’t seem prone to degenerating knees. An important 2008 study, this one from Stanford University, followed middle-aged, longtime distance runners (not necessarily marathoners) for nearly 20 years, beginning in 1984, when most were in their 50s or 60s. At that time, 6.7 percent of the runners had creaky, mildly arthritic knees, while none of an age-matched control group did. After 20 years, however, the runners’ knees were healthier; only 20 percent showed arthritic changes, versus 32 percent of the control group’s knees. Barely 2 percent of the runners’ knees were severely arthritic, while almost 10 percent of the control group’s were.
posted by caddis at 8:03 AM PST - 81 comments

How American Health Care Killed My Father After the needless death of his father, the author, a business executive, began a personal exploration of a health-care industry that for years has delivered poor service and irregular quality at astonishingly high cost. It is a system, he argues, that is not worth preserving in anything like its current form. And the health-care reform now being contemplated will not fix it. Here’s a radical solution to an agonizing problem. (via mr) [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 6:40 AM PST - 144 comments

The Road to Moloch. A short film. Will the genre of rag-tag band of (battle-hardened soldiers/sex-crazy students/escaped convicts) stumbles upon (cave in the desert/cabin in the woods/house on the hill) and unearths (unspeakable zombie terror/undead apocalypse/soul stealing demons) ever get old?
posted by jadayne at 5:48 AM PST - 13 comments

Do You Wanna Date My Avatar? The Guild (previously) releases a music video prior to the start of Season 3. Direct youtube link. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 12:35 AM PST - 69 comments

August 17

The Views From Your Sickbed: Andrew Sullivan's readers share stories about health care in the United States.
posted by lalex at 11:47 PM PST - 65 comments

Why you shouldn't text while driving (NSFW, dramatic reenactment of a car accident) [more inside]
posted by flatluigi at 10:40 PM PST - 117 comments

Animals isolated in dystopian tableaux.
posted by tellurian at 10:39 PM PST - 23 comments


Ahmet Ertegun was profiled by George W. S. Trow in The New Yorker in a classic piece back in 1978. Ertegun was the son of the Turkish ambassador to the US and he remained behind in D.C. studying medieval philosophy at Georgetown. Instead of devoting himself to his studies he founded Atlantic Records with his friend Herb Abramson. Trow charted how Ertegun moved from tramping through muddy, Louisiana fields in search of hot new sounds to the whirl of Studio 54. Below the cut are links to the songs mentioned in the article, as best as I could find, in the order in which they appear. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus at 6:42 PM PST - 25 comments

Civil War reenacting is so 2002. Vietnam reenacting is the new black. But really, if reenacting is your thing, you've got lots of wars to choose from.
posted by billysumday at 4:42 PM PST - 59 comments

Bicycle Inflation in Paradise? Freakanomics looks at used bike prices in Portland. Interesting reading.
posted by fixedgear at 3:10 PM PST - 135 comments

Three female US soldiers talk about their experiences in the military. (sound starts automatically) [more inside]
posted by gman at 2:27 PM PST - 102 comments

You've seen the national anthem sung at baseball games, but have you ever heard the national anthem played on a baseball bat? (SLYT)
posted by ZenMasterThis at 1:20 PM PST - 33 comments

Amusement (French Vogue meets Nintendo Power) takes iconic video games and discovers their origins. Jean-Yves Lemoigne fantasizes about pixels (NSFW?). Game couture?
posted by geoff. at 12:22 PM PST - 16 comments

A car graveyard in Kaufdorf, near Bern is home to 500 abandoned and decaying cars mostly from the 1930's to 1960's. It has not been touched for over 30 years and has some rare flora and founa. The opportunity to take stunning photographs is unparalleled, but it is causing environmental issues which results in an auction this September. It was a struggle between history, nature and European law. History and nature lose. [more inside]
posted by kudzu at 12:09 PM PST - 21 comments

Years have passed since Zarkon's invasion of Arus. A team of Space Explorers approaches the planet. Young but determined, these explorers have been sent by the Galaxy Alliance on a special mission: to search for the secret of Voltron. The team of explorers consists of five brave young (brick)men: Keith, Pidge, Hunk, Lance, and Sven. Together, with 71 hours of building, they form Lego Voltron. From work in progress to cockpit details and shoulder pin mechanisms, the photographed details are there to enjoy. The builder includes credits to the Teknomeka plans for the frame of the structure (history of the plans, models, and another model) (via).
posted by filthy light thief at 11:36 AM PST - 35 comments

The unexpected (possible) history of the world's most famous typeface. Mike Parker, former head of typographic development at Morgenthaler Linotype, has challenged the standard history of Times New Roman. The typeface, Parker claims, wasn't designed by "the great persuader" Stanley Morison and Victor Lardent of Monotype in 1931, but rather thirteen years earlier by an American, William Starling Burgess, an airplane and yacht designer, published poet, and naval architect who married five times and whose daughter, also named Starling Burgess, described him as “a bird of paradise in a family of English sparrows.” By the time of that statement, she no longer shared his name, but had become the celebrated children's author Tasha Tudor. (via)
posted by ocherdraco at 11:32 AM PST - 46 comments

The Sad Song (single link Vimeo video)
posted by empath at 11:02 AM PST - 18 comments




Historic Bridges of the U.S. This is the most complete database of historic bridges I've seen. The front page is blog style that seems to have an emphasis on preservation, and which links to a database that is actively being updated & expanded. You can search by state or by county, and look at each bridge's individual page, including a wealth of stats, and a high-res photo, when available. [more inside]
posted by Devils Rancher at 8:05 AM PST - 31 comments

The One Wheeled Vehicle was Charles F Taylor's invention that culminated in the development of working prototypes. The site contains 3D models and animations explaining the concept. With no electronics, the machine was stabilised electro-mechanically with the use of the humble gyroscope, but the One Wheeled Vehicle is certainly not the only example of a "Gyro-Car". The Brennan Gyro-Monorail is surely worth a mention, as is the 1961 Ford Gyron, and the wonderful Schilovski Gyrocar [previously]
posted by mattoxic at 8:04 AM PST - 17 comments




In the grim darkness of the future, there is only war. Space Hulk returns. [more inside]
posted by WinnipegDragon at 6:39 AM PST - 82 comments

See What You Think. Information Is Beautiful.
posted by SinisterPurpose at 5:49 AM PST - 33 comments

August 16

On August 16, 2008, a small plane carrying a young married couple and their flight instructor crashed in the Arizona desert. Doug Kinneard, the instructor, was killed in the crash; Stephanie and Christian Nielson survived, both severely burned. Prior to the crash, Stephanie's weblog, the NieNie Dialogues, "had attracted a small but ardent following, thanks to its upbeat dispatches about marriage, home décor, entertaining and the art of raising four children ages 6 and younger." After the crash, with burns on over 80% of her body, she spent two months in a medically induced coma. One month later, she was released from the hospital (link to Stephanie's sister's blog); one month after that, she began blogging again. Stephanie's posts since then have chronicled her gradual recovery, her re-integration into her family, her love and gratitude for her husband, and, finally, on the one-year anniversary of the plane crash, herself. [more inside]
posted by granted at 7:16 PM PST - 61 comments



"This is an America that has transferred its allegiance to spectacle, to pseudo-events, that no longer can determine what is real and what is illusion, that confuses how they’re made to feel with knowledge, that confuses propaganda with ideology, and that’s exceedingly dangerous. All totalitarian societies are image-based societies, and that’s what our society has become."
posted by plexi at 2:20 PM PST - 127 comments

Sonic Adventures An astonishingly thorough history of Sonic The Hedgehog taking in the games, animated series and more. [more inside]
posted by feelinglistless at 1:48 PM PST - 25 comments

The history of needle exchanges in the United States starts in 1986 with Jon Parker, a dyslexic Yale medical student and former IDU (intravenous drug user), who was arrested time and time again for providing sterile needles and supplies to drug users, to prevent infection and spread of disease. David Purchase started the first organized (and illegal) needle exchange in Tacoma Washington in 1988, which still exists 21 years later. [more inside]
posted by circle_b at 1:37 PM PST - 42 comments

Judee Sill (previously) was the first artist signed to David Geffen's first record label Asylum. She released a couple of albums. No one really noticed. She died, another casualty of drugs. Her music, however has been covered many times: The Hollies Riko Shinahara The Fleet Foxes Plattel robin pecknold Cass Elliot Graziano Romani And Judee Sill doing a cover of her own.
posted by dortmunder at 11:47 AM PST - 10 comments

The Obama administration signaled today it is ready to entirely abandon the public option, i.e. giving Americans the choice of government-run health insurance (AP, Daily Kos, Politico, Hill). Further, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius indicated that end-of-life counseling was "probably off the table", presumably due to Republican "death panel" commentary.
posted by WCityMike at 11:32 AM PST - 491 comments


Digg Labs' Arc is a mesmerizing data visualization flash with an ongoing collage of various topics, a sort of animated zeitgeist: How to bake cheeseburger cupcakes l Who is funding the Afghan Taliban? You don’t want to know l The Newest Giraffe: As Cute As He Thinks He Is? l Wascally Wabbits l Stories arrange themselves around the circle as users digg them.
posted by nickyskye at 7:33 AM PST - 11 comments

What happened to the Trainspotting generation? Heroin and Scotland: the relationship continues.
posted by peacay at 7:19 AM PST - 51 comments

Video Pizza
posted by minifigs at 4:45 AM PST - 29 comments


UCTV is on YouTube. Watch a feature on Claude Shannon. Or load an hour-long-plus lecture on the evils of fructose onto your iPod. There's apparently 3403 more videos to watch . . .
posted by @troy at 3:48 AM PST - 18 comments


August 15

The Curse of Cheddar Bay and Boy Toyz. Utter nonsense which I thought pretty funny. Double link Youtube, both created by the same people.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 9:00 PM PST - 5 comments


The New American Dream: Renting
The Wall Street Journal goes into the history of homeownership in the US and discusses why it just may not be for everyone.
posted by educatedslacker at 7:01 PM PST - 89 comments

Potbellies: the fashion must-have hipster accoutrement for the summer, according to the NYTimes. Rebuttal from Flavorwire. via reddit
posted by rottytooth at 6:52 PM PST - 70 comments

Tonight ends the 15th annual Woodward Dream Cruise, where tens of thousands of classic cars, muscle cars, hot rods, and more cruise Woodward Avenue in Southeast Michigan. [more inside]
posted by brandman at 6:18 PM PST - 9 comments


Memphis music legend Jim Dickinson has died. Dickinson's full credits are as impressive a resume as you'll find over the past 40 years: session player for many, including the Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Aretha Franklin. Producer for albums by Jason and the Scorchers, Big Star, the Replacements, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, and Mudhoney. Among his survivors are sons Cody and Luther of the North Mississippi All-Stars. His death comes one week after a benefit show in his honor headlined by John Hiatt. R.I.P., Jim.
posted by Ufez Jones at 4:59 PM PST - 25 comments


A new Radiohead track has leaked. [more inside]
posted by nosila at 2:07 PM PST - 79 comments

Amazing zoomable images of the Extended Groth Strip and Orion Nebula.
posted by paradoxflow at 2:02 PM PST - 39 comments


Squid and Owl is a poetical, scientifical, graphical design project by John Holbo. Kind of Dr. Seuss meets Dave Eggers meets Bill Nye the Science Guy. [via Bruce Schneier's Friday Squid Blogging series]
posted by silby at 9:35 AM PST - 6 comments



At just age five, Brooke Breedwell and Asia Mansur were bitter arch-rivals, the top dogs in their age group on the Southern child beauty pageant circuit. The two were even featured in the 1995 documentary Painted Babies [2 3 4 5]. When the two were seventeen, the director of Painted Babies returned to see what kind of women they had become (the resulting documentary is linked under "more inside"). Several days ago, Brooke Breedwell spoke about the impact that beauty pageants had on her life in an interview taped for Good Morning America. [more inside]
posted by SkylitDrawl at 3:24 AM PST - 43 comments

Return of the Militias; an article by Larry Keller for the Southern Poverty Law Center.
List of Militia by State; Map of Hate Groups by State. (Constitutional Militia).
posted by adamvasco at 2:37 AM PST - 109 comments

August 14

Two Jersey Shore cops stop Bob Dylan, taking an afternoon walk in Long Branch, NJ. Neither recognizes him. He has no I.D with him. but the situation is soon peacefully rectified. At least he didn't start up with them like he might have long ago.Don't think twice, it's alright.
posted by Seekerofsplendor at 11:59 PM PST - 173 comments

Photos recreating vintage video games and some other stuff.
posted by msalt at 11:19 PM PST - 16 comments

Stagmags.com - vintage men's magazine cover scans. (slightly NSFW) [more inside]
posted by gman at 7:11 PM PST - 52 comments

