December 2006 Archives

December 31

Face Front, True Believer!

Polite Dissent rings in the new year with the best and worst in comic book medicine from 2006. While this entertaining blog's subjects are not limited to four color minutiae, it is the source of some of the most entertaining posts. Please to enjoy Flatlining, Hippocrates, Originitis, and the scourge of a generation, Metal-Eating Disease!
posted by EatTheWeek at 11:22 PM PST - 6 comments

For, it is not the center of all the revolutions.

Planetocopia - have some new planets for the New Year.
Future ones; tilted ones; wrong ones.
Plus instructions on how to make your own.
via Making Light.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 11:19 PM PST - 4 comments

Hendrix wildly wails Wales

A week before Jimi Hendrix died in London he (probably) recorded the Welsh anthem "Land of our Fathers" (embedded audio). The eight-track recording languished in a corner of a recording studio until recently.
posted by Rumple at 10:42 PM PST - 30 comments

Clever Print Ads from Around the Globe

Sandeep Makam is an advertising copywriter who lives in India - his Blog is called twenty-four, and it's devoted to displaying the most interesting global print advertising he runs across. A couple of my favorites so far include this Red Cross spot for the ongoing victims of Chernobyl (click on the images to get the full size), and this great bit of typographic fun. More favorites listed inside. Similar, previously.
posted by jonson at 9:23 PM PST - 8 comments

Bible video games

Should you make video games from Bible stories? Or can you have fun with with video games made from bible stories?
posted by bigmusic at 9:18 PM PST - 25 comments

Whatever comes of it...

Have a Godless New Year! We Wish you a Very Happy 2007!
posted by nj_subgenius at 8:38 PM PST - 27 comments

P-Funk. Uncut Funk. The Bomb.

The Awesome Power of a Fully Operational Mothership First, there comes the Brides, followed by stretchin' out with Casper the Holy Ghost and some Horny Horns. Next, with people standing on the verge, the Wizard of Woo opens the Maggot Brain. A devil-dance later, all are witnesses to The Landing. The recovery of funky stuff commences, and the mother is summarily turned out, with subsequent damage to the roof. (YouTube)
posted by LinusMines at 6:55 PM PST - 19 comments

You're not going to give me the umbrella, are you?

Sword swallowing and its side effects. The British Medical Journal goes for a bit of holiday levity. Sword swallowing, urethral umbrellas, and more. I am not a doctor, but I play one on screen.
posted by caddis at 6:33 PM PST - 5 comments

Let Me Take My Ride

The Wall of Death. Celebrated in song and art, the act of riding a motorcycle on the vertical wall of the inside of a cylinder, was a popular carnival attraction, mid-century. Although on the wane since the 70's, there are still a few practitioners, some of whom have better websites than others.
posted by Devils Rancher at 6:15 PM PST - 9 comments

“Allowing parents to select their children’s sexual orientation would further a parent’s freedom to raise the sort of children they want to raise.”

Cure for teh gay? I was relaxing in front of X-Men 3 when a friend mentioned that the United States "gay sheep" experiments were wrapping up (though not uneventfully), with considerable successes. Lesbian tennis champ Martina Navaratilova has been fighting to end the tests for some time, but it appears a "gay vaccine" for pregnant mothers may be inevitable. Meanwhile, the GOP's only gay congressman retires.
posted by mek at 2:51 PM PST - 294 comments

Bye bye, Neo-Samurai

“When I went to the bathroom there was a sign on the wall right in front of me saying: ‘ONE STEP FORWARD!.’ … I felt I needed to start something else.” Genki Sudo retires
posted by the cuban at 2:25 PM PST - 17 comments


-cognition, -data,, -ethics, -fiction, -film, -filter, -gaming, -joke, -language, -mathematics, -meta, -music, -physics, -sports, -talk, -television, -verse
posted by themadjuggler at 1:34 PM PST - 43 comments

Bannination of the Year

Truthiness Makes the Trifecta! As I predicted, the Classic Colbertism that won two Word of the Year awards has made it onto the 32nd L.S.S.U. List of Words and Phrases Banished from the Queen's English for Mis-Use, Over-Use and General Uselessness.
Other linguistic losers for 2007: "Awesome", "Gitmo", "chipotle", "undocumented alien*", "pwn", "search**" (effectively replaced by Google), "gone missing", "gone bad" (applied to things already bad, i.e. 'drug deal gone bad'), "ask your doctor***", "now playing in theaters" (Dept. of Redundancy Dept.) and "healthy food" (healthful is healthier), as well as shorthand couple names like "TomKat" (Would Bogart and Bacall have been "BogCall"?), "i-anything" (lucky for Apple they didn't get that 'iPhone' trademark), men saying "we're pregnant" and "boasts", as in 'boasts amenities'. (Previously)
posted by wendell at 1:13 PM PST - 65 comments

holiday sewage

After the holiday sweeties we ponder the age-old question: Can fish smell snickerdoodles?
posted by thirteenkiller at 1:11 PM PST - 5 comments

Travis Castillo's electronic music DJ and live PA archive.

A massive collection of live DJ and PA sets of electronic music sorted by year and genre. Enjoy.
(Coral Cache link. Please use this to help archive and propagate the files.)
posted by loquacious at 12:07 PM PST - 15 comments

Zvukovye Pis'ma

Zvukovye Pis'ma: Musical letters from the Soviet Union during the 1950s, with images and audio. More information for those that can decipher it.
posted by monju_bosatsu at 11:34 AM PST - 4 comments

Happy New Year

So you can sing along this evening. Happy New Year from Glasgow where our Hogmanay event has been cancelled due to storms.
posted by bobbyelliott at 11:04 AM PST - 11 comments

Ring in the New Year!

A first-person history of a men's fisting club and some of the music that played there - from the golden age of gay free love and radical sexuality.
Susie Bright on leading a lesbian fisting workshop way back in the 80s.
Step-by-step instructions for anal and vaginal fisting and a longer book on the topic Summed up here by Dan Savage.
(Previously: Christian Fisting!) (Every link is utterly, completely NOT work safe)
posted by serazin at 9:12 AM PST - 165 comments

Americans see gloom, doom in 2007

Poll: Americans see gloom, doom in 2007. Another terrorist attack, a warmer planet, death and destruction from a natural disaster are predicted by most Americans. 35 percent predict the military draft will be reinstated and one in four, 25 percent, anticipates the second coming of Jesus Christ.
posted by stbalbach at 8:42 AM PST - 64 comments

Recording history by whatever is handy

The white man brought disease, war and...accounting ledgers. The Plains Indian warrior switched from previous art materials and used the ledgers to create Ledger Art to record the glory of the hunt and battles between tribes and against whites. But as the Native American life deteriorated, Ledger Art recorded a vanishing way of life and the dramatic change in their culture. Some of that art has been lost or fallen apart, but The Plains Indians Ledger Art Website exists to preserve the images for the future.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:24 AM PST - 16 comments

Bomb attack in Bangkok

Seven bombs rock Bangkok as the New Year's countdown begins. At least two are dead. Is it related to the recent coup? Some photos here.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 6:54 AM PST - 20 comments

All over this world

Tomorrow's stars today If I had a hammer podcast. School children all over the world are creating original podcasts. They make for fascinating and fun listening.
posted by asok at 5:37 AM PST - 6 comments

She's Such A Geek!

Back in 2005, they put out a call for submissions. The call was answered, and a book was published, the the world now knows that women can be geeks, too! "She's Such A Geek!"
posted by flapjax at midnite at 3:11 AM PST - 7 comments

Hard seat hell.

Chinese On The Train Wang Fuchun's exhibition at the 798 Photo Gallery. Some good stuff in their archives too.
posted by Abiezer at 2:50 AM PST - 4 comments

All things are joyful to a monkey

Mr Monkey's World of Hats! [Via.]
posted by homunculus at 12:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Death Valley Slideshow

Death Valley car trip photos including some panoramas of the racetrack and its mysterious stones, and cute kids. via
posted by hortense at 12:00 AM PST - 17 comments

December 30

Photoshop -3.0

"Tall-tale postcards emerged around the turn of the 20th century, when postcards came to function as surrogates for travel. People soon realized that postcards could be used to create or sustain a certain utopian myth about a town or region, and crafty photographers began to physically manipulate their photographs. Nowhere did these modified images, or "tall-tale postcards" as they came to be called, become more prevalent than in rural communities that hoped to forge an identity as places of agricultural abundance to encourage settlement and growth. Food sources specific to the region — vegetables, fruits, or fish — were the most common subjects."
posted by jonson at 8:46 PM PST - 20 comments

24 (Web) Ways of 2006

24 Ways - 2006 Edition This year's possibly useful 24 articles containing 24 tips and tutorials for those of us who love CSS and other related web development techniques. Last year's links are included too.
posted by juiceCake at 7:56 PM PST - 4 comments

I said that's Nothing you should hear me play piano

Liberace Dot Org For all Your Liberace related needs.
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:58 PM PST - 27 comments

U2, Paul McCartney, Pete Townsend Call For New Copyright Law

"U2, Kaiser Chiefs, Maximo Park and about 4,000 other bands have taken out a full page newspaper ad calling for the improvement of British copyright law. " wtf
posted by zouhair at 5:15 PM PST - 81 comments

Big Questions

Big Questions for 2007. The Guardian asks scientists, businesspeople, artists, activists, politicians, philosophers and others what they perceive to be the biggest issues in their respective fields. What do you think some of the big questions we'll be asking in the course of the next year?
posted by John of Michigan at 4:00 PM PST - 34 comments

"We are fed up with getting older. Why should we follow the fashion? Stop this mad race towards death."

Support FONACON in their protest against the year 2007.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 3:39 PM PST - 16 comments

Very Slowly

"To play this motif 840 times in succession, it would be advisable to prepare oneself beforehand, in the deepest silence, by serious immobilities." Erik Satie's Vexations (previously) was more-or-less disregarded as an unperformable thought experiment, until John Cage staged an eighteen-hour performance in 1963. The event cemented Satie's importance in avant-garde music and his influence on a generation of artists. In 2006, several musicians and artists performed their own renditions.
posted by roll truck roll at 2:00 PM PST - 17 comments

Saddam Saturday

It's Saddam Saturday! Besides the dearly departed dictator, you can choose from the strident song stylings of Roma Saddam (Flash site with music), "Saddam" a direct-to-video Italian film about two contractors/mercenaries not necessarily in Iraq, "Saddam Noel" a comedy mashup by popular Spanish-language YouTubers CualCerdo (contains harsh non-English language) or the Saddam Virus (a 'Stupid Virus Strain' from 1989). And is for sale (again). I'm somewhat surprised (and encouraged) I didn't find more web opportunists using the name...
posted by wendell at 1:06 PM PST - 9 comments

Of Bunyips, Shrimpenstein and Ladmo Bags

Before purple dinosaurs roamed the earth, back when sponges went pants-less, children in the US had to rely on their local TV stations for entertainment. Even “national” programs such as Romper Room or Bozo the Clown had a local component. From coast to coast and in between, everyone ate their cereal in front of someone different.
posted by jrossi4r at 12:12 PM PST - 80 comments

Blades and Booze

"It can seem daunting when you are initially handed a sabre and a chilled bottle of Champagne with the expectation that you will sever the top of the bottle with the sword’s blade. Do not be downhearted!" Sabrage is the ancient art of opening champagne bottles by slicing them with a sabre. Learn how to combine swords and booze this New Year's Eve.
posted by blahblahblah at 12:11 PM PST - 42 comments

The future is open

The world is not flat Like open source/content? Like youtube? You have a choice. According to IBM, the future is open, and according to Linux, this future is inevitable.
posted by localhuman at 10:47 AM PST - 40 comments

Nice photos from the 1930s

An Eye for the World. "Shotaro Shimomura XXI (1883-1944) was Chairman of The Daimaru Inc., a department store chain... He took these photographs on a subsequent trip around the world in 1934 and 1935." Just two pages of photos, but I find them irresistible—worth it for this one alone. (Via wood s lot.)
posted by languagehat at 9:00 AM PST - 18 comments

In other news, tulip futures were unchanged

The Decline of the PS3 Grey Market: Purchases by eBay arbitrageurs were one of the primary drivers of the Playstation 3 release date frenzy. Predictably, the bubble has now burst.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:11 AM PST - 73 comments


Free Science and Video Lectures Online A nice blog collecting science videos. The most recent post on Cognitive Computing, Consciousness, Science Philosophy and Mind Video Lectures has some hum-dingers.
posted by MetaMonkey at 6:46 AM PST - 10 comments

College Saga - Final Fantasy

Mark Leung's College Saga (pt 1) (2)(3)(4)(the entire 40 min. youtube) is many things, but it's mostly a massive live action homage to Final Fantasy and having way too much free time at Babson College. Points for tremendous effort. (Related Retrovideogamepopcultery: Collegehumor's Street Fighter: The Later Years.)
posted by Stan Chin at 2:31 AM PST - 18 comments

December 29

Hang on Saint Christopher!

Buggy Saints Row: The Musical
posted by Arch_Stanton at 8:47 PM PST - 11 comments

Saddam Hussein is Dead

Saddam has been executed, Iraqi media reports
posted by pyramid termite at 7:17 PM PST - 326 comments

Intriguing Line Art by Thomas Broome

Swedish artist Thomas Broomé's series "Modern Mantra" is a collection of 14 New Yorkeresque ink illustrations of scenes using the names of the objects being drawn as the illustration technique itself; it's complicated to describe, but the results are pretty compelling. Another exhibit worth checking out at the artist's homepage is the Coca-Locust gallery, a series of locusts made from Coca-Cola product logos worldwide.
posted by jonson at 6:20 PM PST - 15 comments

Put a door in the box....

Put the bunny in the box... Back at ya Justin (previously). The world is going to hell, but at least we still have laughter. This smile is for sale here.
posted by MapGuy at 3:38 PM PST - 35 comments


Perfume, the new movie (IMDB) is about the world of a man who has an unparalleled, acute sense of smell where the BBC go on to ask "But what is life like for the millions of people who have lost it / Imagine burning the toast unawares, every day. Mowing the lawn without a breath of fresh-cut grass ... That is day to day life for the thousands of people with anosmia, who lack a sense of smell."

I lost my sense of smell in 1995 and refer to the Anosmia Association for contemporary developments. Links from this dysfunctional victim's website are helpful, there are 91 incidents of anosmia at Furl (sign up) and there are Smell Disorders Discussion Groups. Earlier metafilter here and here.
posted by Schroder at 2:42 PM PST - 40 comments

"This sister of mine, a dark shadow robbing me of sunlight, is my one and only torment."

The strange story of June and Jennifer Gibbons.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 2:40 PM PST - 8 comments

Lies, damn lies and just plain making things upñ

The meeting's in 5 minutes, and your boss asked you to find a statistic online to prove a point. Like that the tobacco consumption in Brazil is decreasing, or that most seniors prefer cats to dogs. Whatever it is, we're now here to help you create valid-looking statistics in an instant! via
posted by signal at 1:56 PM PST - 24 comments


Get in on the stream while there's space, because Autechre is doing a boomtastic live DJ set full of 80s electronica, mashed up weirdness and god knows what else... more links posted in the thread as I think of them but I have to hit post now because it's time sensitive.
posted by fleetmouse at 1:36 PM PST - 32 comments

Cry of the Snow Lion

Tibet: Cry of the Snow Lion. The complete documentary (1 hr 43 min) on Google Video.
posted by homunculus at 1:35 PM PST - 8 comments

[on Texas politics] "Better than the zoo. Better than the circus."

AppreciationFilter: Molly Ivins --she's on hiatus while undergoing treatment for breast cancer. From a bio of her: ...She began her journalism career at the Complaint Department of the Houston Chronicle, then rapidly worked her way up to the position of Sewer Editor... , and some choice quotes of hers here. : >
posted by amberglow at 1:18 PM PST - 29 comments

Ghost Ridin' da Whip!

Hip-Hop Car Stunt Leaves 2 (Idiots) Dead... To ghost ride, frequently used in the context of "ghost riding the whip" (a "whip" being a vehicle) or simply ghostin' is when the driver and/or passengers of any given vehicle exit while it is still rolling and dance beside it or on the hood or roof. Ghost riding is one of the latest trends to be popularized by hyphy culture, which originated in the Bay Area of California. The act is one of the highest forms of "going dumb" and a representation of the style of hyphy. The term "ghost ride the whip" was given nationwide exposure in E-40's 2006 song Tell Me When to Go. However, E-40 was not the first to use this term, as it was coined much earlier by other Bay Area rappers such as Mac Dre.

Ghost Riding was also featured in an episode of The Girls Next Door When Kendra demonstrated the game for the other girls. The game ended predictably when Kendra's Escalade crashed into a stationary vehicle. anyone notice that most of the videos show, once again, white kids misappropriating black culture and making both races look stupid?
posted by jcterminal at 1:14 PM PST - 65 comments

A blast from the past

The Usborne Guide to Computer Games 1982 is full of fun ways to make traditional video games more exciting and contains some very accurate predictions.
posted by Bravocharlie at 12:35 PM PST - 13 comments

Jens Soering appeals to documentary makers

Any aspiring filmmakers want to help exonerate a geeky German guy with no legal options left, falsely convicted of murder in Virginia? In 1985, Jens Soering confessed to the murder of the parents of his American girlfriend, Elizabeth Haysom. He claims he was madly in love and confessed to protect her. Since 1995, Jens' very detailed description of events and the flaws in the case against him have been posted on the internet along with the former Virginian deputy attorney-general's (now his lawyer) endorsement. Jens' personal site maintains a list of articles and books Jens has written in prison. Elizabeth also has her own column.
posted by zaebiz at 12:10 PM PST - 27 comments

Gumbasia: The student film that began the legend.

In 1920, Slavko Vorkapić, an artist from Vojvodina (now Serbia) emigrated to the United States. He roamed the country for a year and ended up in Hollywood where he became a master of special effects. He began to teach at USC where a young student, Art Clokey was starting his film studies. Art Clokey also happened to tutor the son of Sam Engel-- famous producer and President of the MPAA. Clokey, mentored by the special effects master at USC, made a little art film using stop motion and claymation. One day he showed his "artsy" student film to Engel. When it was over, Mr. Engel said: "Art, that's the most excting film I've ever seen. We've got to go into business together." That is the story of Gumbasia (video). And the rest is history (previously on MeFi).
posted by TweetleBeetleBattleBookie at 11:12 AM PST - 5 comments

From Jamaica To Toronto

Jackie Mittoo. Wayne McGhie and the Sounds Of Joy. Bob and Wisdom. The Mighty Pope. And many others. A free concert back in July and a series of reissues have begun to tell the story of the Toronto reggae, funk and soul scene of the 1950's, '60's and '70's.
posted by The Card Cheat at 10:43 AM PST - 3 comments


Hey guys, Embryo here. I was just checking out dordo3's video response to tracheattack02's video response to sweathervest's video response to vaultingat's video response to shurpanet's video response to Kitty113's video response to tracheattack's video response to vaultingat's video response to dordo3's video response to Ben takes a photo of himself everyday -- and it was awesome. It was just awesome. I've given it a 5-star rating. And I've watched other video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to video responses to Ben takes a photo of himself everyday, and they just weren't worth a hobo nickel, nevermind an FPP. They were just stupid. This one was awesome. So, uh, check it out. (First link is the last link, as previously featured)
posted by Embryo at 7:00 AM PST - 82 comments

DJ Enferno

DJ Inferno is a former world DMC champion, but he's taking turntablism to the next level. No longer content with 'two turntables and a microphone' he's added a whole suite of new gear to his sets, allowing him to remix songs on the fly. -- Crazy, With or without you, Another Brick in the Wall, ... More viceos...
posted by empath at 5:55 AM PST - 55 comments

Eyeballs in the Sky

What are The Residents up to these days? The avant garde band (if you can legitimately call them avant garde or a band) made an odd choice with their last/ongoing release, The River of Crime. If you like physical objects, you can purchase a package with cover art, a blank cd-r and codes to a website where you can download them; if you don't, you can purchase the episodes, which are styled after old radio noirs, as podcasts or as a double album through itunes. Concurrently, they have been putting out a series of short films via youtube. The Timmy series, based on a character created for the 1995 cd-ROM "A Day at The Midway", uses a mix of found footage, animation, music and voiceover to tell a series of short unrelated stories. As much as the band has done to keep up with technology over the last thirty-five years, they vehemently ">oppose file sharing of their work, including the sharing of mp3s that they have put out for free on their own website. With that in mind, I wonder how the band feels about the amazing collection of concerts, videos, interviews and assorted other weirdness you get when you type their name into YouTube. [more inside]
posted by elr at 3:43 AM PST - 16 comments

I like to watch.

Got some free time over the New Year's long weekend? Well, here's every episode (or damn near it) of Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Boondocks, Clone High, Metalocalypse, Moral Orel, Robot Chicken, South Park (alt), Venture Brothers, Futurama. Or over here, there's all those and more. But wait my friends, there's more, yes, even more: for the same low price, I'll include the Ultimate Motherlode of Music Video (11,500 of them, or your money back!), alphabetized for your viewing pleasure. Just free up some bandwidth, and step inside ...
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:30 AM PST - 155 comments

The Atlas of Plucked Instruments

The bouzouki, the saz, chonguri and sarod, the veena and the shamisen, the cuatro and the oud. These and many hundreds more are to be found at the Atlas of Plucked Instruments. Plenty of guitars, banjos and mandolins as well.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 1:09 AM PST - 12 comments

December 28

Brass and bone sculptures of Jessica Joslin

Brass and bone sculptures of Jessica Joslin. From the FAQ: "Are they real bones? Some are, some aren't. I will continue to make it as difficult as possible to tell the difference..." Flickr set. [Bumped up a bit from this comment]
posted by mediareport at 10:54 PM PST - 10 comments

Men face jail for rape if a woman is drunk (UK Law)

Men face jail for rape if women are 'too drunk' to consent in bed to boost convictions. Men who have sex with drunken women will be at risk of being convicted of rape under new laws to be considered by ministers. The legal shake-up would mean a woman would be considered incapable of giving consent to sex if she had been drinking heavily.
posted by IronWolve at 9:10 PM PST - 256 comments


PARO: Seal Type Mental Commit Robot for Psychological Enrichment.
posted by gottabefunky at 8:30 PM PST - 18 comments

D.I.Y. Wacom Cintiq

Like many who spend their days manipulating pixels on their computers I have drooled over the Wacom Cintiq but the price tag can be disconcerting. One enterprising person decided to build his own.
posted by Tenuki at 7:24 PM PST - 18 comments

Geostationary Banana Over Texas

Geostationary Banana Over Texas is an art intervention that involves placing a gigantic banana over the Texas sky. This object will float between the high atmosphere & Earth's low orbit, being visible only from the state of Texas & its surroundings. From the ground, the banana will be clearly recognizable and visible day & night; it will stay up for approximately one month.
posted by jonson at 5:57 PM PST - 97 comments

If you don't like French philosophers, this might not be the post for you...

The most important contemporary French thinker? Influenced by Jacques Lacan and drawing on the set theory developed by Georg Cantor, Alain Badiou is (sort of) attempting to bridge the gap between continental and analytic philosophical traditions and provide a new foundation for leftist politics. His major work is Being and Event (PDF review) -- part 3 of the informal trilogy that began with Being and Time and Being and Nothingness? [more inside]
posted by papakwanz at 5:31 PM PST - 36 comments

The end of influenza?

The end of influenza? New british vaccine may prevent ALL types of flu, savings thousands of lives (and sick days) each year.
posted by Kickstart70 at 3:55 PM PST - 26 comments

The Pursuit of Happyness II: This time, it's a cross-cultural documentary

Three small classes of high school students, one in Watsonville, California, one in Jos, Nigeria, and one in Dharamsala, India, are currently collaborating on "Project Happiness". The students are "exchanging their thoughts about what happiness is, and how to behave in ways that promote happiness all around them," drawing on the Dalai Lama's Ethics for the New Millennium (useful 50-page pdf study guide; positive review from Christian Century magazine). In their work creating a curriculum for the book, the students communicate via email, a blog, and videos (an instructor in India describes the project's focus; a "what life is like here" video from India). The podcast section of the official site currently features just one introductory video posted a few weeks ago. The project will culminate in a meeting of all three classes in March 2007 in Dharamsala. A book and a PBS documentary are planned.
posted by ibmcginty at 3:44 PM PST - 5 comments

Video Podcast: TheBurg

TheBurg is an internet TV show set in Williamsburg and features hipsters doing what hipsters in Williamsburg do. Pretty funny stuff! Comes out once a month.
posted by k8t at 1:39 PM PST - 78 comments

Tough Love

The Trouble with Troubled Teen Programs
posted by daksya at 12:50 PM PST - 85 comments


PERMU7A7IONS, P3RMUT4TIONS, P3RMU74710NS, daunt if mini.
posted by otio at 12:17 PM PST - 12 comments

Nature gone Wild

Birds that rap and cows with accents. The big picture is urban adaptation, which is pretty cool. (...and the egg wins.)
posted by ewkpates at 10:06 AM PST - 17 comments

Post 9/11 Blues

"Post 9/11 Blues" by MC Riz, a.k.a. Rizwan Ahmed. The single isn't getting much airplay. You may remember Ahmed as the British Muslim actor who was illegally detained while coming home from the Berlin Film Festival.
posted by stammer at 8:59 AM PST - 15 comments

YouOS - A javascript powered web-based desktop operating system.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:50 AM PST - 94 comments

painting with music

Visual acoustics is a concept for interactive expression.
posted by nickyskye at 8:35 AM PST - 6 comments

7. The lion costume in the film Wizard of Oz was made from real lions.

TriviaFilter: 100 things we didn't know last year --a roundup of the best? of the year from BBC News' 10 things weekly column. ...20. Sex workers in Roman times charged the equivalent price of eight glasses of red wine.... 57. The word "time" is the most common noun in the English language, according to the latest Oxford dictionary. ...
posted by amberglow at 8:34 AM PST - 50 comments

Honour among them

Pushtunwali: Thieves, murderers, rapists; and how the Pushtuns' ancient tribal code is fighting for survival against radical Islam. via The Economist. More about Puhktuns and Puhktunistan and some history together with a brief explanation of Afghan ethnic groups. There is an interesting discussion of the main article on Sunni Forum.
posted by adamvasco at 2:25 AM PST - 21 comments


10 x 10 = 100. = 100 words, 100 pictures. 100 x 1000 = 10,000 words. 10,000 years.
posted by loquacious at 12:45 AM PST - 21 comments

An inconvenient dangered species

Global warming is to blame for the disapearing act of Polar Bears in the arctic. After years of so called "Scientific proof" the Bush administration finally admits they were wrong.
posted by PreteFunkEra at 12:06 AM PST - 51 comments

December 27

When is a conspiracy theory not a theory?

Hitler's Carmaker:
While GM was mobilizing the Third Reich, the company was also leading a criminal conspiracy to monopolistically undermine mass transit in dozens of American cities that would help addict the United States to oil.
--Edwin Black, author of IBM and the Holocaust explains why the U.S. dependency on oil is no accident. Not everyone agrees, of course.
posted by craniac at 11:07 PM PST - 38 comments


das kleine krokodil
posted by vronsky at 9:51 PM PST - 44 comments

Goldsmith sings Wittgenstein

Goldsmith sings Wittgenstein. Part two. (mp3) Kenneth Goldsmith (previously), the "most boring writer that has ever lived," has become a sort of rockstar in conceptual art circles. When he's not singing linguistic theory, you can find him transcribing his own speech, spinning records, and reading the other Kenny G's fanmail. More theory set to music.
posted by roll truck roll at 8:59 PM PST - 23 comments

FDA approves cloned meat

FDA approves meat and milk from cloned animals, no labels necessary.
posted by knave at 7:48 PM PST - 81 comments

And the races begin

Tomorrow morning, from this place, I'll announce that I am a candidate for President of the United States.. John Edwards prepares to throw his hat into the ring via YouTube, from New Orleans' 9th Ward.
posted by Astro Zombie at 7:24 PM PST - 189 comments

guitar gods from the 60s

Yardbirds documentary part 1, part 2, and part 3. Bonus: Jimmy Page, age 14.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:31 PM PST - 27 comments

Pop-Up Video

BubblePLY lets you easily overlay subtitles and speech balloons over videos hosted on other sites.
posted by Partial Law at 5:10 PM PST - 8 comments

Hardboiled Men's Magazines

Yet another interesting Flickr Photoset; this time pulpy covers from hard-boiled Men's Magazines for True Men, addressing the key issues of the day, like "Do college girls enjoy panty raids," and exposing the fabulous secrets of the Nazi love camps.
posted by jonson at 4:06 PM PST - 62 comments

Cash & Hemlock Partners LLC

EarthShell, a small Maryland company that makes environment-friendly packaging (among others) may wink out of existence thanks to PIPEs, or private investments in public equities. Who likes PIPEs? Hedge Funds, mostly. Companies that take the pipe, as it were, may be sealing their doom. 10 percent of PIPE deals done this year are 'death spirals', where the company's stock price plummets from short selling by the financiers who structured the deal in the first place. And of course it's legal if you don't get caught shorting the stock naked and covering with the shares from the PIPE. (BTW, appears to be on the margins now or I'd have linked it).
posted by nj_subgenius at 1:58 PM PST - 19 comments

In a culture where work can be a religion, burnout is its crisis of faith.

Burnout. [Via.]
posted by homunculus at 1:06 PM PST - 26 comments

145 educational lecture podcasts

The Productive Strategies blog links directly to 145 podcast feeds from universities.
posted by jbickers at 12:26 PM PST - 12 comments

Bowmaster Prelude

Bowmaster Prelude is a new awesome Flash game from the author of Bowmaster. Now you can get allied units to help you out, but they cost gold pieces, which will restrict your ability to buy upgrades. Much better graphics, better gameplay, even bigger time sinkhole.
posted by cerebus19 at 11:20 AM PST - 17 comments

Stop the hate. Love, Saddam.

