Lots of people remember the Cray-1A. And how could you not, it was a supercomputer with built-in seats. But Chris Fenton has done more than just reminisce, he he built his own 1/10 scale Cray-1A. It's not just a model, it actually runs Cray software. The only problem is there doesn't seem to be much Cray software on the net, so if you have some let him know. posted by tommasz at 12:52 PM PST - 66 comments
A now-famous cartoon on the xkcd “webcomics” site shows a stick figure typing away at his computer keyboard as a voice from outside the frame says, “Are you coming to bed?” The figure replies: “I can’t. This is important. . . . Someone is wrong on the Internet.” I have thought a lot about why people get so hostile online, and I have come to believe it is primarily because we live in a society with a hypertrophied sense of justice and an atrophied sense of humility and charity, to put the matter in terms of the classic virtues.
"Why TB you ask. The house I grew up in, from 1961 to the 1974, faced the grounds of the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium. There was a fence around the property and it was patrolled by security guards daily. That was all I knew."
Via. posted by bibliogrrl at 8:08 AM PST - 9 comments
Swarmation is a collaborative game (a bit like Everybody Edits) in which each player controls a pixel. The goal is to create formations with other players before the time expires. posted by sveskemus at 4:36 AM PST - 29 comments
Interpol have a new, self-titled album coming out September 7 (the 13th in the UK). Hey, guess what! It sounds like Interpol, so this is the kind of thing you will like, if you like this kind of thing. "Lights" (and here in HD) already has me imagining doing a thousand-yard stare out of a bus window on a cold, late November night.
The second video, "Barricade" is here (and here in HD). posted by jackrational at 6:03 PM PST - 43 comments
National Smile Week is celebrated in the second week of August, but it's not too late to start smiling. Perhaps you can get some inspiration from this gallery. My favorite, so far I think, is number 21 (NSFWish). posted by lauratheexplorer at 2:48 PM PST - 11 comments
RussianFilter: Historical Chronicles with Nikolai Svanidze is an ongoing Russian television documentary series which, starting with 1901, picks out one person per year, every year, of the 100 years of the 20th century in Russia. It's entirely in Russian, of course, but for them as speaks it, it's one fascinating perspective on Russian history, with excellent narration, copious detail, and fascinating interconnections of events, people and places. All of the episodes that are available through Google Video and various other sources, and [more inside] posted by cthuljew at 11:38 AM PST - 8 comments
Out of the blue, Sufjan Stevens, most famous for his epic indie symphony Illinois (which can be streamed from this link), released an "EP" called All Delighted People. It's 60 minutes long, you can play it all online for free, and the title track is a deliriously gorgeous 12-minute epic. He's also announced an upcoming new album, scheduled for release this October, called The Age of Adz. You can stream its first single, I Walked. [more inside] posted by Rory Marinich at 11:07 AM PST - 52 comments
Our Universe consists of between thirty to fifth billion trillion stars, arranged in eighty to one-hundred-forty billion galaxies. Our nearest neighboring star is called Proxima Centauri and it's four light years away. We need some bread, but it's really hot outside and I can't be bothered to walk around the corner. Try to make sense of the things that you think. posted by Lord_Pall at 10:37 AM PST - 47 comments
Iowa State University students have been campaigning on Facebook for Professor Tin-Shi Tam to play Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" on the carillon. On Friday, Gaga's desire for leather studded kisses in the sand rang out across campus. posted by magstheaxe at 7:57 AM PST - 50 comments
"In Japan, animation is not seen as the exclusive realm of children's and family films, but is often used for adult, science fiction and action stories, where it allows a kind of freedom impossible in real life. Some Hollywood films strain so desperately against the constraints of the possible that you wish they'd just caved in and gone with animation." -- Roger Ebert on anime, with this excerpt being related to Tokyo Godfathers. Ebert has been a fan of anime for a while, especially the works of Hayao Miyazaki. Ebert has reviewed 6 of the 18 Studio Ghibli films released to date, and even interviewed Miyazaki with a bit of fanboy glee. More reviews and videos inside. [more inside] posted by filthy light thief at 7:46 AM PST - 92 comments
GBHwas a seven-part British television drama written by Alan Bleasdale[previously1][previously2] shown in the summer of 1991 on Channel 4. The protagonists were Michael Murray (played by Robert Lindsay), the Militant Labour leader of a city council in the North of England and Jim Nelson (played by Michael Palin), the headmaster of a school for disturbed children. The series was controversial partly because Murray appeared to be based on Derek Hatton, former Deputy Leader of Liverpool City Council - in an interview in the G.B.H. DVD Bleasdale recounts an accidental meeting with Hatton before the series, who indicates that he has caught wind of Bleasdale's intentions but does not mind as long as the actor playing him is "handsome".[more inside] posted by KokuRyu at 8:16 PM PST - 22 comments
In the wake of the Port Arthur massacre, in 1997 Australia implemented a gun buyback program that reduced the stock of firearms by around one-fifth, and nearly halving the number of gun-owning households. Leigh and Neill (2010) find that the buyback led to a drop in the firearm suicide rates of almost 80%, or about 200 lives per annum (with no significant effect on non-firearm death rates). This translates into an annual benefit of $500M, or $800 000 per weapon destroyed. However, Baker & McPhedran (2006) have previosuly concluded that there was no impact on homicides. posted by wilful at 5:08 PM PST - 131 comments
Danny Gatton, 'the greatest unknown guitarist in the world' has been eulogised here previously, but that was before someone had digitised and uploaded his instructional video and put it on You Tube. Here it is: 12345678 posted by mhjb at 4:52 PM PST - 13 comments
Fortepan is a collection of 4973 found amateur photos sourced mainly in Budapest. Pick a year and browse - photos are organized in chronological order from 1900 to 1990, accessible via a slider. "Users are encouraged to use, copy, send to friends, clip or paste the photos, which are free for they are not our property." (via Szanalmas, sometimes nsfw) posted by madamjujujive at 7:01 AM PST - 19 comments
Designers'Couch is a new community of creatives whose goal is to create a vibrant community of passionate writers, artists and designers by providing them a space to showcase their work - encouraging them to network and share critiques. They also feature helpful articles to inspire, teach, and inform artists. posted by fantodstic at 6:24 PM PST - 5 comments
Founded by Eliot Wigginton in the 1960s, Foxfire has published Foxfire Magazine continuously since 1966, and the highly popular Foxfire books since 1972. Both the magazine and books are based on the stories and life of elders and students, featuring advice and personal stories about subjects as wide-ranging as hog dressing, faith healing, blacksmithing, and Appalachian history.
Fried Beer.As the Dallas Morning News reports, the Fried Beer was the result of a painful process of trial and error for creator Mark Zamble. His initial efforts kept exploding once they hit the fryer, and he kept getting burned. Zamble has already applied for a patent and trademark for Fried Beer, which appears to be a pocket of pretzel dough filled with its signature beverage. posted by furiousxgeorge at 9:59 AM PST - 54 comments
She agreed to be filmed for 90 days. A woman with AIDS is filmed briefly, every day, for 90 days, and the changes she undergoes are dramatic. The very end may make you weep, but perhaps not for the reasons you expect...
[Link is a single video hosted on Vimeo.] posted by Slap*Happy at 8:12 PM PST - 51 comments
The "Benign Violation Theory" posits that for something to be funny, three conditions must be met. First, there must be a violation of the norm. Second, the violation must be perceived to be benign. Last, both these perceptions must occur simultaneously. [more inside] posted by cosmac at 12:47 PM PST - 106 comments
Crew on a British Airways flight from London to Hong Kong accidentally trigger a message to the cabin that "This is an emergency. We may shortly need to make an emergency landing on water." The pilot then had to get on the PA and calm everyone's nerves. This probably caused even more panic than the famous message on BA Flight 9 in 1982, when the caption announced "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are doing our damnedest to get them under control. I trust you are not in too much distress." posted by kaszeta at 11:06 AM PST - 51 comments
"Michel de Montaigne, whose essays transformed Western consciousness and literature, was not capable of solving basic arithmetic problems. And most other people would not be able to do so either, if not for the invention of decimal notation by an unknown mathematician in India 1500 years ago." The Greatest Mathematical Discovery? (expanded pdf) a paper written for the US Dept. of Energy makes this assertion based in part on the work of Georges Ifrah. [via] [more inside] posted by jessamyn at 6:36 PM PST - 44 comments
The American Society of Magazine Editors and Amazon.com have announced the finalists for best magazine covers of the year. There are 12 categories: News & Business; Most Controversial; Sport & Fitness; Lifestyle; Science, Technology & Nature; House & Home; Fashion & Beauty; Funniest; Entertainment & Celebrity; Most Delicious; Sexiest; and, Best Vampire. Favourites: Obama with Google-eyed glasses, Colbert looking crazy on skates, Ryan Reynolds's abs, and a couple of great-looking hotdogs. posted by anothermug at 6:20 PM PST - 24 comments
Today, Deadspin leakedfinancialdocuments detailing the finances of several MLB teams, including a few that are getting revenue sharing money. They show that several of MLB's "poorest" franchises turned a profit due to these cash infusions. [more inside] posted by reenum at 2:05 PM PST - 56 comments
Best selling authors Jennifer Weiner and Jodi Picoult speak out about how the New York Times treats "chick lit": "when a man writes about family and feelings, it's literature with a capital L, but when a woman considers the same topics, it's romance, or a beach book - in short, it's something unworthy of a serious critic's attention."[more inside] posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:36 AM PST - 85 comments
Cheap Flights by Fascinating Aida is a new song from a trio of satirical women who have been making people laugh for over a quarter of a century. As they say on their homepage "It started by going fungal, then it went bacterial, and is in severe danger of going viral. Hurrah! We write a hit - it's only taken 27 years!". Other notable songs include their ode to viagra Getting it, White's Blues, and an old gem Time, from 1987. posted by handee at 5:29 AM PST - 9 comments
Four years after being spawned Fraser River Sockeye salmon return to the same creeks in which they were born to mate, spawn and die. Salmon have a strong preference for heavier returns every four years. Prior to 1913 this cycle peaked every second odd year (IE: 1905 - 1909 - 1913). However in 1913 (a year that had a record high 31 million fish harvested) construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway along side the Frasier river resulted in massive rock slides that prevented most of the returning fish from making it to their ancestral streams. Clean up efforts in subsequent years and the construction of fish ladders at Hell's Gate saved the Salmon from extinction and switched peaked returns to every second even year (IE: 2010 - 2014 - 2018) but numbers of fish returning were way down. Until now. This year's projected returns are the highest since 1913's record year and not far short of it. This is bound to make the organizers of Salute to the Sockeye very happy. [more inside] posted by Mitheral at 9:45 PM PST - 37 comments
Do we live in a world where there is magic and meaning, or is it all just chance? Radiolab meets two young women who share a nearly unbelievable story of coincidence and fate. Then they consult with statisticians for a very different take on the same story.
