May 27

Roll for mutations

old School Science Fiction RPGs: Traveller, Metamorphosis Alpha, Gamma World.
posted by Artw at 11:53 AM - 99 comments

"There's a hand stuffed up inside of meee..."

VentriloChoir performs "Yesterday" on Hungarian TV show. And the story of how they got there. [more inside]
posted by Atom Eyes at 10:16 AM - 12 comments

They're ours! No, they're not! Yes, they are!

To commemorate Argentina's Bicentenary Celebrations 2 days ago, Foreign Minister Jorge Taiana appeals to the British Government to respect the "spirit of the Argentinian people" and reopen sovereignty discussions concerning the Falkland Islands, a British territory since 1833. Despite a recent increase in tension due to British companies beginning to drill to oil in the Islands, the new British Goverment has already rejected talks resuming. [more inside]
posted by jontyjago at 10:03 AM - 13 comments

The Three Christs of Ypsilanti

In the late 1950s, psychologist Milton Rokeach was gripped by an eccentric plan. He gathered three psychiatric patients, each with the delusion that they were Jesus Christ, to live together for two years in Ypsilanti State Hospital to see if their beliefs would change. Vaughan Bell tells the story of one of the weirdest experiments in the history of psychology. (via)
posted by The Mouthchew at 10:03 AM - 57 comments

Oil Spill roundup.

'Top Kill' seems to have worked, Apparently stopping the flow of oil -- now officially estimated by the government to have been about 12,000-19,000 barrels/day, with 75% most of the volume being gas ABC News Dives below the surface to get a look at plumes of 'dispersed' oil: (spoiler alert: not pretty). And a BP exec takes the 5th, refusing to testify before a federal panel.
posted by delmoi at 9:42 AM - 235 comments

Hello Jed

30 objects, 40 audio and videocassettes, and 1,425 photographs, among them a Polaroid snapshot of Terry Fox’s artificial leg - Douglas Coupland submits his personal objects to the University of British Columbia. [more inside]
posted by mippy at 9:07 AM - 18 comments

'I wanted to preserve the farmyard connotations.'

On translating Roberto Bolaño's sex scenes.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:19 AM - 23 comments

"Bio Force Ape" Meets "Bean Ball Benny"

Sure, you've played Final Fantasy VII, but what about Final Fantasy Extreme? You've played EarthBound, but what about Earth Bound (two words). You know all about Dragon Quest VIII, but are you familiar with Dragon Quest: Young Yangus and the Mystery Dungeon? There's a whole world of forgotten, canceled games out there just waiting to be discovered. Let 1UP's Jeremy Parish and Frank Cifaldi be your guides in an exploration of The Best Games That Never Were. (Previously)
posted by Servo5678 at 8:12 AM - 30 comments

Joshua Glenn's generational periodization scheme

Joshua Glenn and anti-middlebrow blog Hilobrow present their generational periodization scheme: from the Prometheans born in 1844-53 and the technologically transformative Plutonians born in 1854-63, to the hiply earnest Revivalists (those who were teenagers in the 90s) and the Throwbacks (my generation, and an article that horrifyingly includes pictures of tweens and the Mickey Mouse Club). [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 6:17 AM - 67 comments

The beauty of the double dovetail

The dovetail joint was once the king of joints. Mechanically simple and reliable, it's fantastically strong, but it's not simple to get right by hand. Nowadays, the joint has largely vanished due to the rise of flat pack furniture's reliance on screws and glues, but it still exists in high end work and in the hands of hobbyists. Most dovetails are now done using a jig and router to reproduce predefined angles, but every now and again you find someone who goes off and creates something truly beautiful. Like this box with hand cut double dovetails.
posted by sodium lights the horizon at 5:11 AM - 82 comments

I've already thought of that joke

Type one-handed on a keyboard virtually "folded up" to be half the size? Pff. With zero training? Double pff. Except it totally works.
posted by DU at 4:54 AM - 88 comments

you're dancing to the news

You're listening grooving to ABC News in Australia, or 7 News, or Ten. And now, over to the UK for the BBC or Sky News. Don't listen to the others! They are false prophets!
posted by divabat at 3:21 AM - 15 comments

World in Motion

Pop World Cup 2010! [more inside]
posted by Dim Siawns at 3:08 AM - 3 comments

Norway's modern prisons

Norway's penal system has gathered some attention recently, as the new Halden prison just opened. The $217 million facility will house 252 prisoners, some long-term and some short. The new prison is notable for, among other things, use of armoured glass instead of bars on windows, natural lighting and single-inmate cells with private showers, TVs and access to a gym and a sound studio. There was also an art budget, and Norwegian street artist Dolk was commisioned to decorate some of the walls. The Norwegian penal system is similar to the other Scandinavian countries', with no death penalty, and a "life" sentence of 21 years. In Norway there are no privately run incarceration facilities, and the opening of the rather plush-seeming Halden prison spurred some discussion, but garnered no big controversy. [more inside]
posted by Harald74 at 2:38 AM - 111 comments

Dochira made ikaremasu ka?

