Malia and Sasha, eight years ago on a cold November day, we greeted you on the steps of the White House. We saw both the light and wariness in your eyes as you gazed at your new home. We left our jobs in Baltimore and New York early and traveled to Washington to show you around. To show you the Lincoln Bedroom, and the bedrooms that were once ours, to introduce you to all the people—the florists, the grounds-keepers and the butlers—who dedicate themselves to making this historic house a home.George W. Bush's daughters Barbara Bush and Jenna Bush-Hager write an open letter to the Obama sisters.
All of our efforts to be more productive backfire – and only make us feel even busier and more stressed. [SLGuardian]
"For reminding America that demagoguery feeds on despair and that truth is only as powerful as the trust in those who speak it, for empowering a hidden electorate by mainstreaming its furies and live-streaming its fears, and for framing tomorrow’s political culture by demolishing yesterday’s, Donald Trump is Time Magazine's 2016 Person of the Year." [more inside]
As you look to the end 2016, you might think of New Years Eve celebrations, including the iconic Times Square Ball, "probably the greatest single moment of public timekeeping in the world." Digging in, you'll find that it's really just a glorified time ball, an antiquated tool for sea-farers to set their chronometers and discern their longitude by means of celestial navigation. The first time ball went into use 1829, pretty late in the time-keeping game, so let's re-fill the ol' water clock and take this way back. [more inside]
Who Are the Real ‘Killer Clowns’ Terrorizing America? Insane Clown Posse weighs in on the most pressing issue in America today. (Autoplay audio)
No, Alan Moore Isn't a Recluse [Publishers Weekly] “Speaking in intimidatingly long and thoughtful sentences, Moore is affable, relaxed, and eager to talk about his new novel, Jerusalem [Amazon], to be published in September by Norton’s Liveright imprint in the U.S. and Knockabout in the U.K. It’s a 600,000-word opus that has been lurking, Cthulhu-like, behind his last decade of work. Remixing the most-reader-challenging tricks of writers such as James Joyce, Roland Barthes, and Mark Z. Danielewski, Jerusalem is an astonishing collection of words and ideas that weaves a hypnotic spell.” [Previously] [Previously] [more inside]
Henri Bergson was one of the most celebrated philosophers of the early 20th century, and his very public conflict with Albert Einstein over "the nature of time" was considered the reason that Einstein's 1921 Nobel Prize was NOT awarded specifically for his Theory of Relativity. Ouch.
Chronas is a history project linking Wikipedia and Wikidata that lets you use a time slider at the bottom to see how the world looked any given date during the past 2000 years, watching realms grow and disappear. Video describing how it works. If you click on the countries/regions/empires shown, then it will show you the appropriate Wikipedia entry. [more inside]
After leading with a cover story criticizing Xi Jinping (otoh) The Economist has been censored in China; Time too and now Medium. [more inside]
Every clock at New York's Grand Central Station runs one minute fast by design. It's not an uncommon psychological trick: an informal poll of the Straight Dope message board turns up dozens of people who set their clocks 1, 15, or 30 minutes ahead to encourage punctuality and "create" more time. "The problem with this" (points out Crooked Timber) "is that if you’re half-way rational, you’ll correct for the error, making it useless. So the solution is to have a probabilistic clock, where the clock is fast, but you aren’t sure how fast it is within a given and relatively short time range." [more inside]
The Surprising History Behind Leap Year by Brian Handwerk [National Geographic]
The ancient Egyptians did it, and so do we. Here's how a leap day—which occurs Februrary 29—helps keep our calendars and societies in sync. It's that time again: This Monday, February 29, is a leap day, the calendar oddity that occurs (almost) every four years. For centuries, trying to sync calendars with the length of the natural year caused confusion—until the concept of leap year provided a way to make up for lost time.[more inside]
Trek at 50: The quest for a unifying theory of time travel in Star Trek by Xaq Rzetelny [Ars Technica] [more inside]
First broadcast on Feb 5th 1924, the BBC's Greenwitch Time Signal has collected some history. The pips have marked the hour with six (or seven) beeps for over 90 years. Sometimes the pips arrive on time, but the merely human announcers "crash the pips" by talking over them. Sometimes, the pips go missing entirely, throwing the BBC and its listeners off-kilter. In 2014, Radio 4 celebrated their 90th birthday in musical fashion. A short medley of announcers playing with, swearing at, and missing the pips (via). [more inside]
Today The Doomsday Clock will have its time recalibrated. In 2015 the scientists set the hands to 23.57 - "due to climate change, the modernization of nuclear weapons in the United States and Russia, and the problem of nuclear waste." Is the apocalypse closer or further away? Watch the result live at 13.30 EST. There's really only one way it can go.
Wow -- New Year's Day again already? Didn't we just do this? Why does time seem to speed up as we get older? Brian Resnick at Vox provides some food for thought.
The Tail End: "No matter what your age, you may, without realizing it, be enjoying the very last chapter of some of the relationships that matter most to you." (via) [more inside]
Chancellor of the Free World. "German chancellor Angela Merkel, whose leadership has helped preserve and promote an open, borderless Europe in the face of economic turmoil and an ongoing refugee crisis, is TIME’s 2015 Person of the Year." [more inside]
The collection is helping to solve a slew of scientific and societal puzzles — not least, a paradox about modern life. There is a widespread perception in Western countries that life today is much busier than it once was, thanks to the unending demands of work, family, chores, smartphones and e-mails. But the diaries tell a different story: “We do not get indicators at all that people are more frantic,” says John Robinson, a sociologist who works with time-use diaries at the University of Maryland, College Park. In fact, when paid and unpaid work are totted up, the average number of hours worked every week has not changed much since the 1980s in most countries of the developed world.
