July 2011 Archives

July 31

Perspectives on Therapy as a Practitioner and client

Dr. Rob Dobrienski is a Manhattan therapist who blogs with honesty and humor on shrinktalk.net about his practice and topics interesting to both laypersons with an interest in psychology and therapy as well as therapists in current practice. [more inside]
posted by sweetkid at 9:11 PM PST - 18 comments

Historical Crayola rainbow

Crayola Color Chart 1903-2010. It's not just Green Yellow and Yellow Green anymore. (via DataPointed.) (More DataPointed color-data goodness.)
posted by escabeche at 8:45 PM PST - 77 comments

"I suppose people can go through an entire lifetime without questioning God and a religion that they were born into"

A few months ago, The New Statemen asked a number of public figures "why they believe in god." Last week, they asked a number of public figures "to explain why they don't."
posted by bardic at 8:12 PM PST - 164 comments


In the nine years since its last appearance in the blue*, Taquitos.net has grown to more than 5,000 snack reviews. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 6:20 PM PST - 35 comments

Kung Fu, Soccer and Volleyball combo: Sepak Takraw

When you combine Kung Fu, Soccer and Volleyball you get an awesome sport called Sepak Takraw | the film version, Libas | 'Just Give Me The Damn Sepak Takraw Ball'. A few more examples: grass court | women's match . About the Sepak Takraw ball. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 5:22 PM PST - 20 comments

Love's labours... won?!

Freedom to love, tested in Afghanistan. When Rafi Mohammed, a 17-year-old Tajik Afghani, met and fell in love with his girlfriend Halima, he did not think about the rage that would erupt in her ethically conservative Hazara neighborhood, or of the lengths to which the local police and religious leaders would go to protect the couple from an angry mob in a region of Afghanistan which has seen fewer attacks recently and has been restored to local control. Despite -- or perhaps because of -- the violence that ensued, many of the locals have found themselves opposed to the fundamentalists, unwilling to see another pair of young lovers executed, as happened under Taliban rule. (video, NSFW) ""I feel so bad. I just pray that God gives this girl back to me. I'm ready to lose my life. I just want her safe release. . . It’s the heart. When you love somebody, you don’t ask who she is or what she is. You just go for it.”
posted by markkraft at 2:50 PM PST - 34 comments

One-Minute Weird Tales

S.S. Prazak's "Hat Tricks", Stuart Jaffe's "The Curse and the Revenge" and Bob Wilson's "Fences" are all One-Minute Weird Tales, strange and often disturbing little stories published online by the Weird Tales Magazine as short videos. [more inside]
posted by Jelly at 2:32 PM PST - 6 comments

shoot ... there goes daddy

Holy Smoke - "The process of having cremated ash placed in live ammunition begins when you contact us. You tell us what type of hunting or shooting that the decedent practiced and we can help you decide what will best suit your needs....1 Pound of ash is enough to produce 250 shotshells."
posted by madamjujujive at 2:10 PM PST - 46 comments

"What a choice: Acknowledged but harassed, or ignored and denied recognition of one's womanhood."

On Harassment and the Marking of Visible Womanhood [more inside]
posted by flex at 2:10 PM PST - 209 comments

Grifters, unite!

Cash WinFall, or how to turn the lottey into a real moneymaker. In Massachusetts, one state-sponsored lottery has become a game you can't lose....if you know the trick. A tale of math, grinding and grifting in the Boston Globe.
posted by Diablevert at 2:02 PM PST - 47 comments

Green Is Not A Creative Colour

The performance collective This Is It has created a video singing the praises of creativity: Don't Hug Me I'm Scared. (via)
posted by The Whelk at 12:04 PM PST - 15 comments

Afghanistan through an iPhone

The War in Hipstamatic: A rare and beautiful look at Afghanistan, through an iPhone.
posted by homunculus at 11:30 AM PST - 96 comments

I do not have an eating disorder

I Do Not Have an Eating Disorder is an autobiographical on-going web-comic by a 27-year-old Australian woman who is coming to terms with her realization that she has anorexia. [more inside]
posted by craichead at 10:28 AM PST - 69 comments

The Mathematical Theory of Cities.

"Every week for the forseeable future, . . ., more than a million people are being added to our cities." Geoffrey West applies the paradigms of physics to cities, businesses, biological and social sciences. Extra. Previously.
posted by Obscure Reference at 9:50 AM PST - 20 comments

But what does God think?

How Christian is Terrence Malick's Tree Of Life? [more inside]
posted by philip-random at 9:42 AM PST - 88 comments

3D interactive journey into the Great Pyramid of Khufu

3D interactive journey into the Great Pyramid of Khufu. More from BBC. Tour in and around the pyramid guided or on your own. Also explains the theory by French architect Jean-Pierre Houdin how the pyramid was built.
posted by stbalbach at 9:17 AM PST - 5 comments

BusinessWeek on the Rapture Market

Times are tough, but one market is doing well: The Rapture. You've got your usual seeds and survival packs and first aid kits, but do you have your Rapture erotica for those long, lonely nights in the bunker? What about an iPhone app so you know when the Rapture occurs? How about informational and inspiring movies? And for those looking to break into the market, BusinessWeek gathers some helpful tips, such as "never give a date for your endtime prophecy."
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 8:50 AM PST - 35 comments

Youtube With No Tube

YouTube free Jazz will create randomized sound collages from YouTube videos based on a keyword search. Some examples: free jazz, soundcheck, laughing baby, parakeets, dog says i love you.
Links can sometimes take a few seconds to load, depending on the search term used. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 8:37 AM PST - 43 comments

The Indie Game Legend! and more free indies

The Indie Game Legend! Save the indie developers from an alien world full of vicious inhabitants in this meaty top down shooter. (via Pixel Prospector. You might have heard of PP when he made the video compilation 235 Free Indie Games in 10 minutes. He's followed it up with 75 Free Indie Games in 5 minutes and 93 Free Arena Shooters in 10 minutes.)
posted by The Devil Tesla at 8:18 AM PST - 6 comments

Frank Bender and the "team of experts whose consultative skills and talents are always free"

When forensic sculptor Frank Bender, Esquire's Man of the Month in April 2004, died this week the world mourned one of the foremost skull-to-face recreationists. What fewer people knew was that his passing created an opening in The Vidocq Society a members-only crime-solving organization he co-founded in 1990, dedicated to working on long-unsolved murders. Membership is limited to 82 members, one for each year of Inspector Vidocq's life. The organization does have a newsletter available online and guests and associates sometimes tag along to their monthly luncheons, Cuisine & Crime Solving.
posted by jessamyn at 7:13 AM PST - 18 comments

July 30


Powerglove, a speed metal / 'tv show and video game' band, has released an official video to their cover of the Danny Elfman theme from Batman.

Their other covers include: X-Men, The Animated Series (see it mixed to the intro) / Transformers / Flintstones / Simpsons / Inspector Gadget / Power Rangers / Pokemon: Gotta Catch Them All (Live) / The Real Adventures of Johnny Quest / Nightmare before Christmas: This is Halloween / Mario Minor / Legend of Zelda: Power, Wisdom, Courage / Metal Kombat for the Mortal Man / Heffalumps and Woozles and: Tetris (Live) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 9:23 PM PST - 36 comments

The unseen Ghent Altarpiece

Using infrared reflectography, conservators at the Getty Museum have produced an infrared reflectogram of what lies beneath Jan Van Eyck's Ghent Altarpiece. In the site's current phase, you can see hi-res images of the altarpiece both opened and closed, and can compare two images at once. The Met offers further information about the altarpiece, while the National Gallery explains a smaller-scale project devoted to Jan van Eyck's portrait of his wife.
posted by thomas j wise at 8:25 PM PST - 11 comments

Off to Grandmother's House We Go

"Hyper-minimalist poster designs of the classic children’s stories we’ve grown to know and love." [more inside]
posted by deborah at 7:10 PM PST - 66 comments

Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha

Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha: An Unusually Hardcore Dharma Book (pdf, html)
posted by MetaMonkey at 6:03 PM PST - 70 comments

But I'm Not A Rapper...

Rap Battle Parody Had to post this when I saw it. Taking shots at rap battles nowadays always provides quality entertainment. While you're at it check out the setup for Round 2, and check out Tyler, the Creator and his Odd Future counterpart participate in their own "rap battle".
posted by dapperkoala at 3:51 PM PST - 10 comments

Yes! We Have No Sustainable Fisheries!

The EU is to (finally) reform the Common Fisheries Policy [NYT] (BBC Q&A). As fishsubsidy.org note, the industry is currently subsidised by over €1bn a year, and the new policy fails to allow for a large change in fleet size. If you're looking for ways to help on a personal level, mefi's own Zarkonnen has produced a guide to what seafood is safe to ethically eat that I've found useful. [via mefi projects]
posted by jaduncan at 2:56 PM PST - 27 comments

Lisa Sauermann is the world's best high school math competitor

Lisa Sauermann of Germany has won her fourth gold medal at the International Mathematical Olympiad, making her the top performer in the high school math competition's history. The IMO has been has been run continuously since 1959. Sauermann scored a perfect 42 on this year's exam, the only contestant in the world to do so. Not impressed yet? Here are this year's problems: day 1 and day 2. Watch a bunch of mathematicians wrestle with problem 2 in real time at the polymath blog.
posted by escabeche at 1:35 PM PST - 64 comments

Africa in India

The African Presence in India: A Photo Essay : The questions we pose here are simply these: Who are the African people of India? What is their significance in the annals of history? Precisely what have they done and what are they doing now? These are extremely serious questions that warrant serious and fundamental answers. This series of articles, "The African Presence in India: An Historical Overview," is designed to provide some of those answers.
posted by infini at 11:58 AM PST - 14 comments

Walking the Ganges

The Age of Dissolution. "Walking the Ganga river, from holy bacterial stews to crystalline glaciers: Shiva, eclipses, and the IPCC." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 11:20 AM PST - 4 comments

Musical Melting Pot

2 Tone was both a British music genre and a record label where black met white; fired by the great Thatcher divide.
The Two Tone story I; II; III; IV; V;
More Music inside: - [more inside]
posted by adamvasco at 10:59 AM PST - 58 comments

Map Kaleidoscope

Rorschmap slices and reflects images from Google Maps, creating kaleidoscopic cartography. [more inside]
posted by zamboni at 10:37 AM PST - 19 comments

Turning writers into rock stars

"You never hear, “Famous author Neil Gaiman caught with seven stewardesses in a Wichita bus depot.” Chuck Wendig says, "We need literary rock star heroes to swoop in and save publishing." Well, perhaps... But can you picture this? "The authorial world demands this. And we’re not talking about some little Twitter snit, some online battle oozing across a handful of Livejournal comments. It’s not enough for Stephen King to talk to Entertainment Weekly and be all like, “Well, Stephenie Meyer is no J.K. Rowling, pfft.” I’m talking, Terry Pratchett needs to go and take a shit in Dan Brown’s mailbox."
posted by jenfullmoon at 8:55 AM PST - 140 comments

The bright future of solar powered factories

Most of the talk about renewable energy is aimed at electricity production. However, most of the energy we need is heat, which solar panels and wind turbines cannot produce efficiently. To power industrial processes like the making of chemicals, the smelting of metals or the production of microchips, we need a renewable source of thermal energy. Direct use of solar energy can be the solution, and it creates the possibility to produce renewable energy plants using only renewable energy plants, paving the way for a truly sustainable industrial civilization. [more inside]
posted by Bangaioh at 7:24 AM PST - 31 comments

Well, Will Wheaton invented the Sci Five...

Who invented the high five?
posted by garlic at 6:55 AM PST - 55 comments

The Mystery of the Erdställe

There are more than 700 curious tunnel networks in Bavaria, but their purpose remains a mystery. Were they built as graves for the souls of the dead, as ritual spaces or as hideaways from marauding bandits? Archeologists are now exploring the subterranean vaults to unravel their secrets. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 6:30 AM PST - 20 comments

Mission Accepted.....Mission Complete.

Gundam Navi: [Via: Comics Alliance] "If you're a Japanese otaku growing bored of your crippling iPhone GPS dependence, Namco Bandai could have the solution for you -- gaming your way to destinations with Mobile Suit Gundam. Gundam Navi, the first of a line of Character Navi programs, is a new GPS app that transforms a user's commute into "battle events" that pit a location marker against randomly generated enemies lined up on a given route." Gundam Navi is available for iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS. The app costs ¥3,500 for one year of usage. [Screenshot 1] [Screenshot 2] [Screenshot 3] [Screenshot 4] [Screenshot 5]
posted by Fizz at 6:13 AM PST - 28 comments

♫I'm especially good at expeeeccctorating♫ (my, what a guy, that Gaston)

Help the Hero! - Be the best manservant you can be!
posted by lemuring at 6:03 AM PST - 13 comments

All it needs is a matching pair of pumps

Vimeo user Charlie Bucket has created a "Fluid Dress" made from 600 feet of plastic tubing, throughout which courses a controlled mixture of air and fluorescent liquid. The result is quite fascinating (SLVimeo)
posted by ShutterBun at 5:14 AM PST - 31 comments

July 29

Browser choice and IQ

Aptiquant (PDF) has correlated browser choices with IQ scores for online IQ tests and found that IE users in 2011 score well under average. IE6 users had an average IQ of 82. Opera users rated 124.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 11:17 PM PST - 78 comments

No! I am not Luke Skywalker, nor was meant to be

The Lovesong of Admiral Piett Let us go then, you and I, When the star destroyers are spread out across the sky Like a smuggler frozen, cased in carbonite.
posted by Violet Hour at 7:56 PM PST - 57 comments

The Great Picture

Southern California Public Radio Reports (article [audio and video available inline]): Five years ago, a team of photographers created the world’s largest photograph by converting an Orange County jet hanger into a giant [pinhole] camera. The 30-by-111 foot image — called “The Great Picture” — is now on public view [at the Culver Center of the Arts] for only the second time in the U.S. Displaying the giant snapshot can be a monumental challenge. Making it was a lot harder (slyt). [more inside]
posted by troll at 6:21 PM PST - 9 comments

OK Go Dance

OK Go + Pilobolus = All Is Not Lost [more inside]
posted by EvaDestruction at 6:01 PM PST - 33 comments

Si qui futuere voluit Atticen, quaerat a(ssibus) XVI.

The Lost City of Pompeii : A snapshot of ancient Roman life via the ruins of Pompeii. Some decor NSFW.
posted by sonika at 1:51 PM PST - 47 comments

The Brute vs. How We Present Ourselves

Before and after shots of joggers.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:39 PM PST - 160 comments

Who's a good boy? Is it you? IS IT YOU?

Here are some photos of dogs shaking off water, and here are some dogs that are having a great time running, and here are some more, and here are some awesome dogs doing some awesome jumps, and here are some dogs all dressed up in wacky costumes, and here are some plain-old handsome dogs posing for the camera.
posted by jbickers at 12:17 PM PST - 62 comments

We're good, right? We're good?

25 years in and I had nothing. I was sitting alone in my garage in a house I was about to lose because of that bitch -- lets not get into that now -- and I realized. Fuck, you can build a clown, and they might not come. I was thinking, "It’s over. It’s fucking over."
Marc Maron, consummate comedy insider enjoying a career resurgence as a consummate comedy outsider, delivers the keynote address at the 2011 Just For Laughs Comedy Conference. [more inside]
posted by Pants McCracky at 12:09 PM PST - 41 comments


Mortys. (Vimeo) A short, animated film in French with English subtitles. Also on YouTube and DailyMotion [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:38 AM PST - 6 comments

If Adult TV Shows Were Remade for Children

If Adult TV Shows Were Remade for Children. Illustrations by Caldwell Tanner and Andrew Bridgman.
posted by morganannie at 11:34 AM PST - 18 comments

The goddamn Batma'am is tired of your crap

The Gender Bent Justice League descended on Comic-Con this year, complete with Superma'am, Wonder Man and the Martian Maneater. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 11:17 AM PST - 73 comments

Forty Fords

To celebrate Harrison Ford's 40th credited big-screen appearance in Cowboys & Aliens this weekend, Steve Murray takes a look back at everyone's favourite acting chameleon.
posted by sweetkid at 10:43 AM PST - 91 comments

The work of art in the age of digital reproduction

Dead End Thrills uses various cheats and texture packs to make beautiful screenshots. The creation of Duncan Harris, Dead End Thrills uses the techniques of photography - lighting and positioning - and an array of cheats to remove HUDs, arrange elements and polish resolutions to create gorgeous images from video games. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 10:42 AM PST - 19 comments

But your fog, it really moves!

San Francisco's fog rolling in (SLVimeo).
posted by spitefulcrow at 10:41 AM PST - 47 comments

Reality As Failed State

Reality As Failed State via Bruce Sterling [more inside]
posted by artlung at 10:27 AM PST - 38 comments

I can just hear it Flickr galleries

I can just hear it... (slightly nsfw). Very interesting and evocative Flickr galleries of vintage photographs of musicians, curated by MeFite, flapjax at midnite. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 10:25 AM PST - 10 comments

Worst. Congress. Ever.

Worst. Congress. Ever. "With the debt ceiling impasse and legislative gridlock sucking all the air out of Washington, Foreign Policy asked the experts: Is this really the worst Congress ever?"
posted by homunculus at 10:15 AM PST - 83 comments

What comes after one? Usually four.

A corpus analysis of rock harmony [PDF] - The analyses were encoded using a recursive notation, similar to a context-free grammar, allowing repeating sections to be encoded succinctly. The aggregate data was then subjected to a variety of statistical analyses. We examined the frequency of different chords and chord transitions ... Other results concern the frequency of different root motions, patterns of co-occurrence between chords, and changes in harmonic practice across time. More information, analysis, and explanation here.
posted by Wolfdog at 10:09 AM PST - 33 comments

We have dolls that pee, don't we?

Meet Bebe Gloton, the Breastfeeding Doll who's coming to America. The NY Times opines, Facebook users can't agree on whether it's good or bad, but what does God think?
posted by swingbraid at 9:52 AM PST - 40 comments

a nose for music

Zany Germans have crazy nose flute fun! But, wait! Surprising and unexpected beauty can be coaxed from the nose flute as well. And straight outta Vancouver, the nose flute man will happily show you how it's done. Unfortunately, I've found that pretty much everything else on the internet featuring this particular type of nose flute is, well... pretty awful. YMMV.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 9:28 AM PST - 16 comments

Dry cleaning

What actually happens to your clothes after you give them to the dry cleaner?
posted by John Cohen at 8:55 AM PST - 83 comments

The Chessboard Killer

Russia had never seen anything quite like the prolific serial killer Alexander Pichushkin, for whom “life without killing is like life without food.” In the end, the Maniac was what his mother and Suprunenko say he was: ordinary. He didn’t have strong opinions. He lacked preferences or ideas about other people, God, art, beauty. He could talk about these things, and did, but these were simply words in the service of killing; they were bits of theater; they were nothing. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 8:49 AM PST - 35 comments

Find a place to trash.

When EJ was called out of town for work, she decided to use couchsurfing site AirBnB to rent her home out for the week. She took care to lock up her valuables (money, passport, iPod, grandmother's jewelry) in a closet. She came home to find her tenants had systematically looted & trashed the place. They got to the closet through a hole they made in the wall & even cut the tags off her pillows. AirBnB has made sympathetic statements but EJ remains devastated.
posted by scalefree at 8:42 AM PST - 128 comments

India Block Printing

India Block Printing
posted by OmieWise at 8:33 AM PST - 10 comments


Jupiter has lots. Mars has some, too, as does Neptune. Turns out Earth's got a trojan asteroid of its own. Meet 2010 TK7, the blue planet's new baby brother.
posted by Sys Rq at 7:11 AM PST - 49 comments

Those ubiquitous Tourmobiles in DC

If you have spent anytime at all on the National Mall in Washington DC, you have no doubt seen the Tourmobile trolleys shuttling tourists around to the major attractions surrounding the National Mall. Some are now questioning the 40+ year old monopoly that the operator has held on tourist transportation on the Mall, especially in light of the National Park Service's refusal to open up bidding, or even allow more economical or environmentally friendly services to compete.
posted by COD at 6:28 AM PST - 54 comments

"Got his nose in every colon..."

In a two minute-and-forty-two-second advertisment against advertising, Microsoft explains why you should use their product instead of that of their competitor [via]
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:45 AM PST - 135 comments

July 28

Super Gandhi-o Bros.

These days, any old fool can beat Super Mario Bros with a record-breaking number of points, or in the shortest amount of time. This guy managed beat the game with the lowest number of points possible. He ran the clock down to zero on each level, always landed at the bottom of the flagpole, collected no coins, killed just one goomba, and somehow managed not to die once during the entire process.
posted by schmod at 8:48 PM PST - 62 comments

Faster, Pussycat! Shred! Shred!

John Taylor playing "Flight of the Bumblebee" on electric guitar at 600 beats per minute
posted by Trurl at 7:13 PM PST - 96 comments

Her nose is sensitive and she has a tail.

This is an art called “Life is melodies.” Everybody plays their own life, and the lives are unique and fantastic. Nobody can be another person who has something which you don’t have. However, this thing applies to all of us, whoever we are. A Japanese ESL student writes odd, sometimes lovely, four sentence stories about the pictures her tutor sends her. She wants to be "Internet famous," even though she is anonymous. Don't we all?
posted by louche mustachio at 7:04 PM PST - 24 comments

When Patents Attack

When Patents Attack. The team at PRI's This American Life and NPR's Planet Money bring you an hour long look into the growing "Mafia War" around software patents. Diving into the corporate filings, patent acquisitions, and office locations of Nathan Myrhvold's Intellectual Ventures and it's shell companies, Laura Sydell and Alex Blumburg uncover a disturbing protection scheme which threatens to undermine the competitiveness of the US tech industry[pdf]. [more inside]
posted by Popular Ethics at 6:59 PM PST - 122 comments

We will sing of the vibrant nightly fervor of arsenals and shipyards blazing with violent electric moons.

Industrial Scars: The Art of Environmental Pollution is a serious of gorgeous, abstract photographs by J Henry Fair of polluted industrial landscapes.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:24 PM PST - 22 comments

Rei Harakami, 1970-2011

Rei Harakami , the Kyoto-based Japanese electronic musician from Hiroshima, passed away suddenly on July 27. He was 40 years old. [more inside]
posted by misozaki at 6:09 PM PST - 16 comments

It is 50/50: Either they do or they dont

Are We Alone In the Universe? New Analysis Says Maybe. In a new paper published on arXiv.org, astrophysicist David Spiegel at Princeton University and physicist Edwin Turner at the University of Tokyo argue...using a statistical method called Bayesian reasoning...that the life here on Earth could be common, or it could be extremely rare — there's no reason to prefer one conclusion over the other. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 5:49 PM PST - 108 comments

... and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has supposedly started holding closed door meetings on extending the FISA Amendment Act to again extend the NSA's domestic warrantless wiretapping program. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 5:38 PM PST - 37 comments

The Last Meals Project

The Last Meals Project Every prisoner waiting to be executed is granted a last meal. Prisoners waiting to die choose their last meal for different reasons. Here's a list of exonerated death-row prisoners.
posted by modelenoir at 4:39 PM PST - 43 comments

The 108 year-old mystery of 3,000 missing Steiff bears

It started with a little girl who had polio, who later became a seamstress and made clothing and little things, like little pin cushion elephants. They were popular, not as sewing accessories, but as children's toys. The elephants would be joined by a menagerie of stuffed animals, including tigers and pigs. Some animals were set on iron wheels, including bears. But it wasn't until US political cartoon featuring President Theodore Roosevelt refusing to shoot a small black bear in November 1902 that "teddy" bears became popular, first in 1902 in the United States, made and sold by Jewish Russian immigrants, Rose and Morris Michtom (who would ride the success of Teddy's Bear to form the Ideal Toy Company). Back in Germany, Margarete Steiff's array of toy animals expanded to include a jointed, plush bear, 55 cm tall: 55 PB (German Wikipedia page). Margarete's nephew, who came up with the design, took some samples to a German toy fair in the Spring of 1903, where there was no interest in the bears until a representative from a New York toy company saw the mobile bears and ordered 3,000. A new factory had to be built, and bears were made, most likely shipped across the ocean, but their fate is a mystery.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:13 PM PST - 25 comments


Evolution 2011, the largest fighting game tournament in the world, starts tomorrow. On its eve, a documentary chronicling one player's run last year, FOCUS, was released. [more inside]
posted by apathy0o0 at 2:41 PM PST - 30 comments

Recent innovation and optimism from Goldman Sachs

Reuters reports that Goldman Sachs is storing aluminum in several warehouses outside Detroit. Apparently not much aluminum is actually leaving the warehouses. This may help explain the recent spike in the price of - any guesses? - aluminum. [more inside]
posted by mark7570 at 1:43 PM PST - 155 comments


Beautiful Swear Words
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:37 PM PST - 54 comments

Chronology of ‘A Visit from the Goon Squad’

Straightening out nonlinear literature. C.B. James offers a chronology of Jennifer Egan’s A Visit from the Goon Squad (previously), rendered in org-chart-like family trees and tables. (Via)
posted by joeclark at 12:05 PM PST - 14 comments

Bay Area photo archives

Let's Go to the Morgue! features images dug up from the San Francisco Chronicle's basement photo archives. Peter Hartlaub got distracted from his parenting blog to find and caption vintage photos of Golden Gate BART and Other Failed Rapid Transit Dreams, Sexy time! Five decades of Bay Area bathing suits, Tourist season in San Francisco, Six decades of roller derby in the Bay Area, When arcades ruled the Bay Area and A journey back to your high school prom. [more inside]
posted by oneirodynia at 11:55 AM PST - 15 comments

A Billionaire Worth Rooting For?

As a teenager, Zhang Xin was a factory worker in the sweatshops of Hong Kong. She saved enough to fly to England and at 27, graduated with a Master’s Degree in Development Economics from Cambridge University. At 30, she and her husband started what is now Beijing's largest real estate developer. She is quite candid about China's challenges. Here Charlie Rose interviews the billionaire CEO of Soho China.
posted by beisny at 11:15 AM PST - 38 comments

UT Tower Shootings

Don Clinchy, with the Texas Archive of the Moving Image videos collection, goes back to August 1, 1966. [more inside]
posted by Ideefixe at 10:21 AM PST - 4 comments

Dr Fad... Dr Fad... Dr Fad...

In 1983, Ken Hakuta's mother in Japan sent him some toys in the mail for his kids. They were octopus shaped, and when you threw them against the wall they "walked" down the wall. Seeing some marketing potential, he bought the rights to the toys for $100,000, and the Wacky Wall Walker was born. It became a HUGE success after a slow start, being offered as a prize in Kellogg's cereals and even inspiring a Christmas special on NBC. Eventually they ended up (according to Hakuta) selling a over 240 million units! Sometime during this wildly successful period, Dr. Fad was born. Ken wanted to everybody to invent and create. From 1988 to 1994, the Dr Fad Show featured a Wall Walker-covered-sweater wearing Hakuta as "Dr Fad" in a kids' gameshow format, with contestants coming on and showing off their inventions, the winner being judged by an applause meter. The show also had a "Golden Gizmo" segment, honouring the great fads of the past - a young Rodney Mullen accepted the Golden Gizmo for skateboarding, while other "famous" folks responsible (or in some other way related to) the fads appeared to receive the award in other segments. [more inside]
posted by antifuse at 9:49 AM PST - 35 comments

"A Mock. A Mock. A Lie."

This Man was Hired to Depress Art This is the opinion of Will Blake my Proofs of this Opinion are given in the following Notes [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 9:29 AM PST - 16 comments

Europe on fifteen hundred yuan a day.

Evan Osnos joins a tour group from China as they traverse Europe. In the front row of the bus, Li stood facing the group with a microphone in hand, a posture he would retain for most of our waking hours in the days ahead. In the life of a Chinese tourist, guides play an especially prominent role—translator, raconteur, and field marshal—and Li projected a calm, seasoned air. He often referred to himself in the third person—Guide Li—and he prided himself on efficiency. “Everyone, our watches should be synchronized,” he said. “It is now 7:16 P.M.” He implored us to be five minutes early for every departure. “We flew all the way here,” he said. “Let’s make the most of it.” [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 8:38 AM PST - 71 comments

The Curious Case of the "Livre des Sauvages"

Circa 1850. A curious document that had been filed away in a box for over a century. Hundreds of pages of strange, crudely drawn figures, resembling stick figures, many of them appearing to be urinating, copulating, whipping each other, and displaying enormously swollen genitals. An extremely important document that revealed much that was previously unknown about Native American history and culture?? The scribbling book of a German child, "the leisure pencillings of a nasty-minded little boy"?? We may never know. [more inside]
posted by ecorrocio at 8:33 AM PST - 43 comments

Barack Hoover Obama or Barack Nixon Obama?

Barack Hoover Obama or Barack Nixon Obama?
posted by ennui.bz at 7:25 AM PST - 154 comments

"The City Is Not A Concrete Jungle. It's A Human Zoo"

The Corners Project. For three years, photographer Friko Starc took candid, spontaneous portraits of people who passed by one of five Manhattan street corners. Video [more inside]
posted by zarq at 7:19 AM PST - 12 comments

Rescuing Books From Obscurity

Sifting through The Staxx you'll find excerpts from ancient books about British chimneysweeps, ferns and mosses, Japanese art motifs, ornamental alphabets, and much more.
posted by hermitosis at 6:55 AM PST - 6 comments

Location, location, location.

If you have a spare $799,999, you can buy the town of Scenic, South Dakota. [more inside]
posted by flyingsquirrel at 6:53 AM PST - 96 comments

All the website you could ever need on one page.

The World's Worst Website Every web 1.0 mistake you can make when designing a website, including loud autolaunched bugles. Also the template for the Gruaniad's recent revamp of Comment is Free. Tweet this!
posted by joannemullen at 6:02 AM PST - 80 comments

July 27

My God! It's full of krchhhhhhhh... EEEE-errrr EEEE-errrrr... chhhhhhh...

The dial-up sound, 700% slower.
posted by katillathehun at 11:19 PM PST - 82 comments

Angry Jane Doe

Angry Jane Doe: "I have started to sleep around. I sleep with men I am not dating. I sleep with men and refuse to date them, actually. I come to their houses, fuck them, say thank you for a nice time, and don't let the door hit me on the ass on the way out. You might think this is a pretty good deal, but it is not. Because I fuck and tell. Because I'm pissed." (NSFW.) [more inside]
posted by velvet winter at 11:13 PM PST - 327 comments

Newscorp Blockers

MurdochAlert warns you whenever you visit one of the 100+ Murdoch Family-controlled websites. If you're not ready to block them all, MurdochAlert can warn you instead. Also it's handy for identifying news sources controlled by the Murdoch Family. Users of Chrome might try Murdoch Block.
posted by Ahab at 10:41 PM PST - 25 comments

"We will kill, burn, and destroy all Buddhists"

For 100 years, Buddhists and Muslims lived side by side in southern Thailand. In 2004, a small fraction of the Muslims started killing the Buddhists indiscriminately. This conflict is now the most violent in Asia, with murders of Thai civilians, including children, monks, and Muslims who refuse to cooperate, occurring on a daily basis. [more inside]
posted by shii at 9:19 PM PST - 52 comments

Klosterman Dissects Frankenstein

Chuck Klosterman breaks down Edgar Winter Group's 1973 Old Grey Whistle Test performance of Frankenstein. Unlike zzazazz's previous post, there is no bonus, because "Edgar Winter's finest nine minutes" is its own crazy good reward.
posted by davejay at 7:14 PM PST - 82 comments

Pierre Bonnard: The Intimiste

Pierre Bonnard died in 1947, after a lifetime of producing a great many intense and beautiful paintings, in keeping with his philosophy of domestic bliss, idealised and frozen in time if not realised in real life. A calm and intelligent man, he pursued his purpose doggedly and left behind an enduring legacy of visual joy. Surely as great an achievement as any painter could wish for. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:00 PM PST - 17 comments

Famine in East Africa

With East Africa facing its worst drought in 60 years, affecting more than 11 million people, the United Nations has declared a famine in the region for the first time in a generation. Alan Taylor's In Focus quickly brings home the scale of the suffering, with a link to the CNN article listing several ways to donate.
posted by bwg at 6:12 PM PST - 33 comments

A Profile in Courage

“You’re from The New York Times,” he said. “How can I be sure you’ll be objective and accurate?”
posted by Renoroc at 5:40 PM PST - 68 comments

Sex Columnist Dan Savage asks Rick Santorum to tone it down (NSFW)

Dan Savage has started a new campaign (NSFW) to prod Rick Santorum into avoiding attacks on gay people during his presidential campaign run. He has come up with a new definition for the name "Rick".
posted by dibblda at 5:12 PM PST - 91 comments

253, an early Internet novel

253 is a novel written for the Internet. Originally published in 1996, it is composed of 253 stories of 253 words about each of the 253 passengers on a London Underground train, headed for a crash.
posted by yellowbinder at 3:37 PM PST - 29 comments

The Medium Chill

"We now have a smallish house in a nondescript working class Seattle neighborhood with no sidewalks. We have one car, a battered old minivan with a large dent on one side where you have to bang it with your hip to make the door shut. Our boys go to public schools. Our jobs pay enough to support our lifestyle, mostly anyway. If we wanted, we could both do the "next thing" on our respective career paths..... Fact is, we just don't want to work that hard! We already work harder than we feel like working. We enjoy having time to lay around in the living room with the kids, reading. We like to watch a little TV after the kids are in bed. We like going to the park and visits with friends and low-key vacations and generally relaxing. Going further down our respective career paths would likely mean more work, greater responsibilities, higher stress, and less time to lay around the living room with the kids. So why do it?" David Roberts in Grist on satisficing, voluntary non-affluence, and the medium chill.
posted by escabeche at 2:10 PM PST - 174 comments

His feet are faster

Who is Tom Bombadil? [Via a more wide-ranging discussion on reddit.]
posted by a snickering nuthatch at 1:45 PM PST - 212 comments

Homosexuality explained

Homosexuality explained... [more inside]
posted by mudpuppie at 1:22 PM PST - 102 comments

Good luck, have fun.

Every spectator area was full with people. There were just so. many. people. Then someone started the wave. The wave. For me, that's the moment e-sports made it in the west. I was there. The second you do the fucking wave at a StarCraft match in NORTH AMERICA, e-sports has come to fruition.

- Reddit user Kevinflo recalls the StarCraft 2 match ups (1, 2 and 3) between MC and LosirA at this June’s MLG Columbus. [more inside]
posted by Loser at 12:32 PM PST - 95 comments

Educational and Informative Fun with Photography: the works of Prof. Andrew Davidhazy and others

Andrew Davidhazy is a professor in the School of Photographic Arts and Sciences at the Rochester Institute of Technology. He has been doing fantastic and creative things with photography for decades, presented in photography exhibits and articles in scholarly and popular magazines. He explains the rolling shutter effect (previously) and provides an introduction to panoramic, peripheral and scanning photography. From there, we get into an informal catalogue of slit-scan video artworks and research (previously), from this video clip (possibly NSFW, with moments of distorted nudity) from The Fourth Dimension by Zibigniew Rybczinski (prior work on MeFi). If you're looking for less mind-bending and more stunning, Prof. Davidhazy also works with high-speed photography.
posted by filthy light thief at 10:57 AM PST - 6 comments

20 to 1

In America, the typical black household had just $5,677 in wealth (assets minus debts) in 2009, the typical Hispanic household had $6,325 in wealth and the typical white household had $113,149. These lopsided wealth ratios are the largest since the government began publishing such data a quarter century ago. Data from the US Census: Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP).
posted by cashman at 10:25 AM PST - 165 comments

The Teen Suicide Epidemic in Michele Bachmann's District

The Teen Suicide Epidemic in Michele Bachmann's District. Minnesota's largest school district, Anoka-Hennepin, has been declared a "suicide contagion area" due to its teen suicide rate. Some point blame at the aggressive anti-gay tactics of Michele Bachmann's allies in the district (coincidentally, Bachmann's husband is an uncertified therapist who runs a clinic offering "reparative therapy" and calls gay people "barbarians" who need to be "disciplined," as previously discussed on MetaFilter). [via]
posted by infinitywaltz at 10:07 AM PST - 148 comments

The Worst call in the history of baseball

Nineteen innings. Nearly seven hours of play. The "Worst call in the history of baseball" ends Pirates/Braves game. [more inside]
posted by misha at 9:05 AM PST - 157 comments

“I didn’t think anything was wrong, I never saw her anyway.”

