How Did Ancient Greek Music Sound?
The music of ancient Greece, unheard for thousands of years, is being brought back to life by Armand D'Angour, a musician and tutor in classics at Oxford University. He describes what his research is discovering.
Song Of The Sirens [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:19 PM Dec 19 2013 - 9 comments [54 favorites]
When is "life hacking" simply what we used to call selfishness? Jen Dziura takes on
blogger James Altucher's recent Quora piece, How to Break All the Rules and Get Everything You Want
posted by cairdeas at 1:23 PM Dec 19 2013 - 95 comments [43 favorites]
Slate.com reports on the story of the woman behind Ronald Reagan's "welfare queen in a Cadillac" story:
"When I set out in search of Linda Taylor, I hoped to find the real story of the woman who played such an outsize role in American politics—who she was, where she came from, and what her life was like before and after she became the national symbol of unearned prosperity. What I found was a woman who destroyed lives, someone far more depraved than even Ronald Reagan could have imagined. In the 1970s alone, Taylor was investigated for homicide, kidnapping, and baby trafficking. The detective who tried desperately to put her away believes she’s responsible for one of Chicago’s most legendary crimes, one that remains unsolved to this day. Welfare fraud was likely the least of the welfare queen’s offenses... In the aftermath of that Tribune article—and the one published two weeks later that gave Taylor her famous nickname—Sherwin and his partner were detailed to the investigative unit of the state Senate’s Legislative Advisory Committee on Public Aid. The detective had been looking into a wide range of Taylor’s crimes, but now a police matter had become a political one. The welfare fraud, it seemed, was all that mattered. For the Chicago burglary detective, Linda Taylor was never really the welfare queen. He believed she was a kidnapper and a baby seller. Maybe something worse."
posted by bookman117 at 12:24 AM Dec 19 2013 - 48 comments [45 favorites (40 in the past 24 hours)]
Video Game Foliage.
"Making spaces for games is a strange and interesting art. Not being bound by physical limitations makes it possible to create impossible structures, but being bound by the technical limitations of modern computer graphics makes it difficult to create accurate simulacra of even simple objects. So video games cheat, using approximations to create the desired aesthetic result.
Plant approximations are especially hard, since organic structures tend to be difficult to describe in terms that graphics cards understand. This creates an interesting design constraint.
How do you create representations of plants given the limitations of realtime rendering?
I plan to use this blog to show a bunch of games that choose different answers to this question. I hope you’ll join me in looking into the weird world of video game foliage." [more inside]
posted by kmz at 10:07 AM Dec 19 2013 - 29 comments [32 favorites]
"You live now, Adam Ant
, as you have lived many times throughout history, fighting evil wherever you may find it!"
posted by scody at 12:11 PM Dec 19 2013 - 28 comments [24 favorites]
The attack can extract full 4096-bit RSA decryption keys from laptop computers ... within an hour ... using either a plain mobile phone placed next to the computer, or a more sensitive microphone placed 4 meters away. RSA Key Extraction via Low-Bandwidth Acoustic Cryptanalysis [more inside]
posted by flabdablet at 6:56 PM Dec 19 2013 - 33 comments [24 favorites]
The creators of Parks and Recreation often express their fandoms through their Nerd Spirit Animal, Ben Wyatt
. After dropping references to Catan
, baseball sabrmetrics
to name but a few, Ben's geeky awesomeness reached a new height in a recent episode, in a scene where he shows off his new board game, the Cones of Dunshire
. (Poorer quality version for non-USians
) The pretend game was created specifically for the scene by Mayfair Games, makers of Settlers of Catan.
Hot on its tail, Vulture presents An Oral History of the Cones of Dunshire scene
(via Vulture's micro-oral histories week
, recently previously
posted by dry white toast at 11:02 AM Dec 19 2013 - 99 comments [21 favorites]
From the testimony, PDF
of Pam Dixon (World Privacy Forum
) before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation:
What do a retired librarian in Wisconsin in the early stages of Alzheimer's, a police officer, and a mother in Texas have in common? The answer is that all were victims of consumer data brokers. [more inside]
posted by rjs at 10:53 AM Dec 19 2013 - 10 comments [20 favorites]
In real (or at least our preferred) life, we do have other, better things to do.
We have books to read, children to raise, friends to meet, loved ones to care for, amusements to enjoy, drinks to drink, walks to take, webs to surf, couches to lie on, games to play, movies to see, protests to make, movements to build, marches to march, and more. Most days, we don’t have time to do any of that. We’re working way too many hours for too little pay, and in the remaining few hours (minutes) we have, after the kids are asleep, the dishes are washed, and the laundry is done, we have to haggle with insurance companies about doctor’s bills, deal with school officials needing forms signed, and more.
posted by latkes at 8:26 PM Dec 18 2013 - 129 comments [35 favorites (19 in the past 24 hours)]
Does the world really need another “fantasy role- playing game”? Why take yet another try at improving those old-school adventure rules? Good questions. People who run such games and write about them online tend to kit-build their own rules. On these grounds I decided to present my own game notes in modular form, that people could choose from and use.
52 Pages 1.0
) by Roger the GS
posted by griphus at 12:10 PM Dec 19 2013 - 20 comments [19 favorites]
International Children's Digital Library
Treasure trove of children's books that can be read online in many languages from Amharic to Vietnamese.
posted by Listener at 10:21 PM Dec 18 2013 - 5 comments [23 favorites (17 in the past 24 hours)]
The Endgame for Democracy:
A short essay by Bill Moyers. [SLYT]
posted by phaedon at 5:56 PM Dec 19 2013 - 22 comments [14 favorites]
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