FAQ on Coronavirus and Mefi: check before posting, cite sources; how to block content by tags

If you believe in 5G conspiracy theories but aren't comfortable committing arson, there is an alternative - a device which claims to protect against the 'negative health effects' of 5G. It's a USB stick and it retails for £339 (three hundred and thirty-nine pounds sterling). [more inside]
2 likes 2 comments 224 repins

Happy birthday to Siouxsie Sioux, one of the Queens of British Pop* (docu offline currently, clip on Siouxsie), from her start as a member of the Bromley Contingent alongside the Sex Pistols, who she played alongside in 1976, as seen in the London Weekend Show, to a big send-off show in 2008 when her style and sound was much less of a riot, and more of the moody and ethereal end of goth/alt rock. [more inside]
29 likes 6 comments 822 repins

11 likes 42 comments 553 repins

Marga Griesbach, 92, made it through the Holocaust, and set off for a cruise around the world in February.
15 likes 9 comments 192 repins

Mercator: Extreme, by Drew Roos. “A single map encompassing the entire surface of the Earth, yet containing both human scale and global scale.” [more inside]
21 likes 6 comments 373 repins

Just how many people are in this random picture in the 1940 film, "The Great McGinty"? It takes a bit of research.
15 likes 10 comments 495 repins

7 likes 8 comments 328 repins

The Aromas of Trees: Five Practices. A set of invitations for sensing trees at Emergence Magazine by David G. Haskell, author of The Songs of Trees: Stories from Nature’s Great Connectors.
We begin at home: "Coffee. Pencil shavings. Almond milk. Honey laden with aromatic memories of tree nectar and pollen. Inhale, and remember that we live in the forest, even when this truth is hidden from the eye." [more inside]
13 likes 2 comments 966 repins

11 likes 10 comments 902 repins

What is Roam Research and why are researchers and writers losing their minds over this note-taking/knowledge management/productivity app based on Zettelkasten and still in closed beta? [more inside]
29 likes 25 comments 557 repins

Demo-2 is go for propellant load. At T-45 minutes, the signal was given to start the propellant load and start on a new era of commercial space transportation. For the first time in nine years, a crewed spacecraft will launch from American soil.
8 likes 47 comments 948 repins

6 likes 14 comments 995 repins

Matt Stoller writes about Varsity Brands, and its stranglehold on cheerleading: "The most unpopular extractive arrangement for many of its contests is “Stay to Play,” where non-local teams must book a high-priced Varsity-approved hotel to play in the competition. Staying with a friend or a cheaper place gets a team kicked out of the tournament, and the gym owner fined. These tactics inflated prices in the primary market for cheer competitions, and in the secondary market of apparel and equipment. They also just make cheerleading less fun, or as one person told me, they “kill the spirit of cheer.” [more inside]
13 likes 11 comments 911 repins

Wholesome Games Direct 2020 [YouTube][37:09][Trailers & Showcase] “A digital games showcase called the Wholesome Games Direct aired yesterday, dedicated to cute and colorful games. It put the spotlight on over 50 upcoming indie games that run the gamut from train sims to augmented reality adventures. Games showcased will be playable on a variety of gaming platforms.”
16 likes 3 comments 379 repins

Bending Lines: Maps and Data from Distortion to Deception "Instead of ranking maps on a linear spectrum with “true and objective” on one side, and “false and biased” on the other, Bending Lines instead encourages you to pay attention to the social, cultural, and political context in which every act of communication is situated. Just because every map is distorted in some way or another doesn’t mean that it’s no longer possible to speak about honesty and accuracy. Thinking carefully about motivations, meaning, persuasion, and presentation helps us to construct trust in an informed, critical manner." from the Boston Public Library's Leventhal Map Center
22 likes 1 comment 550 repins

Anti-fascist news site Unicorn Riot has 2 hours of raw footage taken at the scene of last night's protest of the police killing of George Floyd. @TheQueerCrimer was live-tweeting police radio broadcasts. It's Going Down has a good summary article of what happened. Four officers present at the killing have been fired. What we know about Derek Chauvin and Tou Thao, two of the officers caught on tape, including info about their previous use-of-force incidents, one of which resulted in a $25,000 out-of-court settlement. [more inside]
24 likes 177 comments 655 repins

