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February 13, 2011
Opium => Silver => Tea
Recreate a part of history in High Tea, a game where you trade Indian opium in China to supply tea to England. Part of the High Society exhibit at Wellcome Collection. [more inside]
posted by mccarty.tim at 7:20 PM PST - 39 comments

A civilized Grammy winner
Baba Yetu, the much-loved theme song from Civilization IV, has won a Grammy - making it the first piece written for a video game ever to get the nod. [more inside]
posted by bicyclefish at 6:45 PM PST - 85 comments

Happy Birthday Wardell Gray
Exactly ninety years ago today jazz saxophonist Wardell Gray was born. While never a household name, among enthusiasts Gray is remembered as a gifted bebop soloist with a relaxed style and warm tone. Here he is playing Taking a Chance on Love (1952), Blue Lou (1948?), A Sinner Kissed An Angel (1950), One for Prez (1946), The Squirrel, & w/Dexter Gordon on The Chase (1952; Gray takes the 2nd solo). [more inside]
posted by The Emperor of Ice Cream at 6:05 PM PST - 11 comments

In the summer time, pockets bulging
Interactive map of direct grants by U.S. grantmakers to non-U.S. recipients. Sort by country, grant organization, year, number of recipients, dollars and other ways. 2003-2011.
posted by cashman at 5:54 PM PST - 28 comments

You are making a mistake. My logic is undeniable.
Is this the future in personal assistants? "The remarkable thing is that not only did the Anybot make it all the way to the coffee shop on its own [sic] but the Anybot was actually given service!" Could further development, crossed with visual interfaces such as Kinect lead us to the Bruce Willis' Surrogates and isolate us or is it the beginning of the uprising?
posted by deemer at 4:52 PM PST - 57 comments

Bass Jumping
Shot with a Canon 5D MarkII at high shutter speeds, this video of a bassist's hand movements show a frequency that results in amazing string wobble (Vimeo; 1.11).
posted by bwg at 4:33 PM PST - 70 comments

Why THINQon?
Mathematical logician Asaaf Peretz discusses his new "Social Thinking" site THINQon. [more inside]
posted by Sticherbeast at 3:38 PM PST - 20 comments

"Until you run out of breath."
Have you heard about face yoga? [odd SLYT]
posted by defenestration at 3:22 PM PST - 35 comments

Zeitgeist 4: Ok here's the real truth
(Warning: several-hour documentaries ahead)
Peter Joseph, the creator of the 2007 hit conspiracy documentary Zeitgeist, has come a long way from pleading 9/11 truth, attacking the foundations of Christianity, and warning of one-world governments. In his 2009 sequel, Zeitgeist: Addendum, Joseph steers away from the "man behind the curtain" theme and centers the film around a radically different thesis: money is obsolete, technology is our future, and society must be redesigned. Addendum has enjoyed a dose of mainstream discussion, but Peter ain't done.
Now it's 2011, and Joseph's third and completing installment, Zeitgeist: Moving Forward, opened with 314 screenings world wide, and the film bears even less resemblance to its grandparent. Who is this Peter Joseph guy, anyway? [more inside]
posted by Taft at 3:10 PM PST - 89 comments

Neutrinos on ice
The IceCube Neutrino Observatory has been completed in Antarctica. What is a Neutrino anyway? Here is an informative video, which seems to draw at least some inspiration from this(NSFW), that explains what neutrinos are and how we can detect them.(via) [more inside]
posted by AElfwine Evenstar at 2:24 PM PST - 32 comments

Open a second tab
200 romantic songs for a Valentine's Day themed playlist on YouTube, as suggested by readers of The J-Walk blog. 12 hours worth of many obvious choices, combined with just as many sweet surprises
posted by growabrain at 12:41 PM PST - 24 comments

Subterranean
A brief survey of remarkable grottos: some, like the Nottingham Limestone Caves, have been expanded over time by human habitation and digitally surveyed in high resolution. Some have been turned into temples or castles. Sometimes they are at the bottom of the world, beneath Mount Erebus.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 12:09 PM PST - 22 comments

A Darker Shade of Golden
As California goes, so goes the country, they used to say. Well, yikes. Golden State, an n+1 piece by Nikil Saval, presents a bleak picture of paralysis and conflicted interests that has rendered "The Bellwether State" all but inoperable. (via Arts & Letters Daily)
posted by Trochanter at 11:35 AM PST - 97 comments