The Electronic Frontier Foundation has published a criticism of Burning Man, LLC's Terms and Conditions, saying that the automatic rights assignment to BMOrg for photos & video taken during the event is "creative lawyering intended to allow the BMO to use the streamlined “notice and takedown” process enshrined in the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to quickly remove photos from the Internet" and that this is corrosive to our freedom of speech. Burning Man responds.
posted by scalefree at 6:14 PM PST - 123 comments

After serving 18 months in prison, Michael Vick is back in the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles. He has expressed remorse for his dog-fighting past. Vick's back on track, so what happened to his dogs? Many of them are doing pretty well, too. [more inside]
posted by jeoc at 5:15 PM PST - 239 comments

Bing realised combining random tweets with random Dinosaur Comics panels was a good thing. Then Idefex took it a step further. And now you can too.
posted by minifigs at 4:50 PM PST - 18 comments

The complete and until today unaired pilot of South Park for Comedy Central, with an additional creator's commentary track. About 90% was recut into the first episode, "Cartman Gets an Anal Probe," but with a few slightly altered scenes and characters. After gaining underground popularity with two shorts that you've all probably seen already at this point, Trey Parker and Matt Stone were contracted by Comedy Central to produce a full pilot episode for a potential show based on the shorts. This pilot episode is what would ultimately lead to a series that is now 12 years old, spans over 180 episodes, and is one of the most successful shows in the history of cable television both in ratings and revenue. The pilot is also the only episode in the series that, like the original shorts, uses stop-motion animation of paper cutouts instead of computer software.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:06 PM PST - 24 comments

Molds On Foods: Are They Dangerous? Finally a US government agency tells us all what's OK to eat after it's gotten moldy.
posted by GuyZero at 4:00 PM PST - 53 comments

Tane. Happy friday!
posted by whir at 4:00 PM PST - 26 comments

Saturday Night Live Auditions (all YT links): Phil Hartman, John Belushi, Dana Carvey (2), Will Ferrell, and Jim Breuer (2), (3).
posted by Ufez Jones at 3:25 PM PST - 28 comments

Noted street artist Shepard Fairey wants his "brick unadorned". When a local blogger posts about Fairey's building being sandblasted, and covered with an anti-graffiti coating, Fairey responds.
posted by lilnemo at 3:15 PM PST - 53 comments

50 NES Quotes Every Gamer Should Know. A full index after the break. [more inside]
posted by Afroblanco at 2:17 PM PST - 51 comments

"Aberrant behavior had nothing to do with wearing love beads (59%), believing in Flower Power (64%), going to a "Be-In" (58%), or flashing the peace sign to complete strangers (81%) -- maybe only a sublime silliness..." -- Rex Weiner [more inside]
posted by Twang at 2:11 PM PST - 24 comments

Ah, the old head in the toilet prank. Gets 'em every time. Not to be confused by the most toilet seats broken by the head in one minute. Or the toilet monster.
posted by billysumday at 1:54 PM PST - 17 comments

Twitter documents the breakdown of Calvin Harris , British electropop musician due to critical reviews. [more inside]
posted by ashaw at 1:46 PM PST - 93 comments

Free Friday Frantic (Music) Fun: Ergo Phizmiz & The Midnight Florists cover five 1990s chartbusting, dancefloor filling smash hits with arrangements of acoustic, electronic, homemade, and toy instruments. [More musical mischief inside] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:21 PM PST - 7 comments

thesixtyone is a site for the "democratization of music": tunes submitted by artists are voted up and down by users, digg-style. Standard Web 2.0 bling (Creative Commons, RSS and Twitter feed) is integrated with some nice features, including keyboard shortcuts and in-browser visualisation.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 1:04 PM PST - 15 comments

Jon Armstrong, owner of Blurbomat and husband to Heather Armstrong of Dooce interviews Former Congressman Henry "Buck" Chucklesworth Hamilton Armstrong about tough subjects. The Former Congressman seems to be a man dog of few words.
posted by specialagentwebb at 12:22 PM PST - 15 comments



"In the summer of ‘71, The Rolling Stones, seeking shelter from their UK tax woes, exiled to the South of France. Keith Richards set up house with Anita Pallenberg and their son Marlon in Villa Nellcôte– a 16 room waterfront mansion that once served as Gestapo headquarters for the Nazis during WWII. The infamy continued with it now best remembered among rock fans as the grand flop-house where Exile On Main Street was recorded." More photos.
posted by dersins at 10:59 AM PST - 38 comments

Top 100 search terms of the <18 crowd during summer. If you're Glenn Quagmire, don't read this. All others, continue! An article with at least superficial credibility (they admit kids search for porn, etc.) about what kids, tweens and teens search for online. Randomness includes Megan Fox, Walmart, Youtube and Naked Girls. (And Craigslist. What the hell do kids need on Craigslist?)
posted by ShadePlant at 10:49 AM PST - 75 comments


Central Massachusetts, sometime in early 1985. You were cranking your way through the UHF dial when you caught a glimpse of Rock and Roll. It was V66, and you were hooked. [more inside]
posted by dirtdirt at 10:32 AM PST - 22 comments

The Ulterior Epicure takes amazing pictures of food. "If he must travel to visit a restaurant and can eat there only once – especially if there’s no tasting menu – he calls well in advance to ask if the chef can prepare a special multi-course menu just for him." (Detroit Free Press) Collection by states. Saffron Brioche at Joel Robuchon at The Mansion. Soupe aux Truffes Noirs at Paul Bocuse.
posted by geoff. at 10:00 AM PST - 28 comments

Your World of Text is an infinite grid of text editable by any visitor. The changes made by other people appear on your screen as they happen. Everyone starts in the same place, but you can scroll through the world using your mouse. [more inside]
posted by grobstein at 9:52 AM PST - 85 comments

Dinner at El Bulli: The Best Restaurant in the World. a comic book style guide with videos.
posted by boo_radley at 9:35 AM PST - 45 comments

Comic Confrontations: Judge Judy vs. Glenn Beck. Tracie at Jezebel imagines Judge Judy Sheindlin delivering smackdowns to various deserving recipients. [more inside]
posted by peep at 9:17 AM PST - 17 comments

Faulkner Friday: William Faulkner's connection with the University of Mississippi was a varied one, including a stint as an abysmal postmaster. Regardless, Ole Miss has put together a vast website dedicated to the writer. Learn about his life, his family tree, his home at Rowan Oak, and even a FAQ for those common questions. Learn about his novels, his short stories, and his poems. And if that's all old hat, how about information on his work in Hollywood, a source of academic resources on the writer, a listing of other websites on Faulkner, and lastly, a page of trivia, quotes, and quizzes.
posted by Atreides at 8:48 AM PST - 7 comments

Dolphin-headed artist Nate Hill has riled his Brooklyn neighbors by delivering bags of candy crack in the wee hours, just like a real drug dealer (he has moved on from giving FREE BOUNCY RIDES).
posted by hermitosis at 8:05 AM PST - 76 comments

Silent conversation, a truly beautiful flash game that has you trying to touch as many words of a poem as you can. (Yes it does have Williams Carlos Williams) [more inside]
posted by litleozy at 7:34 AM PST - 16 comments

George Brett, baseball Hall-of-Famer, has had an illustrious career. But even great men can have truly humbling experiences. Luckily, George is the kind of guy who isn't ashamed to discuss HIS humbling experience at great length (Language NSFW). And it's good to know that there is no tale so tragic that it can't be turned into a catchy song (Language and hilarity NSFW).
posted by FatherDagon at 6:44 AM PST - 27 comments

Derailing for Dummies: A helpful tome for any time you want to win an Internet argument.
posted by TrishaLynn at 5:48 AM PST - 75 comments

Physics Games is a collection of browser games that all have at least a rudimentary physics model. Some of the games I've enjoyed are Roly Poly Eliminator, Totem Destroyer 1 & 2, Demolition City and Red Ball. Most are fairly simple but some are complex, notably IncrediBots 1 & 2, which might as well require an engineering degree (slight hyperbole). My absolute favorite type of game on this site is the destroy-castles-with-a-trebuchet game, handsomely represented by not one but three games, Castle Clout, Castle Clout: Return of the King (no Tolkien connection) and Crush the Castle. All this is but a small sample of what's on offer.
posted by Kattullus at 4:09 AM PST - 21 comments

Some recent photographs by the renowned photojournalist Emilio Morenatti, Newspaper Photographer of the Year in 2009, who recently lost his foot in a bomb blast in Afghanistan. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 3:40 AM PST - 19 comments

Fancy a coffee with Dominic West? Rather tasty British actors in slightly ridiculous soft focus sell instant coffee, using sexy literature. [more inside]
posted by tiny crocodile at 3:10 AM PST - 58 comments


August 13

Filament aims to be a different kind of women's magazine. They plan to "cover a wide range of topics [but absolutely no beauty or diet articles] that inspire and engage , and [give women] gorgeous boys the way [they] like to see them." Their first issue is out and featured a mix of articles, fiction, poetry and pics of shirtless boys. For their second issue, they want to include a pic of a man with erection, but their printer bailed because the printer was afraid of a backlash. The magazine has also had issues with distributors because many of them don't want to deal with a women's magazine with a man on the cover. Via (NSFW) Erotica Cover Watch (NSFW) which is a blog dedicated to ending the preponderance of (naked) women on the covers of erotic books, and is trying to get more men and couples on the covers.
posted by nooneyouknow at 8:49 PM PST - 82 comments

Operation Find Don Sarah Bunting, founder of Television Without Pity and Tomato Nation (previously mentioned) renews her quest to find Don, her companion and guardian angel through Lower Manhattan on 9/11. [more inside]
posted by Sweetie Darling at 8:42 PM PST - 29 comments


Singles, a wonderful animation by young artist Rebecca Sugar.
posted by archagon at 4:42 PM PST - 31 comments

Yet another 20th century English author in bed with the communists? Literally, in this case - Arthur Ransome might be best known for his 'Swallows & Amazons' books about children sailing in the idyllic Lake District, but before all that, he left his first wife (and a libel case that got him mixed up with Oscar Wilde's lover, Lord Alfred Douglas) to study fairy tales in Russia... only there he fell in love with Leon Trotsky's private secretary, ended up working for the Bolsheviks and also MI6. [more inside]
posted by Sifter at 4:03 PM PST - 35 comments

Partake of the bread in the hands of Dr. Ronald Chevalier, author of all 10 Cyborg Harpy Trilogies. Allow him to irrigate your barren earth with fresh dreams. Learn the Art of Relaxating, or how to explode a creative atomic bomb inside your mind. Do not overlook the sublime excerpt from him upcoming Cyborg Harpies audiobook. [more inside]
posted by Midnight Rambler at 3:49 PM PST - 9 comments

For your entertainment, the music of DJ Jester the Filipino Fist joined with visuals by Samaro (aka Kid Kotex): River Walk Riots, the video (includes NFSW moments of blue cartoon nudity and some vocal profanity). Originally made in 2001, the rediscovered video is part of DJ Jester's River Walk Riot mixcd, because of which he met renowned turntablist Kid Koala. The Filipino Fist joined Kid Koala, P-Love, and Lederhosen Lucil in the 2003 "Short Attention Span Theater" Tour. The three turntablists took the stage in separate sets, and joined forces (as seen here in 5 parts: Stompin' At Le Savoi, Nufonia Must Fall: Page 275, Drunk Trumpet, Skanky Panky, and N.M.F. Page 298). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:15 PM PST - 15 comments

When Zombies Attack!: Mathematical Modelling of an Outbreak of Zombie Infection [pdf] (via)
posted by brundlefly at 12:03 PM PST - 65 comments

Cleveland, Ohio, c.1932: A young American writer named Jerry Siegel teamed up with a young Canadian artist named Joe Shuster to create science fiction comic books. Out of this collaboration, a superhero was born. In 1938, the duo sold their creation to Detective Comics, and the rest, as they say, is history. Ten years and several lawsuits later, Siegel and Shuster, after being fired from the company they had helped to build, signed on with a fledgling comics publisher called Magazine Enterprises. Once again, their collaboration yielded fruit. But... would lightning strike twice? Sadly, it would not.
posted by Atom Eyes at 11:09 AM PST - 62 comments

Performance, it's the name of the game. (SLYT) For cyclists who are sick of being associated with hipsters on fixies, this track is for you (and me).
posted by Premeditated Symmetry Breaking at 10:57 AM PST - 85 comments

Les Paul, musician, pioneer of multitrack recording, and creator of one of the most successful and recognizable guitars in history, passed at the age of 94. [more inside]
posted by mrg at 10:05 AM PST - 169 comments


Strip away the instruments, and Pet Sounds is even more gorgeous. No autotune. No digital editors. Just an analog 8-track tape deck and a surfeit of musical brilliance. God only knows where Brian Wilson got his skills.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:38 AM PST - 101 comments


The economy is abjectly terrible, right? It's so bad that nowadays, a picture is only worth 200 words. On the other hand, the recession is over in Germany and France, and in the United States, the unemployment rate dropped just a smidgen last month. [more inside]
posted by malapropist at 8:18 AM PST - 39 comments

