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April 28, 2012
Obama at the WHCD
A little grayer, a little wiser, a little funnier. Here's the full remarks of the president, including some "open mic" moments, and a short video about freedom vs socialism.
posted by TreeRooster at 8:39 PM PST - 135 comments

Practice Makes Perfect
"[It's] all the more staggering when you realize that more people were killed in the rehearsal for the landing at Utah beach than were killed in the actual landing at Utah beach." Operation Tiger, the disastrous secret rehearsal for D-Day, marks its 68th anniversary today.
posted by Spike at 8:28 PM PST - 22 comments

Ripped from the headlines, er, graphic novel covers.
Michigan superhero "BeeSting" arrested.
posted by tivalasvegas at 6:59 PM PST - 74 comments

The Art And Activism Of Jimmy Somerville
In June of 1984, the UK latched onto a single by three London mates which openly challenged Thatcherite-era attitudes toward homosexuals, and gave the ball of social change a huge push as the single climbed to #3 on the charts. The band was Bronski Beat, the song was Smalltown Boy, and as the song charted around the globe, the world was introduced to singer and gay rights activist Jimmy Somerville. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 6:57 PM PST - 60 comments

Can I be the little spoon?
Bon Iver is standing in the snow with his shirt off, just listening.[SLTumblr] [more inside]
posted by FirstMateKate at 6:41 PM PST - 40 comments

A Gull-Eating Octopus in Victoria, BC
An octopus eats a bird.
posted by jjray at 6:31 PM PST - 77 comments

Never Tell Me The Odds
Dr. Nick Bostrom puts the probability of an existential event wiping out humanity in this century at 10-20%.

Each time we make one of these new discoveries we are putting our hand into a big urn of balls and pulling up a new ball---so far we've pulled up white balls and grey balls, but maybe next time we will pull out a black ball, a discovery that spells disaster. At the moment we have no good way of putting the ball back into the urn if we don't like it. Once a discovery has been published there is no way of un-publishing it. (Dr Bostrom, previously on Metafilter.)
posted by COD at 5:39 PM PST - 79 comments

"The safest place in Beijing."
The blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng has fled home imprisonment and sought refuge, according to Chinese dissidents, at the US Embassy in Beijing. Chen gained fame for organizing opposition to forced abortions under China's one-child policy. [more inside]
posted by BobbyVan at 2:24 PM PST - 35 comments

personal computing challenging the recording business
"Dingus is dedicated to the search [for new music on Bandcamp]. It's here, on this humble blog that we shed light on bedroom artists in their most defining moments. If you want what's popular today, Dingus is not the blog for you. But, if you want what's fringe, pure and passionate then you've somehow landed on the right URL." [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:39 PM PST - 18 comments

“They pay me absurd amounts of money,” he observes, “For something that I would do for free.”.
A Stephen King interview: by Neil Gaiman "I interviewed Stephen King for the UK Sunday Times Magazine. The interview appeared a few weeks ago. The Times keeps its site paywalled, so I thought I'd post the original version of the interview here. (This is the raw copy, and it's somewhat longer than the interview as published.) I don't do much journalism any more, and this was mostly an excuse to drive across Florida back in February and spend a day with some very nice people I do not get to see enough. I hope you enjoy it."
posted by Fizz at 12:23 PM PST - 51 comments

"A strict academic caste system."
"Sixteen years ago, Patricia (P.J.) Johnston of Des Moines made the front page of this paper for collecting her diploma from Drake University at just 19. “I think I’m probably meant to be an academic,” Johnston was quoted as saying. And she has been, getting a master’s in one institution, going to seminary at another, doing field research in India in her area of interest — Indian Catholicism — and currently working toward a Ph.D in religious studies at the University of Iowa....As it is, she sleeps on her office floor on the days she has to be in Iowa City, riding the Greyhound bus in from Des Moines."
[more inside]
posted by edheil at 11:29 AM PST - 116 comments

"You also said the skunk wouldn’t spray me either!"
"Did you put any thought into this?" - Using their bare hands, two guys carefully move a swarming colony of placid honey bees. [more inside]
posted by quin at 11:06 AM PST - 50 comments

Off The Rails
"Let's just say it. The Republicans are the problem." [more inside]
posted by cashman at 11:05 AM PST - 120 comments

grilled cheesus!
Did you know April is Grilled Cheese Month? You still have time to celebrate! (via Tastespotting) [more inside]
posted by flex at 9:59 AM PST - 48 comments

A real world distopian sports event
Not content with displacing the poor, menacing photographers and blocking ambulances the london olympics now wants ground-to-air missiles, presumably to shoot down rogue skywriters who might misuse it's brand.
posted by Artw at 9:37 AM PST - 70 comments

Foxes at Play
Across America, people on golf courses have noticed the trend of foxes stealing golf balls. More, more, and more.

The phenomenon has now spread to France, where foxes have been caught snatching boules de pétanque.
posted by gimonca at 7:58 AM PST - 58 comments

The lady doth protest too much, methinks
Is Some Homophobia Self-Phobia? Many have suspected but now the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology has published empirical research on the subject. In the study, 20% of self-identified "highly-straight" participants demonstrated some level of same-sex attraction in reaction time tests. These individuals were significantly more likely than any other group of participants to favor anti-gay policies. Also in NYTimes.
posted by dave99 at 5:05 AM PST - 100 comments

Deus Ex Now
"Jolts to the brain boosts memory!" Via deep brain stimulation technique, patients in a UCLA study (Full PDF)were able to significantly improve their ability to remember and find their way through a virtual environment. Although the study was small, it offers tantalizing clues toward potential treatments of disease such as Alzheimer's and raises the specter of artificial neuro-enhancements in the future. [more inside]
posted by Pantalaimon at 4:24 AM PST - 17 comments

Space Invader
In Bed With Invader One night in Paris with street artist Invader (SLYT)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:01 AM PST - 17 comments

The Strangest Man
The trend of mathematics and physics towards unification provides the physicist with a powerful new method of research into the foundations of his subject, a method which has not yet been applied successfully, but which I feel confident will prove its value in the future. The method is to begin by choosing that branch of mathematics which one thinks will form the basis of the new theory. One should be influenced very much in this choice by considerations of mathematical beauty. [1939] [more inside]
posted by smcg at 2:51 AM PST - 8 comments

Hollywood doesn’t trust women
Name all the female movie directors you can in one minute, right now. No Google. I’ll wait. This movie gave me cooties why there are no female directors.
posted by patrick54 at 1:42 AM PST - 91 comments

full-blast living
The Creative Personality: Ten paradoxical traits of the creative personality By Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (via)
posted by infini at 12:47 AM PST - 35 comments