Swimming around in a mixture of language and matter, humans occupy a particular evolutionary niche mediated by something we call 'consciousness'. To Professor Nicholas Humphrey we're made up of "soul dust
": "a kind of theatre... an entertainment which we put on for ourselves inside our own heads." But just as that theatre is directed by the relationship between language and matter, it is also undermined by it
. It all depends how you think it.
posted by 0bvious
on Feb 4, 2011 -
Badass Lego Guns
, a short YouTube video (1.55) showing five working guns built from instructions from the book of the same name by Martin Hudepohl. [more inside]
posted by bwg
on Jan 27, 2011 -
John Park Finley
, American meteorologist, wrote the first known book on tornadoes
, 1887). Though some of his "safety" guidelines for surviving a tornado have since been refuted as dangerous (seek shelter on the side of a house facing an oncoming tornado!), the book remains a seminal work in tornado research. [more inside]
posted by Wossname
on Jan 25, 2011 -
The book “Traumgedanken
” (“Thoughts about dreams”) contains a collection of literary, philosophical, psychological and scientifical texts which provide an insight into different dream theories. To ease the access to the elusive topic, the book is designed as a model of a dream about dreaming. Analogue to a dream, where pieces of reality are assembled to build a story, it brings different text excerpts together. They are connected by threads which tie in with certain key words.
posted by chavenet
on Dec 29, 2010 -
"Sometimes I can almost visualize parts of myself, the ones I’m most proud of, atrophying. I wish I had an app to monitor it! I notice that my thoughts are homeopathic, that they mirror content I wish I weren’t reading." Sad as Hell
: n+1 on the internet's effect on the self and the book Super Sad True Love Story (which has an damn good book trailer
). The novel is set in a dystopian future where constant access to the internet results in a world “dense with panic and media.” [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla
on Dec 10, 2010 -
Nearly three decades ago, folklorist Alvin Schwartz
published Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark
, the first of three horror anthologies that would go on to become the single most challenged book series of the 1990s
. But most of the backlash
was against not the stories themselves (which were fairly tame), but rather the illustrations of artist Stephen Gammell
. His bizarre, grotesque, nightmarish black-and-white inkscapes suffused every page with an eerie, unsettling menace. Sadly, the series has since been re-issued
with new illustrations by Brett Helquist
, of A Series of Unfortunate Events
fame. Luckily for fans of Gammell's dark vision, copies of the old artwork abound online, including in these three image galleries: Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, Scary Stories 3: More Tales to Chill Your Bones
. Interested in revisiting the stories themselves? Then don't miss the virtual re-enactments of YouTube user MoonRaven09
, or the dramatic readings of fellow YouTuber daMeatHook
posted by Rhaomi
on Oct 29, 2010 -
El Quijote Interactivo
is a site from the Biblioteca Nacional de España displaying the 1605 edition of Miguel Cervantes' Don Quixote.
You can of course turn pages and zoom in and out. But, you can also search text, get a map of Don Quixote's travels, read associated books and expert commentaries, forward through 50 editions of the book, listen to music referenced by Don Quixote and, yes, share pages with your Facebook friends. This Youtube video
walks you through it.
posted by vacapinta
on Oct 28, 2010 -
Chris Kimball prepares a 12-course meal from Fannie Farmer's 1896 cookbook.
Using only a coal stove and other authentic Victorian-era kitchen staples, the chef, who lives in Fannie Farmer's former home
, recreated a classic holiday Victorian meal from her iconic 1896 cookbook.
The twelve courses included: "rissoles (filled and fried puff pastry), mock turtle soup with fried brain balls, lobster à l’Américaine, roast goose with chestnut stuffing and jus, wood-grilled salmon, roast saddle of venison, Canton punch, three molded Victorian jellies and a spectacular French-inspired Mandarin cake."
Chris Kimball is the creator of public television's America's Test Kitchen
) and Cook's Illustrated
. Naturally, he chronicled the experience in a book, aptly titled, Fannie's Last Supper
. In it, he offers some moden adaptations of Fannie Farmer's recipes. A film depicting the difficulties of authentically re-creating the meal airs this Fall.
posted by misha
on Oct 6, 2010 -
Merchants of Doubt
is a new book that reports how a small group of scientists committed to an extreme free-market ideology have been employed by large corporations over several decades to cast doubt on such different environmental issues as the risks of tobacco smoke, the dangers of DDT, the effectiveness of the Strategic Defence Initiative, the regulation of CFCs, and the causes of global warming. A review
in the Christian Science Monitor calls this "one of the most important books of the year. Exhaustively researched and documented..."
posted by binturong
on Jul 12, 2010 -
It's like a concert tour but with sketchbooks.
Get a sketchbook, fill it based on a theme (you can pick one or have one assigned randomly) by a certain date, then let it go on tour and eventually be a barcoded, checkout-able book in the Brooklyn Art Library that you can track. I love this idea.
posted by jragon
on Jul 10, 2010 -
Nevertheless, many of the gamers I encounter report the same experience of feeling as if they have engaged in some kind of transgression. There’s often a sense of guilt that comes with tales of gaming exploits, as if games were a vice or a character flaw, a symptom of one kind or another. [...]
So my cards are on the table: I’m going to offer some alternative, positive descriptions. This analysis will show how video games have inspired artists, transformed rags into riches, given purpose to empty lives, and entertained bored people on a Sunday afternoon. We’ll see how games turned young people into heroes and how gaming has enabled the realization of previously unimaginable ambitions. We’ll see how games can make us better people, how they dissolve the horrors of boredom—and how they can function as propaganda for a wide range of worthy and unworthy causes.
This Gaming Life
by Jim Rossignol (of Rock, Paper, Shotgun
) is a book about gaming, gamers, and how they affect each other - available in full and for free under a Creative Commons licence.
posted by Electric Dragon
on Jul 6, 2010 -
There are Real Fake Buildings
, Real Fake Watches
, real fake books
, and of course, "The Internet's LARGEST Selection of Real Fake Rocks!
But for truly high-end fakes -- the "realest" of the fakes -- there's the Museum of Fakes
in Southern Italy
, or even better, the Museum of Art Fakes
in Vienna, which includes etchings from "last living master forger from Germany."
"The Museum of Art Fakes, almost directly opposite the Hundertwasserhaus, is unique in Europe. It is filled with paintings from not only world famous forgers (such as van Meegeren, Tom Keating, David Stein, Konrad Kujau, Edgar Mrugalla, Lothar Malskat), but also so-called ‘identical-forgeries’ of Schiele, Klimt, Monet, Raffael and many more."
posted by not_the_water
on Jun 4, 2010 -