April 2, 2011

interspecies friendships

A girl and her dog play a board game together | a man and the goose who loves him | a girl and her lamb named Bee | a sheep and dog play tag |rabbit and cat (the aww at :58) | Snaggle Puss and baby bunny | duckling feeds carp. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 10:49 PM PST - 35 comments

Stetsons are cool!

The BBC has released the trailer for the new season of Doctor Who and revealed the title of Neil Gaiman's episode. .
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:09 PM PST - 103 comments

Muzzle the Defense

The chances that a powerful person will make an error are much greater than those of a weak person. Scott Horton translates Benjamin Constant, references Robespierre, and offers insight on modern efforts to preclude meaningful trials in federal court. [more inside]
posted by fartknocker at 8:54 PM PST - 20 comments

Baez/Yudkowsky

John Baez (mathematical physicist and master popularizer, former operator of This Week's Finds in Mathematical Physics, current promoter of the idea that physicists should start pitching in on saving the world) interviews Eliezer Yudkowsky (singularitarian, author of "Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality," promoter of the idea that human life faces a near-term existential threat from unfriendly artificial intelligence, and that people can live better lives by evading their cognitive biases) about the future, academia, rationality, altruism, expected utility, self-improvement by humans and machines, and the relative merit of battling climate change and developing friendly AIs that will forstall our otherwise inevitable doom. Part I. Part II. Part III. [more inside]
posted by escabeche at 8:43 PM PST - 47 comments

Afghanis riot over Terry Jones' Koran-burning kill 20

A 2nd day of riots in Afghanistan over Rev. Terry Jones's trial and execution-by-burning of a Quran leaves a total death total of 20, with at least 80 injuries, including 7 UN aid workers. Thousands participated in the riots across the country. "I don't think we should be blaming any Afghan. We should be blaming the person who produced the news — the one who burned the Quran," stated the top U.N. envoy in Afghanistan, Staffan de Mistura. Others defend Jones's right to free speech. (previously)
posted by shivohum at 8:35 PM PST - 229 comments

Revolutionology

Revolutionology is the blog of a sociologist in Libya.
posted by serazin at 7:32 PM PST - 5 comments

Nifty Audio Projects

Nifty audio projects from Paris Smaragdis, including fascinating method of extracting individual audio samples (say a guitar solo) from a mix by humming the part. [6.4 mb mp4] [via AskMe]
posted by odinsdream at 6:43 PM PST - 12 comments

Laundering Drug Money

At the height of the 2008 banking crisis, Antonio Maria Costa, then head of the United Nations office on drugs and crime, said he had evidence to suggest the proceeds from drugs and crime were "the only liquid investment capital" available to banks on the brink of collapse. "Inter-bank loans were funded by money that originated from the drugs trade," he said. "There were signs that some banks were rescued that way." How a big US bank laundered billions from Mexico's murderous drug gangs [more inside]
posted by The Emperor of Ice Cream at 5:12 PM PST - 30 comments

Deadlift

"I happen to believe that the deadlift is a most beneficial exercise for men and women and athletes of both sexes of all ages ... The deadlift is not only a useful exercise to help build greater hip, leg, and back strength, it’s a movement everyone needs to know how to do properly because it will be done in some form or fashion countless times in a lifetime." Legendary strength coach Bill Starr writes about the deadlift, just as 27-year-old Benedikt Magnusson sets a new world record with a lift of 1015 pounds.
posted by Anatoly Pisarenko at 4:32 PM PST - 99 comments

Command decision

How Slavery Really Ended in America On May 23, 1861, little more than a month into the Civil War, three young black men rowed across the James River in Virginia and claimed asylum in a Union-held citadel.... [T]the laws of the United States were clear: all fugitives must be returned to their masters. The founding fathers enshrined this in the Constitution; Congress reinforced it in 1850 with the Fugitive Slave Act; and it was still the law of the land — including, as far as the federal government was concerned, within the so-called Confederate states. The war had done nothing to change it. Most important, noninterference with slavery was the very cornerstone of the Union’s war policy. President Abraham Lincoln had begun his inaugural address by making this clear, pointedly and repeatedly. “I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the states where it exists,” the president said. “I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so.” [more inside]
posted by caddis at 2:23 PM PST - 101 comments

A cat may look at a king.

English proverbs and their origins. [more inside]
posted by Brian B. at 11:49 AM PST - 22 comments

Urban art fun

I like urban art fun with a sense of humor: OakOak is a french artist who likes to play with urban elements.
posted by Waslijn at 11:37 AM PST - 9 comments

Gianmarco Magnani illustration: Silence Television

Gianmarco Magnani draws girls, guitars and motorcycles.
posted by Tom-B at 10:49 AM PST - 25 comments

A Black Scholar Gone

Manning Marrable is dead. Author of a controversial biography of Malcolm X, he was a Marxist professor who wrote regular columns such as this one. Unfortunately, manningmarable.net, a collection of his columns, is no longer up, but he was an influential scholar (Mandatory Wikipedia Link). [more inside]
posted by kozad at 9:32 AM PST - 23 comments

Cantata 147

Melodic wooden sculpture plays Bach in the forest. [3m5s] (Final 25 seconds are advertising and can be skipped.)
posted by hippybear at 8:48 AM PST - 38 comments

Sbarro is out of dough

With $365 million in debt, mall food court Italian restaurant chain Sbarro has filed for Chapter 11. With nearly 1,000 restaurants in 30 countries, this could impact lovers of congealed pizza everywhere. Let's take a look back at some happier moments in the chain's lifespan.
posted by porn in the woods at 6:05 AM PST - 261 comments

If I had known then what I know now, the Goldstone Report would have been a different document.

Richard Goldstone reconsiders his report on the Gaza war of 2008-2009. [more inside]
posted by beisny at 3:44 AM PST - 252 comments

Simon Tookome, artist and whipper

"I'm proud of being recognized as an artist, but I really want to be known as someone with a special talent for the whip." Simon Tookoome, who passed away last year, was justly celebrated as an artist in his lifetime. You can view 39 of his pieces in The Canadian Art Database (including my favorite of his, the sculpture Shaman Wolf). But whipping was closer to his heart, and in his prime may have been the world's greatest whipper. Sadly, I could find no video of him from before 2000 on the internet, but here he is at 72. You can read a description of him at his peak in this condescending Time article about the 1972 Arctic Winter Games. And you can watch a few more Simon Tookoome videos here.
posted by Kattullus at 12:17 AM PST - 10 comments

I blue myself

It's like Evolution of Dance—a collection of kicky songs, just substitute dancing for the tribal drumming of a self-crafted PVC pipe instrument. 19 songs in 8 minutes. [more inside]
posted by Taft at 12:01 AM PST - 12 comments