January 16, 2010

Fighting on arrival, Fighting for survival

Following the end of the Civil War, Congress enacted “An Act to Increase and Fix the Military Peace Establishment of the United States”, which … included the establishment of two regiments of cavalry and four regiments of infantry to be composed of “colored men”. For the first time in the United States history black men had a place in the regular army. [more inside]
posted by serazin at 11:30 PM PST - 11 comments

Wooden Textiles

Future textile design by Elisa Strozyk.
posted by netbros at 8:41 PM PST - 6 comments

Han to h5, check Darth Vader

We've seen Lego and Star Wars combined many times. We've even seen a basic Lego chess set. But you may not yet have seen the Star Wars: A New Hope Lego Chess Set. Fanboys and chess enthusiasts may proceed to drool. [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:30 PM PST - 37 comments

“You Were, you Are, or you Will Be a danger to national security”… not eh.

Adil Charkaoui (born 1974) is a Morocco-born permanent resident of Canada who was arrested by the Canadian government under a security certificate in May 2003. When he admitted practicing Karate, two government ministers announced it was their "opinion" that he would also "have been trained in such areas as: operating rocket-propelled grenade-launchers, sabotage, urban combat and assassination", and sought to have him detained. The ministers also noted in their accusation that "[i]t was noteworthy that one of those who participated in the hijacking of [the September 11th attacks] had taken martial arts training in preparation..." and suggested that Charkaoui represented a sleeper agent. Charkaoui was arrested under a security certificate in May 2003, which was co-signed by Solicitor General Wayne Easter, and Immigration Minister Denis Coderre. He was detained without charge or trial in Rivière des prairies Detention Centre. He was released from prison on $50,000 bail on 18 February 2005. His bail conditions include a curfew, electronic monitoring, designated chaperones for leaving his home, restriction to the island of Montreal, 24-hour police access to his home without warrant, and a prohibition on access to the internet, on the use of cell phones and on the use of any telephone except the one in his home. - In October 2009, Montrealer Adil Charkaoui was declared a free man… [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 12:44 PM PST - 48 comments

Mitsuko Uchida

Three-time Gramophone Award winner, Dame of the Empire, and, by consensus, the world's greatest living performer of Mozart's keyboard works, Mitsuko Uchida also gives great piano face. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese at 9:22 AM PST - 13 comments

Not enough women have what it takes to behave like arrogant self-aggrandizing jerks.

A great Rant About Women by Clay Shirky: (Women) "are bad at behaving like self-promoting narcissists, anti-social obsessives, or pompous blowhards, even a little bit, even temporarily, even when it would be in their best interests to do so." [more inside]
posted by bru at 9:02 AM PST - 172 comments

Acoustic Guitar Solos

Brazilian guitarist Naudo has a nice command of his instrument and a relaxed presentation. He plays acoustic guitar standards like Stairway to Heaven and House of the Rising Sun. He plays other popular tunes like Hotel California and While My Guitar Gently Weeps. I especially like his Santana covers: Samba Pa Ti, Black Magic Woman. There's lots more Naudo videos at YouTube, at Naudo's blog, and at Naudo's page on sevenload.
posted by RussHy at 7:46 AM PST - 14 comments

Dogs of Moscow

Dogs of Moscow [more inside]
posted by IndigoJones at 7:25 AM PST - 38 comments

I ain't seen nothin'.

The Dirtiest Player. Was it only last season that Marvin Harrison was still catching TD passes for Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts? Now, in the wake of a brazen but mysterious Philadelphia gunfight - many details of which are reported here for the first time - the man who holds the NFL record for most receptions in a season may yet find himself with a permanent record of a different sort. (SLGQ) [more inside]
posted by The Card Cheat at 6:32 AM PST - 37 comments

So much for the drought.

California's calm before the storm. It's just rain, right? Well, the meteorologists are publicly talking about a potentially epic storm that could trigger major flooding and mudslides, especially in areas effected by the state's widespread fires of the past few years. More ominously, though, is this internal email from CAL FIRE Division Chief Bob Wallen, which talks of the potential for "multiple large and powerful storm systems" with "a tremendous amount of precipitation . . . Much of NorCal is likely to see 5-10 inches in the lowlands, with 10-20 inches in orographically-favored areas. Most of SoCal will see 3-6 inches at lower elevations, with perhaps triple that amount in favored areas", with the potential for a massive snowfall, gusts in the 100-200 mph range in the high Sierras, possibly followed by plentiful warm rains that could melt the snow and cause massive flooding statewide. "The next 2-3 weeks (at least) are likely to be more active across California than any other 2-3 week period in recent memory."
posted by markkraft at 4:49 AM PST - 176 comments

Melty, crunchy, spicy, grilled post-modern nothingness.

Breaking news, Taco Bell will make you skinny! Not unknown for low-brow branding, Toxic Bell is following it's hedonistic Fourthmeal campaign with an appeal to "sensible choices". [more inside]
posted by Juicy Avenger at 2:09 AM PST - 150 comments

Cooking the books

Looking for a new project? Wish you were a better cook? Why not try cooking every recipe in a cookbook? Originally started by Julie Powell of Julie & Julia fame, people now register domain names for anticipated cookbooks in advance of the release date. As daunting as it seems to tackle the entirety of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, that challenge seems to pale in comparison to the epic quest of cooking all 1000+ recipes in the Gourmet cookbook. For the chef who wants a different sort of challenge, there are the particular demands of Heston Blumenthal's $250, 11.6 pound molecular gastronomy bible, The Big Fat Duck Cookbook. While the bloggers cooking through Alinea are working with isomalt and sorghum flour, the daring souls blogging Nose to Tail are wrestling with noses, tails, and all the offal parts in between. If this seems like a lonely road, maybe you'd like to join one of the group baking projects such as Tuesdays with Dorie or The Bread Baker's Apprentice.
posted by hindmost at 2:06 AM PST - 47 comments

Y Front Page Post

Indeed, at 6 million years of separation, the difference in [Y-chromosome] gene content in chimpanzee and human is more comparable to the difference in autosomal gene content in chicken and human, at 310 million years of separation.
It is commonly said that the Human and Chimpanzee genomes share 99% or more identical DNA. In a surprising development about to be published in Nature, the Y-chromosomes of these two species were found to share only 70% of their DNA, raising important questions about the mode and tempo by which speciation from a common ancestor occurred. This finding may point the finger at the evolution of different patterns of sperm-competition and mating practices within these two species.
posted by Rumple at 12:00 AM PST - 21 comments