Saddam's farewell letter.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:41 AM PST - 46 comments

Bring that beat back! (press "start")

Of course you know the rhythm box/drum machine has had a profound impact on modern music-making, but how much do you know about its history? Was the Rhythmicon the very first rhythm machine? Korg's DoncaMatic (great name, eh?) was one of the first commercial models. Up until 1979 they were all pre-programmed, but Roland ushered in the modern era with the user-programmable CR-78, and followed it up soon after with the legendary TR808. Go here for a fairly comprehensive overview of vintage drum machines (organized alphabetically, with photos and descriptions/background info). And here you can interact with a wide assortment of virtual [Flash] rhythm boxes of the 70's and 80's. (Knee-jerk Flash haters, go ahead and hate it, but this is one of the best uses of Flash I can imagine.)
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:03 AM PST - 25 comments

Orhan Pamuk

Orhan Pamuk, "My Father's Suitcase" (The Nobel Lecture, 2006), "The Pamuk Apartments," and "On Trial."
posted by semmi at 8:55 AM PST - 4 comments

Planet-hunter probe "Corot"

France launches planet-hunting probe "Corot", the first spacecraft able to detect rocky planets down to about twice Earth's size. Its 2.5 year mission will be to seek out new planets from a field of about 200,000 nearby stars.
posted by stbalbach at 7:36 AM PST - 21 comments

December 26

Let loose the Dogs Of War!

Operation Red Dog. "The group of [N]eo-Nazis planned to travel from New Orleans to Dominica on a chartered boat, land at night in rubber boats, meet up with John and his guerrilla force of disgruntled army veterans and Rastafarian rebels, and then lay waste to Dominica's police force and political leaders." Of those Neo-Nazis, Don Black would go on to marry David Duke's ex-wife and found the notorious racist site Stormfront. Another of the gaggle, Wolfgang Droege, would get fatally shot by a man who was convinced that he'd installed surveillance and tunnels into his house as revenge for the time he'd laughed at Mr. Droege.
posted by Sticherbeast at 11:53 PM PST - 23 comments

Gerald Ford Passes Away

MSNBC and NBC News is reporting that former President Gerald Ford has died at age 93.
posted by barrista at 9:01 PM PST - 248 comments

Keepin' It Real

The Rise Of Bullshit In The Black Community [YouTube, NSFW] Author/humorist Sabrina Lamb tackles "the epidemic of bullshit sweeping the black community" in a new book.
posted by dhammond at 6:55 PM PST - 77 comments


There's a new version of line rider, a game where a little guy on a sled rides down lines. This new version features a 'flag' button that lets you save the speed and position and edit from there, allowing you to create great epic paths incrementally through trial and error.
posted by delmoi at 4:15 PM PST - 23 comments

Monsieur Chat

(flickr slideshow), subject of a documentary by Chris Marker. Enigmatic expression of Paris youth. Symbol of..? Les chats with copyright symbols have meaning for me. Flickr pool here.
posted by CCBC at 1:37 PM PST - 7 comments

Pony Express for the Damned

Write letters to your unsaved friends. When the rapture comes, this guy will mail them.
posted by Sfving at 12:06 PM PST - 80 comments

a sequence of sequential art

A history of picture stories from 300 AD to 1929 and commentary. The evolution of speech balloons. Photos & drawings of early cartoonists. [via]
posted by nickyskye at 11:56 AM PST - 11 comments

US deaths in Iraq exceed 9/11 deaths today

US deaths in Iraq exceed 9/11 deaths today but of course the Iraqi deaths crossed that line long ago.
posted by Kickstart70 at 10:57 AM PST - 74 comments

Personalized Bobbleheads

Obviously, it's never too soon to start thinking about ideas for next year's Christmas gifts. How about your own custom-made bobblehead?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:15 AM PST - 11 comments

Well It Works For The French Foreign Legion

NewsFilter: War in Iraq taxing the military? Why not just replace our soldiers with foreigners?
posted by sourbrew at 9:50 AM PST - 47 comments


Soup has a history. Enjoy this comprehensive history of the humble (and sometimes not so humble) dish. A widely stated "fun fact" is that the earliest soup was made with hippopotamus bones, but fortunately today you have much tastier options. One favorite, chicken soup, is easy to make and really is good for you [pdf] .
posted by Deathalicious at 8:12 AM PST - 25 comments

Postcards from WWI

451 Postcards from World War I. Personal notes, propaganda, battle memorials, etc.
posted by jonson at 7:53 AM PST - 12 comments

Day-After-Christmas Blues?

12 Days of Quizzes. You're having to work the day after Christmas. You hate it. You hate your boss for making you work. None of your friends are having to work. So do what I did - kill some time and sap the last bit of profitability out of 2006 by taking these 12 quizzes. It'll be lunchtime before you know it. Five short hours later, you can go back home and procrastinate on taking down all those decorations.
posted by Oriole Adams at 7:29 AM PST - 4 comments

Hiroshima re-enacted with CGI

Hiroshima re-enacted with CGI. Done by the BBC as part of the documentary "Hiroshima". Part 2
posted by empath at 7:11 AM PST - 196 comments

Picture Newsletter

Picture Newsletter.
posted by hama7 at 6:10 AM PST - 3 comments

Scrooge and IP Rights

Scrooge and Intellectual Property Rights. A suggestion by Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz on methods to reduce IP rights market distortions in the field of medical and drugs research.
posted by elpapacito at 4:24 AM PST - 41 comments

For this post I had no message, and no agenda. I just thought it was funny.

So This Is (a Conservative) Christmas via the nobody'd-mistake-him-for-a-liberal Glenn Beck. Breaking news: Groups Turn Profit Defending Christmas. And the almost-50-years-young rebuttal to anyone who believes that the spiritual holiday of Christmas is cheapened by commercial entities that do NOT specifically invoke the name: Stan Freberg's Green Chri$tma$
posted by wendell at 12:21 AM PST - 33 comments

December 25

The Age of Mammals

End of the Year Review, 2026. Looking Back on the First Quarter of the Twenty-First Century.
posted by homunculus at 7:09 PM PST - 55 comments

All the Joy the World Contains

Wayward country son Jimmy Dale Gilmore's essay via NPR A little post-feast reflection. Real/WMP audio and text.
posted by crowman at 6:55 PM PST - 10 comments

Texas to increase Tax on Cigarettes by 1$ on Jan 1st.

Jan 1st, Texas to increase tax on cigarettes by $1. Texas will increase the sales tax on cigarettes from 41 cents to $1.41 on Jan 1st. Hoping to fund schools and fight the 1.5 billion dollar health care bill from smoking related illnesses.
posted by IronWolve at 11:44 AM PST - 125 comments

What good is an army of cats without armor?

Armor for cats and rats. Well, really it's cats and mice, but that doesn't rhyme as well.Token Samurai Cat Jeff de Boer, the artist (bio here) all links have been coralized to protect the webhost
posted by filmgeek at 10:22 AM PST - 27 comments

Once more around the sun

2007 Calendar: It contextualizes every hour, even on a year’s time scale: if someone marks the calendar, then looks back in even as little as an hour, they will be able to see time’s inexorable march. ...a sort of graph paper for personal life.
posted by signal at 9:13 AM PST - 12 comments

Whatever happened to gold, frankincense, and myrrh?!?

Best wishes for a Christmas of peace and joy and a New Year of triumph over terrorism! from the U.S. Citizens Committee to Keep and Bear Arms, a.k.a. "the Common Sense Gun Lobby".

"If Jesus came back and saw what's going on in His name, He'd never stop throwing up." -- Woody Allen (Hannah And Her Sisters, 1986)
posted by Quiplash at 8:57 AM PST - 45 comments

Ethiopia declares war against the Islamic Courts Union

Ethiopia Hits Somali Targets, Declaring War (The New York Times). the Ethiopian government has declared war on Somalia's ruling Islamic Courts Union. The Islamic Courts Union, which had gained control over much of Somalia, had been engaged in a civil war against the Ethiopian backed Transitional Federal Government. Back in October of 2006 the BBC reported that the Islamic Courts Union had declared a 'holy war' against Ethiopia due to their support of the Transitional Federal Government. What many may not be aware of is that Ethiopia is a recipient of American economic and military aid. More links from The New York Times on the lead up of events: 12/22, 12/23, 12/24.
posted by j-urb at 7:14 AM PST - 42 comments

The Good Earth.

Christmas reading from Apollo 8. This is what they saw.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:59 AM PST - 30 comments

merry festivus

For all the rest of us...
posted by localhuman at 6:20 AM PST - 7 comments

James Brown

James Brown ...just died
posted by hortense at 12:11 AM PST - 281 comments

December 24

Radiohead Live - OK Computer Tour

Merry Christmas, Metafilter! In the spirit of the holiday, my gift for the Radiohead fans among you is this entire Radiohead concert (Google Vid), a non-bootleg produced for MTV originally recording from the OK Computer tour back in 1997. For the non-Radiohead fans, my gift is that I forgive you your imperfections. And finally, for those who don't celebrate Christmas, my gift is that I made you a cookie... but then I eated it.
posted by jonson at 11:59 PM PST - 39 comments


Paul Westerberg Puts Screwdriver Through Hand. Could be sidelined for up to a year, says friend Jim Walsh, who originally reported the accident.
posted by Liosliath at 11:46 PM PST - 31 comments


posted by loquacious at 11:43 PM PST - 37 comments

Great sheikhs

Religious popular music from Upper Egypt Munshidin sing devotional songs, Tartil (a melodic recitation of the Qur'an), and Tawashih, which uses call-and-response . One of a number of interesting music resources at bolingo.
posted by Abiezer at 8:47 PM PST - 10 comments

The don't be Evil Empire?

people aren't happy about Google canceling it's API and replacing it with an AJAX search widget you're supposed to put on your page (and one that's deliberately obfuscated and difficult to extract data from). Google's obsession with secrecy isn't going unnoticed, and some employees are starting to feel like the magic is gone and they're being treated like children. Oh, and just to keep things in perspective Microsoft just filed a patent on RSS
posted by delmoi at 7:44 PM PST - 35 comments

Search this!

Wikiasari search engine. Wikipedia founder plans to offer a new search engine using "the same network of followers" for the process. “Essentially, if you consider one of the basic tasks of a search engine, it is to make a decision: ‘this page is good, this page sucks’,” Mr Wales said. “Computers are notoriously bad at making such judgments, so algorithmic search has to go about it in a roundabout way. But we have a really great method for doing that ourselves,” he added. “We just look at the page. It usually only takes a second to figure out if the page is good, so the key here is building a community of trust that can do that.”
posted by Brian B. at 3:44 PM PST - 29 comments

Filter Filter

The end of mad cow disease? Scientists announce a filter that can remove the prions that cause vCJD - blocking the spread of the disease, at least via blood transfusions.
posted by Artw at 12:54 PM PST - 16 comments

Postapocalyptic Bleakness

La Jetée. Following the postapocalyptic bleakness of the Threads posting, you may wish to watch La Jetée,, a 28-minute film told nearly entirely in stark black-and-white photos (and, in this version, with an English narration). This has quite a following, especially since Terry Gilliam's eerily similar 12 Monkeys.
posted by John of Michigan at 10:57 AM PST - 50 comments

Gorgeous means six bars on your cellphone, always.

Gorgeous - a spoken word poem by Rives. {via TED Talks}
posted by dobbs at 10:17 AM PST - 5 comments

Google Books uncovers old literary crimes

Dead Plagiarists Society. Using Google Books to uncover old (and recent) literary crimes. "Given the popularity of plagiarism-seeking software services for academics, it may be only a matter of time before some enterprising scholar yokes Google Book Search and plagiarism-detection software together into a massive literary dragnet, scooping out hundreds of years' worth of plagiarists—giants and forgotten hacks alike—who have all escaped detection until now."
posted by stbalbach at 9:59 AM PST - 43 comments

FizerPharm: Flexible ethics for a complex world

Peter Watts on Vampire Domestication (embedded Flash video, must click to start). The mythical corporation FizerPharm ("Trust. Profit. Deniability.") share their detailed research into the evolution and possible commercial applications of Homo sapiens whedonum. You will learn: How and why the "crucifix glitch" came about. Why you should run from a blushing vampire. How many kilograms of human are needed to make one kilogram of vampire. How vampires resemble two year old humans, domestic shorthaired cats, and lungfish. And why "survival of the fittest" should be reconceptualized as "survival of the least inadequate". [more inside]
posted by maudlin at 9:20 AM PST - 19 comments

working for a holiday wage

Sometimes You Have to Work on Christmas - a Harvey Danger song for all those who keep the wheels turning. (YouTube alert)
posted by madamjujujive at 6:06 AM PST - 22 comments

I'm dreaming of a hot Christmas, like the ones Jesus used to know

ThreatDown! Scientists and other liberals reporting BEARS no longer hibernating in Spain! Global warming deniers, however, determined to continue their hibernation.
posted by orthogonality at 2:52 AM PST - 45 comments

December 23

Discover New Illustrators via Patchbox

Patchbox is an easy & fun way to discover online visual artists you may not have otherwise known. Each artist submits only an 80 x 80 pixel thumbnail, and if you like what you see, a clickthrough takes you to their gallery/homepage. Found via.
posted by jonson at 11:47 PM PST - 13 comments

"A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection"

"[C]omputer design is being dictated not by electronic design rules, physical layout requirements, and thermal issues, but by the wishes of the content industry." By deliberately breaking audio and video functionality, opening up new avenues for debilitating malware, and reversing performance gains in desktop PCs and third-party components, Peter Gutmann argues "the Vista Content Protection specification could very well constitute the longest suicide note in history."
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:03 PM PST - 131 comments

Uncompromising alternative

The art of Flavio Constantini. Naval officer turned anarchist Constantini (1926- ) paints rebels, martyrs, assassins, writers, and architecture, all with a special quality of light.
posted by Abiezer at 8:23 PM PST - 4 comments


The sphere. A simple object. Primitive. Round.
The CGSphere Project is simply this: What can you do with a round object in your 3D world?
Gallery here

Contributors have tried to create the most captivating 3d sphere, using their choice of software.
My favorites: My Precious. No Way Out. Solar Radiometer. Idea in a Cage. Sputnik. Hunter Killer. Don't Do it. mini adventure. Corals. Pin Ball. Spy Hole.
posted by filmgeek at 8:14 PM PST - 19 comments

Holiday gifts for the world.

In need of last-minute Christmas gifts? Want to help the world in some way? Websites like ChangingThePresent and Alternative Gifts International allow you to buy or sponsor something useful as a present - from an hour with a creative coach, to wheelchairs in Cambodia; from walking children to school in the West Bank to flighting corruption. Maybe even a charity gift certificate? [more inside]
posted by divabat at 5:46 PM PST - 19 comments

Stories of The Dreaming As Told Through Sight, Sound and Art.

The Dreaming (arguably better known as 'The Dreamtime') is more than just the story of how the world was created as told by Aboriginal Australians. It is also the basis for their way of life and death, their source of power in life and it tells of the life and influence of their ancestors on their culture. It was so important to Aboriginal Australians in the time before the white invasion of Australia that it was the one commonly held belief amongst a culture that consisted of over 500 different tribes (discussion of Dreamtime beliefs here). Thought to be the oldest continuously maintained cultural history on Earth, it is often presented as a series of inter-related stories explaining Aboriginal Australian origins and culture, such as how the Australian landscape was created or how the Mimi spirits taught them how to paint these stories on the walls of caves more than 40,000 years ago.

And what better way to learn of several of the many different Dreamtime stories than to listen and watch them being told by Aboriginal Australians elders themselves? And if that isn't enough Dreamtime mythology for you, here's some links to various sites which allow you to view Aboriginal rock art to see how these stories were translated into a form of artistic expression which is now five times older than the Egyptian Pyramids themselves.
posted by Effigy2000 at 5:25 PM PST - 14 comments


posted by delmoi at 4:28 PM PST - 16 comments

"That's 35 *weather balloons*" "Uh" *Weather balloons!*" "Uhh, roger!"

In 1982 "Lawnchair" Larry Walters tied about 40-45 4' helium-filled weather balloons to a Sears lawnchair and launched himself from San Pedro, California to rise to over 16,000 feet. Here is the audio recording of the CB communications of that flight, available with much more information from this page via
(Warnings: Audio is Real Audio - use Real Alternative. First half of audio may contain recordings of extremely panicked and strident girlfriend.)
posted by loquacious at 2:24 PM PST - 31 comments

Curse you, Red Baron!

Triplane Madness presents photos of a large selection of triplane (and quad- and quint- and more) experiments in avionics conducted in a wide variety of countries in the early days of aviation.
posted by mwhybark at 12:58 PM PST - 8 comments


The Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Ontario, was founded in 1999 with the support of Research in Motion's Mike Lazaridis, and has since moved from its original home in Waterloo's Old Post Office to an award-winning building of its own. Home to such physics iconoclasts (rebels?) as Lee Smolin, Perimeter offers programs and activities for the general public as well as the scientific community, and, more importantly, makes many of its scientific outreach lectures available online.
posted by greatgefilte at 12:35 PM PST - 4 comments

Happy Early Hogswatch

Hogfather finally debuts a live action version of Terry Pratchett's Discworld series. A two part, four hour mini-series that aired on December 17th and 18th on Skyone, it will re-air on December 25th and 26th. For you sad Americans not in Britain, you can sate your live action Discworld desires with The 12 Days Of Hogswatch {loud, annoying flash entry portal from Skyone's other show Project Catwalk}, the Skyone Skyone Website and The Making Of Hogfather podcast. And yes, The Grim Squeaker makes an appearance.
posted by smallerdemon at 12:20 PM PST - 53 comments

It was a very good year for city girls...

Jerry Berns, long time co-owner of the "21 Club" in Manhattan, has passed away at the age of 99. The club started as a speakeasy on 21 W. 52nd St. (wmv), used to be home to the $21 burger (now it costs $27), and was sold in 1985 to a business magnate for $21 million. Berns may have made it a point to pass away on the 21st of December, not to be outdone Pete Kriendler, co-owner of the club, who died on the same day five years ago.
posted by phaedon at 9:39 AM PST - 18 comments

Precipitous Penguin Populations

Unhappy Feet. Penguin populations around the world are crashing. Biologists are mystified but suspect warmer oceans caused by global warming is reducing available food.
posted by stbalbach at 9:34 AM PST - 36 comments

"The greatest art form of the twentieth century" Browse TV spots from around the world at this industry site highlighting new creative work. Highly rated ads include this one for Carlton beer, this sober PSA, this lovely one for the California lottery and a fun take on evolution for Guinness. And then there's this, um, sausage ad. Browse the controversies (mostly complaints about copycats), ads from Romania and Iceland and Belgium, or last year's best ads. Many of the most amusing seem to be for beer.
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:32 AM PST - 8 comments

How I got critically bit in my socially constructed ass

Made in Criticalland. Sociologist Bruno Latour reflects upon the way social construction and social critique have been instrumentalised by lobbyists, conspiracy theorists, "instant revisionists" and other unsavory people: We, in the academy, like to use more elevated causes–society, discourse, knowledge-slash-power, fields of forces, empires, capitalism–while conspiracists like to portray a miserable bunch of greedy people with dark intents, but I find something troublingly similar in the structure of the explanation, in the first movement of disbelief and, then, in the wheeling of causal explanations coming out of the deep Dark below. This from the guy who, thanks to his Relativistic account of Einstein's relativity, was one of the targets of the Sokal hoax.
posted by elgilito at 8:28 AM PST - 28 comments

Samantha Smith

In 1982, ten-year old Samantha Smith from Maine wrote a letter to Yuri Andropov asking whether there was going to be a nuclear war. Andropov responded, and Samantha accepted his invitation to stay at a Russian pioneer camp with Soviet children. Tragically, within the following two years both the young Samantha and Secretary Andropov passed away. (wmv)
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:20 AM PST - 23 comments

Ben's bowls

At one time or another you've probably rubbed your finger along the rim of a glass to produce a note. In 1761 Ben Franklin took the idea further with the invention of the glass (h)armonica. The instrument enjoyed some popularity, but is believed to have caused health problems due to lead content in the glass. Performers complained of loss of feeling in their hands, some even suffered nervous breakdowns. People became very frightened of the armonica, and by 1830 it was all but extinct. But there's been some renewal of interest: they're being played, and they're being made. You can play a surprisingly good-sounding virtual version. Or listen to a charming rendition of a seasonally appropriate tune. [more links inside] Oh, and: [previously]
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:09 AM PST - 14 comments

December 22

Look Ma, No Hands!

Fixing a Flat Tire without Hands
A series of photos of a man, who cannot use his hands, patching, repairing and reseating a bicycle inner tube. Why? Apparently its his job.
Somehow my little problems don't seem so insurmountable anymore.
posted by fenriq at 10:43 PM PST - 27 comments, a budding collection of obscure, deprecated, and outcast HTML tags. [via Projects]
posted by Spike at 8:33 PM PST - 47 comments

Your tax dollars at work.

Space Shuttle Discovery lands. (WMV) Watch for the view from the cockpit.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:20 PM PST - 38 comments

Operation Fragmentation

The artists participating in Operation Fragmentation were given an unpainted vinyl doll (with a grenade shaped head) and an Army surplus ammo case and let loose to create what they wished. The results are really great, with the steampunk automoton, the peace dove & the explosive genie in a bottle being my three favorites.
posted by jonson at 7:41 PM PST - 6 comments

The Agronomist

The Agronomist. Is a documentary about bananas and the republics (?) [2][3] where they are grown. Exquisite, tasty ,yellow and refreshing, this fruit was cultivated by some determined people. Get a video sample on agronomism or learn more about juicy melons.
posted by elpapacito at 3:45 PM PST - 11 comments

The Duke lacrosse rape case

The Duke lacrosse rape case hurtled toward perhaps sinister motives last week with testimony from the head of the private DNA lab prosecutor Nifong hired to test the rape kit samples taken from the accuser. Brian Meehan revealed that not only had his lab found DNA samples from five unknown men, none of whom were Duke lacrosse players, Meehan had also agreed with Nifong not to put that info in the DNA Security's final report. Were it not for the fact that the three defendants have counsel capable of pouring over thousands of pages of technical documents, this vital, exculpatory evidence would have gone unnoticed. Previous opinions in MeFi.
posted by semmi at 2:40 PM PST - 276 comments

From one civil war to another

We all know of Confederate General Stonewall Jackson, but what about the ironclad built in his name? Courtesy of the United States Naval Historical Center, her history comes to life in photographic form. Built in Europe, she was captured at the end of the war and sent to rest in the Washington Naval Yards. From there, the Stonewall was sold to Japan and rechristened the Kotetsu. She passed hands from the Shogunate to the Emperor, and later received her last name of Azuma. Under the Emperor's forces, she played a role in perhaps the most important naval battle of the Meiji Restoration.
posted by Atreides at 11:25 AM PST - 8 comments

Pesky little buggers!

Elf Attack! (Friday flash). Go ahead, waste the rest of the day! (taken from MoFi)
posted by Totally Zanzibarin' Ya at 11:16 AM PST - 23 comments

Insect intrigue - holidays and indiscretions

The Insects' Christmas - a 1913 Russian stop-motion film about a Father Christmas ornament come to life who rounds up the insects of the forest and Mr. Frog to celebrate the holiday. This film by Ladislaw Starewicz who also produced The Cameraman's Revenge, a wonderful stop-motion film of of insect infidelity. More on the incredible Ladislaw Starewicz and his films. (warning: insect sex and violence)
posted by madamjujujive at 10:35 AM PST - 18 comments

You better watch out...

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, but do you know Stekkjarstaur, Giljagaur, Stufur, Thvorusleikir, Pottaskefill, Askasleikir, Hurdarskellir, Skyrgamur, Bjugnakraekir, Gluggagaegir, Gattathefur, Ketkrokur and Kertasnikir? They're the Jolasveinar, the impish "Yuletide Lads" of Iceland, and those are only some of their many names. During the thirteen days before Christmas, legend says that they do their best to monkeywrench the celebrations with hijinks like stealing sausages, milk, and candles, and peeping into windows and up skirts. The children of gruesome child-eating trolls Gryla and Leppaludi, who were known for snatching naughty children, the elves got their start in the 17th century. In the years since, their image has apparently mellowed, and now they leave children presents in their shoes and limit themselves to mild pranks.
posted by Miko at 9:17 AM PST - 21 comments

Choose Your Own Adventure with bees, lasers, zombies, robots, hot scientists...

"There is no feeling more satisfying than tearing into a beehive with a sledgehammer." This from Trainsaw, by way of introduction to their new Choose Your Own adventure. If beehives, lasers, city destruction, robots, hot scientists, and the like aren't your style, try their many rants or reviews. Those lampooned include Bob Dylan, all the cool kids, diabetes, and a smattering of everything else. Definitely indebted to Real Ultimate Power and Maddox, but...definitely different.
posted by limeonaire at 9:07 AM PST - 18 comments

Calamari for Christmas

Live giant squid captured off Japan. (Reuters video). Alas, the squid died during capture. Poor squid.
posted by spitbull at 7:42 AM PST - 64 comments

Percentage of city’s households with digital receivers- 11

The City Desk is a blog dedicated to covering the history and traditions of a city that does not exist. Get the dirt on about the tramway that never happened or take a gander at fascinating statistics about the population. Heck, there's even a definitive origin for the term "Black Friday."
posted by beaucoupkevin at 7:37 AM PST - 8 comments

"I'm going to have you killed."

NPR rebroadcasts David Sedaris reading from his book Santaland Diaries.
posted by Nathanial Hörnblowér at 7:32 AM PST - 7 comments

Fauxto: web-based Photoshop

Flash Friday: Fauxto is a lightweight web-based Photoshop alternative. Import or create, edit, and save your images. On its heels are similar web-based apps like ScrapBlog and lesser options for basic image sizing and cropping.
posted by deern the headlice at 7:29 AM PST - 14 comments

Wii On My Cat

In the tradition of great cat sites, with a dose of this holiday's hot item, comes WiiKitty! (via Kotaku)
posted by Dr-Baa at 6:31 AM PST - 15 comments


Hick Hop - Asylum Street Spankers (previously)
posted by hypersloth at 6:21 AM PST - 10 comments

Anybody want to swap refs?

You cannot guarantee freedom of speech and enforce copyright law. Freenet is a decentralized censorship resistant p2p distributed network which aims to provide freedom of speech through strong anonymity. By pooling bandwidth and hard drive space (similar to Seti@home), users are able to anonymously publish and retrieve any kind of file.
posted by localhuman at 6:01 AM PST - 157 comments

Giveaway of the Day

Giveaway of the Day. One free complete commercial software package with free registration per day. Today it is Web Stream Recorder Pro.
posted by srboisvert at 5:03 AM PST - 20 comments

"The first comment is El-Oh-El-exclamation mark-exclamation mark-one-exclamation mark."

Blogs by Phone - for when your family and friends have trouble keeping up with your blog posts. (YouTube video from SixApart)
posted by divabat at 3:33 AM PST - 23 comments

December 21

wild style

Mr. Magic's Rap Attack. An important figure in the world of hip-hop radio, Mr. Magic debuted in 1983 on WBLS-FM in New York City with the first exclusive rap radio show to be aired on a major station. Billing itself as Rap Attack, Magic's show featured Marley Marl as the DJ and Tyrone "Fly Ty" Williams as the show's co-producer. You can get down on it via this classic episode (realmedia) from December 1986, courtesy of WFMU's Aircheck archives.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 8:38 PM PST - 23 comments

TomTom Talks

You have reached your destination.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 8:03 PM PST - 31 comments

That's (Almost) All, Folks

The 50 Greatest Cartoons Ever: the List - including links to the full-length videos of the corresponding toons on YouTube and Google, etc. Based on a twelve year-old-vote by the animation industry, which explains why there are no appearances by Cartman, Bart, or Fry.
posted by tsarfan at 8:01 PM PST - 71 comments

AskMe vs Slate's Explainer?

Slate's Explainer is generally a pretty entertaining and interesting read. Now, they've posted a list of the questions they couldn't answer this year. I was wondering whether some of the AskMe crowd might just be able to knock a few off the list.
posted by nevercalm at 7:41 PM PST - 51 comments

Homemade Wooden Skyscraper

The story of how Russian Nikolai Sutyagin began building his homemade wooden skyscraper, went to prison, lost most of his fortune & now lives with his wife in his unfinished masterpiece is a fascinating one. Many more photos of the structure can be found here. Via
posted by jonson at 7:22 PM PST - 13 comments


Threads (Google Video, 1hr 50min). Classic Reagan/Thatcher era nuclear war film that scared the bejeezus out of everyone in 1984 (including my 14-year-old self). [good background previously]
posted by schoolgirl report at 6:59 PM PST - 91 comments

Sin Destroyers - Gift to the World

Gift to the World (youtube) Tongue firmly in cheek is the modus operandi of the Sin Destroyers (on mefi previously here) a band best summed up in this press quote, “If Iron Maiden had attended Catholic school, this would be their garage band”. I’m not sure what series of decisions led to the formation of a parody Christian rock band, but the results are pretty damn funny (and rockin’). Dig on their holiday offering, Gift to the World. If you’re feeling particularly pious today, you might skip this one. (via)
posted by pelican at 5:14 PM PST - 10 comments

Lots of finger-tapping deliciousness

Finger tapping is a very fast guitar technique in which the picking hand is used to "tap" individual notes on the fretboard, while the fretting hand can either remain stationary or be used to do hammer-ons/pull-offs to create even faster playing. Popularized in rock music by Eddie van Halen (YT, great visual example) in the late 1970's, the technique has become almost essential for speed/metal guitar players. Although finger tapping has been dismissed as "wankery" by some, I think that the intense, jazzy stylings of Stanley Jordan prove them wrong. (here is Stanley playing two guitars!) For more tapping madness you can enjoy the furious, virtuous insanity of Dragonforce (full video), and be sure not to miss the speed genius of Mr. Batio. Tapping isn't just for metal though, you can do it on a bass or an acoustic (amazing video).

