Popular Favorites

Showing posts and comments from:  

Popular posts and comments marked as a favorite most often in the past seven days. Also check out a curated list of highlights at Best Of MetaFilter. You can subscribe to popular posts across all sites via RSS or Twitter and Comments via RSS.


Popular Posts

You're not going crazy, Arthur, you're going sane in a crazy world!

In 1986, 18-year-old cartoonist Ben Edlund created The Tick as a mock-hero mascot for a newsletter for New England Comics, where he was a customer. A few pages of The Tick were included in the New England Comics Newsletter in '86, and two years later, NEC published the first of the black-and-white comic book series, featuring wacky superheroes and bizarre super villains. From there, The Tick and his compatriots has been in a three-season cartoon series on Fox Kids, a live-action series on Fox in 2001, and again as live-action in an Amazon exclusive production. One of the many things that makes The Tick’s situation unique is that Edlund has been centrally involved with every version since the ’80s, including the most recent live-action series.
posted by filthy light thief to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 10:54 PM
121 users marked this as a favorite

Augmenting Long-term Memory

In this essay we investigate personal memory systems, that is, systems designed to improve the long-term memory of a single person. In the first part of the essay I describe my personal experience using such a system, named Anki ... The second part of the essay discusses personal memory systems in general. Many people treat memory ambivalently or even disparagingly as a cognitive skill: for instance, people often talk of “rote memory” as though it's inferior to more advanced kinds of understanding. I'll argue against this point of view, and make a case that memory is central to problem solving and creativity. A detailed long read from Michael Nielsen including a discussion of how he prepared himself to write an article on AlphaGo for Quanta Magazine.
posted by Wolfdog to MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 7:57 AM
112 users marked this as a favorite

What are your rituals related to self-care or introspection?

I’d like to add more structure to my life and I’m looking for ideas for little rituals or small structured practices I can start doing. Specifically I am looking for rituals related to introspection, self-care, mental health, stress reduction, relationships and new experiences. So: tell me your rituals, routines, habits and practices related to those things.
posted by aka burlap to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 7:07 AM
80 users marked this as a favorite


It's the end of another week. Politics is awful like usual, and much of the world seems to literally be on fire. So let's talk about something else instead. Tell me about a cool 'life hack'. Maybe you found a way to pack luggage in a way that has made traveling easier. Maybe you found a way to deal with oily skin using some old world natural remedies. Maybe there's a cool browser extension or add-on that lets you do some nifty thing in your day to day Internet consumption. Whatever it is, feel free to share some life hacks with the MetaFilter community. I'm always excited to learn about ways to make my life a bit easier/better.
posted by Fizz to MetaTalk on Aug 10 at 7:38 AM
76 users marked this as a favorite

books about historical women

looking for well-written, compelling books about historical women
posted by Cozybee to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 14 at 12:04 PM
69 users marked this as a favorite

People use basic income to improve their quality of life

Universal basic income hasn't made me rich. But my life is more enriching: "The Finnish basic income trial, of which I am part, finishes at the end of the year. Having been interviewed by nearly 70 separate media outlets, from the BBC to Le Figaro, the question I have been asked most often has been: how has the basic income trial changed my life? My answer is simple. In money terms, my life has not changed at all. However, the psychological effects of this human experiment have been transformative. I vastly prefer basic income to a benefits system fraught with complicated forms, mandatory courses and pointless obligations... it gives you security to chase other opportunities. It pushes you to seek fulfilling work – and isn't that what unemployment benefits should do?"
posted by kliuless to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 5:38 AM
66 users marked this as a favorite

What are the definitive music videos of the last 10-ish years?

