California Restricts Voting Machines
: after a source code review
voting machines turned up
"significant, deeply-rooted security weaknesses"
in voting machines by Diebold, Hart, and Sequoia, the California Secretary of
State decertified all three vendors' systems. These weaknesses have been well
covered here at MeFi
, but some are bad enough to shock even the
, including the revelation that Diebold "uses at least two
hard-coded passwords -- one is 'diebold' and another is the eight-byte
." Time to think about open voting
posted by jacobian
on Aug 5, 2007 -
Virtual Space Mountain
! Wheeeee! (Click on the second video where you sit in front. What are you, a wuss?)
Real video just can't
do Space Mountain justice, but it does a pretty good job of capturing some other rides. Feel like revisiting some original Magic Kingdom rides without leaving home? Well here you go... Pirates
, Mr. Toad
, Small World
, Haunted Mansion
, Tiki Room
, Thunder Mountain
, Star Tours
, Indiana Jones
, Alice in Wonderland
, The Jungle Cruise
, Roger Rabbit
, the late Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse
and a bunch of people covered in lightbulbs dancing to the world's most excruciatingly annoying synthesized music
. During your virtual day at the park, please just remember to watch out for Goofy. That dude is nothing but a messed up troublemaker
. And don't forget... the parking trams do not go to aisles B as in Bambi & C as in Cinderella.
posted by miss lynnster
on Mar 26, 2007 -
Jonson takes pictures of The Salton Sea,
which is a strange place
, like some kind of huge, perpetual, Burning Man
, but by a huge, salty, polluted, manmade lake
with distant shores
, dying fish
, has-been resort towns
, Salvation Mountain
, fundie dinos
, fountains of youth
, and nice churches
. [via mefi projects] [previously] [howdy]
posted by brownpau
on Jan 30, 2007 -
The Near Real Time Simulation of Southern California Seismic Events Portal. Earthquake animations from Caltech.
"These movies are the results of simulations carried out on a large computer cluster. Earthquake movies will be available for download approximately 45 mins after the occurrence of a quake of magnitude 3.5 or greater.
posted by thatwhichfalls
on Aug 9, 2006 -
Prudhoe Bay oil production shut down.
A large percentage of the largest major oil field in the US will be shut down, possibly for months, on news that the transfer pipelines which move the oil to the main Trans-Alaska Pipeline are badly corroded. [more inside...]
posted by zoogleplex
on Aug 7, 2006 -
Tabloid photographs from the Los Angeles Herald Express (1936-1961), showing celebrities
, (early) CHiPs
, and babes with guns
Via the Virtual Gallery
at the LA Public Library, which has many other fine exhibits, such as California in the 20s
, the 1932 Olympics
, celebrity golf
, and a wonderful collection from the golden age of travel posters
posted by Gamblor
on Jul 28, 2006 -
"It's filthy. It's toxic. But it's water. And as we know in California, people are fighting over it."
It's North America’s most polluted river, made up of 70% waste material and raw sewage. The New River
, which starts in Mexicali, Mexico, flows past homes in the California border town of Calexico and winds up in the Salton Sea. The river contains a nightmare stew
of about 100 biological contaminants, volatile organic compounds, heavy metals, and pesticides including: DDT, PCB, selenium, uranium, arsenic and mercury. The scary part? It's enough water for about 300,000 homes. Filthy or not, that’s real water. So L.A.’s Metropolitan Water District has filed a claim
on New River water.
posted by thisisdrew
on Jul 6, 2006 -
was an American jazz/hard rock/psychedelic band founded in 1967, based in Los Angeles, California. Their 1970 album Twelve Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus
is highly regarded for originality and uniqueness and is considered by many to be one of the best albums made by a Los Angeles group [source
]. Among the many bits of fascinating rock trivia surrounding the group: founder and frontman Randy California jammed with a pre-fame Jimi Hendrix
Curious fans can also peruse unofficial sites for original members and founders Randy California
and Jay Ferguson
posted by joe lisboa
on Jul 3, 2006 -
The Jackie Robinson of architecture.
An orphaned African American boy from downtown Los Angeles, Paul Revere Williams
wanted to be an architect, and when he mentioned his career goal the high school guidance counselor ”stared at me with as much astonishment as he would have had I proposed a rocket flight to Mars... Whoever heard of a Negro being an architect?