Want to learn how? This lesson should get you started.
posted by baphomet at 3:25 PM PST - 116 comments

NY Times to black out portions of op-ed

Blacked out text in your newspaper. The White House has attempted to heavily censor parts of a proposed op-ed about Iran. So tomorrow, the NYT will run the op-ed with black redaction marks, and provide a list of non-classified sources for the exact material the administration claims is sensitive.
posted by mulligan at 3:06 PM PST - 74 comments

Every Cover Tells a Story

Some album covers with comments. [related]
posted by tellurian at 2:58 PM PST - 14 comments

Hope Watermelon videos

“There’s nothing like a BIG MELON to bring everybody together in Hope.” ( video ) It takes Bright Women to grow big melons, and old men to pick the world's largest. A better tagline possibly: "Hope Arkansas: Home of President Bill Clinton and the World's Largest Watermelons". Videos, as always, brought to you by the Hope MelonFest On-Deman Video Center.
posted by thisisdrew at 2:13 PM PST - 9 comments

Word List Recall

Test your short-term memory: Word List Recall. Via Andrew Tobias.
posted by russilwvong at 2:10 PM PST - 22 comments

Why do ferrets get all the bad press??

Ferret (allegedly) chews off baby's toes
posted by melangell at 1:22 PM PST - 92 comments

Aural Zen Master: Toshio Iwai's Electroplankton

Electroplankton (Flash, sound warning), written for the Nintendo DS platform, (not a "game" in the traditional sense) has been described as an aural "zen garden". Amazon reader reviews are mostly raves. For some people, it is the whole reason for purchasing a Nintendo DS. A Pixelsurgeon interview with creator (artist, collaborator, 2000 Leonardo New Horizons Award Finalist, and blogger) Toshio Iwai. Obligatory (but nontheless fascinating) YouTube links. WIRED has been onto him since 1997. See also: A Gamespot review of Electroplankton. <previously>
posted by spock at 12:33 PM PST - 20 comments

"TSOs have been trained to not touch the monkey during the screening process."

The TSA would like to help you travel with your service animal. As with any set of guidelines, sometimes people try to game the system.
posted by scrump at 12:29 PM PST - 16 comments

If I Only Had A Heart

Robot Rights.
posted by jimmythefish at 11:05 AM PST - 61 comments

A Happy Family is a World's First

"There are few world firsts nowadays, but it may be one." - A quote used to describe triplets born to a woman with two wombs. Double uterus is an uncommon condition that is often undetected until a woman becomes pregnant. The outcome for such pregnancies is usually good, though posing a higher risk for breech positioning. The odds of triplets (twins in one womb, one fetus in the other) are 25 million to one.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 11:03 AM PST - 29 comments

Jazz Age Novelties, Obscurities and Outliers on the YouTube

Here are some antique jazz novelties, obscurities and outliers:

Mae West with Duke Ellington - My Old Flame
The Hoosier Hotshots - She Broke My Heart In Three Places
Harry 'The Hipster' Gibson - Handsome Harry The Hipster
Spike Jones & His City Slickers - I Like To Sock Myself In The Face
Ina Ray Hutton and Her Melodears - Truckin'
Cliff Edwards - I Feel Pestamistic
Red Ingle - Nowhere
The King Cole Trio - I'm An Errand Boy for Rhythm
Jack Teagarden - The Sliphorn King of Polaroo
Reg Kehoe & His Marimba Queens - A Study In Brown
The Slim Gaillard Trio - Laguna Melody
posted by y2karl at 9:35 AM PST - 32 comments

What Not To Do and How Not To Do It

Idiot Tries to Hire Hacker to Change his GPA
Why study when you can just hire a hacker to adjust your GPA to something more to your liking? Or not.
And now an amazing (and scary) amount of his personal information is pwned!
posted by fenriq at 9:27 AM PST - 68 comments

Harry Potter and the what?

So you say you want to know the name of the new Harry Potter book?
posted by barjo at 7:40 AM PST - 216 comments

The Iraq Study Group Report experimental annotation project

The Iraq Study Group Report, annotated, an experimental project by The Institute for the Future of the Book.
posted by stbalbach at 7:10 AM PST - 9 comments

There's Something About "Merry"

"Have yourself a merry little Christmas. It may be your last." "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" has had several rewrites since Hugh Martin wrote the original lyrics for 1944's Meet Me in St. Louis. Judy Garland thought the song was "awfully dark" and Martin rewrote the lyrics for her performance in the movie. The penultimate line was "Until then, we'll have to muddle through somehow." Frank Sinatra called Martin in 1957 and said, "The name of my album is A Jolly Christmas. Do you think you could jolly up that line for me?' Sinatra's version, with its peppier lyrics, became a holiday standard. [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 6:56 AM PST - 32 comments

The inimitable Mrs. Miller

In April of 1966, there emerged onto the American pop music scene a singer like no other. Off-pitch and off-tempo, a 59 year-old grandmother would perform rock standards such as A Hard Days Night and Downtown [link to audio] in a bizarre operatic style. Often considered the worst pop star of all time, she rode the line between farce and reality, as the reputable Capitol Records promoted the so-called "new sound" without cracking a smile. Her name was Elva Connes Miller, but on stage she was known simply as Mrs. Miller. Was her recording career one of the cruelest practical jokes ever devised by the record industry?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:36 AM PST - 25 comments

My fondness is to be sucked off by ring-tailed fruit bats

YouTubeFugFilter: The Fugs in Sweden in 1968 (Part 1) (Part 2). Plus: The Fugs from the movie Chappaqua.
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:12 AM PST - 14 comments

Does this make Turkmenistan an orphan?

Saparmurat Niyazov is dead. The self-designated "father of the Turkmen" was the absolute ruler of Turkmenistan for fifteen years, a minor middle-Asian country which would completely escape the notice of the West if it wasn't for Turkmenbashi's unique form of excess and its oil. Along with the usual human rights violations and wallowing in wealth -- an estimated $3 billion cached in private accounts -- he dedicated himself to reshaping Turkmen's philosophy and cosmology on a scale to inspire Kim Jong Il. Among his accomplishments are redefining the ages of Man and renaming the names of days and months after neutrality, the flag, and Turkmenbashi's mother. Who now will speak up for Turkmen Melon Day?
posted by ardgedee at 4:10 AM PST - 42 comments

King William College Quiz

Rejoice! The highlight of Christmas - the King William College Quiz. Still pretty damn hard.
posted by biffa at 2:49 AM PST - 107 comments

December 20

Vein Viewer Infrared-absorption interactive "X-ray" gadget.

VeinViewer is an infrared-absorption interactive "X-ray" device using advanced real time signal processing and a projector. Google video. YouTube video with short explanation.
posted by loquacious at 11:59 PM PST - 19 comments

"YouTube gives them an easy, expressive, unmediated channel for many-to-many communication."

DEAF...i'm deaf, by kunosher, and just one of a growing group of videos on youtube created by the signing deaf. Many more here--from the personal to the political to videoblogs to deaf poetry jams to the news .
posted by amberglow at 7:50 PM PST - 29 comments

"The Free Woman is a riddle, the answer to which is the collar."

Goreans are inspired by the sci-fi works of Gor, by John Norman, whose turgid prose lays out a way of life for male masters and female slaves...but also Free Women. So why not meet one? Or at least say hello. And don't forget their humor! It sure is something. It just isn't BDSM.
posted by Sticherbeast at 7:47 PM PST - 62 comments

Ye Largishe List ov Gods & Spirits

I want to love the Table of Gods, a list of "4862 gods, godesses, deities, avatars, incarnations, angels, demons and various spirits, and 520 aliases, mispronounciations and generally confusing name variations." There isn't much more than a list of names with short descriptions, but you can search by keyword (say, chthonic), by origin (e.g., Canaan), and by name. The information and presentation are not in the same league as Encyclopedia Mythica, or even Godchecker, but it does list Hanuman.

The listings invite you to add keywords and comments, but unfortunately the feature is broken. You can add either, but they are appended unmoderated to the record for "A", which is consequently a mess. If I've been a good boy this year, this feature will work and be gleaning meaningful user contributions on Christmas morning, and I will get to love the Table of Gods.
posted by owhydididoit at 7:43 PM PST - 15 comments

Edo period creepy crawlies

Japan's National Diet Library Gallery has been mentioned here before, but the Pink Tentacle blog came across some fantastic late Edo period illustrations in the NDL Gallery by Kurimoto Tanshu (栗本丹洲, 1756 - 1834). Apparently he was a doctor, but he seems to be better known for his hundreds of biological illustrations. Many are of sea creatures, but there are also quite a few other plants and animals. ranging from realistic renditions to bizarre creatures. A huge and varied collection, but all are equally fascinating.
posted by p3t3 at 7:11 PM PST - 6 comments

Out of my cold dead ramparts...

Washington town has long tradition of firing cannon shots during football games. A cannon misfire maims student Brent Karch's leg. Folksy, compassionate response from townspeople? "Take away our cannon, and we'll "make sure the other gets blown off."
posted by krippledkonscious at 6:20 PM PST - 51 comments

Nice margins.

One of the world's most expensive chocolates expertly debunked. (For maximum awesome, read all 10 parts)
posted by hindmost at 5:50 PM PST - 201 comments

Beavers! (and CG)

From extra sheep and mountains in Brokeback Mountain, to flipping around shops and removing a leg in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Buzz Image provides an extensive portfolio of their CG and FX work. And plenty of beavers.
posted by divabat at 5:26 PM PST - 22 comments

Mission in Snowdriftland

Mission in Snowdriftland It's been snowing all day in Denver, and work's been cancelled, so Flash Friday comes early, courtesy Nintendo. Mission in Snowdriftland is a SNES-flavored sidescroller: control a snowman through 25 levels of jumping, snowflake-collecting, sea-otter smashing action. Find all of a level's snowflakes, and you can download a sekrit prize. I don't know what they are, because some goddamn fish skeleton keeps knocking me into the drink and killing me. Fun, challenging action here.
Did I mention it's an advent calendar, too? One level a day until Christmas.
posted by boo_radley at 4:07 PM PST - 15 comments

AWB's Sweet little earner

Make that bribe a tax deduction The Australian Wheat Board (AWB) [previously] has been found by to have breached UN sanctions on Iraq by paying the former regime almost three hundred million Australian dollars (300,000,000.00 AUD = 235,733,088.15 USD) in illegal “kickbacks” (read bribes). While the Australian Navy was instrumental in enforcing sanctions, at a huge cost to the Australian people (and indeed a far greater cost to Iraq people) this company was doing all it could to prop up Sadam’s regime. Now in the Australian Taxation Office have ruled that the bribes aren’t bribes, and have allowed the AWB to claim them as a tax deduction. Happily for some AWB’s share price surged with the news, so that’s some good news at least. It looks as if US might be taking action.
posted by mattoxic at 3:42 PM PST - 12 comments

Bob Waldmire Art

Bob Waldmire makes intricate, whimsical drawings of two things that go great together: old cars and Route 66. His maps and postcards are true works of art.
posted by gottabefunky at 2:30 PM PST - 5 comments


Awful Christmas gifts come in many varieties. For starters, there's Yule Doos or Jingle Smells.
posted by nickyskye at 2:30 PM PST - 10 comments

I I?

Questions to ask before marrying.
posted by dov3 at 2:08 PM PST - 133 comments

Alea iacta est...

Famous (and some not so famous but enlightened, imaginary, infamous, guilty and sadly, some perhaps innocent) Last Words. A few crystalline notions of finality to ponder in this year-end phase of "best of" lists and impending resolutions.
posted by objet at 1:49 PM PST - 25 comments

Paper TGV

Paper models of the TGV (Train à Grande Vitesse) free for download. Complete with a finished model gallery.
posted by Mitheral at 1:17 PM PST - 6 comments

Hustler no more.

Public Private Ventures is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the effectiveness of social policies, programs and community initiatives, especially as they affect youth and young adults. Their entire collection of social policy research publications are available for free on their website. Leaving the Street: Young Fathers Move from Hustling to Legitimate Work is particularly compelling; the title says it all, really.
posted by The Straightener at 12:33 PM PST - 4 comments

$16.5 Billion. That's with a B as in booyah!

It's Wall Street bonus season. And, as Henry Blodget writes, the folks who have "the good fortune of working in a hot industry in a favorable market environment" are doing extremely well this year. Notably, Goldman Sachs is breaking records with a $16.5 billion bonus pool. That is roughly $622,000 per employee but some employees do better than others: "[Goldman CEO] Lloyd Blankfein, for one, will probably earn a measly $50 million (loser), whereas Morgan Sze (big man on campus), head of GS's principal strategies group in Hong Kong will go home with a check around twice that." Anyway, whether you're a $120K secretary or a $100M trader, author Michael Lewis has some some tongue-in-cheek advice for dealing with poorer relations.
posted by blue mustard at 12:19 PM PST - 46 comments

"Your daily source for wonderful stuff."

Grandma's Kitchen (youtube), the Roller Toaster, the water-less washing machine, the sculptures of Gwon Osong, a crucifix-shaped mp3 player... some of the people and things found on CubeMe, a blog about "wonderful stuff".
posted by dobbs at 11:07 AM PST - 13 comments

The Human Race

"Welcome to The Human Race. Our system has been updated. You can now spend your entire life on hold."
posted by mongonikol at 9:57 AM PST - 16 comments

Death Never Looked this Delicious!

Drop Dead Gorgeous a Photo Gallery of not so safe treats by Daniela Edburg. (via the morning news)
posted by Dreamghost at 8:03 AM PST - 45 comments

At home he still plays with his organ from time to time

Procol Harum organist wins battle over joint authorship of A Whiter Shade of Pale. Gary Brooker is not amused, but then again it was a Bach ripoff anyway.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:59 AM PST - 31 comments

Dashing through the snow !

Tired of putting your bike away for the winter? Try Ski-biking! Here's a brief history. You won't be alone, there are even official associations: American, Canadian and British. You can mod your current Mountain Bike, make your own, or buy a custom design. If you want to be the King of the Hill though, you will need one of these.
posted by lobstah at 7:34 AM PST - 9 comments


The Society for the Protection and Preservation of Fruitcake - Fruitcake, much maligned, the butt of many jokes and practical jokes - and yet much esteemed by many, and an important part of many folks' holiday tradition and ritual. Thought we could explore some links on the subject. I think we could all learn to love this wonderful cake and appreciate its fine fruity nature.
posted by caddis at 7:01 AM PST - 41 comments

Political Junk on eBay

Weird political junk on eBay. Traffic lights from Dealey Plaza, President Garfield's funeral shroud, Yitzhak Rabin's Scandalous Greek Vase. And here is the boat which Brezhnev gave Nixon (after Nixon gave him a Cadillac). No bids yet at $1m.
posted by tombola at 6:08 AM PST - 7 comments

Billions and Billions... of Blog Posts

Carl Sagan has a posse. Today marks the ten year anniversary of the passing of Carl Sagan, scientist and popularizer of science, and bloggers are planning to mark the day with posts about the man and how he's affected their lives. The initiative has the blessing of at least one member of the Sagan clan, and has already spawned a site where those without blogs of their own can post their thoughts online. Yes, Sagan could be prickly at times, and there might have been things he could have been more open about in his lifetime. But few scientists have done more to bring science to the public. These days, we could use another of him. Maybe two.
posted by jscalzi at 3:27 AM PST - 43 comments

Music Geek Masturbatory Manuals

Pitchfork has unveiled their Top 50 Albums of 2006 (don't also miss their Top 100 Tracks of 2006). Rolling Stone's Top 50. Prefix's Top 50. Stylus's Top 50. For those who love these lists, the deluge has only begun...
posted by Mach3avelli at 1:40 AM PST - 176 comments

December 19

Completing the circle on ignorant loonbaggery

"And guess what software Osama Bin Laden uses on his laptop?"
posted by docgonzo at 9:39 PM PST - 78 comments

The Ultimate Christmas Video Collection

101 Classic Christmas Videos The winter solstice is nearing, and Rudolph's on his way. So whether you're celebrating Festivus, or just being a blockhead, why not kick back with a nice glass of egg nog and a holiday classic?
posted by dhammond at 9:28 PM PST - 15 comments

Simple and direct.

The Stick and the Stack may be stuck. NASA's Project Constellation is the effort to rebuild the manned spacecraft program after nearly thirty years of flying the Shuttle. While the mighty Ares V, the big brother of the pair, seems to be working out on paper, the stick, Ares 1 is running into real trouble, as even with a longer first stage booster, it may not be able to loft the new Orion Crew Vehicle. Now, a group of NASA engineers, with one private person acting as the public face, say that there's a simpler, more DIRECT way.
posted by eriko at 6:00 PM PST - 46 comments

*insert loon call here*

The late Dan Gibson: Pioneering wildlife documentarian and sound archivist. Inventor of the Dan Gibson Parabolic Microphone. Musician. Order of Canada recipient. All-around good guy.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:27 PM PST - 6 comments

MetaFilter: Across the 8th Dimension!

See this glass. It's solid matter, right? See this glass. It's solid matter, right? But in point of fact, the solid parts of this glass --the protons, quarks, your neutrons and electrons -they comprise only one quadrillionth of its total volume. The science behind Buckaroo Banzai and the Oscillation Overthruster (via)
posted by lekvar at 2:02 PM PST - 61 comments

It was a funny looking bird and he stood right before my eyes / With a space suit and a laser-gun he was only passing by...

Videokids - Woodpeckers From Space (youtube) Test your mettle - try to watch the whole thing.
posted by hypocritical ross at 1:53 PM PST - 23 comments

Hodgman + Free = Yay!

MeFite John Hodgman's latest book, The Areas of My Expertise, is free through iTunes today.
posted by keswick at 1:38 PM PST - 75 comments

That bad man, Stack O' Lee.

One Christmas night in a bar in the Third Ward in St. Louis, Missouri, "Stag" Lee Shelton shot Billy Lyon (cache) in a argument over a hat. This simple crime went on to inspire a song that lives on after more than one hundred years. (more inside)
posted by 1f2frfbf at 12:20 PM PST - 45 comments

MySpace for artists

Meet Stuart, the new mySpace-like networking site for Student Artists created by Saatchi and Saatchi. (discovered through the NYT).
posted by jacalata at 11:57 AM PST - 23 comments

Google's Firefox Browser Sync

I use several different computers in the same day; my work machine, my laptop, my home machine. I've bitched for years that I shouldn't have to struggle to keep my bookmarks synced between machines. Google to the rescue with the best Christmas present ever.
posted by talldean at 10:10 AM PST - 74 comments

the other internal arts

pa-kua was developed during the late 18th century and disseminated heavily during the Boxer rebellion; XingYi and Bagua are known for fluidity and ferocity. Some great sites, forums and some compulsory youtube links (2nd old man does bagua form) of masters and teachers of the art.
posted by sarcasman at 9:47 AM PST - 79 comments

like, you know, totally

iliketotallyloveit is what you get if you apply the digg algorithm to stuff. Users submit their favorite stuff, new or old, and if enough other members agree with its awesomeness their favorite gets posted to the front page (along with where to buy it, of course).
posted by mendel at 9:32 AM PST - 16 comments

There There.

A memorial to the many dead. Here in Oakland, California, the murder rate has gone out of control. The incoming mayor has not articulated any clear plan for reducing violence. And the current one, having only seen violence increase here, is going on to become the state Attorney General. Amid the challenges Oaklanders face - gentrification, a lack of meaningful work opportunities, and a history of a devistating drug trade, there are some efforts to make change: here, here, here, and here.
posted by serazin at 9:01 AM PST - 58 comments

Have you seen the staff photos??

Remember Ted Haggard? In addition to a Denver pastor recently stepping down amid gay sex allegations, now a colleague of Haggard's at New Life Church has been dismissed for "one instance of consensual sexual contact with another unmarried adult several years ago." Whatever that means.
posted by mattbucher at 7:55 AM PST - 313 comments

mats interview

shaved eyebrows
posted by vronsky at 6:11 AM PST - 73 comments

Medics face death in Libyan HIV case

Death by firing squad is imminent (timeline) for a Palestinian doctor and five Bulgarian nurses accused of infecting 426 girls and boys at the al-Fatah Hospital in Benghazi with HIV, after having the sentence lifted a year ago and sent to retrial. Libya stands accused of using the children as diplomatic pawns and torturing confessions out of the health workers. Nature has published a series of articles refuting the dubious evidence provided by Libyan researchers, which many think was concocted to cover up the poor hospital hygiene that likely caused the infections in the first place. [previously]
posted by blendor at 3:03 AM PST - 35 comments

US Army Counter-insurgency manual

So, you want to run a counter-insurgency? (Large .pdf of the current US Army counter-insurgency manual.)
posted by wilful at 2:57 AM PST - 58 comments

Keeping your Chinook up

Who was the most dominant athlete of all time? If athletes include draughts players then Marion Tinsley makes a good candidate, losing but 7 games plus 2 more to a computer over the course of a 45 year career. [more inside]
posted by Chuckly at 2:44 AM PST - 42 comments

December 18

Online Rock Guitar Lessons

The Riff-O-Matic will help you learn to play rock & roll guitar, or at the very least, will help you play several of the most famous riffs in rock & roll history. Using a combination of sheet music, tablature notation & embedded (flash) audio & (windowsmedia) video, the site will get you up & playing the intro to Stairway to Heaven in the guitar store in no time. If you don't have time to learn whole songs, there's even an abridged list of the 10 Greatest Rock Riffs of All Time.
posted by jonson at 11:21 PM PST - 35 comments

Temple Grandin

The Woman Who Thinks Like A Cow. A documentary about Temple Grandin (previously discussed here and here.) [Via MindHacks.]
posted by homunculus at 9:18 PM PST - 42 comments

Fly tying extraordinaire

These are not your father's fly tying handiwork. Anglers have been fooling fish with feathers for generations. Graham Owen takes fly tying to the next level with flies that catch fish, and some that even catch more flies.
posted by caddis at 9:18 PM PST - 24 comments

Party Boy in a Cage

Michael Alig , the once-king of the "club kids" speaks with New York magazine regarding his ten years in prison and recent denial of parole.
posted by dr_dank at 8:24 PM PST - 26 comments

Christmas Decorating Obsession

Across America there are those who spend a significant amount of resources – dollars, time and energy consumption – to erect Christmas displays that attract hoards of drive-by visitors during the holiday season. In some places there are community websites dedicated to the pursuit of providing coordinated Christmas displays of lights and music in neighborhoods. PlanetChristmas is “THE place to learn from others how to create great Christmas displays for you and your community.” Show off your Christmas display.
posted by ericb at 8:00 PM PST - 33 comments

Are Carbon Offsets Real?

It may feel hip to go carbon neutral, but are carbon offsets real? Now you can find out by reading Clean Air Cool Planet's Consumer's Guide to Carbon Offsets which asseses 30 providers of carbon neutrality and sets out criteria for understanding which are doing the best to help you save the planet. The consumer's guide reads more like an enviro geeks master's thesis, but it quickly becomes clear that the core of the matter is additionality, i.e. to what extent will this investment create emission reductions in addition to those that would have occured in its absence. If this is all too much for you and just want to cut to chase and save the world, you should just take the pledge at Treasure Our Planet. It's pretty simple stuff.
posted by alms at 7:50 PM PST - 12 comments

The hills (and everything else) are alive...

The idea of treating everyday, ambient noise as music is not terribly new, but Noah Vawter's device turns ambient sounds into music (in a somewhat more traditional sense of the word):
Ambient Addition is a Walkman with binaural microphones. A tiny Digital Signal Processing (DSP) chip analyzes the microphone's sound and superimposes a layer of harmony and rhythm on top of the listener's world.
posted by 2or3whiskeysodas at 7:43 PM PST - 32 comments

A Praire Pompei.

"Hundreds of skeletons of prehistoric animals have been found in a volcanic ash bed buried beneath the rolling farmlands of northeastern Nebraska. Some of the best-preserved fossil rhinos, horses, camels, and birds known anywhere have been, and are being, excavated by museum crews working in the Ashfall Fossil Beds in northern Antelope County." [*]Guide from the Nebraska Game and Parks with a quick video tour [*]More information from Nebraska's NET page [*]Wikipedia Link [*] Photos from a Field Trip of Geologists
posted by j-urb at 6:43 PM PST - 19 comments

Control of a Humanoid Robot By Means Of A Brain-Computer Interface

Dr. Rajesh Rao of the University of Washington has created a brain-computer interface that allows a human to control a small humanoid robot (video link) through brain activity alone.
posted by jason's_planet at 5:57 PM PST - 19 comments

Rest in peace, Joe Barbera

The last of the great animation directors has died. Joe Barbera was half of the Hanna-Barbera duo that created the Oscar-winning Tom and Jerry cartoons for MGM. When that studio closed, they learned how to do cartoons for television on a much smaller budget, and gave us so many memorable characters. Mark Evanier worked for Barbera, and is sharing his memories on his always excellent blog.
posted by evilcolonel at 5:35 PM PST - 76 comments


posted by hama7 at 5:15 PM PST - 9 comments

Letters....from SPACE!

Have you ever wondered what cosmonauts eat? What ISS astronauts do all day? What we can see from orbit? Ed Lu, The first American to launch and land on a Soyuz spacecraft, kept what is arguably the first space blog while spending an 184 days on the International Space Station with cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko in 2003.
posted by muddgirl at 4:09 PM PST - 21 comments

A flash story

Days in a day [flash]. The story finishes once the notebook is completed.
posted by tellurian at 4:01 PM PST - 6 comments

0118 999 881 999 119 7253

The IT Crowd is a sitcom produced for Channel 4. Although it follows the traditional laugh-track sitcom format, it manages to have some really funny moments. Season one was only six episodes, but season 2 is due to start this January. Chris Morris is particularly good as the CEO, Denholm. Full episodes can be found on YouTube and Google Video.
posted by cmicali at 2:54 PM PST - 62 comments

"One side has power, and one side does not"

A Mall Divided (youtube) - a musical tale of commerce, employment and electrical distribution for our times.
posted by Artw at 2:51 PM PST - 8 comments

Regarding Paramount Records

...In 1924 New York Recording Laboratory decided to expand its reach into that market by purchasing the Black Swan label. Founded in 1920 or 1921 by black entrepreneur Harry H. Pace, the pioneering company recorded everything from ragtime to grand opera, as long as it was sung by African-Americans... Paramount's biggest star was Ma Rainey, a blues moaner who influenced the legendary singer Bessie Smith... Paramount did not neglect male blues singers, who tended to be folk artists in the sense that their music was made initially for the entertainment of isolated rural communities. These included the singers and guitarists Charlie Patton... Blind Lemon Jefferson...
Compliments of the Season from ParamountsHome--where, among many other things, one can find an online copy of David Evans's biography Charley Patton in Parts 1, 2 and 3 or look at a picture of Skip James in 1932, not to mention a view of Paramount's promotion of Patton as the Masked Marvel. And that is not, as they say, all...
posted by y2karl at 1:31 PM PST - 13 comments

...but what do they give you for nausea?

Inside Surgery, Dr. Lisa Marcucci's surgical blog, will give you a lovely preview of exactly what they'll be doing to your guts, from gallbladder surgery to appendectomy, artery plaque removal, hemorrhoid removal, and more. Supplement the text with this extensive collection of surgical videos (NSFW), and you'll be ready to operate -- or, at least, to understand what'll go on during your operation.
posted by vorfeed at 12:39 PM PST - 17 comments

wry insight

Roz Chast, noted New Yorker cartoonist with a penchant for sly wordplay, interviewed [embedded video] by Steve Martin. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 11:04 AM PST - 15 comments

A New Look for Archie

Comic and cartoon, much parodied and subject to strange crossovers, Archie and Riverdale are getting a new look. (via Waxy.)
posted by interrobang at 8:48 AM PST - 100 comments

Extreme Resolution Photography

xRez: Extreme Resolution Photography. Gigapixel photos with a Google Maps-style interface. The photo of Boston is 95,000 by 40,000 pixels. [via]
posted by kirkaracha at 7:25 AM PST - 34 comments

Phriendly philm philosophy

Metaphilm is the place to come for insights on (mostly) contemporary films, be they the interesting Punch-Drunk Love as postfeminist male's narrative and Nietzsche and the Meaning of Noir or the not-quite-so-interesting-but-certainly-interesting Identity as primer on Jacques Lacan. Once you've gotten past all the ph-instead-of-f spelling and exhausted the archives, be sure to play around with the Movie Mapper to find what scenes in film have taken place where. (two Metaphilm essays previously discussed here and here.)
posted by shakespeherian at 12:24 AM PST - 67 comments

December 17

Penguins With Angst

Penguins With Angst is the visual tale of a group of hoodlum penguins who vandalize a grain silo & threaten the life of Santa Claus. Easter Sacrifice is a photostory of the kidnapping of the Easter Bunny & his eventual decapitation by the Dove of Peace. Both art projects courtesy of Exclusionary, the online gallery of Jasper Thomas' work.
posted by jonson at 11:13 PM PST - 10 comments

Australia regain Ashes : 3 ummm .... zero.