San Francisco's Black Exodus. Since the last report in 1990, San Francisco’s Black population has dropped by 40 percent, faster than any other major city in the country. In an effort to reverse the loss, Mayor Gavin Newsom started the African American Out-Migration Task force in 2007. [more inside]
posted by lunit at 7:57 AM PST - 27 comments

GLAAD recently published their third annual GLAAD Network Responsibility Index, evaluating networks on the quantity, quality and diversity of images of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people on television. The SyFy (Sci-Fi) channel was given an F rating for their failure of their depiction of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) characters. In response, the head of the SyFy network promised to be more diverse. [more inside]
posted by FunkyHelix at 7:44 AM PST - 250 comments

Jazz pioneer Rashied Ali Has died. He leaves behind him a lifetime of collaborations in out jazz, with artists like Ayler, Coltrane, Cherry, Haino, Laswell, Bley, Sanders, and Ulmer. [more inside]
posted by idiopath at 7:37 AM PST - 21 comments

Why Exercise Won't Make You Thin Whether because exercise makes us hungry or because we want to reward ourselves, many people eat more — and eat more junk food, like doughnuts — after going to the gym.
posted by dgaicun at 6:35 AM PST - 167 comments

Lori Samsel's Get in the Van (trailer, gallery, testimonials) is a space out masterpiece 25 minute greenscreen live-action/animation/puppet exercise video set to chiptune electronic music by Desert Planet, 8bitpeoples Twilight Electric, Plasticflesh, and others that will take your dimension to another dimension. The entire video in all its blown out seziure inducing over the top eye candy beep boop beep glory can be downloaded (550meg .avi, divx codec) from archive.org. [more inside]
posted by psychobum at 6:20 AM PST - 8 comments



Most frequent flyer programs are kind of a raw deal: seats are often severely limited, many popular dates are blocked and fees can be steep. But there are exceptions: JetBlue just came out with an All-You-Can-Jet Offer. $599 gets people unlimited travel anywhere on their network for a month beginning September 8th and seats are not limited. The idea isn't new: American Airlines used to sell a Lifetime AAirPass through the Neiman Marcus catalog, which offered unlimited travel on any AA flight in any class. Unfortunately, it cost a cool $3 million.
posted by krautland at 4:40 AM PST - 24 comments

August 12

John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods Market (WHMI) writes a Wall Street Journal op-ed about teh evil Obamacare. Customers seem to disagree with his stance, and are reviewing their options.
posted by georg_cantor at 8:55 PM PST - 347 comments


Should the United States and Nato stay in Afghanistan? Andrew Bacevich wrote an article in commonweal saying that it is not and that the question has been insufficiently debated. Andrew Exum (A former US Army Captain, now researcher who blogs as Abu Muqawama out of the Center for a New American Security) quickly responded to Bacevich saying that the issue has been carefully debated, pointing to a Stephen Biddle article entitled Is It Worth It? as an example. As MeFi's may appreciate, the comments section of that post vigorously debated the point and an Exum has started an ongoing dialog at the abu Muqawama site. Resolved, day 1, day 2, day 3, day 4, day 5.
posted by shothotbot at 6:45 PM PST - 30 comments

China’s wild west Considered journalism on the historical and political background to the recent inter-ethnic violence in Xinjiang.
posted by Abiezer at 6:28 PM PST - 9 comments

Glowpinkstah gives lessons on how to do your makeup in a wide variety of styles: Emo, ganguro, chola and others.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 6:19 PM PST - 38 comments


"This is Romeo Foxtrot. Shall we Dance?" Killer Drones to get sound system. Many different broadcasts were tried, including the celebrated “Wandering Soul."
posted by wallstreet1929 at 6:03 PM PST - 6 comments

Shoot It! Create and mail a real [paper!] postcard from anywhere and to anyone around the world.
posted by ColdChef at 5:37 PM PST - 34 comments

Chuck Norris opens beer cans by biting off the top. If Chuck Norris runs into a bear in the woods, the bear flees in terror. Chuck Norris is legendary, to say the least. But how will he fare in his greatest challenge? Chuck Norris is now blogging about politics.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:32 PM PST - 63 comments

"Uh oh, They're here": A Washington Post editorial about Elisha Strom, who blogged about the Jefferson Area Drug Enforcement Task Force in northern Virginia with intensity and focus, displaying officers' photos, their cars, and in one now-gone entry, one officer's home. For this on July 16 she was arrested. [more inside]
posted by waraw at 3:47 PM PST - 94 comments

Everyday Miracles: Medical Imagery in Ex-Votos "The expression of our relationship with illness is wonderfully illustrated in the ex-voto, a devotional painting giving thanks to a saint or deity for a miraculous healing or a blessing. The faithful have always used prayer to invoke the aid of saints as a means to heal the sick and end one's suffering. These devotional paintings are an individual's expression of thanks for the intercession of the divine in a crisis, a snapshot in time of illness and healing. They offer a rare opportunity to view health, healing, and illness through the hearts and minds of the ordinary person." Anatomy::Italian Tradition::Mexican Tradition::Early Medical Guides::Gallery (click for larger) More Mexican antique ex-votos HERE [ some favorites]
posted by vronsky at 3:42 PM PST - 7 comments

North Korea’s Dollar Store - Office 39, North Korea’s billion-dollar crime syndicate, pays for Kim Jong Il’s missiles and cognac. Why did the Bush White House choose not to shut it down? [via] [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan at 2:53 PM PST - 27 comments

John Anealio records songs inspired by science fiction and fantasy. Sing along about Cylons, Summer Glau (Firefly/Serenity), Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, and about how "George R.R. Martin is not your bitch" (previously).
posted by gemmy at 2:47 PM PST - 20 comments

The University of Washington Library's Early Advertising of the West, 1867-1918. [more inside]
posted by mudpuppie at 1:14 PM PST - 24 comments

In august of 1979, Philip Schneider was working as a government Geologist building secret military bases when he became involved in an underground battle with alien Greys which left 67 secret service and military personnel dead. [more inside]
posted by jadayne at 1:11 PM PST - 43 comments

The Humanthesizer. Calvin Harris is promoting his new single by using a type of skin-safe conductive ink to "play" his song with the assistance of, ah, several assistants. [more inside]
posted by Halloween Jack at 1:06 PM PST - 29 comments

After the Remote Area Medical (RAM) Expedition visited Wise County in rural Virginia, they made their next stop at the Fabulous Forum, in urban Los Angeles.
posted by jaimev at 1:03 PM PST - 14 comments

Package design: more compelling than you think. From medicine to matches to spices to cookies to vitamins to paper bottles, this blog highlights interesting packaging. (And because it features their products far better than the non-profit store websites do, check out the fun wares from LA's Time Travel Mart, San Francisco's Pirate Supply Store, Brooklyn's Superhero Supply Store, and Ann Arbor's Robot Repair and Supply, previously discussed here on Metafilter.)
posted by CunningLinguist at 12:41 PM PST - 29 comments

Hulk-Margaret smash stupid Sony. Girls not stupid lilac people. Girls strong and awesome! AAAAARRRRR! Hulk-Marg like gems. Hulk-Marg like gem sweaters (previously). But Hulk-Marg no like pandering only to gem interests. Hulk-Marg well-rounded, has many interests and layers. Hulk-Marg give example: SMASHING. Let Hulk-Marg find PowerPoint and laser pointer. Hulk-Marg has PowerPoint here somewhere. Ahem. Hulk-Marg found PowerPoint. Made slides. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 12:35 PM PST - 53 comments

The Ozone Nightmare is a podcast which ascends and degenerates with such regularity that listening is like riding the sine wave of thought itself.
posted by SinisterPurpose at 12:21 PM PST - 7 comments

You've heard of the Swedish Pirate Party. You may have seen their their elected MEP, and their 50,000 members. You may even have heard of the German Pirate Party's thousand members. But now the Open Rights Group does not stand alone in the UK's digital rights movement. On June 30th, the British Pirate Party was registered. Press reaction is here. [more inside]
posted by jaduncan at 10:40 AM PST - 47 comments

The beautiful artwork of the Tibetan people.
posted by hadjiboy at 10:20 AM PST - 7 comments

51 Things is a YouTube vlogging meme. Here are a few of the more interesting videos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10
posted by rageagainsttherobots at 9:24 AM PST - 36 comments

When you think of Hinduism, you probably don't think of suburban Lilburn, Georgia, yet it is home to BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir, at over 30,000 square feet the largest Hindu temple in the world outside of India. The beautiful temple was assembled from 34,000 pieces of Turkish limestone, Indian pink sandstone, and Italian Carrara marble hand-carved by some 1500 craftsmen in India, then shipped to Georgia, where about 900 volunteers put in over a million man-hours to bring the architects' vision to fruition (YT), at a cost of about US$19m. [more inside]
posted by notashroom at 9:16 AM PST - 36 comments

In a similar vein to Progress Quest, but (slightly) more interactive, is... Linear RPG. [more inside]
posted by FatherDagon at 7:52 AM PST - 54 comments

While we may be tuning in, Earthlings haven’t done much to deliberately broadcast messages to space (unless you count the Voyager gold record). Now you can send a 160 character message towards Gliese 581d, the nearest known earth-like planet.
posted by Brodiggitty at 7:37 AM PST - 85 comments

Possibly NSFW: The human penis, its life cycle, size and myths about it, why it looks like that, what can go wrong with it and last but not least, the anatomy.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:32 AM PST - 72 comments

AREA MAN TAKES lOWERCASE l PROBlEM INTO OWN HANDS AND INSTAllS OWN CORRECTIVE SIGNAGE
posted by joeclark at 7:28 AM PST - 62 comments

Scott Horton discusses the latest reports about the pending appointment of a torture special prosecutor with Keith Olbermann. Last week, British judges revealed that the British Secret Services fed questions to the CIA in the full knowledge that the Agency was systematically using torture in interrogations; a clear violation of international law. Meanwhile BBC Newsweek airs "Confessions of an Uzbek KGB officer". Shortly after 11.00 mins in the video Yakobov refuses to comment more on Secret Rendition claiming his life could be in endangered. In a Sept. interview Yakubov's most interesting evidence is that he accompanied a CIA man to an interrogation, and that the CIA man was actually in the room during the torture of a detainee.
bradblog attempts to unravel the web of deceipt.
posted by adamvasco at 6:29 AM PST - 11 comments

This weekend marks the 40th anniversary of Woodstock, or to give its official name, the Woodstock Music & Art Fair, a little get-together held at Max Yasgur's dairy farm in Bethel, New York. It's not like Woodstock hasn't been picked apart to death for every year around this time, but since this is the 40th year since it happened, there seems to be more than the usual nostalgia fest going on. [more inside]
posted by thread_makimaki at 3:19 AM PST - 117 comments

A giant carnivorous plant found only in Mount Victoria, Palawan in the Philippines, has been named Nepenthes attenboroughii, after renowned British naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough.
posted by Lush at 3:06 AM PST - 33 comments

August 11

"Mountain chickens have very peculiar breeding habits" "Alien-like" scenes of tadpoles feasting on eggs emerging from their mother have been caught on camera. The footage marks the success of a captive breeding programme for the critically endangered mountain chicken frog, one of the world's largest frogs. (BBC) Not for the easily squicked.
posted by longsleeves at 10:43 PM PST - 31 comments


Peter Guo was held by Chinese police for 16 days, but managed to get himself released. Peter's Twitter profile, blog.
But what lesson can be learned from my experience? I think the most important factor is strong command of the use of Internet, especially Twitter and modern tools for communications.
posted by awfurby at 7:58 PM PST - 12 comments

Three Japanese Techno-Pop Bands rock it back-to-back-to-back on a kid's show. [SLYT]. The bands, in order, are P-Model, Hikashu, and Plastics. You're welcome.
posted by SansPoint at 7:38 PM PST - 22 comments

Dinosaur coloration has always been a source of wild speculation. Artistic renders have ranged from the conservative (battleship grey, lizard green) to the flamboyant, but all guesses appeared equally valid. While there are some wonderfully preserved examples of dinosaur skin texture, fossils have remained stubbornly monochromatic… until now. [more inside]
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 5:48 PM PST - 62 comments

Bigipedia--it's like listening to Wikipedia on the radio--is also available on the web (for those of you whose radios do not support multiple-voice broadcasts).
posted by not_on_display at 5:06 PM PST - 15 comments

"In a hotel room in Florida during the summer of 2008, we were given an exciting preview of a "Nintendo Mixtape" by burgeoning rap group, No Question? As we listened, we felt like Mario must have felt during his first ingestion of a fire flower. In other words, we knew immediately that this was some good shiz." [more inside]
posted by kableh at 12:41 PM PST - 58 comments

Slate gives you effective strategies for taking on bullies. It's a good article. More interesting, though, is the sidebar, aimed at an altogether different kind of bully. [more inside]
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:39 PM PST - 124 comments