I quickly ducked into my bedroom closet, grabbed a small wooden hut filled with 60 buzzing bees, and returned to the group. Sitting under a floor lamp, I used a pair of long, delicate tweezers to grab a squirming insect, then asked Risha to pull up her sweater and straighten out her back. Using the knuckle of my thumb to measure one inch from Risha’s spine, I carefully placed the bee to her skin and gave it a light tap. As the tiny barbed stinger went in, Risha inhaled sharply and I slowly counted to 10. I scraped out the stinger with my fingernail, then turned to my guests, who had come to my house to learn about using live bee stings as a treatment for Lyme disease. “Who’s next?” The Secret Society of Self-Stingers (Narratively)
10 likes 29 comments 473 repins

General Electric exits the lightbulb business after finally finding a buyer for its lighting unit and will be selling off its last consumer-facing business after more than 120 years of operation. The lighting business is GE's oldest segment, dating all the way back to the company's founding through a series of mergers with Thomas Edison's companies in the late 1880s and early 1890s. [more inside]
6 likes 26 comments 478 repins

Alcohol Funnycar wrote and recorded the song "Someday" from separate homes. The music video shows masked musicians Ben London and Tommy Simpson (separately) visiting Seattle music venues and a lot of pandemic murals & messages.
0 likes 0 comments 104 repins

17 likes 19 comments 970 repins

[The 100 Hour Board] is a BYU online forum of volunteer students who answer any question they are asked within 100 hours. It is also a place where diverse personalities can interact in a forum relatively free of a social judgments, a place where sensitive and personal questions can be addressed anonymously and given doctrinally-centered answers by a group of caring peers, and a place to learn the history of the billboard, how many pages a Word document will hold, and how to get a locker in the RB locker room. It's funny, friendly, and fascinating.
Qualifications and Requirements [to answer] · Current Aliases
Question Archive · Quote Archive · Podcast Archive
Popular Questions
10 likes 10 comments 699 repins

A subreddit devoted to birds taking public transit. In case you were missing your usual commute.
19 likes 14 comments 246 repins

Starting in January, Mongolia executed a perfect public health response, and they have never let up the pressure since. COVID-19 did not just leave Mongolia alone. Mongolia kicked its ass. COVID Underdogs: Mongolia by Indi Samarajiva
56 likes 33 comments 535 repins

Officials say rats have resorted to open warfare and eating their young as closures reduce edible waste. “Many of these rats in our cities depend on their nightly food, which is the restaurants and hotels and bars and doughnut shops and everything that we consume on the go,” rodentologist Bobby Corrigan told The Washington Post.
8 likes 58 comments 590 repins

The coronavirus pandemic has inspired a grassroots movement that is connecting people who need help with donors who can offer financial assistance. So far, contributors have passed $13 million through more than 100,000 matches. Shelly Tygielski came up with the idea that she named Pandemic of Love. […] "As the pandemic started, I started to see the fear bubble up on my social media feeds and from friends," Tygielski told CNN. "I wanted to turn from this environment of fear to an opportunity for us to create connection, community and strengthen the bonds of love between us."
10 likes 10 comments 162 repins

Eaters Of The Earth - "Phosphate rock allowed farmers to stop using manure fertilizer, kicking us into the modern era of agriculture. But those who live near the mining industry’s epicenter fear its huge towers of radioactive sludge will pour into their backyards." [more inside]
16 likes 10 comments 314 repins

Steve Buscemi has seen it all. He was hit by a car and a bus as a kid, was once stabbed in a bar fight, volunteered as a firefighter during 9/11, and somewhere along the way became one of the most accomplished film actors of his generation. And then tragedy struck: In 2019, Buscemi lost his wife of over 30 years. In a rare interview, Hollywood's most beloved misfit opens up about anxiety, loss, and the hard work of getting through it all. [SL GQ]
41 likes 50 comments 878 repins

Quemoy or Kinmen County (Wikipedia) is two groups of islands governed by the Republic of China and located just off the southeastern coast of mainland China. In the late 1960s, Taiwan made use of this proximity (Google maps) to set up four structures to reach out to mainland China. One of the remaining structures is a 30-foot-tall concrete block, honeycombed with 48 large holes with a speaker inside each (Google streetview panorama). The Beishan Broadcast Station was used to blast anticommunist messages across the Taiwan Strait, from Kinmen into China (Atlas Obscura). Now it is periodically used at a much lower volume (YouTube). [more inside]
9 likes 3 comments 700 repins