"The call to the Sheriff's Office came on Nov. 18, 2010, just before noon. The townhouse, deputies learned, had belonged to a woman named Kathryn Norris, and the 1987 silver Chevy Nova was registered to her, too. She had used a normal amount of electricity in July 2009 and much less in August and none after that. She had paid her mortgage in August and then stopped. Her head was on the floor and her feet were on the seat. The corpse, deputies wrote in their report, was wearing a dress."
posted by Chrysostom at 8:54 AM PST - 79 comments

Traffic Drives Nigerians Nuts, but a Trip to a Shrink May Go Too Far

People often think that other drivers are nuts. The Nigerian authorities have taken things a step further, now requiring drivers accused of going the wrong way down a one way street to get psychiatric exams.
posted by reenum at 8:32 AM PST - 22 comments

That all-important "■"

I do not enjoy Facebook - I find it cloying and impossible - but I am there every day. Paul Ford writes about social media, the ceaseless flow of time, and narratives - or, "Facebook and the Epiphanator".
posted by WalterMitty at 8:17 AM PST - 53 comments

Bisphenol A does not pose a hazard to humans

A new study1 suggests that BPA is not the health hazard that it has previously been thought to be. [more inside]
posted by alby at 8:05 AM PST - 60 comments

Dietary restrictions reframed as sensory surrogates

Doppelgänger Dinners. That was the seed of an idea that grew into our most recent dinner: a 7 course meal with an omnivore and vegetarian option where each corresponding course looked identical across the meat/vegetable line. [...] We also wanted to challenge ourselves by not simply creating a bunch of meat dishes and substituting each meat with tofu or some other protein stand-in. So no repeating of ingredients: if we used basil puree in the veggie dish, then we had to use parsley puree in the meat dish. Studiofeast commits culinary counterfeiting. [via]
posted by shakespeherian at 8:01 AM PST - 25 comments

NHK looks at Fukushima

On July 9, the Japanese public broadcaster NHK aired a documentary on the earliest days of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear crisis. There appears to be precisely one place on the internet where it can currently be viewed: here.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:50 AM PST - 44 comments

Marvin the Paranoid Android wandering Hackney Marshes

The writer Iain Sinclair has been a fierce critic of London's 2012 Olympics project for some time. Now, with under a year until the games begin, his determined condemnations have again made the news. But, one architect wonders, is all he is offering just "the urban hipster version of shabby chic"?
posted by hydatius at 6:38 AM PST - 14 comments

She said that I was good

The Oakland-based Purple Silk Music Education program is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing musical training to inner-city youth. One particular student in the program, Tyler Thompson, has been getting some press lately for his renditions of traditional Chinese opera (Vimeo link). (Chinese opera, previously on the blue)
posted by Philosopher Dirtbike at 2:25 AM PST - 17 comments

July 26

Surreal J-pop video

PonPonPon (earworm alert) from Kyary Pamyu Pamyu. [via]
posted by unliteral at 10:48 PM PST - 57 comments

"Somewhere in there there are the lost texts from all sorts of authors."

Ancient Lives is a project by the University of Oxford which asks your help in transcribing fragments from the Oxyrhynchus Papyri Collection using the Zooniverse model. Leader of the project, Chris Lintott, explains the project here in a short interview. Can you help him find his one-eyed astrologer? [Oxyrhynchus previously]
posted by Kattullus at 9:31 PM PST - 39 comments

Empire of Evolution

Evolution Right Under Our Noses. "A small but growing number of field biologists study urban evolution — the biological changes that cities bring to the wildlife that inhabits them." [Via]
posted by homunculus at 8:54 PM PST - 41 comments

To help thousands of people in over 200 countries diagnose, treat and prevent common illnesses

Hesperian is a non-profit publisher of books and newsletters for community-based health care, mostly aimed at the third world. Their first book, Where There Is No Doctor, A Village Health Handbook, has been translated into 88 languages and is one of the most widely used training and work manuals for community health care in the world. They have now made 20 of their publications available for free download, many of which can now also be browsed online through their website using an "Ebrary" in-browser interface. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:25 PM PST - 15 comments

Somebody get His Majesty a lager

Did a case of 15th C. royal adultery mean that every King and Queen of England since Henry VI to sit on the throne was not the legitimate heir according to the rules of royal succession? And if the Tudors, Stuarts, Hanoverians, and Saxe-Coburg von Gothas Windsor-Mountbattens are not properly the ones to be occupying the positions they have/are, who is Britain's Real Monarch? [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 8:02 PM PST - 107 comments

"getting attention is easy, being a feminist is hard"

SlutWalk Toronto (featured on the Blue) has come and gone and spawned imitators. Already though, some feminists are questioning it's efficacy and impact on both men and women.
posted by mikoroshi at 7:19 PM PST - 233 comments

Massimals, like massing models, animal massing models.

Jason Scroggin and Akari Takebeyashi teach in the Architecture faculty at the University of Kentucky College of Design. Together they also form Design Office Takebayashi Scroggin [D.O.T.S.] Recently they took the idea of an architectural massing model* to the world of animals. Here is a petting zoo of "Massimals" made with ziplock ties, polystyrene foam, chipboard and foam core. [more inside]
posted by honey-barbara at 7:07 PM PST - 4 comments

Diseased Cottonwoods live on as sculpture

bringing some beauty to the sad loss of trees with a chainsaw competition Some pretty cool detail and creativity to be had from such a crude tool. I wouldn't be suprised to find the prize money to be a savings from the cost of having the trees cut down and hauled off, too.... [more inside]
posted by Redhush at 6:37 PM PST - 22 comments

Bidder #70

Lauded as a civil disobedience symbol agitating for urgent reaction to climate change, Timothy DeChristopher was sentenced Tuesday to two years in federal prison. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 6:24 PM PST - 49 comments

"The fingers you have used to TYPE are too fat. To obtain a special TYPING wand, please mash the keypad with your palm now."

IBM is working on a keyboard design that will adapt to a user’s finger anatomy. Touchscreen keyboard morphs to fit your typing style. [Fig. 2] Via: [Wired] Morphing Touchscreen Keyboard Interface (PDF) [Pat2PDF/IBM]
posted by Fizz at 5:18 PM PST - 20 comments

No First Amendment Right to Bark at a Police Dog

An Ohio trial court judge last Friday in State v. Stephens [.pdf] held that there is no First Amendment right to bark at a police dog. [more inside]
posted by T.D. Strange at 5:08 PM PST - 35 comments

Pathé News

The British Pathé Archive: The British Pathé archive is a collection of over 90,000 clips from Pathé newsreels and cinemagazines, which were shown in British cinemas from 1910 until 1970. They were also shown in the US, under licence to Fox. Typically accompanied by jaunty music, and narrated by a man with an oft-parodied conservative RP accent, the archive covers many of the momentous events of the 20th Century. It also contains the trivial.
posted by HastyDave at 4:24 PM PST - 10 comments

Farmer Arepo Turns His Wheel

posted by Iridic at 2:35 PM PST - 102 comments

High-speed Collaboration.

Long Shot Magazine is putting together another issue in 48 hours. After the composition and release of their first two issues, Long Shot—a collection of fiction, non-fiction, photography, poetry, and other art—is preparing for a third issue following a resolved conflict with NBC over their former name: 48 Hours. [more inside]
posted by mean cheez at 1:30 PM PST - 16 comments

The village that re-emerged

AFP photographer Juan Mabromata recently visited the ruins of Villa Epecuén in Argentina, a small touristic village that started slowly re-surfacing after the rising waters of the nearby lake left it completely underwater nearly 26 years ago. [more inside]
posted by palbo at 1:18 PM PST - 16 comments

I Feel Old

Stereogum's Stroked is a ten-year anniversary celebration of The Strokes debut album Is This It, featuring Owen Pallet, Peter Bjion and John, and more. [more inside]
posted by hughbot at 12:46 PM PST - 54 comments

Binary Agreement Model

Social consensus through the influence of committed minorities: We show how the prevailing majority opinion in a population can be rapidly reversed by a small fraction p of randomly distributed committed agents who consistently proselytize the opposing opinion and are immune to influence. Specifically, we show that when the committed fraction grows beyond a critical value pc ≈ 10%, there is a dramatic decrease in the time, Tc, taken for the entire population to adopt the committed opinion. [.pdf] [more inside]
posted by troll at 12:28 PM PST - 55 comments

Voting in Wisconsin Just Became A Lot More Difficult

After creating legislation that requires voter ID in order to vote, Wisconsin Governer proposes closing 10 DMV Offices. Requiring voter ID puts a disproportionate burden on elderly, low income and disabled voters who may not be able to wait in long DMV lines. The new Wisconsin laws are expected to potentially disenfranchise millions of voters across the state. [more inside]
posted by Poet_Lariat at 11:41 AM PST - 296 comments

Worldwide respect. Awe. A healthy fear.

A Simple Plan to Fix the American Political System Using Common Sense and a Little Dinosaur DNA by Tim Siedell.
posted by blue_beetle at 11:19 AM PST - 17 comments

Nirvana's Nevermind: 20 year later, covered by friends and fans

Nirvana's second studio album, Nevermind, turns 20 this September and Spin Magazine has put together a collection of covers. The covers span a lot of ground, from Meat Puppets (of who Nirvana were big fans) to Amanda Palmer, and newer acts including Jesica Lea Mayfield and Telekinesis, plus Charles Bradely & The Menahn Street Band, a surprise funk track by 62-year-old "soul shouter." Read more and download the album from Spin (link sent to an email address), or listen to them on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:33 AM PST - 169 comments

Headless Corpses, Stolen Laptops, and Lawyer-shaped Guns.

What has Richard Buckner been up to, since 2006's Meadow? [more inside]
posted by dubold at 9:18 AM PST - 31 comments

Apple Battery Hack

How a Security Researcher Discovered the Apple Battery ‘Hack’ - How to destroy Hardware with Software.
posted by MechEng at 9:14 AM PST - 50 comments

Is this unidentified man Ray Gricar?

On April 15, 2005, Centre County Pennsylvania District Attorney Ray Gricar disappeared under mysterious circumstances. A little over six years later, he was declared legally dead. In early July, 2011, a mysterious man was arrested in Provo City, Utah and refused to give his name, baffling police. One day after he was declared dead, people are asking could Utah's John Doe prisoner be Ray Gricar?
posted by MegoSteve at 8:37 AM PST - 64 comments

The Atlantic: Fiction 2011

The Atlantic has posted its Fiction 2011 issue online. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 7:54 AM PST - 32 comments

Listen. The last man who said that to me was Archie Leach just a week before he cut his throat.

His Girl Friday - Between the Lines Edit is all of Howard Hawks's 1940 screwball comedy His Girl Friday that remains if you remove the dialogue. Created by Valentin Spirik.
posted by shakespeherian at 7:36 AM PST - 67 comments

God's Own Warden

Burl Cain, the warden of Angola, Louisiana's largest prison, uses religion to control and subdue the prison population.
posted by reenum at 7:29 AM PST - 47 comments

The Fallacy of Sprites

Learning from Doom: Latvian artist Viktor Timofeev explores the "digital ruin" of the classic 1993 shooter DOOM, taking dozens of annotated snapshots along the way. It might be the only time you'll see 16th-century Mannerism, El Lissitzky, and Arachnotrons mentioned in the same place.
posted by theodolite at 7:03 AM PST - 50 comments

Elizabeth Parker's Confession

Stitches From the Soul: Elizabeth Parker's Confession. Elizabeth Parker's cross-stitch sampler reveals the story of a young woman, who when employed as a housemaid for a cruel employer, was thrown down the stairs when she spurned his sexual advances. She later attempted suicide: "I acknowledge being guilty of that great sin of self-destruction." Her story is meticulously recorded in the circa 1830 sampler, part of the sampler collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum.
posted by marxchivist at 6:35 AM PST - 22 comments

But Beowulf fought on

Each of us must face the monster down: Children's author Michael Morpurgo reads his essay for the Norwegian people.
posted by Mooseli at 6:17 AM PST - 24 comments

Movable Type is kerning to a town near you!

These days, the term Movable Type is more likely to make people think of a blogging platform than anything involving paper, but it used to refer to the letters, words, and graphics typically cast in an alloy of lead, tin and antimony or carved from wood, that could be rearranged by a letterpress printer for each individual job. In an environment where toner serves most of our current printing needs, the endangered art of letterpress printing now has a roving champion. Her name is Kyle Durrie, and she is the proprietor of Power and Light Press in Portland, Oregon. Back in March she bought herself a 1982 Chevy step van, gutted it, and then installed a work area and a couple of printing presses in the back. She stocked it with a variety of type and ornaments and she is now driving it all over the U.S. teaching folks about the joys of printing with pressure. Maybe if you ask nicely, she'll stop by your neighborhood and show you how to print, just like Bi Sheng first did over a thousand years ago.
posted by Toekneesan at 6:12 AM PST - 12 comments

Riffing on riffing

"I was unaware, in my awe of adults playing folk songs, that they would push me into a different world altogether, a world in which only some would ultimately be deemed worthy to publicly perform music: those who were ‘musically talented’. And that talent was determined by one’s ability to imitate, precisely, music written by others." How I Learned To Play Guitar
posted by mippy at 3:09 AM PST - 48 comments

I pee-peed in your glove and soon it start to smell

Russian UnicornMichael Bublé   and   Everybody Poops —Black Eyed Peas
posted by jeffburdges at 12:47 AM PST - 17 comments

July 25

Cheryl’s mind turned like the vanes of a wind-powered turbine, chopping her sparrow-like thoughts into bloody pieces that fell onto a growing pile of forgotten memories.

The winners of the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest have been announced for 2011. The contest challenges entrants to compose bad opening sentences to imaginary novels.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 11:30 PM PST - 45 comments

From AC/DC to Zyklon

Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present, the long-awaited Periödic Table of Heavy Meẗals. [more inside]
posted by Minus215Cee at 9:38 PM PST - 47 comments

Hidden persuasions

Subliminal Sex Messages and Pornography in Advertising and Cartoons (SLYT-SFW)
posted by Brian B. at 8:06 PM PST - 105 comments

Dancers to a discordant system

Here are two videos of drummer Stan Bicknell playing drums: Mars Volta Medley; Meshuggah Medley.
posted by mhjb at 7:14 PM PST - 39 comments

The Joy of Dullness

The Joy of Dullness 1 | The Joy of Dullness 2: a gallery of dull, curious or odd book covers on informative and explore-worthy Bookride. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye at 6:21 PM PST - 18 comments

Kids Today

First we started with planking, then owling, and then it go so hot we just dove in. We're all familiar with planking. (Some tragically so.) An obvious exponent would be owling (even by celebrities! and more celebrities!) Now we're leisure diving.
posted by kinsey at 6:20 PM PST - 102 comments

How do you give a game a voice? You give it a voice.

Last week saw the first release of this year's Summer of Arcade, Bastion (Trailer 1, Trailer 2). Reactions have generally been very positive, including from the venerable Tom Chick and Kill Screen. Drawing praise are the art, writing (by game critic turned developer Greg Kasavin) and music (unofficial playlist, somewhat spoilery). But most noted has been the dynamic narration that permeates the game. [more inside]
posted by kmz at 5:36 PM PST - 43 comments

Irish stew. Papal hide the pickle.

Irish PM condemns Vatican interference in sex abuse cases. Enda Kenny, the new Taoiseach of Ireland, has scathingly criticized the Vatican, citing the Cloyne Report and a recently-leaked Vatican letter intended to prevent sex abuse cases from going public, despite their public policy of reporting all abuse claims to the authorities. (Similar claims of the Vatican not reporting recent child abuse cases have also been made in the US.) Ireland's Minister for Justice has cited an extensive list of The Church's failures to comply with their policies, and is supporting legislation to make it a crime not to report child abuse claims. The Vatican's envoy was asked to report to Parliament and explain The Church's position on this matter quickly, with the implied threat that they might be forced to testify. Today, the Church, citing "surprise and disappointment at certain excessive reactions" has recalled their envoy. "(This) should be interpreted as an expression of the desire of the Holy See for serious and effective collaboration with the (Irish) Government."
posted by markkraft at 4:56 PM PST - 297 comments

Warning: Low-brow Music Ahead

Muzak filter: Ernesto Cortazar (1940–2004) was a composer and pianist who was born in Mexico City. According to his wiki page (which reads like it was written by a friend), he composed background music for more than 500 motion pictures. His music is the type you receive in inspirational emails full of kittens & sunsets. So, it is suitable only as background wall of music for those willing to forgo their cultured sophistication. The only time he was mentioned on the blue, was on a pre-Askme Q&A from 2001 about ‘Cool Christmas Songs
posted by growabrain at 3:50 PM PST - 4 comments

flux capacitor or not..

Sorry Marty.. but 2.21 gigawatts ain't gonna cut it. Scientists have proven nothing can travel faster than the speed of light, so no time travelling for you, bub. A new study published in the American Physical Society's Physical Review Letters journal concludes that even single photons have to obey the posted speed limits. [more inside]
posted by analogue at 3:17 PM PST - 139 comments

Murray Hall of Tammany

A fixture in NYC's Tammany Hall for 25 years, Murray Hall kept a secret. Murray Hall was buried in women's clothes (PDF), and the masquerade he carried out led to a proposed rule that politicians wear whiskers so that women (who did not yet have the right to vote) could not surreptitiously cast a ballot.
posted by mudpuppie at 3:15 PM PST - 21 comments

The Carter Family Project

The Carter Family Project [via mefi projects] To quote the original post: "We're recording every single song the Carter Family ever cut. In order. One per day. In one or two takes. And we've got some real good guest stars, too."
posted by Paul Slade at 2:58 PM PST - 14 comments

Who Knew?

Apparently, alligators like marshmallows. [via]
posted by quin at 2:58 PM PST - 44 comments

The abridged career of Stewart Lee, 1991-2031

"I play a CD of a long Evan Parker sax solo while they [enter the theatre]. I figure if people can’t put up with that then they will probably not be able to put up with me." Quoth Benito Strauss, in the context of the Daily Mail's crusade against cruelty to millonaire stand-up Michael McIntyre: Yeah, I'd love it if someone would do a post on Stewart Lee. So: [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 2:57 PM PST - 28 comments

I knew I should have taken that off after 25 mintues.

SheBop, a "female friendly sex toy boutique," in Portland, Ore., has a great blog where they post comprehensive guides, among other things, on less-often addressed sex and sex-toy issues like the sex toy cleaning guide, Lube 101, how to use a cock ring, and the lowdown on Kegel exercises. Probably NSFW.
posted by Lutoslawski at 1:47 PM PST - 28 comments

Orange you glad you got your Nickelodeon?

Two and a half years ago, we explored the early history of Cartoon Network... but it wasn't the only player in the youth television game. As a matter of fact, Fred Seibert -- the man responsible for the most inventive projects discussed in that post -- first stretched his creative legs at the network's truly venerable forerunner: Nickelodeon. Founded as Pinwheel, a six-hour block on Warner Cable's innovative QUBE system, this humble channel struggled for years before Seibert's innovative branding work transformed it into a national icon and capstone of a media empire. Much has changed since then, from the mascots and game shows to the versatile orange "splat." But starting tonight in response to popular demand, the network is looking back with a summer programming block dedicated to the greatest hits of the 1990s, including Hey Arnold!, Rocko's Modern Life, The Adventures of Pete & Pete, The Ren & Stimpy Show, Double Dare, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Legends of the Hidden Temple, and All That. To celebrate, look inside for the complete story of the early days of the network that incensed the religious right, brought doo-wop to television, and slimed a million fans -- the golden age of Nickelodeon. (warning: monster post inside) [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 1:33 PM PST - 114 comments

History Remixed.

MOMENTUS is an artistic collaboration to visualize and reinterpret defining moments in US history.
posted by mean cheez at 1:08 PM PST - 6 comments

Buried below Park Ave

New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority has just finished the initial drilling phase of the East Side Access project to bring the Long Island Railroad to Grand Central Terminal. What are they doing with the tunnel boring machine? Giving it a funeral. (NYTimes link, use this if you need to get past the paywall) Instead of removing the $8 million machine, the contractor responsible for this portion of the project has decided it will be cheaper to leave it in place at the end of the tunnel. This is not without precedent; some of the TBMs used for the Channel Tunnel were turned off the tunnel mainline and left buried.
posted by spitefulcrow at 12:40 PM PST - 44 comments

Flying High

GE has posted a searchable bird's-eye view of the 6,000 most popular airports in the world.
posted by gman at 12:39 PM PST - 19 comments

"I'm going to fight this cancer now, so I can be back to fight for families when Parliament resumes"

CanadaFilter: Jack Layton, Leader of the Official Opposition following the New Democrats historic electoral victory this spring, announces he will step aside temporarily after second cancer diagnosis. Nycole Turmel recommended as interim leader. [more inside]
posted by mazola at 12:31 PM PST - 27 comments

I'd Hit That

Should a Wash Post writer take one toke over the line to build trust to get the story? The Washington Post has a strict policy that its reporters not engage in anything illegal to get a story. Does that include taking a hit on a joint or pipe if it will get the subject of the story to open up? Not surprisingly, the reader poll had over 70% say, I'd hit that.
posted by AugustWest at 11:05 AM PST - 39 comments

Fingerprint scanner to spot the living dead

Zombie proof your doors IF AN invading zombie army is staggering towards your front door, don't worry: a fingerprint-activated door lock could save your bacon. That's because one group of researchers has worked out how a biometric scanner can keep the undead at bay. Fingerprint scanner to spot the living dead In NewScientist 25 July 2011 by Paul Marks
posted by naight at 9:44 AM PST - 39 comments

Like Mystery Shoppers, but for God

Since 1998, Christian Humor Magazine Ship of Fools has been sending Mystery Worshippers to churches to write reviews. [more inside]
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 9:30 AM PST - 30 comments

This prayer is sponsored by Goodyear Tires. Amen.

NASCAR pre-race, promotional prayer. SLYT
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 9:27 AM PST - 46 comments

Creationism stays out of Texas textbooks (for now)

On Friday, July 22, the Texas Board of Education voted 14-0 to support scientifically accurate high school biology textbook supplements, rejecting the proposed creationist materials. Instead of including such material, the education board voted to let Education Commissioner Robert Scott work with the publishing company Holt McDougal to find language that is factually correct and fits the standards adopted in 2009. "My goal would be to try to find some common ground," Scott said.
posted by filthy light thief at 9:08 AM PST - 55 comments

When I was a little kid, my mother told me not to stare into the sun, so when I was six I did.

Jason Padgett is the first person to acquire synasthesia and savantism by head trauma. Three years after his mugging, he began drawing complex geometries, including hand-drawn approximations of fractals, the first time anyone had ever done so. Eventually a mathematician suggested Padgett take a math course; with trigonometric notation Padgett offered a proof of his approximation of Pi. [more inside]
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 8:32 AM PST - 49 comments

Deindividuation and Polarization through Online Anonymity

The Guardian: Online commenting: How the internet created an age of rage
posted by zarq at 7:09 AM PST - 93 comments

NY parents to gay sons and daughters: when are you getting married?

"With same-sex marriage now legal in New York," the New York Times reports, "some gay sons and daughters are starting to feel the same heat from parents as do their straight siblings." As with so many things, The Onion saw this coming years ago.
posted by shivohum at 6:37 AM PST - 40 comments

Don't Drive Fast on the Storseisundbrua

Storseisundet Bridge, along Atlantic Road, the Atlanterhavsveien in Norway, is a mind-bending (at certain angles) cantilever structure guaranteed to thrill you.
posted by bwg at 6:06 AM PST - 14 comments

The War for Catch-22

"A difficult situation or problem whose seemingly alternative solutions are logically invalid." The tragicomic 1961 novel that sprang from Joseph Heller’s experience as a W.W. II bombardier mystified and offended many of the publishing professionals who saw it first. But thanks to a fledgling agent, Candida Donadio, and a young editor, Robert Gottlieb, it would eventually be recognized as one of the greatest anti-war books ever written. In an adaptation from his Heller biography, Tracy Daugherty recalls the tortured eight-year genesis of Catch-22 and its ultimate triumph. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 6:02 AM PST - 38 comments

ever wondered what the ad networks know about you?

Collusion is a firefox add-on that visualizes in real-time which data collection companies track you across different websites on the web and what they're learning about you. Atul Varma describes how this project came about. Safari meanwhile has ghostery, an extension that gives you a roll-call of the ad networks, behavioral data providers, web publishers, and other companies interested in your activity. [more inside]
posted by krautland at 5:57 AM PST - 14 comments

Janet Malcolm: The Art of Nonfiction

"I can’t imagine a nonfiction writer who wasn’t influenced by the fiction he or she had read. But the “thriller-like pacing” you find in my writing may come more from my own beat than from thrillers. I walk fast and am impatient. I get bored easily—no less with my own ideas than with those of others. Writing for me is a process of constantly throwing out stuff that doesn’t seem interesting enough. I grew up in a family of big interrupters." Janet Malcolm interviewed by Katie Roiphe in The Paris Review.
posted by escabeche at 5:54 AM PST - 6 comments

Exotic is a relative term.

Nisha Sondhe, a portait photographer and photojournalist, has been documenting similarieis between New York and Bombay (Mumbai) since 2008: An art director once told me, “I know you can shoot exotic things abroad and make them look beautiful, but can you take pictures of familiar things and make them look beautiful as well.” Which was interesting to me because when I would show work for jobs in India, people would ask me why they needed to see “photos of boring everyday things in India.” New York art directors are just like Bombay art directors. In fact, New Yorkers in general are just like Bombayites and the more I looked around the more I realized that the two cities are exactly the same. (via)
posted by ChuraChura at 5:14 AM PST - 10 comments

July 24

Excitingly trans-genic mice

"On the surface, it looks as if our identity as male or female is determined in the womb. The decision seems final – a genetic switch flicks towards either setting, and locks into place for the rest of our lives." [more inside]
posted by Blasdelb at 11:47 PM PST - 52 comments

COICA Round Two

Senator Leahy's Protect IP Act would require that U.S. ISPs impose an 'internet death penalty' upon domain after merely a preliminary injunction from a U.S. court that suspects the site of being 'dedicated to infringing activities', even if the domain's owner had never been notified and was not subject to U.S. jurisdiction. There is concern that the legislation would fragment the DNS system and facilitate DNS spoofing by obstructing DNSSEC (pdf). There is also an open letter opposing the bill signed by 108 Law Professors who study intellectual property law. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 11:27 PM PST - 29 comments


The Basket Cat Blog: Shiro loves very small baskets. He also wears flowered hats (sometimes vegetables) and enjoys the idyllic Japanese countryside of Iwate Prefecture. He and his brothers are very chill. Many short but sweet videos of them have been uploaded to YouTube on the shironekoshiro channel. The blog is updated frequently and has extensive archives. More archives here. Twitter Facebook [more inside]
posted by bobobox at 9:12 PM PST - 35 comments


On July 25th pilgrims arrive at Santiago de Compostela for the holy feast day of St. James. The medieval pilgrimage route has seen a spike in popularity in recent years and has been portrayed in both classic and contemporary film as an introspective journey. However, travelers along the way also pass many reminders of Spain's history of religious conflict such as a monument to Ferregut's final duel, the final resting place of El Sid, and the final battleground of Roland. Images of the saint himself can sometimes be controversial as well.
posted by Winnemac at 8:12 PM PST - 23 comments

beanplating spatial geometry in The Shining

It was like I’d been here before. I mean we’ve all had feelings of déjà vu but this was ridiculous. It’s almost like I knew what was going to be around every corner.
posted by juv3nal at 5:35 PM PST - 169 comments

Stewardess Uniform Collection

In the seven years since its last* appearance in the blue, Cliff Muskiet's Stewardess Uniform Collection has grown to more than 1,000 different uniforms from more than 400 different airlines. [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 4:51 PM PST - 25 comments

Bankster Gangs

Bankster Gangs (SLYT)
posted by tomswift at 4:39 PM PST - 12 comments

Goodbye Sister Jean

Leprosy in India has officially been eliminated since 2005 as prevalence of the disease has fallen to historic lows. But what was once a public health issue sometimes looks more like a political or religious one as some of the Christian charities that treat victims come under sustained pressure. [more inside]
posted by MuffinMan at 2:16 PM PST - 17 comments

Reading the news has been rough this week. Here's some good news.

Early this morning, the law that legalized Same-Sex Marriage in New York State went into effect, with many couples choosing to tie the knot at the stroke of midnight. In New York City, the city clerk will be working overtime to process marriage licenses for the 823 same-sex couples expected to wed there today, having adding extra capacity to ensure that all couples who signed up in advance would not be turned away. LGBT weddings are expected to bring an additional $155 million in tourism revenues into the state over the next 12 months, and governor Andrew Cuomo's approval ratings are currently the highest of any US state governor following the passage of the bill.
posted by schmod at 12:33 PM PST - 148 comments

Has the Code of The Zodiac Killer Been Cracked?

Corey Starliper of Tewksbury, Massachusetts believes he has solved the last Zodiac serial killer cipher and has identified the person who terrorized northern California in the late '60s. "Zodiac sent encrypted communication to area newspapers, taking credit for the killings and warning of more to come ..." His most famous: a 340-character cipher, "was mailed to the San Francisco Chronicle, according to zodiackillerfacts.com. To this day, the cipher has not been completely cracked. Starliper, however, believes he has found the solution to that code." [more inside]
posted by ericb at 10:07 AM PST - 56 comments

What did The Battle of Hastings smell like?

There's a growing movement to make sure that smells are incorporated into historical records. Historians, perfumers, and florists all want to make sure we can smell the past.
posted by rageagainsttherobots at 9:27 AM PST - 36 comments

Tax Soda, Subsidize Veggies

Subsidizing Healthy Foods by Taxing Unhealthy Foods. Mark Bitman proposes a "national program that would make progress on a half-dozen problems at once — disease, budget, health care, environment, food access and more — while paying for itself." [NYT] [more inside]
posted by modernnomad at 9:23 AM PST - 102 comments


The talks between President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner "collapsed" Friday with little more than a week to go before the United States may effectively default on its debt. The two parties have been in ongoing negotiations for months over GOP refusal to raise the legal limit on national debt unless tied to a significant package of spending cuts - with some members and activists opposed to any increase whatsoever [more inside]
posted by crayz at 6:58 AM PST - 3183 comments

Kill Math

Bret Victor on WorryDream The power to understand and predict the quantities of the world should not be restricted to those with a freakish knack for manipulating abstract symbols. When most people speak of Math, what they have in mind is more its mechanism than its essence. This "Math" consists of assigning meaning to a set of symbols, blindly shuffling around these symbols according to arcane rules, and then interpreting a meaning from the shuffled result. The process is not unlike casting lots.
posted by naight at 6:47 AM PST - 19 comments

The Bomb That Didn't Go Off

The Bomb That Didn't Go Off. Since September 11, 2001, we have finely honed our fear of the other. But the truth is, the overwhelming majority of our terrorism has always been homegrown. And it is times like these — times of anger and disaffection — when we turn on ourselves, and kill. [more inside]
posted by WalterMitty at 5:53 AM PST - 36 comments

Bloomberg Fights Coal

"Ending coal power production is the right thing to do, because while it may seem to be an inexpensive energy source the impact on our environment and the impact on public health is significant..." New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, has announced a donation of $50 million dollars to The Sierra Club's Beyond Coal Campaign.
posted by beisny at 5:40 AM PST - 28 comments

A Liquid Breakfast for the Ears

Fluid Radio stream experimental frequencies into the ether. Channel 2 is especially worth a listen, flowing forth a fairly constant warm wash of haunting melancholy and mellow fruitiness in post folk and post rock form. The reviews on the site appear to be written by an offspring of Monty Cantsin and Rrose Sélavy: I don't know what they're saying, but the reading of them brings zen-like quietude.
posted by titus-g at 1:08 AM PST - 13 comments

July 23

Cheapass As In Free

Did you know that popular, absurdly inexpensive board game producer James Ernest's Cheapass Games has released some of their most popular games as free PDFs? Among them Deadwood, Devil Bunny Needs A Ham, The Big Cheese, FALLING and Unexploded Cow? [more inside]
posted by JHarris at 6:07 PM PST - 34 comments

We Could've Had The Moon

Tim Kreider writes a little essay comparing the Moon and Afghanistan.
posted by The Whelk at 5:41 PM PST - 50 comments

Drums, bass, guitar, synth...

Alt-rockers MUTEMATH's new song lets you futz around with its individual tracks. Cool bonus: it alters both the audio track and an accompanying video of the part being played. Takes some time to load, but it's worth it to unleash your inner producer.
posted by Askiba at 4:36 PM PST - 7 comments

A Whack of Mousetraps

2D Photography Rube Goldberg. SLYT. 4.13 [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:13 PM PST - 15 comments

Tour de Firsts

After weeks of crashes, injuries, and withdrawls (previously), the 2011 Tour de France will come to a close tomorrow with the largely ceremonial ride into the Champs-Elysees. Barring something highly unusual, this year's winner will be Cadel Evans of BMC, whose time trial performance today vaulted him over Andy and Frank Schleck and makes him the first Australian to win the Tour. [more inside]
posted by Dr.Enormous at 2:10 PM PST - 99 comments


In 1875, the Portuguese cartoonist and caricaturist Rafael Bordalo Pinheiro invented an “everyman” to express the opinion of “Zé Povinho” – “ José of the People”, or “John Doe". His most famous “opinion” is the “manguito”, a universally-recognizable symbolic affront to the status quo, with the slogan “Toma!”, or “take that!” In the wake of the downgrade of Portugal’s sovereign debt to “junk” by Moody’s, the Portuguese were outraged. They reportedly jammed up the Moody's site. Zé Povinho responded with his usual aplomb. The figurines are made by hand and the anti-Moodys one went on sale this week. [Last link in Portuguese; some NSFW language and rude gestures in some of the links]
posted by chavenet at 1:58 PM PST - 5 comments

Land Of A Thousand YouTube Videos

Na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na naaaaaa
posted by jason's_planet at 1:56 PM PST - 59 comments

Before Doctor Who, there was Professor Quartermass

British manned space flights; an insidious threat from outer space; a man mutating into an evil alien, his human consciousness being eaten away; and a scientist - utterly anti-Establishment, courageous and cerebral - the only man who can fight it. No, not Doctor Who, but his highly distinguished predecessor, Prof Bernard Quatermass. A decade before Doctor Who first aired, the The Quartermass Experiment was the first science-fiction TV serial produced for adults, and a live-to-viewers BBC production, to boot. The show ran for six episodes in 1953, of which only the first two episodes are known survive. The short sci-fi series spun off three original sequels and a radio drama-documentary, along with movie re-makes of the first three series by Hammer Films. BBC brought back live TV with a 2005 adaptation of the original 1953 series. You can watch the various series on online (in parts on Daily Motion), thanks to fans of The British Rocket Group. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:01 PM PST - 21 comments

Baby got BRAC

The U.S. Army's Umatilla Chemical Weapons Depot is is set to shut down this fall. But the question of who should decide the future of the northeast Oregon depot reached the floor of the U.S. Senate Wednesday. The bill that won approval would keep that authority in the hands of a local commission rather than a federal agency. Oregon's Democratic U.S. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley co-sponsored the measure. [more inside]
posted by hippybear at 12:07 PM PST - 9 comments

"I don't care if it's a white cat or a black cat. It's a good cat so long as it catches mice."

