John Fea, Professor of American History and Chair of the History Department at Messiah College in Grantham, Pennsylvania, documents his experience with the Returning to the Roots of the Civil Rights Tour on his blog, The Way of Improvement Leads Home. [more inside]
The Paris Air Show starts today, and features a list of known names showing off their newest aircraft, but there will also be some serious attempts to present flying cars. UK-based Neva Aerospace is promoting its AirQuadOne concept (PDF, press release), while the better-known Airbus has their Vahana concept, which is being pitched as on-demand aviation, in line with Uber's near-future goal of low-cost air taxis in Dubai and Dallas, TX by 2020. Not to be left out, Larry Page is backing the Kitty Hawk Flyer, less flying car, and more more human-sized drone that can only land on water. Looping back to the Paris Air Show and flying cars, AeroMobil, the sleek car-with-wings from Slovakia is back to the Air Show, after a serious crash in 2015.
‘Fiction takes its time’: Arundhati Roy on why it took 20 years to write her second novel [The Guardian] [more inside]
The best places to cry in New York, mapped. Most of them are even free.
Less than a decade ago, peak oil was a constant source of anxiety on MeFi (and around the world), but now the world faces an oil price anchored around $55/barrel. The reason is the swarm - US shale producers that can clamber into the market profitably at that price, and which are getting ever more competitive post recent fracking-bust as they drive down costs (and eliminate jobs, which are increasingly in renewables). Though the future is never certain, almost every major OPEC nation needs prices above $55 to balance their budget. While increased fossil fuel use can be very bad for climate change, the fracking boom is leading to the rapid replacement of coal with natural gas, which is generally a good thing for CO2 emissions, though leaking methane mitigates the benefit to an unceratin extent.
Gaudy? No, it's just Gaudi and his first house, now open to the public. His works always make me smile. I'm not so sure I'd want to actually live in them, but maybe I would.
Hope you managed to cash out of your Pokemon Go gyms this morning, because they've been disabled in preparation for a major overhaul of the game. [more inside]
This will reinstate trademark protections for an NFL team and a rock band with racial slurs as names.
Over the years, the heat from the trains soaked into the clay to the point where it can no longer absorb any more heat. Tunnels that were a mere 14 degrees Celsius in the 1900s can now have air temperatures as high as 30 degrees Celsius on parts of the tube network.As it's a nice, balmy 31 degrees in London at the moment, have a refreshing article about cooling off the Underground.
This essay analyses the sequence of seven plays by William Shakespeare known variously as the Modern Histories, the American Plays or the Nixoniad. Written by Shakespeare between 1971 and 1976, some during his extended stay in New York from 1969 to 1974 and the rest after his return to England, the American Plays cover roughly three decades of US history.... As Shakespeare's Julius Caesar causes some unexpected controversy, you might enjoy reading this essay (from 2015) on some of his other political plays: The Nixoniad - Shakespeare's modern history plays in context. [more inside]
Algiers - "The Underside of Power" (video). "On June 23, Matador Records will release [Algiers'] second album, The Underside of Power, a work of political critique that draws on and repurposes aggressive '80s punk, Italian horror soundtracks, modern-day hip-hop and R&B, film, literature, current events and continuing tragedies, all conceived as national politics on both sides of the Atlantic were boiling over. If there's anything in their history that the members do agree on, it's that the group — named for The Battle of Algiers, the 1960s film about an anti-colonial uprising — has always prized a collective instinct, where no one vision is definitive." Ned Raggett for NPR, on the band Algiers and their stunning new album.
Some makeup bloggers are a little more... intense than others. Jezebel takes a look at "The Rising Gore Girls of Instagram". (Content Warning: fake but convincing blood and guts)
From Garching to Innsbruck in 7 days [via mefi projects] "Hello, dear reader! I’m Michael, a 25-year-old recent graduate of computer science at TUM. This is the public diary of my hiking trip which will take me from the FMI building in Garching, Germany, where I studied for my master’s degree, to Innsbruck, Austria, where I spent the first 23 years of my life." [more inside]
Because we clearly needed yet another version, Nick Page has animated the first episode of the Hitchhiker's Guide Radio Series.
