May 15, 2018

The official research on who would or would not fuck a robot is small.

The easy fantasy of what a sex robot might be — indistinguishable from an actual human, except hotter and prepared to fulfill any desire — is far from the current reality. Henry, if we’re being cruel, is essentially a high-quality dildo attached to a fancy mannequin with a Bluetooth speaker in his head. But the gulf between what we imagine and what’s possible makes sex robots the perfect vehicle for pondering our sexual and technological future. We might not wake up with sex robots in our beds tomorrow, but right now they’re an irresistible thought experiment. Since making my date with Henry, he’s become my favorite dinner-party topic. Would you fuck a robot? I’ve asked countless friends, as we all gather round a phone and flip through photos and videos of Henry like he’s someone’s latest Tinder match. (Weak conversational skills, but always DTF … maybe yes?)
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:58 PM PST - 123 comments

Undiscovered continent

A Silver Thread: Islam in Eastern Europe A long article by Jacob Mikanowski in the Los Angeles Review of Books about Islam in Eastern Europe through folklore and history. [more inside]
posted by tavegyl at 9:22 PM PST - 5 comments


The past, present and future of The Binding of Isaac [Polygon] “Originally designed in Flash, The Binding of Isaac has since been updated and released on around a dozen platforms, with millions of copies sold. The basic premise: A boy named Isaac is locked in the basement of his home by his mother. There, he must survive an unending wave of horrors that are probably just representations of his own psychosis. The core gameplay, though, is fairly traditional. Really it’s just a shooter with original Zelda DNA mixed in. [...] Almost all of the reviews listed are from people who have played for more than 100 hours. When The Binding of Isaac grabs you, it does so without mercy.” [YouTube][Trailer][Interview w/Edmund McMillen] [more inside]
posted by Fizz at 7:59 PM PST - 54 comments

Spend time with friends / spend time on art / leave the nights for me.

Blackout poetry. [more inside]
posted by queen anne's remorse at 6:01 PM PST - 8 comments

POW Olympics WWII

Woldenburg POW camp managed to hold an olympics, mostly for officers.
posted by MovableBookLady at 5:56 PM PST - 4 comments

A lost child, saved in an inconceivable way

Time and again, the bear they had sworn would rip us limb from limb was begrudgingly allowed a place at the table, and behold, it used a fork and a spoon. The natural laws we have believed in and taught our children have sometimes been found to be not natural laws at all, but rather fearsome constructs of our own making, undermined by the evidence. And among those mistakes there is this: All of the promises of politicians, generals, madmen, and crusaders that war can create peace have yet to be borne out.
Small Wonder: a timeless essay on fear, war and hope, by Barbara Kingsolver.
posted by Rumple at 5:00 PM PST - 10 comments

Kato Kaelin No Longer Worst Houseguest Ever

For the past few years, Julian Assange has been a guest of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, after former president Rafael Correa offered him political asylum. That said, little was known about the lengths that Ecuador would go to in order to protect Assange, or how he repaid that.

Until now.

The Guardian and Focus Ecuador have released details on Operation Hotel, the operation by Ecuadorian Intelligence to support Assange and monitor him. [more inside]
posted by NoxAeternum at 3:58 PM PST - 100 comments

One Brain to record them all

Brian Peter George St John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno turns 70 today. Rolling Stone has a nifty tribute, as does Pitchfork, but I've used my copy of Oblique Strategies to put this together. Don't blame me, blame 15 year old me. [more inside]
posted by maudlin at 2:20 PM PST - 30 comments

The Fault in Our Ears

@CloeCouture: What do you hear?! Yanny or Laurel [Twitter link]

Please just help us out here. Listen to the clip below and tell us if you hear the word “Yanny” (not a word) or “Laurel.”
Depending on a number of factors — including the sound settings on your computer, and maybe more crucially, your age — you might hear one or the other.

posted by Atom Eyes at 1:17 PM PST - 271 comments

Black Klansman, again but different

BlacKkKlansman (trailer; Wikipedia): A Spike Lee joint. From producer Jordan Peele. Based on some fo’ real, fo’ real sh*t. (2014 Vice interview with Ron Stallworth, the first black cop in Colorado Springs, who infiltrated the local Klan organization) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 1:01 PM PST - 19 comments

The dumbest publishing platform on the web.
- About
posted by cjorgensen at 11:49 AM PST - 46 comments

“We do want to write on it, though.”

David Letterman Just Can’t Figure Out Why He Never Had Women Writers. [more inside]
posted by roger ackroyd at 11:11 AM PST - 52 comments

Money and the murky boundary of teaching and sex

Every few years an essay appears that treats the question of sexual harassment in the academy as an occasion to muse on the murky boundaries of teaching and sex. While a staple of the genre is the self-serving apologia for an older male harasser, the authors are not always old or male. And though some defend sex between students and professors, many do not. These latter writers have something finer, more Greek, in mind. They seek not a congress of bodies but a union of souls. Eros is their muse, knowledge their desire.... I call this genre The Erotic Professor.
posted by Cash4Lead at 10:24 AM PST - 39 comments

Once asked to describe his get-up, Mr. Wolfe replied, “Neo-pretentious.

Tom Wolfe, the white-suited wizard of “New Journalism” who exuberantly chronicled American culture from the Merry Pranksters through the space race before turning his satiric wit to such novels as “The Bonfire of the Vanities” and “A Man in Full,” has died. He was 88. [more inside]
posted by not_the_water at 9:25 AM PST - 96 comments


As the Brexit phony war rumbles on with deadlines getting ever nearer, it's time to ask the big question... namely is it racist / prejudice to call angry, red-faced, middle-aged, right-wing, white men, 'gammons'?
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:15 AM PST - 132 comments

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