Two Chinese bullet trains have collided with two coaches falling off a bridge after a lightning strike disabled the first train and signaling failed to alert the second in time. A few months previously the railways ministry expressed and subsequently retracted concerns that builders had ignored safety standards to complete construction more quickly. [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges at 11:21 AM PST - 39 comments

Vikings? More like Valkyrie, amirite?

It turns out that a bunch of the bodies in Viking burial sites that were categorized as male because they were buried with swords, etc, are actually female if you look at the bones. More details.
posted by rmd1023 at 11:10 AM PST - 51 comments

Baffled at a Bookcase

Alan Bennett returns to the library.
I have always been happy in libraries, though without ever being entirely at ease there. A scene that seems to crop up regularly in plays that I have written has a character, often a young man, standing in front of a bookcase feeling baffled.
posted by adamvasco at 10:52 AM PST - 3 comments

Epic doesn't begin to describe it.

Minecraft: Middle Earth - A tour of a nearly full scale recreation of Middle Earth in Minecraft.
posted by empath at 10:46 AM PST - 25 comments

Amy Winehouse (1983-2011)

Amy Jade Winehouse was found dead in her London home at the age of 27. CNN and BBC are providing breaking coverage of the story. The powerful British soul and R & B singer had a history of struggling with drugs and alcohol. [more inside]
posted by KillaSeal at 10:45 AM PST - 313 comments

So You Think You Can Solve The Kennedy Assassination

Want to (dis)prove who killed JFK? Start with the 5 million pages of material in the National Archives' Assassination Records Collection1. Better review the 26 volumes of hearings and exhibits published by the Warren Commission. And each frame of the Zapruder film2. And just to be on the safe side, the operating manual for his then top-of-the-line Bell & Howell 414PD camera. (1: previously, but with outdated link. 2: related) [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 9:37 AM PST - 73 comments

As I demonstrate in the body of this post, valuable information is contained therein.

"In this column I want to look at a not uncommon way of writing and structuring books. This approach, I will argue, involves the writer announcing at the outset what he or she will be doing in the pages that follow."
posted by shivohum at 7:34 AM PST - 60 comments

Anatomy of Norbiton

There is no paradigm for this kind of place. Accidental Norbiton is contingent, marginal, superfluous, an ugly necessity; it is like the wires coiled under your desk, behind your bookcases; it is like the suitcases gathering dust under your bed, on top of your wardrobe; an adjunct to living, part of the logistics, the bureaucracy, never what you might call life itself, the movement and centre and focus of which seem to prevail elsewhere. Perfect, then, for a life of accidental failure. Welcome to Norbiton. [more inside]
posted by carsonb at 6:20 AM PST - 16 comments

For me, it's Godzilla 1985...

How do you make someone cry for science? A Smithsonian magazine talks about a 2-minute 45-second clip from The Champ, starring a young Rick(y) Schroeder. [more inside]
posted by Katemonkey at 5:48 AM PST - 30 comments

July 22

Working With Wood: Intarsia

The art of intarsia was brought back to life primarily by Judy Gale Roberts in the early 1980's. Practiced in earlier times by artists such as fra Damiano da Bergamo, the technique is similar to marquetry. Intarsia is made by cutting different pieces of wood to shape, and sanding to fit them together tightly. Incredibly complex bas-relief pieces have been made by artists such as Kathy Wise.
posted by dibblda at 10:37 PM PST - 10 comments

Ralph and Carter

I know you can dance, but can you flatfoot? The Stanley Brothers of Virginia: Rank Strangers :: Jacob's Vision :: In The Pines :: How Mountain Gals Can Love
posted by puny human at 10:36 PM PST - 12 comments

Grover Won't Stop

Sesame Street a la BBoys. (Vimeo link)
posted by Nathanial Hörnblowér at 8:07 PM PST - 14 comments

EOL Robot Band

Rock Lobster, as performed by old electronic parts. Beautiful People, by the same mad genius's robotic band, End Of Life.
posted by mrzarquon at 7:35 PM PST - 27 comments

Beavis and Butt-Head are coming back!

In these dark days, only two men, er... guys... er, whatever they are, can save us. And they have answered the call! Beavis and Butt-head are returning!
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 5:38 PM PST - 102 comments

Ding Dong, DADT is dead.

Ding Dong, DADT is dead. Today marks the end of another era of discrimination against Americans who wish to serve in the armed forces. The Washington Post provides a handy recap.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 2:35 PM PST - 102 comments

Tooth Fairy Affair

Tooth Fairy Affair (SLYT - Vimeo) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 1:00 PM PST - 3 comments

I am a beautiful building!

Beautiful Buildings Club is a comic about politics, the Cold War, and the eternal conflict between beautiful buildings and the evil Bauhaus empire.
posted by kenko at 12:50 PM PST - 5 comments

A Dance With Dragons

Fifteen years after the publication of A Game of Thrones, the first volume in George R. R. Martin's [website] [blog] epic fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire, and six years after the publication of the fourth volume in the series, the fifth volume, A Dance With Dragons, was finally released on July 12, 2011 to critical and commercial success. [more inside]
posted by The Confessor at 12:20 PM PST - 234 comments

Va Pensiero

Riccardo Muti was conducting Nabucco at the Opera di Roma, until -to his delight- he was forced to interrupt the performance by pressure from the crowd. [more inside]
posted by Cobalt at 11:29 AM PST - 59 comments

Possession is Nine-Tenths of the Law

After researching Texas's unusually generous adverse possession laws, Kenneth Robinson filed a $16 Affadavit of Adverse Possession and moved into a home in Flower Mound, TX worth an estimated $300,000. [more inside]
posted by KathrynT at 11:28 AM PST - 128 comments

Lautner on Film

A short compilation of John Lautner houses featured in films. [more inside]
posted by xod at 10:37 AM PST - 6 comments

The shadows have lost a bit of magic

Movie host and film-lover Elwy Yost has passed away. [more inside]
posted by sardonyx at 9:44 AM PST - 20 comments

All space shuttle missions, in 8 minutes.

All space shuttle missions, in 8 minutes. (SLYT)
posted by Zarkonnen at 9:29 AM PST - 13 comments

Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant - a graphic novel, serialized online

Join MetaFilter's own TangoCharlie (Tony Cliff) for an illustrated adventure of swordplay and wordplay set in Turkey in the 1800s, in Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant (updated on Saturday mornings with four to six new pages). What is currently a full-color serialized graphic novel in four chapters started as a short self-published greyscale comic, which was nominated for an Eisner Award in 2008. As a bonus, Tony shares tips and lessons learned in the making of Delilah Dirk on his blog. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 7:47 AM PST - 15 comments

Putting Your Finger On It

Sexy Fingers [NSFW funky French 2011 AIDS prevention PSA]. And if that touched you the right way, you'll definitely want to poke around sexyfingers.org [also NSFW but loads of Flash Friday fun]. [more inside]
posted by Mike Mongo at 7:31 AM PST - 16 comments

Explosion in downtown Oslo

A big explosion occurred in downtown Oslo near the goverment building. Cause unknown so far, reports of injured and lots of broken windows. [more inside]
posted by palbo at 7:15 AM PST - 1280 comments

Inside the Google Plex

Don't Be Evil -- a somewhat philosophical review of two new books about Google.
posted by empath at 7:14 AM PST - 20 comments

Got PMS? Get Milk.

The Got Milk? folks new ad campaign was apparently too offensive for a lot of women. Who knew milk was so controversial? The video on this page (2 mins) contains the actual ad from the latest Got Milk campaign. It was targeted to men on how milk can alleviate PMS symptoms and make both of your lives better. After much criticism, it was pulled.
posted by Kokopuff at 7:06 AM PST - 91 comments

Drunk on Swedish meatballs

Animals drawn poorly on cocktail napkins with lasers shooting out of their eyes [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:02 AM PST - 20 comments

Friday Flash Fun: Shield Defense

Say goodbye to your work flow. In Shield Defense you play a building with a force field. 50 levels, high learning curve, be prepared to boggle.
posted by parmanparman at 6:35 AM PST - 21 comments

"For me, animated film is about magic".

Jan Svankmajer’s Bonecreatures - Bones, dolls and a very peculiar interpretation of Alice in Wonderland together with three other short videos Et Cetera, Flora and Table Manners.
posted by adamvasco at 6:04 AM PST - 5 comments

but no stones

Sticks is a Flash game where you use some minor engineering skills to make a dude rich. [more inside]
posted by DU at 4:55 AM PST - 13 comments

Korean Rapper, Stanford Alum, Cyberbullied

The Persecution of Daniel Lee: Korean rapper was a victim of an online smear campaign that said he didn't go to Stanford. But it gets worse... [more inside]
posted by k8t at 4:04 AM PST - 53 comments

What's in our food?

My Life with Science, Art and Food: "Using scientific laboratory photo equipment, I journey over the surfaces of both organic and processed foods: my own favorites and America’s over-indulgences. The closer the lens got, the more I saw food and consumers of food (all of us!) as part of a larger eco-system than mere sustenance." [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:03 AM PST - 4 comments

July 21

This guy does what Al Gore can only dream of....

Hot off the heels of the rousing critical success of Transformers 3, producer Don Murphy has greenlighted a feature-length, live-action Captain Planet film.
posted by schmod at 9:51 PM PST - 97 comments


How One Man Hacked His Way Into the Slot-Machine Industry
posted by Chrysostom at 8:36 PM PST - 33 comments

Conjoined Twins Share Their Story

Stefan and Tyler are twins conjoined at the head. These brothers both play the violin and have a form of high-functioning autism, but one is homosexual and the other is heterosexual. You can watch a video of them here.
posted by GnomeChompsky at 8:36 PM PST - 45 comments

I don’t think any of us grew up into the world we were hoping for or expecting

On the heels of the newest volume of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (and the recent completion of the controversial Neonomicon, which Moore suggests may be his last non-League comics work), Alan Moore (previously) gives Wired a lengthy interview that includes his thoughts on DC Comics' upcoming reboot (also previously) and the dilemma of the fan-turned-writer.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:34 PM PST - 39 comments

When the armor no longer needs us - what happens?

The Weaponized Transhuman: Halo, Deus Ex, Crysis, Bioshock, Warhammer, and the Future of Wetware (Us). Related: New Deus Ex: Human Revolution trailer.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:17 PM PST - 37 comments

Ensemble Monologue

Actor Jim Meskimen reads Clarence's monologue, slightly adapted, from Shakespeare's Richard III [text] in 25 celebrity impressions. Bonus points for using Ron Howard's voice for the line "Though 'twere to buy a world of happy days," and Barack Obama's for "Such terrible impression made the dream." (via @craigyferg) [more inside]
posted by maryr at 6:39 PM PST - 28 comments

What is a man and a woman?

Kudzu and the California Marriage Amendment Proposition 8 Eliminates Right of Same-Sex Couples to Marry: Initiative Constitutional Amendment SECTION I. Title This measure shall be known and may be cited as the "California Marriage Protection Act." SECTION 2. Article I. Section 7.5 is added to the California Constitution, to read: Sec. 7.5. Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California. The biggest problem is that laws like the California initiative will make the courts decide who is male and who is female — and all available decision criteria create unavoidable miscarriages of justice that will, or should, dismay initiative proponents. You're probably thinking, about now, that I'm going to exaggerate the sex-definitional 1 problem: Probably, you and everyone you know is unambiguously male or female — or at least has always believed himself or herself to be so, and nobody's challenged that, and nobody's likely to. That's true, absolutely: Only maybe one live birth in 100 has some non-standard sex anatomy, and genetic anomalies are slightly rarer than that. However, let's talk about those 1-in-100 or 1-in-1000 cases — because those could be you, or your aunt, or your best friend — and because our system of law has to deal with 1-in-1000 situations, too.
posted by robbyrobs at 5:35 PM PST - 48 comments

The Way Of All Flesh

British figurative painter Lucian Freud, whose uncompromising, fleshy portraits made him one of the world's most revered and coveted artists, has died aged 88. Tate Gallery Google image search. [NSFWish]
posted by chavenet at 4:23 PM PST - 42 comments

Insert Tim Cappello Joke/GIF Here

Is the epic saxophone solo returning to pop music? With recent good time summer radio hits by ubiquitous hit makers Katy Perry and Lady Gaga featuring an unexpected saxophone solo, is this a hint towards a return of the woodwind as a staple in rock/pop music or just ironic posturing from vapid "tastemakers"?
posted by mediocre at 4:16 PM PST - 126 comments

Cenk Uygur and the ethos of corporate-owned media

Glenn Greenwald writes about Cenk Uygur's recent firing from MSNBC in Salon Magazine Despite having achieved the highest ratings ever for MSNBC last quarter (beating FOX News), Cenk Uygur was fired from the network this week. Rev. Al Sharpton will be replacing Cenk in the coveted timeslot formerly occupied by Keith Olbermann. Glenn talks about he reasons a major network might do this and Cenk introduces some revelations about why he was let go in in this weeks Young Turks podcast. [more inside]
posted by Poet_Lariat at 4:13 PM PST - 53 comments

[ your pun here ]

Amp Radio Calgary's controversial "Breast Summer Contest Ever", which provoked complaints to the Ad Standards Council and the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, has awarded its prize of $10,000 towards breast augmentation surgery to Avery Mitchell, a 23-year-old transgendered woman. Mitchell received 76% online votes in the contest, supported by notorious "boobies"-loving website FARK.com.
posted by Zozo at 3:06 PM PST - 27 comments

Compromise this.

The US Debt envisioned in hundred-dollar bills.
posted by Phire at 2:57 PM PST - 88 comments

Funny Money

Pop-Cultured Currency - Technically, defacing US currency is a crime – but artist James Charles doesn’t seem to be in any legal trouble for his awesome series of Pop Culture Cash. His portraits, created on real money using ink, turn dead presidents into colorfully amusing pop culture icons. Alternate site with larger pics.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 2:22 PM PST - 22 comments

Hey, you've got your maps in my art!

Maps that make you smile, maps that make you look fashionable and maps that keep you warm.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:15 PM PST - 6 comments

Real high class lords keep it real.

Damn, it feels good to be a Lannister. [SLYT] (Also, Game of Thrones spoilers!) (NSFW)
posted by valkyryn at 1:22 PM PST - 39 comments

Could Murdoch really not have known about phone-hacking? One journalist says yes

Could Rupert Murdoch really not have known about phone-hacking? Veteran Canadian journalist and TV producer Howard Bernstein thinks it’s possible, because something almost as bad happened at CTV News, which “produced a story on Chinese students keeping Canadians out of Canadian universities. It was a crock, fabricated by a senior producer on the show.... I am certain [the] then-president of CTV had absolutely no idea.... So why is it so hard to believe that Rupert and son didn’t know about the telephone hacking?”
posted by joeclark at 12:58 PM PST - 83 comments

Henson & Oz

Henson & Oz: A tribute to one of the great comedy teams of the 20th century. [12m13s] They worked together for 27 years, from 1963 until Henson's untimely death in 1990, and their friendship and professional association spanned several TV shows and a series of feature films. This video essay sums up their excellence, and their significance.
posted by hippybear at 12:44 PM PST - 14 comments

Look at My Professional White Background. Now Look at Your Site. Now Back to Mine. Now....

If your website is full of assholes, it's your fault. from Anil Dash. [more inside]
posted by zarq at 12:42 PM PST - 142 comments

Gimme three feet, gimme three feet mister

Six animations from Commute Orlando on cycling and pedestrian safety.
posted by klangklangston at 11:47 AM PST - 41 comments

'Apparently these things happen to other parents too! I'm just as shocked as anyone.'

Parenting. Illustrated with crappy pictures.
posted by anastasiav at 10:13 AM PST - 72 comments


Holy Maury Mother of God is your one stop shop for gifs, non sequiturs, and reaction shots from the Maury Povich Show.
posted by hermitosis at 10:07 AM PST - 51 comments

"That doesn't help with your policy though."

The Alamo Drafthouse cinema chain has a tradition of airing humorous celebrity "PSA" bumpers urging theatergoers not to talk during the movie. Will Ferrell. George A. Romero. Jonah Hill and Michael Cera. Danny DeVito. R. Lee Ermey. Governor Ann Richards. Recently, Drafthouse owner Tim League sat down for an interview with The Social Network's Jesse Eisenberg and attempted to get him to record a "Don't Talk" PSA. It did not go as planned. (Previously.)
posted by eugenen at 9:48 AM PST - 46 comments

Criminalization of walking

When Design Kills: The criminalization of walking
posted by garlic at 9:41 AM PST - 180 comments

Lift and separate

Initially the conventional wisdom was that spacesuits “would be like rockets: adamantine, metallic, armored and smooth.” But in practice, rigid spacesuits repeatedly failed under testing. So when Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walked on the Moon they were protected from the vacuum of space by flexible spacesuits crafted from twenty-one layers of fabric, “each with a distinct yet interrelated function, custom-sewn for them by seamstresses whose usual work was fashioning bras and girdles” for the Playtex Corporation. The Spirit of the Spacesuit , Spacesuit: Fashioning Apollo [more inside]
posted by Herodios at 9:14 AM PST - 25 comments

How Much Does It Cost To Make A Hit Song?

How Much Does It Cost To Make A Hit Song? "Def Jam started paying for Rihanna's recent single, "Man Down," more than a year ago. In March of 2010, the label held a writing camp in L.A. to create the songs for Rihanna's album, Loud." [more inside]
posted by incandissonance at 7:53 AM PST - 62 comments

British wrestling posters

British Wresting Posters: a Flickr set. See also British wrestling photos, and the British wrestling archive. (Via everlasting blort)
posted by OmieWise at 6:48 AM PST - 24 comments

“I think it’s important to do things every once in a while purely because they amuse you.”

The Great Right Hype: Tucker Carlson and his Daily Caller (CJR, via longform.org)
posted by box at 6:30 AM PST - 88 comments

Humans, presumably, come from Hummus

How to talk to an alien, a detailed guide to first contact. You might want to invent your own language for just such an occasion. Or just get to know the most common patterns for fictional alien languages.(previously)
posted by Wrinkled Stumpskin at 5:29 AM PST - 46 comments

Thinking of taking a photograph?

Big Birds Captured in Action is just one gallery on PhotoExtract; there is also Hdr with pics like this or portraits like this.
There are a large amount of categories to explore; such as portraits or sea or Experimental.
Editor Jarek Klimek recommends 61 photographers to follow on Google+.
posted by adamvasco at 4:14 AM PST - 18 comments

Apple Stoer

Blogger BirdAboard discovers not one, but three fake Apple stores in Kunming, China.
posted by bwg at 2:36 AM PST - 74 comments

July 20

The Library of Congress documentary

The Library of Congress (1:30m), a tour documentary by C-SPAN.
posted by stbalbach at 11:32 PM PST - 8 comments

Ideas + Energy = Change

DO Lectures: a smaller, gentler TED, with annual conferences in Wales and the US. Every twenty-minute conference presentation is available as free online video. A sampling: Tim Berners-Lee on how the web just happened. Peter Segger on soil. David Allen on optimizing your brain.  A complete list of presenters. The Do Village blog.
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 11:18 PM PST - 11 comments

A tool to test myself

Letters from Johns. Letters from Working Girls. Letters from Men Who Watch Pornography. Three projects from Susannah Breslin.
posted by vidur at 11:08 PM PST - 16 comments

Pakistan's Middle Class Extremists

Why Development Aid won't solve Radicalism "The data revealed four findings that undermine common wisdom about support for militancy in Pakistan...Overall, the findings suggest that arguments tying support for militancy to individuals’ socioeconomic status -- and the policy recommendations that often flow from this assumption -- require substantial revision."
posted by stroke_count at 10:52 PM PST - 6 comments

The Artway Project

The Artway Project - Alexander Artway photographer, adventurer - Throughout his life, Artway made photographs. He left an archive of over 5000 negatives and prints of Russia, New York, Philadelphia, and more - each one meticulously crafted and beautifully conceived. Most were made during the 1930's and range from iconic images of Manhattan to earthy illustrations of his Russian family working the land. New York 1930 -1938 - On the Deep Blue Sea - Russia 1927 - 1936 - Nudes (NSFW)
posted by Bighappyfunhouse at 7:20 PM PST - 4 comments

Can he swing from a thread? Take a look overhead

The trailer for the upcoming Spider-Man reboot has been released. But does it rip off the 2008 videogame Mirrors Edge?
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:57 PM PST - 184 comments

Soviet Literature Summarized

Sovlit.com is a very large and comprehensive site dedicated to the literature of the Soviet Union (both official and dissident), with summaries (fans of the genres might find the examples of Soviet science fiction and spy novels to be particularly interesting), biographies, and even some full translations of short stories from authors such as Isaac Babel, Vasily Grossman, Yevgeny Zamyatin, and others.
posted by a louis wain cat at 6:43 PM PST - 10 comments

O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love, what a beautiful Pussy you are!

Often attributed to Rossini, the «Duetto buffo di due gatti» ("humorous duet for two cats") is a popular performance piece for sopranos. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte at 6:31 PM PST - 11 comments

Abel Gance "Napoleon" Screening With Live Orchestra in March/April 2012.

Abel Gance "Napoleon" To Be Screened With Live Orchestra in March/April 2012. Kevin Brownlow partially restored version of Abel Gance's 1927 epic "Napoleon" was released in the late's 70's and early 80's. Initial viewing were shown with a live orchestra. Francis Ford Coppola had the distribution rights in the US and had his father, Carmine Coppola score the film. Brownlow's friend Carl Davis scored the European version. This along with other distribution issues lead to problems holding up any future release of any newer versions in this country until now.
posted by goalyeehah at 6:16 PM PST - 12 comments


U.S. Census Data for California: Married Couples with No Children are now the largest number of households, at 26%. 'New census figures show that the percentage of Californians who live in "nuclear family" households — a married man and a woman raising their children — has dropped again over the last decade, to 23.4% of all households. That represents a 10% decline in 10 years, measured as a percentage of the state's households.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 5:42 PM PST - 51 comments

Marriage in America

Divorce rates are higher than ever? Think again. A large majority—92%—of children whose families make more than $75,000 a year live with two parents (including step-parents). At the bottom of the income scale—families earning less than $15,000—only 20% of children live with two parents. Of those who first tied the knot between 1975 and 1979, 29% were divorced within ten years. Among those who first married between 1990 and 1994, only 16.5% were.
posted by lohmannn at 4:53 PM PST - 40 comments

Time to update your moon charts for the solar system.

Pluto may have been downsized in 2006, but it's still living large, moon wise: A fourth moon has been discovered orbiting the dwarf planet.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 2:11 PM PST - 80 comments

CLOUDed judgment

The chief of the world's leading physics lab at CERN in Geneva has prohibited scientists from drawing conclusions from a major experiment. The CLOUD ("Cosmics Leaving Outdoor Droplets") experiment examines the role that energetic particles from deep space play in cloud formation. Rolf-Dieter Heuer, Director General of CERN, said in an interview: "I have asked the colleagues to present the results clearly, but not to interpret them. That would go immediately into the highly political arena of the climate change debate. One has to make clear that cosmic radiation is only one of many parameters." [more inside]
posted by thescientificmethhead at 1:40 PM PST - 39 comments

One-man band

'A one-man band is a musician who plays a number of musical instruments simultaneously using their hands, feet, limbs, and various mechanical contraptions.' Giulio Carmassi such a multi-instrumentalist. He uploads to YouTube jazz tunes & evergreens he records in his home studio. He often write, perform, sings, shoot & edit himself the whole productions. He also has a professional career.
posted by growabrain at 12:44 PM PST - 26 comments

Someone I Never Met

The Grandy Man: the story of Yankees All-Star Curtis Granderson's bond with the family of Brian Bluhm, a Detroit Tigers fan and blogger, gunned down in the Virginia Tech shootings in 2007. [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 12:44 PM PST - 6 comments

GQ Magazine Goes Down

GQ Gaffe in naming Boston Worst Dressed City: GQ Magazine in its "The 40 Worst-Dressed Cities in America" described Boston as suffering "from a kind of Style Down Syndrome" (since redacted). In a constructive response, Dr. Brian Skotko responds, "Mock my pants, not my sister." [more inside]
posted by plinth at 12:42 PM PST - 101 comments

It Takes Two (Argentines) To Tango

There is a crisis in Argentina due to foreign dancers' increasing proficiency in the tango, allowing them to defeat locals in important competitions.
posted by reenum at 12:25 PM PST - 28 comments

Is a man not entitled to the sweat of his brow?

Gamers, have you ever looked in the sci-fi aisle of your bookstore and wondered how there could possibly be novels set in the worlds of "Gears of War" or "Doom," but nothing in the richly imagined distopia of Bioshock? Have you fed your Art Deco obsession with Ryan-inspired fan fiction, wishing for something more? Wish no longer: Bram Stoker Award winner, sci-fi novelist, punk rocker, Blue Oyster Cult lyricist, etc. John Shirley has written the first official BioShock novel, "BioShock: Rapture," which hit store shelves yesterday. An excerpt of the book, which is a prequel to the first game, is offered here from publisher Tor. [more inside]
posted by jbickers at 12:16 PM PST - 63 comments

"Under Title IX, a woman is entitled to equal access to everything on a college campus. That includes being safe."

In response to campus advocates and new directives from the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights, Stanford University has lowered the evidence standard for cases of sexual misconduct from "beyond a reasonable doubt" to a "preponderance of the evidence". This move, which applied immediately and took effect during then on-going proceedings, was met with praise from students("If the new Standard of Proof bothers you, there’s an easy solution: don’t sexually assault people"), but has proved controversial among civil liberties organizations ("a shocking disregard for fair procedures on campus"), academic scholars ("a declaration of martial law against men...and a betrayal of the Title IX equity law"), and alumni ("The President’s recent decision is all the proof I need to know that the University shows little respect for the rights of students"). [more inside]
posted by Chipmazing at 12:13 PM PST - 123 comments

Geek Panic!

John Siracusa's (27,000 word) review of Mac OS X 10.7 Lion. [more inside]
posted by mazola at 10:55 AM PST - 219 comments

The Case Against the Grand Egyptian Museum

Mohamed Elshahed writes in Jadaliyya about the many problems with the museums of Egypt, including their conflation of "Egyptian history" with "ancient Egypt", their tendency to address themselves to tourists rather than Egyptians, their recent domination by the influence Zahi Hawass (who has resigned as Minister of Antiquities for the second time in five months, after having first left his post in March over the looting of archaeological sites during the recent uprising), their poor organisation and shadowy finances and, not least, the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities' use as a torture site during the protests in Tahrir Square.
posted by Dim Siawns at 10:42 AM PST - 10 comments

The NFL star and the brain injuries that destroyed him

Before the former American football player Dave Duerson killed himself, he asked that his brain be left to researchers studying head injuries among athletes.
posted by jonesor at 10:19 AM PST - 104 comments

The Eli Porter Documentary

People's Champion: Behind the Battle (The Eli Porter Documentary) [via] [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 9:48 AM PST - 7 comments

WTF Utah?!? I can't have a stiff drink?

Utahs liquor laws loosen, change, yet still seem the same (NYT) [more inside]
posted by handbanana at 8:45 AM PST - 101 comments

Sleepy Man Banjoy Boys: not at all like the Jonas Brothers

Let me introduce you to the Sleepy Man Banjo Boys, fans of the Earl Scruggs style and sound. Don't be fooled by their name or their youth, as they have two speeds: fast and faster. Their name comes from their youngest member, Jonny Mizzone, who often played the banjo on a bed. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:22 AM PST - 15 comments

iTerm2 - Mac OS Terminal Replacement

Although Apple's OS X operating system is making inroads with power users, providing Apple style and usability over a FreeBSD-derived UNIX-certified architecture, many find the built-in terminal emulator sadly lacking both UNIX feel and Apple polish. Fortunately, MeFi's own jewzilla has picked up the ball on the most popular third-party Terminal replacement, iTerm, and rolled out something altogether new and wonderful: iTerm2. [via mefi projects]
posted by Mr. Anthropomorphism at 8:04 AM PST - 86 comments

Evidence-Based African First Aid Guidelines and Training Materials

Evidence Based, Culturally-relevant African First Aid Guidelines and Training Materials, from researchers at the Belgian Red Cross and Stellenbosch University. [more inside]
posted by The White Hat at 8:00 AM PST - 3 comments

I feel like I know what terpsichorean means, but I don't actually remember.

How many words do you know?
posted by jacquilynne at 7:34 AM PST - 251 comments

Sweatshop - a new game for kids!

Sweatshop is a new educational game for teenagers from Britain's Channel 4. Produced by Littleloud, Sweatshop aims to teach teens about the working conditions behind their clothes through a mixture of frenetic, tower defense-based arcade levels set in a contract clothing factory and factual inserts between levels. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 7:24 AM PST - 19 comments

Moirism voyeurism

Comedian Stewart Lee clarifies his view of comedian Michael McIntyre following a Jan Moir (the very same) article in the Daily Mail (itself a culmination of coverage elsewhere), which included for me the definitive out of context quotation... [more inside]
posted by nthdegx at 7:20 AM PST - 35 comments

The History of the Pizza Box

The History of the Pizza Box
posted by ShooBoo at 7:18 AM PST - 32 comments


The Black Rock Collective released their third zine free in digital format earlier this month. A group composed of artists with disparate styles gathered from all across the globe. Previous work includes shows with Threadless and custom sets of playing cards.
posted by mean cheez at 7:17 AM PST - 6 comments

Roads? Where we're going, we don't need roads.

Pop Pilgrims : "When the AV Club Travels, we always make time to visit pop culture landmarks. If something memorable happened in the world of film, tv, books, or music, we want to go there. We're not just tourists, we're POP PILGRIMS." [more inside]
posted by crunchland at 4:51 AM PST - 13 comments

If you've seen these videos before you'll enjoy watching them again

571 is out. I don't have time for the longest video ever on youtube. 48 hours is too much. 36 hours, 24 hours,... too much. 13 hours? Too long! I don't have time for 10 hours. On the other hand, this film seemed all too short. It reminded me of another film with some guy and a cat (although Part 2 was better) which I think I saw in an abstract movie about food. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:56 AM PST - 24 comments

Stop the Keystone XL Pipeline

Naomi Klein, David Suzuki, Wendell Berry and others invite you to come to Washington DC and get arrested in an ongoing protest that aims to stop the Keystone XL oil pipeline from being constructed.
posted by mhjb at 3:22 AM PST - 24 comments

Fucking wanker!

"F**king wanker!" "Wanker!" "You f**king wanker!" "You f**king wanker! You tosspot!" "You stupid wanker!" "I am not a wanker!" "F**king are!" And the classic, "Wuuuarrrrgggh!" Ladies and gentleman, I bring you deranged Bristolian electric bicyclist Taypet21's YouTube channel. [more inside]
posted by hnnrs at 1:52 AM PST - 63 comments

You, you got what I need.

The History of Rap - Part 2 - w/Jimmy Fallon, Justin Timberlake, The Roots. (SLYT) [more inside]
posted by sharkfu at 1:12 AM PST - 26 comments

July 19

New York. The Big Apple. The City of Dreams. The Hobart of the North.

[AustraliaFilter] A bunch of fine bloggers - Ben Pobjie, Giles Hardie, Katherine Feeney, Karl Quinn, Sarah McInerney, Jenna Clarke and a few others - are writing hilarious MasterChef Recaps.
posted by vidur at 10:49 PM PST - 55 comments

Boredom from having thought about myself to answer all these questions

Proust is a way for you and your family to share and preserve your stories, one question at a time. The site takes its name from the Proust Questionnaire. Stories can be viewed in several different ways and be set as private or public.
posted by unliteral at 10:06 PM PST - 17 comments

I don't give a fuck about money.

Howard Stern and Robin Quivers sat down for a 90 minute interview with Lady Gaga. In it, they talk about sex, drugs, music, success, personal history, trials and tribulations, and whether or not her parents call her Stephanie or Gaga. It was posted to Soundcloud, and you can listen to it here.
posted by hippybear at 7:55 PM PST - 129 comments

Meanwhile, in Japan | Katsuyo Aoki

I feel I am able to express an - atmosphere- that is a part of the complex world in this age. Katsuyo Aoki was born in 1972 in Tokyo, JAPAN, he work principally with ceramics, incorporating various decorative styles, patterns, and symbolic forms.
posted by at the crossroads at 7:38 PM PST - 10 comments

Awesome Beard Makes Games More Awesome

Robin Williams and his daughter Zelda are in two commercials promoting the re-release of The Legend of Zelda, Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo 3DS. Zelda William's name is not coincidental, as she was named after the video game princess.
posted by SpacemanStix at 6:00 PM PST - 70 comments

GoPro or Go Home

MeFi has seen a GoPro camera attached to a sword, but after running across a video of one attached to a Hula Hoop (it'll make you dizzy) I decided to look for more and found a trove of sports, most of which are created by GoPro and as such may come across as advertising, but some are independently shot, so put that aside if you can. I'll probably never take up any of these activities, but I get an idea of what they're like via helmet or pole-cam. There's the Base Jump; the GoPro at 80,000 feet (near space); Boogie Boarding Surf; Surfing; Racing up Pike's Peak; Mountain Biking; a Kayak Competition; Kiteboarding; Longboarding; the 2010 Highlight Reel and many more. Damn, now I want one!
posted by bwg at 4:31 PM PST - 50 comments

dog day in summer with orange

Orange sucking dog. [slyt]
posted by nickyskye at 4:30 PM PST - 48 comments

Out went my heart's new fire and left it cold.

After weeks of rumors, it's official, Ron Howard's ambitious adaptation of Stephen King's Dark Tower series has been cancelled.
posted by Panjandrum at 4:08 PM PST - 88 comments

"Pound pastrami, can kraut, six bagels—bring home for Emma."

A Canticle for Leibowitz (1981, NPR); an audio adaptation of Walter Miller's 1960 history of the Albertian Order of Leibowitz in the centuries after the Flame Deluge. [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 2:37 PM PST - 68 comments

Yay! Free Candy!

Suspicious Vans
posted by BitterOldPunk at 2:32 PM PST - 87 comments

Detroit's Main Street

Woodward Avenue through the years. A historical photo gallery of Detroit's Main Street.
posted by jjray at 2:30 PM PST - 14 comments

Entartete Kunst

74 years ago today, Nazi officials debuted an exhibit of "degenerate art" in Munich made up from pieces among the over 5,000 works of art the government had confiscated, including works by Paul Klee, Marc Chagall, Piet Mondrian, and Wassily Kandisnsky. Most of the pieces the Nazis confiscated were later publically burned, although some was auctioned off or kept by prominent Nazis. Last year, a few of the confiscated sculptures were recovered from a bombed-out basement and exhibited. Today, you can view images from the exhibition catalogue as well as an unfinished recreation of the exhibit. [more inside]
posted by Copronymus at 1:57 PM PST - 33 comments

The eye in the sky: Photos by Stephan Zirwes

"The (mostly) aerial photography of Stephan Zirwes is a thing of great beauty. Scale, pattern, grids, colour, texture and drama – his work covers it all. "
posted by Astro Zombie at 1:27 PM PST - 14 comments

"Mrs. America, tell me how is your favorite son?"

Pop quiz! What do these musicians have in common: Lou Reed, E Street Band keyboardists Roy Bittan and Danny Federici, rhythm section Andrew Bodnar and Stephen Goulding of The Rumour, dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson, erstwhile SNL bandleader G.E. Smith, session horn section the Brecker Brothers, LaBelle alum Nona Hendryx, guitar virtuoso Adrian Belew, and David Johansen of the New York Dolls? Answer: they were (most of) the studio band on the 1981 album Escape Artist by Garland Jeffreys. Which raises the question, "Garland who?" [more inside]
posted by FelliniBlank at 12:09 PM PST - 22 comments

Honest tea and Honesty

Honest Tea has an unmanned iced tea stand set up at 5th and Market ih Philly today. You can watch a web camera to see if people are being honest and leaving a dollar for their tea or grabbing that iced tea and running. [more inside]
posted by yeoz at 11:28 AM PST - 191 comments

Look. At. All. Of. Those. Wiggles.

