July 25

May We Haveth One’s Attention

This year's British Airways Safety Video alludes to period dramas and literature in various eras.
posted by needled at 11:32 AM - 0 comments

Charts and tables, pyramids and grids, circles, wheels, and globes

Color, with all its attendant theories, is one of the most basic components of art-making. Humankind has been preoccupied with its development and analysis for millennia, refracting it into a veritable spectrum of charts that articulate its practice. Whether you’re looking for the key to Paul Klee’s evocative interplay of line and color, curious about the ancestors of modern paint swatches at Lowe’s, or even searching for a captivating hue to inject into your next work of art, three new books give new meaning to the phrase “full color” by guiding us through its fascinating history. from The Delightfully Saturated History of Color Charts [Hyperallergic]
posted by chavenet at 11:20 AM - 0 comments

The Economic Weapon

“The mentality, almost a weird reflex, in Washington has just become: If something bad happens, anywhere in the world, the U.S. is going to sanction some people. And that doesn’t make sense. We don’t think about the collateral damage of sanctions the same way we think about the collateral damage of war. But we should.” From the Washington Post: How Four US Presidents Unleashed Economic Warfare Across the Globe.
posted by mittens at 9:31 AM - 10 comments

Mind The Snap!

UK train buff Geoff Marshall & friends have built a giant LEGO London Tube Map with working trains at the London Transport Museum Depot. Previously.
posted by ericthegardener at 8:32 AM - 11 comments


“It’s important that aquatic deoxygenation be added to the list of Planetary Boundaries,” said Rose. “This will help support and focus global monitoring, research, and policy efforts to help our aquatic ecosystems and, in turn, society at large.” Across all aquatic ecosystems, from streams and rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and ponds to estuaries, coasts, and the open ocean, dissolved oxygen (DO) concentrations have rapidly and substantially declined in recent decades. [rensselaer polytechnic] [more inside]
posted by HearHere at 8:22 AM - 7 comments

He photographed what he saw as instruments of the alleged crime: Books

Inside the two-year fight to bring charges against school librarians in Granbury, Texas An 824-page investigative file offers a visceral picture of an officer’s attempt to prosecute librarians amid a nationwide movement to criminalize books.
posted by bq at 5:39 AM - 45 comments

Where women's stories stop

Moira Donegan, creator of the Shitty Media Men list, reviews and reflects on Christine Blasey Ford's memoir One Way Back, for Bookforum: "There are two ways to explain the moral wrong presented by Kavanaugh’s confirmation...Ford saw it the second way: she thought Kavanaugh wasn’t suited for the Court because what he did to her meant he wasn’t good enough for it. Perhaps her most revealing and tragic mistake is that she assumed that other people would agree. [more inside]
posted by warriorqueen at 4:58 AM - 16 comments

«Reconquista», a tendentious and simplistic concept

Al-Andalus y la Historia [English] focuses on the history of Muslim Iberia/al-Andalus/Andalusia c. 711-1609. A public-facing site, it features accessible articles by scholars working on the region and sprang from a topical 2016 seminar. Sample articles cover new research on and approaches to Vikings in al-Andalus and the Maghreb, the Reconquista, and El Cid Campeador.
posted by cupcakeninja at 4:40 AM - 10 comments

Cole Escola's smash B'way play, "Oh Mary"

Cole Escola explains the inspiration for his new smash hit play "Oh Mary" to Seth Meyers. Cole plays an alcoholic Mary Todd Lincoln who yearns to be a cabaret star. Little does she realize she's merely a beard for her gay husband, Abraham, who has a half Filipino lover on the down-low. Belly laughs and pratfalls ensue. Tickets are hard to get btw. [more inside]
posted by Czjewel at 3:42 AM - 14 comments

Google Search now has exclusivity to index Reddit

Adding "site:reddit.com" to a Google search took an uptick in the past 18 months, as search result quality dwindled to keep eyeballs viewing search results (previously, previously, previouslier), and now 404 Media report that Reddit articles from the past 7 days are exclusively available to Google searches. [more inside]
posted by k3ninho at 1:08 AM - 33 comments

