January 17, 2008
Sacred Destinations. Nearly every culture in human history has sought to encounter and honor the divine, the mysterious, the supernatural or the extraordinary in some way. This most often occurs at sacred sites - special places where the physical world seems to meet the spiritual world. From ancient wonders, to Greek temples, to Biblical sites, and everything in between, the website has a vast collection of photo galleries and maps. The website's founder also maintains a travel blog and posts recent pictures on Flickr. [more inside]
"Here is your chance to weigh in on one of the most troubling dilemmas in contemporary literary culture." "It's the question of whether the last unpublished work of Vladimir Nabokov, which is now reposing unread in a Swiss bank vault, should be destroyed—as Nabokov explicitly requested before he died." The Original of Laura was inherited by his son Dmitri Nabokov nearly 21 years ago. Now Dmitri is 73 and will soon publish the manuscript, or following his father's dying request, burn it. Which is greater, the obligation to V.N., or the obligation to art?
C'mon, you've been staring at that staring girl FPP for way too long. Let's get up and stretch. Ready? Aaaand ONE! ... aaaand TWO! ... aaannd [[POP!]] Ohmygawd are you allright? Hey... hey, what are you doing? Whoa... umm... EeeeAWW, for the love of jesus, Cut that out. I mean it. I'm going into the other room to read. [more inside]
Argument to Beethoven's 5th [youtube 5:51], a brilliant sketch by 1950s funnyman Sid Caesar, shows that you don't need words to tell a story. [more inside]
The girl who stares (her only talent) is quickly becoming a youtube phenomenon. Participate in the demise of our culture and watch her do nothing.
I come to praise Wham-O, not bury it. Despite the recent death of Wham-O cofounder Richard Knerr, coming a half-decade after the death of hos partner Arthur "Spud" Melin, let us not mourn. Instead, let us remember what Wham-O gave the world. [more inside]
Selling out is becoming trendy. Last fall, Burt’s Bees was sold to Clorox. It turned out then that former owner Roxanne Quimby bought out co-founder Burt himself in 1999 and sold 80% of the company to AEA Investors in 2004; this was just the final stroke of the pen. [more inside]
The Internet Party: When the Google's parents leave town all those Web 2.0 kids go crazy. [video via]
Climatologists at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies have found that 2007 tied with 1998 for Earth's second warmest year in a century (2005 being the hottest). More here. of course, others disagree.
Two articles on how interaction may shape the buildings, work places and urban spaces of tomorrow: Design Week's Study takes sensory approach to improve office of the future [which mentions Duncan Wilson, who works with and blogs about this stuff]; and City of Sound's The Personal Well-Tempered Environment.
Hey, bisexuals! Is your sweetheart terrified that you’ll have second thoughts after graduation? Are you trying to figure out how to tell your parents? Are presidential primary frontrunners lumping your orientation together with pedophilia and bestiality? Well, for the first two, at least, you can reassure them that bisexuality is not a phase ... by quoting SCIENCE! (pdf) (Side effects may include cheering at increasing cultural acceptance or eye-rolling at need to continue to demonstrate the obvious. Effects have been demonstrated in women only. Presidential primary frontrunners may be immune to science.)
Toymakers Hasbro and Mattel claim that the popular online game Scrabulous (available on Facebook) infringes on the trademark for the board game Scrabble. They have not yet filed suit, but have asked Facebook to desist in its alleged infringement. Scrabulous is one of the top ten plug-ins on the site, developed by brothers Rajat and Jayant Agarwalla in Calcutta, India. "There has been speculation that the challenge to Scrabulous had been launched as Hasbro and Mattel prepare their own online version of Scrabble." Electronic Arts holds the license to the electronic rights to Scrabble. Facebook users are rallying to save the game. [more inside]
fuck yeah. Canada has joined Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International in adding the U.S. and Israel to their list of countries who torture. Have we learned our lesson?
What if the Devil tricked a well-meaning computer developer into making a horrendous animal racing game? (cringeworthy YouTube link) Now we know! Yes, Cougar Interactive has a product for you. Zoo Race! The biblical flood is over, and with hardly any people around, what's Noah, God, and the animals gonna do? Why, RACE of course! The game features compelling voice work, top flight graphics, and of course... animals straddling on rockets. And to top it all off, God is the announcer! It was the best 2007 had to offer, and it's still available... so, like their web site says.. Buy the FUN game that the big game companies would not ever make. (as found at Kotaku) [more inside]
I don't cross post from other sites (digg), unless there's a good reason. Final Salute is a good reason. Additional links/background are there, but go to the slideshow. And this photo.
"The Emptied Prairie," a National Geographic article on North Dakota's ghost towns and the decline of the Great Plains. Typically amazing National Geographic photos here. Reminds me of a similar series that ran in the New York Times several years ago, which included this fascinating article by Timothy Egan.
"Geordie messiah to return - Kevin Keegan is returning to Newcastle United as manager". Thus read the official statement issued by Newcastle United heralding the improbable return of Kevin Keegan to be manager of the club, the perennial under achievers in English football. [more inside]
Darko Maver: In 1999, An artist is killed in his prison cell in Podgorica.
Early works. Writings. Culminating exhibit. His arrest. His death. [more inside]
Early works. Writings. Culminating exhibit. His arrest. His death. [more inside]
By turns touching, inspiring, and hilarious, Planet Karen is the daily comic diary of Karen Ellis.
Jallikattu, [Stunning Photographs | Jallikattu YouTube] an Indian version of the Running of the Bulls, takes place in the State of Tamil Nadu, during the Pongal festival each year. This year, the Supreme Court directed the State Government to put a halt to the practice, in vain, and the bulls were forced to participate as usual (with 129 people being gored, and many more injured). [more inside]
3191 : A year of evenings spent with Stephanie and Mav who live 3191 miles apart. Previously, a Year of Mornings.
"Researchers found that failing to publish negative findings inflated the reported effectiveness of all 12 of the antidepressants studied." See also: Serotonin and Depression: A Disconnect between the Advertisements and the Scientific Literature. [more inside]
Did the Victorian police overreact in spraying capsicum spray into spectators at the Australian open tennis on Tuesday night? The officers say they were protecting themselves, it seems not all agree and legal action might ensue. Is the Australian Open (or any international sporting contest in Australia) still a family friendly environment?
"Intended to deepen our understanding of disputes over climate change and the human contribution to it," the new 'Climate Debate Daily' is brought to you by the folks who created the well-known 'Arts and Letters Daily'. Links to everything from scientific articles through PR releases down to blog entries, are arranged on the page in 'face-off' format, with pros and cons in side-by-side columns. If you want to keep on top of the debate on climate change, it seems that you'll find no better source of information anywhere ..
"To redeem the demand tickets they have written, the balancers must in turn sell dragonslayer tickets."
Nitroeconomics (if you want to sound more scientific you can call it synthetic economics) is different. It is set in the virtual world of Nitropia, which doesn't exist but easily could.... We can use nitroeconomics to understand real situations in the real world, such as the subprime crisis, with a simple three-step process.... The first cool thing about Nitropia is that it has no financial system at all. Unlike other, inferior virtual economies, it does not distinguish between "money" and other virtual objects. A monetary token in Nitropia is an object like any other - a magic sword, an inflatable penis, or whatever. A player in Nitropia who has a lot of money just owns a lot of these tokens. There is no special, separate "bank balance."A[n Austrian-school] straightforward explanation of the present financial crisis (part 1) [more inside]