Taxi top lights, called andon (行灯) in Japanese after the Edo-era wood & paper lanterns, come in a variety of shapes and colors. Although originally used in the mid-1950s to discourage robberies, andon are now used as company logos or to advertise.
posted by armage at 12:40 AM - 6 comments

May 26

An eye the size of a grapefruit, keeping an eye on me...

...and there was just rope everywhere--it went around the whales mouth, around the whale's head, across her eye, over her back wrapped around the pectoral fins, all the way down to its tail. I thought there was no hope, there was no chance, we're looking at a dead whale, the whale just doesn't know it yet--but I knew that I had to try. ...It was a very surreal moment looking down and seeing the 20 crab traps and buoys just disappear into the abyss... And just like that, the whale was gone. ...I'm spinning around, where'd she go, where'd she go ? ...Now here's where the story takes a pretty startling turn. ...Next thing I know there's this fifty ton whale coming right at me...
From about 4:00 to 14:30 in nearly 23 minutes of the segment, Animal Blessings--in mp3 here, all 20 megs of it. Or you can try the podcast at RadioLab: Animal Minds. Either way, you are in for a most truly awesome anecdote. And listen to the whole program to have some back and forth science dropped on you in regards to what we think we know about what and how animals think. [more inside]
posted by y2karl at 9:10 PM - 69 comments

You May See Them At Pixar Some Day

Vancouver Film School students create a portfolio project or demo reel for graduation designed to demonstrate their creative and technical abilities to potential employers and collaborators. Among the many great samples, I dig Rain Crowds in the 3D animation category, Dance! in classic animation, and Border in digital character animation. But there are literally hundreds to choose from, so please enjoy.
posted by netbros at 4:43 PM - 7 comments

In the Land of The Not so Free

Robert King spent decades battling for his release from the 'hell-hole' of America's notorious Angola Prison. Now free, he's still crusading for its inmates.
The late Anita Roddick was the powerhouse behind the making of the Documentary In Land of the Free.
Herman Wallace, Albert Woodfox, and Robert King were charged with murders they did not commit and encarcerated in solitary confinement, for nearly 37 years. Robert was freed in 2001, but Herman and Albert remain behind bars.
Angola not only has solitary confinement it has the prison within solitary confinement – The Hole [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 3:32 PM - 33 comments

Azawad

Borne in the succession of rebellions, Tichumaren has redefined the image of the Tuareg. Popularized on the international stage in 2001 via the success of Tinariwen, the "desert blues" has changed the conception – from the exotic blue men of the desert to the Kashniklov/guitar strumming desert rebels. [more inside]
posted by iamck at 2:46 PM - 14 comments

Hey, dude, can I trade my wampum for some PBR?

The latest trend in hipster culture is the appropriation of Native American culture, here seen at San Francisco's recent Bay-to-Breakers race. The participants might ask, but why can't I wear a hipster headdress? Threadbared has a round-up of bloggers' concerns about the appropriation of Native American culture.
posted by desjardins at 2:39 PM - 241 comments

"...and Wakefield was contracted to conduct scientific research for him."

The Facts In The Case Of Dr. Andrew Wakefield. A fifteen page comic about the MMR vaccination controversy. Previously.
posted by ignignokt at 1:35 PM - 87 comments

Kids told him the darndest things

He was abandoned on a door step in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan in 1912. He hosted House Party and People are Funny on radio and TV. A segment became the hugely popular Kids Say the Darndest Things. He co-hosted the opening of Disneyland (with Ronald Reagan). His daughter Diane killed herself by jumping from a window; he blamed LSD and became an outspoken anti-drug crusader. Art Linkletter has died at the age of 97.
posted by evilcolonel at 1:25 PM - 59 comments

Intellectual Ventures

Intellectual Ventures is an invention factory founded by Nathan Myhrvold, who previously founded Microsoft Research and was MS's CTO. Bill Gates raves about IV, Malcolm Gladwell wrote an article about the IV invention process in The New Yorker, Newsweek profiled Nathan’s company in April 2010, and this week there was an hour-long TV interview with Myhrvold on Charlie Rose. Take a 6-min video tour of the laboratory.
posted by stbalbach at 12:19 PM - 43 comments

Wie tanzt man denn eigentlich in einer Mediathek?