Behold the infectious ecstasy of the Rainbow Sponge Lady. (SLYT)
posted by hermitosis at 11:25 AM PST - 62 comments

National Water Gun Fight Day - July 30th

Next Saturday, July 30th, is National Water Gun Fight day. Are you team blue, or team red? You can have a water gun fight in the darnedest of places so get your squirt gun of choice and don't forget the first rule of war: He who takes a nap shall get blasted. [more inside]
posted by cashman at 11:25 AM PST - 19 comments

Reddit Co-founder Indicted for Alleged Data Theft

NY Times reports that Aaron Swartz, co-founder of Reddit, co-author of the RSS 1.0 spec, founder of Demand Progress, former fellow at Harvard's Center for Ethics, and founder of theinfo.org, a site "for people with large data sets" was indicted today on charges of stealing a large data set from MIT: JSTOR, an archive of academic papers. He faces up to 35 years in prison and $1 million in fines. [more inside]
posted by scottreynen at 11:15 AM PST - 238 comments

Mars Bar Blues

The East Village's glorious and infamous Mars Bar, on the chopping block since winter, is closed for good. [more inside]
posted by griphus at 11:08 AM PST - 37 comments

Potter Babies

Baby Voldemort toy is the most horrifying thing to come out of the Harry Potter world: Tracy Ann Lister creates realistic dolls of characters from Harry Potter as infants.
posted by Lutoslawski at 11:03 AM PST - 52 comments

Beaded Beads

Beaded PolyhedraMore beadwork (mathematical and otherwise) by Gwen Fisher ❂ Still more beadwork galleries at beAdinfinitumThree-dimensional finite point groups and the symmetry of beaded beads [pdf - some algebra, but lots of illustrations]
posted by Wolfdog at 10:39 AM PST - 6 comments

Genetics, PR, and meeting new people.

Non-Africans Are Part Neanderthal, Genetic Research Shows. [more inside]
posted by dglynn at 10:06 AM PST - 133 comments

The Legend of the Goatriders

The Legend of The Goatriders (Bokkenrijders): In the Limburg region at the end of the 18th century, between 300 and 600 individuals were tortured, tried and executed, accused of being members of a notorious and heretical band of robbers (who rode across the night sky on the backs of goats). But were they devil-worshipping hoodlums or the product of the economic and class pressures of their time? Regardless they have made their way into legend on TV and the printed page. (PDF link, from the European Ghost Literary Project) [more inside]
posted by jrb223 at 9:22 AM PST - 19 comments

When I was a kid I just drew these things in margins of my notes for math

ROM hacking, the act of modifying the "cartridge" data for a video game played in an emulator, has been covered before (and before). What you may not know is that intrepid hackers have been at work on more modern systems, producing a wide array of new takes on old classics. New worlds for Mario to explore (also, also, also). A new adventure for Link. Goldeneye levels that are a bit... different. A whole new universe of classes and challenges in Final Fantasy Tactics (gameplay). And HD texture packs for games that haven't aged as well as others. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 9:06 AM PST - 23 comments

What's scarier than a ventriloquist dummy? A ventriloquist dummy's mugshot.

Vaudeville Ventriloquist Dummy Portraits. Don't miss the mugshot of The Great Lester, who is noted to have "a wonderful way with the ladies."
posted by scody at 8:50 AM PST - 31 comments


To support his new album, Amon Tobin and an army of designers have created an ambitious live digital experience that is currently traveling the world. [more inside]
posted by functionequalsform at 8:42 AM PST - 17 comments

Explore the F & P Daguerreotype, The Cincinnati Panorama of 1848

In September of 1848, Charles Fontayne and William Porter took a series of 8 panoramic views of Cincinnati by the then still new daguerreian process, capturing a little more than two miles of the riverfront. In skilled hands, daguerreotype can capture an amazing resolution, so much that modern technology is required to view the full image. In 2007, the 1848 Cincinnati panorama was restored, utilizing a stereo microscope, finding so much detail that the eight 6 ½ inch by 8 ¼ inch plates could be enlarged up to 170 by 20 feet without losing clarity. In May of this year, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County put the daguerreotype plates on display with touch-screen computer displays to see the fine details. But if you can't make it to Cincinnati, the library has a new website where you can navigate and zoom in for a glimpse of life along the riverfront. [via mefi projects] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:12 AM PST - 29 comments

How to Undress a Victorian Lady in Your Next Historical Romance

Deanne Gist helps romance novel authors learn the mechanics of Victorian era women's underwear.
posted by reenum at 6:48 AM PST - 95 comments

A is for Victory.

Olly Moss designed two Captain America prints in the style of WWII propaganda. So did Eric Tan and Tyler Stout (less propaganda, more movie poster). All commissioned by Mondo. The Tyler Stout prints will be given away at the Captain America Comic-Con screening.
posted by mean cheez at 6:37 AM PST - 42 comments

Words, words, words.

10 Unconventional Bookstores For Your Browsing Pleasure. Includes The Secret Bookstore and The Book Barge but not The Ateneo Grand Splendid.
posted by Saxon Kane at 5:38 AM PST - 22 comments

Monday - snap; Tuesday - snap. etc.

Nini Baseema is taking one self portrait a day - for a year. Sometimes more than one.
posted by adamvasco at 4:17 AM PST - 61 comments

July 18

Heaven On Their Minds

The opening song from Jesus Christ Superstar has been sung by many people. Here are some of them. [more inside]
posted by Addlepated at 10:01 PM PST - 80 comments

Oh nah nah, what's my name?

Pop star Rihanna gives good Meet & Greet [more inside]
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:44 PM PST - 132 comments

Austin Tappan Wright's "Islandia"

Cult books come and cult books go - that's part of what it means to be a cult book. A few keep reappearing, however. They get discovered over and over by successive waves of admirers. After the third or fourth reappearance, the suspicion begins to arise that this isn't a cult book, after all. It's a masterpiece with problems. Islandia is such a book. - Noel Perrin, "The Best of All Imaginary Islands" [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 7:40 PM PST - 15 comments

"I decided that forgiveness was not enough."

"I decided I had to do something to save this person’s life. That killing someone in Dallas is not an answer for what happened on Sept. 11." Rais Bhuiyan petitions the state of Texas to stay the execution of a white supremacist who shot him and murdered two others in a hate-motivated crime.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:04 PM PST - 87 comments

We are all a bunch of Winnie the Poohs

Jed Perl reviews "Thomas Kinkade: The Artist in the Mall"
posted by vidur at 7:00 PM PST - 65 comments

A Brief Survey Of The Short Story

What with Borders going belly-up and no new books being written ever, avid readers fear that their chief means of edification and entertainment may no longer be viable. Fear not, and look backwards. Over at The Guardian, Chris Power has spent the last few years telling giving us A Brief Survey Of The Short Story. A lot of my favourites are there, and I am discovering others I am keen to try. What about you?
posted by tumid dahlia at 6:44 PM PST - 23 comments

i + e = δ

144 sites for online education. Categories include science and health, business and money, history and culture, law, computer science, mathematics, and languages. [more inside]
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 5:53 PM PST - 19 comments

The Cinefamily

If you were a fan of shows like Night Flight, then The Cinefamily theatre blog is for you: Michael Jackson: Unauthorized! :: THOR: Bootleg Version :: Fassbinder soundtracks :: Sci-Fi Cover Art Hall of Fame :: The Last Unicorn :: Echoes From A Somber Empire :: Thrashin' ('80s skateboard) :: Mondo Wizard Battles :: Afterschool Specials :: Negativland :: Found Animation :: The Great Ecstasy of the Woodcarver Steiner + How Much Wood Would a Woodchuck Chuck :: Burt Reynolds Supercut :: Tex Avery vs. Jay Ward :: Dumb Names In Movies! :: North Korea-A-Rama (The Red Chapel) :: Mondo Logo 1 + 2 :: Chuck Norris
posted by puny human at 2:56 PM PST - 6 comments

Borders liquidating remaning stores

Borders is liquidating as soon as this Friday, closing all 399 stores, ending 40 years of business, and 11,000 jobs. Brought down by e-books and Amazon. Scenes From A Borders Liquidation Sale. Map of (soon to be vacant) Borders stores.
posted by stbalbach at 2:21 PM PST - 310 comments

Six Degrees of Matthew Sweet

Matthew Sweet stays busy! Long before releasing the acclaimed album Girlfriend in 1991, he recorded a song with REM's Michael Stipe, joined one incarnation of Anton Fier’s alt-supergroup Golden Palominos, and appeared on Lloyd Cole’s eponymous solo debut. Later on he formed The Thorns with Pete Droge and Shawn Mullins, recorded two albums of covers with Susanna Hoffs, and got interviewed by Tears For Fears’ Curt Smith. He also makes ceramic cats.
posted by bassomatic at 2:19 PM PST - 47 comments


Marissa is an adorable toddler with a rare and terrible medical problem: West Syndrome, a.k.a. infantile spasms. Her father Mike has been active in the online Special Needs community, chronicling her story for years now at his blog Marissa's Bunny. Last year, his readers raised almost $30,000 through a ChipIn fundraiser to offset the costs of Marissa's neurosurgery. As a sort of 'thank you', and with the help of matching funds from his employers, Mike offered to give away and/or raffle 40 iPads to the special needs kids of his blogger friends, to be used as assistive technology devices for many of their non-verbal kids. This follows on the heels of several other iPad raffles he's held in the past year.

Guess what happened next. The Special Needs Parenting blog community is on the case: Ellen Seidman (and her commenters), Rob Rummel-Hudson, Sarah and Joyce Hely, Shannon Des Roches Rosa and others are putting together the pieces right now.
(previously on MetaFilter: the unravelings of Kaycee Nicole, JT LeRoy, Kodee Kennings, Alexa DiCarlo, and Amina Arraf)
posted by Asparagirl at 2:01 PM PST - 179 comments

Why s/he stays

"If there's one thing I've learned from working in an emergency room, it's that people are terrible liars. Maybe I only think that because the good liars don't get caught? [...] And a lie I hear almost every day in the emergency room is "I fell down the stairs. My partner loves me. They would never hurt me." [...] For a long time, I just couldn't understand this. We'd get the victim in a private room locked away from the abuser, and they'd sit there with bruises or wounds or even broken bones, in a safe place surrounded by people who wanted to help them, and they'd tell us, often through tears... "I fell down the stairs." It drove me nuts. It made me furious at the victims. Why did they do this? Did they like pain? Did they want to get murdered? Were they just unbelievably stupid? Why the HOLY LIVING FUCK would someone choose to protect and return to a partner who just broke their arm? [more inside]
posted by fiercecupcake at 1:59 PM PST - 74 comments

News Redux

Digital news is broken. Actually, news itself is broken. Almost all news organizations have abandoned reporting in favor of editorial; have cultivated reader opinion in place of responsibility; and have traded ethical standards for misdirection and whatever consensus defines as forgivable. And this is before you even lay eyes on what passes for news design on a monitor or device screen these days. Suggestions for clarifying online news sites from Andy Rutledge. [more inside]
posted by netbros at 1:48 PM PST - 19 comments

"Blue is black with green, like the sea."

"We certainly cannot follow the example of Odysseus and, going down to Hades, tempt with a bowl of blood a representative sample of native speakers to label particular areas of the standard Munsell color continuum ..."
David Wharton's Latin Color Bibliography collects quotations from ancient literature and modern research on how languages classify colors, and tries to work out the meanings of color words in classical Latin. [more inside]
posted by nangar at 1:00 PM PST - 14 comments

Just when things seem the same and the whole scene is lame I come and reign with the unexplained

John Mayer visits Berklee to speak to students and offer insight on learning music theory, making music, listening to music, and the temptation to publish yourself. [more inside]
posted by cashman at 11:16 AM PST - 60 comments

Then you wouldn't have to say "QED", 'cause I'd already know

A thread full of proofs without words at MathOverflow and quite a lot more of them courtesy of Google Books.
posted by Wolfdog at 9:59 AM PST - 22 comments

What's an 'ethical source' for gelatin?

A possible new 'ethical' source for popular food-additive gelatin: humans. Vegan reaction not yet forthcoming. [more inside]
posted by malusmoriendumest at 9:50 AM PST - 99 comments

Suffragette City

‘In 1912, Scotland Yard detectives bought their first camera, to covertly photograph suffragettes. The pictures were compiled into ID sheets for officers on the ground.’
posted by The Whelk at 9:33 AM PST - 50 comments

Underrated Movies

Notes on 124 underappreciated films. [more inside]
posted by Iridic at 9:32 AM PST - 127 comments

Japan wins Woman's World Cup

Congratulations to Japan!!! All that screaming practice paid off. Spirits are lifted. [more inside]
posted by josher71 at 9:26 AM PST - 81 comments

from hoodoo to voodoo

The hoodoo lady and the hoodoo man had a voodoo child. Uh huh, yes, yes, voodoo voodoo.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:36 AM PST - 32 comments

Clowns and the Spanish Civil War

The Last Circus , latest film by vastly under-exposed Spanish director Alex de la Iglesia, will see a limited U.S. theatrical release by Magnet on August 12th. The director's previous work includes surreal apocalypse fantasy (El Dia de la Bestia) and black humor (El Crimen Ferpecto). NSFW trailer here.
posted by mean cheez at 6:27 AM PST - 14 comments

"By setting up on a canal boat, we hope to promote a less hurried and harried lifestyle of idle pleasures, cups of tea, conversation, culture..."

In the U.K., sometimes the bookstore comes to you— on a barge. The Book Barge: a floating bookshop on a canal boat (57' Cruiser Stern) in Lichfield, Staffordshire. [The Guardian]
posted by Fizz at 4:35 AM PST - 23 comments

"No pasarán!"

75 Yeas ago today 18 July was the start of the Spanish Civil War. In many cities the people went A Las Baricadas.
In Catalunya this produced the greatest experiment in worker self management the western world has seen and also gave rise to the movement Mujeres Libres whose work is still very much to the fore in present day Latin America.
The story of the Mujeres Libres is shown in the 3 part film Women of the Spanish Revolution I; II; III
For first person recollections here is Living Utopia. Anarchism in Spain which consists of 30 interviews with survivors of the 1936-1939 Spanish Revolution.
1936 when The people rise like a gale.
posted by adamvasco at 12:51 AM PST - 21 comments

July 17

Russian neo-indie-disco from Pompeya

Pompeya is a band that is hard to describe, especially if you go by their videos and sound. For example, if you started with Power (Simple Symmetry & Lipelis Remix), you might think it's an act from the the late eighties, complete with break dancing and dated fashions. If you first came across the Barbarella Chisinau Teaser, you might imagine that they're something from the early 1990s, or a new band goofing with vintage video. And then they drop Power II, which could be some kids playing neo-disco akin to the US band VHS or Beta (wiki). But wait! Check out Cheenese (NSFW moment of nudity 2:58 to 3:05), and you think they might be professional musicians with a sharp-looking video. In fact, Pompeya is a mix of various things: they're four young Russian guys who play indie-disco. [more details after the break] [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:05 PM PST - 22 comments

Even back then, people wanted to shoot their banker

One August morning in 1826, two men went for a walk in the Scottish countryside. Only one of them came back alive. Timewatch tells the story of two men who fought to the death with pistols: one a respected merchant, reluctantly provoked into an unwanted duel; the other a professional soldier, steeped in military tradition. The soldier also happened to be the merchant’s bank manager. It would end with the death of one man and mark the demise of a 600-year-old ritual. [more inside]
posted by Pirate-Bartender-Zombie-Monkey at 9:45 PM PST - 49 comments

The Best of the Web.

He Gotta Donk [SLYT] [May be NSFW]
posted by schmod at 8:17 PM PST - 27 comments

Double-entry bookkeeping: Now used by Al Qaeda

"... Al Qaeda was forcing local affiliates (or at least its Iraqi one) to sustain themselves financially. If local groups must make their own money, governments and counterterror operatives can use Al Qaeda’s need to raise money - often using illicit means and pressure against local citizens - against the organization. That kind of counterterrorism would look less like war, and more like careful police work against what amounts to a criminal syndicate or mafia." [Inside Al Qaeda’s hard drives]
posted by vidur at 6:30 PM PST - 46 comments

Why I will never pursue cheating again

A computer scientist teaching at a business school decides to go after students who cheat in his class. He’s come to the conclusion that it’s simply not worth his time. [via]
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 5:59 PM PST - 239 comments

Tell me this is not Spinal Tap-worthy.

"A giant gust of wind picked up a tarp and garbage from across the field and flung it toward the audience and lifted the whole stage — where Cheap Trick had been playing — and almost like a convertible in a car, just folded it backwards in the same direction." The main stage at the Ottawa Bluesfest has collapsed in a sudden storm, during a performance by Cheap Trick. Injuries are reported to be minor. The annual festival brings thousands of music fans into downtown Ottawa. Photos of the aftermath.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 5:51 PM PST - 43 comments

Dawn orbits Vesta

Dawn spacecraft now orbits asteroid Vesta - After almost 4 years of space travel, the Dawn spacecraft successfully entered orbit around Vesta, an Arizona sized rock. Dawn tweets, takes pictures, and there is a Vesta Fiesta party to celebrate. After hanging out at Vesta for a year, Dawn will head off to visit the Ceres asteroid next, a three year trip. Amazing achievement of engineering, innovation and accuracy.
posted by Argyle at 5:49 PM PST - 41 comments

The Chain Of Coincidence

One day in 1984 character actor Stephen Tobolowsky (Groundhog Day, the original, unaired pilot of Buffy The Vampire Slayer) was walking down the street when Jonathan Demme pulled up and asked if he wanted to see a movie he was finishing. Tobolowsky accepted: taking his girlfriend Beth Henley, they went to the Academy Linwood Dunn Theatre to watch the rough cut of the movie, Stop Making Sense. The audience in the otherwise empty theatre consisted of Tobolowsky, Henley, and Demme, along with members of Talking Heads, including David Byrne and Tina Weymouth. Later, Byrne passed Tobolowsky on his bike and asked if he wanted to work on a new movie. Interest sparked again, and during the ensuing collaboration Tobolowsky shared his past experience of psychic phenomena. Inspired, Byrne went on to write Radio Head. The song was heard by Thom Yorke and became the name of his band. All of this is a true story, based on puzzling evidence. [more inside]
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 5:47 PM PST - 46 comments

Dora Hall

A tribute to Dora Hall was recently presented at Everything is Festival by Mr. Neil Hamburger. "DORA HALL was the undisputed queen of vanity entertainment. Dora's husband was Leo Hulseman, the founder of the immensely successful Solo Cup Company, and a man who was quite happy to delve into Solo's apparently bottomless coffers to finance dozens of record releases by his wife, all of which were given away free of charge with packages of plastic cups and plates during the 1960's. Not content with her 'success' in the record business, in the 1970's and 1980's Dora branched out with several full-blown Solo-financed TV specials designed to make her a star--despite the fact that she was an elderly grandmother with limited show business experience." -- TV Heaven (as quoted by Everything is Terrible, supra.) [more inside]
posted by Countess Elena at 4:35 PM PST - 10 comments

He gives CPR to a fish and gets sad when it dies.

Cowboy Henk is an extremely stupid, surreal, and funny comic strip from Belgium. Mostly SFW but occasionally very NSFW. [more inside]
posted by codacorolla at 3:38 PM PST - 26 comments

Where the fuck is this?

Did you ever find a picture on the internet and thought „Where is this ?“. We can help you find this place! [sic] (via)
posted by desjardins at 1:30 PM PST - 25 comments

Los 33: Chilean miners face up to a strange new world

Los 33: Chilean miners face up to a strange new world "The rescue of 33 miners from Chile's San José mine after 69 days trapped underground was a triumph shared with the whole world. But the transition back to normality is proving difficult for both the men and their families."
posted by nooneyouknow at 12:44 PM PST - 21 comments

Whodunit with the paperknife in the library?

Someone has been leaving mysterious miniature paper sculptures in various locations in Scotland. They seem to all be tied to Scottish author Ian Rankin, twitter, and the magic of the written word. [more inside]
posted by sarahnade at 11:42 AM PST - 21 comments

Bee beards and bee body coverings: Don't try this at home

Want to make your own bee beard? This video from the Clovermead Bee Competition described how (put a queen bee in a little cage, add bees). See images of bee beards as contestants try to build beards that weigh the most. Why stop there when you can get bees to cover your entire body, as they do in a competition in China?
posted by Wolfster at 11:30 AM PST - 24 comments

The Day Lady Died

July 17th 1959: "Billie Holiday died in a New York City hospital from cirrhosis of the liver after years of alcohol abuse, aged 43 (while under arrest for heroin possession, with police officers stationed at the door to her room). In the final years of her life, she had been progressively swindled out of her earnings, and she died with $0.70 in the bank." Still, the world remembers her for her music, her voice that changed lives. Some of her best: Nice Work If You Can Get It, Fine and Mellow, Strange Fruit, I'll Be Seeing You, Good Morning Heartache, Summertime, I'm A Fool to Want You, As Time Goes By, Solitude, Come Rain or Come Shine and The Man I Love. [more inside]
posted by pleasebekind at 9:50 AM PST - 30 comments

"Gambiarra refers to an unlikely mend, an unthinkable coupling, a solution so raw and transparent that it illustrates the problem at hand instead of eliminating it."

In Brazil, "gambiarra" is the art of improvising makeshift repairs - spontaneously solving the problem at hand with whatever is in hand. Wikipedia Brazil has a bit more on the topic and how it extends to architecture and programming. Gambilogia is an arts group exploring this DIY aesthetic. Interestingly, there's lots of discussion around gambiarra. Personally, I find the original quick fixes more compelling (examples at bottom of the article).
posted by fake at 9:25 AM PST - 39 comments

Sending Them Off With A Smile

Hiring young women to strip at a funeral ceremony might strike some as scandalous, but for many in Taiwan it is an important part of the grieving process.
posted by empath at 8:21 AM PST - 43 comments

mama put my guns in the ground -- I can't use them anymore

...after enrolling in public school and moving to Montana — a predominantly white state, albeit one with a decidedly hippie-ish vibe — Lamb and Lynx decided they simply no longer believed what they’d been taught. Prussian Blue, five years later. Previously, previously.
posted by gerryblog at 8:02 AM PST - 102 comments

Unfortunately there's this dirty great sea monster in the way.

Aardman Animation has released the trailer for their upcoming feature: The Pirates! Band Of Misfits.
posted by hippybear at 7:21 AM PST - 48 comments


Untris... not heaven or hell, but a strange parallel universe... beyond the reaches of time...
posted by lemuring at 7:04 AM PST - 25 comments

Worth a thousand words

Visual.ly, the most daring start-up in visualization after the previous demise of Swivel and other "social visualization" ventures.(*) has infographics which explain typography, dollar bills. and evolution of the geek.
posted by twoleftfeet at 6:18 AM PST - 20 comments

The Rape of Men

"I don't want to tell him," says Jean Paul. "I fear he will say: 'Now, my brother is not a man.'" A report on a harrowing but little known tool of war - Male rape.
posted by AzzaMcKazza at 3:48 AM PST - 46 comments

Where Humans Fear to Tread

Futuristic Circular Flying Object: It zips through the air, glides smoothly around corners, and negotiates staircases with ease, emitting a soft hum. (slyt) [more inside]
posted by troll at 2:20 AM PST - 29 comments

phone's not working today

It took the photographer Donald Weber more than five years to make his way inside a Ukrainian police interrogation room.

For months, Weber showed up every morning at police headquarters, where he sat on a wooden bench in a drab hallway, waiting to ask the suspects if they’d let him witness their interrogations. When they agreed, he sat and watched from his chair in a small room as a damaged light fixture cast spider-web patterns on the wall. [more inside]
posted by plexi at 1:39 AM PST - 23 comments

July 16

The grooviest frontier.

Space: 1975!
posted by loquacious at 11:39 PM PST - 43 comments

Does it really make you fat?

Health News Review rates and reviews medical reporting in US media. [more inside]
posted by nangar at 10:17 PM PST - 1 comment

How To Be A Writer

How To Be A Writer
posted by Trurl at 7:47 PM PST - 105 comments

The undisputed master of overing

Jim Babb first appeared in the ARG scene as Tim Scribbles, roommate to a robot in search of love. More recently, he's been honing his skills with a family-friendly production called Socks Inc., where the only barriers to entry are an old sock, a webcam, and some imagination. Now what happens when he applies his unique blend of quirky humor and unself-conscious style to the real world in a heartfelt proposal to his partner in crime? Julie, will you marry me? [more inside]
posted by SpaceBass at 5:52 PM PST - 5 comments

it's just a matter of faith!

Attention all units, please respond to Central and Broadway, reference a large crowd. It's a war on drugs.
Just Say No: a music video featuring former Albuquerque sheriff Darren White. On vocals.
posted by NoraReed at 5:17 PM PST - 27 comments

No longer in motion.

Inside RIM: An exclusive look at the rise and fall of the company that made smartphones smart. 'Research In Motion is in the midst of a major transition in every sense of the word. Publicly, the company is portraying a very defensive image — one that is very dismissive, as if RIM is profitable and class-leading, and the media is out of line to criticize its business, as are investors. Internally, however, there’s a different story to be told. It’s a story filled with attitude, cockiness, heated arguments among the executive team and Co-CEOs, and paranoia.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 5:01 PM PST - 70 comments

Kittens on DJ Decks

Short, sweet, chill. Three kittens take over some turntables. SLYouTube.
posted by sweetkid at 3:54 PM PST - 40 comments

Jebediah Kerman is unfazed by his impending fiery death.

Fancy yourself a rocket scientist? Want to build rockets and shoot little green guys into space? Comfortable with your rocket flying apart and exploding into a thousand fiery pieces? Able to press the space bar? Try Kerbal Space Program. [more inside]
posted by Lord_Pall at 1:38 PM PST - 26 comments

The Unemployed Worker's New Friend

Job searchers have begun outsourcing the process of applying for jobs to companies in India. The results have been mixed.
posted by reenum at 1:00 PM PST - 35 comments

Agony and Ivory

Agony and Ivory. "Highly emotional and completely guileless, elephants mourn their dead—and across Africa, they are grieving daily as demand from China’s 'suddenly wealthy' has driven the price of ivory to $700 a pound or more. With tens of thousands of elephants being slaughtered each year for their tusks, raising the specter of an 'extinction vortex,' Alex Shoumatoff travels from Kenya to Seattle to Guangzhou, China, to expose those who are guilty in the massacre—and recognize those who are determined to stop it."
posted by homunculus at 12:34 PM PST - 24 comments

Surviving Survival

The Summer 2011 issue of Stanford Medicine Magazine is about "Surviving Survival": The Woman Who Fell To Earth / Khmer Rouge on Trial / A Kid Again / Her Stroke of Insight / RxErcise [more inside]
posted by zarq at 11:42 AM PST - 11 comments

"The thing I regret most that I cannot change -- except by what I do now -- was drafting the death penalty initiative."

"The way I look at it, what I created can and may already have resulted in the [execution] of an innocent person." Donald Heller is partly responsible for turning California's death row into the most populous and expensive in the nation. So why'd the lawyer known as "Mad Dog" change his mind?
posted by scody at 11:33 AM PST - 24 comments

Evidence of things unseen

Ghostly images remain on windows after bird strikes. No blood, no gore.
posted by rtha at 11:26 AM PST - 32 comments

If you walk without rhythm…

Insane, inscrutable, and angelic, Montreal artist Grimes's vocal melodies float on a barely subdued monster beat that threatens to uproot buildings and put holes in the ground. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte at 10:19 AM PST - 19 comments

The Final Image

The final images. Can you guess the movies? (answers at the bottom)
posted by quiet coyote at 8:57 AM PST - 46 comments

Law for Damaging the State of Israel

Last Monday, the Israeli Knesset (legislature) passed the Law for Prevention of Damage to State of Israel through Boycott (Q&A), which, among other things, makes it a civil offense for residents of Israel to advocate economic boycotts against Israel or any geographic region under its administration, including the Occupied Territories. This means that while individual Israelis may themselves refuse to buy products made in the settlements, they run the risk of being sued if they publicly call upon others to do likewise. [more inside]
posted by iati at 8:50 AM PST - 59 comments


Five minutes into the future - a blog where Astro Zombie posts things he finds that appear to come from the not-so-distant future. Check out New Tombstones Adorable Cars Modular Toasters Augmented Reality Shopping and Smart Lamposts [via mefi projects]
posted by The Whelk at 8:23 AM PST - 28 comments

We're All Born Superstars

In Defense of Pop Music -- New York Magazine takes a look at the rise of pop and dance music and the death of rock in the charts.
posted by empath at 7:47 AM PST - 110 comments

Like sand through the hourglass...

Going to the beach this weekend? This is what you'll be standing on.
posted by nathancaswell at 6:43 AM PST - 27 comments

Where did you record this?

Renowned Jazz guitarist Pat Metheny, having recently fooled around with a giant robot orchestra (previously), and well known for his views on reinterpreting musical classics (also previously), has released a new acoustic album in which he covers songs that have influenced him. They're tasteful. Hear him explain what it's all about.
posted by Silverdragonanon at 6:40 AM PST - 56 comments

I'll take the Double Dip to go

There may be $2 trillion sitting on the balance sheets of American corporations globally, but firms show no signs of wanting to spend it in order to hire workers at home, however much Washington might hope they will.

Time magazine outlines five common destructive myths about how to stimulate U.S. Growth.
posted by AndrewKemendo at 6:24 AM PST - 42 comments

Google+ multiplies anger by subtracting pseudonyms

Not so fast, internetpseudonym, on signing up for that Google+ account. Turns out you can only use your real name or face account suspension. Users don't like it and some are worried about safety, but Google isn't budging: "To help fight spam and prevent fake profiles, use the name your friends, family or co-workers usually call you...You can use pseudonyms to upload videos in YouTube or post to Blogger."
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:16 AM PST - 200 comments

Hair today...

Le Figaro has a great article with photographs of the journey of human hair obtained as offerings to the gods by pilgrims in Tirupati to the beauty salons of New York and the heads of such as Lady Gaga and Beyonce. Since its in French, here's Mother Jones covering the same in English. A Spaniard in London does a photo essay while exporters show you a flowchart of the entire process. Highly valued and in short supply, remy hair, as it is known, is very different from the stuff you find being used in pesticides, pizza base and deer repellent (warning: Fox News link).
posted by infini at 4:15 AM PST - 7 comments

July 15

Realistic MG-1 Synthesizer by Moog Music

The Realistic MG-1 Synthesizer with 'polyphony', built by Moog Music in 1981 for the home market and sold through Radio Shack stores for $499. Despite its toy-like appearance, its tones are quite serviceable. Sound demos: Classic Moog filter tones. 1 2. A thorough demonstration of each knob, switch and slider, 1 2 3 4 5, filtering audio, and with a sequencer.
posted by Ardiril at 9:16 PM PST - 25 comments

Lee Krasnow's puzzles

Lee Krasnow makes puzzles.
posted by Trurl at 7:06 PM PST - 9 comments

I will kill the first person who mentions Ender's Game

Fleet Commander . That is all.
posted by anigbrowl at 5:29 PM PST - 48 comments

Mark Twain's Advice To Little Girls

[Mark Twain] did not squat down to be heard and understood by children, but asked them to stand on their tiptoes—to absorb the kind of language and humor suitable for adults.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 5:13 PM PST - 21 comments

Konichiwa, bitches. It's the MFCEO Kenneth Powers.

Former baseball player and legend in his own mind becomes the new CEO of K-Swiss and takes it to a whole nubba lebel. (YT; NSFW) [more inside]
posted by fuse theorem at 5:10 PM PST - 40 comments

Sunday in the Park with Ponies

Apparently there is a Sondheim fan on the My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic staff. The Art of the Dress versus Putting it Together (starts at 4:55) from Sunday in the Park with George (or Barbra Streisand's arrangement). At the Gala versus Ever After from Into the Woods. Ponies previously: 1 2 3
posted by Gordafarin at 4:07 PM PST - 37 comments

Just like the shiba inu puppies, but underwater

Ocean Voyager shark cam: As a tie-in with the upcoming Shark Week, Georgia Aquarium has set up a live webcam of the world's largest shark tank through August 7.
posted by rewil at 3:33 PM PST - 8 comments

Healthy food desert?

Better access to supermarkets — long touted as a way to curb obesity in low-income neighborhoods — doesn't improve people's diets, according to new research. 'The study, which tracked thousands of people in several large cities for 15 years, found that people didn't eat more fruits and vegetables when they had supermarkets available in their neighborhoods. Instead, income — and proximity to fast-food restaurants — were the strongest factors in food choice.' [more inside]
posted by VikingSword at 3:13 PM PST - 168 comments

so many mosquitos!

This is just a fangirl with a camera. Being an amateur. Making a blog. Making a statement. Saying that Harry Potter changed her life. And THIS is the remix. (DLYT)
posted by roger ackroyd at 2:27 PM PST - 92 comments

#crashtags: Why add space-economical hashtags to near-unlimited Google+ posts?

#crashtags. Why, MeFi’s own Adrian Holovaty asks, would one need to add hashtags – designed for space-economical Twitter, where every character counts – to Google+, which has orders of magnitude more space to express oneself? And should Twitter really be influencing our online behaviour thus, given “how limiting (and, frankly, silly) Twitter is”? [more inside]
posted by joeclark at 1:06 PM PST - 98 comments


This weekend, the busiest freeway in the United States, Interstate 405 in Los Angeles, will close for bridge demolition to allow for a northbound carpool lane. The stretch handles 375,000 cars on a typical day and up to 500,000 on the weekends. This event has been dubbed "Carmageddon." [more inside]
posted by Mister Fabulous at 12:19 PM PST - 207 comments

The Brain on Trial.

The Brain on Trial. Advances in brain science are calling into question the volition behind many criminal acts. A leading neuroscientist describes how the foundations of our criminal-justice system are beginning to crumble, and proposes a new way forward for law and order.
"We may someday find that many types of bad behavior have a basic biological explanation—as has happened with schizophrenia, epilepsy, depression, and mania."
[more inside]
posted by Eideteker at 11:43 AM PST - 99 comments

It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life, for lipdubbing

"Feeling Good" lipdub, by a cast of senior citizens (via MetaChat) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 10:00 AM PST - 35 comments

Things I Learned While Driving Through Utah

Attention well-dressed gentlemen: Looking for affordable business attire, suitable for tropical climates, extended bike rides, and living out of a suitcase? Want to buy a high-quality suit for under $200? Looking for wash-and-wear polyester ties? Dress shirts for twenty bucks? Shop at one of the online boutiques that outfit Mormon missionaries and all this can be yours. (Mormon ladies' wear also available.)
posted by AngerBoy at 9:45 AM PST - 104 comments

Less success than we had hoped for.

"It signals what’s wrong with the so-called charter school community. Somebody who doesn’t deserve a charter gets a charter. Somebody who doesn’t deserve a building gets a building. And then somebody who doesn’t care about the communities can turn their head and walk away." Venture capitalist and blended learning 'evangelist' Tom Vander Ark committed to opening several charter schools in New York City and Newark, NJ, stringed the Department of Education along until the last possible moment, and then walked away (NYT link).
posted by Nomyte at 9:33 AM PST - 48 comments

Tiny worlds, tiny bottles, tiny dinosaurs

Akinobu Izumi puts tiny worlds, and tiny dinosaurs, in tiny bottles.
posted by IvoShandor at 8:33 AM PST - 18 comments

And now, a very special public service announcement from Captain Tight Pants...

Two "Nerd PSA's": Kaley Cuoco addresses Slave Leia Fatigue. Nathan Fillion on Swamp Ass. (Both links YouTube, Via)
posted by zarq at 8:17 AM PST - 110 comments

The Secret Bookstore

The Secret Bookstore [more inside]
posted by stbalbach at 7:48 AM PST - 25 comments

or would people start to ask why the wealth of knowledge and culture was being enclosed within restrictive laws, when “another world is possible” beyond the regime of artificial scarcity?