Wildfires ravage UNESCO World Heritage site, Jasper National Park Canada

UNESCO World Heritage site, Canada’s Jasper National Park in the Rocky Mountains, was evacuated Monday night due to wildfires. Thousands of residents and visitors to the park were displaced overnight. As of 6 pm (MDT) this evening, the fire has now reached the townsite of Jasper, causing massive structural damage to many of the town’s buildings, including the historic Jasper Park Lodge.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 12:41 AM - 17 comments

A process politicians, promoters and media habitually attempt to incite

Stories of threats to our families and our homes seem to spread like proverbial wildfires. As scholars Angela McRobbie and Sarah L. Thornton noted more than two decades ago, this breathless state depends on, or even springs from, media engagement with these alleged dangers. Moral panics “guarantee the kind of emotional involvement that keeps up the interest of, not just tabloid, but broadsheet newspaper readers, as well as the ratings of news and true crime television, [and] even the media themselves are willing to take some of the blame.” Once an unintentional outcome of broadcasting the daily news, moral panics now seem to be the point of the news cycle. If McRobbie and Thornton’s assessment is accurate, how can we as media consumers sort the danger from the drama? ... The scholarship featured here highlights lessons from the past to help us detect patterns and language in the present. from Moral Panics: A Syllabus [JSTOR] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 12:19 AM - 5 comments

July 24

A trillion rogue planets and not one sun to shine on them

Inside the race to track down our galaxy’s hidden, untethered worlds. "Not only do rogue planets outnumber visible stars, they probably also outnumber conventional planets like Earth, the ones that orbit their own suns and bask happily in their warmth. If anything, worlds like ours are the outliers. The tremendous abundance of the rogues implies that the process of planet formation is extremely messy, with many worlds getting kicked into the void almost as soon as they take shape. Lots of potentially habitable planets probably end up cold and desolate as a result. Then again, some exobiologists, who search for life outside Earth, speculate that certain types of rogue planets could become roving ambassadors, ferrying life across interstellar space."
posted by brambleboy at 10:25 PM - 18 comments

Drones & tourists offer new insights on rare subspecies of blue whale

How drones and tourists offer new insights on a rare subspecies of blue whale. Little was known about the behaviour of the pygmy blue whale, but research that has utilised tourist footage and drones is shining a new light on their activities in waters north of Australia.
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries at 9:09 PM - 0 comments

Like the memory of a CRT

The Sentinel project is completed. The French artist Marine, aka moonovermarine, has recently completed a beautiful series of 14 embroideries inspired by the video game "The Sentinel" (1986), previously mentioned in MetaFilter. This work of over two years looks fantastic, with a luminous atmosphere and a magnificent rendering of pixels. The color palette is faithful to the game's chromatic range of the ZX Spectrum version.
posted by verylazyminer at 11:55 AM - 9 comments

A walking encyclopaedia of US & English blues & a musical trailblazer

It is with heavy hearts that we bear the news that John Mayall passed away peacefully in his California home yesterday, July 22, 2024, surrounded by loving family. Health issues that forced John to end his epic touring career have finally led to peace for one of this world’s greatest road warriors. John Mayall gave us ninety years of tireless efforts to educate, inspire and entertain. [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 11:17 AM - 27 comments

"I, as the son of a perpetrator, am not allowed to let this pass."

My family and other Nazis. [more inside]
posted by rory at 7:18 AM - 26 comments

The War Over Safe Drug Supply in Vancouver

With advocates on both sides framing their positions in terms of absolute right and wrong, it has become nearly impossible to have a nuanced conversation. (slMacLeans)
posted by Kitteh at 7:14 AM - 9 comments

Scientists discover high levels of cocaine in Brazilian sharpnose sharks

Scientists discover high levels of cocaine in Brazilian sharpnose sharks. Sharks off the coast of Rio de Janerio have tested positive for cocaine, but it is not known how it affects their behaviour.
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries at 6:20 AM - 42 comments

An inside look at the shifting risks to safe abortion providers

As abortion pills cross state and federal borders, they also cross conceptual boundaries, shifting in status between legal and illegal. Any drug can acquire the label of a fake or falsified product, not because of problems in manufacturing but because of irregularities in packaging, distribution, regulatory authority, and mobility. Depending on its geography and the logistics of its journey, the same medicine can be considered licit or illicit, inexpensive or costly, even safe or dangerous. The Buyer, The Seller, The CEO, The Activist. Sydney Calkin for The Baffler (archive.org link)
posted by bq at 6:14 AM - 2 comments