Es gibt viele Quellen überall im Internet, wo man Deutsch hören und sehen kann. There are countless German TV channels, great podcasts, and news outlets online. Here are some of the best. Not fluent? Es geht weiter! [more inside]
posted by vkxmai at 12:07 PM - 45 comments

You're Wrong! No, You're Wrong!

5 Lesser Known (Completely Ridiculous) American Civil Wars, via Cracked. [more inside]
posted by Miko at 12:00 PM - 45 comments

free parking

The last Hummer has rolled off the line in Shreveport, Louisiana. Although the H3 shared the same chassis as the Chevy Colorado, and the H2 was basically a Chevy Tahoe with a different body, the antipathy toward the gas Goliaths was immense.
posted by four panels at 11:58 AM - 58 comments

"It is 146 minutes long...This is an entirely inappropriate length for what is essentially a home video of gay men playing with giant Barbie dolls."

I Watched 146 Minutes of Sex and the City 2 and All I Got Was This Religious Fundamentalism - The legacy of the TV show destroyed forever.
posted by Artw at 11:51 AM - 222 comments

The Ban on Blood Donation

Are the Rules That Determine Who Can Donate Blood Discriminatory? Canadian AIDS researchers Dr. Mark Wainberg and Dr. Norbert Gilmore say that while the ban on blood donation from men who have sex with other men may have been ethically and scientifically justified in the 1980's, it no longer makes sense. (CMAJ.) Even though the US FDA reaffirmed their long-standing ban in 2007, they plan to revisit the policy in June. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:35 AM - 69 comments

Bug-eating slugs, fanged fish, and killer sponges (oh my)

Attenborough's Pitcher, an "Udderly Weird Yam," a two-inch phallic mushroom already immortalized on Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me, and the "Bombardier Worm" ("Chaff worm" would seem a more accurate name) are just four of the newly described species making the International Institute for Species Exploration's totally arbitrary Top 10 New Species list. [more inside]
posted by dust of the stars at 11:16 AM - 6 comments

Send Me (X) and I'll Make You (Y)

User-submitted inspiration for comics and art: Poorly-drawn cartoons inspired by actual spam subject lines (prev), and more refined comics from "normal" text spam text. Cartoons drawn from titles sent to one Sam Brown (pseudonym of Adam Culbert). Artists send artwork, someone else adds the text. Submit a video game title and description and get the box art made for you, courtesy of MeFi's own cheap paper [via mefi projects].
posted by filthy light thief at 11:11 AM - 21 comments

"I wouldn't want to live in a world without atoms."

The Peter Nguyen essays of 1999-2004 -- brilliant, illuminating, one-page studies of: [ Influential Person in World War 2: Jimmy McPersonBiography: Christopher ColumbusThe Stations of the Cross ReportBiography: Walt WhitmanU.S. Capitalism and Influence on Foreign NationsAtoms ]Bonus: Andrew Horowitz's "Preserving the Future: The Fight to Save Pop Rocks"
posted by not_on_display at 10:52 AM - 12 comments

flash fun

50 mostly flash fun sites. These include Record Tripping; Sound of Hamburg; Echogenesis; Incredibox in English and French; Optus Whale Song; Blues Master; Flame. And many more. Soundtrack For A Book is one of my favorites.
posted by nickyskye at 10:28 AM - 3 comments

The Geotaggers' World Atlas

Photographer Eric Fischer created stunning maps of the places that pictures are taken in fifty cities worldwide. New York. London. Paris. San Francisco. [more inside]
posted by emilyd22222 at 10:08 AM - 15 comments

Redesigned BP logos

Greenpeace invite redesigns of the BP logo. A few interesting ones. [more inside]
posted by nthdegx at 9:05 AM - 60 comments

Oh The Sexual Pleasure

On Failing To Make Bad Porn from Sex Worker Literati - Matthew Lawrence talks about being a rent boy who never shaved or worked out and his camera-obsessed client. Audio NSFW.
posted by The Whelk at 8:17 AM - 19 comments

Smooth Neck of the Moon

Clouds and Stars over Cotopaxi Volcano in Ecuador
posted by puny human at 8:17 AM - 13 comments

Space, an expensive frontier

Can the free market save the space program?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:08 AM - 41 comments