Given the material abundance made possible by the replicator, how would it be possible to maintain a system based on money, profit, and class power? Towards an Anti-Star Trek. [more inside]
posted by gerryblog at 7:45 AM PST - 146 comments

The bigger the lie, the more people will believe it.

Why do people believe something even after it's been proven false? A new study confirms that "the effect of misinformation on memory and reasoning cannot be completely eliminated even after it's been corrected." [more inside]
posted by zooropa at 6:53 AM PST - 73 comments

Tue Dae Fadda!

Tarol Hunt, author of webcomic Goblins, was recently informed that the house he and his family rent had been allowed to fall into foreclosure by its owners, forcing him to make a choice: raise thousands of dollars to buy the home, or be evicted. On July 10th, Thunt appealed to his fans as a last resort: Raise $30,000 by August 20th, as part of his Tempts Fate spin-off, and Tempts Fate will survive the most fiendish, dangerous adventure he's ever faced. His fans raised the money in four days.
posted by Silverdragonanon at 6:29 AM PST - 34 comments

To the Batcave?

Batman: Delivrance a french video (with subtitles) about the return of Batman from retirement featuring special guest: Wolverine.
posted by blue_beetle at 5:47 AM PST - 17 comments

He keeps his eye on the bad people

Captain Awesoooome! SLVimeo; 8.12; "Captain Awesome is about to save the day once again, when an upset stomach threatens to ruin it all. A story of a superhero’s race against time to save his image or humanity before it all goes down the drain!" Tip: bonus joke at 5.51. [more inside]
posted by bwg at 4:55 AM PST - 2 comments

A Geek's Journal - 1976

A Geek's Journal - 1976. What if there had been blogs in 1976? I would most definitely have had one and this might well have been it. This blog is based on my actual journal kept in 1976. Activities of a Geek in 1976 included: getting that week's comic books, going to the movies, attending a Paul McCartney and Wings concert, school pictures, and those freaks in Algebra class.
posted by marxchivist at 3:48 AM PST - 28 comments

Robots of Brixton by Kibwe Tavares

Rioting robots on the streets of Brixton, a gorgeous sci-fi/architecture/animation short film by architecture graduate Kibwe Tavares. [more inside]
posted by Foci for Analysis at 2:01 AM PST - 26 comments

July 14

Drew Struzan brings Frankenstein to life.

Drew Struzan , the artist responsible for countless iconic movie posters of the 70s and 80s, is returning from his 2008 retirement to release a Frankenstein print for Mondo, in association with the Alamo Drafthouse. This is in celebration of the news that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences will now be archiving Mondo posters alongside those officially commissioned by studios. Drew Struzan previously. Other Mondo screenprints.
posted by mean cheez at 8:43 PM PST - 9 comments

No, not that one...

More recently, Wilson has drawn fan and media attention for his thick, black beard and eccentric behavior. There's a relatively strange baseball player called Brian Wilson. [more inside]
posted by SomaSoda at 7:09 PM PST - 63 comments

Maine Coon boil

Maine Coon boil (SLYT)
posted by Trurl at 7:04 PM PST - 99 comments

Sean Bean Death Reel

Everyone knows that Sean Bean is, in fact, the balls. In addition to being Boromir, Ned Stark, and 006, the man has had unnumerable classic roles, yet has flown mostly under the radar for much of his career. But if you need a tough but good looking dude to glower menacingly and hurt people, either for the angels or the devils, then Sean Bean is your man. The downside is that, well, he dies a lot. A LOT.
posted by Slap*Happy at 7:03 PM PST - 82 comments

Google News Badges

Everybody likes earning badges. It's what built scouting and what drives the Khan Academy. Now Google has introduced "Google News Badges". Is this a benevolent attempt to get more people to be aware of what's going on in the world, or is something deeper and/or darker going on? It's an unusual move, whatever the reason.
posted by strangeguitars at 6:28 PM PST - 41 comments

The Summer of Punk, The Future of Wrestling (Trending and Tumbling)

The recent passing of Randy Savage stirred nostalgia in wrestling fans from the '80s. Then WWE wrestler CM Punk garnered mainstream media coverage with a blistering promo that ran roughshod over the corporate image that the WWE had been carefully cultivating for the last decade. The unprecedented use of social media in his feud with John Cena (he sent both indie wrestler (and close friend) Colt Cabana and WWE ice cream bars trending on Twitter) has not only given wrestling the biggest mainstream boost since the Attitude Era, it has also shined a light on writers who love the fake fighting but aren't the stereotype of a wrestling fan -- The Masked Man (now unmasked) has been writing excellent pieces for a while, but The Dugout's Brandon Stroud now posts The Best and Worst of Raw, and a host of Tumblrs (such as Styles Clash) follow the sport (with Fair to Flair as an example of a collaborative blog). [more inside]
posted by solistrato at 5:45 PM PST - 40 comments

"I'm packing your extra pair of shoes, and your angry eyes just in case."

For more than 50 years, Mr. Potato Head toys have been a hit among American children - and increasingly, collectors. This collector's website has everything Potato Headian, whether you want to see 2008 Presidential Candidates holding Mr P or the "psychedelic" Mr. Potato Bug, Bird, and Fish from the early 1970s or read about how it almost became a forgotten cereal premium instead of a "funny face kit" for unused fruits and vegetables. Then there are the pictures from 2002 when Rhode Island distributed 5 foot fiberglass Mr. Potato Head statues which were decorated by artists through the state. There's more. A lot more.
posted by julen at 4:38 PM PST - 21 comments

Saving a Humpback Whale

Saving Valentina. A group of five friends out boating on the Sea of Cortez discovered a young humpback whale entangled in fishing net and possibly near death. After about an hour of hard work they were able to free the whale, who proceeded to put on an amazing show for her rescuers. [Via]
posted by homunculus at 4:01 PM PST - 43 comments

Pork City

Christopher Walken reads Three Little Pigs on a British TV series in 1993.
posted by gman at 3:59 PM PST - 28 comments

I have to show you all my IDs

Fantasy Island: The Strange Tale of Alleged Fraudster Pearlasia Gamboa
posted by vidur at 3:59 PM PST - 4 comments

Rick Perry's Army of God

"If they simply professed unusual beliefs, movement leaders wouldn’t be remarkable. But what makes the New Apostolic Reformation movement so potent is its growing fascination with infiltrating politics and government. The new prophets and apostles believe Christians—certain Christians—are destined to not just take 'dominion' over government, but stealthily climb to the commanding heights of what they term the 'Seven Mountains' of society, including the media and the arts and entertainment world. They believe they’re intended to lord over it all. As a first step, they’re leading an 'army of God' to commandeer civilian government. In Rick Perry, they may have found their vessel. And the interest appears to be mutual." Previously. Via.
posted by brundlefly at 3:29 PM PST - 134 comments

Guitar String Oscillations via iPhone

Guitar String Oscillations via iPhone - your physics lesson for the day.
posted by Ardiril at 3:22 PM PST - 15 comments

Reading as Therapy

Why do people read fiction anyway? -to deal with personal problems Jon Baskin wrote a review of a book by Timothy Aubry titled: Reading as Therapy Oprah, Amazon, and The Rise of Therapeutic Fiction.
posted by naight at 2:35 PM PST - 37 comments

Metatalk post in 6 months: Where's that post about how we forget stuff we know is available online somewhere?

A lot of things make us dumb but for seriously this time you guys, the availability of information on the internet is making us not bother to remember information. We aren't even that great at remembering where the information is that we didn't bother to remember. Instead we just remember that it can be found someplace or other. [more inside]
posted by cashman at 2:13 PM PST - 74 comments

A Unique Business Opportunity.

The Craig's List Reverse Programmer Troll
posted by empath at 2:13 PM PST - 37 comments

Happy Birthday Woody Guthrie

Today would have been Woody Guthrie's ...99th birthday, and the beginning of his centennial year.
"Woody is just Woody. Thousands of people do not know he has any other name. He is just a voice and a guitar. He sings the songs of a people and I suspect that he is, in a way, that people. Harsh voiced and nasal, his guitar hanging like a tire iron on a rusty rim, there is nothing sweet about Woody, and there is nothing sweet about the songs he sings. But there is something more important for those who will listen. There is the will of a people to endure and fight against oppression. I think we call this the American spirit." - John Steinbeck
For fans, there's a webpage to organize events and such around his centennial. And here's something for those that don't know his work, and those that want to remember:

This Land Is Your Land
Biggest Thing Man Has Ever Done
Talking Dustbowl Blues
So long it's been good to know you
posted by Stagger Lee at 12:50 PM PST - 48 comments

Coastal Defence Object Institute

"Welcome to CDOI. This website is interested in the armorunit blocks of breakwater. Shape and the situation are taken in the photograph and researched." [more inside]
posted by alby at 12:44 PM PST - 11 comments

Willie Soon, Denier-for-hire

Willie Soon Ph.D. is a member of the Solar, Stellar, and Planetary Sciences (SSP) group at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics. He is also the go to guy for cloaking climate denial in "science". A regular blogger at conservative web sites, he can be counted on to provide anti-global warming talking points such as here and here. He has also been linked to conservative funding sources and recently spoke at Heartland Institute's "denial fest". His scientific work has been the target of some dispute. Recently, RealClimate was able to access his publically accessible website where he has posted papers, emails, calculations and reviews going back to 2003. There seems to be evidence that Soon has been playing a little loose with the data
posted by Michael_H at 12:41 PM PST - 19 comments

ComMIDIcations Breakdown

[1999Filter] MIDI Led ZeppelinMIDI RushMID9 BeatlesMIDI YesMIDI Iron Maiden[previously]
posted by not_on_display at 12:31 PM PST - 24 comments

A picture worth a thousand (space)ships

Father and son "bookend" the first and last shuttle launch with this photo, which is a thing of beauty. The son, Chris Bray, described it as "[t]he picture we waited 30 years to complete." In an interview, Bray said that they almost didn't make it due to delayed flights and other problems. Quite a lot of comments in his Flickr page (where the photo was originally posted) like the changing technology, comparison of film vs digital photography, keeping a close father-son bond over the years, and whether he was wearing the same shirt or not. (previously and previously)
posted by pleasebekind at 12:27 PM PST - 26 comments

ALEC Exposed

ALEC Exposed is a wiki site set up by The Center for Media and Democracy which posts and chronicles leaked documents including more than 800 model bills drafted and approved by corporations during ALEC meetings. The documents have been analyzed and marked-up for clarity. Journalists along with the general public are invited to download the documents and sift through the bills in order to help map the connections back to their own state legislation and legislators. [more inside]
posted by stagewhisper at 11:53 AM PST - 22 comments

A Life, Visualised

Every year since 2005, Nicholas Feltron has logged the progress of his life – his meals, locations, conversations, pets, travel, everything – in minute and exacting detail, summarizing his activities in what he calls "Annual Reports" featuring beautiful infographics.
Last year, Feltron's father died. Rather than talking about himself for the 2010 Annual Report, Feltron memorialized the entire life of his father.
[more inside]
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 11:53 AM PST - 16 comments


This is Zombotron. You can scavenge for items and kill the undead in this Flash game. Your less-advanced mechanical brethren may even shoot you on site, as they are only programmed to detect motion. Welcome to Zombotron.
posted by Smart Dalek at 10:26 AM PST - 29 comments

Rocket Man: Up and at them!

King of the Rocket Men was the first appearance of the "atomic powered rocket flying suit" from Republic Pictures. The characters changed but the suit remained for four action-packed serials. In 1949, King of the Rocket Men starts out with a bang, or rather a series of bangs (YT playlist), as scientists die in accidents, but science and fists save the day. Civilian researcher Commando Cody is the next hero to don the rocket pack in 1952, for 12 chapters of Radar Men from the Moon. But when Zombies of the Stratosphere attack that same year, Commando Cody is out sick (or something), so Larry Martin steps up to duke it out in the rocket suit (though thin on the "zombies", the serial starred Leonard Nemoy as a Martian). Commando Cody returned in 1953 to face the evil alien "Ruler" in Commando Cody: Sky Marshal of the Universe (vid 1, vid 2). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:49 AM PST - 17 comments

Twitter/Flickr usage maps of the world

Ever wondered where Flickr and Twitter are used the most? Eric Fischer (previously, previouslier, previousliest) has created a new set of maps comparing geotagged Flickr images to geotagged Twitter posts.
posted by spitefulcrow at 9:27 AM PST - 23 comments

Clear Eyes, Full Hearts...

I remember I went to NBC, and there were about 10 people in the room. [Kevin Reilly] and I looked at each other, and he said, "What do you want to do?" I said, "I want to build up this all-American quarterback, this hero. This wonderful, beautiful kid with his entire future ahead of him. His biggest decision in life was whether he was going to take a full ride to UT or Notre Dame. He's got the hot girlfriend. He's got the loving parents. And he's going to break his neck in the first game. We're going to create this iconic American hero, and we're going to demolish him." An oral history of Friday Night Lights.
posted by Pants McCracky at 9:05 AM PST - 128 comments

That's a Bannin'

Use more than 250GB of data in a month twice within the first six months of your contract, and you will be banned for year. A first hand account, per Andre Vrignaud. Wired's analysis. Is Comcast simply trying to provide a better quality of service for its customers by regulating traffic? Or, as some suggest, is Comcast making moves to protect its core video cable interests in the face of growing media streaming services, like hulu and Netflix? Critics have speculated about the motives of this move in 2008, when the cap was enacted. Additionally, some, including Vrignaud, have criticized Comcast for removing essential household services, akin to water and electricity. It may seem a bit overstated, until you consider that these days the internet is used for more than convenience and entertainment, but also for full-time work from home and as a phone replacement. Should shutting it off be this easy? Ongoing discussion here.
posted by SpacemanStix at 8:47 AM PST - 117 comments

Spotify in the U.S. - What will be its impact and is it worth the price??

"Two years after first announcing it, Spotify is finally coming to the US. The service will be launched later today, at 8 in the morning EST. The company has signed a deal with the fourth and final music label just hours before launch and the service will be virtually identical to the European one, except for the pricing which, while keeping the numbers, is switching pounds for dollars. " [more inside]
posted by incandissonance at 7:56 AM PST - 124 comments


Weekend At Kermie's: The Muppets' Strange Life After Death. Elizabeth Stevens asks:
What if, in 1990, instead of recasting Kermit—something that had been done to Mickey and Bugs Bunny before him—the Muppets had continued on Kermit-less, as "The Simpsons" did after Phil Hartman died. Recall Susan’s words on "Seasame Street" about Mr. Hooper in 1982: “Big Bird, when people die, they don’t come back.” Let’s say Robin showed up saying his uncle Kermit had passed away? Or, if that was too dark for Disney, what if Kermit had left show business to go off to start a family with Piggy? Someone else could lead the gang of weirdoes.

It would’ve made more artistic sense than what happened
posted by zarq at 7:29 AM PST - 65 comments

How "don't use the B-word" applies in lattice-structure management.

No hierarchy, no supervisors, no managers, no bosses. How does the philosophy that "authoritarians cannot impose commitments, only commands" translate into a successful company? [more inside]
posted by hypotheticole at 7:20 AM PST - 19 comments

The Hole

The CIA's Secret Sites in Somalia. Jeremy Scahill at The Nation reports on a CIA facility at Mogadishu's international airport used for a "counterterrorism training program for Somali intelligence agents and operatives," as well as a secret prison "buried in the basement of Somalia's National Security Agency" where "some of the prisoners have been snatched off the streets of Kenya and rendered by plane to Mogadishu." [more inside]
posted by lullaby at 6:23 AM PST - 39 comments


A cappella "Du Hast" performed by Viva Vox Choir of Belgrade, Serbia. SLYT
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:16 AM PST - 26 comments

Curiously useful things, courtesy of a breath mint

22 Manly Ways to Reuse an Altoids Tin
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 5:52 AM PST - 57 comments

Activism should not have to be anti-scientific.

Greenpeace activists, following through on Greenpeace's opposition of Genetically Modified Organisms, have dismayed Australian scientists by raiding a CSIRO experimental farm in Canberra and destroying the station's entire experimental crop of genetically modified wheat.
posted by Silverdragonanon at 5:33 AM PST - 130 comments


Did you know that cats have a secret administrator's mode? SLYT. But worth it. (VIA BOING BOING)
posted by JHarris at 5:23 AM PST - 69 comments

Half-Life – Singularity Collapse: A short Half-Life fan film

Half-Life – Singularity Collapse, Another fan film based off of the Half-Life Universe, with plentiful special effects and action. Interesting how people continue to make films and be inspired by the world of a game from several years ago.
posted by Kaatridge at 4:30 AM PST - 26 comments

BFI Film Archive

The British Film Institute has a youtube channel with rare footage going back over 100 years, covering many aspects of British life. Highlights include: 'Solarflares Burn For You' (1973) (featuring a soundtrack by Robert Wyatt); Rush Hour, Waterloo Station (1970); London Bridge (1926); Productivity Primer (1964); Today in Britain (1964); Snow (1963); Holiday (1957).
posted by ClanvidHorse at 4:20 AM PST - 7 comments

When the King Saved God

"A culture that does not possess this common store of image and allegory will be a perilously thin one. To seek restlessly to update it or make it “relevant” is to miss the point, like yearning for a hip-hop Shakespeare." -Christopher Hitchens stands up for the King James Bible
posted by beisny at 3:08 AM PST - 61 comments

No rod and reel needed

Carp Attack! SLYT, 1.13.
posted by bwg at 2:19 AM PST - 39 comments

Vermont 1, Rest of USA 0

Maybe evolution shouldn't be taught in schools, but what does Miss USA think about math?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:23 AM PST - 48 comments

Pain is the curse of consciousness.

Bio Apocalypse (PDF) is a 94 page graphic novel full of body horror, nightmare fuel, and heavy handed symbolism. It tells the story of an Akira-like organism that grows and devours the Earth. Drawn on notepaper with lots of red crayons and purportedly written by a Something Awful Goon when he was in 6th grade, Bio Apocalypse has gathered a small cult following and his inspired a partial video reading.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 1:17 AM PST - 22 comments

If you're looking for fun, you don't need a reason...

For all you fans of Karl Stefanovic - and we know you're out there - he's been at it again. This time, he had some help (SLYT)
posted by Pinback at 12:22 AM PST - 12 comments


Cat-Scan.com is one of the strangest sites I've seen in some time. I have no idea how these people got their cats wedged into their scanners, or why.
posted by Argyle at 12:17 AM PST - 248 comments

July 13

Two turntables and a microphone (microphone sold separately)

The Wheels Of Steel: Turntables in your browser (a web-based DJ prototype) Scott Schiller has created turntables in your browser, and has written an extensive blog post about how it works. [more inside]
posted by narwhal bacon at 9:23 PM PST - 31 comments

The blurfl and its ilk

If you like woodworking and/or learning about vintage tools and their history you will, no doubt, enjoy The blurfl FAQ. There IS NO "previous" discussion of the blurfl on MeFi.
posted by spock at 8:09 PM PST - 16 comments

Manning Chat Logs

Manning-Lamo Chat Logs Revealed. "A little more than a year ago, Wired.com published excerpts from instant messenger chats between accused WikiLeaks source Bradley Manning and Adrian Lamo, the ex-hacker in whom he confided and who reported him to the authorities. It’s now time to reveal the previously unpublished portions of these conversations." [more inside]
posted by homunculus at 2:24 PM PST - 343 comments

Sometimes state flags are just so Vermont.

Sometimes state flags have aspirations of being limited edition vinyl release indie rock album covers.
posted by dersins at 2:06 PM PST - 108 comments

Short and Sweet

It seems that there is increasing frustration with the current state of email leading some to look for more technical solutions, such as Shortmail - an email client/social networking tool which attempts to redefine what its creators see as a broken relationship with email described on their blog as a "river of trash." , while others to turn to less technological solutions to lessen their email burden. [more inside]
posted by SpaceWarp13 at 1:51 PM PST - 40 comments

Prince Paul’s 10 Favorite Sample Flips

Prince Paul’s 10 Favorite Sample Flips [more inside]
posted by AceRock at 1:37 PM PST - 21 comments


A collection of newspaper headlines from "The Simpsons" (SLYT)
posted by Hey Dean Yeager! at 1:05 PM PST - 38 comments

Villainous, a tower conquest flash game

Tired of tower defense games? Tired of always playing the good guy? Try playing Villainous, a tower conquest flash game.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 12:51 PM PST - 14 comments

Minnesota to stop selling MillerCoors beer

Because of a regulatory beer labeling registration snafu, Minnesota beer supplies will soon be down 38%. Another stunning example of inefficient state bureaucracy getting in the way of one's alcohol consumption.
posted by Kokopuff at 12:49 PM PST - 103 comments


Apocalypse Now ... and Then - the timeline of Weird Al Yankovic
posted by mannequito at 12:40 PM PST - 16 comments

Why Come To Shanghai? For the cheap music, obviously.

I Come To Shanghai is an indie psych-pop outfit helmed by Sam Frigard and Robert Ashley. Robert best is known for hosting, producing, and editing the podcast A Life Well Wasted, often cited as "This American Life for videogames." (previously) Their new mini-LP, Eternal Life Vol. 1, brings the band in a darker, more serious direction. It's steaming on SoundCloud and available for pay what you want download from their website. Their debut self-titled album is poppier and more song-oriented. It's also up for pay what you want download. Watch the video for first-album cut Pass The Time here (warning: video is almost distractingly crazy).
posted by JimBennett at 12:35 PM PST - 4 comments

I'd like to table this post on Americanisms.

"I accept that sometimes American phrases have a vigour and vivacity. A relative of mine told me recently he went to a business meeting chaired by a Californian woman who wanted everyone to speak frankly. It was 'open kimono'. How's that for a vivid expression?" The BBC explores Americanisms, but they're not the first: The Telegraph, Daily Mail, and the Economist have also weighed in on the debate. (Somewhat previously.)
posted by reductiondesign at 12:09 PM PST - 219 comments

Three blasts in Mumbai

Mumbai rocked by three blasts in terrorist attack: 21 dead, over 140 injured.
posted by dunkadunc at 12:05 PM PST - 54 comments

This is a Time Waster

Got some free time? Looking for something mildly amusing? Predator and Prey Arrows. Click and move the mouse. Enjoy!
posted by rodmandirect at 11:42 AM PST - 24 comments

"Warren G, what are you doing here?!"

"Warren G, what are you doing here?!" ... "What does it look like I'm doing?!" ... Legendary recording artist, Warren G, offers a little help to a man struggling to satisfy his woman. "Are you my waiter?" ... "Nah, I'm the Regulator." (MLYT) (via)
posted by mrgrimm at 10:53 AM PST - 14 comments

The Boys are Back in Heaven

The Boys Are Back in Heaven. SLVimeo. An excellent mashup depicting Phil Lynnot of Thin Lizzy fronting the Pixies.
posted by anazgnos at 9:41 AM PST - 25 comments

Go Outside by Cults, a music video

This year's hot summer jam, Go Outside by Cults, finally has a video. It shows members of the band digitally inserted into footage of Jim Jones' famous religious cult, People's Temple. [more inside]
posted by The Devil Tesla at 9:36 AM PST - 148 comments

Lolita Storm: bubblegum and hardcore hybrid

They came on strong, "sounding like The Shangri-Las flying through an electrical storm while having a riot in a speed garage club," but only survived for an album, an EP, and a hand full of singles. They were Lolita Storm, a trio of female singers (Romy Medina, Nhung Napalm, and Spex), backed by a guy on the noise-makers (Mr Jimmy Too-Bad), recording and touring from 1998 to 2003. Their brief life totaled around an hour of recorded music, available from YouTube user Darkcore2008 (lyrics often NSFW). [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 9:05 AM PST - 11 comments

Evil Dead 1 part 3

Bruce Campbell confirms on Twitter that a remake of Evil Dead is in the works. [more inside]
posted by Hoopo at 8:57 AM PST - 78 comments

"Not enough people to devour and sate their endless, all-consuming hunger for death?"

Sad Baby Monsters are sad. Maybe they need hugs? Or perhaps some fresh prey... [more inside]
posted by quiet coyote at 8:48 AM PST - 13 comments


Epic War! [SLYT]
posted by Fizz at 8:44 AM PST - 13 comments

Rain Delays not depicted

The final game of Nadal and Federer's Epic 2008 Wimbledon Final, in book form. [more inside]
posted by sweetkid at 7:50 AM PST - 15 comments

Breaking Bad returns

Here's why Breaking Bad beats Mad Men, The Sopranos, and The Wire (Grantland). Here's an interview with Bryan Cranston on The AV Club. Here's Bryan Cranston singing about Rolling Stone.
posted by Cantdosleepy at 6:59 AM PST - 287 comments

Central Park, adventure playgrounds and Katamari Damacy

"Better a broken bone than a broken spirit". So said the appropriately-named Lady Allen of Hurtwood, pioneer of adventure playgrounds - play spaces which sacrificed a little security in the interests of imagination and creativity. Her work on adventure playgrounds - along with the sight of young Londoners playing in the bombed-out sites of post-Blitz London - inspired a young Richard Dattner, a New York architect now probably best-known for the Bronx Public Library Center. [more inside]
posted by running order squabble fest at 5:58 AM PST - 63 comments

Like a person with dignity and respect

School of French Kissing for Dogs {Warning: Lots and Lots of Humans Making out with Dogs} [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue at 3:19 AM PST - 55 comments


He has won more Wimbledon singles titles than Martina Navratilova, Pete Sampras, Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe combined, and yet you have probably never heard of him. Because you don't care about croquet. [more inside]
posted by twoleftfeet at 3:08 AM PST - 34 comments

The pivot from the quantitative finding to the speculative explanation

Everyone knows that correlation doesn't imply causation, but researchers invariably need to come up with plausible explanations (i.e., models) for the patterns found in their data. However, very different models can "explain" the same pattern. The books The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries are Failing and What Can Be Done About It and Wars, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places by Oxford economist Paul Collier try to explain why some countries have remained poor using data from econometric studies. In his very interesting review (PDF), Mike McGovern, a political anthropologist at Yale, critiques the types of explanations found in popular economics books. Statistician Andrew Gelman has further thoughts on descriptive statistics, causal inference, and story time.
posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 12:27 AM PST - 59 comments

Wood Tape

Wood Tape. As told by Scott Nesin, of GamesByEmail. Drawings by Guy Nesin.
posted by SpacemanStix at 12:23 AM PST - 30 comments

July 12

"O.K. Everybody take a valium!"

Dangerous When Provoked Pt. I | II | III | IV | V is a documentary about Canadian editorial cartoonist and Order of Canada recipient Terry Mosher, also known by his pen name Aislin.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:57 PM PST - 4 comments

Computer RTFM, Conquers Civilization.

Computer Gets 33% Better at Playing Civilization, By Reading the Manual: An MIT experiment has apparently succeeded in getting a computer to learn from human-readable, English-language text, the computer extrapolating useful strategies and tactics from an instruction manual so effectively as to dramatically increase its victory ratio in the Sid Meier universe. Via io9.
posted by darth_tedious at 11:47 PM PST - 64 comments

Just the facts, ma'am

Audio Noir offers a continuous stream of classic radio crime dramas, including Johnny Dollar, Broadway Is My Beat, and Dragnet.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:47 PM PST - 14 comments

Public Relations vs. Journalism

PR Industry Fills Vacuum Left by Shrinking Newsrooms - "You would go into these hearings and there would be more PR people representing these big players than there were reporters, sometimes by a factor of two or three" ..it's getting tougher to know when a storyline originates with a self-interested party producing its own story.
posted by thisisdrew at 10:47 PM PST - 43 comments

Achilles’ bane full wrath resound, O Goddesse, that imposd

A book recommendation by Mr. O'Brian (previously); the Chapman translation of the Iliad. The same book that guided William Shakespear in writing Troilus and Cressida. [more inside]
posted by Binliner at 8:50 PM PST - 22 comments

The 1967 International and Universal Exposition

Still, Expo is regarded as the best world's fair ever. Its success changed the world's view of Canada, and more importantly, it changed the way Canadians viewed themselves. For the first time the country basked in the pride and the glory of its talents and accomplishments. A nation had come of age. (previously) [more inside]
posted by Trurl at 8:20 PM PST - 42 comments


Well basically, it's men in thong underpants dancing. And they have eagle heads. And... OK, I don't know either, but I can't stop watching it. SLYT. NSFW, life, sanity.
posted by louche mustachio at 8:10 PM PST - 68 comments

Making-Of sicherstes Fahrradschloss

The way to make a very secure lock for your bike. Auf Deutsch, but the working of the device is clear. Webpage for the invention, Google Translated, apparently with a parts list.
posted by hippybear at 8:07 PM PST - 46 comments

Oh, It's On!

30 years ago this summer Ronald Reagan was president, Raiders of the Lost Ark hit the theaters, and Nintendo launched Donkey Kong. [more inside]
posted by FfejL at 6:57 PM PST - 39 comments

Every metaphor starts out as a wild beast

"Writing about metaphor is dancing with your conceptual clothes off, the innards of your language exposed by equipment more powerful than anything operated by the TSA. Still, one would be a rabbit not to do it in a world where metaphor is now top dog, at least among revived rhetorical devices with philosophical appeal." [What's a Metaphor For?]
posted by vidur at 6:38 PM PST - 19 comments

Your/My Unfinished Novel

OK, so you've partly written a novel, but you're having trouble finishing the damn thing. What to do? Summon stamina, press on, and be proud of your literary success? Or, post your abandonment for all the world to see! Ladies and gentlemen, a place for your unfini--
posted by anothermug at 5:09 PM PST - 39 comments

It's Time to Play the Music

Muppets: The Green Album is being released on August 23rd and the new movie on November 23rd, but if you need your fix, here's a taste: My Morning Jacket covering "Our World" from Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas. [more inside]
posted by Muddler at 3:27 PM PST - 29 comments

'South California' for 51st state?

Jeff Stone, a politician from Riverside County, wants 13 conservative Southern California counties to secede and become the country's 51st state.
posted by reenum at 3:14 PM PST - 153 comments

[T]he parties have repeatedly shown that they are immune to reason. Consequently, in my decision, I have tried ridicule as a last resort."

An Ontario Family Court judge was not very happy with the parties involved in a divorce case [PDF] before him.
posted by Chrysostom at 3:01 PM PST - 84 comments

"Colonial Africa" themed wedding

An English couple weds in a Colonial Africa themed wedding in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa.
posted by illenion at 2:56 PM PST - 209 comments

Eight flugelhorns, one alto baritone and twenty-seven C melody tubas.

Wanna Buy a Record?

A 1951 promotional film in which Mel Blanc takes Billy May on a tour of the Capitol Records studio on Melrose (followed by the somewhat less glamorous Scranton pressing plant) in an attempt to convince him that 85 cents is not too much to charge for a record. [SLYT] [more inside]
posted by mintcake! at 2:53 PM PST - 13 comments

Betty Ford

Elizabeth Ann Bloomer Warren Ford--model, dancer, feminist, founder of one of the best-known substance abuse recovery centers in the world, and former First Lady of the United States--died Friday, July 8, at the age of 93. [more inside]
posted by Halloween Jack at 2:38 PM PST - 24 comments

Fine Feynman Fare

Physicist Freeman Dyson reviews two new books about Richard Feynman, one about the science and one in graphic novel form.

He never showed the slightest resentment when I published some of his ideas before he did. He told me that he avoided disputes about priority in science by following a simple rule: "Always give the bastards more credit than they deserve." I have followed this rule myself. I find it remarkably effective for avoiding quarrels and making friends. A generous sharing of credit is the quickest way to build a healthy scientific community.

(previously, previously, and probably in the future, but not predictably so.
posted by cogneuro at 1:40 PM PST - 20 comments

Surely This...

Getting Away with Torture. "Overwhelming evidence of torture by the Bush administration obliges President Barack Obama to order a criminal investigation into allegations of detainee abuse authorized by former President George W. Bush and other senior officials, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The Obama administration has failed to meet US obligations under the Convention against Torture to investigate acts of torture and other ill-treatment of detainees." [more inside]
posted by ZenMasterThis at 12:07 PM PST - 63 comments

Applied Narrativium 101

Plot Device - A man obtains a device that makes life more like the movies (SLVP)
posted by The Whelk at 12:00 PM PST - 16 comments

I am not a number, I am a free woman!

A shot-by-shot remake of the opening sequence of The Prisoner is the video the first song of seventeen planned tunes by Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling, all based on episodes of the cult spy-fi series. You can compare the video and the sequence from the series by screenshot or with a picture-in-picture video. The Prisoner, previously, previouslier, still previouslier, previousliest.
posted by immlass at 11:43 AM PST - 54 comments

‘Ike ‘ia no ka loea i ke kuahu

"I knew that by assembling seven different people and forcing them to live together, the show would have great philosophical implications". Television genius Sherwood Schwartz, dies at 94.
posted by mazola at 11:10 AM PST - 81 comments

Tour de Crash

When American Tyler Farrar symbolically claimed America's first stage win on the 4th of July, he dedicated his achievement to the memory of his best friend, Wouter Weylandt, whose tragic crash just two months ago left many questioning whether modern cycling had become too dangerous for today's professional riders (previously). They may have found their answer in Sunday's Stage 9 of what is now being dubbed by many the "Tour de Crash". [more inside]
posted by misha at 10:53 AM PST - 81 comments

Fear the Future

Metro 2033: Multimedia Online Fiction. Cruel but beautiful Russian shooter Metro 2033 and its upcoming sequel, Metro: Last Light are arguably two of the most polished games to come out of a country better known for the buggy, idiosyncratic work of GSC Game World and Ice-Pick Lodge. Less well-known is the games' source material, a self-published, soundtrack-backed online novel of the same name (warning: Russian).
posted by Tubalcain at 10:30 AM PST - 18 comments

Words and Music

Words and Music. The staff at Pitchfork list their favorite books about music. [more inside]
posted by rocket88 at 9:56 AM PST - 56 comments

No, not Jamie Lee Curtis

Freshly hatched at London's Natural History Museum - a gynandromorph butterfly. [more inside]
posted by FatherDagon at 9:49 AM PST - 31 comments

The first planetarium in the western hemisphere is now the most technologically advanced

Adler Planetarium, founded in 1930, was the first planetarium in the western hemisphere, and is a US national monument. Until recently, the planetarium was run with a Zeiss Projector (Mark IV) that was around 40 years old. The proposed upgrade was controversial in the 2008 presidential elections, as $3 million in federal funding was earmarked for the $14 million project. In the end, the high-tech projection system was funded. The result: the world's most advanced planetarium system, with a 64 megapixel resolution display, provided by 20 individually modified projectors, 42 GPUs and run with the help of 84 servers. And it can be controlled from an iPad or X-Box controller.
posted by filthy light thief at 8:54 AM PST - 29 comments

"The Third Way of COIN: Defeating the Taliban in Sangin"

100 Firefights, Three Weeks: Inside Afghanistan's Most Insane Fight
"In its first three weeks in Afghanistan’s Sangin district, the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines got into more than 100 firefights and sustained 62 casualties. The insurgents managed to negate the Marines’ night-vision gear, and rendered their traditional close-combat tactics useless. Things got so bad, the 3/5’s superior officers even suggested pulling their troops back. That didn’t happen. Instead, the 3/5 went after the militants, hard. When the 3/5 came home, they told counterinsurgency historian Mark Moyar all about their deeply unconventional approach to what was already an unconventional war."
This is an excerpt in Wired of Moyar’s 74-page after action report. (pdf) [more inside]
posted by zarq at 8:52 AM PST - 21 comments

"there's crazy, ther's legitimately insane, and then somewhere way past that is Jimmy Olsen"

The 10 Most Insane Jimmy Olsen Moments of All Time!
posted by Fizz at 8:39 AM PST - 60 comments

It tastes like burning!