Daily bunny no.2559 steals from the rich

Will Quinn posts daily bunnies over on BlueSky, also posting them to his website, Instagram, and (not so much anymore on) Twitter. Quinn also does comics. [more inside]
posted by cupcakeninja at 4:41 AM - 11 comments

Transient messages for strangers

Dear Next Visitor There is a message waiting that has been written just for you...
posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 2:41 AM - 30 comments

James C. Scott (1936-2024)

James C. Scott, noted anthropologist and author dies after "having suffered from heart and kidney failures, Maung Hmek had decided to pull the plug on himself, declining dialysis and other medical interventions, but he was still following Myanmar affairs" (Remembering Maung Hmek aka Shwe Yoe aka James C. Scott) [more inside]
posted by kmt at 1:49 AM - 22 comments

Like a BMW Isetta for the 21st century

The microlino [wiki] is a cute little electric bubble car from Micro Mobility Systems [wiki] of kickscooter [img] fame. But is it any good? Why not watch a YouTube review from Aging Wheels, Fully Charged (and again) or The Late Brake Show to see what they have to say about it?
posted by Dysk at 1:37 AM - 23 comments

All he wanted was to be regarded as a man

Readers with an intimate experience of oppression and cruelty have often responded sympathetically to Fanon’s insistence on the psychological value of violence for the colonized. In a 1969 essay, the philosopher Jean Améry, a veteran of the Belgian anti-fascist resistance and a Holocaust survivor, wrote that Fanon described a world that he knew very well from his time in Auschwitz. What Fanon understood, Améry argued, was that the violence of the oppressed is “an affirmation of dignity,” opening onto a “historical and human future.” That Fanon, who never belonged anywhere in his lifetime, has been claimed by so many as a revolutionary brother—indeed, as a universal prophet of liberation—is an achievement he might have savored. from The revolutionary lives of Frantz Fanon by Adam Schatz [Coda.] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 12:12 AM - 3 comments

Weapon of Choice

St Wilfrid's Catholic School in Crawley have produced an end of year video featuring their headmaster - a faithful shot by shot remake of Fatboy Slim's Weapon of Choice. There's even a side-by side comparison.
posted by jontyjago at 12:06 AM - 22 comments

July 23

Decapitated but still dangerous: How a dead snake can still bite

Decapitated but still dangerous: How a dead snake can still cause a lethal bite. A snake doesn't have to be alive to bite and kill you. So how can this be, and how long can they remain dangerous after they've wriggled off this mortal coil?
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries at 7:13 PM - 19 comments


'When they discovered oxygen 13,000 feet underwater, in areas so dark that photosynthesis would be impossible, they initially thought their equipment had malfunctioned. Eventually, they came to suspect the polymetallic nodules were a source of this “dark” oxygen.' [yale environment 360] [more inside]
posted by HearHere at 7:06 PM - 5 comments

Learn something every day

Would you like to learn how to play the board game Go? This website is visually appealing, simple to use, and easy to understand. You will start with explanations of the fundamental rules of the game and progress through basic beginner play using interactive puzzles.
posted by bq at 2:22 PM - 16 comments

Bernice Johnson Reagon (1942-2024)

"It is impossible to separate freedom struggles from song." Bernice Johnson Reagon, founder of the Freedom Singers and acclaimed music group Sweet Honey in the Rock, is among the ancestors now. What a tremendous legacy she leaves behind. [more inside]
posted by TwoStride at 1:29 PM - 30 comments

Ted Hughes never went shopping with Sylvia Plath

True knowledge and life cannot, of course, be quantifiable, and Plath did not live by simply numbering her days and ways—intellectual, social, and sexual. No biography, without a narrative, can succeed. Neither Plath nor her biographers have considered her life as just one damn thing after another. But when the numbers drop out of narrative, avoiding the tedium of indexing a life, something is also lost. from From Shopping to Sex: Indexing the Life of Sylvia Plath [LitHub] [more inside]
posted by chavenet at 11:28 AM - 8 comments

It looks a bit like a large spliff...