I feel like the music video had a high point in the '90s and then I stopped paying attention. Please recommend me 2 or 3 videos from the last while that are must-see, be it for artistry, originality, infamy, whatever. Context would be appreciated. I have seen This Is America.
posted by cult_url_bias to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 9:56 PM
64 users marked this as a favorite

The Real Birth Of A Nation

"The oldest known surviving film made by an African-American director, Within Our Gates is a searing account of the US racial situation during the early twentieth century, including the years of Jim Crow, the revival of the Ku Klux Klan, the Great Migration of Southern blacks to cities in the North, and the emergence of the “New Negro”. Directed by Oscar Micheaux, the film is one of the earliest and finest examples in the genre of “race films”. Produced outside the main Hollywood machine, these films were purposefully made for an all-black audience, featured black actors, and became important arenas through which representations of African-Americans in mass culture were contested." (Within Our Gates YouTube) - Industrious African-American filmmaker Oscar Micheaux designed a cunning film that is in so many ways an inversion of The Birth of a Nation. Where Griffith simplifies history, Within Our Gates complicates it. - This movie is very much the antithesis of Birth. The black characters are given a depth and humanity that would have been denied them in standard Hollywood productions. Sylvia in particular is amazing considering the period: she is a female character who manages to be independent and intelligent, - Restored 'Race Films' Find New Audiences (NPR)
posted by The Whelk to MetaFilter on Aug 15 at 1:32 AM
64 users marked this as a favorite

It's all fu

NandGame.com will take you though building a working computer, starting from the most basic components.
posted by zamboni to MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 12:37 PM
60 users marked this as a favorite

Curvy on the bottom and straight on top

Michaeleen Doucleff for NRP: Maybe the problem, when it comes to back pain, isn't how much Americans are sitting, but the way we're sitting. If we change the way we sit, it will help to decrease back problems. Take a look at people who are sitting down – not face-on but rather from the side, in profile, so you can see the shape of their spine. There's a high probability their back is curving like the letter C. To straighten out the C shape, [Jenn] Sherer says, "we need to position the pelvis in a way that this tail could wag." In other words, we need to untuck our tails. To do that, Sherer says, you need to bend over properly when you go to sit down.
posted by numaner to MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 1:03 PM
56 users marked this as a favorite

The Story We Don’t Talk About: On Irishness, Immigration, and Race

Maeve Higgins writes on Irishness, immigration, and race: Being white in America is so potent, so seductive, it can blind a person without them knowing it. Being white can make a whole community forget who they are and where they came from. The year Frederick Douglass visited Ireland was the year the country began its terrible spiral into a famine that ultimately killed a million people. There had been food shortages before, and the extent of the disaster was not yet clear, but he writes in a letter of the horror of leaving his house and being confronted with the sight of hungry children begging on the street. It’s painful to look through that lens at the present and see so many powerful Irish-Americans, like Paul Ryan, whose great-great-grandfather survived the famine and fled to America in 1851, doing everything they can to stop today’s refugees from entering the very country that gave their family sanctuary when they most needed it.
posted by ChuraChura to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 7:34 AM
52 users marked this as a favorite

One weird hack to rule them all

Did you struggle for years with a particular problem, only to suddenly find a solution that made the problem essentially go away? Tell me about it!
posted by peacheater to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 9:37 AM
50 users marked this as a favorite

How on earth do I make a slick slide deck?

I got a freelance gig with a very prestigious consultancy, and will need to give a presentation with an approx. 20-slide deck. This is embarrassing, but somehow I've gotten through life with having used PowerPoint exactly once in the most elemental way. I don't know how to make the most out of PowerPoint or Keynote- I would say I barely even have basic proficiency- and I have no sense of how to really put together a dynamo presentation (this is a design consultancy, so they'll be used to really slick visuals).
posted by foxy_hedgehog to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 14 at 9:41 AM
49 users marked this as a favorite

Until You Come Back to Us

Aretha Franklin died today at 76 from complications due to pancreatic cancer. Beginning singing at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, she went "secular" in 1960 with Capitol Records, but her fame took off in 1967 with Atlantic, where she would record such hits as "Respect", "Natural Woman", and "Think". She signed with Arista in 1979 and appeared in "The Blues Brothers" in 1980. Among her many standout moments, one that was surprising and immensely memorable was her 1998 Grammy performance of "Nessun Dorma", filling in for Pavarotti. She had 18 Grammies, 75 million record sales, and was the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (in 1987). Rest in peace.
posted by WCityMike to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 7:40 AM
49 users marked this as a favorite

