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January 29, 2010
Cormac McCarthy's Typewriter
In 1963, in a pawnshop in Knoxville, Tennessee, Cormac McCarthy bought an Olivetti Lettera 32 manual typewriter for $50. After typing 5 million words on it - including all his novels - he replaced it with an identical model purchased by a friend for $20. Last month, the original typewriter was auctioned for $254,000 to benefit the Santa Fe Institute. (previously)
posted by Joe Beese at 9:42 PM PST - 36 comments

The Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race
For 36 years, engineering students from colleges across North America (and beyond) have aspired to succeed at winter's most prestigious, most arduous, most ridiculous challenge - to build and ride the world's fastest sled . . . made of concrete. Tomorrow, if you're in the greater Hamilton Ontario area, you can witness the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race yourself. Expect to see A fair warning however, spectators who stand too close might become part of the action. [more inside]
posted by Popular Ethics at 9:05 PM PST - 24 comments

Monster Initial Stickers Name Generator
The Monster Initial Stickers Name Generator -- scanned from a trading card set released in 1974.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 7:51 PM PST - 10 comments

Dem Bones
Frank Minyard, colorful coroner of New Orleans, and a focal point for post-Katrina stories, is in a tough reelection campaign. His opponent has taken some creative liberties in putting out a commercial. [more inside]
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 5:51 PM PST - 33 comments

The Apple Core
Artists Johnny Kelly and Jethro Haynes used 3D printing to create this title sequence for the Dutch TV show Het Klokhuis. [via]
posted by brundlefly at 5:38 PM PST - 18 comments

Cruise Elroy
Cruise Elroy, by mefi's own danb, is a blog about games, specifically video games and music.

In the past, he has covered the music of Mother 3 and its battle system, gone over Ocarina of Time's music in six parts (plus Koji Kondo's favorite cadence and SSBB's OoT medley), described the use of irregular meter in videogames, pointed out the jazzy basslines of Sonic the Hedgehog, and even examined what the 1-up jingle says about the rest of the game.
posted by flatluigi at 5:32 PM PST - 24 comments

Possibly also the 17 most AWESOME Playmobil sets.
17 Least Appropriate Playmobil Sets For Children : Yep. A randomly numbered list on which several items are questionable. But really, whoever approved #1 for production was more than a little bit twisted.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 5:13 PM PST - 84 comments

Welcome to the RetroFuture
Redesigned notebooks, repurposed toys, grow-your-own breakfast, paper radios, parental pants, and more - all from the mind of design fiction enthusiast Matt Brown
posted by divabat at 5:10 PM PST - 14 comments

The Unconvincing Defense
Scott Roeder has been convicted of first degree murder after barely a half hour of jury deliberation. Apparently the jury was not even slightly swayed by the "voluntary manslaughter" defense. Here is a bit more information about Roeder.
posted by bearwife at 4:33 PM PST - 75 comments

President Obama speaks at House Republican retreat in Baltimore
President Obama spoke at length to House Republicans at their retreat in Baltimore, responding to questions after his remarks. Video (also here). Transcript. [more inside]
posted by ibmcginty at 1:18 PM PST - 223 comments

This is what the Internet is for (SLYT)
This is what the Internet is for (SLYT) A well executed virtual jam session. People from all over the world connecting in creativity. Kutiman, eat your heart out.
posted by monospace at 11:53 AM PST - 35 comments

Cat Business Trip
Cat Business Trip (SLYT)
posted by Artw at 11:53 AM PST - 71 comments

QR Code Facade
Behold the N Building, a new structure in a Tokyo shopping district that at first glance looks kind of like a giant Tetris screen until you realize that the fancy geometric design on its facade isn't merely ornamental: It's code—QR code, to be exact. What that code allows passersby to do is quite unique. [via, via] [more inside]
posted by netbros at 11:35 AM PST - 21 comments

Tora Bora: America's First Major Battle Of The Twenty-First Century
That afternoon, American signals operators picked up bin Laden speaking to his followers. Fury kept a careful log of these communications in his notebook, which he would type up at the end of every day and pass up his chain of command. “The time is now,” bin Laden said. “Arm your women and children against the infidel!” Following several hours of high-intensity bombing, the Al Qaeda leader spoke again. Fury paraphrases: “Our prayers have not been answered. Times are dire. We didn’t receive support from the apostate nations who call themselves our Muslim brothers.” Bin Laden apologized to his men for having involved them in the fight and gave them permission to surrender.
posted by jason's_planet at 10:38 AM PST - 26 comments

selleckwaterfallsandwich
Tom Selleck + waterfall + sandwich [more inside]
posted by slogger at 10:28 AM PST - 78 comments

See the world in a whole new light: Infrared
See the world in a whole new light: 100 Years of Infrared Photography (BBC blogger, Phil Coomes). You too can take digital infrared photos (in a nutshell) by using an infrared filter that screws on the front of the lens (or make your own), OR you can convert your camera to take IR photos. 26 Incredible Examples of Infrared Photography with Descriptions. The Complete Color Infrared (IR) Tutorial Guide Walkthrough (although I prefer them converted to Black & White (NSFW fine art nudes included). Beginning Infrared Photography with Digital Cameras. An easy way to test to see how sensitive your camera is to infrared (using a remote control) and (a similar page). How about a massive (on-going since May, 2007 - 51 page) forum thread on Infrared Photography Methodology and Post-processing Workflows? More links at Infrared Photography Resources and see the Flickr groups devoted specially to IR: IR World and Digital Infrared.
posted by spock at 9:56 AM PST - 19 comments

Bin Laden Criticizes U.S. for Inaction on Global Warming (SLNYT)
Al Jazeera releases a new (as of yet unauthenticated) tape in which the terrorist leader accuses the US and other large nations of inaction. Osama suggests boycotting the American dollar and quotes Noam Chomsky. [more inside]
posted by ®@ at 9:54 AM PST - 74 comments

I have one in my pillow fort.
Build a treehouse
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:22 AM PST - 30 comments

seeing whale songs
Visualizing Whale Songs "Mark Fischer, an expert in marine acoustics, has come up with another way to illustrate whale song. He uses a more obscure method, known as the wavelet transform, which represents the sound in terms of components known as wavelets: short, discrete waves that are better at capturing cetacean song."
posted by dhruva at 8:50 AM PST - 12 comments

200 Motels
WTF? Achtung! Nothing here is safe for anyone ever. Ringo Starr as Frank Zappa / Centerville / Dental Hygiene Dilemma / Lonesome Cowboy Burt / Mystery Roach / Magic Fingers / Finale / Special Bonus: Penismobile / Specialer Bonus: The Making of 200 Motels 1 2 3 [more inside]
posted by Meatbomb at 8:30 AM PST - 32 comments

Many Successful Gay Marriages Share an Open Secret
New York Times: "A study to be released next month is offering a rare glimpse inside gay relationships and reveals that monogamy is not a central feature for many. Some gay men and lesbians argue that, as a result, they have stronger, longer-lasting and more honest relationships. And while that may sound counterintuitive, some experts say boundary-challenging gay relationships represent an evolution in marriage — one that might point the way for the survival of the institution."
posted by andoatnp at 7:58 AM PST - 144 comments

"A Little While"
Haitian-born Edwidge Danticat writes a devastatingly personal account of the Haiti earthquake and its victims. From The New Yorker.
posted by deticxe at 7:33 AM PST - 19 comments