As the Olympic games draw near, it is announced that the torch will soon be carried by Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr., professionally known as Snoop Dogg. Since leaving Greece in late April, the torch has jaunted around France in the build-up to the games. The torch will also be transported by an unusually long rowing boat, but it's still not widely known who (perhaps a MeFite) will be lighting the cauldron.
posted by Wordshore at 5:12 AM - 36 comments

Issues related to octopus and crab welfare have been neglected

"Prof Birch’s team found that there was strong evidence that these creatures were sentient in that they could experience feelings of pain, pleasure, thirst, hunger, warmth, joy, comfort and excitement. The conclusions led to the government including these creatures into its Animal Welfare (Sentience) Act in 2022." [more inside]
posted by cupcakeninja at 4:48 AM - 21 comments

A shared tendency to explain art w/ minimal reference to the art itself

It is strange to hear of a subject needing to be restored to the discipline that claims to study it. But it’s characteristic of an age when literary discourse is in flight from the literary, in favor of the personal, the political, or, more often, the consumerist and careerist, in favor of thinking about systems instead of individuals, which is to say writers. At the conjuncture of these tendencies is another set of institutions perpetually said to be in crisis – because of the public’s failure to read enough books; because of questionable business decisions; because of the threat of new technologies to books themselves; or simply because of the rising costs of paper – that is, the publishing industry. from Literature Without Literature by Christian Lorentzen [Granta; ungated]
posted by chavenet at 12:19 AM - 6 comments

July 22

At a Tasmanian restaurant, diners can barter home veggies for meals

At a Tasmanian restaurant, diners can barter home veggies for restaurant meals in regenerative tourism model. An armful of salad greens in exchange for a restaurant dinner is what's on offer for local backyard growers at a northern Tasmanian hub where ultra seasonal is the fare.
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries at 10:04 PM - 7 comments

MefaTilter™ — Your Favorite Fictional Brand Sucks!

The Fictional Brands Archive's searchable index—clickable through to any entry. Some research behind it. And finally the info page: where you can/will submit those fictional brands you know are not yet represented in the archive.
posted by not_on_display at 9:54 PM - 27 comments

The unlawfully occupying apartheid state of--

Kenneth Roth writes for the Guardian: The ICJ has demolished Israel’s claims that it is not occupying Palestinian territories - "the court held that for legal purposes, occupation is the product of a military takeover of land, regardless of its status. Even Gaza has long been occupied, the court found, despite Israel’s 2005 disengagement, because Israel maintained authority over various aspects of life in Gaza that could be exercised when it wished." || Al-Jazeera: Can Palestinians expect changes after ICJ ruling on Israel’s occupation? & ‘Impunity must end’: World reacts to ICJ ruling against Israeli occupation || Haaretz: Israel to Give [Its] Top Court Supplementary Arguments on How ICJ Ruling Will Affect Gaza Aid || Marko Milanovic in European Journal of International Law's blog: The bottom line of the AO is that the Court found that Israel’s continued occupation of the OPT violates various rules of international law, and that Israel has to withdraw from the OPT as rapidly as possible – but there are many other findings of the Court, including with regard to the obligations of third states, that merit discussion. [more inside]
posted by cendawanita at 9:19 PM - 31 comments

Voter Fraud at the Hugos

No strangers to controversy (previously: sad puppies for a few years, self-censorship last year), the Hugo Awards have been hit again, this time by fraudulent voting. According to Glasgow 2024 Hugo Admin, nearly 10% of the votes cast were not by “natural persons.” Read or listen to the full statement.
posted by goatdog at 3:01 PM - 98 comments

Could I use this while turned on?

