Instead of taking us out of the real world and drawing us into the artificial virtual space, [Pokémon Go] combines the two; we look at reality and interact with it through the fantasy frame of the digital screen, and this intermediary frame supplements reality with virtual elements which sustain our desire to participate in the game, push us to look for them in a reality which, without this frame, would leave us indifferent. Sound familiar? Of course it does. What the technology of Pokémon Go externalizes is simply the basic mechanism of ideology—at its most basic, ideology is the primordial version of “augmented reality.”Slavoj Žižek unpacks Pokémon Go .
The #GoogleTranslatesMTG hashtag highlights Magic: The Gathering (previously) cards that have been run through Google Translate many times before finally arriving back in English. @RosewattaStone is working to post a new one every day. You may prefer to have Desert Bus read the cards out loud to you... well, try to read them, anyway. [more inside]
CinemaSins is a very popular youtube channel whose motto is that "no movie is without sin. We exist mostly just to remind you of that." It is also a youtube channel that is wrong about everything. And I mean it. [more inside]
Dave Pell (Managing Editor, the Internet) has produced a special edition of his newsletter: the reader-supplied NextDraft Good News Only Pre-Thanksgiving Extravaganza. [more inside]
While the show is currently halfway through, Land of the Lustrous has already announced itself as a singular vision. The only other show to surpass it this year is David Lynch’s magnum opus Twin Peaks: The Return. But where Lynch rewrites the rules of history and structure, Kyogoku redefines cinematic motion. We are lucky to witness something so bold, so utterly new this year, and nothing looks and feels more unlike anything else than Land of the Lustrous.Carol Grant looks at the beauty and horror of Houseki no Kuni/Land of the Lustrous, a CGI anime show about sentient non-gendered jewel-people fighting off Lunerian invaders who want to harvest their bodies.
Adam Hillman, an artist from New Jersey, makes colorful geometric art from the arrangement of unremarkable objects.
Brazil's Video Game Gray Markets [YouTube] “Brazil’s video game market is strange. A military dictatorship ruled the country from 1964 to 1985 and enforced strict protectionist economic laws. During the period, Brasília eschewed imports and attempted to manufacture everything it could within its country’s borders. That led to an odd hodgepodge of cloned systems, strange cartridges, and pirated games that are still with the country today. Drew Scanlon of Clothmap recently traveled to Brazil where he explored the strange gray markets that make up the country’s video game culture. He sees a combo Mortal Kombat/ Street Fighter II cartridge made to run on an NES, strange consoles of questionable legality, and learns what happens when the local games store learn the cops are coming to raid the place.” [via: Motherboard] [Previously.]
Slippery Stairs is a Japanese game show that delivers exactly what it promises. [SLYT]
Stobe the Hobo, the internet’s most famous train-hopper, dead after apparent accident
James Stobie was the most famous train-hopping hobo on the internet. He rode the rails in a way that was reminiscent of a desperate man searching for work at every city he could find during the Great Depression. Except that Stobie, aka Stobe the Hobo, made YouTube videos about his experiences, hopping trains to move around the country for the pure fun of it.[more inside]
In February, after an investigation by ProPublica, Facebook announced it would be more diligent about prohibiting housing, employment and credit discrimination in ads on its platform. (In the United States, the federal Fair Housing Act (FHA) prevents discrimination based on race, skin color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin.) As a follow-up, ProPublica bought dozens of rental housing ads on Facebook last week, but asked that they not be shown to certain categories of users: African Americans, Muslims, mothers of high school kids, the blind and/or people interested in wheelchair ramps, Jews, people from Puerto Rico, expats from Argentina and Spanish speakers. All are groups protected by the FHA. Every single ad was approved within minutes.
