Join 3,418 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)

April 18, 2008
But this is no ordinary house...
Mole Man to pay £300,000 for burrowing under home. A retired engineer nicknamed “Mole Man”, because of his fondness for burrowing tunnels under his home (video), has been ordered to pay almost £300,000 to the local council (he lives in London) after his hobby nearly caused his house to collapse (article with a few photos). William Lyttle, 77, spent 40 years excavating a maze of tunnels beneath his 20-room Victorian property in Hackney, East London, before the council intervened. "I often used to joke that I expect him to come tunnelling up through the kitchen floor," said Marc Beishon, who lives a few yards from William Lyttle's house, in 2006, when the Mole Man was first ordered to stop. [more inside]
posted by KokuRyu at 10:33 PM PST - 31 comments

Who really invented the telephone?
Who really invented the telephone? Was it this guy?, or did he just win a foot race to the patent office with this guy or was it really... [more inside]
posted by Rafaelloello at 10:06 PM PST - 5 comments

Harvey Dent, eat your heart out.
"Baby Lali with two faces, two noses, two pairs of lips and two pairs of eyes was born on March 11 in a northern Indian village, where she is doing well and is being worshipped as the reincarnation of a Hindu goddess, her father said Tuesday."
posted by auralcoral at 7:25 PM PST - 54 comments

2008 Pulitzer Prizes
The 2008 Pulitzer Prize winners were recently announced. Some winners worth noting include the article in the Washington Post about violin virtuoso Joshua Bell busking in the Washington D.C. Metro station, which won the award for Feature Writing. The Washington Post also won the International Reporting award for a disturbing series about modern day mercenaries. This article about Blackwater operating beyond the reach of any law was part of the series. The Washington Post Pulitzer page has more information on their winners and finalists. [more inside]
posted by McGuillicuddy at 6:19 PM PST - 15 comments

Suspending Life
Suspending Life. "If almost every species on Earth was killed some 250 million years ago, how did our ancient ancestors survive and evolve into us?"
posted by homunculus at 6:10 PM PST - 31 comments

Overblown, conceptually thin, with nothing to say
Rick Poynor asks - isn't it time we demanded more from design conferences?
posted by divabat at 4:38 PM PST - 6 comments

May 1968
An interactive audiovisual tour [flash, audio] of the student protests in Paris in May 1968. Part of a larger look at 1968. [Previously]
posted by djgh at 4:37 PM PST - 4 comments

Impermafrost
"We badly underestimated the degree of damages and the risks of climate change," said Lord Stern in a speech in London yesterday. "All of the links in the chain are on average worse than we thought (pdf) a couple of years ago." [more inside]
posted by [expletive deleted] at 4:02 PM PST - 56 comments

Animal Pharm
Animal Pharm
posted by joe defroster at 3:50 PM PST - 15 comments

You Have 40 Seconds......
Flash Friday Doeo Simple, amusing, addictive.
posted by mikoroshi at 2:56 PM PST - 15 comments

Tintin Parodies, in English, French and Spanish
Tintin in Thailand: pdf
Breaking Free
The Flute of the Wendigo
[more inside]
posted by harhailla.harhaluuossa at 2:39 PM PST - 5 comments

Apple cloner or scammer?
Recently, Psystar Corporation announced the Open Mac, now renamed "Open Computer," a $399.99 Mac clone. Besides violating Apple's EULA, and the license for the emulator that allows Leopard to run on commodity hardware, apparently the company itself seems a bit... shady. Metafilter's own Woz, on the other hand, says he might get one.
posted by MythMaker at 2:21 PM PST - 42 comments

BBC Sound Index
BBC Sound Index -- an excellent way to confirm your worst fears about the music Internet users are listening to.
posted by feelinglistless at 2:13 PM PST - 27 comments

Horton Sees A Hooter
My Beautiful Mommy is a children's book for children whose mothers suddenly come home from the doctor with giant hooters, or significant amounts of fat suddenly missing. A bold new market in childrens publishing awaits.
posted by jonson at 9:17 AM PST - 67 comments

# The thunder of his own guns filled him with stupid wonder.
Stephen King has described The Dark Tower as his "Jupiter." The epic series, inspired in part by Robert Browning's poem, "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came", has spanned 22 years, 7 books and nearly 4000 pages. The first book in the series, The Gunslinger, begins with a simple, memorable declaration, "The Man in Black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed." [more inside]
posted by kbanas at 8:56 AM PST - 160 comments

