January 23, 2011
A quick google search for "free wordpress themes" returns quite a number of varied results. The author of Why You Should Never Search For Free WordPress Themes in Google or Anywhere Else does a quick run-down of which of the first 10 results are genuine, trustable sites, vs. how which carry themes full of malicious code. The results aren't good.
A mix created by one man's voice, some special effects pads, and a keyboard - no records, no CD's, and no MP3's (Video Clip); this week's Radio 1 Essential Mix from two time UK beat-box champion Beardyman. Previously.
How "just another homework assignment" (slyt) can (maybe even without the creator's knowledge) easily explain an analogy first coined by the philosopher Bertrand Russell (1872–1970) "Russell's Teapot" (wiki)
Roger Ebert: "In the last year or two, the world's cinema has become even more available. This instant, sitting right here, I can choose to watch virtually any film you can think of via Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, MUBI, the Asia/Pacific Film Archive, Google Video or Vimeo. At Europa Film Treasures, I can watch films none of us has heard of." Ebert on how the accessibility of film online is making for more and better film criticism from around the world "..by their early 20s, Wael Khairy of Cairo and Seongyong Cho of Seoul had seen every significant film ever made." "The best single film criticism site is arguably davidbordwell.net". [more inside]
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. A toy shilling re-imagining of an 80's cartoon show for little girls. It is sexist, racist, and homophobic. Or maybe not. It seems to be finding an audience among a periphery demographic, which some people seem to find a bit odd. [more inside]
"Feel better, look better and live longer" (video) was the credo of "Nutritionist, Author, Lecturer and Physical Culture Expert on Your Figure and Beauty", Jack LaLanne, who despite everything, passed away today of pneumonia at the age of 96, less than a week after the Slate "Fitness Issue" compared him to other "fitness gurus". [more inside]
An Australian journalist on board an icebreaker has spotted a mysterious piece of wood sitting on top of an iceberg in the Antarctic, posting photos reminiscent of the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey. Cue crazy theories about its origins. [more inside]
Yesterday, the drug manufacturer Hospira ceased its production (corporate statement) of Sodium thiopental, the first drug used in the three drug cocktail for lethal injection. (Sodium thiopental shortages previously) [more inside]
I didn’t really appreciate the concept of becoming ‘unstuck’ in time until I returned from war. Matt Gallagher gives words to the discomfort of life after 15 months in Iraq.
Catfish: Filmmakers Ariel Schulman and Henry Joost begin to film Ariel's brother Nev, a photographer who shares office space with the the pair in NYC. Nev begins an online relationship--through Facebook--with a family in rural Michigan: an 8-year-old girl, the girl's mother, and most significantly, the girl's older sister, with whom Nev develops a romantic relationship. The trio ultimately discover that all is not what it seems. The latter might describe the film critically acclaimed Catfish itself, which the makers defend as completely true. Ten reasons why Catfish is fake. Roger Ebert liked it, but doesn't seem to care if it's fake or not. Others think it's just sort of fake. More here and here.
Al Jazeera has obtained a large volume of official documents concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The confidential files, to be released in the coming days, were shared with The Guardian.
"I'm getting older, and I'm not always gonna be around the house to explain stuff to you. I know you have a lot of questions, and I want us to be open with each other. So, I think it's time you learned where blogs and tweets come from." (SLMcSweeney's) [more inside]
Every day during 2011, Bristol artist Kirsty Hall will go for a walk to release an art jar into the wild for people to find and keep. The jars thus far. Kirsty on twitter.
Paulo Coelho to Sean Parker: Did you like the movie? (seven second time delay) (question at 4:40)
Horizon asks "What is reality?" -- youtube for links for those outside the UK: 1, 2, 3, 4. It's a hard question. To help you answer it, Stanford has a set of free courses available on line by Leonard Susskind: General Relativity, Cosmology, New Revolutions in Particle Physics, Quantum Entanglement, Special Relativity, Classical Mechanics, Statistical Mechanics, The Standard Model. (Each link is to lecture 1 of a full college course of a dozen or so lectures.) If you need help with the math, the Khan Academy should help get you up to speed.
The Art of Hermann Zapf film "was produced in 1967 at Hallmark Cards in Kansas City and in my design studio in Dreieichenhain, Germany... After long discussions and the help of a lot of alcohol we started late in the night. I was sitting at a slanted glass table with a hot spotlight in my neck. Frank Robinson was lying on the floor with the camera ready for a frog-view shot. My task was to write beautiful letters with ink which dried as soon the pen touched the slippery surface of an astralon sheet." — Hermann Zapf
In 1976, in response to NASA's development of the Space Shuttle, the USSR began it's own reusable launcher program, the Buran (Snowstorm), based at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in what is now Kazakhstan. [more inside]
Activists in the UK are currently rather angry about the news that undercover cops have been sleeping around in order to infiltrate largely peaceful environmental groups - one officer even married an activist. "Everybody knew it was a very promiscuous lifestyle," ... "You cannot not be promiscuous in those groups. Otherwise you'll stand out straightaway.".
UK cosmetics company Lush cultivates an image of quirky naiveté in its marketing, even when it loses the credit card details of thousands of customers. [more inside]
The ambulance that was used to carry the body of John F. Kennedy from Andrews Air Force Base to Bethesda Naval Hospital was sold at auction last night for $120,000. Or was it? [more inside]
This interview, conducted by family friend Todd McCormack, took place in 1988, when Roald Dahl was 71. As Dahl himself said, “I have worked all my life in a small hut up in our orchard. It is a quiet private place and no one has been permitted to pry in there.” He not only let Todd McCormack inside the hut, but also have him a rare insight into how he worked, where his ideas came from, and how he shaped them into unforgettable stories. Roald Dahl passed away in 1990, two years after the interview. [more inside]
Pica is an eating disorder, that causes people to eat very strange things, like dirt and glue. But eating a couch? Is that really the same thing?