Less than 16 months after England claimed the Ashes, Australia reclaim them in three straight test matches. With England's main opening batsman pulling out of the contest due to "stress", and their captain refusing to delay a knee operation so that he would be available, it never really appeared to many that they wanted to face a rematch. Questions must now be raised about what happened to their astounding reverse swing. Chin up lads - at least you and your world-touring Barmy Army can all play with your trumpets again.
posted by DirtyCreature at 9:19 PM PST - 60 comments

Want to Buy a Baseball Stadium?

Detroit's Tiger Stadium is for sale. A final walk-through opportunity takes place Monday, December 18, only for pre-approved corporate bidders. But it won't be re-purposed into condos. My childhood heroes played there, less than a mile from my house, as well as one of the best ever to play the game. After a long history of baseball on Michigan Trumbull (click the "More Photos" icon), the Tigers took their game to a new stadium in 1999.
posted by The Deej at 8:07 PM PST - 20 comments

1: Cut a hole in a box..

A Special Christmas Box (youtube) might get pulled, but here's the official NBC video (which wants to resize your browser) of the newest SNL Digital Short, featuring Justin Timberlake and Andy Samberg, two guys who know when a gift needs giving.
posted by hypersloth at 7:46 PM PST - 77 comments

The Most Dangerous Roads in the World

The Most Dangerous Roads in the World
posted by deern the headlice at 7:36 PM PST - 79 comments

What a dish!

Beautiful Petri Gardens
posted by machaus at 6:56 PM PST - 19 comments


go elf yourself.
posted by quonsar at 3:58 PM PST - 72 comments

I could give two spits.

Albert Reyes is an artist who saw a chicken in spilled water. He told the New York Times Magazine, "I could do that." The result? Spit art.
posted by landedjentry at 3:37 PM PST - 21 comments

The Natural Arch and Bridge Society

The Natural Arch and Bridge Society has many, many interesting pictures and lots of info.
posted by mediareport at 2:34 PM PST - 8 comments

SPeculator INitiated/Investor Owned/Stranger Owned

SPINLife is a recent phenomenon--rife with regulatory[pdf] debate[pdf]--that finds hedge funds, savvy (and otherwise) investor types, and even Warren Buffet[pdf page 21] placing bets on the death of old people. Free cruises, kindly telemarketers offering $50,000 checks? Sure, just sign your life(insurance) over to us!
posted by jckll at 11:17 AM PST - 16 comments

Stop cooking with cheese!

Here in Canada, the dairy farmers' association had been promoting the buying of cheese and cooking with cheese, running a series of reverse-psychology TV commercials. The most memorable part from the commercials, the crotchety granny screaming "Can't get your kids to leave home? Stop cooking with cheese!", had already gone viral, as evidenced by these two fan-videos on youtube. But, alas, it looks like the Screaming Cheese Lady's days are numbered. Canada's dairy farmers have halted their "Stop cooking with cheese" advertising campaign after a wave of complaints about their latest TV ad.
posted by Quiplash at 7:23 AM PST - 78 comments

On your mark ... get set ... drawer

Drawer Geeks is an illustration challenge founded by Greg Hardin. Alternate Fridays, a group of 25+ professional animators, illustrators, cartoonists, and designers riff on a given fictional character. This past week's theme was Santa Claus. Among archived themes, I particularly liked: Medusa and The Grim Reaper. (via diminished Responsibility)
posted by madamjujujive at 7:06 AM PST - 33 comments

Ub Iwerks

He had an awesome name for an animator. He created Mickey Mouse. He won two Academy Awards. He invented rotoscoping. Now he is mostly forgotten, except among cartoon aficionados. Also forgotten: Flip the Frog. He was Ub Iwerks.
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:38 AM PST - 27 comments


Let's hear it for SID.
The MOS 6581 SID was the voice box of the famed Commodore 64, and an inimitable speck of silicon that to this day sparks musical imagination and techno tinkering (YouTube). Reborn as a commercial synth, and remade in software (PC|MAC), the original SID chip is still employed by musicians for its 8-bit crunch, and a retro warmth that may charm you back into childhood.
Have an old Commodore in the basement? Know how to solder? As a project for 2K7, why not DIY a SID box with MIDI?
posted by kid ichorous at 1:10 AM PST - 29 comments

Panem et circenses -- MSG style!

Fire Isiah! Sell the Knicks, Dolan!
posted by phaedon at 12:43 AM PST - 30 comments

December 16

You are here.

You may have seen this excellent map of the internet from xkcd. Still lost? You are here.
posted by loquacious at 9:40 PM PST - 26 comments

Save a sheep, don't use insulin.

Possible cure for diabetes. Researchers at Toronto's Hospital for Sick Kids have made an extraordinary breakthrough in diabetes treatment - one which may save hundreds of thousands of lives every year and save thousands more diabetes sufferers from cardiovascular disease, blindness, kidney failure, and nerve damage.
posted by Dipsomaniac at 8:35 PM PST - 65 comments

William Zantzinger Killed Poor Hattie Carroll

(youtube) William Zantzinger killed poor Hattie Caroll, although there were some inaccuracies in Dylan's song. Leopards don't change their stripes (but you'll have to scroll down about halfway through that article to see what became of old Billy boy).
posted by John of Michigan at 7:19 PM PST - 9 comments

What you need is a good butt cleansing!

Per request: Do you suffer from acne, bad breath, bloating, belching, constipation, diarrhea, digestive problems, allergies, fatigue, hair loss, decreased energy, headache, heartburn, gas, indigestion, insomnia, low energy, low sex drive, poor sexual performance, poor memory, protruding gut, reduced resistance to infections, skin problems, weight gain, difficulty losing weight or trimming down your waistline, colds, flu, cancer, cardiovascular disease, or arthritis? Well, then maybe you need a good colon cleansing. Some say it works, some say it's bunk. One such product offers stunning examples of what you might expel (many of these links are NSFW or for the squeamish)
posted by c:\awesome at 7:14 PM PST - 113 comments

hurf durf book eater

"Learn me to read, book lady.... Please if you learn me, I won't be lonesome any more. I broke my back last year. It wan't mended yet." A look at WPA Travelling Libraries. See also: Free traveling libraries (Wisconsin), Lighthouse libraries (Coastal U.S.), Blue Trunk Medical Libraries (Africa), Bus Libraries (China), a few miscellaneous mobile libraries, and this one from the 16th Century. And yes, there's some YouTube.
posted by jessamyn at 7:07 PM PST - 10 comments

Whattaya doin'? Go turn on my tree!

It's all about the tree. (YouTube)
posted by exlotuseater at 5:56 PM PST - 23 comments

But I Want a New Yacht

Scraping By on $150K a Year
My heart bleeds for people who earn a six figure income but are still dirt poor. In a skewed distribution model with the median income ($43,000 in 2002) being in Salina, Kansas and moving a mile east or west for each $1000 above or below that median, the Bush's would be four states away in Columbus, Ohio and the average CEO would be in....Kabul, Afghanistan. The top 400 incomes would be three quarters of the way to the moon. From a 2003 article at Alternet so they're probably beyond the moon now and on their way to Mars. From 1979 to 1997, the average annual income of the top 1% (after taxes) increased by 157% (or $414,000) while the poorest 20% went down by $100.
posted by fenriq at 5:03 PM PST - 68 comments

Cool Timelapse Videos

Tlapse is the corporate YouTube account of GBTimelapse software, who are promoting their product by posting a series of really interesting timelapse films. Favorites so far are: Pumpkin, Watermelon & Bananas, but maybe I just have a decomposing fruit fetish. Although, this one of the world's laziest cat enjoying another productive day isn't bad either.
posted by jonson at 4:35 PM PST - 12 comments


Penguins offer evidence of global warming another indicator of climate change.
posted by hard rain at 3:34 PM PST - 20 comments

Bunny Express

This bunny is a letter opener. (video)
posted by four panels at 2:42 PM PST - 22 comments

At what cost?

Rescuers plan biggest search yet, using helicopters, a C-130 aircraft, infrared equipment, and scores of volunteers to search for 3 climbers trapped on Mt. Hood. But at what cost in dollars and lives? A 1998 rescue of two climbers on Mt. McKinley cost $221,818. And Mt. Hood is no stranger to climbing accidents: in 2002, an Air Force helicopter crashed [youtube] while trying to rescue nine climbers swept into a crevasse. Is it time to revisit the debate over who should pay for dangerous, high-profile mountain rescues? [More inside]
posted by googly at 9:06 AM PST - 185 comments

Open source markets

Prediction markets trade uncertainty for collective wisdom, and have been proven to be more accurate than other mechanisms for predicting outcomes such as polls. Many corporate entities (HP, Intel, Google, Yahoo, Siemens, etc.) are said to be using them internally. Several successful prediction markets already exist, such as Hedgestreet, NewsFutures, the Iowa Electronic Markets, Hollywood Stock Exchange, and Inkling Markets. A spinoff of DARPA's Policy Analysis Market, prediction markets might be to markets what open source was to software.
posted by localhuman at 8:17 AM PST - 18 comments

How to Win in Iraq for Dummies

Capt. Travis Patriquin's PowerPoint presentation (.pdf file) is a guide to victory in Anbar province. But But Patriquin will not see victory in Iraq. He was killed by [an] improvised explosive device last Wednesday.
posted by spitbull at 7:14 AM PST - 40 comments

Dersh & Bolt

Dershowitz & Bolton team up to call for the prosecution of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
posted by pwedza at 1:24 AM PST - 47 comments

December 15

Botflies redux.

Man pulls botfly larva from his own stomach. Previously, from head. From eye (Snopes, w/pictures). Wikipedia.
posted by unSane at 9:29 PM PST - 64 comments

Blair defends Saudi probe ruling

So much for Democracy, Tony Blair has hit back at claims a corruption probe into a Saudi arms deal with BAE Systems was dropped after commercial and political pressure.
posted by zouhair at 8:58 PM PST - 38 comments

"This is a long story, it rambles a bit, and it has a punchline."

Colleen Doran, a comics creator that's collaborated with Neil Gaiman, Warren Ellis, and J Michael Straczynski, blogs about her experiences while publishing her epic A Distant Soil with Starblaze Graphics in the 80s. Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5
posted by beaucoupkevin at 7:56 PM PST - 11 comments

Anders als die Andern

Anders als die Andern ("Different From the Others") [IMDB|Wikipedia] was one of a series of films on sexual issues directed by Richard Oswald in the late 1910s and sponsored by Magnus Hirschfeld's Institute for Sexual Science. The 1919 movie (photo reconstruction), "the first major gay-themed film ever made," and "the world's first homosexual emancipation film," was made in part to protest against Paragraph 175, which was added to Germany's Reich Penal Code in 1871 and prohibited sex acts "between persons of male sex." [more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 5:08 PM PST - 10 comments

Kinda like Tailspin, but as a game...

Skyrates, pronounced like "pirates," is a new flash game currently open for beta testing. Designed by a group of seven students at Carnegie Mellon University, the concept was to create an MMORPG that you could simply check on every few hours throughout the day, like you would with your e-mail. The outcome is a simple but enveloping, and somewhat silly game that manages to be addictive as hell while only taking up a few minutes per day. (plus it's free.)
posted by Navelgazer at 3:58 PM PST - 78 comments

"And now on BBC 2 - the Open University".

The Open University was founded in 1971 in the "white heat" of the communications revolution. Late-night lectures delivered over the television would revolutionise education - but they quickly became a much-loved/much-mocked UK icon, ideal for insomniacs (it was all that was on telly at that time of night), and replete with kipper ties, beards and Periodic tables. They also helped to inspire some affectionate piss takes and spoofs. This weekend the OU will broadcast its last ever TV documentary - from now on they will be sticking to DVDs and the internet. Last link goes to embedded BBC News video.
posted by greycap at 3:32 PM PST - 10 comments

Stamping the root of evil

Rubber-stamped money collection with numerous political pushing ("Jews for Clinton", "GORE 2004"), advocacy ("LESBIAN $$$"), and advertising (""...can we have MoneyFilter?).
posted by Kickstart70 at 2:53 PM PST - 23 comments

Obesity and Diabetes

Obesity and Diabetes - another free supplement by Nature
posted by Gyan at 2:34 PM PST - 17 comments

There was a ghastly Trial once/Of a dead man by a live man, and both, Popes.

The Cadaver Synod is a episode from Church history they don't teach you in Sunday school.
The trial began when the disinterred corpse of Formosus was carried into the courtroom. On Stephen VII's orders the putrescent corpse, which had been lying in its tomb for seven months, had been dressed in full pontifical vestments. The dead body was then propped up in a chair behind which stood a teenage deacon, quaking with fear, whose unenviable responsibility was to defend Formosus by speaking in his behalf. ... Stephen VII screamed and raved, hurling insults at and mocking the rotting corpse. Occasionally, when the furious torrent of execrations and maledictions would die down momentarily, the deacon would stammer out a few words weakly denying the charges ... The sentence imposed by Stephen VII was that all Formosus's acts and ordinations as pope be invalidated, that the three fingers of Formosus's right hand used to give papal blessings be hacked off, and that the body be stripped of its papal vestments, clad in the cheap garments of a lay person, and buried in a common grave.
Perhaps you prefer a cartoon version or the classic poetry of Robert Browning.
posted by nasreddin at 2:10 PM PST - 31 comments

Goodbye, Lou.

In 1973, Berlin, Lou Reed’s somber follow-up to his upbeat, glam-rock Transformer, was described by Rolling Stone as “a disaster,” by others as “horseshit,” and was never performed live — until now.
posted by ijoshua at 1:00 PM PST - 22 comments


Meteorfilter: Meteorite's Organic Matter Older Than The Sun.
posted by Rufus T. Firefly at 12:25 PM PST - 29 comments

Reactions to the Iraq Study Group report

Getting out of Iraq: the Iraq Study Group report recommended talking to Iran and Syria, and making continued US military and economic support conditional on progress by the Iraqi government. "U.S. foreign policy is doomed to failure—as is any course of action in Iraq—if it is not supported by a broad, sustained consensus. The aim of our report is to move our country toward such a consensus." Reaction from Democrats has been generally positive; reaction from Republicans has been divided between moderates and hawks (the New York Post called Baker and Hamilton "surrender monkeys"). Bush quickly rejected talks with Iran and Syria. The White House has been arguing about how to proceed. Previously.
posted by russilwvong at 12:07 PM PST - 50 comments

Where puzzles and pagans play

posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:58 AM PST - 11 comments

Gay and Lesbian Europe in the 30s and 40s

A multimedia exhibit on the Nazi persecution of homosexuals, Wikipedia on gays under the Nazis, Paragraph 175 - a documentary profiling gay survivors of Nazi era policies, and memorials of the gay Holocaust. A few Nazi-era gay and lesbian figures of note:

- A Berlin intellectual and pioneer in sexuality research, and an early advocate for gay rights, (controversial in part for his early support of outing) Magnus Herschfeld died in exile after Nazis destroyed his Institute of Sexual Science.
- The butch orchestra conductor Frieda Belinfante and gay artist William Arondeus were part of the same resistance group that first falsified papers for Dutch Jews, and then when Nazi's began to compare these falsified papers with city records, set fire to the Amsterdam Registry building.
- Lily Wust, the wife of a German soldier, fell for a Jewish woman at the wrong time. Their story became the subject of a book and film.
posted by serazin at 11:58 AM PST - 26 comments

Who's afraid of Obama?

“President Barack Hussein Obama – it does have a ring to it, doesn't it?” – Who’s hot for (and who’s not for) America’s up-and-coming presidential wonderboy.
posted by Milkman Dan at 11:55 AM PST - 112 comments

Numbers Give Me A Geek Woody

US Census Bureau Facts & Figures: Holiday Edition says that more than 20 billion letters, packages and cards will be delivered this holiday season and 12 million packages a day through to Christmas Eve. Also check out the Special Edition for comparison data from 1915, 1967 and 2006, the African-American History Month Facts & Features and more data going back to 2000.
posted by fenriq at 11:44 AM PST - 4 comments

It's easy being green

What do reindeer do when they're not flying around the world delivering presents? They graze, burp and fart! Did you know? Together, Santa's nine reindeer - Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen and Rudolph - produce 3.75 tonnes of greenhouse gas pollution per year. We guarantee that if you choose to offset the pollution created by Santa's reindeer, we will reduce CO2 pollution by 3.75 tonnes. Just $75AU. (via)
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 11:32 AM PST - 8 comments

It's A Wonderful Life. It's A Subversive Film

The most inspirational film ever has an underexamined dark side, including a 1947 FBI memo that branded the film as subversive and "a rather obvious attempt to discredit bankers." The film's script was influenced by the liberal populism of the 1930s, used suicide as a plot point, and was criticized by a Christian Right website for "lax attitudes on alcohol and drunkenness." The film also inspired a feminist art project on "bad girl" Violet Bick and a dead-on parody of a right-wing Christian movie review. Meanwhile, Jimmy Stewart paid back Frank Capra for reviving his post-WWII career by spying on him for the FBI. The hidden backstory behind It's A Wonderful Life.
posted by jonp72 at 11:03 AM PST - 66 comments

A weekend that will have them second-guessing

"Heavy set, older, red heads and even black chicks can have me if they can pay the bill. No real female will be refused." The director of a film Roger Ebert initially claimed was less entertaining than a colonoscopy (though he recanted after it was recut) is offering the perfect Christmas gift.
posted by hifiparasol at 10:22 AM PST - 74 comments

How Ironical

Border Fence Firm Snared for Hiring Illegal Workers
posted by analogue at 10:03 AM PST - 49 comments


Find new artists similar to the ones you like using this Flash navigatable map based on data from The site is owned by EMI but artists not under contract by EMI are shown too, although not as exensively.
posted by jouke at 9:59 AM PST - 26 comments

You can't get there from here.

On May 17, 1995, Shawn Nelson stole a tank and took it for a little drive (Google Video, YouTube).
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:49 AM PST - 36 comments

Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake

The Small Faces discuss the making of Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake.
posted by johnny novak at 9:19 AM PST - 7 comments

Music TV

I want my MTV. MTV is now mostly reality, titillation TV, rarely showing music videos anymore. YouTube fills the void somewhat, but sometimes you want to just sit back and let someone else take care of the programming. MusicPlusTV is sort of like the old MTV, but they stream to your computer instead of to your TV.
posted by caddis at 8:18 AM PST - 23 comments

Sweet Soul Music

Ahmet Ertegun, 1923-2006. Co-founder of Atlantic Records, 83 year-old Ertegun had been in a coma since he fell backstage at a concert by The Rolling Stones at Beacon Theatre, NYC, in October. Very comprehensive obit -- more complete than either the one in Variety or New York Times -- to be found in UK's Guardian
posted by Mister Bijou at 7:44 AM PST - 23 comments

The dolphin is eating the tank again. Call Bao Xishun!

The world's tallest man saved a dolphin by reaching into its stomach to retrieve plastic the dolphin had eaten. Bao Xishun, the world's tallest man at 7' 8.95" (2m, 36.1cm), is a herdsman from Inner Mongolia and is just naturally tall, not suffering from acromegaly or gigantism. At least there's some good dolphin-related news coming out of China. (Previously.)
posted by nekton at 7:08 AM PST - 39 comments


Attraction is not a choice as the saying goes in the PUA community, and their main discussion forum provides plenty of instruction on meeting and seducing women. Stop asking the questions of an AFC and step into a whole different level of male/female interactions. Instead of pickup lines and techniques, start reading the field reports posted by new and veteran PUAs. (via)
posted by Tasty Like Your 9V Battery at 6:54 AM PST - 194 comments

Rising Bollard Revue

Rising bollards in the middle of the road are becoming more used in the UK to physically enforce traffic restrictions, such as roads open only to buses and taxis. But some drivers in Manchester think the law doesn't apply to them. See what happens when they try to tailgate behind authorized vehicles. Also, see a video of what happens when a loaded lorry is rammed into an anti-terrorist rising bollard at full speed.
posted by grouse at 3:55 AM PST - 127 comments

Vintage Cultural Ephemera lives on via Flickr

Fans of Vintage Cultural Ephemera Rejoice!

Illustration and print design of the 1920s-30s
Cold War Propaganda (on both sides)
Illustration and print design of the forties
Vintage cigarrette advertising
Sheet Music of the 1800s - 1950s
Out of print cookbooks
7-Up advertising (pre 1980s)

All of these (and much more) found via this excellent Flickr Page of Groups administered by cultural archivist Paula Wirth.
posted by jonson at 12:07 AM PST - 15 comments

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

Mom has 12-year-old son arrested for opening christmas present early. And they can keep him 'cause she doesn't want him anymore.
posted by sluglicker at 12:02 AM PST - 43 comments

December 14

The Cliff House Project

The Cliff House was San Francisco Mayor Adolph Sutro's amazing 7-storey Victorian chateau built in 1896 and destroyed by fire in 1907. The Cliff House Project (photos) has a large and absorbing database of related material. [via the indefatigable gmtPlus9 (-15)]
posted by peacay at 10:34 PM PST - 14 comments

Palm Island

Palm Island off Queensland’s stunning north coast is one of the most beautiful places on earth, well maybe not if you’re an Australian Aborigine. Mulrunji Doomadgee, a fit, healthy, 36-year-old man, died in police custody on Palm Island on 19 November 2004 following his arrest by Senior Sergeant Chris Hurley on a charge of "public nuisance". Yet Queensland DPP Leanne Clare has described the death as "a terrible accident’ caused by a ‘complicated fall’. [via subs req’d]
posted by mattoxic at 8:25 PM PST - 10 comments

Boy, do they regret it!

Regret the Error's '06 roundup of the year's best corrections range from proper nomenclature when describing decanter aficianados to how many eggs Queen Elizabeth lays. All the mistakes fit to print.
posted by Bromius at 7:10 PM PST - 12 comments


Riemann's Curve , Airfoils, Complex Roots, More.
posted by Kwantsar at 6:38 PM PST - 18 comments

Jersey caught the gay

The gay. So New Jersey approved civil unions for same-sex relationships joining Connecticut and and Vermont in the CUS-SR club. Need another reason to move to the Garden State? Here's one. And another. Don't worry, we have room for everyone. Er...maybe not.
posted by jourman2 at 6:15 PM PST - 112 comments

Auf Der Walz.

Since the Middle Ages, German craftsmen have gone 'auf der Walz' (taken to the road) as part of a kind of working-pilgrimage that artisans make after completing an apprenticeship with a master craftsman. These travels are meant to teach them about work and life and takes precisely three years and one day; they are not allowed to return home before this time. The trip can take these young craftsmen and women (all must be under the age of 30) halfway around the world (and often does) and they are allowed only a small rucksack. Other than that, they can bring along their uniform (a simple black and white affair that almost defies description), their tools, undergarments, a sleeping bag, a book and their trademark walking stick.

Although today this is a dying tradition, and is often more traditionally known as being a Journeyman today, it still exists and has inspired some to write about the strage travellers they see on the road. Indeed, perhaps the most famous work this tradition inspired is Australian poet Banjo Patterson, whose work Walzing Matilda is believed to have been inspired by this fascinating yet waning custom.
posted by Effigy2000 at 6:11 PM PST - 28 comments

Breast Cancer

The incidence of breast cancer in the U.S. fell by 15% between August 2002 and December 2003. Why? Because starting in the summer of 2002 millions of menopausal women stopped taking hormone replacement therapy. How many women would be alive if they'd never started?
posted by alms at 6:02 PM PST - 23 comments

To boldly go, whenever we get around to it...

The government of Canada has just turned down a request that would have seen Canada build the European Space Agency's Mars Rover, even though no additional funding was required. Saying it hasn't made up it's mind about the future of Canada's space role, the government has also let the position of president of the Canadian Space Agency remain vacant for more than a year (after Marc Garneau resigned to run for the Liberal party. The decision has left the ESA scrambling to find a new partner and already has some wondering whether the uncertainty will lead to another Avro Arrow-esque brain drain.
posted by Zinger at 5:59 PM PST - 22 comments


One-billion slum dwellers. An interview with Jockin Arputham who helped set-up Shack/Slum Dwellers International.
posted by tellurian at 5:53 PM PST - 6 comments

Microsoft Live Book Search

Microsoft releases Microsoft Live Search Books (beta), a third major project to scan public domain books behind Google books and the pioneering Content is pre-1927 editions of public domain works. Live Search blog has (slightly) more info and lots of general reactions pro and con.
posted by stbalbach at 5:44 PM PST - 9 comments

The Falsettos - Skip James, Tommy Johnson, Dona Dumitru Siminica & Joe Keawe, among others

Here is a video of one falsetto singer:

Skip James - Devil Got My Woman

More music by and information about Skip James, a Romanian gypsy named Doma Dumitru Siminica, leo ki'eki'e singers Richard & Solomon Ho'opi'i and other Legends of Falsetto within...
posted by y2karl at 4:48 PM PST - 28 comments

Jesus Smurfing Christ!

La Pietà - In 1998, photographer Gregor Podgorski [translation] staged 500 different versions of the work of art made famous by Michelangelo. Ninety-six are available online, including such highlights as Anatomical Pietà, Librarian Pietà, Pietà In Hell, and, of course, Smurf Pietà. Most links NSFW.
posted by Partial Law at 4:33 PM PST - 15 comments

String up the mobius chains.

Happy Anniversary, Quantum Mechanics! "On December 14, 1900, Max Planck presented experimental data at the German Physical Society and said that it could best be explained if energy existed in discrete packets, which he called "quanta." It was on that day that the field of Quantum Physics was effectively born. I call it QM Day and it's the unofficial start of the Agnostica Holiday!"
posted by mystyk at 4:21 PM PST - 16 comments

Best Viral Videos 2006

Best Viral Videos 2006.
posted by hama7 at 3:58 PM PST - 40 comments

Kill Dash Nine

Kill Dash Nine by Monzy, the next big thing in Nerdcore. Wired interviews some of the figures, including the better known MC Plus+ (previously). Monzy's latest clever, well-informed lyrics stand in stark contrast to Weird Al's latest proof that he wouldn't know a geek if he bit one's head off.[1]
posted by dmd at 3:52 PM PST - 27 comments

Stare with your ears

Word Jazz podcast: Ken Nordine (wiki) not only has a blog (of sorts), but is podcasting parts of the ineffable Word Jazz. The net just got a little cooler.
posted by edgeways at 3:41 PM PST - 11 comments

Coffee nerds!

Is it possible to make truly excellent coffee or even espresso at home? Are fancy machines necessary? Dethroner is doing a theme week about coffee with a guestblogging pro coffee nerd dispensing some dense yet practical advice about beans and brewing. Don't miss the latte art video which makes it look so easy.
posted by the_ill_gino at 2:04 PM PST - 29 comments

Henry Rollins on Net Neutrality and Freedom of Speech

Oh, Henry! Soft spoken Henry Rollins says a few words about internet freedom. (NSFW)
posted by birdhaus at 11:57 AM PST - 208 comments

"Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are."

A sampling of the range of medieval and 18th C. European diets from Michael de Leone's Ein Buch von Guter Speise and Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin's Physiologie du goût (The Physiology of Taste).
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:47 AM PST - 7 comments

Ass painting

Art teacher in Richmond, VA suspended after his students found a video on YouTube of him painting with his ass.
posted by Nathanial Hörnblowér at 11:34 AM PST - 39 comments

Andromeda Straining belief

This appears to be a new low for Michael Crichton, a moderately scary guy who's already caused some head-scratching in these parts. (Main link requires reg. Summary here. via)
posted by gurple at 11:04 AM PST - 106 comments

You can divide my labour, anytime

Harvard Economists design a recruitment video. It is unintentionally funny. Students make it even funnier.
posted by Alex404 at 9:57 AM PST - 18 comments

John McCain Wants To Regulate Blogs

Senator John McCain (R. - AZ) has introduced legislation [PDF] that would hold blogs responsible for all activity in their comments sections and user profiles. Provisions of the proposed bill include: (1) commercial websites and personal blogs "would be required to report illegal images or videos posted by their users or pay fines of up to $300,000," (2) bloggers with comment sections may face "even stiffer penalties" than ISPs, and (3) any social-networking site must take "effective measures" to remove any Web page that's "associated" with a sex offender. "Because 'social-networking site' isn't defined, it could encompass far more than just, Friendster and similar sites." The list could include any site that allows comments, authot and personal profiles. Kevin Bankston of the Electronic Frontier Foundation notes that this proposal may be based more "on fear or political considerations rather than on the facts." "McCain’s legislation could deal a serious blow to the blogosphere. Lacking resources to police their sites, many individual blogs may have to shut down open discussion."*
posted by ericb at 7:42 AM PST - 141 comments

The Bushmen get to go home!

The Bushmen get to go home! "Lady" Tonge said they were "holding the government of Botswana to ransom" by having the gall to keep on living. Others recognized genocide for what it is. They used the internet to tell us how much they wanted to go home and now, in one of those few moments where something goes right, they can go home.
posted by jefgodesky at 7:21 AM PST - 7 comments

Isn't there anyone out there who can tell me what Christmas is all about?

The Lonely Tree: The Story of a Charlie Brown Christmas (via largehearted boy)
posted by sleepy pete at 6:55 AM PST - 17 comments

Ladies and gentlemen, we interrupt our program of dance music to bring you a special bulletin from the Intercontinental Radio News.

Belgium is no more. Flanders has unilaterally declared independence, and the king has left the country in protest, RTBF reports.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 5:26 AM PST - 54 comments

Pr0n at Work = Addiction?