”. Therefore, Williams learned to read and draw upside down -- he knew that white clients would not sit next to him -- graduated from USC
and in 1924 became the first certified African American architect west of the Mississippi. In a 50-year long extraordinary career,
he designed landmarks like the Theme restaurant
at Los Angeles International Airport
(with Welton Becket
), the LA County Courthouse
, the Hollywood YMCA
, Saks Fifth Avenue
in Beverly Hills
, restored the Beverly Hills Hotel. Some of his most interesting buildings, like the La Concha Motel
in Las Vegas
have either been razed
to the ground
or, like the "Batman house
", aka 160 S San Rafael mansion
in Pasadena, have been destroyed by fire. Now, Williams' historic Morris Landau House
has been cut into 21 separate pieces
and sits in a Santa Clarita storage yard, rotting away
. More inside.
posted by matteo
on Jul 2, 2006 -
login firstname.lastname@example.org, password fleeble) That is the percentage of students in UCLA's incoming freshman class that self-identify as black. Only 96 students in an entering class of 4,852, and the lowest percentage since 1973. Many believe Proposition 209
is to blame, but some
want to stop collecting this data altogether.
posted by fugitivefromchaingang
on Jun 8, 2006 -
What’s a dog worth?
Los Angeles kills more animals in its shelters than any other metropolitan area in the United States. For that to change, we will have to figure out what to do with the pets none of us want.
posted by PenguinBukkake
on May 13, 2006 -
Rivers of Light
Hypnotic night-time helicopter shots, floating over downtown LA offices and highways. From Grass Collective. Flash interface, so find your way to the fifth column from the left ('free downloads'). [Large (91MB, 146MB) zipped QT files - a smaller (12MB) sample here]
posted by carter
on Mar 23, 2006 -
Eighty years ago, William Mulholland
completed his final project: the St. Francis Dam,
which converted San Francisquito Canyon--about 5 miles northeast of what is now Santa Clarita, California
--into a 38,000 acre-foot reservoir for Los Angeles/Owens River aqueduct water.
You're probably familiar with Mulholland's name
--he designed and built the Los Angeles Aqueduct
and the beginning of the system with which Los Angeles is supplied water
from the Central Valley--and as a gesture of gratitude, the city named its most scenic highway
in his honor. Mulholland, the California Water Wars,
the aqueduct, and the dam were also referenced and alluded to extensively in Roman Polanski's Chinatown.
But the man
who helped build an immense metropolis by bringing water to the desert has only a small fountain
as a memorial to his legacy. Three minutes before midnight, on March 12, 1928...
posted by fandango_matt
on Mar 13, 2006 -
I first read "Ask the Dust" in 1971 when I was doing research for "Chinatown". I was concerned about the way people really sounded when they talked, and I was dissatisfied with everything else I had read that was written during the '30s. I wanted the real thing, as Henry James would say. When I picked up Fante's "Ask the Dust," I just knew that was the way those kids talked to each other—the rhythms, cadences, racism.
on adapting John Fante
's novel for the big screen
. More inside.
posted by matteo
on Mar 4, 2006 -
The Problem With Emily Dickenson
"On August 25, six students, along with their school, Calvary Chapel Christian School in Murrieta, California and the Association of Christian Schools International filed a federal lawsuit
against the University of California where, according to the LA Times (August 27), admissions officials have been accused of discriminating against high schools that teach creationism and other conservative Christian viewpoints." One of the textbooks used to teach literature has this to say about Mark Twain: "Twain's outlook was both self-centered and ultimately hopeless. Denying that he was created in the image of God, Twain was able to rid himself of feeling any responsibility to his Creator. "
posted by Secret Life of Gravy
on Nov 29, 2005 -
The Online Archive of California
brings together historical materials from a variety of state institutions
, including museums, historical societies, and archives. These materials include letters, legal documents, manuscripts, works of art, diaries, and historical photographs. Thousands of photographs
the Bancroft Library
at Berkeley: Artistic homes, 1887-1890
, agricultural laborers, 1906-1911
, the San Francisco earthquake and fire
, construction of the Golden Gate Bridge
, San Quentin Prison
, and war relocation camps
. And that's barely scratching the surface.
posted by Gamblor
on Oct 17, 2005 -
"I haven't been in a concert hall in 4 billion years".
Nathaniel Anthony Ayers, 54, had been excited about an invitation to see the Los Angeles Philharmonic
in action at Disney Hall
. "The anticipation is horrible". He'd started showering daily at a shelter, to gussy himself up as much as possible. Nathaniel was a music student more than 30 years ago at the Juilliard School
when he suffered a breakdown. Today, as he continues to battle the schizophrenia that landed him on skid row, he plays violin and cello for hours each day in downtown Los Angeles, lifting his instruments out of an orange shopping cart on which he has written: "Little Walt Disney Concert Hall — Beethoven." After the Philharmonic's rehearsal, Ayers has played Disney Hall -- the real one, this time. Without the bow at first, picking the strings with his right hand, Bach's Cello Suite No. 1: Prelude. Several Philharmonic staffers heard the music and wandered over, peering in to see a man of the streets, tattered and elegant, close his eyes and drift into ecstasy.
posted by PenguinBukkake
on Oct 9, 2005 -
Running on Fumes
-- a fascinating essay by the Nation's
Sasha Abramsky on what rising gas prices will do to poor exurban communities.
posted by digaman
on Oct 4, 2005 -