101 Useful Websites is "a frequently updated list of lesser-known but wonderful websites and cool web apps. Here are some of the most useful websites on the internet that you may not know about. These web sites, well most of them, solve at least one problem really well and they all have simple web addresses (URLs) that you can memorize thus saving you a trip to Google." [more inside]
It's Tiara Thursday at The Royal Order of Sartorial Splendor, where each week the provenance & history of a different royal tiara is highlighted. You could start browsing from top 15 readers' favorite tiaras or the top 10 ultimate tiara collection, featuring such sparkly as the Danish Ruby Parure Tiara and the Girls of Great Britain & Ireland Tiara. [more inside]
Ariel Meadow Stallings (creator of Offbeat Mama and Offbeat Bride) on liberal bullying: "...what's the biggest challenge we deal with every day? The challenge that has my editors second-guessing every post and quaking in fear, just waiting for the awfulness to begin? It's attacks from our fellow progressives... Increasingly, I've started recognizing this kind of behavior for what it is: privilege-checking as a form of internet sport. It's a kind of trolling, with all the politics I agree with, but motivations and execution that turns my stomach. It's well-intended (SO well-intended), but when the motivations seem to be less about opening dialogue about the issues, and more about performance, righteousness, and intolerance for those who don't agree with you… well, I'm not on-board." [more inside]
How I Lost Faith In The Pro-Life Movement: "What I want to share here is how I came to this realization. And if you, reader, are one of those who opposes abortion because you believe it is murder and you want to save the lives of unborn babies, well, I hope to persuade you that the pro-life movement is not actually your ally in this, that you have been misled, and that you would be more effective in decreasing the number of abortions that occur if you were to side with pro-choice progressives. If this is you, please hear me out before shaking your head." [more inside]
Books on the Knob, Pixel of Ink, and iReader Review are three blogs that feature free & bargain ebooks daily. If you want to start simple there's OpenCulture's 375 Free eBooks list but if you don't mind doing some footwork then there's this very comprehensive 614 Places for Free eBooks Online post (with divisions of content by genre) on Gizmo's Freeware. [more inside]
Geek Art Gallery features many different kinds of geek-related art in round-ups and posts: art installations, animation, comics, film shorts, paintings, photography, sculpture - even desserts. Specifically craft-focused geek blogs: Geek Crafts and Sprite Stitch (previously)
Barking Up The Wrong Tree distils scientific research, focused on its motto: "I want to understand why we do what we do and use the answers to be awesome at life." With a gradual shift to more digest posts packed with links to summaries & sources, a sampling of the past couple weeks includes: What are 10 things you should do every day to improve your life? - What are 10 things you should do every week to improve your life? - 25 research-based ways to increase your intelligence - What are 7 things that can make you happier in 7 seconds? - 7 steps to never procrastinating again. Another blog along the same lines but less glib & immediate is Peer-Reviewed By My Neurons; recently: How confusion facilitates learning - The science of coming on too strong - Want to be creative? Play Dungeons & Dragons [more inside]
The Mahogany Blog (based in London) features a diverse range of (often indie and/or upcoming) music: through streaming singles, guest mixes and video posts, sharing others' mixes, and brief interviews with artists. Their YouTube channel hosts The Mahogany Sessions - acoustic musical performances exclusive to and filmed by the blog.
Ana White shares hundreds of free furniture plans on her website, encouraging those who may have never built furniture before. Formerly known as "Knock Off Wood" since she had DIY versions of popular retail styles, she changed her name after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from Williams-Sonoma (owner of Pottery Barn and West Elm). An audio interview with Ms. White and a Flickr pool of completed projects. (via Balancing Everything)
"To be a young woman in our culture means that you exist, from an alarmingly young age, for the appreciation of others. Therefore, your every feature is fair game for public appraisal."
Finslippy: On being an object, and then not being an object. This starts young. But "...girls are being nice to one another. They're complimenting each other. They are telling each other something important about the world and their place in it." Sometimes, compliments aren't really compliments and "flattering" can be body policing.
Hipster girl? Hipster boy? Superhero? Mii? A modern Mucha? Regency hero or heroine? Tudors? Steampunk (one, two)? Here's more. How about pop culture? True Blood. Mad Men (Joan S1, S2, S3). Marty McFly (by Derek Eads). Jonathan Coulton. Lady GaGa. Kyle Hilton (previously: Arrested Development) also has Parks and Recreation, Breaking Bad, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, and various films. (previously: a blog - manly - PONIES)
5 things I learned today: five interesting links posted (almost) every day
...Failed Simulations & the Surprising Psychology of Impressiveness: "Accomplishments that are hard to explain can be much more impressive than accomplishments that are simply hard to do", posits Cal Newport of Study Hacks ("Decoding Patterns of Success" - at work, at school). (via AskMeFi) Also from the blog: The Passion Trap ("How the Search for Your Life’s Work is Making Your Working Life Miserable") and Beyond Passion ("The Science of Loving What You Do"). [more inside]
Relating SCIENCE! to everyday life, Ouch: A Year's Worth of Occasionally Disturbing Research on How to Get Ahead is comedic advice on how to excel in the new year (from the usually-more-serious Harvard Business Review's "The Daily Stat") - reminiscent of Barking Up The Wrong Tree, a blog of tongue-in-cheek nuggets of research by Eric Barker.
Criggo is a blog that posts amusing newspaper bloopers and oddities - bad headlines, poorly chosen pictures, strange advertisements, etc. The blog only has the past month's worth of posts, but it's archived in its entirety here. [more inside]
Francesco Marciuliano (writer of the comic strip Sally Forth) presents The Catalog of Unfit Toys, mixed in among many other random amusements and strange humor at the blog for his webcomic Medium Large (oh yeah, and there's a cat: cat poetry, that is - parts 1, 2, 3). [more inside]