This short audio documentary is charming and delightful. A Lucky Wind won a Best Documentary: Honorable Mention Award in the 2009 Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition as well as the 2009 AAAS Kavli Science Journalism Award (Radio Documentary). [more inside] posted by storybored at 8:45 PM PST - 92 comments
"The Japanese Tradition" was a series of nine short, parody "How To" videos that gently mocked the formality of Japanese culture, from comedy duo Rahmens (ラーメンズ) and Japan Culture Lab. They're available on DVD, but nearly all of them can be seen on YouTube, including Sushi and Ocha (tea). [more inside] posted by zarq at 4:26 PM PST - 54 comments
YOUR BRAIN ON COMPUTERS “Almost certainly, downtime lets the brain go over experiences it’s had, solidify them and turn them into permanent long-term memories,” said Loren Frank, assistant professor in the department of physiology at the university, where he specializes in learning and memory. He said he believed that when the brain was constantly stimulated, “you prevent this learning process.” posted by wherespaul at 3:55 PM PST - 42 comments
The message of Majora's Mask. Majora's Mask was always the strangest of the Zelda series for me and if you also felt like there was something going on in that game that you couldn't quite put your finger on, this analysis should shed some light. Or will at least make you want to play it again. posted by litleozy at 10:43 AM PST - 48 comments
I Was with Coco. "If you’ve ever seen a criminal standing before a firing squad and felt jealous of all the attention he was receiving, then you would have loved writing for Conan O’Brien." [via] [more inside] posted by kirkaracha at 10:06 AM PST - 29 comments
A Letter To My Students A letter from Michael O'Hare, professor of Public Policy at UC Berkley to his students. He lets them know about how the world of his generation cheated them, both by their own and their choices in government leaders, who all fell along the wayside due to the swindle, and how they can pick themselves up by the bootstraps to right it. posted by deezil at 8:33 AM PST - 77 comments
Journeyman Pictures has uploaded nearly 4000 videos to YouTube. Many of these are trailers for the documentaries they sell, but they have also posted hundreds of full-length videos. Most are for short documentarie, but there are a lot of features too. It's somewhat daunting to explore, but the playlists are a good place to start, and so are the shows: Features, Shorts, News and Savouring Europe, a European travelogue series. Here's a few interesting ones: Gastronauts, about French culinary students working to make astronaut food more palatable, Demon Drummers, about student Kodo drummers, India's Free Lunch, about the effects of free school lunches on Indian society, The Twitter Revolution, about YouTube and Twitter's role in the 2009 Iranian uprising, Europe's Black Hole, about Transnistria, the breakaway region of Moldova, Small Town Boy, about a gay male carnival queen in a small town in England, The Vertigo of Lists, Umberto Eco talks about the ubiquity of lists in modern culture and Monsters from the Id, about scientists in the science fiction films of the Fifties. posted by Kattullus at 11:06 PM PST - 10 comments
The list of New York artists who died of AIDS over the last 30 years is countless, and the loss immeasurable. Last Address uses images of the exteriors of the houses, apartment buildings, and lofts where these and others were living at the time of their deaths to mark the disappearance of a generation. The film is a remembrance of that loss, as well as an evocation of the continued presence of these artists work in our lives and culture.(via) posted by Horace Rumpole at 8:32 PM PST - 26 comments
The Pinball Ninja has assigned himself a daunting task: repair 500 pinball machines in the 365 days of the year 2010! He's a little behind at the moment (#289 at last count), but the journey is still entertaining, and filled with insights into pinball repair. [more inside] posted by luvcraft at 8:21 PM PST - 14 comments
Web of stories - "There are few things more interesting or more pleasurable than to watch someone tell a good story. And one story always leads to another." posted by unliteral at 6:53 PM PST - 5 comments
This year is the 40th anniversary of the publication of Deliverance. "Dickey wrote about men, neither dudes nor (although they were fathers) dads. The men in “Deliverance” meet real monsters and recognize their ability to become, in Dickey’s phrase, countermonsters." posted by Xurando at 5:33 PM PST - 68 comments
The Perfect Five posts five songs per week(ish): a recent hit, a cover, a classic, a remix, and a wildcard. "A music blog for people who don't have time for music blogs." posted by theodolite at 2:05 PM PST - 10 comments
This past Saturday evening a woman dumped a rescue cat into a garbage bin on the side of a residential street in Coventry, U.K. Fifteen hours later owner Darryl Mann: "I came down to feed Lola on Sunday morning but couldn’t find her anywhere. It was really hot day outside and I searched nearby alleyways but suddenly heard a tiny meowing coming from the bin. I looked inside and I found her in the bin, she was terrified and covered in her own mess....At first I thought she’d somehow climbed inside the bin herself but when I checked the CCTV I was gobsmacked to see some a woman had done it deliberately." Mann posted the video to YouTube and Facebook in an effort to find the perpetrator. As a result, the woman was identified by this morning. [more inside] posted by ericb at 10:11 AM PST - 249 comments
On August 16th 1951 a number of people in the quiet southern French town of Pont St.Esprit began to fall ill. Stomach pains were soon followed by violent and often terrifying hallucinations. Local hospitals were soon overwhelmed and more than thirty people were taken to asylums in nearby towns. It was soon decided that the cause was bread poisoning and the evidence pointed to just one Bakery. The reason, it was believed was 'ergot', a fungal infection found in Rye bread which had often caused mass poisonings in Medieval times. Journalist Hank Albarelli, however, claims that a recently released CIA memo shows that the CIA were in fact testing LSD on the inhabitants of the town. [more inside] posted by dng at 9:48 AM PST - 56 comments
"If you spend 72 hours in a place you’ve never been, talking to people whose language you don’t speak about social, political, and economic complexities you don’t understand, and you come back as the world’s biggest know-it-all, you’re a reporter." - PJ O'Rourke visits Kabul posted by TheOtherGuy at 4:03 AM PST - 55 comments
Have you ever found yourself frustrated while reading some stupid comments written on a website? We've all been there. This addon, CommentBlocker, is the perfect solution for us who get annoyed daily on comment posts. Firefox only. (via) posted by twoleftfeet at 3:09 AM PST - 38 comments
The area of each icon is proportional to the sum of the reach of all sites using that icon. ... The largest icon (Google) is 11,936 x 11,936 pixels, and the whole diagram is 37,440 x 37,440. posted by Joe Beese at 9:47 PM PST - 22 comments
Our minds boggle at how the wolf could become the chihuahua, the Saint Bernard, the poodle and the Komondor. Artificial selection was likewise responsible for transforming the humble wild mustard plant Brassica oleracea into cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and the breathtaking fractal Romanesco, all in the span of a few centuries. [more inside] posted by overeducated_alligator at 6:36 PM PST - 54 comments
"During the 1860s, several photographers based in Moscow and St. Petersburg produced series of cartes-de-visite showing Russian 'types.' These remarkable portraits provide a fascinating record of working-class townspeople, artisans, street vendors and peasants, some staged performing an activity, such as drinking tea or gaming, and some photographed in the performance of their occupation." posted by gman at 1:55 PM PST - 22 comments
Pay Up! "Got a blog that makes no money? The city (Philadelphia) wants $300, thank you very much." [...] "After dutifully reporting even the smallest profits on their tax filings this year, a number — though no one knows exactly what that number is — of Philadelphia bloggers were dispatched letters informing them that they owe $300 for a privilege license, plus taxes on any profits they made." posted by Fizz at 11:30 AM PST - 95 comments
From the BBC blog of documentary filmmaker Adam Curtis: Experiments in the Laboratory of Consumerism 1959-67: "I have quite a lot of film from the archives that was shot in the Madison Avenue agencies in the mid 1960s, and I thought I would put some sections up. It is great because it shows some of the major advertising men and women of the time, many of whom are the real-life models for characters in Mad Men." Includes a 9-minute video interview with the late HertaHerzog. [more inside] posted by zarq at 7:43 AM PST - 17 comments
When Parents Won't Cut the Cord. As a reaction to helicopter parents (who read books about the stages of grief so they can cope with their kid's growing up), colleges are literally shutting the gates on parents who can't let go. posted by dzaz at 4:01 AM PST - 274 comments
"If, through this deluge, there emerges a last man, a Noah to carry on, that Noah must be all of us. Even then the outcome is uncertain. All we know for sure is that the 40 days and 40 nights of this deluge of pollution and erosion began centuries ago. Now we are living through--and dying through--its last hours on this Ark." [more inside] posted by maxwelton at 3:18 AM PST - 5 comments
The Indian government describes their electronic voting machines as 'perfect', but has never permitted an independant evaluation. A team of three academic researchers received access to a machine from an anonymous source, and demonstrated several flaws. Concerns are being expressed in India. At 5:30 this Saturday morning, police arrested Hari Prasad, one of the research team, at his home, transporting him to Mumbai.
[more inside] posted by These Premises Are Alarmed at 10:30 AM PST - 31 comments
It's about ethnomusicology, immigrants, and a tiny bit about depression. Read about Ian Nagoski and the music he discovered in a box of records that survived a foreclosure (WaPo link - register or bugmenot). Listen. Podcast. Buy some. posted by ersatzkat at 6:43 AM PST - 9 comments
The American Great Plains rival the Serengeti, according to National Geographic, but unlike in apparently more progressive Africa, the USA never protected the plains on a large scale. Now private interests under the The American Prairie Foundation are buying up land in Montana hoping to create a multi-million acre preserve that would be the largest privately funded conservation land venture on the planet, bigger than Yellowstone National Park, that one day may see the return of great migrating herds of bison, pronghorn antelope, deer and elk. Not all Montana ranchers are happy with the new Serengeti neighbor. posted by stbalbach at 12:14 PM PST - 33 comments
Facebook Places is the latest creation of the Facebook team. Similar to Foursquare, it seeks to make it easier for people to share their location with their friends. Perhaps predictably, people are publicizing steps for how to disable it on your Facebook account. Over at Slate, writer Farhad Manjoo debates the impact Places might have on society.
