"Things work, until they don't." The Deck Network used by many independent web sites, including Metafilter, to make advertising revenue is shutting down. [more inside]
Rosado and Ortiz's mysterious killing on October 15, 2015, sent locals from Key Largo to Islamorada into a panic and left sheriff's deputies scrambling. Detectives would follow a trail of violence and blackmail for months before divining its source: Jeremy Macauley, a fisherman with a troubled past who'd found a bale of pure cocaine floating in the turquoise sea. Months later, a prosecutor's suicide and a surprise jailhouse interview would further muddy the tale.How a Floating Bale of Cocaine Led to the Florida Keys' Worst Murder in Decades, Tim Elfrinkm Miami New Times
The inaugural issue of Samovar, a quarterly magazine of and about speculative fiction in translation, has been published, "in which: two sisters create an imagined world where things that are lost can be found. A despot is forced to see the truth he's tried to hide from. An academic finds poetry, science fiction and reality beginning to merge. And the Curiosity Rover turns its gaze on Mars."
The Australian Senator Eric Abetz, who is against same-sex marriage generally, recently raised an objection to the Senate Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee, in which he stated that the rainbow flag should not be flown in the foyer of the Finance Department, as it is the flag of a hostile nation. [more inside]
Wait for it. Divers have been mystified by the crop circles that appeared on the ocean floor. Japanese scientists, Hiroshi Kawase, Yoji Okata & Kimiaki Ito discovered, finally, what they were. (Previously & previously) [more inside]
MENU — Dinner through the eyes of a photographer and a chef: Eating at a restaurant isn't about the sustenance. It's about the experience. A good menu is a story, with its own narrative arc. Tension is built and released, emotions are evoked and questions are raised. We want to create a visual exploration of this story. To keep it personal, we decided to use a very personal canvas. This is why our menu is not served on a plate, but on a face. And to capture the love and attention that goes into creating a good menu, we avoided any digital intervention. Every ingredient has been attached manually, no photoshop, handcrafted with every attention to detail. Just like in a good kitchen. [more inside]
Over the next years, Beširević lost everything: his apartment; his job at one of Slovenia’s finest 5-star hotels; the health care he needed to keep the thrombosis in his legs at bay. When he began to tell his story publicly, his family told him he was embarrassing them. Eventually he lost them too. He slept on the streets. He went to the Red Cross, only to be told they couldn’t help him, because he didn’t exist.
Tired of the mess and obligation of your boring old cats, dogs and whatnot? Why not get yourself a Strange Beast instead? (SLVimeo, under 5 minutes)
Tontines are a rather unusual form of investment annuity, and they may be making a comeback. [more inside]
Modern humans colonised the planet after coming out of Africa, spreadinjg across Asia some 60k years ago, thence everywhere. But how did we do so well, given that genetics suggests we were down to under 10,000 breeding pairs, possibly well under and possibly more than once? And what happened to the other hominids around at the time? [more inside]
It [YouTube] [Teaser Trailer] “The evil clown named Pennywise returns in this first look at New Line Cinema's horror thriller It, based on the classic Stephen King novel. Starring Finn Wolfhard, Javier Botet, Nicholas Hamilton, Megan Charpentier and Bill Skarsgård” [more inside]
Kenyan women routinely walk while balancing 60-80% of their body weight in loads on their heads. Some bioengineers in Kenya wanted to know how they could do this so easily. One thing they discovered is that, when standing on a treadmill, the women showed no energy expenditure at all, until they started to walk. All the things the engineers learned are leading to clever exoskeletons.
Stephin Merritt likes a concept and a challenge, and here he's set himself up with a big one: To create an album with 50 songs, one for each unfolding year of his life. The result is 50 Song Memoir, made with over 100 instruments, with Merritt and his cohorts playing seven or fewer instruments on every cut, in different combinations on each, with no instrument used more than seven times over the course of five half-hour discs. Stream it all via Apple Music or get a 5 song sampler via Spotify, or 16 tracks on YouTube (though there might be some geoblocking), and another YT playlist of 15 videos, starting with an official unboxing video, then getting to the official music videos. [more inside]
The Chicago Collections Consortium was founded in 2012 by 12 local libraries, universities, and museums to preserve and share Chicago's rich history and culture with the understanding that "our region's heritage should be available for all of us to explore -- freely, easily, and openly." To that end, in 2015, it launched its "flagship initiative, Explore Chicago Collections — a free, centralized, web-based search engine and record-finding tool that will allow researchers, teachers, students, and the general public to locate or access over 100,000 maps, photos, letters, and other archival materials held at its [now 25] member institutions.
A blowjob, therefore, never occurs in a vacuum. It is related to social expectations, especially to male expectations of productivity and work, but during the act itself these thoughts must fall away to make way for the implicit trust involved. To write a blowjob—within this social context and with the necessary nuance—is therefore achingly difficult. Even many of the great modernists fail to do so. Fellatio and Juliet: On the Hard Task of Writing About Blowjobs [NSFW]
On one side, Canada's largest independent newspaper, tracing its roots back to Joseph Howe. On the other, one of Canada's oldest unions, one that had never been involved in a labour dispute. Most expected it would be prolonged, but few expected it to be quite this long. [more inside]
"We Thought the Sun Would Always Shine on Our Lives" Bright, beautiful, and beloved, the young women of Chi Omega had it all—until they didn't.
"Sand strikers, also known as bobbit worms, are primitive-looking creatures that lack eyes, or even a brain. Despite this, they are savage predators who shoot out grapple-like hooks to reel in passing fish."
