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He ain't smart, he just gestures that way

7 Hand Gestures That Make You Look Like a Real Intellectual
posted by St. Peepsburg on Feb 4, 2014 - 89 comments

“Two women walk into a bar and talk about the Bechdel test.”

What's the most intellectual joke you know? is Slate's summary of this Reddit thread (for once, the comments are worth it!), with more good comments in this Marginal Revolution discussion. Of course, we can do better...
posted by blahblahblah on Jun 28, 2013 - 178 comments

Baby Got Brooms

Quirky (previously) is a design and manufacturing website for inventors. In 2010, one of their users, Bill Ward, came up with an idea for a dustpan called the Broom Groomer with a comb-like edge for cleaning off all the dustbunnies and stuff that builds up on your broom. Turns out, gadget company OXO came out with a very similar design in 2012 called the Upright Sweep Set. Last week, the folks at Quirky staged a protest and paid for a billboard that accused OXO of ripping off their design. OXO responds on their blog with a mini-lesson on patents and international intellectual property rights.
posted by 23skidoo on Jan 27, 2013 - 77 comments

A Culture of Fake Originality

The fake intellectual invites you to conspire in his own self-deception, to join in creating a fantasy world. He is the teacher of genius, you the brilliant pupil. Faking is a social activity in which people act together to draw a veil over unwanted realities and encourage each other in the exercise of their illusory powers. The arrival of fake thought and fake scholarship in our universities should not therefore be attributed to any explicit desire to deceive. It has come about through the complicit opening of territory to the propagation of nonsense. An essay by Roger Scruton from Aeon magazine.
posted by chavenet on Dec 23, 2012 - 57 comments

To be read as a pair

The Rise of the Internet (Anti) Intellectual
posted by infini on Jul 22, 2012 - 72 comments

Dreaming in French

On Angela Davis.
posted by latkes on Mar 25, 2012 - 10 comments

RIP Christopher Hitchens

In Memoriam: Christopher Hitchens, 1949–2011
posted by naju on Dec 15, 2011 - 491 comments

Clifton Fadiman's Lifetime Reading Plan

Clifton Fadiman's Lifetime Reading Plan, 3rd Edition (not to be confused with Clifton Fadiman and John S. Major's Lifetime Reading Plan, 4th Edition) [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Sep 13, 2011 - 34 comments

Back to the earth, I mean trademark office.

The Urban Homestead®: Where sustainable urban living and intellectual property collide. Previously on mefi we learned about some urban homesteaders in Pasadena, CA calling themselves the Dervaes Institute. According to the OC Weekly Blog Stick a Fork in It: "In October of last year, the Dervaeses successfully registered the terms "Urban Homestead" and "Urban Homesteading" with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. But only in the past couple of weeks have they been sending cease-and-desist letters to organizations and blogs using the terms without their permission, successfully asking Facebook to shut down groups using those terms as their name." [more inside]
posted by mandymanwasregistered on Feb 16, 2011 - 54 comments

History of Western Philosophy Influence Charts

History of Western Philosophy, illustrated in huge scroll-down timelines. Kevin Scharp at OSU made these, based on work by Randall Collins, and they are great. Includes the influence of the Muslim world. He also has separate diagrams on a few specific issues, eg paradoxes, theories of truth, etc. This link goes to his fast-loading index page, where you can click to load the (big) charts. [more inside]
posted by LobsterMitten on Nov 11, 2010 - 43 comments

single comic financial times link

Click here? Was structuralism, the big idea of Claude Lévi-Strauss, more cult than science? Apostolos Doxiadis, Alecos Papadatos and Annie Di Donna – the team behind the bestselling graphic novel Logicomix – investigate.
posted by infini on Mar 18, 2010 - 30 comments

The Unqualified Reservations of Mencius Moldbug

Unqualified Reservations is a fascinating ongoing commentary on society and governance in postmodernity. He's currently on about the pwning of Richard Dawkins, after writing about Mediocracy and Official Journalism. It might be best to first read his earlier posts in which he defines the self-invented terminology he's fond of using, like: Formalism, The Iron Polygon, Universalism, Neocameralism, and The Rotary System. [more inside]
posted by blasdelf on Oct 29, 2007 - 44 comments

Sorry, kids. We're stealing your work and selling it

Commercial exploitationTube? Creative Commies-Tube? Plagiarism® ? "…you hereby grant YouTube a worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free, sublicenseable and transferable license to use, reproduce, distribute, prepare derivative works of, display, and perform the User Submissions in connection with the YouTube Website and YouTube's (and its successor's) business, including without limitation for promoting and redistributing part or all of the YouTube Website (and derivative works thereof) in any media formats and through any media channels…" moc.ebutuoy

whata circlejerk... Now where's my aeroflot and reversed copyright Tee-Shirt! and Negativland, Tape-beatles, EEC records. I'm ready for a copyfight !
posted by Unregistered User on Jul 21, 2006 - 27 comments

Don’t get me started on his brother Seymour...

Northwestern engineering professor Arthur R. Butz has over 6,000 signatures denouncing his commendation of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's assertion that the Holocaust is a myth. Rumor has it the university was going to stop hosting faculty sites instead of singling out Butz. His (lousy) university webpage is still up though. Prompted in part by prev discussion here
posted by Smedleyman on Mar 10, 2006 - 100 comments

...plainly jinxed by whatever faith he cringes before ...

President Jonah --an essay/history lesson/bible lesson/etc by Gore Vidal. ...We have also come to a point in this dark age where there is not only no hero in view but no alternative road unblocked. We are trapped terribly in a now that few foresaw and even fewer can define ...
posted by amberglow on Jan 28, 2006 - 33 comments

"the inclusion of Christopher Hitchens has already raised eyebrows in academia"

Another year, another list of top 100 intellectuals of our time from Prospect Magazine and with Foreign Policy. Self-confessedly anglocentric, but with an effort "to include thinkers from outside the west", it raises the perennial 'where are the women' question (now in good company with 'where are the scientists') and sanctions the decline of: the left, France, Europe, psychology, psychiatry and philosophy. The ever present Germaine Greer says "these lists are always so right-wing" and her inclusion is "absurd and completely unjustifiable". You can vote your 5 favourites and suggest other names.
posted by funambulist on Oct 3, 2005 - 37 comments

Lessig and Epstein debate DRM, IP law

In Technology Review, Lawrence Lessig and Richard Epstein are debating intellectual property, free software, and digital rights management. Shamelessly lifted, verbatim, from a post by Reason's Jesse Walker
posted by Kwantsar on May 19, 2005 - 14 comments

My dad is cleverer than your dad!

Top 100 British...Intellectuals? Rock bands, schmock bands. Who are currently the cream of British Intelligentsia? Prospect names 100 of (supposedly) the UK's finest and asks you to vote for your top 5, plus a write-in. The list is discussed further here. Some entrants may make you wonder, some may make you gasp, most you just won't have a clue about!
posted by biffa on Jul 1, 2004 - 22 comments

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