Ready, set, go! posted by elder18 at 2:41 PM PST - 69 comments
A Warm Hug from a Cold Algorithm: Ta-Nehisi Coates checks out an inner-city school where every student takes a diagnostic test daily, and then is assigned individual work and tutelage based on a computer's nightly re-assessment. posted by darth_tedious at 1:52 PM PST - 29 comments
Telephoneme: Even if your Alphabet Conspiracy succeeds and you destroy the books, machines have no minds of their own. They are easily confused by different voices and different accents. It is the brain of man that tells them what to do. [more inside] posted by filthy light thief at 11:14 AM PST - 10 comments
Is our present defined by decisions we make in the future? And maybe we don't know who killed JFK because the universe hasn't decided yet. A Huffington Post science blogger discusses the nature of history from a quantum perspective. To quote Stephen Hawking, "The histories of the universe depend on what is being measured, contrary to the usual idea that the universe has an objective observer-independent history." [more inside] posted by GnomeChompsky at 10:35 AM PST - 95 comments
"This is crack cocaine," Bush solemnly announced, holding up a plastic bag filled with a white chunky substance in his Sept. 5 speech on drug policy. It was "seized a few days ago in a park across the street from the White House . . . . It could easily have been heroin or PCP."
In 1989 the White House came up with the idea of having George H.W. Bush hold up a bag of crack on national television in order to illustrate how bad the US drug problem had gotten. They decided to have a drug buy set up in Lafayette Park, directly across the street from the White House, to obtain the props for his speech. They contacted a DEA agent who set up a drug buy with a Spingarn High School senior with no prior arrest record, but things didn't go as planned: [more inside] posted by Challahtronix at 10:26 AM PST - 86 comments
In coming months, The [Los Angeles] Times will publish a series of articles and a database analyzing individual teachers' effectiveness in the nation's second-largest school district — the first time, experts say, such information has been made public anywhere in the country. This article examines the performance of more than 6,000 third- through fifth-grade teachers for whom reliable data were available.[more inside] posted by Anything at 9:59 AM PST - 61 comments
A lot of old advertising, like the copy here, reads like literate AOL kids. They spell and capitalize and punctuate, but they're still hype machines stuck on exclamation marks and shouting and… boldface and underlines. Today, the fashion is for much shorter ad copy. If sound came along today, we'd come up with a catchphrase and call it a day. "Hear the difference." In 1929, if you didn’t have at least five catchphrases, some capitalized buzzwords, and several exclamation marks, you just weren't with it.[more inside] posted by The Winsome Parker Lewis at 7:38 AM PST - 6 comments
Tyler Cowen wonders if there will be a helium crisis. Nobel Prize Winner Robert Richardson says Yes, because in 1996 Congress passed an act requiring that this strategic reserve, which represents half the Earth's helium stocks, be sold off by 2015. As a result, helium is far too cheap and is not treated as a precious resource. The problem has been around for years. Most helium is NOT used for balloons but rather in industry, and in the US most helium comes from a few natural gas fields in the mountain states.Only 15 commercial plants worldwide have the ability to separate helium from other gases and to purify it.
[Previously, see also LHC Accident] posted by Blake at 5:33 AM PST - 45 comments
"The idea behind this game was to push how large of a single Movieclip I could make each level, and in the process pay tribute to my absolute favourite game on the PS2, Shadow of the Colossus." posted by griphus at 9:50 PM PST - 21 comments
Rock Band 3 features something new called "Pro Mode." What makes it Pro? Well, first of all, instead of the little colored flashers, the guitar and bass lines will stream down in tablature. Second, the guitar tracks in the game can also be played on the new Fender Squier Stratocaster (embedded video contains a couple of swear words), which is an actual guitar with Rock Band controller functionality. posted by KathrynT at 9:29 PM PST - 80 comments
It's a nice day for a KRULL WEDDING. Back in 1983, a dozen lucky couples were married as a promotion for the 1983 scifi swashbuckler Krull. This is weird enough, but what's even more baffling is that Columbia Pictures scheduled this wedding before Krull even came out. posted by Strawman at 9:08 PM PST - 84 comments
"Ever since the time of dinosaurs, man has told jokes. Humor has been evolving for literally millions of years. And many historians now believe that the current era may very well be the funniest time in the history of history. We’ve moved from an era of knock-knock jokes to a more sophisticated and mature form of comedy that represents the culmination of man’s struggle to evolve: The Deez Nuts Joke." [more inside] posted by dhammond at 4:08 PM PST - 83 comments
Climate change and the vuvuzela leave mark on Oxford Dictionary of English. Other words and phrases introduced for the latest edition include 'toxic debt', 'staycation', 'cheesebal' and 'national treasure'. To balance them out among the 2,000 or so new items there are a few more left-field choices.
Among them are 'cheeseball', which refers to someone or something lacking taste, style or originality, and the more disturbing phenomenon of 'hikikomori', the Japanese word for the acute social withdrawal that occurs in some teenage boys. posted by Fizz at 1:47 PM PST - 18 comments
Perhaps following the original Stig, the current masked driver on Top Gear announced they would write an autobiography. Un/fortunately the secrecy clause of his contract has been brought up, and the lawyers rear their heads. There is talk-talk of 'human rights' issues. British radio talk shows seem to be amused (no links fellows, alas) posted by LD Feral at 11:27 AM PST - 27 comments
Yeasayer's first album was so deeply 'World Musicky' you'd be forgiven if you thought they were from Kathmandu or Uzbekistan rather than Brooklyn. Their second album is somewhat more accessible, but their videos...well, "Ambling Alp" is full of people without clothes (semi-blurred NSFWness!) or without faces or made of clay or liquid metal, and "O.N.E." is a visit to a sci-fi rave and a game of tetra-dimensional-backgammon with a CGI morphing dude. But their newest, "Madder Red" features Veronica Mars' Kristen Bell and her pet... uh... welll... WTF IS THAT THING?!? posted by oneswellfoop at 2:52 AM PST - 27 comments
Health, Grooming, and Medicine in the Viking Age. "John of Wallingford, the abbot of St. Albans Abbey wrote in his chronicles that the Norse invaders in England were far more attractive to Anglo-Saxon women since, unlike Anglo-Saxon men, they combed their hair daily, took baths weekly, and laundered their clothing regularly." posted by rodgerd at 12:28 AM PST - 48 comments
Scottish researchers have developed what they call a “super” biofuel using by-products of whiskey production. Given the enormity of Scotland’s £4 billion ($6 billion) whiskey industry, scientists say there is the potential for whiskey biofuel to emerge as a significant source of fuel for cars and even airplanes. posted by stbalbach at 6:36 PM PST - 40 comments
Today, Mexico announced new, tighter tariffs on American goods, including restrictions on U.S. chewing gum. Some say it's because of Teamsters, but the hatred of American chewing gum may harken back to a 19th century military coup. Exiled after numerous attempts to rule Mexico as a military dictator, General Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna (yes, that General Santa Anna) spent part of his time in exile in -- of all places -- Staten Island. Santa Anna planned to fund his new army with a secret asset: he intended to sell chicle to the Americans. Although the General thought it had more uses, inventor Thomas Adams found the stuff fun to chew on. A few years later, Adams flavored his gum, inventing Black Jack Gum, the oldest continually-made chewing gum in the United States. Sadly, due to recent tariffs, General Santa Anna's army-building Black Jack chewing gum will now cost 20% more to export to Mexico. posted by AzraelBrown at 4:53 PM PST - 16 comments
'In 1951, there wasn't a more passionate rivalry in sports than the Brooklyn Dodgers and the New York Giants. Giants fans hated Dodger fans. Dodger fans hated Giants fans. Fathers passed it on to sons. In August, the Giants were thirteen and a half games out of first place. That's insurmountable. Your season's over. But mnh-mnh. Giants come back from thirteen and a half games, fall into a first-place tie with, guess who -- the Brooklyn Dodgers. Now, they play a playoff game to see who gets to go to the World Series and the Dodgers have it won, right? Until a guy named Bobby Thomson hit what they called "the shot heard 'round the world."' -- Sports Night.
