November 12, 2010

Kovalchoke and the salary cap

100 million just doesn't get what it used to... Ilya Kovalchuk becomes the poster boy for irony in the NHL. [more inside]
posted by lumpenprole at 10:01 PM PST - 62 comments

James Frey’s Fiction Factory

James Frey (previously) wants to create the next Harry Potter or Twilight sensation. And he's hiring an army of anonymous starving authors to write it for him under somewhat unusual terms. Veteran publishing attorney Conrad Rippy said he's never seen anything like it:
It’s an agreement that says, “You’re going to write for me. I’m going to own it. I may or may not give you credit. If there is more than one book in the series, you are on the hook to write those too, for the exact same terms, but I don’t have to use you. In exchange for this, I’m going to pay you 40 percent of some amount you can’t verify — there’s no audit provision — and after the deduction of a whole bunch of expenses.”
posted by scalefree at 4:29 PM PST - 178 comments

Laugh your tuches off

Judd Apatow made a public service announcement for the American Jewish World Service that won't be shown on TV, and not just because it's five minutes long. AJWS is a quiet but powerful force for good in the world. The organization was among the first on the ground and continues to help rebuild in Haiti, post-tsunami India, and many other places around the world. This is its 25th year of philanthropy and humanitarian aid (and its president's 70th birthday).
posted by yiftach at 4:15 PM PST - 34 comments

For Science!

Ray Ardent, Science Ninja (FFN) [more inside]
posted by Alex404 at 3:57 PM PST - 2 comments

The Cliche Family in Televisionland

Meet the Cliche Family (very briefly nsfw) "...it was made around 1965 as an in-house joke at an ad agency" Via
posted by frobozz at 2:57 PM PST - 41 comments

The Wonderful World of Babel

Unlike many cinematic exports, the Disney canon of films distinguishes itself with an impressive dedication to dubbing. Through an in-house service called Disney Character Voices International, not just dialogue but songs, too, are skillfully re-recorded, echoing the voice acting, rhythm, and rhyme scheme of the original work to an uncanny degree (while still leaving plenty of room for lyrical reinvention). The breadth of the effort is surprising, as well -- everything from Arabic to Icelandic to Zulu gets its own dub, and their latest project, The Princess and the Frog, debuted in more than forty tongues. Luckily for polyglots everywhere, the exhaustiveness of Disney's translations is thoroughly documented online in multilanguage mixes and one-line comparisons, linguistic kaleidoscopes that cast new light on old standards. Highlights: "One Jump Ahead," "Prince Ali," and "A Whole New World" (Aladdin) - "Circle of Life," "Hakuna Matata," and "Luau!" (The Lion King) - "Under the Sea" and "Poor Unfortunate Souls" (The Little Mermaid) - "Belle" and "Be Our Guest" (Beauty and the Beast) - "Just Around the Riverbend" (Pocahontas) - "One Song" and "Heigh-Ho" (Snow White) - "Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo" (Cinderella) - Medley (Pinocchio) - "When She Loved Me" (Toy Story 2) - Intro (Monsters, Inc.)
posted by Rhaomi at 2:42 PM PST - 31 comments

Ninja Tune: 20 Years in the Technicolor Escape Pod

September 2010 marked 20 years of Ninja Tune, the independent label formed by the duo known as Coldcut. Starting with an album by the duo that they released under a different group name, the small UK label has since spiraled out to include three separate imprints (plus an artist-specific mini-label), with an extensive collection of singles, EPs and albums from an ever-growing list of artists. More history in words, music and video awaiting inside... [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:50 PM PST - 52 comments

Aaaaaaaaarrrrrrrgggggggggggghhhhhhhh!

Zombigotchi: a wee short for a new iphone game by Finkbom. Directed/Animated by Mikey Please's inner 12 year old and produced by James Botey. In Zombigotchi one can: pet, punish, feed, & play. Make your own.
posted by Fizz at 1:35 PM PST - 4 comments

truth hangs by a hair

A DNA test has proven that a man was executed for murder by the State of Texas on the basis of false forensic evidence. [more inside]
posted by hat at 1:34 PM PST - 99 comments

Leopardi's "Infinity"

"L'infinito": Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity. Infinity...
posted by Iridic at 1:24 PM PST - 8 comments

Skateistan, the film

Skateistan - To Live and Skate in Kabul (9:16) is a short documentary based on the work of the NGO Skateistan (previously), who provide lessons in skateboarding, environmental health, information technology, art and language to hundreds of boys and girls in Kabul, Afghanistan. (via) [more inside]
posted by Ufez Jones at 1:23 PM PST - 5 comments

So you bought an idea?

Performance art in the marketplace, courtesy of the Financial Times. The MOMA takes a stand.
posted by artof.mulata at 11:57 AM PST - 18 comments

Coal Without Carbon

Dirty Coal, Clean Future
To environmentalists, "clean coal" is an insulting oxymoron. But for now, the only way to meet the world's energy needs, and to arrest climate change before it produces irreversible cataclysm, is to use coal—dirty, sooty, toxic coal—in more-sustainable ways. The good news is that new technologies are making this possible. China is now the leader in this area, the Google and Intel of the energy world. If we are serious about global warming, America needs to work with China to build a greener future on a foundation of coal. Otherwise, the clean-energy revolution will leave us behind, with grave costs for the world's climate and our economy. (more here and responses here, here and here)
posted by kliuless at 11:33 AM PST - 49 comments

The Insanity Virus?