Sunscreen: Are you really covered? from WebMD. Debunking the most common myths about sunscreen. [more inside]
posted by blue_beetle at 7:49 AM PST - 79 comments

I bet the made-for-tv movie will star Kevin Costner

Welcome to Quartzite, Arizona, where nothing really happens. Oh, except for this. [more inside]
posted by jadayne at 7:42 AM PST - 62 comments

A Pain in the Asana

What becomes of your yoga when you are forbidden to do asana? "My chiropractor gave me the ultimate prescription: no asana. Since my practice inspires my teaching, I cut back on my teaching as well, only offering one super gentle community class and working with a few private students. (...) I’ve been in a place of inquiry: What is my practice? What does asana mean to me? What is yoga?"
posted by amusem at 7:38 AM PST - 65 comments

Dog and Deco

Dog and Deco. My name is Pickles McConchie. I’m a 15 year old Art Deco and camera loving Terrier from Scotland. I like to travel the country with my bitch and pose in front of art deco factories and industrial buildings from the 1920s, 30s and 40s, as well as other twentieth century architectural gems.
posted by The Discredited Ape at 6:34 AM PST - 12 comments

Where we won't go anymore.

VR Panorama of the Space Shuttle Discovery's flight deck
posted by bitmage at 6:29 AM PST - 30 comments

Orda Cave Awareness Project

Russian divers working for the Orda Cave Awareness Project have revealed stunning images of the world's longest underwater cave.
posted by bwg at 5:34 AM PST - 37 comments

July 11

Monster A Go Go!

Monster Shack is a b-movie review site that also contains an extensive collection of classic movie posters, old news reel reviews and an Atari shrine.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:29 PM PST - 15 comments

It's not boxing

Fives is a handball sport of British origin. One of the major types, Eton fives, is played in an area which is a replica of one of the bays of Eton College Chapel. Eton fives is exclusively a doubles game, but other versions, such as Rugby fives, can be played as singles. Eton fives is commonly played by public school boys in Britain, but is very popular with ordinary people in Nigeria.
posted by winna at 10:13 PM PST - 25 comments

"...nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself..."

Public interests will be harmed absent requiring defendants to make available unencrypted contents in circumstances like these. Failing to compel Ms. Fricosu amounts to a concession to her and potential criminals (be it in child exploitation, national security, terrorism, financial crimes or drug trafficking cases) that encrypting all inculpatory digital evidence will serve to defeat the efforts of law enforcement officers to obtain such evidence through judicially authorized search warrants, and thus make their prosecution impossible.

The "if you were innocent, you'd have nothing to hide" argument rears its head, in a big way. [more inside]
posted by fifthrider at 9:24 PM PST - 210 comments

Carbon trading for Australia

Clean Energy Future . Australia has embarked on a tradeable carbon permit system, covering about 60% of emissions, beginning on 1 July 2012, and mixing in substantial progressive tax reform, putting a line under a very long debate on this matter indeed.
posted by wilful at 9:05 PM PST - 99 comments

Edward Tufte's Slopegraphs

What’s interesting is that over 20 years before sparklines came on the scene, Tufte developed a different type of data visualization that didn’t fare nearly as well. To date, in fact, I’ve only been able to find three examples of it, and even they aren’t completely in line with his vision.
Edward Tufte's slopegraphs.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 8:51 PM PST - 16 comments

Michelangelo Antonioni's "Chung Kuo"

[Michelangelo Antonioni's Chung Kuo] as a documentary film was one which was draped with fascination for both filmmakers as well as an audience, rather than championing anti-whatever sentiments from either side of the world. Not having seen many movies, either features, shorts or documentaries made during the Cultural Revolution era or about that era in question (propaganda included), I think this Antonioni film has more than made its mark as a definitive documentary that anyone curious about the life of the time, would find it a gem to sit through.
posted by Trurl at 7:53 PM PST - 3 comments

Have you had your daily recommended dosage of cute today?

Kid's reaction to meeting a gay couple for the first time. (slyt)
posted by phunniemee at 7:22 PM PST - 99 comments

Sublime Freeclimb

"The man in the saffron robe accompanying Catherine to her starting point is a witch doctor who's modernized. Under his robe he's got a jazz trumpet. He's going to blow a magic cadenza or two to bless her on her way"

...one of the ancient burial chambers of the Tellen Pygmies; although some of the skeletons she notes are more recent than that, the sort of place for a failed freestyle climber, perhaps."

Catherine Destivelle's gravity-defying freeclimb of Mali's Bandyagara (SLYT)
posted by obscurator at 7:15 PM PST - 36 comments

Must Tell Metafilter

Gospel singer Herman Cain's album "Sunday Morning" is now available online. In the fifteen years since the album was originally released the singer and baptist preacher has also found success in the business world, broadcasting, and politics.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 5:33 PM PST - 11 comments

Stux to be you

In-depth pieces in Vanity Fair and Wired detail the structure and impact of the Stuxnet worm, and what it means for the future of cybersecurity. (Previously)
posted by Horace Rumpole at 5:15 PM PST - 43 comments

Here, kitty, kitty. Or maybe not.

Cats are apparently the culprits behind several avian extinctions worldwide. So, are cats bad for the environment?
posted by peripathetic at 5:00 PM PST - 132 comments

Debate in Toronto over presence of religion (and sexism?) in public schools

Debate in Toronto over presence of religion (and sexism?) in public schools Toronto's Valley Park Middle School exposes flaws of religious accommodation? A photo from the Toronto Star of Muslim Middle school student's praying during school sets off Canadian news journalists and religous groups. [more inside]
posted by devonia at 3:43 PM PST - 109 comments

"Don't steal from *this* show! That's like taking pants from a hobo!"

After Kad & Olivier sign off and the Satisfaction production logo fades, viewing audiences are oftentimes treated to a cold open of an empty talk show set... one that quickly becomes the impromptu dance floor for a shameless Frenchman making an absolute giddy fool of himself while lip-syncing pop songs alongside a menagerie of... wait, *what*?! That's right. The Late Late Show's Craig Ferguson appears to have a not-so-secret French admirer -- one who's not above ripping off both his opening titles and his signature dance sequences (including the iconic animal puppets): "ABC" by The Jackson 5, "Flashdance" by Irene Cara, "On the Floor" by Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull, "Waka Waka" by Shakira, "Men in Black" by Will Smith, "Let's All Chant" by the Michael Zager Band, "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" by Wham!, "It's Raining Men" by The Weather Girls, and "Vive Le Vent (Jingle Bells)" by Tino Rossi. Luckily, Ferguson's sense of showmanship is more prodigious than litigious -- he responded to Arthur's "homáge" by booking a pair of translatlantic crossover shows, with Arthur visiting LA that week and Ferguson flying out to Paris just last month. Video of both shows (plus lots more) inside! [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi at 3:42 PM PST - 12 comments

Jazz Age Chicago

Scott Newman's Jazz Age Chicago is a guide to every major movie theater, department store, sporting arena, amusement park, grand hotel and dance hall that operated in the Windy City during the 1920s.
posted by Iridic at 2:54 PM PST - 13 comments

Epic Photography

The last Space Shuttle launch, as seen from a students' Space Balloon with the help of Quest For Stars (caution: auto playing YouTube video) and NASA. That is all.
posted by dry white toast at 1:31 PM PST - 20 comments

Golf on Saturn's moons

How about a game of golf on Saturn's moons?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 1:27 PM PST - 13 comments

The Menace Within

The participants in the Stanford Prison Experiment are revisited 40 years after their experience.
posted by reenum at 1:05 PM PST - 55 comments

"A censor pronouncing a ban, whether on an obscene spectacle or a derisive imitation, is like a man trying to stop his penis from standing up." - J. M. Coetzee

If we have, at the back of our minds, a stereotype of the censor or the censor type, it is probably of some nondescript male bureaucrat who comes to work punctually at 8:30 in the morning, locks his office door behind him, and spends the day going through piles of books, underlining dirty passages in red ink and stamping pass or fail on the cover, or else pouring over strips of film with scissors at the ready, ready to snip out images of breasts and bums, who, when the clock at last strikes 5:00, emerges into the daylight, catches the bus home to some anonymous suburb and spends the evening watching reruns of sitcoms on television before donning his pajamas and falling into a dreamless sleep. Or if we're thinking not of full time censors, people who dedicate their professional lives to the business of censoring, but of part time censors, people who like to do a bit of censoring on the side, then we might imagine that retired teachers, clergymen and moral busybodies in general would be attracted to the craft. But the records of the South African system don't quite fit the stereotype.
- J. M. Coetzee, Nobel laureate author, speaks at his alma mater University of Texas Austin about his experiences with censorship in his native South Africa during apartheid. Coetzee mentions this essay he wrote about his time at UT Austin and a book he wrote on censorship, here's the preface to it.
posted by Kattullus at 10:59 AM PST - 12 comments

Sluggish growth is no mystery: No one has any money

The housing bubble was the last chance most middle-class families saw for grasping the brass ring. Working hard didn’t pay off. Investing in the stock market was a sucker’s bet. But the housing bubble allowed middle-class families to dream again and more importantly to keep spending as if they were getting a big fat raise every year. - How the Bubble Destroyed the Middle Class
posted by Slap*Happy at 10:21 AM PST - 199 comments


"FINALLY, we get some evidence that the Ghost x DOOM project actually exists." [more inside]
posted by functionequalsform at 10:17 AM PST - 17 comments

The Age of Mechanical Reproduction

The Age of Mechanical Reproduction by Paul Ford. When it comes to IVF, in-vitro fertilization, nothing is normal. Your world is upside-down. Your doctor compliments your wife on her monkeys. Then, when every dollar and exertion has gone toward a single hour of hope, it begins to snow.
posted by foggy out there now at 9:57 AM PST - 93 comments

Some say I'm suicidal with a sense of humor.

"I've had enough; maybe I'll be seeing you around. Make it a great party." Ten years ago today, Dutch rock'n'roll junkie Herman Brood stepped out of this world. Brood was The Netherlands' only legitimate rock and roll icon, as well as an accomplished visual artist, and the country's most famous hard drug user -- which may have sabotaged his American breakthrough. Black Francis made an album (turned into a musical) in his honor. You can study to be a rock star at the Herman Brood Academie. His bronze bust in his (and mine) hometown Zwolle has been moved to keep it safe from copper thieves.
posted by monospace at 9:38 AM PST - 15 comments

Tragedy on Volga

100 Dead, Many Children, in Boat Sinking in Russia [more inside]
posted by mooselini at 9:34 AM PST - 21 comments

Video of how ships are launched into the ocean

Hell yeah, let's launch some ships. SLYT.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:11 AM PST - 23 comments

Is Sex Passe?

"Just as the watchword of my generation was freedom, that of my daughter’s generation seems to be control." Erica Jong finds a lack of passion in the longings of 20- and 30-somethings. Her claim is that internet porn and motherhood have replaced the quest for free love initiated by Boomer feminists. Sex educator Violet Blue (both links potentially NSFW) disagrees. Rosie Grey concurs in the Village Voice.
posted by Kitty Stardust at 8:19 AM PST - 130 comments

In 55 Fiction, the Titles are Freebies

55 Fiction is a form of microfiction with a few rules, including a limitation to 55 words. Started as contest in a local San Luis Obispo, California alt-weekly paper in 1987, the contest has since been replicated elsewhere, including two related books (Google books previews) and two unrelated websites. The latest contest is now done. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:14 AM PST - 33 comments

Opposites attract?

Unlikely encounters between famous people is the subject of this tumblr. E.g. Samuel Beckett drives Andre the Giant to school, Janis Joplin has a blind date with future drug czar William Bennett,, or the previously noted meeting between Rosalynn Carter and John Wayne Gacy.
posted by Obscure Reference at 8:10 AM PST - 26 comments

He answers without a second of hesitation or a hint of insincerity. "My name is Jerry."

Odessa, Texas, may be best known for its Permian Panthers high school football team. Their 1988 season was chronicled H. G. Bissinger's non-fiction book Friday Night Lights, which in turn inspired a movie and a tv show. But in 2010, it was another Permian Panthers -- the school's lesser-known basketball team -- that received media attention when it came to light that their star point guard, 16-year-old Jerry Joseph, was in fact a twentytwo-year-old man named Guerdwich Montimere. Now Montimere is facing up to twenty years in jail, but not for lying about his age on the basketball court. During his time at Permian High, he had sex with a fifteen-year-old girl.
posted by Georgina at 7:57 AM PST - 40 comments

WARNING: Please check in with a heterosexual “accountability buddy” before reading this article

How I Went Undercover at Bachmann's Clinic: Truth Wins Out (or TWO) activist John Becker took a hidden camera with him to five therapy sessions at a Christian counseling center run by Marcus Bachmann. Meanwhile, QUEERTY debates whether making fun of Mr. Bachmann's own decidedly "gay-sounding" voice (and theoretical repressed-gay tendencies) is fair game, or whether it counts as homophobic bullying.
posted by hermitosis at 7:35 AM PST - 137 comments

Logic. Do you speak it?

Impasse is a simple flash-based puzzle game that involves getting your object from point A to B.
  • Levels you complete can be scrolled through using "x" to move to the next level and "d" to return the level select button to the first level.
  • The browser saves your progress, so you can close your tab/browser and return to it later.

  • posted by lemuring at 7:30 AM PST - 19 comments

    What happens when you give poor people health insurance?

    The Oregon Health Insurance Experiment: Evidence from the First Year (or, What Happens When You Give Poor People Health Insurance?) "We find that in this first year, the treatment group had substantively and statistically significantly higher health care utilization (including primary and preventive care as well as hospitalizations), lower out-of-pocket medical expenditures and medical debt (including fewer bills sent to collection), and better self-reported physical and mental health than the control group." [more inside]
    posted by OmieWise at 6:50 AM PST - 65 comments

    More Like: IcePuncher

    Icebreaker: one mouse click at the right moment makes the guy in the suit punch the ice wall and break through. Punching at the wrong moment? Not so good. But funny.
    posted by bwg at 4:44 AM PST - 31 comments

    "The critically acclaimed, best-selling documentary series that lays the axe to the root of the idol of popular culture"

    In 1989, Eric Holmberg and The Apologetics Group/Reel to Real Ministries released "Hell's Bells: The Dangers of Rock and Roll" [more inside]
    posted by dubold at 4:36 AM PST - 57 comments

    Simon Singh will mess with your head

    A dramatic and shocking demonstration of how your brain gets fooled to see something that is not there because of your biases, prejudices and expectations.
    posted by pharm at 3:11 AM PST - 63 comments

    Iter pro peregrinis ad Compo-stolen!

    Spanish police are investigating the disappearance of the Codex Calixtinus, a valuable 12th century manuscript [PDFs], from the Santiago de Compostela cathedral in Galicia. The manuscript is a collection of sermons and liturgical texts and served as a guide for the historical Camino de Santiago pilgrimage, which dates back to the Middle Ages. More images of the book here [Spanish].
    posted by chavenet at 2:39 AM PST - 22 comments

    RoboCupSoccer 2011

    Team RoMeLa (Robotics & Mechanisms Laboratory) of Virginia Tech has won first place in the KidSize and AdultSize divisions of the humanoid league of the RoboCup 2011 robotic soccer competition. RoMeLa’s team of DARwIn (Dynamic Anthropomorphic Robot with Intelligence) humanoids defeated last year’s champs, the Darmstadt Dribblers, in the semi-finals on the way to victory in the finals of the KidSize division. Meanwhile, RoMeLa’s CHARLI took first place in the riveting Dribble & Kick AdultSize Final (slyt). [more inside]
    posted by troll at 1:16 AM PST - 4 comments

    July 10

    NBA Ideas

    Bill Simmons - If I Ruled the (NBA) World [more inside]
    posted by beisny at 11:23 PM PST - 31 comments

    The medium is 140 characters. What's the message?

    Influential Canadian media theorist Marshall McLuhan's 100th birthday would be on July 21st. To celebrate, Australian national broadcaster ABC has launched The McLuhan Project. It includes rare footage, an interactive timeline of his life, and the Tweet like McLuhan project.
    posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:20 PM PST - 32 comments

    Rich Finks

    Mark Ames delves into the FBI documentation on surveillance of the Yippies and dredges up the anti-capitalist core of 60's radicalism.
    posted by clarknova at 8:53 PM PST - 28 comments

    Go Tell Fire

    For nearly 2 years now, Manchester band WU LYF (World Unite Lucifer Youth Foundation) has been experimenting with music and the presentation of their image. The group's official website *autoplay on front page* is an assaulting mix of manifesto, art project, and promotion. What started as the intention to have a faceless band quickly gave way to the huge appeal of interesting music, and the band started taking a new approach and taking off the masks. A weird blend of atmospheric indie rock, blues-informed vocals, vaguely political messages, and British soul music, all strangely influenced by American hip hop, makes WU LYF easy pickings for best of the (music) web.
    posted by broadway bill at 8:02 PM PST - 26 comments


    The Mad Music Archive and the Colorectal Surgeon Song as gelotological recommendations | Gelotology.com | Laugh Sounds | Laughter and the Brain | Gelotology: A laughing matter | Gelotology, the study of laughter | The Science of Laughter | What’s So Funny? Well, Maybe Nothing | The science of laughter - Humour may play a vital role in children's development, reports Alastair Clarke. [more inside]
    posted by nickyskye at 6:42 PM PST - 4 comments

    Low Res and High Concept

    YouMakeMeSoHappy is the blog of net-artist Nicolas Sassoon. His work features a minimalist, abstract and low-fidelity aesthetic, combining simple shapes and patterns in animations to produce stunning results. Warning: some flashing lights contained in these links. [more inside]
    posted by codacorolla at 6:25 PM PST - 9 comments

    "Nobody saw this coming. Anybody who did is nobody"

    Sheila Bair just stepped down from leading the FDIC, and has a sad, sordid story to tell . As head of the FDIC, her attempts to correct the imbalances which led to the financial crash were repeatedly ignored. [more inside]
    posted by Coventry at 5:59 PM PST - 64 comments

    Your Paintings.

    Your Paintings a joint initiative between the BBC, the Public Catalogue Foundation and participating collections and museums from across the UK, is a website which aims to show the entire UK national collection of oil paintings, the stories behind the paintings, and where to see them for real. It is made up of paintings from thousands of museums and other public institutions around the country. Currently the archive contains 63,000 of the approximately 200,000 publically-owned artworks that make up the national collection. [more inside]
    posted by dng at 2:35 PM PST - 12 comments

    Vox Roma

    Over 143 episodes of audio, Mike Duncan has covered the founding of Rome through the Crisis of the Third Century in his History of Rome podcast [previously], having now reached the last pagan Emperor, Julian The Apostate. Enlivened by drawing on comparisons to popular culture, from The Empire Strikes Back (when Hannibal makes his appearance) to The Godfather (as a metaphor for Rome's social client system), Mr Duncan's work makes for fun, informative 25-minute sessions with the greatest empire of the ancient western world. If you're interested in more, the podcasts could be handily supplemented with... [more inside]
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 2:32 PM PST - 42 comments

    Leon Panetta believes the war on Al-Qaeda can be won.

    Leon Panetta says U.S. is "within reach" of defeating Al Qaeda. (Video, AP)
    posted by 4ster at 2:02 PM PST - 90 comments

    "Freedom is a good thing"

    Sam and Bethany Torode published a book in 2002 called Open Embrace: A Protestant Couple Rethinks Conception, a book that captured the growing movement among conservative Protestant Christians toward the use of natural family planning. In 2006, the Torodes' announced their perspective had changed slightly (Archive.org capture of full statement). In 2009, the Torodes divorced. Bethany is now writing candidly about her life as a single mother with 4 children on her blog, In Full Bloom. Sam recently published a novel called The Dirty Parts of the Bible.
    posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:36 PM PST - 130 comments

    Frank Lindh, father of 'American Taliban' John Walker Lindh, explains why his son is an innocent victim of America's 'war on terror'

    Frank Lindh, father of 'American Taliban' John Walker Lindh, explains why his son is an innocent victim of America's 'war on terror'
    posted by MighstAllCruckingFighty at 11:18 AM PST - 110 comments

    Typeface based on sculpture becomes motorized sculpture

    Typeface based on sculpture becomes motorized sculpture. The (European) typeface Jigsaw, “which was inspired by sculpture,” finds a use in typesetting the names of donors to a (U.S.) regional arts council. “A motorized disk contains approximately 2,000 names.... Pushing an initial letter on the control panel allows the viewer to find a particular name. The disk rotates and stops at the requested letter and displays all the names corresponding to the requested letter by backlighting them with white LEDs.” (Gallery; Vimeo video.) [more inside]
    posted by joeclark at 10:11 AM PST - 12 comments

    Happy anniversary, Neptune!

    Tomorrow evening, at roughly 9:50 in the evening GMT, marks the first anniversary (more or less) of the discovery of Neptune.
    posted by Dim Siawns at 9:56 AM PST - 35 comments

    Joseph Mitchell

    Joseph Mitchell was a reporter. It's tempting to say his beat was the waterfront, but though he's certainly the poet laureate of the Fulton Fish Market, this would be too literal-minded and geographically limiting. His beat was the margins, including the metaphysical margin of life itself. Mitchell invented a temporal dimension for his stories, a strange and twilit place—Mitchell Time—where a density of historical fact and the feeling of whole eras fading from view are sharply juxtaposed with scenes of cinematic immediacy related in the present tense. A cozy aura of death pervades his work, which often features oldsters experiencing the chilling fear of its approach while gleefully playing hide-and-seek with the reaper. - The Village Voice [more inside]
    posted by Trurl at 9:44 AM PST - 6 comments

    The Scale of Nature: Modeling the Mississippi River

    In 1943 the Army Corps of Engineers approved construction of a 200-acre scale model replicating the Mississippi River and its major tributaries — the Tennessee, Arkansas and Missouri Rivers — encompassing 41 percent of the land area of the United States and 15,000 miles of river.
    posted by T.D. Strange at 9:11 AM PST - 27 comments

    Arboreal Art in Nature

    "Magnificent and Weird Trees" Also see, Living, Growing Architecture.
    posted by zarq at 8:20 AM PST - 18 comments

    "I know well what I am fleeing from but not what I am in search of." ~Michel de Montaigne

    Book Blogs Search Engine: "Looking for reviews of a book by real-life book bloggers? Tired of sifting through corporate sites in your regular Google search results? That’s why I created the Book Blogs custom search engine – all book bloggers, all the time! Whether you’re looking for other non-commercial reviews of a book you’ve just read, or want real readers’ opinions on a new book you’re considering, this is the place." If you want to include your book blog in the search engine, leave a comment at this link.
    posted by Fizz at 7:26 AM PST - 3 comments

    Holy Unrefillable Prescriptions

    Robin's Holiest of Holies [more inside]
    posted by lemuring at 4:55 AM PST - 19 comments

    Charley Bowers: the film genius no one's ever heard of

    “Highbrow critics talk in ornate polysyllables about the ingenuity and art of the German filmmakers. If they condescended to witness the nonsensical genius of a Charley Bowers comedy they could drool dictionaries.” Educational Pictures Press Book for THERE IT IS, January 23, 1928
    Charley Bowers is a genius of silent film and animation that never got the level of attention of his peers Buster Keaton or the Fleischer Brothers. You'll have to search hard to find him in film literature. But watching his work—as a bird lays a Ford Model T or a scruffy ghost tortures a Scotsman and his insect sidekick—you can see the inspiration for the later sight gags of Ernie Kovacs, the visual non sequiturs of Looney Toons, the cut paper trickery of Terry Gilliam and surrealist Andre Breton citing one of Bowers' shorts as the most influential film of 1937. [more inside]
    posted by Gucky at 12:44 AM PST - 18 comments

    July 9

    Toe Wrestling Is Like Arm Wrestling, But With Toes

    Toe Wrestling Is Like Arm Wrestling, But With Toes
    posted by Confess, Fletch at 8:30 PM PST - 17 comments

    They call her "mommy."

    Four years ago, Katie Davis was homecoming queen at her high school in Brentwood, Tenn. She had a yellow convertible and planned to study nursing in college. But those plans changed just a little.Today, she's in Uganda, sharing her home with 13 orphaned or abandoned girls, ages 2 to 15.(second link has sound)
    posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 7:37 PM PST - 221 comments

    Until I find myself again, agaaain, o-o-o-o-ooh.

    Various Neutral Milk Hotel Covers. They'll probably make you want to listen to "Aeroplane" again. Some with better sound quality than others. Not all are all that great but there are some neat gems in there. Enjoy!
    posted by fantodstic at 2:12 PM PST - 41 comments

    Madeline von Foerster

    The Art of Madeline von Foerster (nsfw). [more inside]
    posted by homunculus at 12:15 PM PST - 14 comments

    The 1950s Called, and They Want Their Transportation Bill Back

    The 1950s Called, and They Want Their Transportation Bill Back. "While the bill’s summary lists few specific programs that would be cut, Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) announced in a press conference Thursday that the bill will eliminate funding for several bicycle, pedestrian and transit programs, including Transportation Enhancements, the Recreational Trails Program and Safe Routes to School." League of American Cyclists: "James Inhofe (R-OK), the lead Republican negotiator on the transportation bill, declared that one of his top three priorities for the transportation bill is to eliminate ‘frivolous spending for bike trails.’ " [more inside]
    posted by inkyroom at 12:07 PM PST - 115 comments

    Is it a wonderful day in the neighborhood?

    Neighbor vs. neighbor as homeowner fights get ugly. 'As more are unable to pay homeowners' fees, associations pit neighbor against neighbor'. Today, one in five U.S. homeowners is subject to the will of the homeowners' association, whose boards oversee 24.4 million homes. More than 80 percent of newly constructed homes in the U.S are in association communities. And of the nation's 300,000 homeowners' associations, more than 50 percent now face "serious financial problems," according to a September survey by the Community Association Institute. An October survey found that 65 percent of homeowners' associations have delinquency rates higher than 5 percent, up from 19 percent of associations in 2005.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 12:04 PM PST - 166 comments

    Capital, however, is a fickle lover.

    "But it is the worry that the key source of corporate profitability — Chinese labor — may no longer be docile and cheap for much longer that mainly nags at the country's corporate guests as well as its rising capitalist class. And many fear that the very ruthlessness that Zizek talks about — the iron fist that the Chinese state has deployed over the last three decades in order to achieve the unbeatable 'China price' — has become a central part of the problem."
    posted by notion at 11:53 AM PST - 30 comments

    It Takes Balls

    Tennis at San Quentin [more inside]
    posted by Ideefixe at 10:04 AM PST - 18 comments

    The history of DOS

    "The story begins unambiguously. A group of IBMers, working on a secret project to build a personal computer, flew to Seattle in August, 1980, to see if [Bill] Gates could supply them with an operating system. He couldn't -- and referred them to [Gary] Kildall [of Digital Research Inc.] When they showed up at DRI's offices the next day ... the company's business manager ... refused to sign their nondisclosure agreement.... [IBM] did get together with Kildall ... a short time later, but they couldn't reach an agreement. At around the same time, [IBM] saw Gates again. [IBM] and Gates both knew of the operating system [Tim] Paterson had built at Seattle Computer Co.... "Gates said: 'Do you want to get [QDOS], or do you want me to?' [IBM] said: 'By all means, you get it."' Gates bought Paterson's program, called QDOS, for $50,000, renamed it DOS, improved it, and licensed it to IBM for a low per-copy royalty fee."
    Tim Paterson, the man who created DOS, the operating system that dominated the computer industry between 1981 and 2000, has an occasional blog that provides a fascinating history of the microcomputer industry: Is DOS a Rip-Off of CP/M?; The Contributions of CP/M; Design of DOS; The First DOS Machine; IBM PC Design Antics; and All Those Floppy Disk Formats…
    posted by Jasper Friendly Bear at 8:40 AM PST - 77 comments

    Katamari creator Keita Takahashi joins Glitch

    For fans of gaming and pure delight: Katmari Damacy creator Keita Takahashi has joined the team behind the upcoming Glitch, from the makers of Flickr (and Game Neverending!) [more inside]
    posted by KatlaDragon at 7:52 AM PST - 23 comments

    The Sierra Network / ImagiNation Network

    The Sierra Network - later the ImagiNation Network - was a gaming and chat service for PCs started by Sierra On-Line in 1991 and shut down by AOL in 1998. [more inside]
    posted by curious nu at 7:21 AM PST - 16 comments

    God told the church to go fuck itself

    But I kept all of my gay theology books hidden in a box in the top of my closet, and I tore the book covers off in case someone should walk in while I was reading them. Gay man leaves fundamentalism, finds alcoholism, and is rescued by Anglicanism.
    posted by newrambler at 6:03 AM PST - 50 comments

    Teller speaks! At length!

    Teller speaks! About the psychology of how magic works. Absolutely fascinating. [slyt]
    posted by DoctorFedora at 3:13 AM PST - 53 comments

    I Would Never Tell On You

    Cabaret's Don't Tell Momma performed by a young Judi Dench, or by Molly Ringwald, or Chris Moore, but what would she want with me?
    posted by The Whelk at 12:33 AM PST - 21 comments

    July 8

    Robert Altman's "H.E.A.L.T.H."

    HealtH (1980) [part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10] was the film which ended Robert Altman’s relationship with Twentieth Century Fox, the studio for whom he had made M*A*S*H. ... During the editing of the film Altman’s main supporter, Alan Ladd Jr., left the studio and release was shelved. Altman distributed the film himself to the festival circuit. ... But it has never been released on VHS, DVD or BluRay and thus remains one of the least seen of Altman’s ouvre. This is unfortunate as it is a very entertaining film, even if it falls short of its ambitions as a political satire. Ronald Reagan disagreed - calling it "the world's worst movie".
    posted by Trurl at 11:27 PM PST - 18 comments

    It's SOHOt

    On July 5th the SOlar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured video of a comet, known as a sungrazer, in route to collide with our star. SOHO is equipped with an occluding coronograph that blocks direct sunlight and reveals the corona, but also prevents direct study of the terminal impact of sungrazers. But on July 6th, with the help of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), astronomers were able to observe the comet (slyt) streaking in front of the surface of the sun for the first time in history. It likely disintegrated before impact due to extreme heat and radiation.
    posted by troll at 10:42 PM PST - 18 comments

    babies find their own bliss

    Babies laughing at being sprayed with water | babysitter kitteh | baby loves Bon Jovi| heavy metal lullaby | Oh baby...President Obama. [more inside]
    posted by nickyskye at 10:16 PM PST - 38 comments

    On the failures of Canadian media and government

    Why I Quit My Job Kai Nagata on why he just quit his job as CTV's Quebec City bureau chief at age 24: a critique of Canadian government and media.
    posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 8:05 PM PST - 68 comments

    Discover surprising correlations

    Have you ever tried to raise seamonkeys? 54 percent of atheists think people on a date should split the costs, compared with 29 percent of people in general. In general, 62 percent of people like spicy food. But among those who think flag burning should be illegal, 78 percent like spicy food. 61 percent of people who filter their tap water prefer credit cards over debit cards, compared with 43 percent of people in general.
    posted by Brian B. at 6:05 PM PST - 78 comments

    Some Nice Background Music

    The Illuminated Mixtapes — a running series of playlists for streaming, with hand illustrated covers for each one. Some nice background music while enjoying your MeFi.
    posted by netbros at 5:13 PM PST - 14 comments

    How to Fix Horror

    Jason Zinoman, author of the newly-published Shock Value, a study of horror films from the late 1960s/early 1970s, presents a four-part essay in which he diagnoses the ills of the modern horror film and presents a few solutions. (1 2 3 4) [more inside]
    posted by kittens for breakfast at 3:27 PM PST - 39 comments

    What the hay was that about?

    Flash Friday: My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic - Story of the Blanks. A retro-themed game mixing sweetness with...uh, something unexpected. Suffice it to say, Applebloom and Twilight Sparkle will be in for a surprise. After all, it's not as if Zecora didn't try to tell them...via
    posted by Smart Dalek at 2:56 PM PST - 22 comments

    Deep space. The silence of the void. Shhh.

    NOON, 22ND CENTURY. The research vessel Pegasus is getting ready for liftoff from a spaceport near Moscow. Its small crew of three comprises interplanetary zoologist Dr. Seleznev, his adventurous nine-year-old daughter Alisa, and the terminally pessimistic Captain Zeleny. As they search for rare animal specimens to expand the Moscow zoo's collection, they will discover which of the ferocious tigerat's two tails is longer, save a planet of robots from a paralyzing epidemic, and deliver a modestly sized birthday cake. [more inside]
    posted by Nomyte at 2:18 PM PST - 24 comments

    Tantalizing hints of the world beyond the virtual

    Languages of the World (Wide Web) — Google researchers graph cross-language links on the web, and "see a surprisingly clear map of Europe and Asia"
    posted by blasdelf at 2:13 PM PST - 24 comments

    Yao Ming Retires

    There are precious few 7-footers that can turn into a jump hook while chewing gum at the same time, much less make a living out of it on the pro level. Yet, there Yao was. And he would have been there, even if he was 6 inches shorter than his 7-6 frame. Maybe if it weren't for those extra 6 inches, he and his Rockets would have played into the conference finals last spring. Yao Ming Retires from the NBA. [more inside]
    posted by auto-correct at 1:43 PM PST - 40 comments

    Dr. Rhythm will see you now

    SynthMania - The internet premiere resource for keyboardists [more inside]
    posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:03 PM PST - 18 comments

    On the Road to Damascus

    Bill Drummond, best known as co-founder of the KLF, writes about his slow infatuation with damsons.
    posted by rollick at 12:16 PM PST - 32 comments

    But where did the German newspapers come from?

    Hidden Tunnels, Bugs, and Bigamy: A Strange and True D.C. Story: "Reports indicated that the tunnels were long and extensive – that they may have reached as far as Rock Creek Park. Some electric lighting was discovered inside. For days, wild theories abounded – was it a Confederate soldier hideout? A stop on the Underground Railroad? A liquor depot for bootleggers? A counterfeiter’s lair? Or maybe a secret laboratory for 'Dr. Otto von Golph’s' experiments?

    None of the above." [more inside]
    posted by codacorolla at 11:53 AM PST - 41 comments

    "A modern variation of trompe l'oeil"

    Artist François Abelanet has transformed the courtyard in front of Paris' City Hall into "a new masterpiece of Land Art," on display until July 15. Who To Believe? is a giant, living anamorphosis -- a three-dimensional optical illusion that requires the viewer to stand at a specific vantage point to truly appreciate the work. [more inside]
    posted by bayani at 11:33 AM PST - 7 comments

    "We Don't Care If You Are A Member of the Gorillaz. Let's See Some ID."

    What Do You Do When Your Only Online Identity is a Pseudonym? In a move reminiscent of recent Facebook purges, a well-known Second Life user (whose only online presence is pseudonymous) finds his new Google+ account deleted, allegedly for not being a real person. Whether this move is directly related to the limited-beta status of Google+ or not, questions remain for those who have been 'unpersoned' by Facebook and hopeful that Google's laissez-faire attitude toward personal identification would make G+ a friendlier environment - particularly given Google's encouragement - as recently as February of this year - to "be who you want to be" when using Google services.
    posted by tpoh.org at 11:21 AM PST - 188 comments

    "It's like, okay, I could spend thirteen cents less on a mop..."

    Comedian Louis CK on the Opie and Anthony radio show discussing consumers and commercialism: (part 1) (part 2) (part 3). [more inside]
    posted by spoobnooble at 10:59 AM PST - 35 comments

    People Staring at Computers

    The US Secret Service has raided the home of an artist who collected images from webcams in a New York Apple store. The tumblr is still up, as is a explanation of the project by the artist at F.A.T.
    posted by chavenet at 10:56 AM PST - 64 comments

    Bloggers against type

    Maggie McNeil is a semi-retired "honest courtesan" who recently countered Ashton Kutcher's "sex slavery" claims (previously) with some statistics and facts. Bobbi Starr is a professional concert oboist, nationally ranked swimmer, and works in some of the hardest porn available. She was recently featured on the (highly recommended) BBC Radio Assignment series. Primary links are obviously NSFW; BobbiStarr.com also has potential trigger warnings.
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:47 AM PST - 21 comments

    Corgi wants kibble

    Kibble Dancing: an action packed corgi adventure!
    posted by The Devil Tesla at 10:41 AM PST - 21 comments


    They Might Be Giants cover Chumbawamba’s "Tubthumping," with help from the Onion A/V Club team. An episode from The Onion's A/V Undercover Project, (Previously) in which bands take turns covering a popular song from a master list. Last year, 25 bands covered 25 songs in the A/V offices. (Click "View All Episodes" to see the complete list below the video) To date, there are 26 episodes in 2011.
    posted by zarq at 10:08 AM PST - 95 comments

    You are looking at a Titan Fluorite skull

    You are looking at a Titan Fluorite skull. The skull is 16.9 inches long, from front to back. We specially saved a large piece of high quality fluorite for caving this titan skull, and were all amazed by its beauty when all the carving and polishing were done. A site with remarkable focus and clarity of purpose.
    posted by Wolfdog at 9:47 AM PST - 42 comments

    Eww. Girls.