Bobby Thomson, who hit the possibly the most famous home run in baseball history, hasdied at age 86. [more inside] posted by ricochet biscuit at 10:24 AM PST - 43 comments
Fraktur mon amour: Ruud Linssen’s Book of War, Mortification and Love is a collection of “essays on voluntary suffering” that works as a specimen of the Fakir blackletter typeface issued by merry pranksters Underware. Bored already? Well, try this on for size: It’s “printed in the author’s blood.” posted by joeclark at 9:59 AM PST - 12 comments
One psychology professor, looking at the oversupply of PhDs for a very limited number of academic jobs, thinks that programs should simply stop admitting PhD students, and has decided not to add any others to her own lab. posted by grouse at 8:09 AM PST - 119 comments
After making his 1967 gangster film Branded to Kill, director Seijun Suzuki was fired from the Nikattsu studio and didn't find work again for ten years. He sued for wrongful termination, but was still blacklisted. Still, he has managed to amass an impressive body of work. [more inside] posted by dortmunder at 4:00 AM PST - 12 comments
A Series of Questions is an ongoing photo project that "explores the power dynamics inherent in the questions asked of transgender, transsexual, genderqueer, gender non-conforming, and gender-variant people." posted by lullaby at 10:51 PM PST - 38 comments
Blago walks, mostly. Short and sweet: Jury was hung on 23 counts, convicted him on 1. That count was "lying to federal investigators" when he told them that he didn't care about nor was involved with fundraising. Max jailtime for this one is 5 years. They were, reportedly, 11-1 on all others. [more inside] posted by gjc at 6:52 PM PST - 58 comments
Gifts from The King of the Internet. Observe, Falconer; the great consulting detective and pervert. His early years as a male prostitute had quite ruined his spine, although they'd also gifted him with his sharp senses and preternaturally strong tongue. Consider also, Cathcart Zen; chemical atrocity and monument to manhood. [more inside] posted by Lorc at 12:11 PM PST - 13 comments
All of this helps to explain the recent trouble English professor Lynne Rosenthal had at a Starbuck's on New York City's Upper West Side when she ordered a plain multigrain bagel. [more inside] posted by nomadicink at 6:51 AM PST - 341 comments
The Student Teacher Achievement Ratio (STAR) project was a large-scale, four-year, experimental study of reduced class size. This year researchers examined the life paths of almost 12,000 children (now adults) from Project STAR. They found [PDF] the kids who learned more in kndergarten were more likely to go to college, less likely to become single parents, more likely to be saving for retirement and they were earning more. They estimate that a standout kindergarten teacher is worth about $320,000 a year in extra income for the entire class. The NYT Has More. posted by Blake at 4:16 AM PST - 32 comments
One more thing to ease our collective guilt: OrganicGolf. "Opened eight years ago, the club is thought to be the only completely organic golf course in the United States, its 18 holes groomed without the use of a single synthetic pesticide, fertilizer, herbicide or other artificial chemical treatment." posted by Xurando at 3:07 AM PST - 8 comments
"It was two final actions in the weeks before Mr. Morrissey's death that his family and friends believe pushed him over the edge. First, Mr. Genoways sent an e-mail message to Mr. Morrissey in mid-July, 10 days before his death (a copy of which The Chronicle has obtained), telling Mr. Morrissey that he had "engaged in unacceptable workplace behavior." [Second,] On the morning of Mr. Morrissey's death, Friday, July 30th, Mr. Genoways sent Mr. Morrissey another e-mail message, says Mr. Morrissey's sister, accusing Mr. Morrissey of ignoring a plea for help from a man who had worked under dangerous conditions to help VQR with a recent story. Ms. Morrissey says Mr. Genoways wrote that in ignoring the man, Mr. Morrissey had put the man's life at risk." A look into the death of Virginia Quarterly Review editor Kevin Morrissey. (Previously) posted by geoff. at 2:25 PM PST - 45 comments
Radio, RIAA: mandatory FM radio in cell phones is the future. 'Music labels and radio broadcasters can't agree on much, including whether radio should be forced to turn over hundreds of millions of dollars a year to pay for the music it plays. But the two sides can agree on this: Congress should mandate that FM radio receivers be built into cell phones, PDAs, and other portable electronics. The Consumer Electronics Association, whose members build the devices that would be affected by such a directive, is incandescent with rage. "The backroom scheme of the [National Association of Broadcasters] and RIAA to have Congress mandate broadcast radios in portable devices, including mobile phones, is the height of absurdity," thundered CEA president Gary Shapiro. Such a move is "not in our national interest."
"Rather than adapt to the digital marketplace, NAB and RIAA act like buggy-whip industries that refuse to innovate and seek to impose penalties on those that do."
But the music and radio industries say it's a consumer-focused proposition, one that would provide "more music choices."' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 2:22 PM PST - 96 comments
Many have pointed to the debilitating payments that Haiti had to make to France to compensate slave owners at the begining of the country's history as the key reason why it has been mired in poverty ever since - in stark contrast to it's neighbour the Domican Republic. Now there are calls for France to repay $23 Billion via an open letter. Of course, the US has had it's own debate over this sensitive issue for a while now. posted by helmutdog at 12:34 PM PST - 41 comments
The great jazz photographer Herman Leonard is dead at 87. Leonard took photos of some of the best, including Art Tatum, Dizzie Gillespie, Sarah Vaughan, Charlie "The Bird" Parker, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday and Miles Davis -- to name a few. He led an interesting life, which included losing thousands of prints (though not, fortunately, the safeguarded negatives) to Hurricane Katrina. Here are a few of his shots. Previously on Metafilter. posted by bearwife at 12:02 PM PST - 6 comments
Bammi is an easy little distraction game I've had saved to my bookmarks bar for a couple years now. It just occurred to me that others might like it, too. [more inside] posted by phunniemee at 8:16 AM PST - 50 comments
FACTUM.To produce the series of works collectively titled FACTUM (2010), Candice Breitz conducted intensive interviews with seven pairs of identical twins and a single set of identical triplets in and around Toronto during the summer of 2009, footage from which she then edited seven dual-channel video installations (and one tri-channel video installation). Like Robert Rauschenberg's near-identical paintings FACTUM I and FACTUM II (both 1957), from which the series borrows its title, each interviewee in FACTUM is an imperfect facsimile of their twin: their apparent identicality is soon disrupted by a host of subtle differences.FACTUM KANG, FACTUM TREMBLAY, FACTUM MISERICORDIA, FACTUM TANG, FACTUM McNAMARA. posted by shakespeherian at 7:31 AM PST - 11 comments
Relatives of the passengers, survivors, and crew of the RMS Titanic are planning a Centenary Cruise on April 8th, 2012, 100 years after the sailing of the ill-fated liner. (The actual centenary of the sailing is April 10th.) [more inside] posted by pjern at 9:12 PM PST - 54 comments
Sixth-grader Jackson C. Frank was horribly burned when the boiler at his Cheektowaga, New York, elementary school exploded March 31, 1954, killing fifteen of his classmates. While recovering from his injuries, Frank was introduced to the guitar, and the insurance settlement he received a decade later helped fund a trip to England, where he recorded his first and only album. [more inside] posted by Knappster at 6:30 PM PST - 34 comments
In all my years of architecture school and practice, there seems to be a pervasive myth that my job is pretty and easy. Here, I reveal the painful, ugly truth about why it takes so long to build a building, what it is exactly that we do, and why that's not creamer you smell in my coffee. posted by Joe Beese at 5:35 PM PST - 47 comments
Glass Candy is singer Ida No, whose vocal stylings have been compared to Nico and Debbie Harry, and producer Johnny Jewel, who cites as his influences Italo disco, freestyle, Krautrock, hip hop, new wave, and '80s cop show and John Carpenter soundtracks. "The group has also said that stores could appropriately file their music between Olivia Newton-John, Suicide and Schoolly D." Here for example, they mash up 'Mind Playing Tricks On Me' by the Geto Boys with 'Iko Iko'. And here is a cover of Kraftwerk's Computer Love. [more inside] posted by puny human at 5:03 PM PST - 27 comments
The Culture, in its history and its on-going form, is an expression of the idea that the nature of space itself determines the type of civilisations which will thrive there ... The thought processes of a tribe, a clan, a country or a nation-state are essentially two-dimensional, and the nature of their power depends on the same flatness ... The contention is that our currently dominant power systems cannot long survive in space; beyond a certain technological level a degree of anarchy is arguably inevitable and anyway preferable.[more inside] posted by memebake at 11:57 AM PST - 78 comments
The website for LA 36 Public Access [WMA plugin required to view shows]
is where you should be when you want incredibly diverse programming to come at you right this second. And by "incredibly diverse programming," I mean "what the hell is this." Absorbing niche programming is offered together with some of TV's greatest inexplicabilities.
frontsection.net is a tasteful, politically right-on and truly curatorial take on aggregating web content. Careful, combined with an MF habit, this is going to eat up a lot of hours. Although the site is MetaFilter-inspired, all links are the fruit of one intrepid reader whose work, it must be admitted, sometimes grinds to a halt for up to a week at a time. posted by Roachbeard at 10:59 PM PST - 36 comments
Raising Chicago: An Illustrated History.Lilli Carré takes a look at an unusual civic project: 'Mid-19th-century Chicago was an emerging titan of agribusiness, a burgeoning transit hub, a potential star of the Midwest—and a disease-infested swamp in danger of being reclaimed by Lake Michigan. By 1855, with roads knee deep in sludge, city hall faced a massive undertaking: hoisting Chicago out of the muck by raising the streets and structures as much as 14 feet.' More about the raising of Chicago. (via) posted by shakespeherian at 10:33 PM PST - 12 comments
“Living until 150 years old is impossible in the natural world,” said Akira Nemoto, director of the elderly services section of the Adachi ward office. “But it is not impossible in the world of Japanese public administration.”
Up until the end of July, no one knew how many people over the age of 100 were missing in Japan. Now, officials are scrambling to check on the elderly.[more inside] posted by Ghidorah at 9:25 PM PST - 57 comments
The Menstruation Machine: an invention created by artist Hiromi Ozaki. "As a female designer I had one big problem I wanted to solve. "It’s 2010, so why are humans still menstruating?" "Fitted with a blood dispensing mechanism and lower-abdomen-stimulating electrodes, the Menstruation Machine is a device which simulates the pain and bleeding of an average 5 day menstruation process of a human (As a female designer I have done my best to simulate my own, at least)." Also: Menstruation Machine - Takashi's Take is a music video about a boy ‘Takashi’, who builds the menstruation machine in an attempt to dress up as a female, biologically as well as aesthetically, to fulfill his desire to understand what it might feel like to be a truely 'girly' girl. He determinedly wears the machine to hang out with his kawaii friend in Tokyo, but…" posted by Fizz at 6:49 AM PST - 83 comments
Paula K. Shimatsu-u, who worked behind the scenes at Twin Peaks, has a book coming out with previously unpublished photos from on and off the set. Wired has a gallery that boasts, among other delights, Michael Horse reading a book beside a deer's head, and Sheryl Lee with Sherilyn Fenn wearing, respectively, a lovely bobble cap and a very fetching jumper. posted by Stan Carey at 3:43 AM PST - 15 comments
The Age of Uncertainty is my new favorite blog. It's by a gentleman bookseller who works in a warehouse in Sussex processing lorryfuls of used books. He shares the most interesting things he finds, commenting with wit and sensitivity. He also writes entertainingly about his everyday life. Let me point you towards his series of extracts from a diary that came to his warehouse, detailing the life of Derek, an employee of the government who converted to Mormonism. It was a fairly normal life, but the excerpts are fascinating. Here are the entries in order: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6. He also posts beautiful images he finds, such as Victorian color plates: 1 and 2. Still, it is the remains of ordinary lives washing up on his shores that most enthralls me, such as this tear-inducing post about a family photo album which was sent to his used books warehouse. posted by Kattullus at 8:33 PM PST - 27 comments
Bringing It All Back Home. The relatively long-running (since 2006) webcomic Bellen! will come to a close in early September as its author goes on to other things (pdf). In preparation for the end of the series, the creator is taking "a longer eye-opening look into the origin of Bellen!" which dispenses with the strips regular old timey-yellowing paper style "because there are no more veneers in Bellen! it’s the pure unadulterated truth from here on out." An interesting look at the creative process in the digital age. posted by ND¢ at 10:53 AM PST - 11 comments
12 Events that Will Change Everything is an interactive article from Scientific American that offers rich information on potential major discoveries or cataclysms that could change the world, as well as their chances of happening. The list is a surprisingly sane look at future discontinuities as these sorts of lists go: it includes human cloning, artificial life, asteroid collisions, ice caps melting, and room temperature superconductors. For less sanity, see fifty or so ways the world could end at Exit Mundi. posted by blahblahblah at 10:24 AM PST - 50 comments
Yesterday the conditions for the Hindenburg Omen, a combination of technical analysis indicators suggesting an increased probability of a market correction were all met (maybe) for the first time since 2008. Fortuitous timing for the soon to be released movie of the same name, if no one else. (Previously). posted by BigSky at 9:50 AM PST - 23 comments
Noam Chomsky A brief interview with Chomsky. Starts with some I/P stuff, then talks about Bush and Obama and then his new book.