Hiking, biking, boating, fishing, shooting and more: "The Times of Our Lives." Wonderful scans of vintage photos of the 1950's and 1960's (uh, and 80's) from flickr user aroid. [via]
posted by dersins at 12:38 PM PST - 7 comments

August 11th marks the coming of Spring to Saturn's northern hemisphere, when the 170,000 miles wide rings turn edge-on to the sun and reflect almost no sunlight. The rings are only some 10 meters (30 feet) thick and made of mud and ice. As Saturn shifts towards its once every 15 year equinox, out-of-plane structures will cast long shadows across the rings' broad expanse, making them easy to detect (previously). Though you can't see the rings with the unaided eye, professional and amateur astronomers have captured the gas giant in its transition towards the equinox.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:17 PM PST - 28 comments

Concept proposals for Seattle's Space Needle. More sketches and images, from the University of Washington's image database. Erecting The Needle, a four-part series about the Space Needle's construction: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, with a picture of the rarely-seen gas-flame beacon in action. And this morning, the Space Needle was briefly for sale!
posted by mattdidthat at 11:35 AM PST - 40 comments

"Humanity craves but dreads autonomy." – Without Guilt & Justice by Walter Kaufmann argues that decidophobes employ ten strategies in order to avoid indecisive dizziness. He cites Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn as an individual who demonstrated autonomy through "the most awesome courage".
posted by ageispolis at 11:33 AM PST - 30 comments

The King of Crayons
posted by jtron at 11:24 AM PST - 27 comments

With inadequate access to basic health care (WHO .doc summary), impoverished Afghans turn to cheap and available opium as 'medicine' for pain relief, cough suppression and other ailments. The level of addiction among children is at a critical level. Jawed Taiman's film Addicted in Afghanistan provides some further perspective. [more inside]
posted by uaudio at 10:38 AM PST - 35 comments

There are few things a man needs in life: a sense of purpose and ambition, a clean bill of health, and a fully detailed hand-sewn puppet of himself. Puppet Artists, Marnie & Bill Winn, create soft sculpted puppets that range from real people (from their photographs), to celebrities, to storybook and fantasy characters. PA also makes similarly detailed sets of 4-inch-tall finger puppets. (via)
posted by netbros at 10:38 AM PST - 19 comments

The Lobotomist (PBS American Experience) - During his illustrious career as a self-styled neurosurgeon, Walter Freeman performed nearly 3500 lobotomies. [Inspired by this thread] [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan at 10:04 AM PST - 73 comments

Lego Says No to Spinal Tap. (NYT link). Lego has told Spinal Tap they cannot show a fan-created Lego film in their upcoming Unwigged and Unplugged DVD.
posted by Man-Thing at 9:55 AM PST - 52 comments

The Unnamed Streets of Crown Heights. Another scintillating journey through NYC's back alleys with the movie scout from Scouting NY.
posted by mattbucher at 9:08 AM PST - 25 comments


"Even though my glory years of competitive spelling are long past, some things stay with a person. As I explore, I can't help but notice signs which contain spelling errors. I capture them for posterity with my handy digital camera and present them here for our collective education and entertainment." Thirty-two pages of misspelled signs in the New York metropolitan area -- each one lovingly annotated.
posted by milquetoast at 8:29 AM PST - 50 comments

collegehumor imagines a young lady bringing a n00b boyfriend home to her l33t parents (SLCH). That is all.
posted by krautland at 7:58 AM PST - 28 comments

Mike Seeger, folk musician and folklorist, passed away on August 7, 2009. Half-brother to Pete Seeger, Mike Seeger was self-taught at banjo, fiddle, guitar, autoharp, and dulcimer, among other instruments. Additionally, Seeger spent decades traveling the country to collect and document American folk musicians, many of whom would have been forgotten were it not for his efforts. In the late 50's, Seeger, Tom Paley, and John Cohen founded the old-time string band The New Lost City Ramblers. The Ramblers countered the rising tide of bluegrass music with a return to old-time traditionals and were a significant influence on the mid-century folk revival. Seeger's death coincides with the upcoming release of an Arhoolie Foundation documentary about the Ramblers (warning: the documentary link contains an embedded video). On Youtube: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. [more inside]
posted by signalandnoise at 7:53 AM PST - 20 comments

If you loved the 80's cartoon and toys, you owe it to yourself to see a true rendering of the Joes as re remember them with an all-star cast: The Ballad of G.I. Joe (SLFunnyorDie). With Julianne Moore as Scarlett and Billy Crudup as Zartan. [more inside]
posted by jabberjaw at 7:45 AM PST - 29 comments


Alex Ross examines the 800-page FBI file of Leonard Bernstein. (single page print link.)
posted by NemesisVex at 6:07 AM PST - 30 comments

"Let me win, but if I cannot win let me be brave in the attempt." Eunice Kennedy Shriver has left a lasting legacy. In the 1962, Mrs. Shriver started a summer day camp in her back yard which would become Special Olympics only eight years later. The first official Special Olympics games brought together 1,000 athletes from 26 US states and Canada. Special Olmpics has grown to more than 3 million athletes with local organizations in each US state and national organizations from 181 countries. [more inside]
posted by onhazier at 5:59 AM PST - 51 comments

As Earth continues its pass through the debris field left by periodic Comet Swift-Tuttle on August 11 and 12, the annual Perseid Meteor Shower could deliver a double peak and a brief period of up to 200 meteors per hour. [more inside]
posted by IvoShandor at 12:30 AM PST - 35 comments

August 10

"That was one of the most memorable scenes for me. Namely because his expression made it look like he wasn’t terrified of the fact he was hanging, but what was watching him hang." System Shock 2, the highly influential sci-fi horror game, was released 10 years ago today. [more inside]
posted by Askiba at 10:01 PM PST - 84 comments

Dorian Corey was the articulate elder stateswoman of the New York City ball scene featured in the 1990 documentary Paris is Burning. When she died in 1993, police found the body of a murdered man 15 years mummified in her apartment. [more inside]
posted by nosila at 10:00 PM PST - 46 comments

Ethnography of Rock Band Bar Night. The Rock Band video game (and the similar Guitar Hero) are more than video games where players try to earn points and some are exploring the deeper meaning of such games. [more inside]
posted by k8t at 9:56 PM PST - 16 comments

Ice cream makes most people 'happy!' Some would say 'gay!' This summer many in New York are enjoying [audio | 02:59] the 'Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.' [more inside]
posted by ericb at 5:01 PM PST - 63 comments

Barbara Ehrenreich, the author of Nickel and Dimed, has for the past two months been writing a series of opinion essays in the New York Times that discuss poverty, both new and entrenched. The pieces, so far, are "Too Poor to Make the News," "A Homespun Safety Net," and "Is It Now A Crime to Be Poor?" [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 2:50 PM PST - 77 comments

Health Insurance Reform Reality Check. The White House has just launched a new site to attempt to counter concerns arising from the various factual distortions, misrepresentations and wild-eyed fears that some participants in the ongoing health care reform debate have loudly been voicing lately. [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 12:50 PM PST - 276 comments

Multi - polarity in Eurasia. Pepe Escobar on Iran, China and the New Silk Road 1 & 2
Iran and China just signed a $3 bn. deal for China to help develop Iran's refinery capacity in Abadan and the Gulf. ( previous )
posted by adamvasco at 10:47 AM PST - 16 comments

The Adam Hughes Corollary to the Gene Siskel Movie Test - “Before making a movie based on a licensed property, ask yourself: is this movie going to be less entertaining than just Googling for Adam Hughes drawings of these same characters?” [more inside]
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 9:52 AM PST - 113 comments

Atticus Finch and the limits of Southern liberalism. An essay in the latest The New Yorker by Malcolm Gladwell. "Atticus Finch is faced with jurors who have one set of standards for white people like the Ewells and another set for black folk like Tom Robinson. His response is to adopt one set of standards for respectable whites like Boo Radley and another for white trash like Bob Ewell. A book that we thought instructed us about the world tells us, instead, about the limitations of Jim Crow liberalism in Maycomb, Alabama."
posted by billysumday at 8:15 AM PST - 188 comments

Abdelrahman Zeitoun is a Syrian American businessman who spent the days after Katrina paddling around New Orleans in a canoe, saving elderly people and feeding stranded pets. His efforts were brought to a halt when he was detained by the Bush administration on suspicion of being a terrorist. [more inside]
posted by reenum at 7:14 AM PST - 30 comments

Walk the Line as it should've been. SLYT
posted by item at 3:32 AM PST - 86 comments

Seizure is an art installation by Roger Hiorns (Introducing his work in a YouTube video); "75,000 litres of copper sulphate solution were pumped into the council flat to create a strangely beautiful and somewhat menacing crystalline growth on the walls, floor, ceiling and bath (Flickr sets) of this abandoned dwelling." First opened in late 2008, the deliberately temporary work can be viewed by the public (free) again, thanks to a delay to development at the site in the current economic downturn.
posted by Abiezer at 1:45 AM PST - 44 comments

August 9

World Wars 2, sequel to the hex-wargame-inspired World Wars, has been released. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious at 11:54 PM PST - 24 comments

You can rank U.S. colleges by subjective, random methodologies. Or, you can rank colleges by what really matters: how much money you'll make after you graduate. [more inside]
posted by jabberjaw at 11:23 PM PST - 71 comments

The 2009 Hugo awards have been announced at Worldcon. Winners include Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book for best novel, Ted Chiang getting best short story and Elizabeth Bear getting best novelette. Best Related Book was snagged by MeFi's own jscalzi. The award for best semiprozine, which was to be scrapped, has been saved, this year being won by Weird Tales - a surprise upsets as it's main problem was that it had essentially become the Locus magazine award for best Locus Magazine. As well as the Hugos other awards such as the Prix Aurora award for best Canadian SF and the Chesley Awards for SF art have been announced, and Cory Doctorow accepted the Prometheus award for Libertarian SF. Convention reporter provides continuing coverage (the convention still has another day to run) and Starshipsofa spin-off Sofanauts has an excellent series of podcasts with regular Amy H. Sturgis and others reporting from the con.
posted by Artw at 10:58 PM PST - 63 comments

Costumed patriots channel forefathers: coming to a civic center near you! Need a little pump up music?
posted by sredefer at 10:53 PM PST - 12 comments

In 1999 and 2000, and again from 1995 to 1997, the BBC's Roy Mallard travelled across Britain documenting the everyday lives of ordinary citizens--people like us--for a documentary series with the odd title People Like Us, to show that these everyday peoples' ordinary lives are indeed just like ours, or us, and we, like theirs, or them.
Sample episodes in the series: Actors 1234 / a Vicar 123 / Freelance Photographer 123 / The Pilot Episode, which turned out to be the final episode 123 / [Wikipedia] [more inside]
posted by not_on_display at 8:55 PM PST - 20 comments

URL shortening service trim is closing its doors trim has committed to maintaining URL redirects till the end of 2009 sorta previously
posted by device55 at 8:54 PM PST - 90 comments


British Department of Health releases LR Hubbard Docs The British government has released documents compiled to expose Scientology's founder as a fraud. [more inside]
posted by HotPants at 6:50 PM PST - 79 comments

To launch their new "all black" away strip, English premier football side Everton hired a dance troupe perform a "flippant" version of the Maori haka with English lyrics. Ngati Toa, the iwi of the chief Te Rauparaha who penned the haka "Ka mate" performed by the All Blacks, have in the past attempted and failed to trade mark it to prevent commercial use (and misuse), and have had the issue addressed in their Treaty of Waitangi settlement. This follows controversy over the Spice Girls, an alcopop company, Italian models for Fiat, and the Royal Shakespeare Company all performing the haka inappropriately. And Jean Paul Gaultier deploying the moko on models in a French collection. Opinion over the Everton haka is naturally divided. Previously: Lego faced criticism for using Maori names for its Bionicles range, and we talked about the haka and about cultural IP.
posted by szechuan at 6:44 PM PST - 90 comments

Dead Snow (SLYT)
posted by ZenMasterThis at 6:17 PM PST - 43 comments

The Ragpicker's Dream (Short). World at Work: Brazilian Ragpickers. What it feels like to be a Ragpicker. Their contradictions, and a mobile home for them to sleep in.
posted by hadjiboy at 6:09 PM PST - 3 comments

Me Le Se and Dance Medley - live clips of King Sunny Ade and his African Beats in Seattle last month just before being inducted into the AfroPop Hall of Fame. More clips from the show ... [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive at 4:45 PM PST - 11 comments

Stunning Conceptual Alternative Design for the New Museum of Contemporary Art Tower
posted by SamsFoster at 3:25 PM PST - 44 comments

Modern Furniture Designs. Innovative and unique furniture has twists and turns, literal and conceptual ways of breaking from contemporary conventions and modern regularity. These creative furniture designs go beyond merely innovative, crossing boundaries of industrial, furniture and architectural design, using new methods and materials along the way.
posted by netbros at 11:58 AM PST - 15 comments

