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The Mother of All Demos turns 50

On December 9, 1968, Douglas Engelbart gave a demo of NLS, the "oN-Line System", to the Fall Joint Computer Conference of the ACM and IEEE. Later dubbed The Mother of All Demos, it demonstrated many concepts that would later become fundamental elements of personal computing, including the mouse, windows, hypertext, graphics, video conferencing, and word processing.
posted by ckape to MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 3:45 PM
81 users marked this as a favorite


Dimensions.Guide is a comprehensive and beautiful database of dimensioned drawings documenting the standard measurements and sizes of all kinds of objects and spaces.
posted by Foci for Analysis to MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 10:51 AM
78 users marked this as a favorite

Intersectional sustainable crop science, and GIFs

Liminal: Sigur Rós as a living, breathing eco-system

Welcome to Liminal. Liminal is an ‘endless’ Sigur Rós ambient playlist which is live today [May 8, 2018], brought to you by Jónsi, Alex Somers and Paul Corley. It will be built over linear time into a never-finished project. Albums will be released, volumes added to. Liminal, both live and locally, takes the listener to a place neither here nor there; a “liminal" space. Liminal + Liminal 2 + Liminal 3 = approximately 3 hours of ambient "chill-out" music from Iceland, both original compositions and remixes of works by this trio and others.
posted by filthy light thief to MetaFilter on Dec 8 at 2:11 PM
60 users marked this as a favorite

Rejoice Greatly indeed

Trinidadian soprano Jeanine DeBique performs 'Rejoice greatly' from Messiah (SLYT) People are gagging over her ability to accurately and gorgeously render the challenging coloratura of this piece at near breakneck speed, with such warmth and expression. Her slow sections are equally beautiful. At the 2:25 mark, her use of straight tone is devastating. DeBique is in a class by herself.
posted by I_Love_Bananas to MetaFilter on Dec 14 at 3:25 AM
58 users marked this as a favorite

"I'm confused, I'm not sure where to go, but I know my door is blue"

"We had a traffic jam of wheelchairs and walkers because everyone was so excited to come and see how the doors were going to turn out." Trying to find their own room among identical beige doors can be confusing and stressful for care home residents with dementia. Some memory care facilities are trying a new approach: large decals that transform each featureless beige door into the distinctive front door of a real house. The decals are based on the final art school thesis of Marieke van Diepen, who worked with a social development organization to figure out how to use the door decals to help people with dementia. The Amsterdam-based company even offers custom decals based on the actual front door of a person's former home.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 10:25 AM
58 users marked this as a favorite

Unexpected item in the bagging area

This was the day Parliament was supposed to have its "meaningful vote" on the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated between the UK government and the EU - a supposedly "soft Brexit" that is anything but. But Theresa "Contempt of Parliament" May has postponed the vote, supposedly to renegotiate the backstop designed to prevent a reemergence of a hard border on the island of Ireland, possibly to "focus minds" by running down the clock (108 days and ticking), and possibly because she seriously believes that cherry-picking is still possible. The EU's response is that the Withdrawal Agreement and its backstop are as good as they will get.
posted by rory to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 2:41 AM
57 users marked this as a favorite

Why Are So Many People Suddenly Allergic to Meat?

More and more people are becoming allergic to mammal meat, and worryingly, mammal products such as cheese, wool, and even the gelatin in pill capsules “This increasingly common sensitivity seems to result from a certain type of tick bite. The fact that we’ve figured that out is the result of some amazing coincidences in scientific research.” It’s called an Alpha-Gal allergy, and due to climate change, it’s becoming a problem worldwide.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 2:23 PM
55 users marked this as a favorite

Story-driven podcast recs

I need some new podcasts. I like non-fiction story-driven podcasts--especially non-narrated documentaries. I don't typically like the "two people talking to each other" type podcasts. I like most topics, but especially history and local flavor. Examples under the cut. What do you recommend?
posted by OrangeDisk to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 7:33 PM
52 users marked this as a favorite

“a violence that continues to dehumanize and perpetuate racist ideas...”

Red Dead Redemption 2's Redface Proves How Far Games Haven't Come [Paste Magazine] “It’s nearly the end of 2018, and I have to write an article about blackface and redface in Red Dead Redemption 2. That sucks. It sucks, because it means no one bothered to interrogate the casting. It sucks, because I know the pushback I’ll get for being the one to call out readily apparent racism in a game that opened to $725 million in sales. It sucks, because we’re still having to have conversations about why the perpetuation of racist stereotypes and the dehumanization of people of color is bad. It sucks, because didn’t we just do this with Uncharted: The Lost Legacy? And it sucks, because I hoped maybe we could do better than Charles, and as a Native woman who got her start pleading with games journalists and developers to do better, I wouldn’t need to keep writing these articles.”
posted by Fizz to MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 10:49 AM
51 users marked this as a favorite