The time expert looked through the messy time diaries I'd been keeping (one mysteriously went through the dryer) and found 27 hours of what he called leisure, and I called bits and scraps of garbagey time. Five minutes here. Ten minutes there. Listening to the radio, exhausted, trying to get out of bed. Getting some exercise. Waiting by the side of the road for a tow truck. (Yes, he said that counted as leisure.) The image that came to mind was this: time confetti.
When you’re alone in a cabin in the Alaskan wilderness, the simplest question becomes the most complicated: How do you fill a day?
Herschell Gordon Lewis is best known for being a legend of gory schlock horror, but his resume also included two children's films. Of the two, the 'best worst' is the earlier by one year: Jimmy the Boy Wonder, featuring a low-budget Land-of-Oz-with-the-numbers-filed-off, a bizarre villain named Mr. Fig and a lengthy sequence of poorly-dubbed possibly-European animation. The other, The Magic Land of Mother Goose (aka Santa Visits the Magic Land of Mother Goose - guess who never appears in the film?), was the result of Lewis being hired to shoot a vehicle for a magician entirely on a high school stage. Both films are available for purchase from Something Weird Video (parts of site NSFW) as downloads and DVD-Rs.
Explore the deepest mysteries at the frontier of fundamental physics, and the most promising ideas put forth to solve them. A map of the frontier of fundamental physics built by interactive developer Emily Fuhrman.
"I suspect that the way I feel now, at summer's end, is about how I'll feel at the end of my life, assuming I have time and mind enough to reflect: bewildered by how unexpectedly everything turned out, regretful about all the things I didn't get around to, clutching the handful of friends and funny stories I've amassed, and wondering where it all went. And I'll probably still be evading the same truth I'm evading now: that the life I ended up with, much as I complain about it, was pretty much the one I chose. And my dissatisfactions with it are really my own character, with my hesitation and timidity." (slNYT)
"Erik, photojournalist, and I have come here to try and get the measure of this place. Nevada is the uncanny locus of disparate monuments all concerned with charting deep time, leaving messages for future generations of human beings to puzzle over the meaning of: a star map, a nuclear waste repository and a clock able to keep time for 10,000 years—all of them within a few hours drive of Las Vegas through the harsh desert." -- Built For Eternity, Elmo Keep on structures designed to potentially outlast human civilization. (Motherboard)
400 Years - a browser game that uses time as a gameplay mechanic as you play a stone idol racing to stop a looming disaster (via Gamefilter).
Why Time Flies: A visualization by Maximilian Kiener of philosopher Paul Janet's theory of why time seems to pass more quickly as one gets older. As Wonkblog explains it, The apparent length of a period of time is proportional to our life span itself.
Radio broadcasts leave Earth at the speed of light. Scroll away from Earth and hear how far the biggest hits of the past have travelled. The farther away you get, the longer the waves take to travel there—and the older the music you’ll hear.
Dr. Farid Fata, a prominent cancer doctor in Michigan, admitted in court to intentionally and wrongfully diagnosing healthy people with cancer. Fata also admitted to giving them chemotherapy drugs for the purpose of making a profit. The cancer doctor’s guilty plea shocked many in the courtroom, according to The Detroit Free Press. Fata owned Michigan Hematology Oncology, which had multiple offices throughout Detroit’s suburbs.One of the more horrifying crimes I've heard of. You're welcome. [more inside]
The headlines are exciting: "Clocks to read 11:59:60 as time lords add leap second" and "Global markets spooked by looming 'leap second'," as June 30, 2015 will be extended for one second to keep Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) close to the mean solar time, or UT1 because the Earth is constantly undergoing a deceleration caused by the braking action of the tides. So why are markets bracing for trouble and some suggesting you avoid air travel at that time? There are always a few more bugs to work out, as seen when the extra second "crashed the web" in 2012, and global outage of computerised check-in systems used by Qantas and Virgin Australia. [more inside]
"For those who love books, but don’t have enough time for reading. Here are the best books you can read in under an hour each." 24 books to read in under an hour (infographic) by Piotr Kowalczyk at Ebook Friendly. (via Electric Literature) Previously: What to read when pressed for time
Whether it’s two female prisoners competing to see who can coax the most orgasms out of their fellow inmates in Netflix’s Orange Is the New Black or a good, old-fashioned kiss-and-cut-away on ABC’s Scandal—the way intimacy is shown on the small screen has come a long way since 1952 when CBS forbade Lucille Ball from calling herself “pregnant” on national TV, substituting instead the priest-approved word “expecting.”
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At the tone the time will be...
At the tone the time will be...
The Network Time Protocol provides a foundation to modern computing. So why does NTP's support hinge so much on the shaky finances of one 59-year-old developer?
"I am waiting for my baby, waiting for summer, waiting for knowledge, but the waiting itself becomes the knowledge and then, even as I am so hungry for transition I am practically clawing out of my skin, I begin to mourn and maybe to fear the fading of this particular consciousness: the Zen state, the acid trip of gestation, and its changed relationship to time."
Inspired by recent research on how boredom and mind-wandering contribute to creativity, public radio show New Tech City is launching a pro-boredom project. Bored and Brilliant invites participants to track how they use their phones to prevent moments of mental idleness, to try to reclaim free brain space and find oases of time, complete a week of creativity challenges, and contribute their responses to the conversation. BrainPickings' Maria Popova and artist Nina Katchadourian (who both joined the project's launch party to talk about how they"owe their careers" to boredom)and RadioLab's Jad Abumrad.
Chronodex is a personal time management system developed by Patrick Ng that naturally matches the clock. It's free! Here's the printable 2015(a) edition sized for Traveler's Notebooks [more inside]
The most colorful clock/time-waster that'll brighten up your day, albeit slowly: What Colour Is It?