    Flashing turns pretty girls ugly [SFW]
    posted by christopher.taylor at 9:47 AM PST - 73 comments


    Unable to prevent revellers urinating against their trees, Roskilde Festival in Denmark installed tree-mounted urinals by Dutch designers Aandeboom. Video here. (via).
    posted by nam3d at 9:36 AM PST - 21 comments

    123-year-old recording of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, recited it with feeling and expression

    The Phonograph Doll was the first attempt at making a talking doll, invented by Thomas Edison. The doll utilized a miniature phonograph to talk, and was possibly the first audio recordings for commercial purposes. An example of the (now 123 year-old) talking doll was found in 1967 in Edison's New Jersey workshop, which is now a National Historic Park and museum. Recently, the warped metal cylinder was optically scanned and re-created, providing a 12-second clip of the oldest known recording of a woman's voice. [more inside]
    posted by filthy light thief at 8:58 AM PST - 22 comments

    Texas Rangers Fan Dies After Fall

    Texas Rangers fan Shannon Stone dies following a 20-foot fall at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas while trying to catch a foul ball. Stone's 6-year-old son was in attendance and witnessed the fall. The death comes months after another ballpark fatality at Coors Field in Denver. (VIDEO).
    posted by Tenacious.Me.Tokyo at 8:30 AM PST - 70 comments

    Final American Space Shuttle Launch Scheduled for Today

    The Space Shuttle Atlantis, STS-135, is scheduled to lift off this morning from Kennedy Space Center. The time was originally scheduled for 11:26 AM EDT, but that has been pushed back, despite "no technical concerns and... weather is a 'go'." Astronauts aboard are Commander Chris Ferguson, Pilot Doug Hurley, and Mission Specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim. Watch live coverage, with some archival footage, on NASA's Ustream or on NASA.gov. NASA has provided countdown highlights of the day to get you up to speed. Read NASA's feed on Twitter. At the time of this post's writing, the countdown clock is on a scheduled hold with 9 minutes to go. Previously, STS-134, on the Blue.
    posted by knile at 7:55 AM PST - 197 comments

    "Even as I left Florida, far enough, far enough, wasn't far enough..."

    Sylvia Londono, a real estate agent and mother of two, says her condo, which she bought for $450,000 in 2007, is now worth $150,000. She has never moved in, she says, put off by the stench that rises from the site and a nearby sewage treatment plant on rainy days. “It has been the worst experience ever,” says Londono

    Welcome to Biscayne Landing! You can learn a lot about our sprawling development by reading these informational "articles" (all internally written). Just please don't read this one (source of above quote). Mmmk, thanks! [more inside]
    posted by obscurator at 7:45 AM PST - 39 comments

    Likes: Cats

    Can't Hug Every Cat.
    posted by empath at 7:41 AM PST - 36 comments

    Whisky and Oujia Boards

    Terminus is a (no longer) weekly science fiction/horror single-panel webcomic by Dan White, presented by comics blog Mindless Ones (previously). One strip has even been spun off into a comic.
    posted by griphus at 7:35 AM PST - 4 comments

    Son of Strelka, Son of God

    Son of Strelka, Son of God. [more inside]
    posted by togdon at 7:20 AM PST - 12 comments

    Superstar Ice Hockey

    Red Wing's defenceman Mike Commodore recently tweeted that he is considering changing his jersey number to 64. Deadspin has picked up the story, hinting at a possible grass-roots effort to get Mike to "do the right thing."
    posted by ShutterBun at 5:08 AM PST - 41 comments

    I put my trust in the brush. I let the brush do what it wants to do.

    Professional: Perspectives on Work - Takehiko Inoue 1 2 3 4 5 6
    posted by lemuring at 4:49 AM PST - 4 comments

    "Gatsby without greatness"

    Roger Ebert has discovered the Macmillan Reader's Edition of The Great Gatsby and he hates it: "This is an obscenity." Macmillan Reader's Editions are geared to ESL students. Ebert thinks that's a really bad idea: "Why not have ESL learners begin with Young Adult novels? Why not write books with a simplified vocabulary? Why eviscerate Fitzgerald?" [more inside]
    posted by CCBC at 1:28 AM PST - 245 comments

    July 7

    Edith Head's "How to Dress for Success"

    Winner of more Academy Awards than any other woman in history, costume designer Edith Head authored a 1967 bestseller titled How to Dress for Success which featured her own illustrations. [more inside]
    posted by Trurl at 11:24 PM PST - 34 comments

    classic photos

    Photos by Irving Penn [nsfw] | Photos by Linda McCartney | Photos by Yul Brynner [nsfw] | photos by Henri Dauman | Photos by Phil Stern | A Woman We Love: Ava Gardner | Paintings by Michael Carson | Photos by Ken Schles [nsfw] | Photos by Lillian Bassman| "classic Hollywood" and more | LiveJournal collections by everyday i show.
    posted by nickyskye at 8:12 PM PST - 30 comments

    Fool me once...

    Penn & Teller are fooled not by the performance of Ali Cook, but by mistaking his trick for being original.
    posted by MrChowWow at 7:24 PM PST - 69 comments

    Is South Park done?

    Is South Park done? "Trey Parker and Matt Stone are still under contract through 2013—so no, probably not." but the last episode of the first half of the current season, "You're Getting Old" which is available for streaming tomorrow had "a definite note of weariness and finality" [more inside]
    posted by morganw at 5:13 PM PST - 152 comments

    Well, Maron, I'll tell you why

    Marc Maron interviews Todd Hanson, 20-year veteran writer of The Onion. If you love The Onion, listen to the interview. If you can relate with depression, listen to this interview.
    posted by Taft at 4:42 PM PST - 39 comments

    Gotta blast them all!

    Friday Downloadable Fun: Pixelships is a freeware combination of Pokemon and Defender. Destroy, collect, and upgrade 160 pixelized spaceships in a series of randomly generated levels. The sequel, Pixelships Retro, is now out and is available as shareware.
    posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 4:33 PM PST - 10 comments

    "We've built inactivity into our lifestyles. We've designed communities around cars,"

    Obesity Epidemic Grows: [CNN.com] "Two-thirds of all adults and about a third of all children and teenagers in the United States are overweight or obese according to a report release Thursday by the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). According to "F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2011,"[PDF] adult obesity increased in 16 states during the past year and rates soared to 30% or more in these 12 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia. Four years ago, only one state - Mississippi - had an adult obesity rate of more than 30%. No state showed a decrease in it obesity rate in Thursday's report."
    posted by Fizz at 3:50 PM PST - 229 comments

    "Lower than the regurgitated filth of vultures"

    Threats, blackmail, bribery and illegal bugging all in the name of journalism? Jack Anderson, the bombastic muckraker who broke some of the biggest political stories of the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s, would have felt right at home at the News of the World. A devout Mormon, Anderson was "part circus huckster, part guerrilla fighter, part righteous rogue," a crusading journalist who believed that God was behind his work, no matter how he went about it. [more inside]
    posted by not_the_water at 1:54 PM PST - 15 comments

    Born and Bred in a... snap bean farm

    The Wren's Nest, so named for the birds that took up residence in the mailbox, is the former home of author Joel Chandler Harris, the man behind the Uncle Remus tales. Located on the west side of Atlanta, the house--now a museum--was neglected, in disrepair and in debt until 2006, when Harris' great-great-great-grandson Lain Shakespeare took over as executive director. [more inside]
    posted by Maaik at 1:50 PM PST - 19 comments

    Another Gladiator Gone

    American football player John Mackey has died at 69. Mackey, who scored a 75-yard touchdown for the Baltimore Colts in their victory in 1971's Super Bowl V, suffered from dementia. His wife Sylvia petitioned the NFL to create the 88 Plan, a program that pays for health care for NFL veterans with dementia. By 2007, Mackey, then 65, could not recognize former teammate Ralph Wenzel or distinguish coffee from soup. When the 88 Plan (so-named after Mackey's jersey number) was implemented in 2006, the NFL maintained that the plan, and the 97 players who then qualified for its assistance, "doesn't imply any link between football and brain damage". [more inside]
    posted by Snarl Furillo at 1:28 PM PST - 44 comments

    "Neither political party offered genuine solutions."

    What History Teaches Us About the Welfare State. 'In the wake of the economic crash, which has led to soaring budget deficits, Democrats and Republicans are negotiating “to move forward to trillions of spending cuts,” as House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said recently. A report from House Speaker John Boehner’s office called for “eliminating government agencies and programs” and “reducing transfer payments to households.” These changes would result in unprecedented reductions in the size of the welfare state and the American social compact as it developed over the last century.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 1:06 PM PST - 141 comments

    The cellphone goes really retro

    The Portable Rotary Phone is an original black rotary-dial phone that has been modified to be a cellular phone.
    posted by storybored at 11:54 AM PST - 47 comments

    The Boy Who Lived Forever - Fanfiction According to Time

    Time Magazine's Arts section features a nuanced look at fanfiction this week: Fan fiction is what literature might look like if it were reinvented from scratch after a nuclear apocalypse by a band of brilliant pop-culture junkies trapped in a sealed bunker. [more inside]
    posted by grey_sw at 11:37 AM PST - 73 comments

    Six Strikes

    Major US Internet providers—including AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Cablevision, and Time Warner Cable—have just signed on to a voluntary agreement with the movie and music businesses to crack down on online copyright infringers. The policy features a graduated series of responses to infringing activity, ranging from "educational" warnings to throttling of connection speeds.
    posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:46 AM PST - 91 comments

    In Defense of Prudes

    So, I have come to take back the knife on behalf of us prudes, who quite often are only reserved, shy, terribly square people whose native restraint and weak knees are, in fact, generally accompanied by a deep love of personal freedom and diversity of opinion. Prudery comes in for a lot of flak because people imagine that the prudes want to impose limitations on the behavior of others, but they particularly, especially do not. The wimpy and yikes-prone, far from wishing to restrict or even to express an opinion regarding anyone else's private practices, are in reality possessed of a fervent, if doomed, desire to know as little about them as possible.
    In Defense of Prudes, an essay by Maria Bustillos, from the Awl.
    posted by sweetkid at 10:45 AM PST - 147 comments

    You have to click on the text box?

    Using a computer for the first time. A Firefox UXer has an interesting encounter with someone who has never used a computer before and we all learn something. (Also, Jessamyn has a nice comment.)
    posted by dame at 10:45 AM PST - 128 comments

    Bill Gates on the future of energy

    Bill Gates on energy Nuclear is needed, home solar is cute, the rich are useful, and big batteries are very hard to do, among other things. [more inside]
    posted by doctornemo at 10:06 AM PST - 95 comments

    Science & technology might be exempt from E.U. austerity measures

    There is an European Commission budgetary proposal to boost E.U. funding for science and technology by 45% from €55B to €80B by trimming some fat form the controversial Common Agricultural Policy. [more inside]
    posted by jeffburdges at 10:00 AM PST - 6 comments

    NOTW: 0 - Guardian: 1

    After spending years and millions of pounds settling civil lawsuits, seeing their royal editor and an investigator jailed, and insisting that only a few rotten apples knew about the phone hacking, the 168 year old News of the World is to publish its last issue and close this Sunday. [more inside]
    posted by MattWPBS at 9:39 AM PST - 1050 comments


    A polargraph is a drawing machine that uses a dual-polar coordinates system. It was created by programmer, designer, and maker Sandy Noble. See the webcame here. More pictures on Computerlove.
    posted by shakespeherian at 9:35 AM PST - 1 comment

    Obama goes to China

    Obama proposes Social Security cuts. Amid ongoing debt talks wherein the Democrats are seeking to raise the debt ceiling to prevent the default of Federal debt, "entitlement reform" has been a hot topic. This morning, Obama has taken the unusual step of proposing even larger spending cuts than Republicans have asked for, mystifying many. Has the Grand Bargain arrived?
    posted by mek at 9:30 AM PST - 357 comments

    Africa: History, Cartography and Exploration

    Evolution of the Map of Africa [more inside]
    posted by zarq at 9:00 AM PST - 15 comments

    Viva San Fermin! Viva San Fermin!

    Yesterday, July 6th, was the first day of San Fermín or Sanfermines in Pamplona, in celebration of Saint Fermín. As is tradition, it starts with a rocket, and turns into a giant, joyous, drunken party in the streets. The events to follow have changed over the centuries, with the addition of Riau Riau in 1914 (actual singing, words and lyrics, Spanish Wiki page with lyrics) in 1914, and most recently, leaving of candles and red bandanas at the Church of San Lorenzo, following the singing of Pobre de Mi. Oh, and there's the running of the bulls (route, photos from yesterday's run, previously). [more inside]
    posted by filthy light thief at 8:48 AM PST - 9 comments

    You're Gonna Miss Me

    You're Gonna Miss Me (YT) [more inside]
    posted by swift at 8:30 AM PST - 20 comments

    Open source PCR machine

    OpenPCR now has a kit available to build a thermal cycler for $512. The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is one of molecular biology's most common and often indispensable techniques, used for wide ranging purposes including testing (e.g., uncovering sushi fish fraud) and genetic engineering. OpenPCR puts the technology within better reach of educators and amateurs: commercial thermal cyclers normally cost thousands of dollars. via.
    posted by exogenous at 8:11 AM PST - 40 comments

    IRA Vs Al Qaeda

    Gary Brecher (the "War Nerd") examines the track records of the IRA vs. Al Qaeda "It’s hard for an American to get your head around any of this, but the point, and it’s very 'counter-intuitive' as they say, is that Al Qaeda did everything wrong, spending all their assets and going for maximum kill, and the IRA, the poster-boy for long, slow, crock-pot guerrilla warfare, did it exactly right." (via) [more inside]
    posted by jenkinsEar at 7:51 AM PST - 62 comments

    Why Facebook can't match Ravelry, the social network for knitters.

    The best social network you've (probably) never heard of is one-five-hundredth the size of Facebook. It has no video chat feature, it doesn't let you check in to your favorite restaurant, and there are no games. The company that runs it has just four employees, one of whom is responsible for programming the entire operation. It has never taken any venture capital money and has no plans to go public. Despite these apparent shortcomings, the site's members absolutely adore it. They consider it a key part of their social lives, and they use it to forge deeper connections with strangers—and share more about themselves—than you're likely to see elsewhere online.
    Why Ravelry is such a great community and social network. Prev
    posted by Foci for Analysis at 5:14 AM PST - 108 comments

    Mao's Great Famine

    The £20,000 Samuel Johnson Prize for non-fiction has been won by Mao’s Great Famine by Frank Dikötter. Mao's quest to transform China through rapid industrialisation and the collectivisation of agriculture in the "Great Leap Forward" left up to 45 million people dead.
    posted by joannemullen at 4:56 AM PST - 34 comments

    I like to think of us as artists

    When Smith writes long soliloquies, he doesn't do so from an attempt to ironically portray how Holden conceives relationships with juvenile sentimentality, but because he lacks the ability to give you insight into each character without having them wrenchingly declare themselves and their universe to you. A better writer gives you the details and lets you discover a human being from them, but here, each word is very important, and each one has meaning, because this is communication through vivisection. You open up the animal, and every working part matters. -- Kevin Smith's Chasing Amy, Criterion Collection, reviewed
    posted by crayz at 1:35 AM PST - 88 comments

    July 6

    Guy Picciotto = Rap Superstar

    Music fans have known for a long time that Ian MacKaye's post-hardcore group Fugazi and the members of Shaolin-based hip-hop collective The Wu-tang Clan were really just two sides of the same awesome-sauce coin. So enter the mash-ups of -- wait for it -- WUGAZI! [more inside]
    posted by bardic at 10:49 PM PST - 26 comments

    I failed to make the chess team because of my height.

    Magician Derren Brown admits his chess game is shit. Nonetheless, he plays nine world-class chess masters, simultaneously, and wins more matches than he loses. But how? (via) [more inside]
    posted by JPowers at 10:39 PM PST - 59 comments

    Bill Bailey's message to Metallica

    Bill Baily gets us ready for Sonisphere 2011 (Silly YTL) More? Bill Bailey on the Devil's chord
    posted by the noob at 10:31 PM PST - 20 comments

    The shot that nearly killed me.

    In pictures: the life of a war photographer (There are some graphic images in here; not for the squeamish, though for most would be SFW for most workplaces).
    posted by smoke at 10:11 PM PST - 10 comments

    Bake our dreams come true

    Ever wanted to eat those nachos in the gas station but been too scared? This recipe for Filling Station Nachos will help you out. Thanks to the Milwaukee Public Library's Historic Recipe File you can make that dish, Three Hole Cake or a Milwaukee Man's Crepe. A "fascinating glimpse into the local and ethnic foods that were popular in Milwaukee from as long as 50 years ago." Making Taters Polish Pride or President Washington's Rice Waffles With Honey-Maple Syrup might take you a while. And while there are no bees in Bee Cake, the Barbecued Coon is a different story. [via]
    posted by rakim at 9:49 PM PST - 22 comments

    We're gonna need a bigger stage.

    "As part of the DGA's 75th Anniversary, DGA Lifetime Achievement Award recipient and three-time DGA Award winner, Steven Spielberg, was celebrated on June 11, 2011..." [more inside]
    posted by Neilopolis at 9:06 PM PST - 54 comments

    The Anti PowerPoint Party

    Although ATM's has been recently identified as playing a part in high unemployment, Switzerland's Anti PowerPoint Party believes the country loses approximately 2.1 billion Swiss Francs (2.5 billion $USD) through the use of PowerPoint. If they can obtain the signatures of 100,000 voters as needed under Swiss law the group can call for a national referendum to ban the use of PowerPoint and other presentation software throughout Switzerland. Edward Tufte (and others) also had a problem with PPoint...
    posted by wallstreet1929 at 8:43 PM PST - 56 comments

    It's like ILM, but on a realistic budget.

    Shawn Thorsson makes costumes for his friends Shawn Thorsson, self-professed busiest man alive, uses a laptop, a printer, a carving machine, and a mad scientist's lab of home-made tools to make costumes based on Star Wars, Halo, LEGO, and other appropriately nerdy, sci-fi related media artifacts. He shares them with his friends, and they have the best Halloween ever!
    posted by willhopkins at 7:31 PM PST - 28 comments

    lovable dogs

    Dogs: Tillman the Bulldog Skimboards, Snowboards and Skates! | stair gliding | determined to play catch in spite of a conceptual misunderstanding | swinging | trolled | X-ray video of drinking | climbing | dog fur recycled | The almost deadly July 4th.
    posted by nickyskye at 6:44 PM PST - 14 comments

    Tibetan Singing Bowls

    Tibetan singing bowls give up their chaotic secrets. [Via]
    posted by homunculus at 4:05 PM PST - 7 comments

    Oceans 1

    Shortly before noon yesterday morning an art thief walked into the Weinstein Gallery near San Francisco's Union Square, grabbed Pablo Picasso's 1965 pencil drawing, "Tête de Femme (Head of a Woman)" and strolled casual out of the museum to a waiting cab. Witnesses described the man as a "well dressed" "white man about 6 feet tall, age 30 to 35, wearing a dark jacket, a white shirt, dark pants, large dark glasses and loafers with no socks." Surveillance cameras at nearby restaurant Lefty O'Doul's appear to have captured the suspect as he walked briskly down the street, Picasso under arm.Most galleries that show this caliber of artwork don’t put it on street level,” said gallery owner Rowland Weinstein. “It’s very upsetting, because my goal is to keep this kind of work accessible to the public.” Weinstein says the piece was insured and is valued at $200,000.
    posted by 2bucksplus at 3:39 PM PST - 94 comments

    Getting an intern is so hot right now. It’s also bullshit 99% of the time.

    Why Unpaid Internships are Bullshit.
    posted by dunkadunc at 2:59 PM PST - 152 comments

    "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" apprently about to end.

    In a brief two-page order, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said the "don't ask, don't tell" policy must be lifted now that the Obama administration has concluded it's unconstitutional to treat gay Americans differently under the law.
    posted by andreaazure at 1:49 PM PST - 49 comments

    Reviewing the literary output of Glenn Beck

    Magicland. The Los Angeles Review of Books examines the literary output of Glen Beck. [more inside]
    posted by Ghostride The Whip at 1:19 PM PST - 54 comments

    Space ... the final fronti[FUNDING CANCELLED]

    The House appropriations panel that oversees NASA has proposed a spending bill that would cut funding for the James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to the Hubble and the telescope many astronomers consider the best chance to continue and expand the Hubble's legacy. Here are the Subcommittee Members.
    posted by kyrademon at 1:18 PM PST - 75 comments

    we've always been releasing zookeeper

    For the past few years, networks have been digitally inserting ads and product placements for new products into old reruns.
    posted by DU at 11:43 AM PST - 112 comments

    "You can't think your way out of a paper bag. You've got to act your way out."

    Will young men ever grow up? 'They're often called lost boys, the many young men' in Canada, 'who keep postponing adulthood.' 'Social scientists are trying to figure out why their numbers keep growing.' 'In the past, marriage and family were markers of adulthood, writes Michael Kimmel in his book Guyland, but in a world where young women put off children for careers, where job security is a thing of the past and their parents' values hold little allure, young men can postpone adulthood almost indefinitely.' [more inside]
    posted by VikingSword at 11:17 AM PST - 287 comments

    Boot to the head! And the knee. And the sternum. And then some punches.

    Beat 'em ups and brawlers are a game style that goes back to the mid 80s. Your character moves across a horizontal level, left to right, slowly beating up each and every enemy you come across; progress is typically gated at several points, forcing you to defeat the current pack of adversaries before moving onto the next section. A fellow by the name of Ben Ruiz is working on a brawler and has spent quite a bit of time dissecting their gameplay. [more inside]
    posted by curious nu at 11:15 AM PST - 44 comments


    My Father Is an African Immigrant and My Mother Is a White Girl from Kansas and I Am Not the President of the United States Or, How to Disappoint Your Absent Father in 20 Words or Less
    posted by minifigs at 10:58 AM PST - 28 comments

    It was either get out or die.

    "A Quiverfull daughter is taught from a young age that her purpose in life is to serve the man whom God has placed in authority over her." An interview with ex-Quiverfull believer Vyckie Garrison (of NoLongerQuivering) provides some chilling insight into the lifestyle, fears, motivations, and movers and shakers of the Quiverfull movement. (also posted at PoliticusUSA)
    posted by emjaybee at 10:44 AM PST - 136 comments

    Next stage of primate evolution: duckface

    Macacques get a hold of photographer's camera; self-portraiture follows.
    posted by Tesseractive at 10:13 AM PST - 44 comments

    Afternoon delight

    Mommy, what's it like to be a firework? [more inside]
    posted by dersins at 9:48 AM PST - 12 comments

    Toy Shining

    Illustrator Kyle Lambert has used his iPad (with the Brushed app) to paint a series of stills from an imaginary Toy Story 3/ The Shining mashup.
    posted by bonobothegreat at 9:46 AM PST - 14 comments

    Accent and diction? How will that lead to a career?

    "America?" he says. "I'll tell you about America. America is not all honey and roses the way they tell you. Truth is, 90 percent of the people there, you will find, they'll do the most stupid things, impulsive things. I know for a fact. At the same time, Americans are bighearted people, and the remaining 10 percent of them are smart. Bloody smart. That's why they rule the world." [more inside]
    posted by Naberius at 9:31 AM PST - 90 comments

    Blind Man invited on stage with U2, Nashville, July 2

    You stand at the front of the stage with a sign that reads, "Blind Guitar Player Bring me Up". At the end of the encore Bono looks at you and says "What do you want to play". An uplifting story of a man that traveled to Nashville via Phoenix to watch his favorite band for the 20th time and the night he will never forget. I haven't been a big U2 fan for several years but props to Bono - how many rock stars would think of doing something so bold and generous (he gave him his guitar too).
    posted by incandissonance at 9:30 AM PST - 40 comments

    RIP Wouter

    It looked like the early stages of the 2011 Tour de France would not be marked by the carnage of last year. However, after multiple crashes on a windy 5th stage, perhaps it is time to ask: Has pro cycling become too dangerous? [more inside]
    posted by TheWhiteSkull at 9:04 AM PST - 46 comments

    The Connected States

    The Connected States of America is a supercool interactive map from the MIT Media Lab and IBM that lets you visualize how regions in the US are connected by cell phone calls and SMS messages. Instead of the familiar states, new patterns emerge, with New Jersey and California split in half, and Pittsburgh the new capital of West Virginia, among other changes.
    posted by blahblahblah at 8:28 AM PST - 45 comments

    "Party on the Floor"

    For the second year in a row, DJ Earworm has created a mashup video, "Party on the Floor" of all fifteen artists who performed at Capital FM’s 2011 Summertime Ball at London's Wembley Stadium on June 12th. The video premiered during the concert. His official website has more videos and free, downloadable MP3's. Last year's remix: Like, OMG Baby. (His year-end pop-mashups: previously on Metafilter.) [more inside]
    posted by zarq at 7:42 AM PST - 15 comments

    designers as DJs

    designers.mx is a collection of mixes created and designed by graphic designers. Each mix contains 10 songs and an awesome cover image to tie them all together. Listening is free, but account invites are a hot commodity. [more inside]
    posted by kakarott999 at 7:18 AM PST - 7 comments

    The Chinese art of elegant bribery

    Elegant bribery --- The role of Art in Chinese corruption (via MR).
    posted by bonehead at 7:06 AM PST - 7 comments

    An example of early scifi horror fiction

    "The contemporary setting and concerns of "The Steam Arm" are a very great distance from the Gothic setting and tropes of much 1830s horror fiction, and its science fictional content makes it possibly unique."
    posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:46 AM PST - 16 comments

    RIP Jane Scott

    Jane Scott, who wrote about rock and roll in The Cleveland Plain Dealer until her retirement at 83, has died. "It was the singular combination of Kleenex, peanut butter, a shower cap and earplugs that let Jane Scott thrive in her chosen field for nearly 40 years."
    posted by xenophile at 5:27 AM PST - 26 comments

    Opium of the People?

    Drugs and the Meaning of Life - Sam Harris on why taking psilocybin or LSD is "one of the most important rites of passage a human being can experience".
    posted by joannemullen at 4:17 AM PST - 415 comments

    July 5

    "The dress is designed to look it's most beautiful as the woman walks away"

    The joint crushing of the wedding ring is the highlight of the event With many people reassessing their life choices following the tsunami, Japan is seeing a marked increase in divorce ceremonies. As well as the ring crushing, these ceremonies feature friends and family witnesses, dresses "designed to look it's most beautiful as the woman walks away" and frog motifs.
    posted by sarastro at 9:24 PM PST - 77 comments

    Disappearing Vultures

    India's vultures are vanishing. Populations of three species on the sub-continent have plummeted since the 1980s from 50 million to less than 60,000. Their disappearance could lead to widespread increase in human diseases.
    posted by binturong at 8:43 PM PST - 24 comments

    If you’re a big enough weirdo, people assume that you’re getting paid to be such a big weirdo.

    Beloved gaming website Insert Credit is back, and has kicked off its relaunch with an eight page manifesto about game journalism. During its hiatus fans hungry for intelligent videogame commentary migrated to the forums at Select Button and Tim Rogers' site Action Button (Tim uses the IC manifesto to discuss leaving game journalism). Over at Kotaku, Mike Serrels asks whether something is wrong with video game reviews. Via Gamefilter
    posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 8:42 PM PST - 31 comments

    Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.

    Lots of fun art links making the rounds this week, including Pollock and fluid dynamics and Giuseppe Arcimbaldo, proto-surrealist? Also popping back up, the classic Mr. Picassohead (quite some time previously) and still-stunning Tilt-shifted Van Gogh (previously). But art can be lucrative, and where there's money, there are thieves (Picasso sketch stolen in San Francisco) and cheaters (previously) ... and lawsuits. [more inside]
    posted by Eyebrows McGee at 8:39 PM PST - 4 comments

    Kumar Sangakkara's 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture.

    "Kumar Sangakkara delivered an exceptional speech in his 2011 MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture, touching on the history, culture and opportunities for Sri Lankan cricket as well a moving recounting of the terrorist attack on their team bus in Pakistan." [more inside]
    posted by chunking express at 8:27 PM PST - 13 comments

    Russ Meyer

    Variously dubbed "King Leer", "Hollywood primitive", "trash master" and "dirty old man", this self-proclaimed "King of the Nudies" and "glandscape artist" not only defined the sexploitation genre, he practically invented it. [all links NSFW]
    posted by Trurl at 8:20 PM PST - 20 comments

    "Don't think you'll ever be cast as Eponine or Cosette."

    Patrina Miller sings "Random Black Girl", a song about the one black girl in the musical's chorus. [more inside]
    posted by NoraReed at 7:29 PM PST - 21 comments


    Are We There Yet is a new music video from Dumbfoundead [previously, wikipedia]
    posted by finite at 6:51 PM PST - 4 comments

    A Coin for RBH

    "I am 'a radical in thought (and principle) and a conservative in method' (and conduct)." Rutherford B. Hayes was not just a man who prefigured the game of Beaver! with his steel wool facial hair. [more inside]
    posted by winna at 6:07 PM PST - 8 comments

    smashmouth egg eating contest kicks off fullblown egg holocaust. chicken cloacas dryly gulp. egg goen. ate all the eggs. ate all of them

    After Twitter user @fart directed several non-sequitur tweets at Shrek soundtrack favorite band Smash Mouth's Twitter account, something strange happened: people across the Internet began demanding that the band eat a lot of eggs for charity. What began as a Twitter meme quickly spread across the Internet, from newspaper comment sections to YouTube (actually kind of catchy song!). Predictably, Wikipedia editors spent more than a page arguing over whether or not this was notable. Others on Twitter speculated about the band's reaction. Today, the band finally broke the silence: Smash Mouth has agreed to attempt to eat 24 eggs if they receive $10,000 in donations to St. Jude's Children's Hospital. [more inside]
    posted by cobra_high_tigers at 5:51 PM PST - 60 comments

    Call him John

    "After Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden, the White House released a photo of President Barack Obama and his Cabinet inside the Situation Room, watching the daring raid unfold. Hidden from view, standing just outside the frame of that now-famous photograph was a career CIA analyst" - The man who hunted Osama bin Laden
    posted by vidur at 5:23 PM PST - 58 comments

    Asian fast food artistry

    Fast food in South India is fast | in Thailand iced tea is really cool | in Sri Lanka tea is cooled with dramatic effect | in Delhi the bread is made fast too | in Calcutta it puffs up magically | tea serenely | singly | or two at a time | in China tea is served with a long spout, acrobatically. [more inside]
    posted by nickyskye at 5:20 PM PST - 39 comments

    "There IS a thing called competitive birdwatching..." The decade-long buzz of The Big Year

    In 1998 three birders--Sandy Komito, Al Levantin and Greg Miller--had their big year attempt chronicled in 2004 in a book of the same name by Mark Obmascik. Due to a few fortuitous circumstances including some spectacular fallout on Attu, a remote Alaskan Island, Komito's 1998 record of 745 species has never been surpassed. Their friendly yearlong rivalry is being documented further in a motion picture featuring Owen Wilson, Steve Martin and Jack Black coming out later this year. [more inside]
    posted by jessamyn at 5:06 PM PST - 16 comments

    Otto von Habsburg-Lothringen 1912-2011

    Otto von Habsburg-Lothringen, son of Charles, last monarch of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, died on July 4 at the age of 98. [more inside]
    posted by dhens at 4:40 PM PST - 24 comments

    Cy Twombly, 1928-2011

    Born in Lexington, Virginia in 1928 , friends with Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns, and victim of art vandalism, artist Cy Twombly died today . Some of his works can be seen here and here.
    posted by TedW at 3:03 PM PST - 70 comments

    Vintage Printable

    Vintage Printable provides vintage images in the public domain for download or printing.
    posted by Anonymous at 2:37 PM PST - 13 comments

    Strawbs, Brews, and Moving Pictures

    Beer Brewing Cinemagraphs from Dogfish Head brewery and NYTimes. Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and the duo that popularized the term "cinemagraph" share some moving pictures chronicling parts of the brewing (and juice-making) process. More cinemagraphs at this repository, and in other food-related cinemagraphy on the gilt taste category headers.
    posted by CharlesV42 at 1:14 PM PST - 26 comments

    Huey Lewis and the News: You are hanging from monkey bars in two or more successive class pictures

    what your favorite '80s band says about you
    posted by flex at 11:49 AM PST - 354 comments

    Belly Button Wonderland

    "Out of 53 species [of bacteria found in my belly button], 35 were present in only 10 or fewer other volunteers. And 17 species in my navel didn’t show up in anyone else. In the column for notes in Dunn’s spreadsheet, he’s annotated these species with scientific descriptions like “weird one” and “totally crazy.” Several species I’ve got, such as Marimonas, have only been found in the ocean before. I am particular baffled that I carry a species called Georgenia. Before me, scientists had only found it living in the soil. In Japan." (via Sullivan)
    posted by LarryC at 11:35 AM PST - 74 comments

    Blue #73902

    In a redoubled effort to capture consumers’ attention in this sputtering economic recovery, some paint companies are hoping to distinguish their brands with names that tell a story, summon a memory or evoke an emotion — even a dark one — as long as they result in a sale. What the names do not do is reveal the color. [SLNYT]
    posted by bayani at 11:30 AM PST - 52 comments

    People used to make records, as in a record of an event — the event of people making music in a room

    "The George Sanders Touch: Songs For the Lovely Lady" ...exists. Wow! But Not on CD.
    posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 11:24 AM PST - 10 comments


    "The Japanese call critters like Godzilla "daikaiju", which means something like 'sacred giant monster'. I like this name, because it reflects the awe felt by mere humans in the presence of these creatures. These aren't just large animals, to be trapped for zoos or shot and mounted as trophies (sites like this notwithstanding). These are beings that, by their very presence, shake humanity's conceptions of self-importance and place in the universe." Chris Jarocha-Ernst makes miniature pixel monsters in the style of MicroHeroes. [more inside]
    posted by codacorolla at 11:13 AM PST - 14 comments

    Lee Marvin

    Lee Marvin: A Personal Portrait by John Boorman "While trolling youtube for all things Lee Marvin and Parker I discovered this really nifty mini-documentary that filmmaker John Boorman (Point Blank, Hell in the Pacific, Deliverance, Excalibur) did for the BBC called Lee Marvin: A Personal Portrait. It's really fantastic with appearances from folks like William Hurt, Jim Jarmusch, Pamela Marvin, and others. Readings from Marvin's personal journal about his WWII experiences as well as his great fishing expeditions in Australia. And yes, you'll be able to see the wallet Marvin was carrying when a bullet went whizzing through and granted him his Purple Heart."
    posted by puny human at 10:50 AM PST - 23 comments

    pepsi ultraviolet

    SVK (Special Viewing Kit) is a collaboration between writer Warren Ellis (Transmetropolitan, Planetary, Crooked Little Vein, RED), artist Matt "D'Israeli" Brooker (Stickleback, Lazarus Churchyard, 2000AD) and London-based design studio BERG. It's a comic that features hidden text that is revealed by the included UV flashlight thingy (and also, apparently, a foreword by William Gibson). (wired article)
    posted by juv3nal at 10:14 AM PST - 11 comments

    Asian pollution temporarily slows global warming

    Although the past 12 years have seen the warmest 10 years on record, temperatures have remained fairly steady, even while CO2 emissions grew by nearly a third. Temperatures should have been increasing during this period, rather 1998 was tied with 2010 for hottest on record. Now a study suggests why (pdf): sulfur emissions from Asian coal plants (China mostly) are so high they mimic the effects of a volcano which can cause short term cooling by reflecting light back into space. Insidiously, the long-term warming caused by CO2 (coal) has been masked by short-term cooling of sulfur (coal).
    posted by stbalbach at 10:00 AM PST - 84 comments

    the feeling is great after he cut the chair piece to piece

    "For his new project, Err, artist Jeremy Hutchison contacted various factories around the world, and asked if one of their workers would produce an 'incorrect' version of the product they make every day: in doing so, the functional objects became artworks. Hutchison has also kept all of the correspondence with the factories as part of the project."
    posted by Potomac Avenue at 9:49 AM PST - 27 comments

    "When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground."