Population Mountains

What stands out is each city’s form, a unique mountain that might be like the steep peaks of lower Manhattan or the sprawling hills of suburban Atlanta. When I first saw a city in 3D, I had a feel for its population size that I had never experienced before. 1000 words from Matt Daniels at The Pudding with lots of images.
posted by cgc373 to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 10:01 AM
49 users marked this as a favorite

Amazon Warehouse Workers in Staten Island Go Public With Unionizing Push

Employees at a newly-opened Amazon warehouse in Staten Island went public with a campaign to unionize last night. In the face of the company’s hyper-aggressive, global anti-union campaign, the new push is a pretty huge development for workers in other parts of the country—and other Amazon-owned companies like Whole Foods. The Staten Island employees’ complaints are familiar—mainly, that Amazon treats them like shit for not enough money.
posted by Major Matt Mason Dixon to MetaFilter on Dec 12 at 8:34 AM
47 users marked this as a favorite

We Don't Wants It

Andy Serkis joins the debate on Brexit by expressing Theresa May's inner Gollum. (slyt)
posted by Eleven to MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 9:55 AM
47 users marked this as a favorite

Where do you do your online shopping besides Amazon?

I buy pretty much everything from Amazon, as do most people I know. But during this season of shopping and gift-giving, I've been feeling like I want to see what else is out there. So... where else and what else do you like to buy online? Also important with online shopping -- how good is their customer service/return policy?
posted by thelasttango to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 1:17 PM
46 users marked this as a favorite

Black Grooves

Black Grooves is a monthly online music magazine highlighting the latest releases - often reissues of classic, underground, lost or simply underrated albums - by black musicians. It is edited by the staff at Indiana University's Archives of African American Music and Culture (AAAMC).
posted by nightrecordings to MetaFilter on Dec 8 at 12:17 PM
45 users marked this as a favorite

To Protect Migrants From Police, a Dutch Church Service Never Ends

Under an obscure Dutch law, police may not disrupt a church service to make an arrest. And so for the past six weeks, immigration officials have been unable to enter Bethel Church to seize the five members of the Tamrazyan family, Armenian refugees who fled to the sanctuary to escape a deportation order. The service, which began in late October as a little-noticed, last-gasp measure by a small group of local ministers, is now a national movement, attracting clergy members and congregants from villages and cities across the Netherlands. More than 550 pastors from about 20 denominations have rotated through Bethel Church, a nonstop service all in the name of protecting one vulnerable family. (SLNYT)
posted by DirtyOldTown to MetaFilter on Dec 14 at 11:48 AM
44 users marked this as a favorite

People are emailing trees

Melbourne City Council gave 70,000 trees an email address so that people could report on the health of the trees. But they have now received over 4,000 emails to the trees, including 'love letters, existential queries and sometimes just bad puns'.
posted by AnnaRat to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 12:56 PM
44 users marked this as a favorite

Confederate monuments and their legacy

The uncertain new world of labour

New world of work leaves 'precariat' living on edge [Reuters] - "In 1997, Pierre Bourdieu[1] argued that the 'precariousness' of modern work was a big problem. The French intellectual claimed that the decline of secure jobs and clear career paths led to 'the destruction of existence … to the degradation of every relationship with the world, time, and space'. Everyone, he said, was affected, because no one could escape the fear of being rendered precarious." (previously)
posted by kliuless to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 5:49 AM
43 users marked this as a favorite


Popular Comments

Your dad is not stupid (presumably). He is doing this on purpose, has done this to other people, and is now doing it to your husband and child. Mispronouncing names like this, or giving people English names, is a not-so-subtle sign of Othering. It is 100% racist and 100% not ok. I'm sorry your dad is behaving in this racist manner and that you are... [more]
posted by basalganglia to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 10 at 6:42 AM
184 users marked this as a favorite

'Dad, one day your granddaughter is going to ask us why her grandfather never says her name right, and why he never says her father's name right either. What do you want us to tell her?' I agree with the other commenters about making sure he doesn't really have some auditory or language issues that he's covering up for. But if it turns out he's... [more]
posted by trig to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 10 at 6:46 AM
111 users marked this as a favorite

permatemps are such a bullshit practice. I worked at Microsoft when they rolled out the compulsory limit on temp positions (something like 12 months in a position, then three months away from MS before taking any new position?) and people everywhere instantly went into action because "oh my god my team would be screwed if this permatemp left,... [more]
posted by the agents of KAOS to MetaFilter on Dec 12 at 11:15 AM
104 users marked this as a favorite

This person is 100% full of shit. Disengage and don't think about it again. [view]
posted by clseace to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 9:16 AM
97 users marked this as a favorite

“Despite having the world’s 21st-largest GDP and a larger population than that of Australia, our flourishing multicultural society is internationally silenced and played as a pawn of superpower politics.” Living in Taiwan, I find this quote from the article extremely accurate. There is an insidiously persistent and successful effort from China... [more]
posted by Enkidude to MetaFilter on Dec 12 at 6:57 PM
95 users marked this as a favorite

