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December 30, 2010
"We tried to pick images that quickly became popular, generated hundreds of thousands of views, were interesting, and/or somehow changed the Internet as we knew it."
has become the standard among social news and media websites for sharing images. With the weight of 20 billion annual views, Imgur presents The Best Images of 2010.
(Anti-memesters beware, the list is full of 'em)
posted by Taft at 2:50 PM PST - 51 comments
For all the faults of the poorhouse
, the system it replaced was perceived to be even worse. In post-Revolution America, if you were poor, you could be "farmed out" at public auction to the lowest bidder. [more inside]
posted by Knappster at 11:59 AM PST - 8 comments
After a test flight nearly ended in disaster
at the start of the Civil War, Professor Thaddeus Lowe
recovered his balloon and headed back North. Recognizing the potential use of air vehicles in the war, he managed to get an invitation to the White House in order demonstrate the capabilities of balloons in the war effort. [more inside]
posted by nomadicink at 10:31 AM PST - 12 comments
Within that small and very specific sub-genre of musical Americana identifiable as the train imitation
, there is one amazing performance, from 1926, that set the standard: Pan-American Blues
. The man who recorded it did a fine and fanciful job of evoking the sounds of a fox chase
as well, and his rhythmically compelling solo rendition of John Henry
stands as testament to the potential for musical greatness achievable by one man and a humble harmonica. He was an African-American who was a founding member of the Grand Ole Opry, a musical institution that we rarely (as in, never
) today associate with black people, and his touching and tragic story, documented here
, is one that will be of interest to those concerned with the racial, economic and socio-cultural history of American popular music. He stands at one of its more unexpected intersections: his name is DeFord Bailey
. [more inside]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:31 AM PST - 15 comments
draws incredibly cute, funny, awesome cartoons. Cartoons about educated pigs, space rabbits, bad yetis, and rude flowers. You should be warned, they are very
Mungo Bean: Adventure Pig!
, Book 2
, Book 3 Part 1
, Part 2
, Yeti Party
Space Rabbits: In Space
, Planet Of
, Battle for the Planet Of
, Tea With A
Miscellaneous comics: The Indefatigable Miss Manners
, Working Class Elf
, Ghost Farm
She has a webcomic, Activities For Rainy Days [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 3:28 AM PST - 10 comments
"In the late '60's I worked for Bell Labs for a few years managing a data center and developing an ultra high speed information retrieval system. It was the days of beehive hair on the women and big mainframe computers. One day I took a camera to work and shot the pictures below."
posted by channey at 2:38 AM PST - 69 comments
"This is a subject of but small importance; and I know not whether it will interest any readers, but it has interested me."
Quick... what was Darwin's most popular book? If you answered The Origin of Species, you were wrong. It was his last book, published the year before he died, The Formation of Vegetable Mould Through the Action of Worms With Observation of Their Habits
[first presented 1 Nov. 1837
, as noted in the record of the Royal Geological Society]). Darwin noted when he was beginning his career that worms churned up soil, causing heavier objects to sink slowly in the soil. He noted that all soil had passed through the alimentary duct of worms. It started off a fashion of cultivating worms by gardeners that continues to the present day.
-We recently learned that we owe an element of our unique cerebral cortex, or pallium to our marine worm ancestors.
(In amphibians, the cerebrum includes archipallium, paleopallium and some of the basal nuclei. Reptiles first developed a neopallium, which continued to develop in the brains of more recent species to become the neocortex of mammals." [&, ultimately, you and you and we]) [more inside]
posted by infinite intimation at 1:20 AM PST - 11 comments