Learning Rabbit is in some ways like human cultural studies, but of course the subject individuals have much longer ears.
Since 1999, The Language of Lagomorphs has been the foremost resource on the web for information about the body language of domestic rabbits. "It's been pretty amazing to see how many people, even those who live with rabbits, are outright shocked at just how communicative they really are once you learn to notice. The contrast between this reality and the popular misconception that rabbits 'just sit there' could not be greater." [more inside]
posted by clavicle at 8:45 AM PST - 27 comments

Uncomplimentary about complementary.
A leaflet on alternative medicine produced by the Prince's Foundation for Integrated Health has been condemned by Britain's first Professor of Complementary Medicine. [more inside]
posted by Phanx at 8:22 AM PST - 29 comments

What’s for Dinner? The Pollster Wants to Know
What’s for Dinner? The Pollster Wants to Know
"If there’s butter and white wine in your refrigerator and Fig Newtons in the cookie jar, you’re likely to vote for Hillary Clinton. Prefer olive oil, Bear Naked granola and a latte to go? You probably like Barack Obama, too. And if you’re leaning toward John McCain, it’s all about kicking back with a bourbon and a stuffed crust pizza while you watch the Democrats fight it out next week in Pennsylvania." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 8:10 AM PST - 74 comments

The Comet Hunters
The Story of a Comet Hunter (see also his web page which contains a link to the story of his discover of Comet Seki-Lines in 1962). Visual comet hunting has a long and intriguing history. Today visual hunters are adapting their ways to make visual discoveries in an age of automated searches. The amateur can still win. Now, ANYONE can discover a comet(?) Or perhaps 1000. A Guide for SOHO Comet Hunters. More SOHO and Sungrazing Comet Links. [Previously]
posted by spock at 7:10 AM PST - 2 comments

Jes' some old tunes, is all...
For your weekend aural edification, courtesy of Internet Archive, a sampling of Old-Time and country blues gems: Buell Kazee's The Dying Soldier (1928), B.F. Shelton's Pretty Polly (1927), Geeshie Wiley's Last Kind Words (1930), Dock Boggs' Danville Girl, Kelly Harrel's Rovin' Gambler (1925), Clarence Ashley's My Sweet Farm Girl (1931), Charlie Poole's Don't Let Your Deal Go Down Blues (1925) and the Memphis Jug Band's A Black Woman is Like a Black Snake (1928).
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:10 AM PST - 13 comments

Marshall Poe: professional historian with some cool projects
New Books In History. Historian Marshall Poe talks with other historians about their newly published books. [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 7:09 AM PST - 5 comments

Open Champion
"Open Source Living is a community-driven dynamic archive of Open Source software spanning all major platforms."
posted by Abiezer at 7:03 AM PST - 7 comments

I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
From the Infocom treasure trove: Milliway's, the unreleased sequel to Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
posted by matthewr at 6:18 AM PST - 43 comments

"Sid James is Silenus... Barbara Windsor is Aphrodite. Hattie Jacques is Athena."
The Carry On films have been a much-loved part of British life for the last 50 years, and they may even be making a new one. This give a quick feel of what you might of missed (slightly NSFW) And though it does have its knockers, one person liked them so much he made a religion out of them, literally.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 5:32 AM PST - 31 comments

Gasoline for that fire?
April 18, 1980: Rhodesia is renamed Zimbabwe after it is granted black majority rule. [more inside]
posted by allkindsoftime at 5:23 AM PST - 60 comments

202 Lines About 101 Computers
101 Great Mostly Pretty Good and Hopefully Correctly Attributed Quotes About Computers and Programming. But Wait There's More! Yep, 101 More Quotes plus an extra extra added bonus for a limited time, the second list as originally published in Spanish, because it's fun to read Isaac Asimov and Emo Philips in another language, and Lou Dobbs will get so pissed off. [more inside]
posted by wendell at 3:47 AM PST - 18 comments

I bring to your window beautiful songs.
The Serenader. Roberto’s long moon-shadow stretches absurdly across the walls of the house as he plucks prettily at his guitar while his drunk client swaggers like a cat... Like many men in San Cristóbal, Roberto holds two jobs. At night he plays and sings the love songs that men use to woo women; in the day he teaches guitar to young men who may someday be his competition. Of the two jobs, serenading is far more lucrative.
posted by amyms at 2:49 AM PST - 3 comments