Pr0n at Work = Addiction? Spawning from such cases as a recent lawsuit with IBM over employee termination due to online sex chatting at work, recent debate over whether Internet abuse is a legitimate addiction, akin to alcoholism, is heating up. Attorneys say recognition by a court—whether in this or some future litigation—that Internet abuse is an uncontrollable addiction, and not just a bad habit, could redefine the condition as a psychological impairment worthy of protection under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Businesses would be required to allow medical leave and provide counseling. The condition could even make it into the next edition of the American Psychiatric Association's DSM, making it a full-blown neurosis. It wouldn't be a complete surprise, with a recent Stanford study showing that 14% of people state it would be "hard to stay away" from the net for a few days in a row.
posted by PreacherTom at 5:05 AM PST - 49 comments

More fun than your to-do list

Palm Art Gallery and showcase art created on PDAs.
posted by teleskiving at 3:33 AM PST - 5 comments

So I showed up and found myself literally standing in the valley of the skanks

Sly talks! Rounds [1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9-10][11][12][13].

Let’s face it; my powers of communication were a little bit below that of a knuckle-dragging, ooze-dwelling cretin from another galaxy. Actually, I haven’t progressed that much. I just lie better. A 13 (so far)-part interview where Rocko/Ramby answers fans with oodles of extremely quotable, self-deprecating, sarcastic one-liners about the (few) ups and (many) downs of a Hollywood career. Tips on: how to get Sharon Stone naked, how to use the 3 seashells, how to direct dancers with a "crotch tartar" problem and how to bench press with owls. We also learn the final truth about some guy named Rocky - an inbred, druid outcast from Stonehenge whose specialty is weaving whistle chains and leaping face down onto pointed objects - and another one named Rambo - a savage turned loose in Microsoft’s headquarters.
posted by elgilito at 2:37 AM PST - 46 comments

December 13

Death ray, fiddlesticks--it doesn't even slow them down.

Google Patent Search
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:55 PM PST - 48 comments

Vito Acconci

Shelley Jackson talks with Vito Acconci VA: "The way I thought of pieces like Following Piece was, there’s a city out there. I attend to this city. How do I key myself into this city. How do I tie myself into this city. I can pick out people in this city to follow."
posted by hard rain at 11:49 PM PST - 2 comments

Support your people

Support your people
posted by theemperorhasnoclotheson at 11:08 PM PST - 24 comments

Daniel Radosh on Alternative Bibles

While the standard King James Bible remains huge business for publishers, in recent years a number of alternative formats have sprung up, hoping to capture the niche Christian dollar, or more charitably, to spread the good word to an audience that wouldn't find the tradtional bible all that relevant. Daniel Radosh's piece in the New Yorker examines the alterna-Bible publishing phenomenon, along with a great slideshow of several in-market concepts.
posted by jonson at 10:38 PM PST - 16 comments

An official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle, with a compass in the stock and 'this thing', which tells time"

The most dangerous toys of all time. Lawn darts? Check. Cabbage Patch Dolls that chewed off your fingers? Check. Working radioactive U-238 Atomic Energy Lab? Check. To spark more memories of holidays past, peruse the 10 weirdest toy ads of all time, and don't forget the Cheap Toy Roundup if you don't have enough cash. Or you could always get a Talking Jesus from Toys for Tots.
posted by blahblahblah at 10:01 PM PST - 62 comments

Winter is No Excuse to Not Ride Your Bike

The KTrak Snowcycle Conversion Kit takes your mountain bike and turns it into a tracked, human-powered snow (or sand) machine, complete with a front ski. Other snow bikes are great at going downhill, like the Hanson Ski-MX Kit or the Winter X Bike Kit, but the KTrak goes up, down and all around.
posted by fenriq at 9:53 PM PST - 21 comments


OPPERATION WAGON TRAIN!!!! The ICE just launched raids of meat packing plants in six states (Nebraska, Iowa, Texas, Utah, Colorado, and Minnesota). Workers are seperated by skin color and the Hispanic looking ones scrutinized. Here in Iowa, an Infant is now without her mother. Just in time for the hollidays
posted by delmoi at 7:14 PM PST - 107 comments

Having eaten God, our heroes return home with the satisfaction of a job well done.

Read Goats. Now in Color! (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) See also: Republicans for Voldemort.
posted by anotherpanacea at 7:11 PM PST - 12 comments

taskphyxiate, miscongesture, flamiscuous

Verbotomy - wordplay: create daily neologisms based on a given definition and illustration. (via Bifurcated Rivets)
posted by madamjujujive at 7:03 PM PST - 18 comments

ho ho ho beard

Santa'd: Flickr's new holiday Easter egg.
posted by brundlefly at 6:32 PM PST - 36 comments

Amamanta Family Dolls

Amamanta Family Dolls offers you a variety of multicultural and educational doll sets that are anatomically correct.
posted by Arcaz Ino at 6:22 PM PST - 16 comments

Levels of Hell

Bad parents suck. Which one of these two situations calls for a deeper banishment in hell? Should it be the mother from Arizona who leaves her 2-yr old in the car with the valet, but brings her dog into the mall? Or should it be the parents from Louisiana who slept through their 6-wk old puppy chewing off their month-old baby's toes?
posted by GatorDavid at 5:49 PM PST - 85 comments

Retro rockets: the good old days that never will be.

Mr. Smith Goes to Venuspart 1CC and part 2CC. Legendary space artist Chesley Bonestell shows us what family vacationsCC should have been like in Coronet Magazine, March 1950. [Click thumbnails for LARGE images.]
posted by cenoxo at 5:21 PM PST - 19 comments

Iraqi refugees

Iraq has become the world's fastest-growing refugee crisis. Life there is a living hell, but the exodus is threatening to destabalize its neighbors. The US accepts only 500 Iraqi refugees a year, but president Bush has the legal authority to admit 20,000 more. Perhaps he'll do it for Christmas. [Via No Quarter.]
posted by homunculus at 5:20 PM PST - 28 comments

Dark Sith Lords who use lightsabers have children who use lightsabers.

Vader Dad. "I learned it by watching you!"
posted by brownpau at 5:16 PM PST - 20 comments

Gun control ten years on.

Australian gun laws claimed to reduce mass shootings. In October, a study prepared by Australian pro-gun lobbyists and published in the British Journal of Criminology argued that tougher gun laws in Australia did little to lower murder or suicide rates. A newly released report agrees that historically declining murder rates were mainly responsible for the decline in average gun homicides from 93 to 56 per annum. In the USA there were approximately 10000 gun homicides in 2004. The report emphasises there have been no mass shootings since the laws were enacted.
posted by bystander at 4:31 PM PST - 36 comments

Music so funky it can gag a maggot.

Swamp Dogg (born Jerry Williams, Jr.), is one of the deepest of the deep soul singers. Described as “Wilson Pickett meets Frank Zappa in a bad mood,” and known for his dubious album covers, his association with the anti-Vietnam movement (allegedly) put him on Nixon’s enemies list. Swamp wrote or co-wrote hits for Gene Pitney, Johnny Paycheck, and a host of others. You might have heard his music in samples on tracks by Talib Kweli [mp3] and the Jurassic 5 [.wmv]. Long out of print, his 1970s albums are now available on CD.
posted by joseph_elmhurst at 4:22 PM PST - 6 comments


TPUG - The Toronto PET User's Group. Founded in 1979 and still holding monthly meetings. For all your "PET, SuperPET, CBM, B128/256/1024, VIC-20, C64, C128, Plus/4, C16, C65 and Amiga" needs.
posted by GuyZero at 2:47 PM PST - 16 comments

Senate Back Up For Grabs?

Newsfilter: The United States Senate may once again be up for grabs. Senator Tim Johnson, D-SD, 60, has reportedly just suffered a stroke and is currently undergoing tests at The George Washington University Medical Center.
posted by The White Hat at 2:40 PM PST - 68 comments

A reason to call in sick tomorrow.

Last night there was a pretty cool coronal ejection that ought to be arriving shortly. When it does, expect Auroral activity as far south as Tennessee. (Or Northern Italy. Or New Zealand.) [Via MonkeyFilter]
posted by absalom at 2:37 PM PST - 35 comments

Angel of Marye's Heights

On December 13, 1862, Sgt. Richard Rowland Kirkland of the 2nd Carolina stood in the Sunken Road at the bottom of Marye's Heights at the Battle of Fredericksburg. The 19-year-old Kirkland was part of Longstreet's First Corps; across from him was Hooker's Center Grand Division, part of the Army of the Potomac under Ambrose Burnside. (More boring history stuff inside.)
posted by forrest at 2:14 PM PST - 26 comments

Live coverage of ISS

Live coverage of NASA attempting to retract the ISS solar panels NASA is attempting to retract up the huge solar panels that spread out either side of the ISS. They fold up concertina-like, like venetian blinds; and like venetian blinds they're getting snagged and hung up. Live tv feeds of the ISS, and you can hear NASA problem-solving on the fly. Absolutely fascinating stuff.
posted by carter at 2:12 PM PST - 22 comments

As long as that monkey with the barrels doesn't show up we might be ok...

"Knytt" is a little pixel platform game that has a suprising amount of ambience in it's simple presentation. You play the Knytt, who was abducted by an alien, and is trying to repair the UFO to get home. Also by the same person, Nifflas, is "Within a Deep Forest" which features "...challenging gameplay, beautiful music, an evil doctor, infinite cuteness, and a deep forest." [more inside]
posted by Zack_Replica at 1:19 PM PST - 17 comments


The best Zimbabwe news site on the world wide web.
posted by Huplescat at 12:53 PM PST - 17 comments

Earth 1977, explained to an alien

Voyager's Golden Record This is life on earth 1977 as it will appear when Voyager 1 meets life (ETA 40.000 years from now)... and finds a turntable. Pioneers 10 and 11, which preceded Voyager, both carried small metal plaques identifying their time and place of origin for the benefit of any other spacefarers that might find them in the distant future. With this example before them, NASA placed a more ambitious message aboard Voyager 1 and 2-a kind of time capsule, intended to communicate a story of our world to extraterrestrials. The Voyager message is carried by a phonograph record-a 12-inch gold-plated copper disk containing sounds and images selected to portray the diversity of life and culture on Earth. Hello, ET!
posted by Bravocharlie at 12:32 PM PST - 34 comments

Some Big Numbers

Millions and Millions (Last pixel sold on Sun, 1 Jan 2006) and Millions (previously) and millions (previously) and Billions and Billions. How many millions How many Billions? Trillion (previously). and remember when Google was just a huge number? A Bajillion? And of course a Brazillian.
posted by Monkey0nCrack at 11:57 AM PST - 24 comments

Teach us, Sprite or Bird/What sweet thoughts are thine...

RavenViewer. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology offers free sound analysis software that allows you to simultaneously listen to and watch spectograms of animal communication, such as the uncanny mimicry of a lovesick Satin Bowerbird or the chilling call of the Common Loon. If birds aren't your bag, there's lots of other animal sounds (and stunning video) to explore.
posted by melissa may at 11:36 AM PST - 13 comments

Who knew?

The WHO says being circumcised significantly reduces a male's risk of HIV infection and recommends male circumcision as part of a "comprehensive prevention package."
posted by thirteenkiller at 11:29 AM PST - 154 comments

lets all . Peter Boyle

ahhh...puttin on the Ritz. this makes me sad.
posted by ShawnString at 10:53 AM PST - 78 comments


Cal Henderson posted this link on superflat artist Chiho Aoshima this morning. With a little research, I found this excellent slideshow. And this, too. Then, I learned about superflat movement founder Takashi Murakami. And then I discovered this superflat commercial anime video.
posted by mongonikol at 9:56 AM PST - 7 comments

Thumb drive drive

Inveneo is a non-profit bringing technology to the developing world. They've got several projects going in Africa to connect, train, and equip villages but their latest push is an interesting one: The Thumb Drive Drive. In the era of $50 2Gb USB drives, many of us probably have discarded 16-128Mb drives sitting around. Send them to Inveneo and they'll get used in places where broadband isn't an option and quick storage is necessary.
posted by mathowie at 9:43 AM PST - 10 comments

Children's Illustration Archive

The children's book illustrators archive. Czeschka - Die Nibelungen; Nielsen - Hansel and Gretel; Goble - Japanese Fairy Tales; Dulac - Arabian Nights; Pavlishin - Folktales of the Amur; Finlay - The Ship of Ishtar; Detmold - The Arabian Nights; Crane - Flora Feast; Kirin - Croatian Tales of Long Ago; Clarke - Poe's Tales of Mystery and Imagination; Collard - British Fairy Tales, and; more Rackham in the gallery then you can shake a pen at.
posted by OmieWise at 9:05 AM PST - 14 comments

Disney, Pixar, Sendak, Go!

In 1983, John Lassetter and Chris Wedge created some test footage that integrated CGI and traditional animation [YouTube] for Disney. The work it was based on? Where The Wild Things Are. The movie was never made and Lassetter left to start Pixar, which redefined how animated movies were created. Curious to see the shorts that led to Toy Story and its followers? Pixar's put all their short films online.
posted by beaucoupkevin at 8:41 AM PST - 20 comments

Masada: The Musical

Masada: The Musical.
posted by tranquileye at 8:07 AM PST - 9 comments

Armageddon won't be long..

Nuckin' Futs - The JibJab Year in Review
posted by hypersloth at 12:21 AM PST - 55 comments

December 12


THE BEST USB DRIVE EVAR!! (flash video.) Via here and here.
posted by loquacious at 10:16 PM PST - 35 comments

The Tatooine Hotel

You may know that some of the Tatooine parts of Star Wars were filmed in Tunisia . But did you know you can spend the night in Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen's distinctive underground house? In the middle of the desert, local people have taken up residence in the 30-year-old set.
posted by gottabefunky at 9:31 PM PST - 20 comments

and we will make oyu long as you don't mind me grabbing your dick once in a while

Mark Foley's ... ewwwww Now that the House Ethics committee has finished its investigation of Mark Foley, we can look through the report itself, or at the Exhibit List and discover...Exhibit 13, 104 pages of Maf54's IM conversations (.pdf).

Reading the IMs and the emails is a bit like a train wreck, horrible to watch, but difficult to look away. It's just beyond pathetic to watch Foley attempt to "seduce" the pages while they're doing their best to keep thing at the "lol" level (see page 36 of the pdf for the title quote source). Does anyone know where the IM texts came from? Did Foley IM from his office in the House?
posted by jasper411 at 8:57 PM PST - 97 comments

ebuC s'kibuR

Michel Gondry solves a Rubik's Cube with his feet. Guess how he does it. (youtube)
posted by fungible at 7:15 PM PST - 40 comments

1850's graphic novel

The Comic History of Rome (1852), illustrated by John Leech (1817-64). Image index. The Victorian Web on John Leech. The John Leech sketch archive from Punch (over 600 images). A recent reprint. via the always great BiblioOdyssey.
posted by stbalbach at 6:59 PM PST - 7 comments


Search the complete works (including 8000 pages of critical commentary) of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, a gift by the Internationale Stiftung Mozarteum on the occasion of his 250th birthday. (German links are also available).
posted by ubiquity at 6:21 PM PST - 8 comments

Build Your Own Infrared Paint Remover

Removing layers upon layers of old paint? What a royal pain in the a$$. But now there's a relatively painless way! Silent Paint Remover. The bad news? $400-$500. Too rich for you, Bunkie? Well, God Bless The Internets.
posted by spock at 5:22 PM PST - 21 comments

Cockatoo love

A Tale of Two Cockies. A Story of Love, Compassion, Friendship & Loyalty. [Via MoFi.]
posted by homunculus at 5:02 PM PST - 15 comments

Rabbit Jones

Who is Rabbit Jones? Some text and images NSFW. A man steals a giant rabbit head. He meets another man who eats flies. He beats up a weirdo, then gets ugly drunk, and impersonates a refugee. Plus lots of other adventures & cool Rabbit Jones photos. But what is the connection to Jamaica? "The weirdness of Kingston is highly entertaining. Is Peter Dean Rickards "The Canadian born, chubby, self-appointed, self publicist, media terrorist of Kingston" or just a hater?
posted by Area Control at 4:40 PM PST - 5 comments

There's a killer on the loose...

There's a killer on the loose...and he's targetting working girls in your provincial English town. Some are in such dire straits that they go back out to work even after the first body was found. According to some, sex workers "are more terrified of starving than of murder." In the words of Carrie Mitchell, "It's no wonder when women are thrown off welfare...that they turn to prostitution to survive." "How do you ask the Police for help when you may have a warrant out for arrest and an ASBO?" Is it really unthinkable to consider the prostitutes claim: "Would decriminalisation really make women safer?"
posted by dash_slot- at 4:27 PM PST - 32 comments

End of the 109th session

I'm an amendment to be - Yes an amendment to be. And I'm hoping that they'll ratify me. With political pressure towards signing bills becoming more relevant in the Rovian era of politics (example), will we see a shift in Congressional jurisprudence on issues such as Social Security, The War in Iraq (nytimes op-ed reg req), Ethics in the 110th? Perhaps Public Perception has a lot to do with it. Of course, some loopholes couldn't hurt.
posted by stratastar at 4:11 PM PST - 15 comments

don't miss the Nancy Reagan one!

The 40 Best Celebrity Rumors Ever --from the editors at Nerve (and maybe nsfw, textwise). Sex, drugs, rock n roll, deaths, more sex, more drugs, etc. Dive in. But be careful. This stuff doesn't wash off.
posted by amberglow at 3:57 PM PST - 27 comments

Anti-depressants increase suicide risk in young adults, FDA warns

Anti-depressants increase suicide risk in young adults, FDA warns. "When results are analyzed by age, it becomes clear that there is an elevated risk for suicidality and suicidal behavior among adults younger than 25 years of age that approaches that seen in the pediatric population." More here and here. This follows the FDA finding that anti-depressants increased the risk of suicide in young children. The FDA now requires manufacturers of anti-depressants to include warnings, and plans to meet on Dec 13 to discuss the findings further.
posted by shivohum at 3:08 PM PST - 41 comments

Passes the Rorschach Test

The Daily Monster - Time-lapse videos of artist Stefan Bucher turning ink splotches into monsters. A new one every day. Also available on YouTube.
posted by Partial Law at 2:07 PM PST - 13 comments

Leslie Harpold Remembered

Leslie Harpold Remembered When her annual advent calendar was not updated after December 7th people all over the web started to express concern over Leslie Harpold's absence. Sadly it has been confirmed that she died sometime last week. I think Leslie would be touched to see the way friends and strangers have spontaneously posted remembrances of her via a medium she loved and help mold.
posted by amphigory at 1:07 PM PST - 66 comments

No Context

"A fedora hat worn by me without the necessary protective irony would eat through my head and kill me." Goodbye to George W.S. Trow, one of the strangest, wisest, disturbingest writer ever to gape at, marvel at, and love his fellow Americans. His 1980 essay "Within the Context of No Context" (which shared with J.D. Salinger's last published story the distinction of taking up an entire issue of the New Yorker) placed television, irony, and distance at the center of the new United States. He also wrote the less well-known (but equally beautiful) short story collection Bullies, along with a novel and several screenplays, helped found National Lampoon, and was a staff writer at the New Yorker from 1966 until 1994, when he quit in protest of Roseanne Barr's guest-editing stint. He died on November 24, in Naples, at the age of 63. Appreciations from the New York Observer, Slate, and Gawker.
posted by escabeche at 12:56 PM PST - 17 comments


In the wake of a school shooting in Germany, legislators want to lock up all who commit acts of violence . . . in video games.
posted by landis at 12:51 PM PST - 35 comments

Though ask yourself, was Dorothy Parker ever really funny?

Why are women, who have the whole male world at their mercy, not funny? Please do not pretend not to know what I am talking about.
posted by nuclear_soup at 10:51 AM PST - 205 comments

Tofu makes you gay

Tofu is to gays as fluoridated water is to Communists? No, but tofu is as protein-rich as this article by James Rutz, chairman of Megashift Ministries, is delightfully rich in crazy. (previously on MeFi: Is soy safe?, Tofu Eaters v. Hummers). The comments thread about this article on Pandagon is priceless.
posted by at 10:13 AM PST - 134 comments

Pencil Sketches of Palomar Observatory

Russell W. Porter was an amateur astronomer who helped design the 200 inch telescope for Mount Palomar observatory. His pencil sketches of the finished mechanism are remarkably beautiful.
posted by jonson at 9:46 AM PST - 15 comments

Goodbye 20th Centegenarians

The Young@ Heart Chorus, a group of mostly amateur entertainers (some who never stepped on stage before the age of 80), performs Sonic Youth's "Schizophrenia". As seen on a recent Channel 4 documentary about the group. [Via].
posted by pfafflin at 9:29 AM PST - 15 comments

Vivé Le Web?

Le Web 3 is not going well in the eyes of the attendees, and has turned into a platform for irrelevant politicians and product launches. Is this the biggest unconference yet? Tom Morris has a good summary.
posted by xvs22 at 9:04 AM PST - 4 comments

Saved the world with Used Books?

Save the world with used books? A bookstore I sometimes go to in Boston is doing a Used Book of the Month Club...and apparently trying to save the world. Has anyone else every sold anything used-of-the-month? I think this is new retail territory. I could save a few bucks with a Used-XBox-Game-Of-The-Month. Or does this mean the economy is getting worse, if people can't even buy new books?
posted by UMDirector at 9:00 AM PST - 33 comments

Crash in Gander

Twenty-one years ago today a plane crashed in Gander, Newfoundland. The flight carried American soldiers heading home for the holidays, returning from a mission in the Sinai. Called the worst aviation disaster on Canadian soil, the crash killed the 248 soldiers and 8 crew members aboard. On December 16th, mere days after the crash, President Ronald Reagan gave a speech at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, to comfort the victims' families. As time passed, however, some of the families demanded answers from the US Government regarding the circumstances of the crash. In 1989, Robin Tallon, member of congress from South Carolina, assisted the families' by bringing the matter before Congress - and also sending a letter to then-Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney (scroll down page). In 1992, a Time Magazine article addressed forensic evidence which supported the idea of an on-board explosion prior to impact, as well as the flight's connections to Iran Contra and the terrorist group Islamic Jihad. This article also discusses the book written on the crash by Les Filotas, a dissenting member of the air safety board. The question was brought forth again in 1993, with a bill introduced requesting that a commission be formed to further investigate the circumstances of the crash. As with any disaster with unanswered questions, conspiracy theories abound. To this day, many of the questions surrounding Flight 1285 remain unanswered. While the crash may never be fully explained, one certainty remains - for the families whose loved ones never came home for Christmas, the twelfth day of the twelfth month will never be forgotten.
posted by SassHat at 8:54 AM PST - 22 comments

Vintage Christmas 1945-70.

Vintage Christmas 1945-70 Nostalgic images.
posted by plep at 7:52 AM PST - 5 comments

Blow wheels, Jac, blow wheels!

Jac Mac and Rad Boy Go! Speaking, as we were, of the late great Night Flight, here's another classic of the era. Written, directed, and "starring" Wesley Archer, who later worked on The Simpsons and King of the Hill.
posted by schoolgirl report at 7:51 AM PST - 11 comments

Be A Rock God-Feel The Power-Enjoy The Power-Be The Very Best!

The Internet Band
I Say Yeah! Yeah Yeah Yeahh..........I Got Fame........Right Here............If You Want It. The Beatles Had 4 Singers, I Want 5. Are You Worthy?
The World's Next Great Rock Band Is Now Forming. You Will Absolutely Be The #1 Band After Your First Cd Release. I Guarantee It.
posted by rachelpapers at 7:35 AM PST - 31 comments

We are the 801, We are the central shaft

Taking Tiger Mountain (by Strategy), the cover version.
Two San Francisco musicians cover all of Brian Eno's pre-ambient album - the one loosely inspired by a Maoist opera. Eno likes it.
posted by thatwhichfalls at 5:15 AM PST - 20 comments

The Human Baton

Luke Vaughn has no car, but he wanted to travel from his home in Eugene, OR to the East Coast for the holidays. So he asked his fellow fans of the show with zefrank for a little help. He's becoming the Human Baton, and with the help of dozens of internet strangers, he's started his trip cross-country. They're each putting a pin on his jacket, posting photos, and blogging it. Oh, and they're planning meetups with him all through his route.
posted by Plutor at 5:09 AM PST - 10 comments

If Sylar were into bugs...

Insect Lab. Insects retrofitted with antique watch parts and electronic components.
posted by Lush at 1:00 AM PST - 29 comments

December 11


breveCreatures is a screensaver (created using the open source simulation environment breve) that simulates the evolution of locomotion.
posted by brundlefly at 9:19 PM PST - 26 comments


NerdCore for Life say what?
posted by delmoi at 7:21 PM PST - 61 comments

The wilder planet of Roland Topor

Topor et moi. Roland Topor was the graphic artist behind the beautiful Planète Sauvage (Cf. a few posts below) but his body of work also included founding the Panic Movement with fellow oddballs Jodorowsky and Arrabal, writing plays and novels (The Tenant, turned into a movie by another Paris-born celebrity of Polish extraction and amateur of bizarre, Roman Polanski), and making strange and popular TV shows for children (YouTube clips from the 80s). Except for the kids shows, most of the links are quite NSFW with abundant sex and/or violence, though in a cartoonish, disturbing, surreal, or even political way: Topor once said (YouTube documentary in French starting with his Phallunculi series) that to renounce sex was to banish oneself from mankind. Topor himself was also a familiar figure of the French cultural landscape, instantly recognisable thanks to his manic cackle (heard at the beginning of this video where he explains how to make art from random pornographic images), that he (over)used to play the madman Renfield in Herzog's Nosferatu.
posted by elgilito at 6:05 PM PST - 10 comments

The Prix Jack Trevor Story

The Jack Trevor Story Memorial Prize "is generally awarded for a work of fiction or body of work which, in the opinion of the committee, best celebrates the spirit of Jack Trevor Story. The conditions of the prize are that the money shall be spent in a week to a fortnight and the author have nothing to show for it at the end of that time." The 2006 winner of the prize is Steve Aylett.
posted by Iridic at 5:33 PM PST - 6 comments

The first knowledge village of India

Hansdehar - rural life in India.
posted by tellurian at 5:21 PM PST - 10 comments

Heckleva job, Rummy

Handling Hecklers (youtube filter - NSFW language) In the wake of the Michael Richards fiasco, many lessons have been learned. Is there a better way to handle the onslaught of loudmouths? Some do it with finesse. Others struggle. What if they actually get up on stage and try to fight you? Can they be overpowered simply by being louder and obnoxious? Sometimes they set themselves up too easily. Comedy legends sure can have their own distinctive approach. Even Clinton knew how to handle the pressure. Musicians themselves are no strangers to poor decisons. What's to say about comics who go after their own? There's also the benevolent way. Can you even blame this guy? You can always try to stay classy, but that just seems to exacerbate things. It's definitely topical enough to make skits out of. Here are a few more thrown in for good measure.
posted by Mach3avelli at 3:36 PM PST - 89 comments

What good were eyes to me? Nothing I could see could bring me joy.

Fooled By Cybermum “Like millions of teenagers, Ben Atkins spends hours on social networking websites. So he was delighted when he met his perfect girl online, she shared his love of philosophy and bass guitars, and thought he was wonderful … But the lovely Cheshakitten was actually Ben’s mother, Anne, posing as a teenager to find out more about this internet phenomenon.”
posted by Tenuki at 3:07 PM PST - 95 comments

Oy, vey iz mir gewalt!

To life. To life! L'canine. For Jewish dogs. Um, yeah. Okay.
posted by John of Michigan at 3:06 PM PST - 12 comments

Older than...

Elizabeth "Lizzie" Bolden has died at the age of 116. I can only imagine the things that she must have lived & experienced first hand.
posted by drstein at 3:02 PM PST - 28 comments

?Backwards Day!

?Let today - the eleventh day of the twelfth month - henceforth and forever be Backwards Day! ?Fun with Unicode
Via the wonderfully nerdy 74 68 65 20 64 69 67 69 74 61 6C 20 6D 65.??‭
posted by loquacious at 2:56 PM PST - 114 comments

A London Provisioner's Chronicle, 1550-1563

Henry's Machyn's sixteenth-century Chronicle was nearly destroyed in an eighteenth-century fire, but editors Richard W. Bailey, Marilyn Miller, and Colette Moore have just published a new online scholarly edition, comprising both a reconstructed text (thanks to the very posthumous assistance of John Strype) and images of all the pages. There are several other sixteenth- and seventeenth-century diaries and chronicles online, including Dana F. Sutton's edition of William Camden's Diary (in both Latin and English), J. G. Nichols' Victorian edition of the Chronicle of the Grey Friars of London, and the Earls Colne project's transcription of the diary of clergyman Ralph Josselin. (Machyn link via the very handy Textual Studies, 1500-1800.)
posted by thomas j wise at 2:32 PM PST - 4 comments

Why don't you come to your senses?