I've just finished reading ____________. Type in the name of the book you've just finished, and The Book Seer will provide recommendations for your next read.
posted by plexi at 11:43 AM PST - 68 comments


Expanding Mind - "This week's guest is Dennis McKenna, ethnobotanist, expert in the pharmacology of ayahuasca and other visionary plants, and brother of legendary mushroom bard Terence McKenna." (via) [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 5:55 AM PST - 32 comments

Samantha Beeston , a young British artist, won the Textprint illustration prize this year. Except she allegedly did it with Lauren Nassef’s work. Since the accusations of plagiarism have come to light – including a fake sketchbook from Beeston – both her website and mention of her award on the Textprint website have mysteriously vanished.
posted by mippy at 2:03 AM PST - 57 comments

Yahoo!'s Christian Crumlish puts forward five principles of good social software design, and five anti-patterns, or ways to get it wrong. [more inside]
posted by acb at 1:32 AM PST - 59 comments

August 8


In 1948, Nat King Cole had a hit with "Nature Boy," a haunting song that sounded wholly different from anything else on the radio. Cole came across the song in an unusual way: its sheet music had been left for Cole at the stage door of one of his performances. When he searched for its author, what he found was a hippie before hippies existed, a man named eden ahbez who was a long-haired wanderer living under the L in the Hollywood sign, and who wrote the song about his own life. Watch ahbez and Cole tell the story of how the song came to be (part 2). [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 10:31 PM PST - 48 comments


First seen on the web this week, posters have sprung up in LA and Atlanta. Interesting discussions on the Washington Post.com site. Lots of different ideas about the posters and their meaning. Tampa Bay Times takes up the debate.
posted by garnetgirl at 7:46 PM PST - 127 comments


Disney's Man and the Moon (1 of 6). One-horned unigoats versus SCIENCE! featuring Werner von Braun who, to the nose adds a small atomic reactor in preparation for [cue dramatic music] a trip around the moon. [via]
posted by tellurian at 5:14 PM PST - 11 comments

In the early 1990s, John Lurie videotaped his vacations with William Dafoe, where they did their own comedic re-interpretation of an early-morning fishing show. From this tape (or possibly so his fishing trips could be tax write-off), Fishing with John was born. The show is a series of six episodes (segmented on YouTube), each at a different location with a different fishing friend (though Lurie's trip through the Andaman Sea with Dennis Hopper spans the last two episodes). The show, called by some fishing as performance art, is pared with a soundtrack that is a mix of sounds, part Lurie's band The Lounge Lizards (discography), part overly dramatic .. something.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:54 PM PST - 32 comments

Where do you wanna meet, Fahey's Bar or the Dragon Lounge? How an ordinary San Francisco bar adapted to shifting demographics by developing a dual personality.
posted by w0mbat at 3:58 PM PST - 21 comments

This is the only level in the game and you will die a lot.
posted by item at 3:21 PM PST - 86 comments

Billy Lee Riley, legendary rockabilly performer and Sun Studios recording artist died on August 2, 2009. His two biggest hits were Flying Saucers Rock and Roll and Red Hot. Billy never achieved the fame of his Sun Records contemporaries Jerry Lee Lewis, Carl Perkins, and Elvis Presley. He later went to Los Angeles and worked as a session musician, recording with artists such as the Beach Boys and Dean Martin. His career enjoyed a resurgence beginning in the mid-1990s. He released the Grammy nominated album Hot Damn! in 1997. [more inside]
posted by marxchivist at 12:55 PM PST - 10 comments

Today is 40th anniversary of a famous photograph. It proved Paul is dead. Today there was a party on Abbey Road. And don't forget to listen to the album.
posted by Xurando at 12:20 PM PST - 33 comments

Electronic Music pop band Voice Farm was formed in the early 80s when Charly Brown and Myke Reilly started performing in the San Francisco area together. Their earliest single perked up a few ears, and by 1982 they had recorded a full album of material. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 11:19 AM PST - 15 comments

All at once, they practically screamed, “We’ve got ten minutes with the President on Monday…do you wanna do the shoot?!!”. Don’t let anyone tell ya photographing the President ain’t all it’s cracked up to be! [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:15 AM PST - 43 comments

Lock 'n' Roll, a strategic matching game for a lazy Saturday.
posted by The Devil Tesla at 8:29 AM PST - 28 comments

Dismantling the Empire.
According to the 2008 official Pentagon inventory of US military bases around the world, the Empire consists of 865 facilities deploying over 190,000 troops in 46 countries and overseas U.S. territories. The United States spends approximately $250 billion each year maintaining its global military presence. The sole purpose of this is to give us hegemony -- that is, control or dominance -- over as many nations on the planet as possible.
(Related I & II).
posted by adamvasco at 4:35 AM PST - 162 comments

John Kricfalusi pitches a cartoon featuring the talented anger of George Liquor [ Part 1 | 2 ]
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:20 AM PST - 25 comments

Suit cases packed, check. Did I turn off the stove, check. Electricity bills paid, check. Now all I have to do is catch my Plane at the Airport, and I’m off. One full month of rest and relaxation. What could be better, right. Wrong. Here are some of the best countries to get sick in.
posted by hadjiboy at 2:53 AM PST - 30 comments

Dennis Wolfberg was one of the most distinctive voices (literally) from the stand-up comedy boom of the early 90s. A former schoolteacher, he became a fixture on the fledgling network Comedy Central roughly fifteen years BCM (Before Carlos Mencia). His vocal style and inflections had a way of selling the most outlandish comparisons. He was a guest on both Letterman and Carson, and had guest-starred as Gooshie on Quantum Leap on multiple occasions until he tragically died from cancer in 1994. Some of his most memorable routines were his experience with Fiber One cereal and encounter with a sigmoidoscope,, his wife's pregnancy and his twins' Bris. His HBO special is available in its entirety on YouTube: part 1 - part 2 - part 3 (most of part 3 linked above).
posted by JHarris at 2:11 AM PST - 26 comments

Elements is a Magic-the-Gathering-like CCG flash game. So is Mytheria.
posted by juv3nal at 12:40 AM PST - 30 comments

August 7

Chrono-synclastic infundibulum - SLYT featuring Bob & Ray, somehow based on a concept from Kurt Vonnegut's Sirens of Titan which refers to a region of the universe in which all conflicting opinions are simultaneously correct.
posted by longsleeves at 9:09 PM PST - 17 comments


The Palace of the End: Taylor Mac imagines a brief, bittersweet encounter between romance novelists Lynne Cheney and Saddam Hussein. (SLYT)
posted by hermitosis at 8:30 PM PST - 5 comments

The 'problem'? A perceived spate of recent knife crime in Japan: The 'solution'? Revise the 'Firearm and Sword Control Law' to ban possession of daggers and other double-edged knives with blades 5.5 cm or longer.

The 'result'? Pocket knife lands tourist, 74, in lockup, with nine days in a holding cell. Two other American tourists were arrested that same day at the same koban (police box) ...
posted by woodblock100 at 8:15 PM PST - 82 comments

"Lunch is really nice again, not mentioning a few battles with foods that were calling me like sirens called Odysseus. I had some salad some pasta and some fish and we had a nice chat with some Russian girls at an “All-Russian” table. Catching up on all the gossip, laughing, and in general making fun of people! By the way I forgot to mention that this is a men’s and women’s tournament so if you lose early and you are lacking confidence there is a good chance to challenge one of the girls to a match." Russian-American tennis player Dmitry Tursunov blogged his experiences at a 2006 tourney in Estoril, Portugal with hilarious results. [For best results, read from the bottom of the page up!] [more inside]
posted by ORthey at 8:08 PM PST - 6 comments

The Guardian ran a series of articles looking at the state of high-speed rail travel today. France intends to double its length of track over the next decade, and China is planning a massive rail-building programme, including a high-speed line which will halve the travel time between Beijing and Shanghai to 4 hours. In Germany, domestic air travel is rapidly going extinct, and Spain's network has made day trips between Madrid and Barcelona a possibility. The USA, which has long neglected its rail network, is planning up to 10 high-speed lines. Meanwhile, Britain's only high-speed line goes to France, but there is talk of a 250mph line from London to Birmingham and beyond, possibly by the early 2020s. Meanwhile, the CEO of France's rail operator, SNCF, weighs in on what the UK should do.
posted by acb at 7:12 PM PST - 49 comments

Sister Sue, tell me baby what are we gonna do. She said take two candles, and then you burn them out. Make a paper boat, light it and send it out, send it out now ... Willy DeVille (formerly William Dorsay), died of pancreatic cancer on August 6, at the age of 58. So much of his music evoked the languid heat of a city night. This might be a good evening to turn it up loud. [more inside]
posted by maudlin at 6:57 PM PST - 21 comments

Knightfall. No, not batman. Puzzlequestish game with story mode, leveling, achievements, and unique twists in the gameplay.
posted by Betty_effn_White at 6:20 PM PST - 9 comments

Just Another Post-Apocalypse Story is a short, sweet, profound webcomic by Edward Grug III, of "Love Puppets" fame, from the always-excellent Top Shelf 2.0 repository.
posted by jbickers at 12:39 PM PST - 38 comments

Do you know what you would see a hypothecary about? Have stared down into a joola? Ever come across a jigget of sheep? Has someone called you a slubberdegullion to your face? Learn these and many more words from blogger Robin Bloor's fun 10 Words You Don't Know series of posts. Perhaps the most entertaining is the one where Bloor provides explanatory limericks with his definitions.
posted by Kattullus at 11:45 AM PST - 27 comments

Detroit is one of the most visually interesting cities in the world, however it is also one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented. Detroit Book of Love is a group of photographs illustrating what contemporary Detroit artists have been doing in regards to developing an understanding and appreciation for this complex and diverse city; from street portraits of the survivors, to the landscapes of wild new growth, to the industrial leftovers. As a group they show Detroit as it is, not what it should be or what it once was. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 10:59 AM PST - 27 comments

According to the Wall Street Journal, coffee shops in New York are starting to cut back on laptops -- by reducing WiFi privileges, removing outlets, or banning the machines outright. This article has spawned a vast number of spin-off pieces and conversations across the Web. [more inside]
posted by Shepherd at 10:36 AM PST - 100 comments

Aesop's tale of the clever crow just might be a case of astute observation. (Somehow, the story lacks the same panache when a great ape is the hero.)
posted by IndigoJones at 10:30 AM PST - 14 comments

"And much like Christmas, originally about the birth of a religious savior-figure named Jesus, is now about buying things for people and hoping that they buy more things for you, much how Easter, originally about the death of a religious savior-figure named Jesus, is now about receiving rabbit- or egg-shaped chocolates, now and forever Obon is about collecting all of the Pokemon." Japan, trains, marketing, pachinko, hordes of stamp-seeking children.
posted by silby at 10:08 AM PST - 34 comments

Persuasion: Why men in ads are dumb, goofy or completely inept. Several YT commercials and a thoughtful essay.
posted by five fresh fish at 9:47 AM PST - 147 comments

SubPubHubbub The real-time web, manifested by services like Twitter and Friendfeed are all the rage these days. What happens if everything online could be real-time? It can, thanks to Google PubSubHub and their ongoing effort to add it to their products. [more inside]
posted by griffey at 9:46 AM PST - 16 comments

Faulkner Friday: Listen to William Faulkner read from As I lay Dying, while enjoying a photo montage of his life. Part Two. Still not satisfied? Then listen to Faulkner read from Old Man. Part II. Bonus: Audio of most of his Nobel Prize acceptance speech.
posted by Atreides at 9:27 AM PST - 20 comments


Set the charges, and stand well back. No cell phones, please. This is very dangerous work, but it's been a long week for you, hasn't it? You deserve to spend your day working in Demolition City.
posted by Eideteker at 9:17 AM PST - 39 comments

Almost three years ago, AOL started on a path towards being a "low-cost producer of high-quality content at scale" when they purchase Weblogs, Inc. in late 2006. At the beginning of 2009, AOL count[ed] more than 75 sites in its publishing portfolio and plans to add 30 more in the coming year, all gathered under Media Glow. AOL currently has approximately 1,500 content-writing staff, around 1,000 of those people are working full time for AOL, the rest are freelancing. That's twice the number from a year ago, and AOL has set the goal of doubling or tripling the total by next year. The TechCrunch article states that these writers include former journalists at BusinessWeek, New York Times, USA Today, ESPN, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, Consumer Reports, Condé Nast and scores of regional and national newspapers and magazines. In an interview, Marty Moe, SVP of AOL Media, said: "Principally, we have none of the legacy costs associated with producing print publications, for example. We don't own printing presses, or fleets of delivery trucks. We don't have the elaborate editorial structures geared to producing products over a printing press." (via)
posted by filthy light thief at 8:52 AM PST - 24 comments

Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software. It's intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments. (Previously) [more inside]
posted by DU at 8:23 AM PST - 37 comments

Sneak some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor's Porch Night! On August 8th, participate in clandestine summer squash gifting. [more inside]
posted by sarahnade at 7:49 AM PST - 41 comments

PrettyDesktopFilter: Rainmeter has joined forces with Enigma for the release of Rainmeter 1.0, which finally makes code-diving for the creation of [HUD-styled] desktops a thing of the past. (via: 1 2) [more inside]
posted by tybeet at 7:23 AM PST - 19 comments

The World's Best Alternative Subway Maps, including Eddie Jabbour's NYC Kick Map.
posted by nickyskye at 6:21 AM PST - 48 comments



August 6

Sid Caesar demonstrates the art of doubletalk.
posted by not_on_display at 11:45 PM PST - 32 comments

Good Morning, New pancakes. And that should about do it. $3500 will get you your very own pancake machine. 200 pancakes/hour in fact.
posted by rschroed at 11:22 PM PST - 59 comments


Thinking about becoming a parent? You might find the US Consumer Product Safety Commission's list of recalled items fun! It looks like there's just under a zillion things out there that might harm your new tot. And that doesn't include ... y'know ... toys.
posted by GatorDavid at 8:50 PM PST - 23 comments

Pattern in Islamic Art - thousands of high quality, free pictures of various motifs, patterns and architectural elements of mosques and other structures from Asia to West Africa. [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan at 8:15 PM PST - 31 comments


Clark Foam closed its doors almost four years ago due to Grubby Clark's worry that regulations covering polyurethane foam molding would only get worse, but US surfboard making has survived. In fact, it provided some an opportunity to reconsider board making in a historical context. [more inside]
posted by morganw at 7:44 PM PST - 7 comments

Building and flying free flight model airplanes is a pastime so obscure it doesn't even register on the geek heirarchy. But in the period between Lindberg's flight across the Atlantic until the start of the Second World War, thousands of boys (and some girls) around the world succumbed to the allure of rubber, lube, and dope. [more inside]
posted by gamera at 7:37 PM PST - 13 comments


FreeBaseballRadio.com is a site that was created to help find internet broadcasts of live baseball games. Specifically those that are available for free.
posted by acro at 6:37 PM PST - 18 comments

Confused about the world of Templar, Az? (Previously), and its three-books of world-building? Well, i09 gives you a run through of the major plots, cults, and sub-cultures that inhabit the comic's alternate history Arizona. Or maybe you should just start at the beginning.
posted by The Whelk at 5:37 PM PST - 12 comments

For thirty-six years, Warren Hern has been one of the few doctors in America to specialize in late abortions. George Tiller was another. And when Dr. Tiller was murdered that Sunday in church, Warren Hern became the only one left.
posted by SkylitDrawl at 5:06 PM PST - 146 comments


How the myth of Silicon Valley is really like a “gold rush.” Riches for some, “slavery” for many, says Toronto technology commentator Jesse Hirsh, who also takes aim at the ethic of waste built into Web ideology as expressed in Chris Anderson’s Free. (Video of presentation.) [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 4:27 PM PST - 30 comments

Miss Information. The desperate life of a tormented library clerk.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:10 PM PST - 24 comments

An uncredited contributor to A Star is Born; a writer for Little Orphan Annie; the writer of Nuremberg and a writer of December 7th – both productions of the Office of Strategic Services documentary unit led by John Ford; author of a 1940s hit, What Makes Sammy Run? – the story of Sammy Glick (Shmelka Glickstein)'s rise from newspaper office boy to studio production chief – oddly enough also made into a musical. And, of course, the man who put the words "I coulda been a contender" into Marlon Brando's lips. Screenwriter Budd Schulberg dies today, five years short of a century.
posted by WCityMike at 3:46 PM PST - 13 comments

We've seen tattooed librarians, but so-called literary tattoos are a growing trend. See the lively LiveJournal group, or the folks over at Contrariwise. Recently, "A couple of independent editors have decided to take the trend and invert it -- to put the literary tattoos back in a book." It appears the call for submissions is still on-going.
posted by litterateur at 3:05 PM PST - 26 comments


From Hieroglyphs to Isotypes
posted by yegga at 2:27 PM PST - 9 comments

Pepsi Coke Blue x 100 "Dubbed Coca-Cola Freestyle, the new soda dispenser offers more than 100 different beverages, all in one self-contained unit." See it in action. [via]
posted by kmz at 1:46 PM PST - 88 comments

Can a firefox extension extend rationality? Wherein intel labs attempt to add rationality to the web. Good freaking luck. [more inside]
posted by lumpenprole at 1:15 PM PST - 34 comments

"My Quest for Corvo was started by accident one summer afternoon in 1925..." so begins A.J.A Symons book The Quest for Corvo, an experimental biography of the bizarre genius Baron Corvo, much admired by D.H. Lawrence and by Graham Greene among others.
Mention Baron Corvo and bookdealers get excited. Only 5 copies (proofs) of his Don Renato existed. Symons sold his copy to Cecil Woolf, another biographer of Baron Corvo. This copy was later bought by an American Donald Weeks who, after reading Symons book, left his job and moved to England to become part of the growing cult of Baron Corvo. He was said to have amassed an enormous collection of Corviana. Weeks died in 2003: "He died ... of natural causes... Because, however, he left no will nor details of next of kin, he was officially classed as a missing person. He was "no one".' The fate of his rare-book collection has been a source of speculation.
Last week, Leeds University announced that "The University of Leeds has acquired a collection of books and manuscripts relating to Baron Corvo, one of the most controversial English novelists of the early 20th Century." Previews of the catalog. As to what makes Corvo so fascinating, readers can discover for themselves.
posted by vacapinta at 12:52 PM PST - 13 comments

TV star. Amusement park attraction. Mine sweeper. Stew meat. Funded by SGI & Netscape founder James Clark, award-winning documentary The Cove goes undercover for an inside look at the brutal slaughter of dolphins in the Japanese town of Taiji. Previously.
posted by kanuck at 12:49 PM PST - 20 comments

Steepster is a web 2.0 review/list-making/browsing tool for tea enthusiasts. Lets you easily keep a searchable, tag-able tasting log of teas you've tried, then browse for more you might like.
posted by jbickers at 12:34 PM PST - 8 comments


The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam invites you to compare Caravaggio and Rembrandt. For an overview of Rembrandt's work here are Rembrandt van Rijn: Life and Work and A Web Catalogue of Rembrandt Paintings. For Caravaggio there's caravaggio.com which makes use of the Italian website Tutta l'opera del Caravaggio.
posted by Kattullus at 11:34 AM PST - 13 comments

...The narrative of the blues got hijacked by rock ’n’ roll, which rode a wave of youth consumers to global domination. Back behind the split, there was something else: a deeper, riper source. Many people who have written about this body of music have noticed it. Robert Palmer called it Deep Blues. We’re talking about strains within strains, sure, but listen to something like Ishman Bracey’s ''Woman Woman Blues,'' his tattered yet somehow impeccable falsetto when he sings, ''She got coal-black curly hair.'' Songs like that were not made for dancing. Not even for singing along. They were made for listening. For grown-ups. They were chamber compositions. Listen to Blind Willie Johnson’s "Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground.'' It has no words. It’s hummed by a blind preacher incapable of playing an impure note on the guitar. We have to go against our training here and suspend anthropological thinking; it doesn’t serve at these strata. The noble ambition not to be the kind of people who unwittingly fetishize and exoticize black or poor-white folk poverty has allowed us to remain the kind of people who don’t stop to wonder whether the serious treatment of certain folk forms as essentially high- or higher-art forms might have originated with the folk themselves.
From Unknown Bards: The blues becomes apparent to itself by one John Jeremiah Sullivan. I came across it while browsing Heavy Rotation: Twenty Writers On The Albums That Changed Their Lives. For Sullivan, that album was American Primitive, Vol. II: Pre-War Revenants (1897 - 1939), which is my favorite CD of the year. Which came out in 2005 while I just got around to buying it this year. Foolish me. It is a piece of art in itself in every respect--all CDs should have such production values. [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 11:08 AM PST - 50 comments


In August 1910, an Irish sign-painter and decorator named Robert Noonan left the town of Hastings on the south coast of England, and made his way north and west towards Liverpool, with the hope of emigrating to Canada. Already sick with tuberculosis, his condition worsened once he reached the city, and he was to die there in a workhouse hospital ward, in February 1911. He had, however, left in the care of his daughter Kathleen a package that was to change the political landscape of twentieth-century Britain. [more inside]
posted by hydatius at 10:18 AM PST - 12 comments


Japanese Element Symbols is an introduction for non-Japanese to the Japanese language through Kanji symbols, its alphabet, elements of Japan's culture, and what to expect on the culinary front.
posted by netbros at 9:54 AM PST - 12 comments

But have they become tools of the Left? Seventy-five years on, the murderous pair is still provoking comment. This time, from neocons.
posted by Guy_Inamonkeysuit at 9:34 AM PST - 38 comments

To encourage circulation of $1 coins, the U.S. Mint offers $250 boxes of dollar coins at face value with free U.S. shipping (and credit card cashback). [via]
posted by parudox at 9:01 AM PST - 297 comments

The Environmental and Economic Pluses of the 4-Day Workweek: "Forget everybody working for the weekend. In Utah all government employees have shifted to a four-day workweek, and the state is calling it a win-win-win for its budget, workers and clean air. Utah has saved $1.8 million in electrical bills in the last year, the air has been spared an estimated 6,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, and workers are thrilled. Eighty-two percent of them say they prefer the new arrangement, which still enforces the 40-hour week by requiring 10 or more hours a day Monday - [Thursday]. Is it time to ask your boss if you can take off Friday .... forever?" (via)
posted by kliuless at 8:55 AM PST - 34 comments

On Tuesday, Gawker media was taken offline by a German ddos attack. Today, three of the 'net's largest social media sites: Twitter, Facebook and Livejournal, are experiencing similar outages. Twitter now reports they are under a denial-of-service attack.
posted by zarq at 8:14 AM PST - 107 comments

Pecsi, or Pepsi it doesn't matter, as long as you drink our sugar water. Want to sound like a native? Which one? This article can help you achieve that. That's the quick version, if you want something more academic, try this.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 8:05 AM PST - 19 comments

Brazil's new water conservation campaign: Xixi no Banho! (slyt)
posted by Sys Rq at 7:35 AM PST - 86 comments


A couple of professors, in collaboration with two upcoming IEEE conferences, have organized a Mario A.I. Competition (via), inviting programmers to create controllers for a modified version of Infinite Mario Brothers (previously). One contender has stepped up and posted a demo of his controller in action. [more inside]
posted by tybeet at 6:20 AM PST - 42 comments

August 5


If French Fry Coated Hot Dogs* were too sane for you... Russian Haired Sausage!
posted by Anything at 7:12 PM PST - 58 comments

The Chickening [via mefi projects] The Chickening is a video game about a chicken who shoots lasers. Out of his eyes.
posted by Burhanistan at 4:52 PM PST - 46 comments

Jorge Luis Borges: The Mirror Man "This program examines the life and literary career of the charismatic Argentine writer, as well as the thematic, symbolic, and mythological underpinnings of his works. Archival interviews with Borges; his mother, Leonor Acevedo de Borges; his second wife, Maria Kodama; and collaborator Adolfo Bioy Casares provide insights into the private Borges, while readings from The Mirrors, Dreamtigers, The Plot, The South, The Aleph, and other landmarks of Latin American fiction demonstrate his virtuosity as a transformer of experiences." (ubuweb)
posted by vronsky at 3:51 PM PST - 27 comments

Real USSR is a blog containing commentaries on everyday life in the former Soviet Union. The liberal use of family and other amateur photos provides unusual insight into the daily experience of Soviet life. Topics range from 1940s homemade double-exposure photography to queueing to USSR - the birthplace of feminism. via
posted by Rumple at 2:50 PM PST - 23 comments

Charlie Chaplin [previously, except the primary link from blogspot is down] has a grandson, James Thiérrée. Growing up in his parents circus Le Cirque Imaginaire (later, Invisible), the acrobat evolved into performer/director/choreographer of soon to be four full-length works. (Full disclosure: the first three are all from La Veillée des Abysses--Bright Abyss--and the latter is a preview for his upcoming solo act Raoul.) He's also made forays in movies you've probably seen. More? Check out this Au revoir Parapluie (Farewell Umbrella) medley, and how about some trapeze? [more inside]
posted by JaiMahodara at 2:22 PM PST - 6 comments

Neil Armstrong was a test pilot before he was an astronaut. He had his pilot's license before he had his driver's license. But even he had some trouble getting used to that darned Lunar Excursion Module (LEM). [more inside]
posted by cmchap at 2:22 PM PST - 40 comments

Human Motions Sculptures. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 2:19 PM PST - 20 comments