Strong in the Real Way

I think that the stars have really aligned. I think that it’s my team, it’s the fact that we were all so dedicated to telling honest stories and to just fighting and fighting to get this material through and make it so entertaining that you could never deny how sweet and thoughtful and entertaining it is that there’s just no way to say no. Rebecca Sugar on Steven Universe and LGBTQ representation. Stephen Universe just had a history making same sex marriage in a kids cartoon and has recently had a movie announced.
posted by Artw to MetaFilter on Aug 15 at 3:41 PM
47 users marked this as a favorite

Tea, cake, sandwiches, more tea, more cake, more tea, nookie: England

This week is National Afternoon Tea (not High Tea) Week. But what is Afternoon Tea? It can be simple (scones, jam, cream, tea) or elegant or expensive. There are do's and dont's. It's not this, or this, and just c'mon, but is found in Yorkshire or Bolton or Liverpool or London or Belfast or (suspended reality) Harrogate or the Falklands or far from Britain. Some options, and more and some more - and one to reignite the English class war. The tea can be red and the food can be based around chocolate or a Dundee cake or dim sum or fish or of course gin or fruit or Harry Potter, or be for dogs, or be oh not again served by hipsters. Or, you could make your own, perhaps a healthy option, or construct one at Ikea. May attract criminals or Her Majesty. Clothing optional.
posted by Wordshore to MetaFilter on Aug 13 at 3:02 PM
46 users marked this as a favorite

We need to talk about your TPS reports.

"Bullshit jobs are ones where the person doing them secretly believes that if the job (or even sometimes the entire industry) were to disappear, it would make no difference [to society] — or perhaps, as in the case of say telemarketers, lobbyists, or many corporate law firms, the world would be a better place." Imagining a World With No Bullshit Jobs
posted by AFABulous to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 11:53 AM
44 users marked this as a favorite

"They keep their kitten-songs for us"

WHAT CATS KNOW ABOUT HUMANS: A THREAD A short Twitter thread that may resonate if you live with a cat.
posted by Lexica to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 8:49 PM
44 users marked this as a favorite


An educator's take on her brother and boys like him. First person essay. [CW: DV, animal cruelty]
posted by k8t to MetaFilter on Aug 11 at 10:52 PM
43 users marked this as a favorite

Forgotten Women


Popular Comments

"he likes the concept that employees are incentivised to stay with the employer because of the fear of losing health insurance" That's literally evil. [view]
posted by kevinbelt to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 6:41 AM
145 users marked this as a favorite

It’s almost as if it’s a terrible idea to cross professional boundaries with people over whom you have power, because they may not feel like they can tell you when they don’t like it. What a fascinating new idea that we haven’t all been discussing for like the past 40 years. Gosh, maybe consent gets complicated when there are unequal power... [more]
posted by ArbitraryAndCapricious to MetaFilter on Aug 14 at 8:11 PM
144 users marked this as a favorite

If every professor who tried to fuck a student lost their jobs and the apologists who cover for the student-fuckers lost their jobs, it would be a good start. (and suddenly, there were enough jobs for all the graduating phds...) [view]
posted by kaibutsu to MetaFilter on Aug 14 at 9:27 PM
137 users marked this as a favorite

If women preferentially bought clothes with pockets, and poorly rated or returned clothes for lack of pockets, designers and retailers would shift to meet demand. I'm trying really hard not to be sarcastic here, so I'll just say that you don't really have any idea what you're talking about. [view]
posted by Squeak Attack to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 3:29 PM
133 users marked this as a favorite

Producer Ken Ehrlich, from his book, on Aretha's 1998 "Nessum Dorma" performance: "OK, if that's what you want." Those words, spoken very quietly by Aretha Franklin in a cramped, hot, fourth-floor dressing room at Radio City Music Hall, on the night of the 40th Annual Grammy Awards, are the closest I can come to answering... [more]
posted by WCityMike to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 8:09 AM
122 users marked this as a favorite

Things I've learned from working with poor people for 14 years: --poor people are working as hard as or harder than the people demonizing them, even if they aren't currently engaged in paid work --applying for and staying on currently existing benefits programs is work, and very time-consuming --applying for and staying on currently existing... [more]
posted by Mavri to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 8:12 AM
116 users marked this as a favorite

. Thank you for including her performance at the Kennedy Center. It brings tears to my eyes. As the New Yorker describes it: Aretha comes out onstage looking like the fanciest church lady in Christendom: fierce red lipstick, floor-length mink, a brocaded pink-and-gold dress that Bessie Smith would have worn if she’d sold tens of millions of... [more]
posted by spaet to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 7:46 AM
112 users marked this as a favorite