High Fashion Lesbian Hipsters

Lesbian Hipster Chic "I represent a small community of high fashion dykes, and I’m not talking about femmes or lipstick lesbians, to use the terms so popularized in culture today. We are often mistaken for straight fashionistas. We are the women who popularized chic undercuts, skinny jeans with patent leather wingtips, sexy flannel, fitted motorcycle jackets, Doc Martens and James Dean vibes minus the James. We are grrls, we are bois, we are young women with a taste for rock n’ roll, a penchant for sex appeal and an undying love for Alexander McQueen, may he rest in peace... It is our duty, as (NSFW) model lesbians, lesbian models, (NSFW) hipster dykes and purveyors of lesbian chic to establish ourselves as a force within the canon of high fashion... We’re fashion fagettes and we’re taking over the runways of New York, London, Milan and Paris. So let’s wrangle the model lesbians like Freja, Cat McNeil, Milou, Myf, Nimue editors like Kate Lanphear... and show fashion that as gay ladies, we not only epitomize the high fashion street style that has taken the world by storm, but we invented it." [more inside]
posted by Suparnova at 7:05 AM - 155 comments

Reality still eating itself.

Nokia's new ARG ad campaign seems to be co-opting activism for marketing. Written by Tim Kring of Heroes infamy. There's a good summary here. Strangely they managed to troll The Pirate Bay into a response and the bassist from Suede is doing the blog!
posted by debord at 6:08 AM - 26 comments

Who's counting? We are.

Popular Unrest is a multi-episode drama by Melanie Gilligan (of Crisis in the Credit System) set in a future much like the present. Here, however, all exchange transactions and social interactions are overseen by a system called ‘the Spirit’. A rash of unexplained killings have broken out across the globe. They often take place in public but witnesses never see an assailant. Just as mysteriously, groups of unrelated people are suddenly coming together everywhere, amassing new members rapidly. Unaccountably, they feel a deep and persistent sense of connection to one another. (via)
posted by anotherpanacea at 5:56 AM - 3 comments

Pink Hitler

Hitler dressed in pink is outrageous, shocking, offensive to Sicilian war vets.
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:04 AM - 45 comments

May 25

Exploitative Outsourcing?

Outsourcing has been a mainstay of internet marketers and lifestyle designers ever since Tim Ferriss made it popular. But at least one of its biggest proponents is now wondering: is outsourcing exploitative by taking advantage of international economic inequality?
posted by divabat at 9:57 PM - 60 comments

Butterfield On Lines

WELCOME TO MY NETSIGHT. WELCOME!
posted by turgid dahlia at 9:32 PM - 55 comments

I don't think that living through an artificial self is all that uncommon.

Professional oboe player, senior economist in the UK Treasury, fellow of King's College, Cambridge, son-in-law of Jacob Epstein (and model for his statue of St Michael). Wynne Godley, who also wrote about his 'disastrous encounter' with the psychoanalyst Masud Khan in the 1960s, died last week. [more inside]
posted by lapsangsouchong at 8:42 PM - 17 comments

Mandolin and Unicycle

The Mandolin & Unicycle Project is a thesis project from Matt Manos. "I have always wanted to learn how to ride a unicycle, and I have always wanted to learn how to play the mandolin, so the most logical conclusion I came to was to learn how to play the mandolin while riding the unicycle. In one month." The project blog starts here.
posted by unliteral at 7:33 PM - 23 comments

Six Degrees--Kinda. Sorta.

Six Degrees of Musical Separation. Billie Holiday linked to Jello Biafra? Check. Clyde McPhatter to Moby? They're connected. (Well, the site allows more than six degrees, and it cheats a little by connecting songs, but it's still a neat way to associate one musician or group to a completely different one.)
posted by John of Michigan at 6:55 PM - 99 comments

The art of advertising

AdViews is the newest of Duke University's digitized advertising archives (see previously). Unlike the earlier sites, devoted to print advertising, AdViews is all about American TV commercials--several thousand of them, to be exact, from the agency Benton & Bowles (later D'Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles). Viewing the commercials requires ITunes. [more inside]
posted by thomas j wise at 6:52 PM - 9 comments

Mutts for the Win!

Hey Spot! Good News! Finally, after 125 years of its existence, the American Kennel Club is letting mutts, or "All Americans," compete in AKC shows in their own category.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 4:39 PM - 88 comments

Digg for Conservatives?

Lately, the organizations that make up the American Republican Party/GOP have been experimenting with going online. The House Republicans have created America Speaking Out, a website for the people to give their ideas to "an arrogant congress." There, visitors can upload ideas they would like the government to carry out.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:51 PM - 191 comments

Magic numbers: A meeting of mathemagical tricksters

"Gary Foshee, a collector and designer of puzzles from Issaquah near Seattle walked to the lectern to present his talk. It consisted of the following three sentences: "I have two children. One is a boy born on a Tuesday. What is the probability I have two boys?"" [more inside]
posted by andoatnp at 3:20 PM - 233 comments

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