"The ones you are concerned with are the victims, not the powerful, so the slogan ought to be to engage with the powerless and help them and help yourself to find the truth. It’s not an easy slogan to formulate in five words, but I think it’s the right one." posted by marienbad at 5:39 AM PST - 31 comments
"... some guests turn off all the room lights, turn on the train set lights and play with the diorama until dawn." Room 1304 of the Akihabara Washington Hotel in Tokyo (Japanese link) used to be a twin, but the second bed was removed to make room for a train set featuring 30 meters of track and a model Tokyo Tower. The room is available for 'only' 23,000 yen (weeknight rate), but be warned, you are expected to bring your own trains to run on the track (rental trains apparently also available). See some video of the room in this TV news report, read about it in this (English) news story, or follow along with the room's own Twitter feed (also in Japanese). posted by woodblock100 at 3:25 AM PST - 8 comments
"Graphic Atlas is a new online resource that brings sophisticated print identification and characteristic identification tools to archivists, curators, historians, collectors, conservators, educators, and the general public." posted by lucia__is__dada at 2:20 AM PST - 2 comments
Am I supposed to be laughing or taking notes? Comic Charles Fleischer, who played Carvelli on Welcome Back, Kotter and voiced Roger Rabbit, gives a Ted talk which degenerates into what appears to be a dissertation about the number 37 and its relationship to string theory, delivered in a rapidly shifting sequence of accents; watch the audience get more and more uncomfortable as they try to figure out whether they're watching a stand-up routine, a Kaufmannesque prank, or a guy going crazy right before their eyes. TED should have known what they were getting; Fleischer has been performing some form of this routine for decades. (Warning: numbered suit.) Transcript of the routine.Fleischer's strange myspace page. (Warning: strange music/talking on click which I can't figure out how to turn off.) posted by escabeche at 5:45 PM PST - 17 comments
Did 'Star Wars' become a toy story? Producer Gary Kurtz looks back “The toy business began to drive the [Lucasfilm] empire. It’s a shame. They make three times as much on toys as they do on films. It’s natural to make decisions that protect the toy business, but that’s not the best thing for making quality films.” He added: “The first film and ‘Empire’ were about story and character, but I could see that George’s priorities were changing.” (via) [more inside] posted by octothorpe at 3:18 PM PST - 131 comments
At the 1938 Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme in Paris. each of fifteen artists were given a dressmaker's mannequin as their canvas and encouraged to transform the figure in any way they desired.
The artists included (in order of appearance in this video) Salvador Dalí, Óscar Dominguez, Marcel Duchamp, Léo Malet, André Masson, Joan Miró, Wolfgang Paalen, Kurt Seligmann, Yves Tanguy, Marcel Jean, Max Ernst, Espinoza, Maurice Henry, Sonia Mossé, and Man Ray. Here are some stills. posted by adamvasco at 2:36 PM PST - 3 comments
"The risk reduction associated with the daily consumption of most statins is more powerful than the risk increase caused by the daily extra fat intake associated with a 7-oz hamburger (Quarter Pounder®) with cheese and a small milkshake...Although no substitute for systematic lifestyle improvements, including
healthy diet, regular exercise, weight loss, and smoking cessation, complimentary statin
packets would add, at little cost, 1 positive choice to a panoply of negative ones."
Is having free statin drugs at the fast food counter by the napkins and ketchup packets a good idea? Some doctors think the idea has merit (original paper .pdf). Hmmm... maybe if they were minty flavored. posted by cross_impact at 9:31 AM PST - 69 comments
World War II was a time that called for many things from many different people. However, one Polish soldier stepped above and beyond the call of his nature. He carried ammunition, he helped his squad members get better at wrestling, and he drank and smoked with the rest of them - Wojtek, the soldier bear. [more inside] posted by lizarrd at 9:07 AM PST - 48 comments
"I have started an archive of photographs deemed "too hard to keep." The reason you can't live with the photo or photo album I do not need to know..." posted by showbiz_liz at 6:38 AM PST - 37 comments
A family traveled to France and Germany in 1938 and shot this footage which features two appearances by Adolf Hitler. It's creepy seeing this Nazi spectacle shot by an amateur. It's a perspective I don't know if I've ever seen. The video opens in France and the Nazi footage starts around 1:45.
The collector writes: "The Basement Collection presents: An 8mm film bought at an estate sale back in the 90's. This reel is part of a series of a family vacation movies to Europe in 1938. On this reel the family visits France and then Germany. The footage of Hitler is from a celebration in the Berlin Stadium on what I think is a May Day celebration (May 2, 1938) then another celebration at Berlin's Lustgarten. (on May 1st). (I think the reel was edited together out of order)." posted by zzazazz at 5:14 AM PST - 95 comments
A message from Dan Simmons. Dan Simmons SFF author shares some thoughts in his most recent blog post on publishing, writing, and the latest ideas for an upcoming novel: "The Five of Hearts" - In December of 1880, Henry Adams and his wife Clover moved into a rented house at 1607 H Street on Lafayette Square in Washington, D.C.. That was also the year they became lifelong friends with two men who had previously been mere acquaintances -- assistant secretary of state John Hay and the hazel-eyed bachelor, explorer, surveyor, mining expert, and general man-of-action in the West, Clarence King. The two, along with Hay's wife Clara, became constant callers at the Adamses small but wonderfully select 1607 H Street salon. In the words of one biographer, the five "delighted in their delight of one another" and began calling their little daily tea-time group "the Five of Hearts." Henry James and Sherlock Holmes will also make appearances. posted by Fizz at 4:44 AM PST - 75 comments
Got a lot of tomatoes? Looking for some thing different to DIY? How about DIYketchup? "Whether it's pickles or preserves, DIY food is all the rage. But when I told a group of food-loving friends that I was planning to make my own ketchup, their response was muted. First, there was an awkward pause. Then, one piped up with the question that everyone must have been thinking: Why? Ketchup, apparently, is an exception to the everything-is-better-if-you-make-it-yourself ethos. " posted by Xurando at 5:54 PM PST - 61 comments
The Point of No Return.In the gap between Washington’s and Jerusalem’s views of Iran lies the question: who, if anyone, will stop Iran before it goes nuclear, and how? As Washington and Jerusalem study each other intensely, here’s an inside look at the strategic calculations on both sides—and at how, if things remain on the current course, an Israeli air strike will unfold. posted by lullaby at 10:37 AM PST - 91 comments
Christiane Kubrick, widow of film director Stanley Kubrick, talks with the Guardian about her marriage to the film director, his lost project about the Holocaust, and his love of the waltz [via | Flash req'd]. posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:21 AM PST - 4 comments
Dommune is a fairly new nightclub in Tokyo. It's only open Sunday through Thursday night and they close at midnight. The room only holds 50 people. Nevertheless, the place attracts top-flight talent; Jeff Mills, Derrick May, Claude Young, Prosumer, and Shed have all performed. What's the gimmick? Every party is streamed live. (from mnml ssgs) [more inside] posted by mkb at 9:36 AM PST - 20 comments
"The TV Wheel was a television experiment created by and starring Joel Hodgson, of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame. Cable network HBO ordered a pilot, but ultimately passed on picking up the show. The pilot episode eventually aired once on Comedy Central as a special presentation following the last new episode of MST3K to be broadcast on that network."*
The pilot, bookended by introduction segments, is right through this door: [more inside] posted by item at 12:54 AM PST - 41 comments
We see it every day on signs, billboards, packaging, in books and magazines; in fact, you are looking at it now — the Latin or Roman alphabet, the world’s most prolific, most widespread abc. Typography is a relatively recent invention, but to unearth the origins of alphabets, we will need to travel much farther back in time, to an era contemporaneous with the emergence of civilisation itself. The origins of abc. posted by netbros at 5:26 PM PST - 24 comments
Pelé and Maradona: the glorious, ludicrous feud between soccer's two biggest stars. In the summer of 2000, FIFA, which does not understand computers, decided to celebrate the arrival of the millennium by hosting an online poll. Its object: to determine the best soccer player of the past 100 years, with the victor to be fêted at a gaudy banquet in Rome. The organizers of the vote assumed it would be won by Pelé, soccer's silky ambassador, who'd been cheerfully ensconced in his Greatest of All Time sinecure for 40 years. posted by Fizz at 3:59 PM PST - 31 comments
Scandal brewing at Harvard. Marc Hauser, evolutionary biologist/psychologist who is an authority on how animalsthink, is taking a year's leave of absence because a university review has concluded that there were "irregularities" in the conduct of his research. One article is being withdrawn. Others under suspicion. Hauser is well-known for his studies of cotton-top tamarin monkeys. Not clear if he will be required to give up his edge.org page. His most recent book is about morality (previously). posted by cogneuro at 3:36 PM PST - 117 comments
How did the World Wide Web look before this Internet boom,(1) before it became a riot for star backgrounds, bouncing envelopes and under construction signs?(2)