As holiday festivities ramp up, you might be wondering "how should I decorate this table? Why should I decorate this table?" To answer both questions, Curbed continues its Period Dramas series with How Christmas decorations evolved through the 1800s in New England. For another look at (New England) Christmas Past, here's Christmas: Williamsburg Style. But wait, you say, let's tackle one holiday at a time. OK, here's the origin of the Thanksgiving cornucopia, and more on the cornucopia in general. If you want a more beachy theme, here's Secret Life of Antiques: Victorian Shell Work. And if you combine all that, you can get a festive garbage clam, just like Ivanka Trump. Holiday centerpiece problem solved!
Survivors called Mr. Mladic the Butcher of Bosnia. The deadliest year of the campaign was 1992, when 45,000 people died, often in their homes, on the streets or in a string of concentration camps. Others perished in the nearly four-year siege of Sarajevo, the Bosnian capital, where snipers and shelling terrorized residents for more than three years, and in the mass executions of 8,000 Muslim men and boys after Mr. Mladic’s forces overran the United Nations-protected enclave of Srebrenica. [more inside]
"In 1905, Charles Clayton ("Todd") Webb III was born in Detroit, Michigan. Having been a successful stockbroker in the 1920’s, he lost all of his earnings, and then some, in The Crash. During the Depression, Webb prospected for gold, worked as a forest ranger, and wrote short stories that have gone unpublished. It was during this exploratory period in the 1930s that he first picked up a camera. His interest and love for photography soon crowded out his writing ambitions, and he was able to do the two things he loved the most: travel, meet people, and photograph them."
A science blogger asked UK water companies if they still used the ancient 'art' of water divining / dowsing ... and the answer was yes, mostly. Since the story broke the companies have backtracked somewhat - it's not official policy but it still goes on.
The Icicle Atlas contains more than 230,000 images of icicles (plus 3D models, time lapse movies and time-series data) on 237 icicles made at the University of Toronto over a five year period. [Via Ottawa Citizen] The atlas is the end product of a quest to determine why icicles form ripples.
1970s teen heartthrob David Cassidy of The Partridge Family dies from liver failure [autoplay video]. One of the Partridge Family hits was "I Think I Love You."
Warning: graphic violence
After the liberation of Mosul, an orgy of killing
After the liberation of Mosul, an orgy of killing
Black Friday as a commercial concept probably shouldn't have gotten off the ground in Australia, but the rumour mill suggests a hard launch of the local site this Friday. [more inside]
Last weekend, NTS and Sonos presented a full weekend of programming celebrating the David Bowie, broadcasting direct from the new Sonos London store on Seven Dials in Covent Garden. Hosts included Dev Hynes, Iggy Pop, Thurston Moore, Connan Mockasin, Neneh Cherry, and many more. The full archive is here; descriptions of individual shows (as provided by the NTS website), with links to each show, follow. [more inside]
Prehi(p)storic An early history of the ostentatious moustache, a storymap from the Early Celtic Art in Context project.
Christopher Herwig is back with more wild architectural wonders: When Christopher Herwig, a Canadian photographer, first embarked on his arduous long-distance cycle from London to St Petersburg back in 2002, the outlandishly designed bus stop was nothing more than a pleasing oddity. What Herwig didn’t expect was that this was only the start of his life-long obsession; there were similarly peculiar roadside shelters scattered across the post-Soviet world. His Soviet Bus Stops Volume II is a new collection of bus stop photos from remote areas of Georgia, Ukraine, and Russia. Herwig previously on Metafilter: A fascinating journey of architectural obsession (also previously and previouslier).
I do love the Cambrian Explosion but this is just as spectacular. I checked the link to the original publication but it only leads to an abstract so this article is better.