Kenyan Birth Certificate Generator (Birther approved!)
posted by ColdChef at 2:14 PM PST - 56 comments

Three part BBC documentary analyzes and documents the revolution and the long struggle of Iran and the West to come together ever since the revolution. The documentary shows interviews with a wide range of world leaders who reveal the inner dealings of all governing adminstrations from the past thirty years, both from within Iran’s own adminstration and from the Western counterparts.
posted by semmi at 2:03 PM PST - 8 comments


Vampires are over, argues Neil Gaiman. (Via the Guardian, who rather oddly suggest the similarly over-exposed zombies as a replacement)
posted by Artw at 1:23 PM PST - 275 comments


The guys at Penny Arcade often refer to their sequential comics as "dreaded continuity," but some of their storylines have created their own microcosms apart from the usual commentary on things in the broad world video games. Prime examples of these storylines include Cardboard Tube Samurai and Song of the Sorcelator, the latter has spun into a world made by its fans. The newest sequential work started from one of three short "treatments," set in a nineteen-twenties crime fiction which unfolds in a time where "machine intellect" has been outlawed. The first page of Automata was set to music that was composed and performed by Christoph Hermiteer. The second fan creation is a short radio program, based on a script written by the Penny Arcade folks.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:01 PM PST - 73 comments

"It's a different way of thinking about 'local' that's not quite as literal," says a consumer research consultant in an article running this week in alternative newspapers nationwide. The piece (by Stacy Mitchell of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance) describes the response of global and national companies to the reality that consumers are moving more of their dollars into purchasing at locally owned businesses, representing both a threat, and an opportunity for companies that can successfully rebrand themselves as 'local'. As with greenwashing before it, 'localwashing' seeks to lure customers based on perception of values alone, resulting in such phenomena as Frito-Lay highlighting farmers from 27 states as the "local" growers for its potato chips and Hellman's Mayonnaise piloting a campaign in Canada to present its product as 'local' because most of the ingredients are from North America.
posted by Miko at 12:49 PM PST - 58 comments

Where I Write 'Fantasy & Science Fiction authors in their creative spaces' Photography by Kyle Cassidy
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:37 PM PST - 42 comments

Looking for work? Avoid this job.
posted by ocherdraco at 12:11 PM PST - 52 comments

Got a link got a link got a link here link link link do I hear a click do I hear a click got a link got a link got a link here you want to learn want to learn want to learn learn learn from John Korrey John Korrey one of the greatest one of the greatest it's an art it's an art it's not just talking fast not just talking fast thank you sir show him the door! [more inside]
posted by mattdidthat at 11:45 AM PST - 21 comments

We've covered Harry Patch before but as you might know he died recently. Now Radiohead have released a track in tribute to him and the fallen others.
posted by A189Nut at 11:21 AM PST - 11 comments

Kemp Folds - Ross Kemp's face, folded. (Who?)
posted by nthdegx at 8:36 AM PST - 33 comments

Then, in November 2007, exactly three years after the disappearance of Simjanoska, another woman from Kičevo went missing. Fifty-six-year-old Lubica Ličoska was, like Simjanoska, a custodian, and she also lived in the same section of town. When the similarities were noted, locals suddenly remembered Gorica Pavelska. She was seventy-three, a retired custodian who went missing in May 2003. No one had thought much of it at the time. She might have suffered a stroke in some remote place, they had speculated, or gone to work in Skopje. No trace of her was ever found and the whole business had been forgotten. But now it appeared that little Kičevo was home to a serial killer, and Vlado Taneski’s editors smelled a big story.
- The Mask of Sanity: On the Trail of a Serial Killer in Macedonia by Dimiter Kenarov. An account of the Kičevo Monster and the killer's surprising identity. [Warning: Descriptions of the murders include graphic details]
posted by Kattullus at 8:29 AM PST - 20 comments

Major Lazer "Pon de Floor" (SLVimeo, NSFW) [more inside]
posted by fungible at 7:52 AM PST - 62 comments

A murderer attempts to explain, justify, and understand his crime (before the fact).
posted by prefpara at 7:13 AM PST - 527 comments

A group of 25 homeless Polish men are building a boat with the intention of sailing around the world. Meanwhile, over in the New World, around 80 Providence, R.I. homeless people have formed their own government.
posted by oinopaponton at 6:41 AM PST - 40 comments

High Frequency Trading The Algorithmic Trading animals have been let loose. (via) [more inside]
posted by manny_calavera at 4:06 AM PST - 39 comments

August 4

A simple question shows how complex the issue is. Chris at "Cynical C" asks his fellow citizens where they get thier health care (insurance) from and the incredible diversity of the current options and situations is immediately apparent. Quite spontaneously (but surely not unexpectedly), the question of "How much does it cost you?" becomes an essential part of the answers. Outsiders opine and tell stories and commiserate. [more inside]
posted by sid abotu at 10:25 PM PST - 117 comments

In April of 1932, an unlikely literary débutante published her first book. This is how The New Yorker's Judith Thurman begins the tale of one Laura Ingalls Wilder, the author of the enduring Little House series. Those who have read the series may enjoy this glimpse into the story behind these stories, shedding some light on the lives of Laura and her daughter beyond the place where Wilder's books ended.
posted by sarabeth at 10:20 PM PST - 33 comments

Forvo: All the words in the world, pronounced by native speakers. At the time of this post, the tally stands at: 327,492 words; 239,165 pronunciations; in 220 languages; with 25,040 users submitting.
posted by not_on_display at 10:03 PM PST - 26 comments

Which of these fribbles looks more intelligent? Please click the link and decide before you read [more inside]
posted by orthogonality at 8:09 PM PST - 111 comments

In the wake of allegations from ex-employees at Blackwater/Xe, founder Erik Prince is now under investigation for murdering federal informants. [more inside]
posted by zoomorphic at 6:38 PM PST - 125 comments

With the initial belief that there is no story, or at least no fluid story behind the events of the events of the classic Kurosawa film Rashomon, MeFi's Own Shepherd set about diagramming the movie in an attempt to figure it all out. Join him as he, in his own words, Ruins Rashomon For Everyone, Forever. [via mefi projects]
posted by Effigy2000 at 6:24 PM PST - 36 comments

Love Me is a heartbreaking photo essay that follows the life of a 17 year old girl living in extreme poverty in Southeastern Ohio. [more inside]
posted by lunasol at 5:54 PM PST - 169 comments

ReadWritePoem was a multiuser poetry blog until July 31, when it turned into a social network for poetry with forums, groups, subblogs and more.
posted by dylan20 at 5:49 PM PST - 2 comments

Charles Nelson Reilly by "Weird Al" Yankovic and JibJab
posted by Del Far at 5:37 PM PST - 59 comments

Tony & Tupac [more inside]
posted by Rubbstone at 4:43 PM PST - 3 comments


BaO "Eat You Up" A fun and cute parody [more inside]
posted by one teak forest at 2:55 PM PST - 16 comments

The Smoking Gun turns the table on a group of pranksters allegedly responsible for terrorizing strangers over the phone: Outing An Online Outlaw describes how the group leader used skype, an unprotected wifi connection and his mothers bedroom to engage in what TSG calls "an orgy of criminal activity."
posted by krautland at 2:36 PM PST - 65 comments

Do you qualify to be a UK Citizen? From the looks of Twitter it seems that many UK Citizens don’t.
posted by Artw at 1:17 PM PST - 92 comments

Bill Clinton makes secret trip to North Korea, wins pardon and apparent release of two captive US journalists. Jailed reporters Laura Ling and Euna Lee, employees of Al Gore's Current TV, were arrested for spying in March and had recently been sentenced to 12 years in a labor camp. The remarkable development is likely to boost to Clinton's battered image. [more inside]
posted by CunningLinguist at 1:08 PM PST - 175 comments

Ignite is an opportunity to pack into a theater and watch people geek out in 5-minute prepared talks (15 seconds per slide, auto-advance) on all kinds of topics. Maybe there's one coming up near you. [more inside]
posted by gurple at 12:36 PM PST - 15 comments

The music video for Modest Mouse's new track King Rat was released today. Interestingly, it was directed by Heath Ledger two years ago, and released posthumously. Apparently, there's another one coming up. It has described as looking "like exactly the kind of thing that someone might come up with after spending a couple of months rocking Joker makeup and pretending to mutilate people." The video contains a little cartoon goriness, so be warned.
posted by azarbayejani at 12:23 PM PST - 20 comments

Discovered in 1997 by oceanographer Charles Moore, the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is 3.5 million tons of trash, 80% of which is plastic. Moore is the founder of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, which is conducting ongoing research into the patch. Blog from their current expedition on the research vessel Alguita. The Scripp's Institution of Oceanography is also studying the patch. Blog from their SEAPLEX expedition. greatgarbagepatch.org tracks community efforts to stop trashing the ocean. Previously: [1, 2].
posted by kanuck at 12:18 PM PST - 17 comments

RIP Benson The Carp, 'the people's fish'... yes, it's the Silly Season again.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:06 PM PST - 12 comments

For a time the Internet's own poster-child for irrational exuberance and underwater mortgages, Casey Serin (previously discussed on Metafilter), the blogger behind iaminforeclosure.com and millionairebychristmas.com, is interviewed by WalletPop about his future plans... which include living in a van and panning for gold. The real-estate market in the US continues to present post-apocalyptic stories.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 11:27 AM PST - 29 comments

Jobless College Graduate Sues Because She's Still Jobless A recent college graduate is suing her alma mater for $72,000 -- the full cost of her tuition and then some -- because she cannot find a job.
posted by Pragmatica at 11:25 AM PST - 145 comments

Childrens' cable television mainstay and media brand Nickelodeon is rebranding as "The Nick" with a new splat-less logo. [more inside]
posted by Servo5678 at 11:23 AM PST - 55 comments

Just nae call i' English! Food historian Catherine Brown has announced that Haggis, the traditional Scottish dish, was invented in England rather than Scotland. Scottish butchers have dismissed the daft claim. But just in case she turns out to be right, there's always... curry? [more inside]
posted by zarq at 10:07 AM PST - 54 comments

What would you do if your husband of many years, with whom you had created a family and with whom you led what you considered to be a successful life, suddenly said he thought he no longer loved you? One woman's approach: refuse to believe it. Not everyone agrees.
posted by shivohum at 9:41 AM PST - 168 comments

NSFW: Genesis, a high concept line of sex toys, one for each of the days of Creation. (via, previously)
posted by yiftach at 9:38 AM PST - 34 comments

"Theatre," says Professor Lorraine Moller, Artistic Director of Rehabilitation Through the Arts at Sing Sing Correctional Facility, in her foreword to Laurence Tocci's The Proscenium Cage [pdf], "may well be one of the few antidotes to the de-humanizing climate of prisons." The use of theater in prisons has many forms: from projects designed to let prisoners tell their own stories as shown in the Austrian film "Gangster Girls" (trailer in German), to the elaborate, high-concept costume dramas of Italy's Compagnia della Fortezza. Some base their work on Boal's Theatre of the Oppressed, others on Moreno's Psychodrama, but many programs use a more direct approach: put on classic plays, and let the play do the illuminating. That's the approach of Shakespeare Behind Bars, the troupe at Luther Luckett Correctional Complex in LaGrange, Kentucky. Watch the entirety of Shakespeare Behind Bars, a compelling 2005 documentary that follows the troupe for a season as they produce a production of The Tempest. [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco at 9:32 AM PST - 8 comments


Bargain Barn, Bargain Barn.
posted by pianomover at 9:04 AM PST - 25 comments

The Daily Express reports on a UK Government Announcement to expand the use of Family Intervention Projects. However, the Daily Express exaggerates the report somewhat, the article stating (apparently wildly incorrectly) that the UK Government "plans to put 20,000 problem families under 24-hour CCTV supervision in their own homes". Other reports in the UK press make no mention of CCTV. Nonetheless, the alarmist Express article is widely picked up and discussed on the internet, pushing many people past 10 on the Orwellometer. Then Mefite FfejL uses Twitter to ask Ed Balls, the minister responsible, if the CCTV aspect of the Express article is accurate. [more inside]
posted by memebake at 8:55 AM PST - 34 comments

Spacehack "A directory of ways to participate in space exploration. Interact and connect with the space community."
posted by chrismear at 8:52 AM PST - 6 comments

How are Americans spending their time? An informational graphic from The New York Times.
posted by splatta at 7:18 AM PST - 74 comments

David "Wondermark" Malki was curious about how important the dates on the stamps printed by an APC (Automated Postal Center) are. Here are his findings.
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 4:08 AM PST - 55 comments

August 3




The wonderful Ben Schott (previously on Mefi) has posted an awesome excerpt from the 1891 Anglo-American Telegraphic Code, showing how folks got around (economically-induced) character and word limitations over a century before Twitter. Too wacky to be true? Gleam tus!
posted by ericbop at 8:10 PM PST - 36 comments