Before web design, there was Prof. Dr. Style. [more inside] posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:01 PM PST - 43 comments
The Puffins of Norway make their home in nests along cliffs and in caves. These nests were inaccessible to human hunters. The hunters needed a special kind of dog. A spelunking dog. [more inside] posted by dogmom at 1:36 PM PST - 18 comments
Newt Gingrich: The Indispensable Republican. In the twelve years since he resigned in defeat and disgrace, he has been carefully plotting his return to power. As 2012 approaches, he has raised as much money as all of his potential rivals combined and sits atop the polls for the Republican presidential nomination. But just who is Newton Leroy Gingrich, really? (SLEsquire) posted by The Card Cheat at 12:35 PM PST - 95 comments
Dr. Karen Woo, one of the 10 medical aid workers slain in Afghanistan, kept a blog of her experiences. I've spent the last two days doing Afghan medicals - en masse I have been terrifying Afghan men with my femaleness and daring use of the stethoscope.[more inside] posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:43 AM PST - 45 comments
To celebrate its tenth birthday, popular site DeviantART unveils Muro, a gorgeous HTML5 drawing tool that handles multiple layers and a variety of artistic brushes. No account required. posted by Rory Marinich at 6:13 AM PST - 25 comments
“I think she was a very nice lady who was in way over her head,” said (the local SPCA general manager). “She was probably in a situation where she started with one chihuahua and it had babies. People get attached to them and feel that nobody can do as good a job [caring for them], so they end up keeping them. Then other people find out she is the chihuahua lady — her boss died and gave her 12. Pretty soon, her babies are having babies and it’s out of control.” SPCA swamped with tsunami of chihuahuas posted by KokuRyu at 10:20 PM PST - 52 comments
The Music-Copyright Enforcers“A few years back, we had Penn, Schoen and Berland, Hillary’s pollster guys, do a study. The idea was, go and find out what Americans really think about copyright. Do songwriters deserve to be paid? Absolutely! The numbers were enormously favorable — like, 85 percent. The poll asked, ‘If there was a party that wasn’t compensating songwriters, do you think that would be wrong?’ And the answer was, ‘Yes!’ So then, everything’s fine, right? Wrong. Because when it came time to ask people to part with their shekels, it was like: ‘Eww. You want me to pay?’ ”[more inside] posted by availablelight at 5:35 PM PST - 121 comments
Despite very strong denials last week from Google and Verizon that they were not discussing ways around Net Neutrality, Google and Verizon held a conference today to announce their agreement to the establishment of price-tiered network services, dividing the current Internet into a "neutral public Internet" that remains "open" (and which preserves access to YouTube and other Google properties), and a set of paid, priority channels that Verizon and other telecoms can use to deliver certain other types of content at higher prices, particularly over cell networks and whatever future infrastructure the Internet will be carried over. posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:43 PM PST - 224 comments
Pakistan is suffering the worst flooding for over 80 years. (NYTimes) (Guardian) At least 1600 people are dead, and approximately 15 million are affected by this tragedy. Millions of acres have been swamped by the floods. The United Nations has rated the floods as the greatest humanitarian crisis in recent history. (Wikipedia) (The Big Picture) posted by seanyboy at 11:29 AM PST - 49 comments
On money and happiness Takeaway: buying stuff doesn't make you happier, although investing in experiences that strengthen social and familial bonds can.
Interestingness: savings increased to 6.5% this year and some experts think this is permanent; conspicuous consumption is shifting to calculated consumption; “There’s massive literature on income and happiness. It’s amazing how little there is on how to spend your money.” [more inside] posted by erikvan at 10:33 AM PST - 57 comments
Interested in teaching yourself some statistics? Here is an excellent online and interactive statistics textbook developed at UC Berkeley, and also used at CUNY, UCSC, SJSU, and Bard. Here is the syllabus for the course at Berkeley. And here are some insightful reflections from the professor on developing Berkeley's first fully approved online course. posted by AceRock at 9:23 AM PST - 18 comments
Though the Boredoms have long been renowned for non-traditional, envelope pushing, and occasionally confrontational performances, frontman eYe's earlier group, Hanatarash, were reputed to have been even more extreme, trading in ultra-violent displays with no regard for performer or audience safety. In particular, there was a story of eYe driving a full-sized backhoe through the back wall of the venue. It's the kind thing you hear about and assume that some level of exaggeration is going on...until you see the pictures. [more inside] posted by anazgnos at 8:25 AM PST - 24 comments
"The goal of this journey is to find cuisines from every United Nations member state, within New York City limits, in alphabetical order. " For your gustatory delight, here is The Confined Nomad posted by spicynuts at 7:54 AM PST - 33 comments
"But this wasn't quite enough and so then I got the idea of having all thirteen of the lowest tones of the piano played together... In other words, I was inventing a new musical sound later to be called 'tone clusters'... Anyway, this was my professional debut as a composer."Henry Cowell's musical autobiography. Cowell was one of the most important figures in 20th-century American music, described by John Cage as "the open sesame for new music in America." In this hour-long program recorded four years before his death in 1965, compositions from every stage in Cowell's career are contextualized and discussed by the man himself. posted by No-sword at 8:15 PM PST - 10 comments
"In April 2010, Ashley Rawlings and I used community fundraising to raise nearly $24,000 to breathe new life into our book, Art Space Tokyo. My goal [in this blog post] is to outline what we did and why we did it, with the hope of inspiring anyone with an itch, gumption and a good narrative, to do the same. To bring beautiful, well-considered things into the world." posted by dobbs at 7:21 PM PST - 9 comments
Colin Berry's Spinout is a a touching, tragic story about his older brother, Kevin. Kevin competed in--and very nearly won--the All-American Soap Box Derby, but lost to Bobby Lange, the son of ski-boot magnate and engineer Robert Lange Sr.. [more inside] posted by mattdidthat at 2:10 PM PST - 19 comments
"He leaped from one rooftop to the next, like a “human fly.” When he reached for his whip, thugs scattered and miscreants wept. He once arrested forty gamblers in their lair, single-handed. He was a master of disguises..."
Confused in Catan? Conflicted about Carcassonne? Puzzled in Puerto Rico? You've heard about all these awesome new board games that are out these days, but don't know where to begin? Help is here! Scott Nicholson knows all about 'em, and will explain them in great detail in his video series Board Games With Scott![more inside] posted by JHarris at 2:31 AM PST - 56 comments
The history of Poland, in eight minutes, in CGI, from the country's exhibition at Expo 2010 in Shanghai. The film is full of blink-and-you'll-miss-it references - check the date at the bottom-left of the screen and see how many you can find! [more inside] posted by mdonley at 2:39 PM PST - 24 comments
Opening Night: October 8, 1985 at the Barbican in London. It scored mixed reviews, but word of mouth still took hold. In the 25 years since that first show, 45,000 performances have been produced in 42 countries, 308 cities and 21 languages that have been seen by 56 million people. It is the third-longest running show in Broadway history. 40 cast recordings have been released. And on October 30th, 2010, a special concert production of the play based on the book Les Miserables by Victor Hugo will take place at The 02 Arena in North Greenwich. (YouTube Video) [more inside] posted by zarq at 12:44 PM PST - 46 comments
“If you're a politician, admitting you're wrong is a weakness, but if you're an engineer, you essentially want to be wrong half the time. If you do experiments and you're always right, then you aren't getting enough information out of those experiments. You want your experiment to be like the flip of a coin: You have no idea if it is going to come up heads or tails. You want to not know what the results are going to be. ”
A Slate interview with Google Research Director Peter Norvig on Google's product development process. [via] posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 11:44 AM PST - 20 comments
"I was thinking about the recession and what that meant for talented people who may have lost their jobs. Are you still a dancer if you are not paid to perform? Or are you still a chef when you don't have a kitchen to cook in? It is about people who walk the streets with this incredible skill who could just advertise their ability any time they wanted. Dance is always a part of them and they are always dancers"
"Every pernicious practice of modern education originates from the goal of trying to segregate and control the mischievous." A teacher tries to come to grips with the contrary advice of four prominent educators in an imagined dialog. Part I, Part II. [more inside] posted by rouftop at 12:45 AM PST - 47 comments
The Curfew "is an adventure web-game created by Littleloud, published by Channel 4 and written by acclaimed comic book author, Kieron Gillen. Set in 2027 in the heart of an authoritarian security state, The Curfew could be described as a miniature Canterbury Tales set in a not-so-distant future, where citizens must abide by government security measures and 'sub citizens' are placed under curfew at night. The player must navigate this complex political world and engage with the characters they meet along the way to work out who they should trust in order to gain freedom.