"Dear Boss, This message is my notice of resignation. My last day will be $lastday. Thank you, ninazer0" No more, no less. [view]
posted by Anticipation Of A New Lover's Arrival, The to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 11 at 5:21 PM
106 users marked this as a favorite

rokusan, the classic John Rogers quote explains the phenomenon: "There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood,... [more]
posted by Zonker to MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 4:54 AM
103 users marked this as a favorite

A hefty, steel, flask of tea is a useful weapon to hit a burglar with, in a residential street of a rural English market town in the middle of the night. You can also then drink the tea (which will keep you warm) as you sit on the dazed and complaining robber so he doesn't run away while you wait for the police to turn up. No I did not offer him... [more]
posted by Wordshore to MetaTalk on Aug 10 at 3:01 PM
101 users marked this as a favorite

What's there to understand? The political dialogue has changed in the west. The rentier class has succeeded in returning racists into a strong enough monolithic plurality (the hidden-in-plain-sight single issue voter who refuses to admit what their single issue is) that they are the lynchpin of any winning coalition. It's going like gangbusters in... [more]
posted by tclark to MetaFilter on Aug 11 at 10:39 AM
95 users marked this as a favorite

If every professor who tried to fuck a student lost their jobs and the apologists who cover for the student-fuckers lost their jobs, it would be a good start. [view]
posted by tclark to MetaFilter on Aug 14 at 8:18 PM
89 users marked this as a favorite

Man, this is a really incisive skewering of the entitlement and anxiety of older generations. A+ satire... wait what... it's serious? Oh. [view]
posted by runcibleshaw to MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 7:51 PM
87 users marked this as a favorite

No, because any tattoo artist who would work on someone underage is not an artist who should be working on anyone in any remotely professional capacity. Look, I have a ton of tattoos with plenty more in the plans, so I super-feel your kid. That sounds like a great tattoo that will, even if she moves away from those interests in the future, mark... [more]
posted by kalimac to Ask MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 5:35 PM
86 users marked this as a favorite

I have a brother kind of like this. Not like this, but like this. Mine went in for tormenting people rather than animals, but I recognize the malovelent joy in making other people miserable, the disregard for other people's belongings, let alone their feelings, the ability to twist things until I'd find myself wondering if maybe somehow I... [more]
posted by mishafletch to MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 4:11 AM
86 users marked this as a favorite

"This food tastes terrible." "Just turn your tongue off and relax." [view]
posted by Faint of Butt to MetaFilter on Aug 15 at 12:16 PM
84 users marked this as a favorite

Liftoff is currently scheduled for Sunday, Aug 12 at 3:31am EDT. now how the hell do they ever expect it to get to the sun when they're launching it at night? dumbasses [view]
posted by pyramid termite to MetaFilter on Aug 11 at 6:27 PM
79 users marked this as a favorite

I saw this this morning and found it incredibly moving. I am thrilled for Katie that she gets this chance, in awe of the surgical skill involved and the dedication of the caregivers, and profoundly stirred by the grandmother's generosity in choosing to arrange the donation of her granddaughter's face. There is so much to be held onto here, in a... [more]
posted by adamgreenfield to MetaFilter on Aug 16 at 7:39 AM
77 users marked this as a favorite

So there's a town here in Southern Ontario called Guelph. This town was founded in 1827 by a Scottish fellow named John Galt, in fact they celebrate a "John Galt Day". So every time I've heard over the years the question "Who is John Galt", particularly in university, uttered with such intense conviction that I've enjoyed... [more]
posted by Ashwagandha to MetaFilter on Aug 12 at 8:03 AM
77 users marked this as a favorite

SOLIDARITY, NOT CHARITY. I feel like I have experienced some limited form of ad-hoc UBI over the past two years with the combination of free/work trade for rent, access to a really good food bank, a little ongoing help from a friend who knows who they are and access to full state Medicaid insurance. (And it's still a surprising amount of work.)... [more]
posted by loquacious to MetaFilter on Aug 10 at 9:37 AM
76 users marked this as a favorite