When working on Buttplug applications, something that should be at the forefront of your design thinking is: Someone is going to fuck this. The context of this usage should influence all levels of design, from UI/UX to low level code decisions. Assuming the user will approach a piece of software that involves Buttplug in the same way they would, say, a word processor, will end up in a fuckable word processor. If that's what you were aiming for, great, but otherwise this will just end up in a frustrated user and something that looked like a cat walked across the keyboard. from Butts Are Difficult (in The Buttplug.io Developer Guide) [Probably NSFW]
posted by chavenet at 11:10 AM - 52 comments

Ice Ice Baby

Just because the weather is unbearbly hot (in the Northern Hemisphere) doesn't mean you should go without dessert. Let's look at the magic of the "Icebox Cake" introduced to the US in the 1920's and a staple of summer time for decades to come. Skip the oven and eat your cake too. [more inside]
posted by drewbage1847 at 10:59 AM - 30 comments

A Couple of Woodworking Layout Tools

Do you need to make some dovetails joints but aren't sure how many dovetails to use or what angle would look best? Do you want to make a stick chair but want to visualize your design first? layout.computer has what you need! [more inside]
posted by jedicus at 9:46 AM - 9 comments

At the typewriter you find out who you are.

YouTube User Lyn Johansen on her channel, "This Typewriter is Broken," takes us through her typewriter collection and discusses the authors who used the same model.
Videos about twenty minutes long [more inside]
posted by thatwhichfalls at 9:40 AM - 5 comments

"To be real, much of the internet assumes, is to complain."

Yelp's Affect on Restaurants and Everything Else [more inside]
posted by Kitteh at 9:26 AM - 74 comments

Kamala Harris re-energizes U.S. presidential campaign

A guide to the coming attacks on Kamala Harris. The frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination quickly raised over $50 million in small donations on her first day as a presidential candidate and has consolidated endorsements from many of the folks thought to be potential rivals for the nomination, including Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
posted by mediareport at 8:14 AM - 1173 comments

Queerness, Monstrosity, and Frankenstein

From C. E. McGill: "Both Victor and the monster die at the end of Frankenstein, fading tragically into the arctic sunset, but I couldn’t bear to do the same to Mary. Perhaps (despite my love of tragic queer horror), it would have felt in this case too close to burying my gays; perhaps I simply felt that, after all her hard work, Mary deserved more. Whatever the case, it felt right – like a love letter, almost, to myself and to all the other unnatural creatures out there – to give her a happy ending. In the words of Frankenstein, “It is true, we shall be monsters, cut off from all the world; but on that account we shall be more attached to one another.”" [more inside]
posted by cupcakeninja at 5:32 AM - 5 comments

You got your NIN in my Funkytown

What would happen if Trent Reznor had been transported to 1979? Probably not this, but it’s pretty amusing. SLYT.
posted by bq at 5:22 AM - 16 comments

How ABC Australia made 2 hours of TV about an ancient true crime mystery

How ABC Australia made two hours of TV about an ancient true crime mystery. From filming in some of the most remote and inhospitable areas of Australia, to working with an A-list Hollywood actor, this is how the ABC Science team investigated what killed our ancient megafauna.
posted by chariot pulled by cassowaries at 4:45 AM - 5 comments

The unforgettable sound ... and it's also your Free Thread

Describe, recollect, or muse upon, a significant sound or voice in your life - heard regularly, or just once, or historically in some way. Perhaps the first time you heard your partner or child, a piece of music, birdsong, a TV theme, a sound from a movie, or a sound or voice on a memorable trip, anything which has stuck in your mind ... Or write about whatever is on your mind, in your heart, on your plate or in your journal, because this is your weekly free thread. [Recentish]
posted by Wordshore at 12:00 AM - 105 comments

July 21

Neither utopian nor dystopian, but open to radically weird possibilities

What is today called “artificial intelligence” should be counted as a Copernican Trauma in the making. It reveals that intelligence, cognition, even mind (definitions of these historical terms are clearly up for debate) are not what they seem to be, not what they feel like, and not unique to the human condition. Obviously, the creative and technological sapience necessary to artificialize intelligence is a human accomplishment, but now, that sapience is remaking itself. Since the paleolithic cognitive revolution, human intelligence has artificialized many things — shelter, heat, food, energy, images, sounds, even life itself — but now, that intelligence itself is artificializable. from The Five Stages Of AI Grief by Benjamin Bratton [Noema; ungated]
posted by chavenet at 11:59 PM - 52 comments

DashCon at 10: I single-handedly destroyed fandom culture?

I was 15. I had been to three conventions. One of them was a rabbit convention.
posted by one for the books at 11:26 PM - 13 comments

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