Never mind that Shatner thing, YouTube is proving that Esperanto is much hipper now. (previously)
posted by hovercraft at 2:20 PM PST - 6 comments

La Planète sauvage

La Planète sauvage - based on the novel Oms en Série by Stefan Wul, and known to the English speaking world as Fantastic Planet, is a wonderfully psychadelic animated Sci-Fi film from 1973. An international production between France and Czechoslovakia, the movie has a cult following, mostly from viewers who saw it on USA's Night Flight in the 1980's. Although it has languished in obscurity for some time, Hollywood has decided it's time for a live action remake. For those who haven't seen it, or for people who haven't seen it in twenty years, some kind soul has uploaded the entire film to Youtube. You'll never look at your pets the same way again.
posted by smoothvirus at 11:31 AM PST - 36 comments

It Was All Just a Bad Dream

Today we learn that Enron's outside law firm, Vinson & Elkins, has escaped unscathed. The Enron debacle sucked in many people, but the lawyers have so far not been held liable. But many have asked: what about the lawyers [pdf]?
posted by Falconetti at 10:54 AM PST - 23 comments

No DeLay in Response

A tribute to the 75-minute period where Tom DeLay actually received feedback from America. Tom DeLay drops unrestricted comments almost immediately on his first disastrous day as a blogger.
posted by jonp72 at 10:41 AM PST - 58 comments

Her Secret Past

Her Secret Past is a Flickr group of retro (1950's - give or take a decade) advertisements targeted at women's fears, both the common ones (hairiness/lack of tiny monkey, wrinkles) and the lesser known ones (vagina so dirty it causes you to repeatedly leave parties early). Along the same lines, but for men is His Secret Past - although if you really want to see retro advertisements targeted at men, this set of ads from May 1963's Playboy would be the perfect source.
posted by jonson at 9:33 AM PST - 47 comments


A clip from "Grey Gardens" on Broadway! (YouTube). The critics have been won over. Albert Maysle has commented on how the Beales might react to their portrayals. Meanwhile, a new doc, "The Beales of Grey Gardens", made from Al's previously unused footage, comes with the Criterion Collection DVD of the original. Also, previously.
posted by hermitosis at 9:33 AM PST - 19 comments

A title's pointless. Who wouldn't click on a link called that?

Architecture and the Velvet Fist of Happiness - click 'view the book" in the top left. {Flash, slight sound, NSFW}
posted by dobbs at 8:47 AM PST - 9 comments

Female Mask Site Galleries

Female Mask Site Galleries. Here you will find all the galleries that have been updated in 2005-2006. (via this thread; some images nsfw)
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 8:00 AM PST - 17 comments

A futuristic instrumental classic rock fusion look at life.

Mr. Frank J. Stola (flash): a self-described professional musician who mangles any and all genres he attempts. Don't miss his take on instrumental fusion rock classical jazz, revolutionary country n western traditional, or heavy metal instrumental on CD Baby. Equally marvelous are his strange, minimal videos. And don't forget to pick up Mr. Stola's myriad products at his Cafepress store. Is he serious?
posted by zonkout at 7:42 AM PST - 10 comments

Cow 'emissions' more damaging to planet than CO2 from cars

Livestock's Long Shadow, a new UN FAO report (full report) says livestock (cows, pig, sheep, etc.) generate more CO2 than all forms of transportation (cars, planes, etc) combined, with the worlds live stock expected to double by 2050.
posted by stbalbach at 6:57 AM PST - 32 comments

It contains DHA of high-nutrition !!

Take a cyber tour of the Nong Shim factory! Yay! Warning: Portions may require ActiveX control. Includes sound, especially music, voice, and a chime every few seconds. Discontinue use if you experience any of the following: overstimulation, understimulation, rage, anguish, nausea, seizure, uncontrollable craving for shrimp crackers, or an erection lasting more than four hours.
posted by thirteenkiller at 5:52 AM PST - 11 comments

India's Outsourcing Problems

India's Outsourcing Problems One of the most controversial aspects of the global economy has been the newfound freedom of companies from physical location and the subsequent spread of outsourcing jobs. No country had embraced tech outsourcing with the passion of India. Of late, problems there are beginning to rise: engineers start a project, get a few months' experience, and then bolt for greener pastures, bringing a level of attrition that replaces entire staffs within the course of a year. Combine that with salaries in Bangalore that are rising at 12% to 14% per year and it is no surprise that companies are leaving India for a slew of emerging hot spots for IT outsourcing such as the old Soviet Bloc, China, and Vietnam. This comes as companies such as Microsoft continue to laud outsourcing and proudly proclaim that it is here to stay, and it looks as if Ho Chi Minh City will be the next Bangalore.
posted by PreacherTom at 4:31 AM PST - 19 comments

Wii + Flickr = Life 2.0

Forget the fact that the Wii may break your fancy new plasma screen TV or give you 'Wii elbow' - it just looks like bloody good fun to play.
posted by muthecow at 3:49 AM PST - 57 comments

"I'm #1 at the box-office, Sugar Tits!"

"I'm #1 at the box-office, Sugar Tits!" The mystery continues: what or who is Sugar Tits? Is it a baby pacificer? Is it a breakfast cereal? Is she an "attractive female law officer dispatched to oppress good Christian men by her masters within the international conspiracy of invisible Zionist superjews"? Maybe it's Mel's next movie?
posted by Strawman at 2:26 AM PST - 43 comments

December 10

Does my nose amuse you?

Raging Rudolph, a Martin Scorsese, Bankin/Rass Production.
Does my nose amuse you, is it funny like a clown, does it make you laugh?
No, no, no, great nose.
OK, I'm the Capo now.
posted by caddis at 10:04 PM PST - 7 comments

This man...this blockhead!

Peanuts Meets Marvel. Peanuts characters as Marvel Comics superheroes.
posted by Gamblor at 8:29 PM PST - 26 comments

New Twist on the Credit Card Game

How can a credit card company fool you? Let me count the ways. When Brad Kehn received his first credit card from Capital One Financial in 2004, it took him only three months to exceed its $300 credit limit and get socked with a $35 over-limit fee. But what surprised the Plankinton, S.D., resident more was that Cap One then offered him another card, even though he was over the limit -- and then another and another.
posted by storybored at 7:20 PM PST - 103 comments

It's beginning to poop a lot like Christmas

So this is Christmas and what have you done? Well, if you've been to Jesus's manger, you're made of clay, and you're from Spain, you probably pooped. (Previously.)(Via.)
posted by Astro Zombie at 6:31 PM PST - 17 comments

A Scrubbie Brown Christmas

A Charlie Brown Christmas as performed by the cast of Scrubs.
posted by gottabefunky at 6:15 PM PST - 43 comments

Three trees, one stool.

Grow your own. Furniture that is. Christopher Cattle has pictures and basic instructions on growing a three legged stool. Similiar previously here, here, and here.
posted by Mitheral at 6:01 PM PST - 12 comments

Build Your First Surfboard

Build Your First Surfboard.
posted by hama7 at 5:45 PM PST - 10 comments

Kick it over the net!

The Thai sport of Sepak Takraw is similar to volleyball but players may not use their hands. It's like the best parts of volleyball, soccer, hacky sack, gymnastics and Tae Kwon Do rolled into one sport. Each team may use a combination of feet, knees, head or shoulders to pass the ball three times before spiking it back over the net.
posted by freshwater_pr0n at 5:43 PM PST - 14 comments


The English may be obsessed with sport - but for half of the population that does not go beyond picking up the remote control. A study of nearly 364,000 people in every corner of the country, commissioned by Sport England, reveals half of the population are doing no exercise at all. If things don’t change, England will be as fat as America by 2010.
posted by four panels at 2:51 PM PST - 128 comments

What does Firefox have to do with social justice?

Watch Even Moglen's 2006 Keynote at the International Plone Conference Eben delivered an inspiring and wide-ranging talk that traced the connections between the free software movement, the One Laptop Per Child project, and the past three hundred years of modern industrial economic development, and placed our work into the larger context of the ongoing journey towards freedom and equality for all people.
Links: QuickTime | MP3 | YouTube | Transcript
posted by commonmedia at 2:14 PM PST - 25 comments

Get The Lead Out

Pencil art isn't always about drawing. The first artist also uses nails. [previously]
posted by Partial Law at 1:19 PM PST - 15 comments

Go west, young man

Where did your ancestors live in 1840? 1880? 1920? A nifty little map showing how names traveled across the US.
posted by The corpse in the library at 12:17 PM PST - 22 comments

I would like to take this opportunity to endorse the candidacy of Mr. Peanut for mayor of Vancouver.

We need more artists in politics! In 1969, Canadian performance artist Vincent Trasov constructed a human-sized peanut costume and took on the familiar identity of Planters mascot Mr. Peanut. Five years later, Trasov took his performance art persona to the next level as he entered Mr. Peanut into the 1974 Vancouver mayoral election, running on a platform of "Performance, Elegance, Art, Nonsense, Uniqueness, and Talent." Trasov posed a "visual question" to his opponents at the debates via tap dance, received at least one celebrity endorsement during his campaign, and in the end, garnered 3.4% of the vote. Recently, Trasov (and fellow artist Michael Morris) launched the Morris/Trasov Archive, where you can find a nice collection of photos from the campaign trail online (Performance -> My Five Years in a Nutshell).

Mr. Peanut remains a central part of Trasov's art; his "Histories" place Mr. Peanut in the Bamyian Valley of Afghanistan, the Marx-Engels monument at Berlin, and at the entrance to Thebes, playing the role of Oedipus opposite the Sphinx.
posted by duffell at 11:35 AM PST - 11 comments

Punkin' Chunkin'

Here’s the scenario. Halloween’s over. The kids have their loot. But you, the grownups, are stuck with pumpkin upon pumpkin upon pumpkin . . . what are you to do? You could just leave them out for the garbage collection but that’s not very inspired. A more creative option would be to head out to a field in rural Delaware, build a big-ass catapult or a big air cannon and let the fun begin. (A longer video can be found here.) The World Championship Punkin Chunkin contest has been hurling ripe holiday vegetables through the autumn air for two decades now and attracts a crowd in the tens of thousands. (Previously on MetaFilter).
posted by jason's_planet at 10:10 AM PST - 13 comments

Adios Viejo

Adios Viejo! Pinochet dies!
posted by DieHipsterDie at 10:04 AM PST - 110 comments

Hitchhikers Guide to the Web

Prescient documentary about the web on the web (Google Vid) (synopsis here). Douglas Adams (of Hitchhiker fame) anticipates t’ internet. He was a funny writer in love with deadlines; he loved the whooshing noise they make when they go past. He was a farsighted chap and creator of the word and concept of babelfish amongst many other adopted cultural references.
posted by Gratishades at 9:58 AM PST - 14 comments

get paid to solve this problem! is a place where a bounty is placed upon biology and chemistry problems, and any roving freelance scientist can get paid to offer a solution.
posted by localhuman at 9:57 AM PST - 6 comments

Torture Inc.

Abu Ghraib revisited? Savaged by dogs, Electrocuted With Cattle Prods, Burned By Toxic Chemicals, Does such barbaric abuse inside U.S. jails explain the horrors that were committed in Iraq? [...] It’s terrible to watch some of the videos and realise that you’re not only seeing torture in action but, in the most extreme cases, you are witnessing young men dying. Channel 4-documentary on US prisons. (google video. Disclaimer: nasty stuff)
posted by Bravocharlie at 9:06 AM PST - 104 comments

House trembles as McKinney happyslaps Pelosi

Ladies and gentlemen, your bill to impeach President Bush is ready. Introduced by Cynthia McKinney.
posted by jfuller at 7:11 AM PST - 79 comments

The living is easy

The Central City by Steve Tanza
posted by klangklangston at 6:48 AM PST - 4 comments

A House, a Mouse, and a Louse

Tom Hignite wasn't content owning one of Wisconsin's most successful companies, Miracle Homes. The evangelical contracting magnate had a dream. He would be the Walt Disney(sound) of the 21st century. So he turned a portion of his 7,000 square foot house into a studio, hired a crew of veteran Disney and Warner Bros. animators, and proceeded to make a feature film QT starring his own creation, Miracle Mouse. This is the story of how it all went wrong.
posted by maryh at 4:05 AM PST - 53 comments

A Love Story on the Streets

On December 5th, a Croatian man named Nico awoke to find a map his girlfriend had left him featuring a specific path she wanted him to take to work; along the way he saw stencils, paint, aerosol, collage wheat pastes & other art she had laid out in the pre-dawn hours letting him know how much she loved him. The sights Nico saw, in order, are collected here.
posted by jonson at 1:03 AM PST - 78 comments

December 9

It's Cheaper to Throw Them Out

Are reusable spacecraft history? Tonight's space shuttle launch was spectacular. Watch them while you can; there are only fifteen launches left before NASA retires the shuttle, and with it the concept of reusable spacecraft. Turns out that, despite previous efforts, governments just can't make the original, common-sense idea of reusable spacecraft economically feasible. Leave it to private industry to figure out how.
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 10:02 PM PST - 34 comments

State of Denial

The Denial Machine. A 40-min Canadian (CBC) documentary about the "denial industry" - think tanks, scientists, PR firms, focus groups, lawyers, etc.. the issue? Tobacco. Global Warming. It doesn't matter - different issues but the same people. How to be a professional denier and profit.
posted by stbalbach at 7:46 PM PST - 45 comments

"The future, for which I have really worked, is mine."

How did we miss the 150th anniversary of Nikola Tesla's birth?
posted by unknowncommand at 7:43 PM PST - 41 comments

Please allow me to introduce myself, I'm a man of wealth and taste

37 years and 3 days ago, the World's Greatest Rock & Roll Band played a free concert at Altamont Speedway. A second Woodstock was probably the intent, but it was not to be, and the security was provided by the Hell's Angels. During the Jefferson Airplane's set Marty Balin was punched out(youtube). As the Stones played "Under My Thumb" a fan, Meredith Hunter, 19 was killed(youtube). Widely seen as the end of the Utopian ideals of th 1960's this event has been memorialized in song and print (most memorably by Stanley Booth who witnessed the event from behind Keith Richards' amp.
posted by jonmc at 6:36 PM PST - 94 comments

What's the hardest part about being you?

"It's hard being me." Other Dudes it's been hard to be. previously
posted by piratebowling at 5:34 PM PST - 25 comments

the year of the truthiness

Merriam-Webster's 2006 Word of the Year is NOT in their online dictionary. Officially coined on October 17, 2005, it had already won the American Dialect Society's 2005 Award (pdf) where they claim that "other meanings of the word date as far back as 1824", and is probably a shoe-in for for the Banished Words of 2007 list.

A distant number 2 is our friend "the goog", and after that, it's all NewsFilter/PoliticsFilter/IraqFilter (with that all-time classic "war" at #4).
(From the MeFite who posted the Favorite Words of 2004 and the Banished Words List in 2003 and 2004)
posted by wendell at 3:40 PM PST - 48 comments

Illegal Eagles

It's war, and young American illegally men head to Canada. From Canada they are off to join the RAF and fight the Nazis in the Battle of Britain. The U.S. had passed a series of laws during the 1930’s to keep the country from getting embroiled in the growing turmoil in Europe and Asia.... The Neutrality Acts were structured to keep the U.S. out of a possible European war. This, in effect, made it illegal for recruiters to hire Americans to go to Canada or England for enlistment purposes, or for U.S. citizens to volunteer for military service in England.... Violators of the U. S. Neutrality Acts could face stiff penalties of up to $20,000 in fines, ten years in prison, and loss of citizenship. Some F.B.I. agents were assigned to track down these evildoers, but it doesn’t appear they had much success. They became the Eagle Squadrons. A similar group, the Flying Tigers, headed to China to fight the Japanese, this one apparently with some clandestine US government sponsorship, despite the neutrality laws. Brave, effective and colorful as described in this interview.
posted by caddis at 2:57 PM PST - 16 comments


Final Fantasy Summon Magic! Final Fantasy 7 Summons (Part One). Final Fantasy 7 Summons (Part Two). Final Fantasy 8 Summons and limit breaks. Final Fantasy 9 Summons and trances. Final Fantasy 10 Summons and limit breaks. And lastly, the DVD retrospective of Final Fantasy that shipped with the collector's edition of 12.
posted by BlackLeotardFront at 2:41 PM PST - 34 comments

Homeless Prophet

Vivek Speaks - 38 minutes of a ongoing, heartfelt lecture about God, Personal power & the Truth by Vivek, a homeless guy. (YouTube)
posted by growabrain at 2:02 PM PST - 12 comments

A colourful entrance is half the work.

Fancy high-tech crowd control beams? Nah. Silly String is what our troops really need.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:56 AM PST - 19 comments

$0.002 != $0.00002

Math skills are not Verizon's strong point. A man tries to resolve a simple problem with Verizon for 22 minutes. Listen, and despair.
posted by Drunken_munky at 10:44 AM PST - 170 comments

Tell us: why did you rape yourself?

Young couple arrested for having sex. In absence of "Romeo and Juliet" laws which protect young people's sexual congress depending on their age difference, children can be both charged as the perpetrator of a sex crime and protected as the victim of one.
posted by tehloki at 10:05 AM PST - 112 comments

Big riches

"There are several factors which determine the value of stone money. The first is the number of human lives that were lost on the journey to bring the stone home..." The giant stone coins of Yap were used for hundreds of years before the island experienced inflation of the most literal kind due to the entrepreneurship of a shipwrecked American fugitive. Today, the Yap islanders are trying to save their currency, as well as their caste system; while an economist at the Federal Reserve considers what Yap says about our money. [last link pdf, some html excerpts here]
posted by blahblahblah at 8:41 AM PST - 22 comments

My Humps, My Humps, My Feral Population Jumps

From far away they came to toil under the scorching Outback sun, and their hardy dispositions and tireless labor helped to create the central Australian railway and telegraph systems. They are the Camels [NPR story w/ audio], and today they are free (well, okay, feral), and they are many (700,000 strong, at least.) While they're no cane toads, they're becoming a bit of a pest. What to do with all those dromedaries? Well, you can race 'em, or you can eat 'em, or maybe you can even try milking 'em. Just get 'em before they get you, mate.
posted by maryh at 3:51 AM PST - 18 comments

December 8

Online Personal Black Book

Not being blackmailed enough? Fucking so many people you can't keep track? Need worldwide access to your list of conquests? The solution you've been waiting for is at hand! My Black Book is a "secure" online service that allows you to post as many entries ("people you banged") and sessions ("ways in which you did it") as you need, and best of all, it's 100% free. unless you count the money you'll spend in blackmail fees.
posted by jonson at 11:50 PM PST - 61 comments

Ozzy, drag queens, and leathermen, together at last.

Sabbath plays the Folsom Street Parade along with members of San Francisco's Gay Imperial Court. I'm confused though – what was the the Folsom Street Parade? Folsom Street Fairs didn't start until the 80's and the city's first large Gay Pride march wasn't until '72. (homophobes, leatherophobes, wikipediaphobes, and youtubeophobes probably shouldn't click the links. And ya, Folsom Street is not super work safe. Unless you work in a dungeon.)
posted by serazin at 11:38 PM PST - 3 comments

Vertical architectural gardening.

Vertical gardening in architecture. Gorgeous walls and other vertical architectural features covered in lush, growing greenery.
posted by loquacious at 10:44 PM PST - 12 comments

There are those who in soft eunuchs place their bliss / And shun the scrubbing of a bearded kiss

Castrati were the superstars of centuries gone by! (bonus link: Countertenor jokes)
posted by furtive at 9:21 PM PST - 13 comments

Rudolph Restored

If you've grown up in the states, odds are you've seen/watched the highly rated Christmas special, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. Trailer here

When the production was over, the animation company put the puppets in a closet. When they were due to be thrown away, a secretary got permission and took them home. Her children played with the puppets for years...nobody thought they'd be of value. Some of them broke, and last year they were found. (not all were intact.)

Photos of the Restoration. Close up of the restored Rudolph. There were a number of films after (over 10+ years after the first,) Rudolph's Shiny New Year, Frosty Christmas in July and Island of Misfit Toys. These (and many other films) are Rankin/Bass productions. Some people also know Rankin Bass for their animated version of the Hobbit and the Last Unicorn. Rankin/Bass previously mentioned on Mefi
posted by filmgeek at 9:05 PM PST - 40 comments

Hyper-Achiever with No Direction and Tendency to Overcomplicate Situations Syndrome? ?

Clearification Microsoft is launching a viral marketing campaign for Vista. It's only half done - it wraps up in January. Demetri Martin stars in a series of webisodes about his "rare condition". The best part of the campaign are the idle ramblings of Demetri on the main page. The campaign consists of an rss feed, a podcast, and the webisodes.
posted by disclaimer at 8:48 PM PST - 41 comments

Harry Everett Smith

Harry Everett Smith was a, "20th-century Renaissance man, working as an abstract film-maker, painter, musicologist, anthropologist, theoretician, self-mythologizer and connoisseur of arcana". His Anthology of American Folk Music was hugely influential on American music, while his alchemical, synæsthetic films were to have a similar impact on experimental film and animation. Enjoy his mesmerising and astonishing "Early Abstractions" on Youtube [part 1 or 4], hear Harry lecture, or listen to some tracks from The Anthology.
posted by MetaMonkey at 8:42 PM PST - 9 comments

Fans are slans

"Claude Degler attended the Chicon in 1940, and at Denver in 1941 delivered a speech purporting to have been written by Martians." So begins the Fancyclopedia I entry on Degler's Cosmic Circle. Claude Degler believed that science fiction fans were destined to evolve into a new species superior to homo sapiens, "cosmen." In 2001 (the year) David B. Williams went in search of Degler, who had disappeard from fandom in 1951. Teresa Nielsen Hayden wrote in 1986 a story/essay about the inner Degler called Hell, 12 Feet. He was as infamous as fans got, though some remember him sort of fondly. Degler crops up regularly in the "All Our Yesterdays" columns written by fandom historian, Harry Warner Jr. The ones with most information are the columns H.C. Koenig. Claude Degler, O Pioneers and The Cosmic Circle. Here's a Degler quote from the last link: We have created a fannationalism, a United World Fandom. Someday soon we will have our own apartment building, then our own land, our own city of Cosmen, schools, teachers, radio programme — later; our own laws, country perhaps! Our children shall inherit not only this earth — but this universe! Today we carry 22 states, tomorrow, nine planets!
posted by Kattullus at 8:22 PM PST - 3 comments

I am become Freeman Dyson, the destroyer of worlds

...For a week after I arrived at the ORS, the attacks on Hamburg continued. The second, on July 27, raised a firestorm that devastated the central part of the city and killed about 40,000 people. We succeeded in raising firestorms only twice, once in Hamburg and once more in Dresden in 1945, where between 25,000 and 60,000 people perished (the numbers are still debated)... Every time Bomber Command attacked a city, we were trying to raise a firestorm, but we never learnt why we so seldom succeeded.
Part I: A Failure of Intelligence  &  Part II: A Failure of Intelligence
Prominent physicist Freeman Dyson recalls the time he spent developing analytical methods to help the British Royal Air Force bomb German targets during World War II.    FYI: It's about more than just the firestorms...
posted by y2karl at 8:21 PM PST - 24 comments

Does your band suck?

Rules for Musicians. Posted on the wall of the always glorious Elbow Room in the equally glorious downtown of Ypsilanti, Michigan, here are some rules to follow should you wish to avoid the enmity of the sound guy and patrons.
posted by John of Michigan at 6:01 PM PST - 48 comments

New on the Web: Politics As Usual ?

Remember when folks were "up-in-arms" after learning that the Bush administration paid prominent political commentator Armstrong Williams $240,000 to promote 'No Child Left Behind' legislation? It turns out that a handful of liberal bloggers pulled in some decent cash this past year from various political campaigns as consultants, while maintaining their "independent" blogs. Case in point: Jerome Armstrong (MyDD) made $115,000+ from Sherrod Brown (over 15 months) and $65,000 from Mark Warner (over 12 months). Turns out Armstrong admitted this week that he has been writing on his blog under various aliases -- including 'Scott Shields.' 'Shields' received payments from the Robert Menendez campaign.
posted by ericb at 5:39 PM PST - 57 comments

Say Hello to the Goodbye Effect

Suddenly, you feel like you've been dipped in molten lava. According to Wired, the Active Denial System has been certified for use in Iraq.
posted by alms at 5:20 PM PST - 95 comments

Life could be could be a Judas goat

It’s not the big fat radio collar around your neck that’s so bad. It’s not even being painted bright colors. It’s that every time you make a new bunch of friends, they all tend to die (146k PDF). Welcome to the life of a Judas goat (89k PDF), one of the worst jobs in the animal kingdom. Your naturally sociable nature make you ideal for leading sheep to slaughter or helping animal-control specialists find groups of your compatriots in rugged environments, where they proceed to shoot them—everyone but you—from helicopters. Of course, you then get lonely, so you go off and find another bunch and the process begins again.
posted by gottabefunky at 3:30 PM PST - 16 comments


It's Flash Friday, but surprisingly no one's mentioned this yet. Since you seem to be fans of Orisinal's work, I thought it prudent to point out that he's put up a new game just in time for the holidays. So, let's go play some Winterbells, shall we?
posted by revmitcz at 2:44 PM PST - 21 comments


BarneyCam! A holiday video about the nation's First Dog, hosted on the official White House web site!
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 2:19 PM PST - 29 comments

Orphaned technology or technology orphans?

Where once geeks' biggest worry was orphaned technology, now it's technology orphans.
posted by GuyZero at 1:59 PM PST - 10 comments

personal book publishing

Kevin Kelly on the latest in personal book publishing advice.
posted by stbalbach at 7:06 AM PST - 63 comments

Ready. Set. Collapse.

This handy comparison guide can help you prepare for our turbulent future with lessons from other people's turbulent recent past.
posted by hexatron at 6:23 AM PST - 48 comments

And While London Burns - an operatic guided tour of London

"Bathed in fire, flood, love and turmoil And While London Burns is a compelling collision of thriller, opera and guided walk."
posted by headlessness at 5:38 AM PST - 9 comments

Taking Open Source to the Next Level

Taking Open Source to the Next Level Linux? Firefox? Bah! German Markus Merz scoffs at these posers. Instead, he steps up to offer the OScar project, whose goal is to develop and build an open source *car*. While not in the same class as a Range Rover or Hummer, they hope to make something more simple and functional. This isn't the only example of hardware-based open source projects. Others include Zero Prestige, which designs kites and kite-powered vehicles, and Open Prosthetics, which offers free exchange of designs for prosthetic devices.
posted by PreacherTom at 5:26 AM PST - 20 comments

What's sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander, eh, Jerry?

Albemarle County, Virginia: Pagans have been granted permission to advertise religious events in public schools... thanks to Jerry Falwell!
posted by Faint of Butt at 4:50 AM PST - 51 comments

Weird Al Animated: Season 2.0

Lost Rhapsody 2, Electric Boogaloo The unavoidable sequel to this, previously on MeFi with rotoscope effects and 90s Alt Rock Polka. Mashed up by this guy.
Joining the ranks of Weird Al toonage from Bill Plympton previously on MeFi, John Kricfalusi, Jim Blashfield, David Lovelace, Thomas Lee, JibJab, Robot Chicken, Will Vinton's Claymation, Albino Blacksheep and some WoW troll. Plus: Weird Anime and a cartoon interview.
posted by wendell at 4:49 AM PST - 17 comments

From Mainframe to WoW

Play history: Noughts and Crosses (EDSAC, 1952) begat Tennis for Two (Donner & oscilliscope, 1958) begat Spacewars (PDP, 1962) begat Star Trek (SDS Sigma, 1971) begat Hunt the Wumpus (Mainframe, 1972) begat Maze War (Xerox Atlos, 1974) begat DECWAR [warning:telnet(!)] (DEC-10, 1978) begat Zork (PDP-10, 1979) begat World of Warcraft... with a few steps in between. All names (but Maze Wars) go to playable versions. Dates have information on the game itself
posted by blahblahblah at 12:22 AM PST - 13 comments

December 7

50 Best Music Videos of 2006

Long before 2006 you could probably make a convincing argument that the music video has outlived its purpose; however, musicblogger docopenhagen's list of the top 50 music videos of 2006 has some excellent inclusions, and hopefully something for even the most jaded viewer. My threefavorites.
posted by jonson at 11:33 PM PST - 19 comments

Power, it starts with P like...

If you don't watch My Puss then You Suck. But what I want to know is, if you're gonna Eat to the Beat, How Many Licks until you go blind? Maybe we can find out Downtown. Sure, this post is full of video, audio, pop-ups, and is probably NSFW, but you know you want to join in with your favorite songs in praise of the empowered punani! Come on and Put a Little Sugar in My Bowl!
posted by serazin at 9:48 PM PST - 50 comments

Hisakyu's Railway Guide

Hisakyu's Railway Guide
posted by hama7 at 7:02 PM PST - 21 comments

Natural Contraception in the Ancient World?

Silphium was the wonder plant of the ancient world. Originally identified by Greek colonists in North Africa, the plant - a species of Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare) - grew only in a dimunitive area near the coast and could not be cultivated. Silphium was popular as a spice for cooking, but its notoriety stems from its alleged medicinal qualities, particularly its use as an herbal contraceptive (the "I love you" heart symbol may have originated from the shape of silphium's seed pods and its use in sex). So valuable was Silphium that it became an important component of the ancient world's economy and appears on coins. It's also among the first species recorded (by Pliny the Elder) as going extinct, probably by grazing sheep or uncontrolled harvesting. Or is it?
posted by Chinese Jet Pilot at 5:09 PM PST - 21 comments


GODMEN. "It's the wuss-ification of America that's getting us!" screeches Stine, 46. A moment later he adds a fervent: "Thank you, Lord, for our testosterone!"
posted by Sticherbeast at 4:17 PM PST - 134 comments

Flags of the world

Flags of the world... with client comments. Oh, Canada :( flash video
posted by boo_radley at 4:07 PM PST - 32 comments

Trapped in the Clauset

Trapped in the Clauset - part one, part two, and part three. [youtube]
posted by atom128 at 3:57 PM PST - 14 comments

O'Reilly pwned by a little girl?