How genetics is settling the Aryan migration debate "The thorniest, most fought-over question in Indian history is slowly but surely getting answered: did Indo-European language speakers, who called themselves Aryans, stream into India sometime around 2,000 BC – 1,500 BC when the Indus Valley civilisation came to an end, bringing with them Sanskrit and a distinctive set of cultural practices? Genetic research based on an avalanche of new DNA evidence is making scientists around the world converge on an unambiguous answer: yes, they did."
The Corsairs Project - by photographer Samuka Marinho. An imagining of a 24-hour period set in the Golden Age of Piracy. Act I Act II Act III Act IV Act V Act VI Act VII Act VIII Act IX Act X
... nothing mattered more to Jeanie Buss than the family business — than her father’s legacy. [...] She is the controlling owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, as her late father wished. Four months ago, she fired her brother and also the team’s 17-year general manager on the same day, and installed trusted friend Earvin “Magic” Johnson as president of basketball operations. Then she prevailed in an ugly court battle with her two older brothers that confirmed she will run the Lakers for the rest of her life. ~ From roller hockey to the Lakers: How Jeanie Buss became the most powerful woman in sports By Tania Ganguli, LA Times
Stephen Furst, best known as Flounder in the classic comedy Animal House has shuffled off this mortal coil.
A Sociology of the Smartphone, 10 years after the launch of the iPhone. Interesting longread by Adam Greenfield. Via VersoBooks.
Ethereum is a blockchain, a "decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third party interference." In a phrase, use algorithms to replace contracts, or "code is law." But what if there was a bug that let let someone extract $53 million and walk out with it?
"The writing of textbooks and making them freely available on the web is an idea whose time has arrived. Most college mathematics textbooks attempt to be all things to all people and, as a result, are much too big and expensive. This perhaps made some sense when these books were rather expensive to produce and distribute--but this time has passed."
Two sets of work from artist Grégory Chiha:
- Têtes brûlées, books carefully burnt to create images of heads and faces.
- Fantômes, paintings with warped/strange/half-there subjects.
- Têtes brûlées, books carefully burnt to create images of heads and faces.
- Fantômes, paintings with warped/strange/half-there subjects.
“It’s in our genes,” he said. “Water managers were the first rulers of the land. Designing the city to deal with water was the first task of survival here and it remains our defining job. It’s a process, a movement. “It is not just a bunch of dikes and dams, but a way of life.”How the Dutch are Hansje Brinker proofing their cities.
At least 57 people have been killed by huge forest fires in central Portugal, with many dying in their cars as they tried to flee the flames, the government said on Sunday. Portugal’s prime minister, António Costa, described the blazes – which have injured dozens more people – as “the greatest tragedy we have seen in recent years in terms of forest fires”, and warned the death toll could rise. [more inside]
Fotos Frei Schnauze is a gallery of puppies in motion and at rest, frequently on the verge of catching treats.
With gold fixed at $35/ounce, mining for it had become unprofitable by the mid-60s. Time for the U.S. government to look elsewhere for gold: seawater, meteorites, plants, even deer antlers.