"An assault on unions is an assault on democracy itself"
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says the National Guard is prepared to respond to unrest among state workers: "Gov. Scott Walker says the Wisconsin National Guard is prepared to respond if there is any unrest among state employees in the wake of his announcement that he wants to take away nearly all collective bargaining rights." NY Times offers more reporting on Walker's proposals here. Notably, Walker is reportedly refusing even to negotiate with the public employee unions. Though Walker's carefully worded announcement avoided any specific commitments about how guard troops might be used much beyond noting the Wisconsin Governor's concern that "some union leaders will try to incite their members," a look back at the history of the labor movement in the US reveals that this wouldn't be the first time in US history the National Guard has been called upon to respond to labor unrest, and that the results haven't always been pretty. [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman at 11:25 AM PST - 222 comments

Coach Walt
Wake Forest University's slogan for their baseball team in 2011 is 'What are you willing to sacrifice to help make this team better?' "Head coach Tom Walter's intent was to have his players thinking about sacrifice bunts, moving runners over, and giving up personal glory to help the Demon Deacons improve as a team. But what Walter chose to sacrifice is greater than simply hanging in on a curve ball and taking one for the team. Walter gave up a kidney." [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:23 AM PST - 6 comments

The Secret Life Of Syrian Lingerie
"The more religious an area is, the more risqué the underwear becomes. I think that Muslim women have less freedom on the outside so to compensate they have more freedom on the inside." Journalist Malu Halasa and designer Rana Salam have produced a tome on "the most outrageous lingerie in the world."
posted by artof.mulata at 10:43 AM PST - 30 comments

A beer and a smile at the old Horse Brass
If you've ever been grateful for the abundance of delicious beer that's popped up in the last few decades, raise a glass to Don Younger today at three. [more inside]
posted by twjordan at 10:19 AM PST - 28 comments

Gloria Muriel
Painter Gloria Muriel: Pop Surrealism on a Spiritual Quest. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 9:47 AM PST - 4 comments

Wahaca
The lemurs are hungry, a new food blog "in search of deliciousness from Malaysia to Mexico", features some great writing and photography, but more shockingly manages to obtain good Mexican food in the UK, something that has been previously hard to find or outright horrible, despite attempts to claim 'the Julia Child of Mexican Cuisine' as a Brit.
posted by Artw at 8:46 AM PST - 51 comments

whistling wonders
Geert Chatrou is a whistling maestro. Mozart's Queen of the Night | Czardas Monti. Other amazing whistling and whistlers inside. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 7:58 AM PST - 11 comments

"I use simple arithmetic and an exacto knife as my supplies along with lots of time."
"I am someone who has never taken an art class in my life...I didn't think I had an artistic bone in my body and never thought of myself as creative." Neat book art made with folds and an exacto knife from Isaac Salazar, who, according to his Flickr bio, is an accountant in New Mexico. [Via boingboing and Core77] [more inside]
posted by mediareport at 7:32 AM PST - 17 comments

Wake me in a thousand years, when computers can shed tears
The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, or The GOASTT to its friends, is a band consisting of musical and romantic partners Sean Lennon and Charlotte Kemp Muhl. Their music is melancholy and slightly off-kilter. While their stage act has tended toward layered electronic effects, they got back to their roots with their (nearly) full-length album, The Acoustic Sessions. The name of the band is taken from a story that Muhl wrote as a child. [more inside]
posted by adamrice at 7:18 AM PST - 11 comments

Tell me more about these Finns
Winston Burdett, one of the original Murrow's Boys, was a reporter for CBS Radio. He covered World War II, the invasion of Norway, the Axis retreat in North Africa (mp3), the invasion of Sicily (mp3), the invasion of Italy (mp3) and the capture of Rome (mp3). But from 1940 - 1942 Winston Burdett was also a spy for the Soviet Union. [more inside]
posted by IvoShandor at 3:37 AM PST - 4 comments

Shut them down if they shut you down.
Algeria has shut down internet and Facebook as protests mount.
posted by auralcoral at 2:40 AM PST - 132 comments

Rapscallions ought not to challenge gifted rappers
"What's Your English?" - A Youtube rhyme-off between the British Professor Elemental and the Canadian Baba Brinkman regarding the commonalities and differences between variations on the English language, courtesy of the Macmillan Dictionary. (Previous Brinkman, Previous Elemental)
posted by Katemonkey at 12:36 AM PST - 24 comments

Seriously, who hasn't done this?
That's Life -- The aftermath of a night out. (VERY NOT SAFE FOR WORK!!! or lunch)
posted by empath at 12:20 AM PST - 53 comments