CEO of HQ (a live trivia app) to The Daily Beast: If You Run This Profile, We’ll Fire Our Host
[CEO] Yusupov’s objections began with the line, "Scott said that despite the attention, he's still able to walk down the street and order his favorite salad from Sweetgreen without being accosted." "He cannot say that!" Yusupov shouted. "We do not have a brand deal with Sweetgreen! Under no circumstances can he say that." [...] When The Daily Beast read Yusupov a quote from Rogowski saying “I can make people happy and give them the trivia they so desperately love and want. It's been so great to build this community," Yusupov implored the reporter to “take that out.” Asked for clarification, Yusupov replied that Rogowski was absolutely not allowed to say that he "enjoys making people happy and giving them the trivia they want."
- But for the actual test – this is the sentence that Rorschachians always repeat – ‘what matters isn’t what you see, but how you see.’ A few ‘content’ answers would later come to be thought significant: ‘food responses’ indicate that a person is ‘unusually dependent’ in relationships; a lot of sexual responses point to schizophrenia. But of more importance is whether an answer is judged to have ‘good form’ – ‘whether it could reasonably be said to describe the actual shape of the blot’ – as determined by Rorschach’s own sense of things, and also by responses from other ‘normal subjects’; he doesn’t say how he determined that those subjects were normal.
The drumbeat of devastating news can take its toll on the mental health of people who have devoted their lives to coral. [more inside]
The climate crisis? It’s capitalism, stupid. Benjamin K. Fong ( NYT Opinion) Kim Stanley Robinson: We’ve Come To A Bad Moment And We Must Change, climate change, capitalism, and dystopia.
Russ Slater’s vanguarda paulista playlist [After tropicalia ended, the more conservative MPB reigned,] The vanguarda paulista that emerged at the end of the 70s attempted to return to those heady days of tropicália, when it was possible for music to be popular, even as it combined advanced compositional theories with irreverent lyrical ideas and an awareness of mass culture. These same traits characterised the work of the São Paulo based group of musicians and composers who congregated around the small theatre, live venue and record label called the Lira Paulistana.
25 years ago, Mortal Kombat redefined American video games [Polygon] “What Mortal Kombat lacked in substance, though, it made up for with style. Its characters, digitized from motion capture footage of martial arts actors, looked “realistic” by the standards of the era. Their movements had a choppy quality, and the fighters never looked like they really inhabited their photorealistic settings, but Mortal Kombat’s gory, lifelike gloom gave it a heavy metal album cover feel that set it apart from Street Fighter’s cartoonish fare. Mortal Kombat’s brawlers bled, froze and died in a number of explicit ways ranging from brutal impalement in a pit of spikes to messy dismemberment. Midway’s brawler invested its viscera with a panache that became the game’s main draw.” [YouTube][Mortal Kombat - 25 Year Anniversary Trailer] [more inside]
"But in order to grasp the current homecoming of white supremacism in the west, we need an even deeper history. [...] Such a history would show that the global racial order in the century preceding 1914 was one in which it was entirely natural for “uncivilised” peoples to be exterminated, terrorised, imprisoned, ostracised or radically re-engineered. Moreover, this entrenched system was not something incidental to the first world war, with no connections to the vicious way it was fought or to the brutalisation that made possible the horrors of the Holocaust. Rather, the extreme, lawless and often gratuitous violence of modern imperialism eventually boomeranged on its originators."
A catchy song about dogs to brighten up your Tuesday. (A SLYT from the people who brought you Dump Truck and Cement Mixer. )
Interstellar object confirmed to be from another solar system - it's dark red and has organic material - absolutely nothing to worry about [nudity].
Tanja Brandt loves photographing animals. A recent project involves Ingo, a Belgian shepherd, and Poldi (Napoleon), a one-year-old owlet.
The Last of the Iron Lungs "In 2013, the Post-Polio Health International (PPHI) organizations estimated that there were six to eight iron lung users in the United States. Now, PPHI executive director Brian Tiburzi says he doesn’t know anyone alive still using the negative-pressure ventilators. This fall, I met three polio survivors who depend on iron lungs. They are among the last few, possibly the last three."