Comedian Iliza Shlesinger causes a stir when she makes some comments about the subject matter of fellow female comedians' acts: "I could walk into The Improv, close my eyes, and I can’t tell one girl’s act apart from another. That’s not saying that 30-something white guys don’t all sound the same sometimes, but I’m banging my head against the wall because women want to be treated as equals, and we want feminism to be a thing, but it’s really difficult when every woman makes the same point about her vagina, over and over. I think I’m the only woman out there that has a joke about World War II in my set." Summary on Splitsider, including some now-deleted tweets. Shlesinger also has declared herself finished with the debate: "Anyway, I'm done here. Enjoy your life" (Twitter)
Edgardo is a rancher from Loncopué, Argentina, who found an injured condor chick and nursed him back to health. He shared a video [cooing in Spanish] with his family and it promptly went viral (Google translation here). "Condorito" is being monitored by staff from Ecoparque de Buenos Aires and should be able to return to his nearby habitat soon.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs Conor McGregor [Deadspin] “It’s really happening. McGregor vs. Mayweather is actually a reality. The fight is like a nightmare emerging from a fever dream where the walls are papered with $100 bills, the carpet is made of the finest chinchilla fur, and you wake yourself up by stepping painfully on a discarded diamond ring instead of one of your kid’s discarded Legos. Let’s address the elephant in the room. Does McGregor, who hasn’t had an actual boxing match since he was a teenager, have a shot at beating a past-his-prime great? Yes, he has a shot. McGregor hits really, really hard, and chins don’t get better with age.”
National and global events all happened somewhere, and historical markers mark the place where many occurred. But the richness of history is in its local details, details that can be insignificant on the global stage: the home of an individual who made a difference; a natural feature, building, byway; or just something interesting that happened nearby. History is not just about the high and mighty.As we travel around, we may pass right by these roadside historical markers. That's where the Historical Marker Database comes in. [more inside]
Amanda Phingbodhipakkiya created 35 posters celebrating women scientists, engineers, and mathematicians. [more inside]
Why The Elder Scrolls Online Is Worth Playing In 2017 [MMOS World] “Today, The Elder Scrolls Online is almost a different game. Majority of the complaints from launch have been addressed. Fan favorite Elder Scrolls guilds like the Thieves Guild and The Dark Brotherhood have been added. The game is now on consoles, reaching a wider audience for revenue benefits. Level gated mechanics have been removed with the One Tamriel update, and gone are the days of player limitations. Level scaling arrived as well. On top of all that in the past year and a half, regular developer updates have hinted at things to come and they are worth the wait too. So why should players get excited for 2017? The answer is because the developers aren’t stopping with the good news.” [more inside]
Social Cooling describes the long-term negative side effects of living in a big-data-driven reputation economy. Data brokers derive thousands of scores from personal data; these form a “digital reputation”, and have the potential to affect their subjects' lives and opportunities. The long-term effects of this are a culture of conformity, self-censorship, risk aversion and social rigidity.
Pile of soft cotton clouds squeaks! DEMANDS SNACKS! Gently flaps wings during naps! There goes your weekend!
The Handman's Tale [slvideo]
If you've ever tried to walk from one subway station to another based on the nicely squared-off map of the routes, you may know that they don't correspond perfectly to actual geography (nor are they supposed to). Here's a series of animated illustrations that show you exactly how far off the transit map is from the real world. Pay particular attention to Austin's.
A yearlong investigation by the USA TODAY Network found that port trucking companies in southern California have spent the past decade forcing drivers to finance their own trucks by taking on debt they could not afford. Companies then used that debt as leverage to extract forced labor and trap drivers in jobs that left them destitute. (SL USA TODAY) [more inside]
"It can enforce contracts, prevent double spending, and cap the size of the money pool all without participants having to cede power to any particular third party who might abuse the power. No rent-seeking, no abuses of power, no politics — blockchain technologies can be used to create “math-based money” and “unstoppable” contracts that are enforced with the impartiality of a machine instead of the imperfect and capricious human bureaucracy of a state or a bank. ... Unfortunately this turns out to be a naive understanding of blockchain."
Joni Mitchell - Both Sides Now (Mama Cass Show 1969) Mama Cass, Mary Travers, & Joni Mitchell - I Shall Be Released (ibid.)
Starting July 3rd, Oregon will become the first state in the US to issue driver's licenses and state IDs with three gender abbreviations: M, F, and X. [more inside]
Haint blue is a shade of blue popular for keeping spirits away in the South. The shade itself is a faint robin's egg blue, and it's used to simulate the water that spirits called haints, hate. A haint can't cross water, just like the headless horseman, so you paint your porch to look like water, and you have no problems with haintings!