September 13, 2014
Hear "Give It Up", a beautiful new track from Kutiman's followup to "Thru You". Five years after the original Thru You project, Israeli producer Kutiman is teasing the release of a new collection of original tracks, painstakingly stitched together from unrelated YouTube videos. [more inside]
"Scientists reset human stem cells to earliest developmental state" The paper, published in Cell, is available under a CC-3.0 license. [See: earlier Mefi post] [more inside]
Ian McEwan: the law versus religious belief. [The Guardian]
The conjoined twins who would die without medical intervention, a boy who refused blood transfusions on religious grounds…Ian McEwan on the stories from the family courts that inspired his latest novel.[more inside]
European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst captured this photograph from the International Space Station and tweeted "Words can't describe how it feels flying through an #aurora. I wouldn't even know where to begin..." Not many can share his experience, but photographer Paul Williams captured an aurora while on a flight from London to New York (stills on Flickr). NASA's Science News has an article on Flying Through a Geomagnetic Storm, with information on how auroras are formed, and a bit more on what it's like to fly through them, with an accompanying video (previously).
If you have a good cat and you don't want to lose it, you must rub its nose and four legs with butter for three days, and it will never leave the house. [more inside]
According to Kathy Griffin, when she expressed interest in hosting The Late Late Show, she was told they were "not considering females at this time." This is especially ironic considering that the current Late Late Show host, Craig Ferguson, stated that he thought the next host should "unquestionably be a female." Even worse, there was some talk about David Letterman's Late Show hosting spot going to a woman after he stepped down, but no dice. [more inside]
An appeals panel of the Seventh Circuit ruled yesterday (pdf) that Wisconsin may immediately implement a photo ID law, for the November 4th election. [more inside]
1944 Locomotive firing course. Traffic demands during World War II taxed American railroads to their capacity. Orders for new steam locomotives kept the builders busy. Along with the need for more locomotives came the need for men trained to operate them. Responding to this situation, the Education Department of the State of New York, through its State University system and the Bureau of Industrial and Technical Education, published a Suggested Unit Course in Locomotive Firing. The course was prepared by curriculum writers at Seneca Vocational High School in Buffalo, and was issued from Albany in 1944.
In the somewhat tumultuous debate over the Scottish independence (previously), and with less than a week before the historic vote, a new voice has risen out of the fray.
Michael Winslow does Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love." The original here for comparison. Bonus behind the scenes footage. [more inside]
"There is nowhere to have a quiet chat – if a channel controller wants to discuss a commission, they must first book time in a glass-walled meeting room named after some long-gone BBC character – the Del Boy or Wilfred Pickles suite or something. The Mr Pastry Suite or the Basil Fawlty Snack Bar would have been no more likely to produce creative ideas, but at least it might have been fun getting the summons." (SLGuardian)
Modern linguistics is founded on a radical premise: the equality of all languages. “All languages have equal expressive power as communication systems,” writes Steven Pinker. “Every grammar is equally complex and logical and capable of producing an infinite set of sentences to express any thought one might wish to express,” says a recent textbook. … Where native speakers are concerned, no language, dialect, or accent can meaningfully be described as primitive, broken, or inferior.
Ghostbusters is the best comedy ever made about the limits of the Lovecraftian worldview. By Max Gladstone.