Bill O'Reilly respondsYouTube to a 8 year oldYouTube (though he leaves out her saying "that idiot O'Reilly"). Bill and his "expert" Wendy Murphy (who claims that the ACLU supports child sex abuse) agree that the girl's performance is child abuse - "the ultimate inhumane treatment of a child". Murphy goes on to highlight the danger possibility of "some [religious] nut [who] wants to hunt this family down." The many comments at YouTube illustrate this point – while some are supportive, others call her a slut, and Tanzman6 (who has belonged to Right to Life and Peer Ministry clubs) says
"This little chink should shut the fuck up. We should have killed her parents in Viet Nam when we had the fucking chance. Burn the bitch."
While the child obviously had help with her material, is O'Reilly right that statements like "religion has caused the genocide of nations" is propaganda about which she understands nothing? Even after considering that she is Lakota (Sioux) and probably related to Greg Zephier, an American Indian Movement Leader? [most material taken from Jesus's General]
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 2:30 PM PST - 98 comments

Mantis Head

Insect views from If You Could See How Praying Mantises Hear.
The first picture is of a Phyllocrania paradoxa.
There's more about mantid ears at Yager Labs.
See also Picture Perfect Insects for the how to of it.
posted by y2karl at 2:05 PM PST - 9 comments

Can anyone still hide?

We previously discussed your cell phone as a roving bug, but what about your ipod?
posted by bmpetow at 12:54 PM PST - 26 comments

tone & texture

The Art of the Photogravure celebrates the process and the history of the all-but-forgotten art of the hand-pulled photogravure. In addition to the extensive collection of works from early masters to contemporary practitioners, check out the site's affiliated blog and some rich ambrotypes by site founder Mark Katzman. (via Gordon Coale)
posted by madamjujujive at 12:10 PM PST - 5 comments

Nullity and Perspex Machines

Dr James Anderson, from the University of Reading's computer science department, claims to have defined what it means to divide by zero. It's so simple, he claims, that he's even taught it to high school students [via Digg]. You just have to work with a new number he calls Nullity (RealPlayer video). According to Anderson's site The Book of Paragon, the creation, innovation, or discovery of nullity is a step toward describing a "perspective simplex, or perspex [ . . . ] a simple physical thing that is both a mind and a body." Anderson claims that Nullity permits the definition of transreal arithmetic (pdf), a "total arithmetic . . . with no arithmetical exceptions," thus removing what the fictional dialogue No Zombies, Only Feelies? identifies as the "homunculus problem" in mathematics: the need for human intervention to sort out "corner cases" which are not defined.
posted by treepour at 12:07 PM PST - 60 comments

50 works of art you should see before you die

50 works of art you should see before you die, according to Guardian art critic Jonathan Jones and his readers--"probably the most learned cyber-community on the web." (Jones' personal top 20) [via; more inside]
posted by kirkaracha at 11:40 AM PST - 67 comments

Pre-WWII America in Color

Kodachrome color photographs of American life, dating from the 1930s, 40s, & 50s. Selections via DailyKos.
posted by ijoshua at 11:19 AM PST - 12 comments

David's Palace "Discovered"

Archaeology in Israel has long been politicized. Perhaps never more than in recent years, when minimalist critiques of the Biblical Kingdom of David have found a ready audience in Muslims eager to deny a historical connection between modern Jews and the land of Israel. Even sober, scholarly discussions of chronology inevitably resonate with political implications.

So it should come as no surprise that the Israeli archaeologist Eilat Mazar's recent announcement that she may have discovered the foundation of King David's palacepdf in an area south of the Haram al-Sharif was funded, in large part, by the Ir David Foundationflash/sound and the neo-conservative Shalem Center.
posted by felix betachat at 11:08 AM PST - 17 comments

The Line

Steppin' is an hour-long documentary on an African-American dance tradition, most closely associated with historically black fraternities and sororities (though it's also found in high schools, clubs, and professional dance companies). Combining footwork, hand-clapping, chanting, singing, use of props, and changing configurations of dancers, it's a tightly coordinated dance form in which teams vie for honors in competitions nationwide.
posted by Miko at 8:18 AM PST - 20 comments

Thirty Short Poems About My Favorite Black Metal Band

Thirty Short Poems About My Favorite Black Metal Band

by John Darnielle of The Mountain Goats, author of Last Plane to Jakarta.
Some selections, in no particular order- the critically necessary discussion of Mayhem, the love story, the fans. He's only up to sixteen so far, but like an evil advent calendar, there will be more entries as the month progresses.
(and no, I won't spoil the name of the band- you'll find out)
posted by bobot at 8:01 AM PST - 39 comments

Becoming A Lion In Winter

Making an emergency car kit for road trips, especially in winter conditions.

How to travel safely in winter.

What to do if you're lost.

How to survive in the wilderness, according to the US Army. How to build an igloo. How to make emergency snowshoes. reviews personal survival kits, provides the story of five people stranded within sight of one of the US's largest cities, and blogs on the topic of emergency survival. And, last but not least, the forums weigh in on the Kim emergency.

Requiescat in pace, James Kim.
posted by scrump at 7:49 AM PST - 57 comments

You Don't Poop Where You Eat

Taco Bell E. Coli Out break from... green onions? This is the second major outbreak of E. Coli from vegetables this year. Where does E. Coli come from? "One of the root words of the family's scientific name, "enteric", refers to the intestine, and is often used synonymously with 'fecal'."
posted by SansPoint at 7:05 AM PST - 33 comments

Consider the Lobster

There are many ways to kill a Lobster. Some are cruel, some are extremely complicated, some are painless (or so they say). If you still feel terrible about eating them you can even just try a mock-up.
posted by darkripper at 5:14 AM PST - 57 comments

The Real World

If chat rooms were real. [You Tube video, via Digg]
posted by punkfloyd at 4:59 AM PST - 30 comments

Robot Love

Sherry Turkle, who used to believe in the benefits of robot pets, has changed her tune and now "finds human-machine love unsettling (pdf)". Tyrell:"We began to recognize in them a strange obsession. After all, they are emotionally inexperienced, with only a few years in which to store up the experiences which you and I take for granted. If we gift them with a past, we create a cushion or a pillow for their emotions, and consequently, we can control them better." Was he referring to us or them?
posted by sluglicker at 2:25 AM PST - 14 comments

Dirty, dangerous, and detailed.

Pearl Harbor ship salvage began immediately after the attack and continued until 1944. It was dirty, dangerous, detailed, (and discouraging) work for U.S. Navy salvors and divers, but their impressive repairs eventually returned eighteen sunken and damaged ships to wartime service. Only one was left where she fell. [More in the book Resurrection: Salvaging the Battle Fleet at Pearl Harbor.]
posted by cenoxo at 1:35 AM PST - 18 comments

December 6

A marriage made in the Antipodes

The Seventh State. An Australian federal parliamentary committee, tasked with looking into the harmonisation of the Australian and New Zealand legal systems, has concluded that the two countries should work towards a full union, or at least have a single currency and common markets.
NZ's Minister for Foreign Affairs has rubbished the idea as "parliamentary adventurism", but the Australian constitution provides for just such an eventuality.
One of the key hurdles for any union would be the Treaty of Waitangi, New Zealand's founding document. Misinterpreted, misunderstood, and hotly debated Te Tiriti has long been one of the reasons put for the difficult road facing New Zealand in becoming a republic. Having abolished appeals to the Privy Council, adopted a new electoral system, declared itself nuclear free (.pdf), taken France to court and opposed the war in Iraq, New Zealand has certainly embraced it's 'independence'. But a contracting sharemarket, muddled coalition building in government, and an increased focus on trans-Tasman alignment has lead some to support the idea of a less formal separation between the two countries. However a common currency has already been rejected by New Zealand's Finance Minister.
What hope then, for ANZAC union? And does it matter, when the rest of the world can't tell us apart?
posted by szechuan at 11:35 PM PST - 64 comments

The Pied Marksman of Surrey

The Memorial Gardens in Surrey has a pigeon problem, and has hired a marksman to come to town & conduct a three year program of pigeon sniping to resolve the issue. The people of Surrey respond, via some of the funniest letters to the newspaper I've ever read (letters published at the bottom of the article).
posted by jonson at 11:27 PM PST - 33 comments

New Zealand plans DMCA-like legislation

New Zealand may soon implement legislation very similar to the DMCA , if the latest draft of the Copyright Amendment Bill is passed. It would appear that the New Zealand government is about to make the same mistake made by the USA several years ago. Most specifically, they propose:
[To] introduce an offence (carrying a sentence of a fine not exceeding $150,000 or a term of imprisonment of up to 5 years, or both) for commercial dealing in devices, services, or information designed to circumvent technological protection measures
Her contact details are available online. We have a small window of opportunity to point out the problems and unintended consequences with similar legislation in other countries, and hopefully circumvent the same problems in New Zealand.
posted by pivotal at 11:27 PM PST - 17 comments

Operation Upshot-Knothole

Survivors talk about playing in fallout that landed like snow, of sand that melted like glass, of hair that fell out in handfuls, of lambs born with hearts outside their bodies, of school children dying of leukemia, of entire families being stricken -- while a government told them not to worry. Photos of Operation Upshot-Knothole here .
posted by j-urb at 11:25 PM PST - 13 comments


Without doing any work of your own, now you can make a movie about a few conspiracies to murder the exiled premier of Nigeria. Was it the cowboy, the wizard, or the well-endowed humanoid animal creature in the corner? Or was it an entirely different story altogether?
posted by Subcommandante Cheese at 10:54 PM PST - 4 comments

TSA Warning -- Don't Fart in Flight!!!

Fark/Fart Filter: One Fart Is All It Takes to Land a Plane. The terrorists have won!
posted by ericb at 9:00 PM PST - 49 comments

Men in (glass) suit?

"Dear Tokyo, why don't you have a building like this yet?" There are a lot of other ideas found on Ironic Sans.
posted by myopicman at 8:25 PM PST - 21 comments

And yet, no tomacco.

"The USDA PLANTS database provides standardized information about the vascular plants, mosses, liverworts, hornworts, and lichens of the U.S. and its territories." Among the highlights are a list of culturally significant plants and a searchable image gallery you can submit photos to. Forestry Images is a similar USDA-supported site dedicated to silviculture.

If that isn't enough for you, click on over to the Germplasm Resources Information Network. There, you'll find a smorgasbord of information on virtually all the food varieties commercially raised in the US: where the germplasm is held, lists of species at each site, detailed descriptions of individual accessions (e.g., cultivars), even who owns the Red Silk Radish. If it grows and you can eat, drink, smoke or inject it, the USDA probably has it cataloged. And if they don't, search one of these.
posted by cog_nate at 8:08 PM PST - 7 comments

Tsunami: The Aftermath

HBO and BBC2 present Tsunami: The Aftermath, their controversial dramatization of the disaster, shot in an area of Thailand devastated by the waves and featuring reluctant and poorly-paid survivors. Is it "too soon"?
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 5:58 PM PST - 14 comments

"I've always wanted be well leave my mark"

"YES! YES! YES!" He's got a website, 200+ photos on flickr, fans documenting their run-ins on youtube ([1] [2] [3] [4] [5]), is the subject of a documentary, and even has an inspiring backstory. (I won't mention the inevitable myspace page.) But life is not all red Santa hats and pushups for David "Zanta" Zancai, 36, of Toronto. A local TV station got him banned from downtown, Toronto's subway won't let him do his bare-knuckle schtick on trains, and now even the bitter pedants on Wikipedia wants him deleted. Pissed? Email him!
posted by docgonzo at 5:47 PM PST - 52 comments

Pangolins Need Love

Pangolins attain official "cute" status : Since Jonson was kind enough to share the Giant Amazonian Centipede, I thought an equally fascinating creature such as the pangolin (scaly anteater) deserved its own post. It's been mentioned in passing, but no one has drawn attention to the fact that it looks like a walking pine cone (YouTube), that the babies are carried on the mother's tail for several months, and that they come from a family (Pholidota) with only seven living species.

Of course, like nearly everything else on Earth, it is eaten or used as "medicine" by the Chinese, and the combination of deforestation/being eaten as bushmeat has reduced its numbers in Africa.

Unlike the centipede, it's probably not nightmare-inducing, but I don't think I'd want to trip over the giant pangolin on a dark night - especially since they can be up to six feet long. It's a beautiful animal, even inspiring poetry in some.
posted by Liosliath at 5:45 PM PST - 32 comments

chicken fried bacon

Chicken Fried Bacon.
posted by thirteenkiller at 5:23 PM PST - 63 comments

VP's daughter to be unwed mom.

Mary Cheney's got a bun in the oven. Complete with lukewarm response from Dick & Lynne. Lynne discussed previously.
posted by tula at 4:58 PM PST - 74 comments

The Baker's Dough

Baker to the rescue Is this guy the most powerful lawyer in the world? And he is now beginning not just to advise Bush but also it seems to dump Israel as an ally in favor of giving various Arab and Muslim groups--including our enemies-- what they have long wished for. As for the tiny democracy called Israel, they can have this for their future. Follow the dough (and oil)
posted by Postroad at 3:21 PM PST - 66 comments

The Loss of James Kim

The body of James Kim has been found. RIP
posted by somnambulist at 1:14 PM PST - 276 comments

The Firefox Cold War: “Mr. Mathowie, we must not allow an extension gap!”

Firefox really is amazingly extendable, but perhaps WAY too much so. [previously]
posted by rfbjames at 1:11 PM PST - 10 comments

Fiennes, Ranulph Fiennes

Meet Sir Ranulph Fiennes, the World's Greatest Living Explorer...
posted by quin at 12:17 PM PST - 14 comments

Can you hear me now?

Your cell phone is a 'roving bug.' But of course, you have nothing to hide.
posted by bukharin at 11:40 AM PST - 85 comments

Look at those cavemen go!

Please let it be true. NASA announces something pretty major, further prompting David Bowie's nagging question.
posted by gcbv at 11:32 AM PST - 50 comments

The Wii is not a clover vase.

If you've seen the Japanese safety manual for the Wii, you might have thought it was a bit excessive. But it really isn't, if you consider how many safety warnings they left out. Via core77.
posted by hydrophonic at 10:59 AM PST - 26 comments

The Metaphysics of Quality

Korea, the Beats, Quality, and Mental Illness: A fantastic interview with Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance's Robert Pirsig.
posted by malaprohibita at 9:03 AM PST - 51 comments

It's all in your head

Ramón y Cajal fathered a new science with his elegant sketches of neurons. Since then, the brain has been visualized in a variety of ways: from the microscopic to the functional, from the abstract to the beautiful. The connectome, intellectual heir to the human genome project and proteomics, aims to map the entire brain network as a means of understanding cognition and behavior. Pick your favorite brain metaphor here.
posted by logicpunk at 7:56 AM PST - 9 comments

Christmas, it seemed, doesn't come from a store...

Hundred Dollar Holiday
posted by anastasiav at 7:32 AM PST - 36 comments

Life before the Ashes

Stoolball is the medieval ancestor of cricket and baseball. First mentioned in print in 1671, it was reputedly played by milkmaids, who used their bare hands as bats. The game is still played today in some parts of south-east England, but luckily with frying pan-shaped contraptions instead. An important rule is that not following the spirit of the game will get you sent off the pitch. Here are some pictures of games in progress, along with other medieval bat-and-ball games such as Nipsy and Knur & Spell. Or, if you don't like ball games, try another medieval sport, dwile flonking (play online in flash).
posted by randomination at 7:07 AM PST - 21 comments

Britney Temple

Swedish cops kept record of beautiful women. Swedish border control agents at the ferry terminal on Kapellskär kept a binder, according to reports in the Swedish media, of "exceptionally beautiful women" that passed through the checkpoint.
posted by three blind mice at 3:52 AM PST - 132 comments

The perfect Christmas present for the little terrorist in your life

War on Terror - The Board Game or, if you prefer a different catastrophe: "Antarctica - Global Warming"
posted by patricio at 2:41 AM PST - 10 comments


Video of a hemispherectomy, a neurosurgical procedure to remove a hemisphere of the brain, on a 6-year-old girl with epilepsy. Previous post about the procedure. [Via Mind Hacks.]
posted by homunculus at 12:21 AM PST - 31 comments

December 5

Romanesque Churches of the Bourbonnais

Bourbonnais. No, not Bourbonnais, IL, but Bourbonnais, a historic province in France that flourished during the eleventh and twelfth centuries. In this area there are hundreds of churches built in the Romanesque style.

In 2004 Stephen Murray, an art history professor, and his students recieved a $500,000 grant to document, process, and archive data from the churches into a digital database, all available online.
posted by provolot at 11:51 PM PST - 13 comments

Japanese Urban Ruins PhotoGalleries

Amazing collection of several galleries full of Japanese "urban ruins" photos, including abandoned amusement parks, refineries, apartment blocks, hospitals, schools, bowling alleys, & much more, including Battleship Island, the (previously posted) abandoned coal mining island off the coast of Nagasaki. Via.
posted by jonson at 11:04 PM PST - 34 comments

The great fondue air miles disaster

Swiss cheese company offers 500 AA air miles in every packet. Straight away the frequent flying geeks spend a ton of money on buying case loads of cheese and fondue just to get the air miles. Almost immediately the scheming cheese makers say they've run out of air miles, retrospectively cancel the offer, and try and fob off customers with a cheap swiss army knife, one per household.
posted by w0mbat at 10:54 PM PST - 41 comments

Nutwood chum

Rupert Bear has been given a makeover so that he'll have more appeal to today's audience. Invented by Mary Tourtel in 1920 and appearing in the Daily Express newspaper, he also stars in the Rupert Little Bear Library and in a long-running set of annuals - which also championed the art of paperfolding (origami). [more inside]
posted by tellurian at 10:03 PM PST - 23 comments

Any and all acts deemed necessary

The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission was created in 1956 by the Mississippi Legislature in the wake of the Brown v. Board of Education decision. The Commission's express purpose was to "do and perform any and all acts and things deemed necessary and proper to protect the sovereignty of the state of Mississippi, and her sister states." In other words, it was an official tax-funded agency to combat the activities of the Civil Rights Movement. Their records are now online. [MI]
posted by marxchivist at 9:50 PM PST - 11 comments

Oh no you didn't

50 cent disses Oprah ...says chat show host is insufficiently "street".
posted by Artw at 9:08 PM PST - 70 comments

50 Greatest Commercials of the 1980s

The 50 Greatest Commercials of the 1980s. (via AdJab)
posted by Saucy Intruder at 7:44 PM PST - 51 comments

That’s a whole lotta candy

Lotta Pinata (text in Spanish) Ladies and gentleman, I introduce you to the world’s largest piñata. At 14.6 meters, that’s over 43 feet to the metrically-impaired, that is a whole lotta candy. Someone call Mr. Guinness.
posted by mannythedog at 5:59 PM PST - 6 comments

"Number one, Mr. Speaker"

Prime Minister's Questions is a weekly televised convention in the UK started in the 1950s during which Members of Parliament get a chance to hold their leader accountable for his or her actions. Sick of boring political meetings? "PMQ" is fast-paced, hip, heated, eloquent, insulting, and sometimes hilarious. In fact, the inherant humor of it is has been well explored.

But brits aren't the only ones; "Question Time", as it's called generically, has been adapted in other countries as well. Yet the show often shocks Americans since the concept of weekly unscripted access to leaders without giving days of question prep-time seems like a fantasy. Of course, maybe the alternative (0:41) is much worse.
posted by TimeTravelSpeed at 5:48 PM PST - 63 comments


Machine beaths Man. Deep Fritz (.pdf) has beaten world chess champion Vladimir Kramnikin in Bonn.
posted by four panels at 4:20 PM PST - 67 comments


There is irrefutable proof here that relates to 9/11, judicial and prosecutal corruption, corruption in the FBI, police corruption. I am firmly convinced that the members of the evil shadow government identified on this page, and their microwaving agents have come into being to bring to this world their ruler, SATAN and that the world is in its "end times" . I believe that these evil agents of SATAN are responsible for past acts which are in part described on this page. However I do believe that people can survive these times if they are prepared.
posted by boo_radley at 4:13 PM PST - 58 comments

Juice "Test Videos"

Juice "Test Videos"
posted by hama7 at 3:23 PM PST - 48 comments

You are now about to witness the strength of street knowledge

From reviled to revered. A lot has changed since N.W.A. formed twenty years ago this month. They brought gangster chic Straight Out of Compton (NSFW Youtube) and said Fuck the Police in 1989. Then came squabbling and diss tracks. Founder Eazy E died of AIDS a decade ago. Ice Cube still raps and makes movies. Dr. Dre went on to discover folks like Snoop Dogg, Eminem, 50 Cent and The Game and still produces. Both are superstars. Some other former members, um, aren't (NSFW audio). Want to learn more? Their manager Jerry Heller just wrote a book. [MI]
posted by Bookhouse at 3:13 PM PST - 25 comments

"My name's Spenser. I'm a private cop."

Streaming episodes of Spenser: For Hire Not available on DVD, not airing on any American channel. But available at the preceding link. Spenser! Hawk! Frigging HAWK! Watch it now and thank me later.requires activex plugin for Firefox

If Spenser makes you nostalgic for 80's Boston, watch Dana Hersey drop in at the Rat and grab a slice at the Pizza Pad in a Kenmore Square that no longer exists.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:23 PM PST - 33 comments

The Famous Five's new makeover

Five go adventuring in Disneyland. Enid Blyton, beloved British children's author, created tales of child detectives Julian, Dick, Anne, George and Timmy the dog in the 1940s. Deemed outdated, or at times downright offensive(.pdf), stories abound that the author's work has been banned from libraries or school reading lists in the past for being sexist and/or racist. Debate sprang up earlier this year over the publisher's attempts to update the books for a modern audience (read: American), which some interpreted as a politically correct attempt at sanitisation. The Famous Five was nevertheless voted by adults as their favourite series for children in 2005.
Now owned by brand business Chorion, the historic characters are being reimagined as Cole, Dylan, Jo and Allie in a 26-episode animated series from Disney. Some are delighted, others are not amused. Pour yourself some lashings of ginger beer, and remember Kirrin Island fondly. It may be the end of an era.
posted by szechuan at 1:59 PM PST - 19 comments

That shit is deep.

Dude, there are some fucked up creatures crawling around on the ocean floor.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:52 PM PST - 66 comments

The anti-Borlaug

Unsung Anti-Heroes: There are a few relatively unknown individuals who have saved more lives than anyone else on the planet. Norman Borlaug is credited with saving over a billion lives by starting the Green Revolution; he later won a Nobel Prize. Simon Petrov stopped the world from being annihilated in a nuclear war, and later won $1,000 from the San Francisco Bay Civic Association. Howard Florey, more than Alexander Fleming, made mass-produced penicillin possible, saving upwards of 50 million people, while Peter Safar invented CPR, and so on. But what about the opposite? One conservative site asks "who is the anti-Borlaug?" with a mix of more or less radical results. Leaving aside those who were directly responsible for mass deaths, who does the hive mind nominate as the anti-Borlaug?[more on some of of these heroes and anti-heroes inside]
posted by blahblahblah at 11:41 AM PST - 73 comments

A ship is safe in the harbor, but that is not why ships are built.

Make Life Better with a Sailboat-in-a-Closet. A multi-section plywood meditation for overcoming life's vicissitudes through apartment woodworking.
posted by paulsc at 10:53 AM PST - 8 comments

Attack of the Clones

Dutch artist Bert Simons, suffering from a mid-life crisis, decided to clone himself to become immortal. By means of state-of-the-art computer multiplication techniques he found a way for you to build your own Bert clone! (1.2 MB PDF) He is currently in the process to clone a female specimen. (NSFW: cardboard nudity) [via]
posted by kika at 10:51 AM PST - 4 comments

Let's Develop Our Mongolia!

TV5 is the first Mongolian TV station to broadcast over the internet. They offer a wide range of shows on contemporary Mongolian life and culture.
posted by jason's_planet at 10:42 AM PST - 17 comments

This ski mask gets extra points for thoughtfully including a faithful replica of this man’s weeping cold sores.

The Museum of Kitschy Stitches - A gallery of notorious knits.
posted by dobbs at 9:58 AM PST - 9 comments

Crayons as Art

Pete Goldlust creates crayon art, but it's not quite what you might be thinking. He also does playful wall installations, odd prints and other whimsical yet monstrous things.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:27 AM PST - 7 comments

Velvet Underground Acetate Breaks Record

What you have purchased for less than the price of a cup of coffee is arguably one of the most important "lost" music recordings out there. Record collector Warren Hill paid 75 cents at a yard sale in Chelsea, New York for an acetate in a plain cardboard sleeve. After some research, Hill's friends confirmed that the acetate disc, recorded by sound engineer Norman Dolph (who also wrote Reunion's "Life Is A Rock But The Radio Rolled Me"), was the third recording ever made by the Velvet Underground and the first album they ever did. A demo rejected by Columbia Records, the acetate is now up for auction on EBay, where the high bid is $124,640.50 and climbing, already breaking records as the most expensive LP ever sold at auction. (Bonus: see a post from a teenage eyewitness to the VU's 1966 session that produced this acetate.)
posted by jonp72 at 9:17 AM PST - 32 comments

Tis the season to be terrified

Scared of Santa (via)
posted by gottabefunky at 8:52 AM PST - 20 comments

"The name of the photographer cannot be revealed at this time."

"'Who has this picture?' he asked, his voice rising. 'Nobody.'" He won a Pulitzer in 1980 for "Spot News Photography" , but didn't, or couldn't, take credit. (via [1] [2] [3])
posted by bardic at 6:12 AM PST - 25 comments

The Penis is Bad, the Gun is Good.

The story, set in the distant future, involves a group of immortal intellectuals who lives isolated from an outside reality of unbridled savagery and brutality. No, I'm not talking about Metafilter, but Zardoz. The Penis is Bad, the Gun is Good. In the future the real threat isn’t Islamofascism or rogue Kryptonians, but bored immortals who dress like Belgians and can’t get it up. Did I mention Sean Connery in red S/M short shorts? You just can't make movies this wonderfully terrible anymore. (previously on MetaFilter, in the pre YouTube era, here)
posted by Meatbomb at 6:11 AM PST - 61 comments

Grandma's Little Helper

Grandma's Little Helper Tired of bluehairs clogging up the left lane doing 20? Apparently, there are companies who feel the same way. Aware Car has developed a computer system that tracks other cars and compensates for the losses in reflex that accompany aging. This is only one example of the new industry of providing technology to the elderly, who will reach record numbers in the next 20 years as the Baby Boomers continue to age. Pictures show GPS tracking for wheelchairs, "caller ID on steroids", and the new driving system in action.
posted by PreacherTom at 5:29 AM PST - 17 comments

Christmas in Darfur

What can two nerds from Chicago do about the crisis in Darfur? Donor fatigue means the marginal value of each life has effectively dropped to zero. Kill 5 people, kill 500, kill 500,000 - it makes no difference - each added fatality has absolutely no policy impact and won’t change the situation one iota. It’s not that as many as 500,000 (essentially an entire Seattle) have died in Darfur. The horrific thing is that they could kill another 500,000 and nobody will bat an eyelash.
posted by notsnot at 4:53 AM PST - 95 comments

Content Management Systems I Would Or Wouldn’t Fuck

Content Management Systems I Would Or Wouldn’t Fuck [via]
posted by feelinglistless at 3:05 AM PST - 58 comments

December 4

Moonbase: Alpha

NASA Plans Permanent Moonbase. The base, a potential stepping stone for further Mars exploration, will likely be situated near one of the poles. The advantages of a polar site (pdf) include a relatively moderate climate, possible hydrogen and oxygen resources, unexplored terrain and abundant solar power. They have apparently abandoned plans to use nuclear reactors, which is probably for the best.
posted by justkevin at 8:13 PM PST - 130 comments

Mommy's Alright, Daddy's Alright, They Just seem A Little Weird

One Of The Greatest Moments In The History Of Recorded Sound (YouTube)
posted by jonmc at 8:10 PM PST - 171 comments

The writing on the wall

Barcelona Street Art. Most places consider graffiti a form of vandalism, but in Barcelona, street art is embraced. The result is a city with public walls like giant canvases of modern art.
posted by Gamblor at 8:06 PM PST - 9 comments

War Were Declared.

It will always be known as the "date which will live in infamy," but this year - the 65th Anniversary - may mark the last time survivors can/will come together at the site to pay their respects to the fallen and to shake hands with their former adversaries. Hawaii affiliate KHNL News 8 has already started its 5-day long coverage of the ceremonies, which culminate on the morning of the 7th and will feature a live web feed and a keynote adress given by Tom Brokaw (@ 7:30am HST).

Some consequences of the attack inside...
posted by krippledkonscious at 7:24 PM PST - 27 comments

Ai tei vovo, tei vovo, veico, veico, veico

The coup d'état of Fiji continues today, having picked up again yesterday after letting the Friday deadline for the step down of PM Qarase pass and taking a couple days to enjoy the rugby and a weekend off. Unlike the violence generated largely by Native Fijian/Indo-Fijian tensions in the three previous coups, this latest act by Commodore Bainimarama appears bloodless thus far. It has again crippled tourism however, and, possibly more damaging, halted their trade in soldiers-for-hire.
posted by arruns at 7:02 PM PST - 24 comments

Laura Cooperman Carves Paper Into Art

Like the much mefi'd Peter Callesen, Laura Cooperman carves up plain white paper into extremely gorgeous intricate designs. Sadly, outside of her primary website not many examples of her work can be found online.
posted by jonson at 6:50 PM PST - 5 comments

Third time's a charm

Japanese Spider-Man seen here before, but this time he seems to be protected by a bandito type sporting a machine-gun guitar (but sadly, not one of these).
posted by mattoxic at 5:40 PM PST - 8 comments

Mother and children found, James Kim still missing

James Kim still missing but wife and kids OK. Searchers found Kati Kim and two children but James, who left his family in the car, is still missing after going out for help two days ago.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 5:13 PM PST - 88 comments

Feed me a cube

solving a rubik's cube can be difficult, and building a rubik's cube solving robot is probably even more difficult. So if you're going to do it, you might as well go all out. Of course you can try for yourself
posted by delmoi at 4:40 PM PST - 17 comments

The (Wedding) March of Progress

The grooms wore khakis and leather boots. Two game rangers, Vernon Gibbs and Tony Halls, became the first same-sex couple to legally wed in South Africa on December 1, a day after President Thabo Mbeki's government authorised gay marriages. SA is the 5th country allowing fullly equal same-sex marriage rights--Worldwide timeline of advances here, from 1979 until now. (In other news: Israel just officially recognized full rights for marriages made abroad, and Mexico City just approved Civil Unions)
posted by amberglow at 3:33 PM PST - 23 comments

The killer has been identified as Jesus Christ.