Choose wisely and you could change the course of history. Choose poorly, and it'll be changed for you." posted by catchingsignals at 9:01 PM PST - 55 comments
Some say the USA is a Plutonomy-an economy dependent on the spending and investing of the wealthy. In a further sign, the top 5% of Americans by income now account for 37% of all consumer outlays (the bottom 80% by contrast share about the same). Consumer spending accounts for roughly two-thirds of U.S. gross domestic product. In a possibly worrisome sign, the wealthy are cutting back on spending. posted by stbalbach at 3:11 PM PST - 83 comments
Friday Flash Fun: Worm Food places you in control of a giant human-devouring worm of legend. Devour villagers, defile monuments and destroy settlements. [more inside] posted by uri at 2:19 PM PST - 18 comments
Yes, I'm Home. No, I Can't Pick Up Your Child. 'Diane Fitzpatrick works from home. To certain friends, neighbors and community groups, that means she's available. Ms. Fitzpatrick, a Jupiter, Fla., blogger and freelance writer, finds that PTAs, church groups and charities zero in on people like her—those who don't work in an office. "You're expected to pull the weight of all the people who can't," she says. "It's as if I have to explain what I do all day." A veteran stay-at-home mom who has been saddled with looking after the kids of working parents, Ms. Fitzpatrick says that at times she has felt like "the doormat of the neighborhood."' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 12:55 PM PST - 65 comments
Friday Flash Fun: Color Theory is a puzzle platformer about... um... color theory. And gravity switching. And aliens. Via the eternal font of pleasant time-wasters, jayisgames. posted by macmac at 12:11 PM PST - 19 comments
Justice in BrooklynMy bike got stolen last night and goddamn if I didn’t have it back before noon today, thanks to a curious but powerful mixture of internet savvy, a responsive police force, and one very special “Law and Order” fan. posted by shannonm at 12:07 PM PST - 64 comments
Russian Satirical Journals of 1905. MeFi's own peacay presents a selection of the amazing images produced after the lifting of censorship in Russia following the 1905 Revolution: "For a few brief months the journals spoke with a great and unprecedented rage that neither arrest nor exile could silence. At first their approach was oblique, their allusions veiled, and they often fell victim to the censor’s pencil. But people had suffered censorship for too long." Much more available at Beinecke, USC, and Wisconsin. posted by languagehat at 10:50 AM PST - 8 comments
The Music of Jacques Brel is an article by music journalist Amy Hanson about the career of pop music legend Jacques Brel and his effect on popular music in the English language. A lot of songs and covers are mentioned in the article, below the cut are links to the songs that I could find videos of online. [more inside] posted by Kattullus at 1:48 AM PST - 49 comments
Amy Sedaris has appeared as a frequent guest on Letterman (David Letterman's late night talk show in the US), usually delivering rapid-fire improvisation to a bemused Dave and Paul under the guise of an interview. With the magic of the internet, some of these videos are now on YouTube. [more inside] posted by shadytrees at 6:48 PM PST - 34 comments
Massive Right-Wing Censorship Of Digg Uncovered. "A group of influential conservative members of the behemoth social media site Digg.com have just been caught red-handed in a widespread campaign of censorship, having multiple accounts, upvote padding, and deliberately trying to ban progressives. An undercover investigation has exposed this effort, which has been in action for more than one year." posted by zwemer at 4:45 PM PST - 247 comments
Heat Waves in a Swamp: The Paintings of CharlesBurchfield. "Burchfield’s primary subject was landscape, often focusing on his immediate surroundings: his garden, the views from his windows, snow turning to slush, the sounds of insects and bells and vibrating telephone lines, deep ravines, sudden atmospheric changes, the experience of entering a forest at dusk, to name but a few. He often imbued these subjects with highly expressionistic light, creating at times a clear-eyed depiction of the world and, at other times, a unique mystical and visionary experience of nature." I recommend the slide show in the first link as the best introduction. More audio slide shows from Peter Schjeldahl here. posted by puny human at 1:43 PM PST - 8 comments
The Rise of the Pseudo-Conservative. Out of context, one could be forgiven for reading the following words as a critique of the political philosophy embraced by the modern-day Republican party and the various Tea Party groups organized around it: "It can most accurately be called pseudo-conservative. . . because its exponents, although they believe themselves to be conservatives and usually employ the rhetoric of conservatism, show signs of a serious and restless dissatisfaction with American life, traditions and institutions. . . Their political reactions express rather a profound if largely unconscious hatred of our society and its ways — a hatred which one would hesitate to impute to them if one did not have suggestive clinical evidence." [more inside] posted by saulgoodman at 1:12 PM PST - 91 comments
Shin Sang-ok (1926 - 2006) was a Korean movie writer, director and producer, who studied film in Japan and returned to South Korea, where he gained fame and became the uncontested leader of the film industry in the 1960s, in a time when regulations on the industry limited other studios. In the 1970s under the Fourth Republic of South Korea, the film industry was even further limited, which lead to Shin's studio being closed. Things went from bad to worse, when "the Orson Welles of South Korea" was kidnapped by request of Kim Jong Il, the son of North Korea's dictator, Kim Il Sung. The reason? Kim Jong Il wanted the nation's film industry to promote the virtues of the Korea Workers' Party to a world-wide audience. After being imprisoned for four years, Shin was reunited with his ex-wife (who was also a captive of North Korea) and the given relative freedom, producing seven films in North Korea. While setting up a distribution deal to share Kim Jong Il's vision with a broader audience for a Godzilla-like monster movie, Shin and his wife escaped and sought political asylum in the United States. Their freedom was possible because of that last film for Kim, entitled Pulgasari. But Shin's life in movies was not over yet. [more inside] posted by filthy light thief at 1:08 PM PST - 14 comments
"It's great to be alive!" - Parents! Traumatise your children into safe behavior with this Official Safety Booklet. You'll never hide in a pile of leaves again. posted by Artw at 11:27 AM PST - 67 comments
99 Weeks Later, Jobless Have Only Desperation. 'In June, with long-term unemployment at record levels, about 1.4 million people were out of work for 99 weeks or more, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.' While the Senate ponders a debate on tax cuts for the rich, jobless claims hit highest level since April. With such unemployment, frustration and despair grow as job searches drag on. 'In her well-thumbed, leather-bound Bible, Terri Sadler recently highlighted in bright pink a passage in the Gospel of Matthew. In it, Jesus urges his followers not to “worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.” But Ms. Sadler’s tightening throat and halting breath when she tries to read the words aloud make it clear that she is having trouble mustering enough faith to follow them.' [more inside] posted by VikingSword at 11:15 AM PST - 82 comments
How to design cigarette cartons to be less convenient in order to discourage smoking? Designed to Annoy: a theoretical look at designing inefficient packaging. posted by AceRock at 8:34 AM PST - 138 comments
"The meteoric rise of Facebook raises four general questions . . . How is it possible for a teenager, however brilliant, to create a multibillion-dollar online business in such a short time? How likely is such a business to flame out? What, if any, legal protection from competition should be given to the ideas that power these businesses? And how far will social networking erode privacy or have other social consequences, good or bad?" Richard Posner (the federal judge and University of Chicago law professor best known as one of the pioneers of the "law and economics" movement [Wikipedia]) answers these questions in his brief history and critique of Facebook. (This is a printer-friendly version that may cause a print dialogue box to pop up, but it's the only link that will work unless you subscribe to The New Republic. The article is nominally a book review but spends barely any time talking about the book that's supposed to be reviewed.) posted by Jaltcoh at 8:02 AM PST - 41 comments
"...Connie set a land speed record on her 1350cc Suzuki going more than 209 mph and Nick, though not a record for the type of bike he was on, managed to top 220. She said setting the mark provided the biggest high of her life. He said he'd like to get up to 300 mph one day. She's 70 years old. He's 80." [more inside] posted by maxwelton at 3:36 AM PST - 48 comments
Topic of Cancer. "One fine June day, the author is launching his best-selling memoir, Hitch-22. The next, he’s throwing up backstage at The Daily Show, in a brief bout of denial, before entering the unfamiliar country—with its egalitarian spirit, martial metaphors, and hard bargains of people who have cancer." Christopher Hitchens writes about his cancer. [Via] posted by homunculus at 10:18 PM PST - 94 comments
According to Comics Alliance, 'if you missed the teaser footage from the Avengers panel at Comic-Con it's online (for now)!' But who would want to watch the real teaser trailer when there are so many fake ones to select from? [more inside] posted by eccnineten at 9:31 PM PST - 31 comments
Arcade Fire devise 'synchronised artwork' for The Suburbs. Montreal band develop album art in the digital age, providing bonus material to accompany the download of their latest LP. "The idea is simple... Tightly sync a series of images with specific moments in a song using the m4a format. Like some podcasters do, but with micro chapters for each lines of the lyrics. In addition to that, we were able to add good old hyperlinks also synchronised to the song. This gives the possibility for the band to add, at any moments, all kinds of references related to each song. They plan to change and update those links occasionally." says: Vincent Morisset, director of Arcade Fire's Miroir Noir live DVD posted by Fizz at 7:52 PM PST - 51 comments
"On September 11, 2001, thousands of first responders heroically rushed to the scene and saved tens of thousands of lives. More than 400 of those first responders did not make it out alive. In rushing into those burning buildings, not one of them asked 'What God do you pray to?' 'What beliefs do you hold?'"
With a ruling scheduled today on Prop 8 — the California ballot measure that took away the right to marry from same-sex couples — Dave Fleischer has an in-depth analysis of all of the polling data on Prop 8, and his findings include some counter-intuitive numbers, like that the confusing wording actually ended up helping the No vote more than the Yes. posted by klangklangston at 8:25 AM PST - 619 comments
Undercover investigators posing as students interested in enrolling at 15 for-profit colleges found that recruiters at four of the colleges encouraged prospective students to lie on their financial aid applications — and all 15 misled potential students about their programs’ cost, quality and duration, or the average salary of graduates, according to a federal report. NY Times[more inside] posted by Think_Long at 8:23 AM PST - 48 comments
"Abwärts is a West German post-punk group from Hamburg. Members Mark Chung and FM Einheit would leave the group in the early 1980s to join the Berlin-based band Einstürzende Neubauten. Their best-known recordings include the single "Computerstaat" ("Computer State") (1980) and the LP's Amok Koma (1981) and Der Westen ist einsam ("The West Is Lonely," 1982), the latter in particular being regarded as a classic of West German postpunk." posted by electricsandwich138 at 6:48 AM PST - 13 comments
Before the CIA, there was the Pond -- a highly secret, unacknowledged, and semi-autonomous intelligence agency created by the US military in 1942 as an alternative to the OSS. According the Associated Press, "The organization counted among its exploits an attempt to negotiate the surrender of Germany with Hermann Goering, one of Adolf Hitler's top military leaders, more than six months before the war ended; an effort to enlist mobster Charles 'Lucky' Luciano in a plot to assassinate Italian dictator Benito Mussolini; identifying the location of the German heavy water plants doing atomic research in Norway; and providing advance information on Russia's first atomic bomb explosion." But the CIA says that its record was "largely one of failure and impermanence." posted by twirlip at 8:04 PM PST - 6 comments
"When I was in New York, I fell in love with some wild ideas in the shape of a woman. An English teacher, who was hard, but hard like a job I never wanted to end. But to her, I wasn't nothin' but a day at the office. That's what they call a Double Negative." posted by redsparkler at 6:52 PM PST - 34 comments
The Dream of a Lifetime is the inspiration for the recent movie Inception. "That contraption is made to help psychiatrists examine the dreams of their patients! The wearer of such a brain-scanner can mentally enter into the dreams of the subject!" posted by flarbuse at 6:45 PM PST - 29 comments
Tourist Lanes & New Yorker Lanes
One afternoon, field agents of Improv Everywhere "...created separate walking lanes for tourists and New Yorkers on a Fifth Avenue sidewalk. Department of Transportation 'employees' were on hand to enforce the new rules and ask pedestrians for their feedback on the initiative." posted by ShawnStruck at 6:38 PM PST - 72 comments
RACER is a recreation of a Wipeout-style racing game using "a modified vintage arcade machine, a RC model car with a wireless camera,
an a self-constructed racetrack/game level made entirely from cardboard." [via] posted by brundlefly at 3:07 PM PST - 16 comments
Breaking the Fourth Panel: Neonomicon and the Comic Book Frame (1, 2) Alan Moore’s recent Lovecraftian comic dissected. (MLYT, Possibly NSFW language and SAN loss) posted by fearfulsymmetry at 1:34 PM PST - 18 comments
Not Sarah Palin's Friends. Slate's script kiddies snag Sarah Palin's Facebook comments stream before its edited by Team Palin. Not a hack, per se, because it was publicly available on Facebook for minutes at a time, but interesting. The deletions amount to a real-time look at how much effort and care Palin puts into protecting her public image. It's not just the number of posts that are screened out that gives some indication of how seriously Palin's team is monitoring things. posted by Cool Papa Bell at 12:30 PM PST - 79 comments
Edward Mike Davis was the owner or Tiger Oil, an oil company operating in Houston during the 1970's. His irascible memos have been an Internetsensation for the past fewyears.