The White House receives over 60,000 letters to the President every day. A new video from the White House briefly shows the process of selecting the ten of them that the President reads, three or four of which he writes responses to, every day.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 4:13 PM PST - 74 comments

Thomas Pynchon’s latest novel Inherent Vice, is causing quite a stir, and not just because all his novels cause a stir. It seems the author of epic novels of giant adenoids and invisible clockwork ducks has written a-gasp-detective novel, which weighs in at an astoundingly reasonable 384 pages. Some have noted confusion among Pynchon aficionados at the author’s choice to work in such a genre. One writer has used the opportunity to examine why supposed “literary” writers have turned to the crime genre with varying degrees of success, and at least one critic seems genuinely put out by Pynchon’s creative choice.
posted by dortmunder at 3:05 PM PST - 97 comments


Terry Pratchett: I'll die before the endgame
posted by Artw at 11:44 AM PST - 74 comments

Meet the Federer and Nadal of NYC handball.
posted by AceRock at 11:34 AM PST - 12 comments

Dude, wouldn't it be totally cool if there was an opposite microwave to cool tasty canned beverages in seconds? What if underwear had pockets? They'd be called Underawesomes! And don't you think ketchup packets should be bigger? Oh man, speaking of munchies, what if you had see-through fudge? You could see right through it! Dang, it would be rad if there was smokable tape you could use to repair your busted spliff, huh? But I mean, dude, there should like really be a website where stoners could post and discuss the ideas they get when they're super high. I'd call it highDEAS.
posted by carsonb at 11:26 AM PST - 99 comments


William Saletan has been writing about abortion for a while. In Slate he recently discussed the Preventing Unintended Pregnancies, Reducing the Need for Abortion, and Supporting Parents Act, and some hard line pro-life groups resistance to this bill. Doug Johnson, the National Right to Life Commitee's legislative director responds stating that the bill is a "prop in a political charade" to "provide camouflage for pro-abortion politicians". Saletan tears holes in Johnson's stated objections, calling out the NRLF's unstated objection to contraception.
posted by garlic at 10:57 AM PST - 260 comments


RadioShack to rebrand itself later this year. [more inside]
posted by swift at 10:32 AM PST - 138 comments

Doubt [print version] is an article by Andrew Rice about Leopold Munyakazi, a professor of French at Goucher College, who has been accused by the Rwandan government of being a genocidaire. His defenders, including the late Alison Des Forges, claim that the Hutu Munyakazi, who's married to a Tutsi, is being targeted by Paul Kagame's administration because he's a dissenter who's challenged the official account of the genocide. Into this complicated affair steps documentarian Charlie Ebersol who wants to profile Munyakazi for his NBC primetime news show Wanted, which has been received with considerable opprobrium and which may already have been canceled.
posted by Kattullus at 9:57 AM PST - 9 comments

Ice creams (the site takes a little long to load, but is well worth the wait, especially for its discription of "kulfi"... yummm) from around the world—some more bizarre than others.
posted by hadjiboy at 8:37 AM PST - 40 comments

The CIA in Tibet l the Cold War in ShangriLa l The CIA's Secret War In Tibet by Kenneth Conboy and James Morrison, the entire book online. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 7:06 AM PST - 8 comments

Multiplex is a webcomic about life at a movie theater.
posted by lunit at 6:33 AM PST - 83 comments

The Goat Who Took on the Fed: WSJ's Andy Jordan spends time in the Berkshires to see how locals make the case for "slow money" with their own local currency, "The Berkshare". (previously 1 2 3 4) [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 5:56 AM PST - 14 comments

It was the media party of the decade. It was planned by the king of parties, Robert Isabell, who died last month. Although thrown to celebrate the birth of Talk Magazine, little did the attendees know, that this was the night print media began to die. “I was aware it was a historic night,” Ms. Brown said. “We were on a boat and I was with Natasha Richardson. We were talking and laughing, looking at the lights of the twin towers. And then a big wave came over the side of the boat and soaked us both. Now Natasha is gone, the towers are gone. It’s very, very sad, but I am very excited by this new world we are heading into.”
posted by Xurando at 5:53 AM PST - 22 comments

Saturday, Aug 1, a gunman walked into a gay youth club in Tel Aviv at app. 22:40 pm and started firing a gun indiscriminately at the teenagers who were there. Twelve were injured, four of them in critical condition, and two were instantly killed. [more inside]
posted by alona at 2:37 AM PST - 49 comments

Replay is a kind of stunt showcase short film from 2007. Features a dude chasing another dude. [more inside]
posted by juv3nal at 12:01 AM PST - 16 comments

August 2

The most valuable strategic square acreage on the planet? Or a modest, charmingly low-key town in the Blue Ridge mountains of North Carolina? The BBC provides a fascinating report on Spruce Pine - the Mineral City where the Unimin Corporation mines the world's main supply of high purity quartz from the local hills. High purity quartz is essential to the manufacture of silicon wafers.
posted by shoesfullofdust at 11:50 PM PST - 18 comments

'Artisanal butters' are favored and appreciated by cooks and gourmands -- especially those crafted by "garage entrepreneurs" from Maine [video]* and Vermont (churned by Diane St. Clair and favored by Thomas Keller at his noted restaurants, The French Laundry and Per Se). Butters from Canada, France, Ireland and elsewhere are also cherished. [more inside]
posted by ericb at 10:43 PM PST - 36 comments

Vortex Cannon : SLYT "Jem Stansfield builds a vortex cannon to pick up where the big bad wolf failed to blow over a house of brick." More details at the BBC.
posted by bwg at 10:02 PM PST - 43 comments

The awesome Michael Palin, who's comedy group used to gently mock Biggles adventure stories back in the Python days, has been reading a 1940's Biggles adventure book "Biggles Flies North", on BBC Radio 7. It's available worldwide via BBC iPlayer, five episodes available as I post, but episode one expires today, so there's no time to waste. [more inside]
posted by w0mbat at 3:26 PM PST - 32 comments


"August is the cruelest month," is what Eliot must have meant and Edna O’Brien wrote a novel called August Is a Wicked Month, and indeed, it has proved historically to be a month of dramas and crises, especially sociopolitically. Leo is a fixed, intransigent sign and can create stubborn stances in the world and it is a notorious month for coups, bombings and revolution. The late rock writer Al Aronowitz penned the line, "August is the month when wars start." Both the first and second world wars broke out in August. The first atomic bombs were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945. There were significant cold war crises in August. The Berlin wall was built in August 1961. The Tonkin Gulf crisis marked a serious escalation of the Vietnam War in August 1964. Russia invaded Czechoslovakia and ended the Prague Spring in August 1968. Gorbachev was ousted for being too liberal by communist hardliners in August 1991. Iraq invaded Kuwait in August 1990. Russia invaded Georgia last August. (slightly corrected paragraph via)
posted by infini at 9:45 AM PST - 94 comments

Umberto Eco: An Illustrated Presentation on the History of Beauty and Ugliness (running time: 52:42); Salman Akhtar: The Trauma of Geophysical Dislocation (51:55); Ronald Wright: America's Ideals and the Realities (34:52); Norman Doidge: Altered States of Mind (55:21); Lewis Lapham: The American Education System and the Gradual Disappearance of Historical Consciousness (44:09); Leo Panitch: Still a Marxist After All: Lessons and Insights for our Time (43:24); Hazel Carby: Belonging to Britain—the Historic Relationship between England and Jamaica (46:35); Gabor Mate: Close Encounters with Addiction (54:17); and Jordan Peterson: The nature of Evil and its Distinction from Tragedy (42:35) are some of the video lectures available from the Big Ideas TV show that is broadcast on TVOntario. Here's the full list of videos, and many more, but not all, episodes are available as audio downloads.
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 9:39 AM PST - 16 comments

Jack Nicholson and January Jones. Together at last. [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 9:34 AM PST - 29 comments

Bolek i Lolek and Reksio are both Polish cartoons with little dialogue and similiar animation style. Both cartoons originated in the 60s (during the Communist era in Poland), and were extremely popular for decades. Due to their general lack of vocalization (except for Bolek i Lolek's later seasons), both cartoons were easy to bring to other markets. Famously, Bolek i Lolek was one of the cartoons broadcast on Iranian television after the 1979 revolution. [more inside]
posted by Askiba at 8:07 AM PST - 11 comments

Six-year-old artist. Extraordinary understanding of perspective and shading. Side by side comparisons. Local coverage. [more inside]
posted by feelinglistless at 1:46 AM PST - 105 comments

So you've tried to quit smoking, but after having a 30-a-day habit for more than 40 years, it's tough. Really tough. So what's a man to do? Well, one way is to keep cigarettes out of arm's reach. A long way out of arm's reach. Geoff Spice is marooning himself on Sgarabhaigh Island (pron: 'Scaravay') in the Outer Hebrides, an uninhabited islet where there are no people ... no buildings ... and no tobacco shops. [more inside]
posted by woodblock100 at 12:49 AM PST - 70 comments

August 1



Geoff is on a road trip around the lower forty-eight United States visiting cities and towns with the same names as London's tube stops. He's calling it Underground: USA. [more inside]
posted by cdmwebs at 9:14 PM PST - 18 comments



Them Thangs, NSFW, 13 pages of, well, stuff. Not much reading required.
posted by mss at 7:22 PM PST - 68 comments

From Sheffield, England to Yongbyon, North Korea, nuclear plant cooling towers are coming down! And pretty much without a hitch. Things didn't go quite so well, though, for an old flour factory in Turkey, which just rolled over onto its roof. D'oh!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:01 PM PST - 34 comments

Heres Mitta -- is 140 (and counting) short comic flash animations featuring a hermit living in the desert, a space alien, a monkey, and a beautiful genie. [more inside]
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 6:16 PM PST - 2 comments

Charlie Brooker, host , columnist and inspiration for Zero Punctuation's Yahtzee is an overall snarky bloke. He has his own tribute song and a brilliant TV review programme Screenwipe. [more inside]
posted by litleozy at 5:31 PM PST - 34 comments

The Beatles 'most famous' album cover inspires dozens of imitations
posted by nam3d at 4:45 PM PST - 42 comments

On Tuesday, July 28, Arnold Schwarzenegger eliminated 100% of California domestic violence shelters' state funding. Ninety-four shelters will be affected, and the cut may lead to domestic violence victims being turned away because of a decrease in the number of staff available, a cut in programs, or shelter closure. StopFamilyViolence.org asks California residents to contact Schwarzenegger and their state legislators and request that the funding be reinstated.
posted by Four-Eyed Girl at 2:44 PM PST - 175 comments

The NYT reports that GE has brokered a deal between MSNBC and Fox News to "reconcile" Keith Olbermann and Bill O'Reilly, preventing further criticism of each other or GE. The deal went into effect June 1, the very same day Olbermann declared he was "quarantining" Fox, avoiding discussion of the channel in the future. Mr. Olbermann, who is on vacation, said by e-mail message, “I am party to no deal.” Glenn Greenwald breaks down the political consequences of the deal.
posted by mek at 1:40 PM PST - 62 comments

Maira Kalman (previously - 1 | 2 | 3) on Benjamin Franklin.
posted by ericb at 11:35 AM PST - 16 comments

NYC Grid is a photo blog dedicated to exploring and discovering The City of New York block by block and corner by corner. Updated every weekday, each post covers a new block with a focus on the mundane and ephemeral. An optimistic snapshot of New York as it is now. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:27 AM PST - 8 comments

In response to a complaint by law students at the University of Ottawa in May of 2008, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has found that Facebook is operating contrary to the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act. In other words, Facebook is breaching Canadian privacy law. Facebook has pledged to work with the Canadian government on this issue, and has 30 days to comply; if the Commissioner remains unsatisfied with their progress, they may take the case to Federal Court to force compliance.
posted by stinkycheese at 9:47 AM PST - 45 comments


Andy's Gang - 1 2 3: "The green puppet, Froggy the Gremlin, appeared in a puff of smoke, and was always interrupting the story." [more inside]
posted by kliuless at 5:55 AM PST - 10 comments


A new Latin America is emerging on the global political stage. A two part video from Al Jazeera analysing how the Obama administration may deal with Latin America and what the relations will mean on a global level.
Viva la Evolucion - - Part 1 & Part 2
Featuring an exclusive interview with Noam Chomsky, and panel Dr Celia Szusterman, Associate fellow, Chatham House; Prof Roberto Mangabeira Unger, Harvard University and former Brazilian strategic affairs minister; and Dr Andres Mejia Acosta
posted by adamvasco at 4:27 AM PST - 8 comments

'This is the story of how Factory pioneered Briton's independent pop culture, imagined a new Manchester, and blew a shedload of money:

Factory - Manchester from Joy Division to Happy Mondays'
posted by item at 1:04 AM PST - 33 comments

Astounding robotics demo featuring three dribbling, catching, stick-twirling fingers from the future, but right now
posted by mhjb at 12:34 AM PST - 20 comments