Satan is dead. Police are seeking a Jewish male in his early thirties in connection with the killing.
posted by EarBucket at 3:06 PM PST - 47 comments

What the Mideast needs is more cowbell Lionel Richie

From performing in a concert for Libyan leader Muammar Qadhafi, to serving as background music for the shock-and-awe bombing of Baghdad, Lionel Richie is much beloved throught the Arab world. A Nightline piece, and an upcoming GQ magazine article (via NPR) examine the Lionel of Arabia phenomenon.
posted by jaimev at 2:37 PM PST - 17 comments

Emilie Simon

Watching music 4:38 videos is a good 4:07way to learn a language 5:02, odd thing is I was 2:44 hoping to 3;03 learn Spanish 59:58. Emilie Simon of La Marche de l'empereur fame sings for us. All from the glorious youtube. Other than the last one from the rather better
posted by econous at 1:51 PM PST - 8 comments

Pass the Dutchie

How We Eat A photo gallery of families around the world, and what they eat over the course of one week. Text in French.
posted by Miko at 1:47 PM PST - 30 comments

'Tis The Season

'Tis the season for Christmas letters -- spreading cheer or showing off? Tips for writing your own -- serious and silly.
posted by ericb at 1:36 PM PST - 11 comments

How the Shoe Bomber do.

Window Into a Terrorist’s Isolation. British citizen and convicted shoe bomber Richard Reid plays Trivial Pursuit.
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 1:00 PM PST - 20 comments

"A piece of furniture"

Window Into a Terror Suspect’s Isolation. American citizen and enemy combatant Jose Padilla gets a root canal. [Via Hullabaloo.]
posted by homunculus at 12:42 PM PST - 37 comments

Punishable Aggression

Islam Outlaws Female Genital Mutilation "After listening to several international physicians, they pronounced the sensational decision to classify the custom of female genital mutilation (FGM) as punishable aggression and crime against humanity. As a result, the custom can no longer be practiced by Muslims. Now awareness of this decision has to be spread in the 33 affected countries." [+ WHO] and [+ wp]
posted by FunkyHelix at 11:27 AM PST - 80 comments

We personally recommend you don't buy this.

If you like this book, you will not like this book. UnSuggester suggests books that you will not like. [via /.]
posted by Sticherbeast at 11:20 AM PST - 50 comments

Grob spike-attack, Santasiere's folly, and the vulture defense

Chess has a long, if somewhat shrouded, history, with beautiful chess pieces found dating from the 5th century. It has spawned hundreds of fascinating stories, and many interesting names for moves. For the last five decades, the history of chess and computers have been intertwined in many ways. Chess continues to adapt to a new age, with controversies around computer-assisted cheating, attempts to sex-up chess books, thousands of variants, and an amazing online database that can search through recorded games for the last 200 years.
posted by blahblahblah at 10:43 AM PST - 5 comments


Your favorite album sucks. It's December, so you know what that means - best of 2006 album lists! While everyone eagerly awaits the latest Christmas card from Ignited Minds pass the time deriding/praising your favorite/hated indie/hipster/industry site for recognizing/snubbing (fill in the blank with band of choice here)! Lists, lists and more lists. While some think EOY lists are pointless or conceited, others find worst of lists are much better. This Mefite finds them an early Christmas list of torrent downloading goodness. And if you're having problems making your list please refer to this handy dandy cheat sheet.
posted by daHIFI at 9:45 AM PST - 33 comments

Is this the true ultimate driving machine?

Is this BMW version what some were waiting for? I've heard about complaints on hybrid performance. BMW claims to be the best in performance. But did they miss the boat?
posted by wiggles at 9:38 AM PST - 33 comments

Lisa: Look at me! Grade me! Evaluate and rank me! I'm good, good, good and oh so smart!

Socialite Rank. At least coming up with a list of who will be first up against the wall during the revolution just got a little easier.
posted by geoff. at 8:57 AM PST - 32 comments

The Pororoca

The Pororoca is an Amazonian tidal bore that generates waves up to 12 feet high which can last for over half an hour. Surfers from all around the world have visited Brazil in order to ride this mega-wave. Here are some videos:
The Pororoca Phenomenon (4:28)
Pororoca 1 of 2 (3:11)
Pororoca 2 of 2 (3:21)
Pororoca (26 minutes long)
posted by jason's_planet at 8:55 AM PST - 15 comments

PIRG/Fund/GCI = WalMart/Enron/Exxon

The Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs) / the Fund for Public Interest Research (the Fund) / Grassroots Campaigns Inc (GCI) = the WalMart/Enron/Exxon of the progressive/liberal activist industry. [much more and much better linkage inside]
posted by snortlebort at 8:28 AM PST - 39 comments

Bolton stepping down

Bolton to step down from U.N.
posted by Navelgazer at 8:01 AM PST - 52 comments

What a pratfall!

The Berlin District Court has ruled that Deutsche Bahn must rebuild whole sections of the new Hauptbahnhof according to the architect's plans, setting a spectacular precedent. Berlin's new main train station, the Hauptbahnhof, cuts a solitary figure in the surrounding wasteland as it awaits an urban development that will complement its ambition, aesthetics and vast dimensions. But the verdict pronounced by the Berlin District Court on Tuesday November 28 has brutally nipped this development process in the bud. The judges ruled that the German rail company Deutsche Bahn has unlawfully violated the intellectual property rights of the station's architect, Meinhard von Gerkan. The rail company must rebuild the station according to the architect's plans. The station opened in May this year after a 13-year construction period.
posted by parmanparman at 7:33 AM PST - 41 comments

Expo 67

Expo 67 photography
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:01 AM PST - 23 comments

Human time capsules

There are about 250,000 centenarians alive today, including several hundred "supercentarians" aged 110+ years. Jerry Friedman, founder of Earth's Elders Foundation, has spent the past four years on a landmark project to introduce the world to the oldest people on earth. And in a similar endeavor, photographer Mark Story has been capturing portraits and stories of people from around the globe who are Living in Three Centuries.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:43 AM PST - 16 comments

Pepsi Bru

Irn Bru Irn Bru Irn Bru
posted by the cuban at 6:18 AM PST - 43 comments

No Borat, but close

Judge Jamie delivers (youtube)
posted by Mach3avelli at 5:50 AM PST - 11 comments

A Conversation With Steven Colbert

A Conversation With Steven Colbert [video]: Covering issues from truthiness to anti-Semitism in comedy to boxers vs. briefs, Colbert spent over an hour on Friday answering questions at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow at 4:55 AM PST - 14 comments

Meme tracking

Is it science? Or just link whoring? "Measuring the speed of spread of a meme across the internet." (Does Metafilter count as a "high traffic site" for his purposes?)
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 4:32 AM PST - 8 comments

the bester on the bestof

Unlike the time you gave up on Slashdot, you eventually came back to Metafilter.
posted by progosk at 4:07 AM PST - 41 comments

Cover your ass.

Avoid office party lawsuits: buy insurance and distribute the rules in advance; don't let them drink; no flirting; bring a recording device; no religious stuff; don't dance with staff members.

Have a safe holiday.
posted by Meatbomb at 3:35 AM PST - 28 comments

All octopus, all the time

Octopus escaping through one inch hole. Octopus eats shark. Camouflaged octopus. Octopus attacks mini-sub. (Google videos)
posted by Turtles all the way down at 2:58 AM PST - 44 comments

The Gospel of YouTube according to y2karl

Five Blind Boys Of Alabama - Too Close
Supreme Angels - Hush Hush
Soul Stirrers - Listen To The Angels Sing
King Louis Narcisse - This Little Light Of Mine
Goldia Hayes with the Harmonizing Four - Beams of Heaven
Sister Rosetta Tharpe & Choir - Up Above My Head
Hall Johnson Choir - Little Black Sheep
Norfleet Brothers - I Am A Pilgrim And A Stranger
Caravans - No Coward Soldier
Soul Stirrers - I'm A Soldier In The Army Of The Lord
Gospel Paraders - Have You Got Good Religion
Pilgrim Jubilee Singers - Testify
Imperial Gospel Singers - The Lord Will see You Through
Lucy Rodgers Singers - Hold To God's Unchanging Hand

YouTube in the Holy Spirit--mostly old school black gospel...
posted by y2karl at 12:19 AM PST - 53 comments

December 3

July 4 might be Independence Day in another way, too

Cost of Government Day - "n. the date of the calendar year, counting from January 1, on which the average American has earned enough in cumulative gross income to pay for his or her share of government spending (total federal, state, and local) plus the cost of regulation."
posted by Gyan at 10:55 PM PST - 16 comments

moebius futurism

The Long Tomorrow is a short, twelve page, comic by Moebius produced in 1956-76 which tells the noir story of a private detective hired to pick up a parcel for a sultry dame. The art and the world it depicted was visionary; a world that is one giant, teeming, vertical metropolis. [via]
posted by dhruva at 10:05 PM PST - 37 comments

Cigarettes packs by brand

Cigarettes packs by brand.
posted by hama7 at 6:52 PM PST - 23 comments

Scream and Run Away

Lemony Snicket (Daniel Handler in real life), author of the 13 books in "A Series of Unfortunate Events" [Flash], has now released the album A Tragic Treasury [Sound] in which he plays the acordian. The CD also features Stephin Merritt, with whom Handler was in the band called The Magnetic Fields. Handler is touring the country to plug the album and latest book. [via NPR]
posted by niles at 6:27 PM PST - 22 comments

Santa's Sackfull of Obscure Christmas Music

So you're in the mood for some Christmas music, but you're tired of all the old standards. Not to worry, the web has you covered courtesy of several vinyl sharing blogs. First off, there's Check the Cool Wax, with the soundtrack to Rankin/Bass's Night Before Christmas, Pee-Wee's Christmas Special, Yuletide Disco, Western Christmas Songs & Exciting Christmas Stories featuring Batman, Superman & Wonder Woman. Much, much more inside.
posted by jonson at 5:25 PM PST - 28 comments

Superman Had It Easy

Hovering in History
From the HZ-1 Aerocycle, which looks like someone standing on top of a blender, to the VZ-8P "Airgeep" to the WASP X-Jet aka The Flying Pulpit and the collapsible Rotorcycle as well as the Inspector Gadget-esque Hoppi-Copter, the Army has dropped a ton of R&D money on personal flight machines. Of course, the newer iterations of personal flying machines are no less fascinating, like the SoloTrek, but it seems the Dream of Personal Flight will remain a dream for a while longer.
posted by fenriq at 4:43 PM PST - 20 comments

Pretty Pictures

Ed Book adds joy to my life.
posted by thirteenkiller at 4:40 PM PST - 15 comments


(to the tune of “My Country ‘Tis of Thee”) My country used to be/ Sweet land of liberty/ That once was true/ Until the FCC/ Chose what we hear and see/ On radio and on TV/ FCC FU!
Choral and heavy metal versions also available for download.
posted by CCBC at 4:33 PM PST - 4 comments

German animator Hans Fischerkoesen

1942's Weather-Beaten Melody [youtube], an innovative nine-minute cartoon by German animator Hans Fischerkoesen in which insects discover an abandoned phonograph in a meadow. "To fully appreciate Fischerkoesen's daring, one must remember that the Nazis had forbidden jazz and swing as an Afro-Judaic plot to undermine traditional German culture," says William Moritz in "Resistance And Subversion in Animated Films of The Nazi Era: the Case of Hans Fischerkoesen." Before and after subverting Goebbels' battle with Disney, Fisherkoesen made lively cartoons for Philips light bulbs, grocery stores, cigarettes, stockings and digestive aids. [Shorter version of Moritz' article, with pics] [via Glyph Jockey]
posted by mediareport at 4:15 PM PST - 10 comments


Web 2.0 pixel poster. From the shop of kickass pixel artist eboy (blog, with one nsfw image)
posted by delmoi at 3:19 PM PST - 36 comments

Protect our freedom

Freedom River, a parable as told by Orson Welles. (youtube) (via Andrew Sullivan)
posted by caddis at 1:52 PM PST - 6 comments

Bargain Bin Bliss

TM without the ™. When he's not directing one of the best movies of the year or sitting on intersections with cows, David Lynch is a vocal advocate of Transcendental Meditation. In his new book Catching the Big Fish, he talks about the Box and the Key, meeting Fellini, the Suffocating Rubber Clown Suit, why he doesn't do DVD commentaries--and TM, which he calls "the experience that does everything." If you're intrigued by TM but sketched out by the organization and the $2,500 fee, perhaps you'd like to know that there is a cheap, downloadable alternative.
posted by muckster at 1:27 PM PST - 33 comments


If you work at Langley and you need a break from actual intelligence gathering, you can always try to crack the code to the sculpture right outside the cafeteria window. Kryptos is a sculpture by James Sanborn located on the CIA grounds which contains a four-part coded message: sections 1-3 have been solved (with Sanborn admitting he made a typo in section 2). Perhaps you'd like to join Elonka (and the hive mind) in having a go at section 4.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:52 AM PST - 14 comments

underwater forest logging with robots

Triton Sawfish - underwater forest logging with robots.
posted by stbalbach at 9:13 AM PST - 41 comments

Pinochet is dying... again.

Former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet is in serious condition but stable after heart attack. Just last week he celebrated his 91th birthday and said that he accepted 'political responsibility' for what happened during his dictatorship. Also, before the heart attack he was under house arrest for the disappearance of two persons and being investigated because of tax evasion. -- The popular reaction in Chile has been similar to other occasions: some celebrate; some are sad, but most just want an undivided Chile.
posted by Memo at 8:43 AM PST - 35 comments

Oh, I wish we had the image tag again...

Bare naked travel? (Previously on MeFi: here, except now they're actually doing it, and here). The TSA wants to see you naked. Just don't paint "Kip Hawley Is An Idiot" on your torso in Pepto-Bismol before you go to the airport.
posted by at 8:29 AM PST - 51 comments

Carne Asada

The House of Death A DHS/DEA/DoJ/US Media coverup. Another victory in the War on Drugs?
When 12 bodies were found buried in the garden of a Mexican house, it seemed like a case of drug-linked killings. But the trail led to Washington and a cover-up that went right to the top.
Other online coverage (1, 2, 3)
posted by i_am_a_Jedi at 7:43 AM PST - 26 comments

avril showers

'Cause 2006 is butt naked. How to Create a Sexy Pop Star, a video clip from the film "Before the Music Dies."
posted by four panels at 6:20 AM PST - 48 comments

Russian Psychoanalytic Art Mystery

"This was painted by a person with a rare and severe mental disorder. He was constantly seeing his own fantasies all around him. He also had a certain phobia..." (via Digg). The image is an imperfect reproduction of a particular postcard dated 1972. A blogger (in Russian) claims his psychiatry professor found one aspect of this eerie painting that reveals the patient's disorder. Allegedly, only one of his students in the past 15 years has figured it out. The psychoanalytic mystery has piqued the interest (in Russian) of the online community. A number of supplemental hints from the professor and thousands of guesses later, the case remains unsolved. Skeptics have already decried the mystery as a traffic-boosting hoax, but a few signs still point to its authenticity. Most notably, the artist's reproduction of another classic painting contains the following note: "transferred in 1990 from Moscow mental hospital."
posted by themadjuggler at 2:49 AM PST - 113 comments

Mandelbrot on Fractals as A Theory of Roughness.

A talk with Benoît Mandelbrot, entitled Fractals in Science, Engineering and Finance (Roughness and Beauty) [video, 80mins, realplayer] about fractals as A Theory of Roughness.
posted by MetaMonkey at 12:32 AM PST - 5 comments

December 2

Fighting in stop motion

Tony vs. Paul A stop motion battle between two friends turned enemies.
posted by bob sarabia at 11:52 PM PST - 37 comments

Send a text message to a cell phone via email easily

Teleflip is a free service for sending SMS (text messages) via email to any cell phone, all you need to do is send to Try it out. Replies will automatically be sent back to your email.
posted by onalark at 7:05 PM PST - 55 comments

Chris Ware Gallery

This is the largest gallery of works by the amazingly intricate designer/cartoonist/artist Chris Ware (author of Jimmy Corrigan) that I've ever seen online. However despite its breadth, it does not include his four covers for last month's New Yorker. Ware completists, also enjoy this (previously posted) gallery of Chris Ware papercraft toys.
posted by jonson at 5:23 PM PST - 16 comments

The Liberals reboot

Stephane Dion has been elected Canadian Liberal Party leader at a convention in Montreal. Barely third (by two votes) on last night's first ballot, Dion gained support today through each of the next three ballots he needed to reach the 50%+1 level. An Quebec academic known for his federalist writings, he was originally recruited by former PM Jean Chrétien to fight Quebec separatists in the mid-nineties. He served as intergovernmental affairs minister for several years under Chrétien, then later organized the UN Climate Change summit as environment minister. He now goes to Ottawa as Leader of the Opposition, in hopes of soon replacing current PM Stephen Harper.
posted by bowline at 4:32 PM PST - 121 comments

Baby (Jesus) needs a new airplane?

What does God need with a private jet? Benny Hinn's latest pitch for donations. [via]
posted by clevershark at 2:59 PM PST - 191 comments

Soul Marketing 2.0

Old and Busted: Selling Your Soul. The New Hotness: Raffling It Off.
(Why not? I'm already going to hell.) (via mentalfloss)
posted by wendell at 2:48 PM PST - 14 comments

Winthrop Kellogg

Winthop Kellogg was a psychologist in the early and mid-20th century who studied echolocation in animals and people. He is most notorious, however, for an experiment in which he raised an infant chimpanzee named Gua alongside his own baby son Harold. They seemed to get along pretty well (.mov).
posted by gottabefunky at 2:16 PM PST - 8 comments

"We're dead, come and get us."

The Young Brothers Massacre. The gunfight that killed the most law enforcement officials is US history did not happen at Waco or Kansas City, but just outside of Springfield, MO (which was also home to the first famous "high noon" shootout of the Wild West). On January 2, 1932, the two Young Brothers murdered the six policemen who'd come to arrest one of them for killing a town marshall. Not much later, they met their own end. This 1932 quickie pulp remains the best (or at least most readable) version of the story. (Warning: a few postmortem photos are included).
posted by Bookhouse at 2:01 PM PST - 8 comments

Girls Gets Car for Good Attendance

Wyoming girl gets new car for good attendance. In the latest set of incentives for high school students to stay in school, prizes of $10,000 or a new car are being given away in at least a half dozen school districts in the US. Some say paying doesn't pay off, given flat graduation rate changes.
posted by Hot Like Your 12V Wire at 1:44 PM PST - 23 comments

The Economist: The World in 2007

In 2007 there will be lots of anniversaries, the web will keep killing the television star, the popcorn will taste familiar, humankind will come closer still to achieving immortality, and text messaging will conquer Africa. And although the spread of democracy is stalling (don't worry however - the Swedes still win (pdf)), it's still down to George Bush.

The Economist: The World in 2007.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 11:10 AM PST - 38 comments

Business and the decline of political liberty

The Mayfair Set [Google Video]. A BBC Documentary series on how City of London bankers systematically dismantled British industry from the 1960s-90s and removed the power of the state to protect people from the greed of the market A thought provoking documentary from Adam Curtis whose other documentaries The Power of Nightmares and The Century of the Self have been previously discussed and well received on Mefi. It is almost four hours long but well worth the effort.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 10:26 AM PST - 23 comments

Just when you thought it was safe to order the appetizer

OK, I’ve been a good American. I’ve done the turkey and stuffing routine for more than three decades now. But next year is gonna be different. Next year I shall celebrate Thanksgiving by flying out to Iceland, where I intend to harpoon a big ugly shark. My friends and I will then bury the bugger in a gravel pit. After several weeks, it’ll be good and rotten. Then we’ll hang the strips of meat up to dry. When it’s ready, we’ll slam down some shots of the local liquor and consume dainty little cubes of fermented shark flesh. We’ll finish the feast with pumpkin pie.
posted by jason's_planet at 9:09 AM PST - 53 comments

European Fields: Landscape of Lower League Football

European Fields: Landscape of Lower League Football Gorgeous shots of some football pitches throughout Europe. Taken by Dutch Photographer Hans van der Meer. From SpoFi
posted by psmealey at 8:41 AM PST - 14 comments


Lenticulations :: Animated 3D Multiple Lens Photographs
posted by crunchland at 8:14 AM PST - 12 comments

Heli-Africa Photodiary

Heli-Africa - Wildlife photographer Michael Poliza's photo journal from a just completed 2 month helicopter tour from Hamburg to Cape Town. These are a few samples to potentially whet the appetite.
posted by peacay at 5:06 AM PST - 8 comments


War Photography Visual insight and more from the photographer Simon Norfolk.
posted by hard rain at 3:36 AM PST - 8 comments

December 1

Sexual Consent

In the future there will be no sex without Sexual Consent.
posted by Occams Hammer at 11:59 PM PST - 38 comments

Projekt "Map"

Das Projekt "Map"
posted by Tlogmer at 8:34 PM PST - 18 comments

The rise and decline of the book

Conventional wisdom says that new media -- Internet, cable television, satellite radio, videogames -- is competing with books, putting them at long-term risk if not decline. "The conventional wisdom is wrong". Special report from Forbes.
posted by stbalbach at 8:15 PM PST - 37 comments

Who are the ad wizards who came up with this one?

Rolling Rock is sorry for their offensive new ad. Never mind that no one was complaining about the ad because they never aired it-- they are spending millions on radio, web and print media to let you a) see the ad b) understand how terrible it is and c) know how very, very sorry they are to have made it. The recently bought out Rolling Rock brand is hoping this manufactured controversy will somehow convince people to drink their beer.
posted by justkevin at 7:12 PM PST - 109 comments

"An ultra-urban island of individuality in a sea of look-alike dwellings"

The Playboy Townhouse. Posh Plans for Exciting Urban Living, circa 1961. via
posted by Chrischris at 6:42 PM PST - 24 comments

Landmine! Has taken my dice, taken my land, taken my gamepiece!

Remember Dice Wars? Remember how everyone wanted it to be multiplayer? Well, Ryan Dewsbury, creator of gpokr, has loosed kdice on the world. Your gpokr login works for kdice, too. (via jayisgames)
posted by Eideteker at 6:08 PM PST - 18 comments

free video art to go

ArtPod --video art for your iPod, from Artnode Denmark
posted by amberglow at 3:37 PM PST - 3 comments

1970s Dept Store Catalogs

Since April of this year, the blogger over at PlaidStallions has been dutifully scanning the most interesting/unique pages from 1970's department store catalogs (among other things) and posting the images online with commentary.
posted by jonson at 3:31 PM PST - 24 comments

From the Critically Acclaimed Fans of Scrubs and Arrested Development

Make an independent sitcom? These guys did. On a shoestring budget, a collection of very funny folk have created a 22-minute-long pilot episode of Break a Leg. Heavily influenced by Arrested Development, I found it funnier than most sitcoms I see on TV. The next episode is apparently a few months away.
posted by Wataki at 2:24 PM PST - 32 comments

Treading lava in the lake of fire...

posted by MaxVonCretin at 1:16 PM PST - 45 comments

Bill Moyers speech at West Point

Bill Moyers speech at West Point on "The Meaning of Freedom." I repeat: These are not palatable topics for soldiers about to go to war; I would like to speak of sweeter things. But freedom means we must face reality: “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” Free enough, surely, to think for yourselves about these breaches of contract that crudely undercut the traditions of an army of free men and women who have bound themselves voluntarily to serve the nation even unto death. Previously on MetaFilter: after 9/11, inequality, religion and democracy, the environment, right-wing media, public broadcasting. Wikipedia.
posted by russilwvong at 12:03 PM PST - 35 comments

Jukebox Heroes

Before music videos on MTV, even before Scopitones (previously on MeFi 1, 2, 3), there were Soundies. In a brief period during the early 40s, patrons of bars, diners and bus stations could slip a dime into a Panoram jukebox and see a three-minute 16mm video clip projected inside the machine. Soundies featured popular musicians of the era including Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Nat King Cole, and Louis Armstrong. You can also find Soundies at, including a great one from Reg Kehoe and his Marimba Queens.
posted by Otis at 11:56 AM PST - 7 comments

Little flash doodly thingies for your Friday

thesquarerootof-1 (Biproducts) Bunch of little interactive flash designs that mesh motion and sound. Here is more info about this project by James Tindall.
posted by chillmost at 11:40 AM PST - 5 comments

From an infection control standpoint, the perfect solution would be....

How to Cough or Sneeze
see also
posted by anastasiav at 10:41 AM PST - 31 comments

Plagiarism? Hey, that's MY bit!

Leno, Other Comics Sue Over Joke Books Quote books have been legal and established as fair use, but the lawsuit claims that Ms. Brown sent representatives to comedy clubs to record comedians' routines to copy the jokes into print. Judy defends her fair use rights on Amazon's page for a previous book.
posted by basilwhite at 10:37 AM PST - 28 comments

Mmmm... pecans...

A Pie-cosahedron and instructions on how to make it. Hint: start with lots of Karo syrup, some sheet metal, and plenty of time. That's not good enough? Try the fractal pie, baked in its own custom-made backyard oven! These both came from the wonderful site, instructables, which will reward you with many fun projects that you might even be able to do yourself.
posted by math at 10:28 AM PST - 9 comments

America's continued love affair with the automobile

A study released by CERA has some interesting tidbits: the average motorist in 2005 used 703 gallons of gas, and drove 40 percent more than 25 years ago; the US has 1,148 registered personal vehicles for every 1,000 licensed drivers; the percentage of vehicles that are SUVs (including minivans and light trucks) is slowly going down from 55% in 2005 to 53% in 2006; the average fuel consumption for all vehicles is 19.8 mpg in 2005, a drop from when it peaked at 20.2 in 2001; and the share of U.S. household budgets going to gasoline and oil has has been relatively stable for decades, at about 3.8 percent in 2006.
posted by jaimev at 10:03 AM PST - 18 comments

Buy a house or you will die.

If you continue to wait, you may never be able to afford to get into the housing market. The National Association of Home Builders wants you to buy a home now. Should you wait? No, no, no, no! Via Housing Panic.
posted by brain_drain at 9:43 AM PST - 91 comments

Let's hear it for scouse tony

Function at the junction (Northern Soul For Work) a wonderful short film about Northern Soul.
posted by sgt.serenity at 8:00 AM PST - 27 comments

First major open-source MMO?

Raising for Ryzom. Saga Of Ryzom's parent company is having some sort of undisclosed trouble, and a group of users are raising funds to purchase the source code and art assets. So far, they've raised 60k in euros.
posted by ®@ at 7:56 AM PST - 3 comments

Heart of Darkness

In the 12 months ending in March 2005, the South African police reported more than 22,000 cases of child rape. In Zimbabwe, at least 2,000 child rape victims have died of AIDS since 1998. “Everybody should be aware that things like this should not happen to children.” This is the scourge of sex abuse of girls in Africa.
posted by four panels at 7:17 AM PST - 22 comments

Stephen Colbert v. The Decemberists

Stephen Colbert has a “Green Screen Challenge”. The Decemberists have their own green screen challenge. Colbert calls them idea stealing jerks and issues a "Second Green Screen Challenge": "to edit me into the Decemberists' green screen challenge... Let's see how well they perform their trademark brand of hyper-literate prog rock when I'm slicing off their legs at the knee." Now the Decemberists are saying that awesomely wielding lightsabers was their idea, and that Colbert must have copied them, and they have the "Decemberists vs Stephen Colbert Guitar Solo Challenge".
posted by ND¢ at 7:08 AM PST - 60 comments

Google loses one battle to the competition.

Google Answers Goes 404. Is it too much competition from Yahoo! answers or Metafilter?
posted by JJ86 at 6:59 AM PST - 21 comments

Sodium Azide.

There is a killer lurking in your local auto wrecking yard. Sodium Azide, the chemical used in automobile air bags, is available to anyone who asks for it. Conceivably anyone could obtain several pounds of this poison, yet it takes only a few grams to kill. A late model SUV will have enough in it's air bags to kill a couple of hundred people.

It explodes. It kills on contact with the skin. It kills via air, food, or water. It is odorless and colorless. There is no antidote. Even minor exposure will result in permanent damage to brain cells. University of Arizona atmospheric scientist Eric Betterton was one of the first to expose the hazards of this unregulated material in 2000. The author J. A. Jance used it as the poison of choice in her book 'Partners in Crime'.

The perfect terrorist weapon? It would seem so, but the Federal government doesn't regulate it's post-manufacture distribution. Got a grudge? Go pick up a few hundred pounds.
posted by altman at 1:00 AM PST - 75 comments

Bringing Bush to Court

United States v. George W. Bush et al. Retired federal prosecutor Elizabeth de la Vega has written a hypothetical indictment for a hypothetical grand jury charging President George W. Bush, Vice President Richard Cheney, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and former Secretary of State Colin Powell of violating Title 18, United States Code, Section 371, thereby commiting a conspiracy to defraud the United States by tricking the nation into war. Though a work of fiction, the evidence presented is real. Part 1 is the introdutction, part 2 is the indictment, and part 3 is the beginning of grand jury testimony, with more to come over the next few days.
posted by homunculus at 12:42 AM PST - 23 comments