This is not how grown-ups conduct relationships. There is a....a thing in our culture, a pattern that I observe in asks and in life, where people accept that it's normal for the woman to manage the man while the man tries to "be bad" and "escape" from her restrictions; a pattern where the man is incompetent and... [more]
posted by Frowner to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 6:25 AM
95 users marked this as a favorite

About a decade ago, while I was driving in a really desolate part of Wyoming in the winter, a horrid little ground blizzard struck with 40-60 mph winds. It was on one of those roads where you can't get RADIO reception let alone cell reception; the nearest "town" might be about 50 miles away and the mileage between towns with any kind of... [more]
posted by barchan to MetaTalk on Dec 8 at 4:20 PM
94 users marked this as a favorite

"I'm gonna... I'm gonna need some context for this friend. Because it is baffling." So cherry pits hold heat really well -- way better than rice or buckwheat -- and basically you get some all-cotton flannel and make some 16" x 6" "pillows" and fill them with cherry pits, and then nuke them for 2-3 minutes... [more]
posted by Eyebrows McGee to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 10:03 PM
92 users marked this as a favorite

I'm obviously not an Uber investor since I'm not a failson scion of any midcentury Superfund-site fortunes, but I think the value proposition is mainly that they think they can monopolize the rideshare market and jack prices up (and wages down) afterward. The possibility of self-driving cars reducing the cost of providing the service is just icing... [more]
posted by LiteOpera to MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 6:32 AM
91 users marked this as a favorite

About that appendicitis thread: that poster survived, according to our best evidence. They're not required to post a followup, and I'm not getting into more detail. But enough people have worried and asked about this over the years, that I feel like it's unkind and even a little deceptive to let people continue to think they died. [view]
posted by LobsterMitten to MetaTalk on Dec 11 at 7:58 AM
91 users marked this as a favorite

Yes! Opossums! God’s greatest gift! They act as a firebreak for rabies and they eat ticks for breakfast! And all they ask is for our trash. Opossums: the answer to all of life’s problems. [view]
posted by Homo neanderthalensis to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 5:01 PM
90 users marked this as a favorite

Hi. So we are rabbit people who live in the Boston area. Our previous three bunnies (Grendel, Robocop, and Dr. Beef Wellington) passed on a few years back (ages 13, 14, and 11 respectively) and we'd be willing to look into taking a new fuzzbutt family member. Our eight year old is willing to give up his toy bin so we can make space for an indoor... [more]
posted by robocop is bleeding to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 12 at 2:27 PM
89 users marked this as a favorite

This is a really worrying public health change. I have a friend with a similar condition, and it makes her life really difficult--especially since while vegan options can make her life easier in some ways, they don't necessarily watch out for the same things, and manufacturers often don't treat veganism as a potential allergen in the same way... [more]
posted by sciatrix to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 2:50 PM
85 users marked this as a favorite

You could make up a story about how we are being modified so as to be less dangerous to the biosphere. [view]
posted by ckridge to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 2:26 PM
85 users marked this as a favorite

We had an amazing time together and I can still tell you, after all this time that we have been apart, that he was and is the man of my dreams. The man who wanted to marry me on our 5-year anniversary. He was in debt, broke your heart, disappeared on you and strung you along for months. How is this the man of your dreams? Let me tell... [more]
posted by lunastellasol to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 9 at 2:35 AM
82 users marked this as a favorite

did a possum write that [view]
posted by cortex to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 5:15 PM
82 users marked this as a favorite

As a UK resident, I watch current French politics and think at least their political apocalypse has a bigger special effects budget [view]
posted by brilliantmistake to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 5:06 AM
81 users marked this as a favorite

Ok as a librarian I have to nitpick: There IS a term for this concept in PubMed. It's this entry here. They only create PubMed headings for an allergy and a disease together when there are significant number of published articles on that concept. The heading "shellfish hypersensitivity" (the term for shellfish allergy) wasn't... [more]
posted by holyrood to MetaFilter on Dec 13 at 3:10 PM
80 users marked this as a favorite

You don't ever have to like Christmas, but when you start talking about this "barely contained emotional response" and talking about your feelings in terms of anger, anxiety, and depression--I really, really think this is the kind of thing you need to see a therapist about. Therapy doesn't have to be about learning to conform to what... [more]
posted by Sequence to Ask MetaFilter on Dec 14 at 10:12 AM
79 users marked this as a favorite

I think destroying these memorials is a remarkably bad idea. The should be moved to museums dedicated to the remembrance of america's original sin, the American Holocaust, to remember the treasonous men and women who fought to keep others as property. The SPLC has identified more than seven hundred statues and memorials to Confederate... [more]
posted by Joe in Australia to MetaFilter on Dec 11 at 11:46 PM
78 users marked this as a favorite