    A Song of Ice and Fire [SLYT] Game of Thrones Violin Cover. An acoustic and electric violin cover of the main theme song from Game of Thrones. Arranged and performed by Jason Yang. Original song and soundtrack by Ramin Djawadi.
    posted by Fizz at 9:33 AM PST - 55 comments

    A League Of Its Own

    SI has written an oral history about the making of the movie "Major League". Charlie Sheen was also interviewed for this piece.
    posted by reenum at 9:11 AM PST - 39 comments

    Learn to Fly a Zeppelin

    Fancy a jaunt in a dirigible, do you? Read along with Popular Mechanics and get a feel for it, go along for a 30 minute ride (YT in 4 parts: 1, 2, 3, 4, playlist with all 4), or try a flight sim or two.
    posted by filthy light thief at 8:44 AM PST - 14 comments

    "Message for you, sir"

    "Excuse me, but it appears you have been presented with an addition to your in-box. Would you like tea and crumpets with that, my lord?"

    Do you still receive email (previously)? If so, perhaps you are tired of your system's built-in email notification sound. Never fear, a brave .wav enthusiast has compiled endless references to the receiving and reading of email. These sound bytes span America's rich TV past (well, mostly Simpsons references), but don't miss the veritable Inbox of Babel toward the bottom.
    posted by obscurator at 7:47 AM PST - 49 comments

    Thrills! Chills! Stills!

    Horror Scans: Images from classic horror magazines, lobby cards, ads and pressbooks.
    posted by hermitosis at 6:43 AM PST - 13 comments

    Bad, badder, baddest?

    "It seems that the majority of health claims made, in a large representative sample of UK national newspapers, are supported only by the weakest possible forms of evidence." So states the Guardian's Bad Science columnist and blogger Ben Goldacre in an article describing a study he performed with several colleagues investigating the quality of health advice given in British newspapers. The study can be found here (only the abstract is free for those who don't subscribe, unfortunately). The Guardian's science editor, James Randerson's critique of the article. Goldacre replies in the comments.
    posted by jonnyseveral at 3:28 AM PST - 34 comments

    There's no place like home

    Even if you calculate that on average away teams only ever had a 10 per cent chance of beating one of Mourinho’s sides (for some, like Gijón, it might be a lot less, but for others, like Sporting Lisbon, AC Milan, Manchester United or Barcelona, it would be a lot more), the odds against going unbeaten for 150 matches are more than seven million to one. The London Review Of Books on the home advantage in sports.
    posted by veedubya at 2:21 AM PST - 39 comments

    Video Time Machine

    Hop in the Video Time Machine and scroll to any year: from 1860 (the first recorded sound) to the present day to experience video and audio from that time period: most of it iconic, some forgotten, and others entirely random. Results can be filtered for music, sports, movies, current events and more. [more inside]
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 12:25 AM PST - 8 comments

    July 4

    Girl questions.

    “Sheryl is putting together a new-girls network inside Silicon Valley.” She neither flaunts nor hides her ambition, and she talks about her guilt at not being home more; she takes command in meetings, yet she’s comfortable describing Mark Zuckerberg as “my boss,” and as “the Steve Jobs of his generation.” She is emblematic, Gruenfeld thinks, of a post-feminist woman who believes that “when you blame someone else for keeping you back, you are accepting your powerlessness.”
    posted by availablelight at 9:48 PM PST - 90 comments

    "Get out. Do something. Make something. That's good stuff.""

    Tinkatolli is an extremely cute online game for kids. With a difference; it lets them level up for doing things like making junk spaceships and getting exercise. Kids play as Tinkatollis, tiny creatures who live on an island where junk washes up everyday, which they can turn into cool stuff. It's still in beta testing, but you can explore the TinkaMaker and make your own Tinkatolli. (via Drawn)
    posted by emjaybee at 9:24 PM PST - 14 comments

    I Have Gnarly Potential

    The Rad Project is an in-depth documentation of the changes that turned the standard Japanese NES platformer Magic John into the tubular Totally Rad.
    posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:09 PM PST - 15 comments

    How News of the World interfered with hunt for 13-year-old's killer

    Thirteen-year-old Milly Dowler was kidnapped and murdered on her way home from school in 2002. During the six-month hunt before her body was found, her parents gave exclusive interviews to the News of the World, saying they believed she would be found alive. That hope was based partly on the fact that her voicemails were still being listened to and deleted. Today, it was revealed that the deleting was being done by the News of the World. [more inside]
    posted by bonaldi at 3:22 PM PST - 310 comments

    The Future Gets Closer, Part V: In Case You Missed It

    PBS Newshour covers recent advances in medical technology in an 11 minute video. [more inside]
    posted by StrikeTheViol at 2:40 PM PST - 23 comments

    America - Where Are You Now?

    MONSTER is a 1969 song about America by Canadian band Steppenwolf. [more inside]
    posted by philip-random at 2:11 PM PST - 109 comments

    "the existence of greater crimes does not excuse lesser crimes"

    "You know, I don't really know how else to explain how this makes me incredibly uncomfortable, but I'll just sort of lay it out that I was a single woman, you know, in a foreign country, at 4 AM, in a hotel elevator, with you, just you, and - don't invite me back to your hotel room right after I finish talking about how it creeps me out and makes me uncomfortable when men sexualize me in that manner..." Rebecca Watson, founder of Skepchick, spoke in Dublin at the World Atheist Convention a month ago (video). Afterwards, in a video post (relevant part starts at about 2:30), she discussed an incident that occurred there. She received some dismissive responses. PZ Myers is supportive. Richard Dawkins is dismissive. Dawkins is called out. PZ Myers weighs in again. Dawkins still doesn't get it. [more inside]
    posted by flex at 9:40 AM PST - 1248 comments

    Let Facts be submitted to a candid world

    The Declaration of Independence is perhaps the most masterfully written state paper of Western civilization. As Moses Coit Tyler noted almost a century ago, no assessment of it can be complete without taking into account its extraordinary merits as a work of political prose style. Although many scholars have recognized those merits, there are surprisingly few sustained studies of the stylistic artistry of the Declaration. This essay seeks to illuminate that artistry by probing the discourse microscopically -- at the level of the sentence, phrase, word, and syllable. The University of Wisconsin's Dr. Stephen E. Lucas meticulously analyzes the elegant language of the 235-year-old charter in a distillation of this comprehensive study. More on the Declaration: full transcript and ultra-high-resolution scan, a transcript and scan of Jefferson's annotated rough draft, the little-known royal rebuttal, a thorough history of the parchment itself, a peek at the archival process, a reading of the document by the people of NPR and by a group of prominent actors, H. L. Mencken's "American" translation, Slate's Twitter summaries, and a look at the fates of the 56 signers.
    posted by Rhaomi at 9:22 AM PST - 68 comments

    A Riddle in an Unlikely Game

    Trials HD is a game on Xbox Live Arcade that has been compared to a modern day excite bike. The game requires the player to ride a motorcyle through a number of physics based obstacles to progress through the game. Apparently, there is also a fairly elaborate riddle buried witin the game, revealed through a number of clues.
    posted by SpacemanStix at 9:08 AM PST - 27 comments

    Maximalist Makeover

    Dutch video artists Lernert & Sander (previously)see what happens when a woman wears a year's worth of make-up all at once. [more inside]
    posted by mippy at 8:06 AM PST - 58 comments

    "Either she's an evil, emotionless, miserable human being, or... she's a robot."

    Are Female Music Geeks a Trend in the Movies? [SLVimeo] Exploring a possible emerging trend in contemporary films. Courtesy of Metafilter's own dbarefoot.
    posted by Fizz at 7:48 AM PST - 90 comments

    "What Is This 'sudo' You Speak Of?"

    Self-proclaimed "avid, loyal Windows user" and PC World editor Tony Bradley spent 30 days immersing himself in Ubuntu Linux, and chronicled his experiences as a Linux newbie. His previous project: 30 Days with Google Docs (Via: 1, 2)
    posted by zarq at 5:53 AM PST - 148 comments

    July 3

    There is no "I"

    Meditation, explained by Sam Harris. (slyt)
    posted by Taft at 11:48 PM PST - 49 comments

    India and the Temple of Boom

    A court-mandated opening of some secret chambers at the Sree Padmanabhaswami temple in Kerala - family temple of the ruling royals of the former Kingdom of Travancore - has led to the discovery of a treasure estimated to be worth billions of dollars.
    posted by vidur at 10:09 PM PST - 87 comments

    The essays of Kenneth Rexroth

    The poet and translator Kenneth Rexroth, one of the central figures in the San Francisco Renaissance, only wrote prose for money. But he did it very well. (way previously) [more inside]
    posted by Trurl at 8:53 PM PST - 8 comments

    Rodney Mullen:Yoda :: Kilian Martin:Luke

    Here are two videos of the astoundingly creative and masterful skateboarder Kilian Martin: 1 and 2
    posted by mhjb at 8:31 PM PST - 32 comments

    Marlon Brando's Lost Musical Innovation

    Marlon Brando. Yeah, sure, he could act. Very talented guy. But, hey, he also invented a radically innovative tuning system for conga drums. Played the congas, too. Yup. That's right.
    posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:20 PM PST - 23 comments


    Most of us know and love Dailylit. But, if you want to have more current book snippets emailed to you every day, you can upload your own ebooks to Dripread. [more inside]
    posted by reenum at 8:10 PM PST - 7 comments

    Julian Assange and Slavoj Žižek

    In this conversation, moderated by Democracy Now!'s Amy Goodman, WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange and renowned Slovenian philosopher Slavoj Žižek explore the transparency-advocacy site's three major leaks: the Iraq War Logs, the Guantánamo Bay files and Cablegate. [Two ways to watch: continuous 'live' streaming at The Nation, or a SLYT of the entire 2 hour event...at 42:20 Zizek officially denies the rumors that he's dating Lady Gaga]
    posted by thescientificmethhead at 5:57 PM PST - 45 comments

    Some Approaches to the Question of Chewing Gum Litter.

    Some Approaches to the Question of Chewing Gum Litter.
    posted by shakespeherian at 5:38 PM PST - 52 comments

    Telepathic Spinning Cat Form

    They Might Be Giants is conducting a video contest for the first single from their upcoming 15th studio album. [more inside]
    posted by kagredon at 5:19 PM PST - 23 comments

    Die, Danger, Die, Die, Kill!

    Die, Danger, Die, Die, Kill! is a blog dedicated to 'world pop cinema', and covers everything from Russian science fiction to Italian superhero films.
    posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 4:26 PM PST - 9 comments

    Should we stay or should we go?

    In After Earth Ben Austen looks at "Why, Where, How, and When We Might Leave Our Home Planet" while Jared Daniel asks, if given a chance to found the first human colony on Mars, would you go? Maybe we could turn it into a home away from home or perhaps we should terraform Earth first.
    posted by joannemullen at 3:28 PM PST - 68 comments

    Brave New Beige

    Ever wonder how many variants of jumpsuits there can be? Do mock turtlenecks belong in space? Why is brown the color of respecting alien cultures? Fashion It So takes on the couture of the 24th century one Next Generation episode at a time.
    posted by The Whelk at 3:22 PM PST - 32 comments

    I liked Aragorn before he was king.

    The Broship of the Ring -- The Lord of the Rings envisioned as a buddy/road trip hipster epic. From illustrator Noelle Stevenson.
    posted by seanmpuckett at 2:31 PM PST - 69 comments

    How to get ahead as a hotdog eater...

    From 57 cowbrains in 15 minutes to Ess-a-bagel and hanging out with NYC chefs and models...the 'where is he now' of Takeru Kobayashi.
    posted by bquarters at 1:59 PM PST - 34 comments

    Online Dating

    They’d met in the psychology department at U.C.L.A., where Gonzaga was conducting a study on married couples. Setrakian, who had a master’s in clinical psychology, was the project coördinator. To test their procedures, they needed a man and a woman to impersonate a married couple for multiple sessions. Gonzaga and Setrakian became the impersonators, and fell in love. An article about online dating from the New Yorker.
    posted by wittgenstein at 12:45 PM PST - 17 comments

    How to Peel Hard-boiled Eggs without Peeling

    How to Peel Hard-boiled Eggs without Peeling by Tim Ferriss.
    posted by nickyskye at 12:22 PM PST - 114 comments

    The Most Uncomfortable Half Hour of Television Ever

    This Is Your Life was not always about famous people being surprised with nostalgic reminisces and old friends. Early in the series, the spotlighted guests included ordinary people who had lived though extraordinary circumstances: most controversially, a survivor of Hiroshima, brought on stage in front of a live audience, to be face-to-face with the man who had dropped the atomic bomb on his city. Further background on the meeting. The show did not end its daring there, bringing in a Holocaust survivor in 1953, and ambushing Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy in a hotel room for their only appearance on television together. Semi-related: a remarkable interview with Johnny Lee Clary, a former KKK leader, regarding his interaction with (and eventual peaceful defeat by) Reverend Wade Watts. [more inside]
    posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 10:47 AM PST - 29 comments

    Dr Frank Baxter & Bell Labs Films

    Dr. Frank C. Baxter has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He played Dr. Research in the Bell Labs Science Series, beginning in 1956 with Our Mr. Sun. [more inside]
    posted by warbaby at 10:31 AM PST - 18 comments

    Here There Be Dayton Dragons

    Who holds the longest home sell-out streak in professional sports? The Red Sox have the longest streak in major league baseball, just under 700 games (and counting.) The Washington Redskins have sold out 348 straight home games, a streak dating back to 1968. But the longest streak belongs to the Portland Trail Blazers, who sold out 814 straight home dates between 1977 and 1995. Yesterday, they were joined by the Dayton Dragons of the Class A Midwest League, whose victory over the Bowling Green Hot Rods marked their 814th straight sellout. The Dragons, despite playing in an economically troubled mid-sized city, have sold out every home game the team has ever played, drawing over 8,000 fans a game, better than most AAA clubs. Dragons manager Delino DeShields was last seen on MetaFilter as a hitting coach in the independent Pioneer League. General manager Gary Mayse explains how the Dragons have found success in hard economic times.
    posted by escabeche at 9:53 AM PST - 35 comments

    The History of Cartography

    Free PDFs of The History of Cartography, vol. 1 and 2, from University of Chicago Press.
    posted by Stan Carey at 9:09 AM PST - 13 comments

    Toxteth 30 Years On

    30 years ago today, following the arrest of a motorcyclist, rioting erupted in Toxteth, Liverpool 8, fueled by the mistreatment of the black community by police. The Guardian looks at the causes and consequences of the riots. [more inside]
    posted by hoyland at 3:47 AM PST - 23 comments

    Crystalline chimes.

    Behold, the Gameleste! Custom built per Björk's concept & specifications, playable like a celeste, but designed with the heart of a gamelan, completely programmable using a standard MIDI input, capable of playing pieces that a standard human simply couldn't perform. Featured prominently on "Crystalline", the first track available from the upcoming 'Biophilia'.
    posted by markkraft at 3:36 AM PST - 29 comments

    July 2

    Metacognitive training for schizophrenia suffers (and everybody else)

    Metacognitive training is a useful complementary treatment approach to schizophrenia. MCT aims at sharpening the awareness of patients for a variety of cognitive biases (e.g. jumping to conclusions, attributional biases, over-confidence in errors), which are implicated in the formation and maintenance of schizophrenia positive symptoms (especially delusions), and to ultimately replace these biases with functional cognitive strategies. Researchers at the Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf have developed an MCT program, comprised of eight modules targeting common cognitive errors and problem solving biases in schizophrenia. [more inside]
    posted by aeschenkarnos at 10:33 PM PST - 16 comments

    And how much better to die in all the happy period of undisillusioned youth, to go out in a blaze of light, than to have your body worn out and old and illusions shattered.

    A FOIA request for Ernest Hemingway's FBI file has revealed that J. Edgar Hoover had placed him under surveillance due to his activities in Cuba. His fear that the FBI was spying on him was previously viewed as a consequence of the mental deterioration that eventually lead to his suicide.
    posted by jeffburdges at 8:24 PM PST - 76 comments

    Losing Pockets

    When I was watching "children's programming" in the USA circa 1970s I had Romper Room Captain Kangaroo Sesame Street Electric Company Zoom Great Space Coaster Kids Incorporated ... as well as Patches&Pockets (Previously) [more inside]
    posted by TangerineGurl at 8:19 PM PST - 82 comments

    AMPAS launches Production Art Database

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Margaret Herrick Library today launched its latest online research tool, the Production Art Database. The database contains records for more than 5,300 items from the library’s collection, including motion picture costume and production design drawings, animation art, storyboards and paintings. Nearly half of the records include images, making this an invaluable online resource for researchers interested in motion picture design.
    posted by Trurl at 7:56 PM PST - 7 comments


    Androboi, via Korea's SK Telecom, pisses, belches, and farts to convince you to buy Android phones in Korea. [more inside]
    posted by needled at 4:58 PM PST - 22 comments

    Innocent Until Proven Guilty.

    Tomorrow, closing arguments are scheduled for 9:00 a.m. (Eastern) in the Casey Anthony trial. Since 2008, the case of the young mother accused of killing her toddler daughter, Caylee, has captivated the U.S. Deemed by some to be the 'social media trial of the century,' the capital murder case is based entirely on circumstantial evidence. Tomorrow's hearing is being broadcast on cable station CNN Headline News and streamed live online.
    posted by ericb at 4:10 PM PST - 258 comments

    I'm Gonna Make a Thing

    Hobo Lobo of Hamelin is a thing by a dude, who’s all like, “I’m Gonna Make a Thing.” And then he did. Or is doing. Or, you know, whatever. This dude can be found on the internet. He websites to put food on his family. A wonderfully crafted and designed illustrated book for the digital age.
    posted by netbros at 4:02 PM PST - 26 comments

    Joseph Cornell

    "The first and greatest American Surrealist, Joseph Cornell is best known for his boxes. The best of his mysterious assemblages of dime-store tchochkes and paper ephemera in little hand-made cabinets perfectly realize the elusive sublime at the heart of Surrealism, while avoiding the juvenile theatrics of his European colleagues. However, Cornell was also one of the most original and accomplished filmmakers to emerge from the Surrealist movement, and one of the most peculiar. Just as the ascetic and introverted Cornell himself held Surrealism at arms length, borrowing only those elements that suited his interests and temperament, his films superficially resemble those made by other Surrealists, they are in truth sui generis. Only a handful of his contemporaries understood the genius of films like his Rose Hobart — an unfortunate situation exacerbated by Cornell's own obstinate resistance to public screenings. No one made films even remotely similar to Cornell's for almost thirty years, and even now the perfect opacity of his montage remains unrivalled." Jack's Dream :: Cotillion / The Midnight Party :: By Night with Torch and Spear :: Centuries of June :: more
    posted by puny human at 3:38 PM PST - 16 comments

    Let Them Eat Sugar and drink ethanol.

    Biofuels land grab in Kenya's Tana Delta fuels talk of war.
    Among the culprits the Canadians Bedford Biofuels and the UK company G4 Industries Ltd
    Tana River Delta is an area of Pastoralists and some hip hop musicians.
    Some more from Nature Kenya.
    Let Them Eat Sugar: Life and Livelihood in Kenya’s Tana Delta is a case study by the Autonomous University of Barcelona, Ecological Economics and Integrated Assessment Unit.
    The Tana Delta and Forests Complex had been tentatively listed as a World Heritage site
    posted by adamvasco at 2:49 PM PST - 12 comments

    Quadrotor Fail

    Waaah, quadrotors will take over the world. Waaah, quadrotors will kill us all. Here's what your quadrotor is really like. (Also here's what your quadrotor is really like with Yakety Sax played over it.)
    posted by griphus at 2:24 PM PST - 35 comments

    Copa América live on YouTube

    Copa América is streamed live on YouTube. Copa América is the oldest international football competition, having been held first in 1916. This is a contest between the 10 South American nations and two invitational teams, this time Costa Rica and Mexico, who both sent young squads (Japan was slated to take part but withdrew due to the earthquake). The tournament started yesterday with Bolivia unexpectedly managing to hold Argentina to a draw. Colombia are currently beating a 10-man Costa Rica 1-0. Brazil start their campaign tomorrow, against Venezuela. One of the world's premier football writers, Jonathan Wilson, wrote previews of the three groups, A, B and C. The Independent has more light-hearted team previews.
    posted by Kattullus at 12:54 PM PST - 13 comments

    Who can't empathize with whom?

    "It’s an oft-repeated and erroneous stereotype that autistic people lack empathy." Rachel Cohen-Rottenberg, who was diagnosed with Asperger's at the age of 50, blogs about the different kinds of empathy and to what extent they are present in those with autism.
    posted by Obscure Reference at 10:25 AM PST - 92 comments

    Dude, Where's My Ads?

    Ashton Kutcher and the Village Voice are at war. [more inside]
    posted by Halloween Jack at 10:15 AM PST - 95 comments

    I had more under-boob sweat than usual.

    Sunday in the Park With Boobs The Gloss writer Jamie Peck, inspired by an anonymous woman exercising her legal right in to walk around topless in New York, goes boobs to the breeze on a summer day. (NSFW). Sort of previously, previously.
    posted by emjaybee at 9:27 AM PST - 147 comments

    Trey Anastasio on Improvisation

    BLVR: This is all a pretty analytical approach to improvisation, where I think a lot of people consider Phish’s music to be just “made up on the spot.”
    TA: We’re the most analytical band, in some ways. We’d talk and talk for hours about this stuff. I see improvisation as a craft and as an art. The craft part is important. There’s a lot of preparation and discipline that goes into it just so that, when you’re in the moment, you’re not supposed to be thinking at all.
    The Believer - Interview with Trey Anastasio
    posted by lemuring at 8:04 AM PST - 41 comments

    This tweet was sadly not "Edited. By. Brooke."

    On the Media's Bob Garfield demonstrates How to Turn a Fan into an Enemy in Under 140 Characters.
    posted by joshwa at 7:43 AM PST - 119 comments

    Making Art from the Getty Museum

    The Getty Museum offers some videos of modern artisans demonstrating art techniques from the past. Don't miss the wet collodion photography process - today you can carry a camera in your pocket and look at pictures on your phone, but in 1860 you needed a horse-drawn darkroom to get those shots. [more inside]
    posted by Quietgal at 6:35 AM PST - 6 comments

    Stiff Sock

    The Amarillo Sox are an American Association (independent) baseball team in the panhandle of Texas. They recently commissioned a new mascot costume. The results were unsatisfactory.
    posted by hippybear at 5:13 AM PST - 50 comments

    Adventure Call

    If you ever watched the 80s/90s UK children's TV fantasy show Knightmare, you may enjoy Adventure Call, from Limmy's Show, demonstrating the eloquence and imagination of the Scottish fantasy fan...NSFW [more inside]
    posted by Pilly at 4:27 AM PST - 13 comments

    Field of Dreams

    Cricketer Adrian Shankar recently hit the headlines in Britain after blagging his way into an embarrassed Worcestershire side but he's hardly the first to overcome a complete lack of talent to launch a brief, inglorious sporting career. Rosie Ruiz famously took a bit of a shortcut to 'win' the 1980 Boston marathon and Senegalese footballer Ali Dia made a brief and solitary appearance for Southampton, as substitute for the sublime Matt Le Tissier no less, after fooling the notoriously hard bitten Graeme Souness. Excellent as their efforts may have been, none possessed the all round sporting skills of the immortal Karl Power.
    posted by joannemullen at 12:18 AM PST - 16 comments

    July 1


    Transformers 3 scene from The Island. SlashFilm passes along the news that Michael Bay recycled shots from his 2005 film The Island in his new film Transformers: Dark of the Moon, saving costs by adding different CGI to the same car chase scenes. "I’m not sure how often this kind of thing happens, but my guess is that it happens probably more than you would think."
    posted by mediareport at 9:10 PM PST - 76 comments

    I need a book on how to actually breathe underwater.

    Weird Things Customers Say In Bookshops.
    posted by davidjmcgee at 8:57 PM PST - 99 comments

    Alex Cox's "Straight to Hell"

    Straight to Hell is a 1987 action-comedy film directed by Alex Cox, featuring Sy Richardson, The Clash frontman Joe Strummer (after whose song the film is named), Courtney Love, Dick Rude, Dennis Hopper, Grace Jones, Elvis Costello, Xander Berkeley, Kathy Burke, Jim Jarmusch, Edward Tudor-Pole, Miguel Sandoval, as well as members of The Pogues, Amazulu and The Circle Jerks. ... While the film received almost no positive reviews, it has (like several other of Cox's films) achieved a minor cult status, largely due to its cast of musicians, many of whom have cult followings of their own. A soundtrack has been released. (previously, awesomely)
    posted by Trurl at 7:28 PM PST - 42 comments

    "What It Does to Your Space Is Amazing"

    The Very Surprising Art Collection of a Seattle Housepainter, Stephen Reip. [more inside]
    posted by DarlingBri at 5:43 PM PST - 22 comments

    "With television you just sit, watch, listen. The thinking is done for you."

    Gawker's John Cook yesterday published an exclusive report on a trove of documents from the Nixon Presidential Library tracing the development of Fox News to a 1970 internal memo annotated by then-consultant Roger Ailes. Part of a 318-page cache of similar documents, the memo -- "A Plan For Putting the GOP on TV News" -- called for the creation of a strongly pro-Nixon news outlet operated from the White House which would disseminate partisan news packages free of charge to local affiliates across the country. By coordinating release of these targeted reports with allied politicians and duping opponents into hostile interviews, Ailes hoped to bypass the "prejudices of network news" -- a desire which led him to advocate for some unexpected political policies at the time, from campaign finance reform to anti-poverty efforts. The report comes as Fox is waging an aggressive two-front PR war with perceived ideological enemies -- calling on viewers to file IRS complaints against Media Matters' tax-exempt status for their dogged fact-checking of the network, while on-air hosts launched a campaign to label Jon Stewart "racist" after he called out their record of falsehoods following a critical interview with Chris Wallace (previously).
    posted by Rhaomi at 3:44 PM PST - 91 comments

    eight thousand floating fireballs over poland

    To celebrate the recent summer solstice, residents of Poznań, Poland gathered to break the country’s record for releasing paper lanterns by setting 8,000 of the glowing lights aloft. More. (via) [more inside]
    posted by crunchland at 3:25 PM PST - 39 comments

    Canadian Please

    Canadian Please. For Canada Day, a do-it-yourself music video by Julia Bentley and Andrew Gunadie. [more inside]
    posted by russilwvong at 2:09 PM PST - 31 comments

    Cory Maye free

    After spending ten years in prison for capital murder, most of it on death row, Cory Maye is to be set free.
    posted by vivelame at 1:18 PM PST - 32 comments

    Hung like two distributions from the mean

    One of the results of unlimited internet porn is that guys invariably compare their own members to those they see on the net. And lots of them aren't happy.
    posted by Netzapper at 12:49 PM PST - 152 comments

    Live action promo video for Shadowrun from 1990

    The cyberpunk/magic roleplaying game Shadowrun was launched in 1990 with the help of this live-action promo video. Previously.
    posted by bq at 12:38 PM PST - 92 comments

    Why Diet Sodas Are No Benefit to Dieters

    A recent study shows that people who drink diet soda tend to have larger waist circumferences over time. But is there an actual link? [more inside]
    posted by reenum at 12:23 PM PST - 83 comments

    Blackboard being bought

    Major educational technology company sold: Blackboard, the leading course management system firm, agreed to be purchased. Providence Equity is spending $45 a share, for a total of around $1.64 billion US (pdf). [more inside]
    posted by doctornemo at 12:10 PM PST - 79 comments

    no phoneys

    This weekend marks the one-year anniversary of the lowest combined game score in a game of Scrabble, -22, played between Marlon Hill (−6) and Ben Schoenbrun (−16) on July 3, 2010, in Albany, NY. It also marks the anniversary of Edward De Guzman's record-setting final score (771) (PDF details, annotated gameboard), as well as Nigel Peltier's record seven bingos in a single game (picture of final board). Still more Scrabble records. [more inside]
    posted by gerryblog at 12:05 PM PST - 46 comments


    The Soundworks Collection gives a behind-the-scenes look into the work of talented sound teams working on feature films, soundtrack scoring, and video games with a compilation of exclusive interviews, awards shows / event panel coverage and sound stage / studio room videos. Vimeo Channel. YouTube Channel. [more inside]
    posted by zarq at 11:13 AM PST - 8 comments

    Le Tour via steephill.tv

    Forget Velonews. For years now, the best place to follow the big cycling stage races has been steephill.tv, a "bike travelogue" with stage previews, results, news articles, photos, and video curated every day of the race. This site is an obvious labor of love... with no ads! If you want to watch or listen to the Tour de France for free, steephill will helpfully tell you where to go on the web. But if you're away from your computer or don't have Versus (in the US), there's an NBC iPhone app with live video, for $14.99 (launches iTunes) [more inside]
    posted by jstef at 10:46 AM PST - 24 comments

    Civil War Diaries and Letters

    Love and Valor the movie is based on the book, Love and Valor – The Intimate Civil War Letters Between Captain Jacob and Emeline Ritner Both projects by Charles Larimer. Hear him discuss these letters on Talk of Iowa. Mentioned in this episode: University of Iowa Libraries Civil War Diaries and Letters. Crowdsourcing transcription of these letters.
    posted by cjorgensen at 9:48 AM PST - 1 comment

    Josephine Tey

    Someone used to great responsibility, and responsible in his authority. Someone too-conscientious...He had that incommunicable, that indescribable look that childhood suffering leaves behind it; less positive than the look on a cripple’s face, but as inescapable. This the artist had both understood and translated into terms of paint...He turned the portrait over to look for a caption. On the back was printed: Richard the Third.
    From Josephine Tey's The Daughter of Time, "a book of singular originality, ingenuity and humanity" often cited as one of the best of all mystery novels. [more inside]
    posted by Iridic at 9:48 AM PST - 31 comments

    A news segment from 1986 explaining the possibilities of computer music

    A news segment from 1986 explaining the possibilities of computer music: P1, P2, P3.
    posted by rageagainsttherobots at 8:48 AM PST - 26 comments

    Little Shop of Horrors closed (but not for renovation)

    "On Saturday June 18, 2011, representatives from the licensing agency came to watch our production. I met them before the show and explained the reasons behind my actions and that I understood the consequences. The cast was also prepared. We could have restored the production to the original script, we could have canceled the show and left them to wonder, we could have faked a medical emergency or technical failure – believe me, all of these scenarios crossed my mind. In the end, we chose to be honest and share the production we had created." Artistic director Nick A. Olivero writes an open letter to the theatre and arts community discussing the recent forced closure of his show, Little Shop of Horrors, at San Fransisco's Boxcar Theatre Company. [more inside]
    posted by Thin Lizzy at 8:19 AM PST - 127 comments

    Illustrated recipes

    Do you find yourself envious of the perfectly staged photos accompanying recipes? Are your drawing skills better than your culinary skills? Recipe Look is a collection of user-submitted illustrated recipes, some with pictures fit for a magazine, others a bit more casual. See also: Drawn Butter, an illustrated recipe blog (via Johnny Wander's Ecto-Cooler Smoothie); Pictoral Recipes from Oregon State University (in English and Spanish); and two recipes from comic artist Lucy Knisley (via; Knisley prev, prev).
    posted by filthy light thief at 8:17 AM PST - 5 comments

    Hopes for prohibition's end - up in smoke.

    In an apparent reversal (err, 'clarification') of the Oct. 2009 'Ogden Memo' (previously), the DEA has has issued a new memo stating that "Persons who are in the business of cultivating, selling or distributing marijuana, and those who knowingly facilitate such activities, are in violation of the Controlled Substances Act, regardless of state law." [more inside]
    posted by FatherDagon at 7:36 AM PST - 147 comments

    Clock Blockers

    What would happen if you took a game like Braid and made it a first-person shooter? Something you'll have to watch at least twice (SLYT) [more inside]
    posted by WhackyparseThis at 7:34 AM PST - 29 comments

    More Google than you require

    New search goodies - While the rest of us wait for our Google+ invites, Google has quietly pushed some significant changes to its web and image search interfaces. [more inside]
    posted by kakarott999 at 7:10 AM PST - 112 comments

    Video Game Industry Noire

    Why developing the acclaimed video game L.A. Noire was a seven year nightmare for its 100+ (uncredited) developers that resulted in an investigation by the International Game Developers Association. [more inside]
    posted by Foci for Analysis at 7:06 AM PST - 37 comments

    Cos I like you so much better when you're naked! I like ME so much better when you're naked!

    Ida Maria is a 26-year-old Norwegian pop-punk-rock musician whose music is both catchy as shit and surprisingly vulnerable. Her lyrics are simple but sometimes uncomfortably honest. Her first album had two big hits with excellent music videos: I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked and Oh My God. Other songs off the album that I'm fond of: Queen of the World (my personal favorite); Louie; Keep Me Warm. Her second album, Katla, has a more eclectic sound, ranging from the vintage pop-inspired Quite Nice People to the horn-driven I Eat Boys Like You For Breakfast to the dirty Bad Karma to the sillier Cherry Red.
    posted by Rory Marinich at 5:53 AM PST - 38 comments

    Grumpy Wizards make toxic brew for the Evil Queen and Jack

    Google WebFonts - 184+ open-source webfonts from Google.
    posted by blue_beetle at 5:42 AM PST - 42 comments

    Literally Awesome!

    Worn-out Words: [Guardian] Last year Ledbury poetry festival asked poets to name their most hated words. For this year's festival – running from 1 to 10 July – they've asked for the expressions that have become such cliches that they have lost all meaning. Here are their responses: please add your own.
    posted by Fizz at 5:09 AM PST - 161 comments

    Explore Minnesota... some other time

    Last fall, Minnesotans elected a Democratic governor who pledged to tax the rich and a majority Republican legislature who swore by no new taxes, period. Their first major task? Craft a budget for the next biennium that addressed a projected $5 billion shortfall. Months passed, no agreement was reached, and this morning at midnight, the Minnesota government shut down. Citizens on both sides are not pleased. [more inside]
    posted by Flannery Culp at 4:31 AM PST - 90 comments

    No Deportation for Henry Velandia, Yet

    Federal Immigration Authorities Cancel Removal Proceedings for the Same Sex Spouse of a US Citizen. [more inside]
    posted by Bulgaroktonos at 4:20 AM PST - 14 comments

    Simple Symbols

    = ½ * QED ? 4 3 [more inside]
    posted by twoleftfeet at 3:56 AM PST - 18 comments

    Avastin and the power of hope

    Based on a lack of evidence for efficacy, "an FDA panel unanimously voted to revoke its approval of Avastin (bevacizumab) for breast cancer. The decision evoked cheers from some groups and jeers from others. At least one group derided the decision as the work of a 'death panel'". An interesting article on the withdrawal of a "miracle" drug from a section of the market, explaining the reasoning behind the decision and discussing the reaction from patients, many of whom believe -- despite the evidence -- that the drug was actually helping them. [more inside]
    posted by metaBugs at 3:49 AM PST - 11 comments