New research hints that schizophrenia and other mental illness may be caused by "endogenous retroviruses" stored in our DNA and activated by common infections such as CMV, toxoplamosis, or the flu
posted by T.D. Strange at 10:01 AM PST - 98 comments

Small digital cameras, the web and the crowd.

With video cameras becoming increasing smaller, cheaper and ubiquitous, questions are arising about the use of them on multiple levels, from governments monitoring their citizens, to private citizens keeping an eye on government and each other. [more inside]
posted by nomadicink at 9:18 AM PST - 83 comments

It's time to play the music!

There's a new Muppet Movie in the works. Jason Segel will be writing, starring, and co-directing the film, along with James Bobin (Of Ali G and Flight of the Conchords fame). Earlier this month, casting announcements began to trickle out: Zach Galifianakis, Jane Lynch, and Lady GaGa are all said to be making appearances in the film. Alan Arkin and Michael Cera have purportedly both been offered roles as well. The film is set to open next Christmas.
posted by schmod at 8:49 AM PST - 59 comments

That darn cat!

Scientists have finally discovered tyhe physics of how cats drink.
posted by Daddy-O at 8:36 AM PST - 51 comments

Winners Never Quit.

One of the greatest movie satires you almost never saw, Norman Lear's first stab at film making sat for two years before its 1971 release. Shot on location in Greenfield, Iowa, it featured a who's who cast of television comedy, [more inside]
posted by timsteil at 8:33 AM PST - 25 comments

Excitement grows in Burma as Aung San Suu Kyi's release nears.

Aung San Suu Kyi is expected to be freed tomorrow.
posted by xowie at 8:17 AM PST - 29 comments

Tragedy Transposed, The Sounds of HIV

There is no question that HIV is an ugly virus in terms of human health. Each year, it infects some 2.7 million additional people and leads to some two million deaths from AIDS. But a new album manages to locate some sonic beauty deep in its genome. Sounds of HIV (Azica Records) by composer Alexandra Pajak explores the patterns of the virus's nucleotides as well as the amino acids transcribed by HIV, playing through these biologic signatures in 17 tracks. [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 8:06 AM PST - 20 comments

R.I.P. Henryk Górecki

Composer Henryk Górecki, known for his choral and orchestral works in the "sacred minimalist" style, has died. He was best known for his Symphony #3, "Sorrowful Songs," (YT sample) premiered in the U.S. in 1994. Górecki's Symphony #4, scheduled to premier in 2010, was postponed because of the composer's extended illness, will not be completed.
posted by aught at 7:08 AM PST - 66 comments

Motor Booty

Detroit's Greatest Hits (That Should Have Been) Here we've compiled our very own Top 40 list of Detroit songs or albums that were overlooked or undervalued — which naturally includes, to a lesser extent, the overlooked or undervalued artists who created them. These are songs that not only give up the goose bumps, or teach us something that we didn't already know, but records that hook us and make us want to share them.
posted by louche mustachio at 6:58 AM PST - 29 comments

satire didn't bring down Hitler

In his unedited, fifty-minute interview with Rachel Maddow, Jon Stewart explains what's wrong with MSNBC, why you shouldn't say Bush is a war criminal even if it's "technically true," why the real political fight in the U.S. is not Republican vs. Democrat or left vs. right but corruption vs. non-corruption, and how the real point of the Rally to Restore Sanity (previously, previously) was to show that he has no actual influence, credibility, or power.
posted by gerryblog at 6:39 AM PST - 223 comments

F*** Lyndon Johnson and wash the dishes.

English sentences without overt grammatical subjects. SLTF (Single link text file). NSFW (not even remotely). Via.
posted by notsnot at 5:53 AM PST - 68 comments

Twitter Joke Trial

Back in May this year, British Twitter user Paul Chambers was found guilty of sending a 'menacing electronic communication'. The communication in question? A Twitter update written when stuck at an airport, saying the following: "Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You've got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!!" [more inside]
posted by Catseye at 5:01 AM PST - 74 comments

Wooorms innnn spaaaaace

Remember Worms? Well, Funky Pear (the guys who made playing golf in space fun) has another version of that, but the worms are replaced with guys in space suits, and the landscape is now a small planetary system. Use gravity to sling your rockets around planets, and build up the damage multiplier. Play Gravitee Wars. Warning: addictive. [more inside]
posted by Old'n'Busted at 5:00 AM PST - 20 comments

We Join Together to Battle Velvet

"I came to this beautiful hall in a soiled subway car, but I might as well have travelled in a grand carriage. As I walked down the street I drew sidelong glances. 'Who is this man,' they seemed to say. 'A man at home where-ever he travels. A man of refinement. A man of elegance. A man of corduroy.'" An address to the Corduroy Appreciation Club (previously) by MeFi's youngamerican Jesse Thorn.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 4:28 AM PST - 59 comments

Matt Taibbi strikes again

Matt Taibbi strikes again. Having gone after the investment banking industry, incidentally attaching a description to Goldman Sachs in ways their PR machine is still trying to peel off, his latest article in Rolling Stone illuminates the pervasive fraud at the heart of the foreclosure scandal. [more inside]
posted by pharm at 2:18 AM PST - 105 comments

We REALLY haven't had a Blue Man Group post in eight years?!

"Once you have established yourself as an icon in your field, it is important that you pay tribute to some of the great rock legends that came before you. This kind of gesture will create the illusion that you are still humble and serve as a preemptive strike against anyone who has noticed what a callous and delusional ass you have become."
posted by Rory Marinich at 1:03 AM PST - 21 comments