Good things are not meant to last forever, and in 1980, Tiger Oil filed bankruptcy. Davis' hatred of people did not confine itself to the office, as this case shows. Tiger Oil was in litigation in relation to the bankruptcy filing as late as 1989. posted by reenum at 10:18 AM PST - 45 comments
You're a 39 year old American citizen born in New Mexico. Though it has convicted you of no crime, the US government is trying to kill you. Your father retained the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights to seek a federal court order restraining the killing. Two weeks later, the Treasury Department labeled you a "Specially Designated Global Terrorist". This makes it a criminal offense for the ACLU or CCR to provide you with legal representation. [more inside] posted by Joe Beese at 10:13 AM PST - 278 comments
"[Bank robber Peter Barry] Lawrence, 71, made his getaway in his wheelchair, with $2,000 in cash on his lap... he took a meandering route down Seventh Avenue until the police caught up with him five minutes later. But that was all part of the plan." And an embedded reporter in Afghanistan notes that "many young soldiers told me that they actually live better in the army, even when deployed, than they did in civilian life, where they couldn't make ends meet, especially when they were trying to pay for college or raise a family by working one or two low-wage jobs" (p. 1). Meanwhile, "parents of means are now resorting to buying franchise businesses to keep their adult children employed." Economic life in contemporary America. posted by rkent at 9:29 AM PST - 48 comments
“Several of you told me that I was “going to die” if I drank 13 beers while running the San Francisco Half Marathon. I did not die. I puked three times, blacked out for miles 11 and 12, and needed five hours to finish. This is my story.” posted by sveskemus at 6:34 AM PST - 64 comments
The Guardian and Time write about the rise of neo-Nazi groups in Mongolia. The view (or at least a view) from Ulan Bator. Pertinent images from the Guardian and from Time's photographer here and here respectively. posted by Dim Siawns at 4:19 AM PST - 24 comments
MAC Cosmetics and Rodarte partnered to create a makeup collection. Kate and Laura Mulleavy, the sisters behind Rodarte, "were struck by the ethereal landscape and the impoverished factory workers floating to work at dawn in a sleepy, dreamlike state." People started questioning the sensitivity and intelligence behind the naming, particularly a glittery pink nailpolish named Juarez. [more inside] posted by nadawi at 1:37 AM PST - 31 comments
The Books is a collaboration between musicians and found sound archivers Nick Zammuto and Paul de Jong. If you're not familiar with their music, allow me to recommend giving their newest album, The Way Out a listen over at NPR (where you can no longer stream the album in its entirety, but individual tracks are still available for your listening pleasure). Two videos are already available—the summer camp hit A Cold Freezin' Night and We Bought The Flood, which was 'directed' by archival image researcher Rich Remsberg. Since The Way Out's release Nick has been proceeding track by track through the album, explaining and annotating the techniques, instruments, and ideas used on each song—and resulting in a collage of thoughts as powerful and varied as The Books' collage of sound. [more inside] posted by carsonb at 10:21 PM PST - 20 comments
"The mark of a real writer is that she cares deeply about literary joinery, about keeping the lines of her prose plumb. That’s what makes writers writers: to them, prose isn’t just some Platonic vessel for serving up content; they care about words. Any chief product officer who says “quality online does not equal craftsmanship” is channeling the utilitarian gospel of the managerial class, an instrumentalist vision of journalism that presumes writing, online, is just a turkey baster for injecting content into the user’s brain." Mark Dery, on writing for the web. posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:36 PM PST - 86 comments
Before the internet, nerds communicated through AmateurPress Associations (APAs). Members wrote and photocopied their individual 'zines on a subject, then mailed them to a central mailer, who collated and mailed the completed sets to all the members. The earliest APAs were founded by printers and amateur journalists. The National Amateur Press Association is the oldest, founded in 1876. Later APAs were often the province of science fiction and comic book fans. They are still around [pdf]. A lot more inside... [more inside] posted by marxchivist at 5:38 PM PST - 12 comments
They Draw and Cook: The art world intersects with the food community at They Draw & Cook, a clever blog started earlier this year by sibling design and illustration team Nate Padavick and Salli Swindell (together they run Studio SSS). Each day, They Draw & Cook features a new recipe illustration by a practicing artist, illustrator, or designer. The recipes vary in both style and content and are submitted from all over the world. posted by Fizz at 5:24 PM PST - 7 comments
10k Apart — Fond memories of the 5K Awards resurface with this modern spin on the idea. It’s time to get back to basics — back to optimizing every little byte like your life depends on it. Your challenge? Build a web app in less than 10 kilobytes. posted by netbros at 5:21 PM PST - 29 comments
"Tubes of space borscht are on sale in the museum gift shop. “There are white and black tubes. On the white is written: ‘BLONDE.’ On black one: ‘BRUNETTE.’ "
Astronauts relate challenges of life in space. posted by ambient2 at 4:24 PM PST - 17 comments
After announcing that Lebron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwayne Wade would join the Miami Heat in July the team almost immediately sold out their seasons tickets packages while placing another 6,000 on the waiting list. The result? All 30 seasons ticket salespeople were fired on friday becasuse as a staffer put it `They let us go because there was really nothing left to do anymore.''[more inside] posted by jourman2 at 11:31 AM PST - 57 comments
Mitch Miller has died at the age of 99. In the years before rock'n' roll took over, Miller, as an A&R man first at Mercury, and then at Columbia Records, signed and produced hits for a large stable of stars, including Patti Page, Frankie Laine, Johnny Mathis, and Tony Bennett. While he did have a disdain for rock music later, he did offer Elvis Presley a contract and brought Bob Dylan and Aretha Franklin into the fold. Artists like Frank Sinatra would later criticize Miller for forcing novelty tunes like Mama Will Bark on them.
In 1955 he had a number one hit with the old Civil War-era standard, The Yellow Rose of Texas.
Beginning in 1961 he turned a series of records into a hit NBC series, Sing Along with Mitch and his goateed face became a television staple as he encouraged viewers at home to follow the bouncing ball and join in. The show helped launch the career of future Sesame Street star Bob McGrath and inspired the Flintstones parody Hum Along with Herman. posted by evilcolonel at 10:59 AM PST - 37 comments
Sherlock Holmes is running around modern day London. Airing Sundays on BBC1, The BBC has reinvented the master dectective and his sidekick for 2010. Sherlock is cast as a modern day "high functioning sociopath" while Watson is a former army doctor with PSTD returned from Afghanistan. It has been written and created by Doctor Who writers Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat.
Reviews are in and the update is a stellar success. The series has been sold worldwide, however UK viewers can watch with BBC iplayer. Rumor has it that those unwilling to wait for release can find alternative sources for viewing. posted by Funmonkey1 at 3:43 AM PST - 118 comments
An ongoing drought in Niger has resulted in a famine that threatens millions of people. "These are very high levels of child malnutrition, the situation is bad," said Gianluca Ferrera, deputy director for the UN world food programme (WFP) in Niger. "The loss in harvest last year was worse than expected, and the lean season started earlier than anticipated for a larger share of the population. "In some areas, there is a 50% malnutrition rate for children under 2. Many of these children will not survive."[more inside] posted by HP LaserJet P10006 at 2:40 AM PST - 64 comments
I'm like a character in a dystopian science-fiction novel, holed up in a cave full of cultural artefacts, waiting for the young Jenny Agutter to arrive in a tinfoil miniskirt, fleeing a poisonous cloud on the surface, to check out my stash and ask me: "Who exactly was the Quicksilver Messenger Service? Who was this Virginia Woolf? What kind of man was Jonah Hex?" - Stewart Lee on comics, books, CDs and shelves. Many, many feet of shelves. posted by Artw at 8:22 PM PST - 26 comments
DJ/musician Mr. Fab and RIAA (no, not them) have released USA, a four-hour-long mix album with 335 different sources, many of them fairly unusual and most of them previously unused. It's ... fairly brilliant. [more inside] posted by WCityMike at 2:39 PM PST - 16 comments
Are you an aspiring writer of genre fiction? Would you like to workshop your stuff before submitting it to magazines and publishers, but you don't happen to have a group of local friends that you can workshop with? Critters.org is an online, highly automated fiction workshop. You submit your manuscript, it waits in a queue until its time comes up, and then it gets sent out to all the active subscribers, some of whom will hopefully send you some helpful feedback! Make sure to critique at least one story every week, though, or you lose your privileges to post your own stories to the queue. [more inside] posted by kavasa at 11:35 AM PST - 19 comments
The Anti-Defamation League has been tracking religious extremism for several decades, including anti-Islamic violence in the United States after 9/11. Nonetheless, the organization joined right-wing opposition earlier this week to the construction of Cordoba House, a 13-story Muslim community center and mosque that may be built two blocks away from the site of the former World Trade Center. The ADL's alignment with calls for "refudiation" by Republican celebrities Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich, along with other members of the GOP who are ramping up angry sentiments in voters during an election year, have puzzled and angered religious, political and cultural figures of various stripes, particularly within New York City itself. [more inside] posted by Blazecock Pileon at 2:27 AM PST - 446 comments