The end of Net Neutrality to be announced by the FCC as early as this Thanksgiving week. As early as tomorrow, Tuesday, November 21, in the year of our lord 2017, the FCC may announce their intention to dismantle the Obama-era rule that guarantees that all web traffic be created equal. Fast lanes for some websites, blocking competitors' websites for others (let's not forget that Comcast is looking to buy some of Fox while we discuss this). [more inside]
Tommy Tucker was a male grey squirrel who toured the United States wearing women's fashions and selling war bonds to support America in WWII as well as other charitable endeavors. He died in 1949, was stuffed and was bequeathed to the Smithsonian in 2005. While the museum maintains an archive of Tommy Tucker related ephemera (and possibly dresses), the actual stuffed squirrel lives in the lawyer's office who had been handling the bequest according to this podcast. (prev, via)
Native Americans had long tried to prevent the theft of their dead. But it was not until the 1960s, in the wake of the Civil Rights movement, that activists turned collections into a question of conscience: Why were U.S. museums filled almost exclusively with the bones of Native Americans? “When a white man’s grave is dug up, it’s called grave robbing,” as the Tohono O’odham activist Robert Cruz said in 1986. “But when an Indian’s grave is dug up, it’s called archaeology.”The long ethical arc of displaying human remains: A look at why museums exhibit Egyptian mummies, but not Native American bones, by Chip Colwell.
Your Reckoning. And Mine. As stories about abuse, assault, and complicity come flooding out, how do we think about the culprits in our lives? Including, sometimes, ourselves. [content warning: sexual assault, harassment] [more inside]
They were once Olympic rivals — one the captain of the U.S. women's hockey team, the other the captain of Canada's women's hockey team. But now Julie Chu and Caroline Ouellette are celebrating the birth of their daughter. [more inside]
What better way to share your love of video games and your love of dance than by combining them? (SLYT)
Amazingly intricate dollhouse of three stories by Gayle Palama. Ignore the first two photos. These are close-up photos of each floor of the dollhouse. The amount of work that went into the furniture and goods and decor of these rooms is truly astonishing. Hover on a photo and a short title will pop up. I found this blog of hers which may provide more info. Annadancie
Some U.S. Hospitals Don’t Put Americans First for Liver Transplants: At a time when there aren’t enough livers for ailing Americans, wealthy foreigners fly here for transplant (SLProPublica)
Flemish bitterness about this lies close to the surface, as so much else does in the fields of Flanders. At the monument on an autumn morning I met a local writer, André Gysel: “There are six million Danish people; they have a country,” he told me. “We have six million but we share our country with these other people and we give them €1,000 a year from each of us. And they never say thank you.” He paused, witheringly: “Mer-ci!”
Two minutes and one second into its annual mega-sale, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba hit $1 billion in sales, quickly passing Amazon's 2017 Prime Day sales record. By the end of the day, the final sales tally rang in at $25,386,927,848, about 40% higher than last year's record. How do you hype a commercial holiday that dwarfs Black Friday and Cyber Monday in the United States? A musical number from Pharrell Williams, as part of a lavish gala in Shanghai with Nicole Kidman, Karen Mok and Maria Sharapova. And why November 11? To co-opt Singles' Day, which was created in the 1990s by a group of university students at Nanjing University, before the Chinese entrepreneur Jack Ma founded Alibaba.
It's time. In just a few days, the first ball in The Ashes (mens) will be bowled. Beginning in 1882, the current score is Australia: 32, England: 32. A few previous players, one of whom could bowl a bit. The Ashes are part of a tour of Australia and New Zealand by England which concludes after five months. England start without their star player while Australia have undertaken some unexpected squad selections. Joe Root, the England captain previously punched by Australia's star player, may be a decisive factor; diplomatic incident and in-play violence are, unlike previously, unlikely but not impossible. There will be much verbal abuse from players and spectators, plus mental disintegration. In the Women's Ashes, currently drawing to a close, Australia have retained the urn. Previously.