Nobody's sure why dogs tilt their heads [cheery lecture with music], but everyone agrees it's adorable [intro music, human noises, whining, barking]. [more inside]
Sebastian Gorka is a Trump advisor on terrorism, has ties(?) to Nazi collaborators, and political science PhD from Corvinus University in Hugary. What's his dissertation like? Daniel Nexon reviews: Sebastian Gorka May Be a Far-Right Nativist, but for Sure He’s a Terrible Scholar [more inside]
The Daily Beast reports that "Thirty-four years ago, on five consecutive episodes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, two feuding sects representing Russia and the United States began stockpiling parts for bombs—at one point stripping the neighborhood’s arts funding to bankroll the build-up." [more inside]
"In South Florida, cane toads are so numerous that they seem to be dropping from the sky. They're overtaking parking lots and backyards, can weigh almost six pounds, and pack enough poison to kill pets. Why the surge?" A long article at Outside about an increasing population of cane toads in South Florida. [more inside]
Research scientist Janelle Shane has been training a neural network to generate cooking recipes, based on 30 MB-worth of recipes. The results thus far have been interesting, to say the least. Would you perhaps like to try Beef Soup With Swamp Peef And Cheese? Or maybe Salmon Beef Style Chicken Bottom? Or maybe some delicious Star * ? [more inside]
Stray Cats Are Having The Best Time Playing In These Holes: Nyan Kichi is a Japanese photographer who dedicates his time to hanging out with and photographing stray cats. The cats have come to know and love him, and love to jump around and show off for him — especially in one particular spot that has a lot of drain pipe holes. Also: bleps, butts, and lots of leaping.
The Best Art is an ongoing artistic collaboration between the computer (MacBook Air, 13-inch, early 2015), and the human (Nicole He). The computer queries the universe and uses an algorithm to objectively calculate the best art for any given moment in time. The human executes the commands.
East Yorkshire has the fastest-eroding coastline in Europe, already some three miles inland of where it stood in Roman days. More than two dozen towns have disappeared beneath the waves of the North Sea. More details here.
Thieves Take a Chunk of Change, All 221 Pounds of It, From a Berlin Museum [The New York Times] “ You could never palm it, flip it or plunk it into a vending machine. But apparently it can be pinched: One of the world’s largest gold coins, a 221-pound Canadian monster called the Big Maple Leaf [wiki], was stolen overnight from the Bode Museum in Berlin, the police said on Monday. The coin is about 21 inches in diameter and over an inch thick. It has the head of Queen Elizabeth II on one side and a maple leaf on the other. Its face value is 1 million Canadian dollars, or about $750,000, but by gold content alone, it is worth as much as $4.5 million at current market prices.”
Spiders mostly eat insects, although some of the larger species have been known to snack on lizards, birds and even small mammals. Given their abundance and the voraciousness of their appetites, two European biologists recently wondered: If you were to tally up all the food eaten by the world's entire spider population in a single year, how much would it be? (Please note: the article is illustrated with gifs of spider nests being poked, if seeing those gives you the wiggins.)
If drawing your own Penrose Tilings or Mondrian-style images sounds like fun, or recreating A. K. Dewdney's simulated Wa-Tor World ecology, or solving Word Wheel puzzles; or if you'd just generally like a pool of projects, examples, and exercises to practice Python, then here you go: Learning Scientific Programming with Python. [more inside]
He knows English, German, French, Russian, Korean, Latin, and classical Greek. He's worked for Applebee's and interned for John Boehner. He has a wife and two kids, a job teaching political science and diplomacy, and about 19,000 more Twitter followers than he did a few weeks ago. Robert E. Kelly has been writing and speaking on international relations (especially in East Asia) and US foreign policy for several years. Some pieces of particular interest... [more inside]
Uppgivenhetssyndrom, or resignation syndrome, is said to exist only in Sweden, and only among refugees. The patients have no underlying physical or neurological disease, but they seem to have lost the will to live. The Swedish refer to them as de apatiska, the apathetic. “I think it is a form of protection, this coma they are in,” Hultcrantz said. “They are like Snow White. They just fall away from the world.” [Rachel Aviv, The New Yorker]
“'Someone very dear to me once said, ‘When I’m in your house or at the Rancho, I feel like I’m walking around inside of your body.’ I love that he didn’t say ‘mind,’ because I don’t create with my head. I create with my heart,” [Sheila Youngblood] says. “What I wear, what my spaces look and feel like—these are expressions of my own heart, and inviting people into a space where you can feel the love and the soulfulness is my goal. It’s an invitation into something deeper. It’s gratifying, inspiring, and undeniably real.'” From Texas Monthly, a lovely photo essay: The Most Colorful House in Texas. [more inside]
Whether you like Carly Rae Jepson or Taylor Swift, Michael Jackson or Johnny Cash, Disney or big movie epics, Brahms or Bizet, the Bottle Boys have it covered.
Why Belle Should Have Chosen Gaston, "A PowerPoint presentation by me" (warning: douchey automatic video plays on this page) is a scholarly but accessible look at factors, both personal and socioeconomic, that lead to the controversial and explosive conclusion that Belle should have opted to marry Gaston instead of the Beast.
Jared Rydelek reviews exotic fruit. Why fruit? Finding exotic fruit that is unavailable to the rest of the world is a bit like a treasure hunt. Finding something I never knew existed is a thrilling experience whether or not the fruit actually tastes good. Some of the fruits I find are tasty, some are disgusting, some are dangerous to eat, but all of them are interesting. Here is his review of the $80 mango. (Via).
Francesco Albano (no, not that one) creates human body sculptures that shock, disgust and horrify [NSFW]. He discusses his influences and his process in this short film [narration, light music].