Minecraft Dungeons [YouTube][Launch Trailer] “Minecraft Dungeons, out May 26 on Xbox One, PS4, Switch, and PC (where I’ve been playing it), takes Minecraft’s characters and blocky aesthetic and maps it onto an isometric dungeon crawler where you mash cooldown abilities while running through mob-infested forests, swamps, and volcanic caves. The story sees you save a village from malevolent forces, but really the goal is to kill lots of stuff, get stronger loot, and then kill even more stuff.” [via: Kotaku] [more inside]
8 likes 28 comments 36 repins

15 likes 6 comments 886 repins

Former Army sergeant Peter Sessum explains why not to thank vets for their service on Memorial Day, and why he's cool with BBQing and online deal-hunting ("a sound military strategy").
20 likes 21 comments 93 repins

Given these days and these times, I found myself this weekend listening to Henryk Górecki's Symphony No. 3 "Symphony of sorrowful songs". (27m, 10m, 17m, 54m total) The opening movement was rather famous for a while when this 1992 recording was released and a BBC DJ played the full movement even though it was outside of the station's format. (Or so the urban legend goes.). It's a slowly building ocean of grief, a central wail, and then gradual decline. My heart was happy to have it tonight. [more inside]
28 likes 13 comments 121 repins

History’s first draft is almost always wrong — but we still have to try and write it. "This year has been a blur, but I remember one day clearly: Sunday, March 8. It was the last day I ate at a restaurant, the last day I went to a concert (Red Baraat at the Sinclair in Cambridge, Mass.) and the last day I hugged a friend. It was also the first time I thought that I should begin writing about what was going on." Teju Cole opens his COVID-19 diary to all.
30 likes 30 comments 862 repins

Stacie Ponder of Final Girl, a blog from Portland, ME and Anthony Hudson of Queer Horror, a film series in Portland, OR, together are The Gaylords of Darkness. Most weeks, they discuss a horror movie from the ridiculous to the sublime with a mix of queerness, feminism, enthusiasm, frantic humor, and running jokes. Occasionally they discuss non-horror films. Quite frequently, they discuss Susperia (2018).
11 likes 5 comments 286 repins

Library of Congress app lets you make hip hop with century-old samples (Engadget): "The US Library of Congress has unveiled Citizen DJ, a digital tool that allows you to remix sounds from its massive collection of film, television, video and sound recordings. It was created by "innovator in residence" Brian Foo to recapture the '80s and '90s golden age of hip-hop sampling." You can explore collections using the web interface, use a simple music-creation app to remix beats, and download "sample packs" with thousands of audio clips from a particular collection that can be used in most music production software. Explainer video (Vimeo). See also: Library of Congress Needs a Few Citizen DJs (LOC)
71 likes 16 comments 221 repins

In backyards around the world, a vicious resource war is being fought between the avians and the rodents. Are you tired of standing idly by? Do you prefer the lilt of birdsong to the screech and chatter of tree-rats? Then perhaps you should look at the latest in birdfeeder anti-squirrel technology: an extensive, squirrel-scale backyard obstacle course created by YouTube science guy Mark Rober (previously). The results may surprise you. They definitely won't.
21 likes 40 comments 297 repins

3Blue1Brown known for beautiful visualizations of complex mathematical topics gives a go at livestreaming high-school level math with a 'Lockdown math' series. Brush up on things you probably forgot from math class. [more inside]
62 likes 13 comments 791 repins

According to a 2015 profile in Venture Beat, Star Stable Entertainment broke a lot of rules when it launched (in 2011, according to various sources other than Venture Beat). "It created an online horse game, Star Stable, for girls and young women. It charged a subscription fee and built its own game engine. And it stayed online rather than diving into mobile with a million other competitors." [more inside]
27 likes 22 comments 749 repins

From homeless refugee to chess prodigy, 9-year-old dreams of becoming youngest grandmaster. Follow up on a Nicholas Kristof story from last year on M-F
10 likes 7 comments 506 repins

Zoom sucks, we started having editorial meetings in Red Dead Redemption [Rock Paper Shotgun] “Mostly we were just having a really crap time,” said Viv when I spoke to them, about their meeting life before Cowboys. “We were having to deal with all those Zoom and Skype meetings and emails and phone calls… and we were just feeling worse and worse and more annoyed all the time.” Minecraft was considered, apparently, but people tended to just wander off and start digging, or dumping gravel on the meeting table, “so picking the most ludicrous game to meet in seemed good.” But then, as it turned out, it wasn’t quite as ridiculous as expected. “The thing is,” Viv explained, “the Cowboys just look right when they’re sitting around the campfire? They look like they’re in a meeting: scratching noses and frowning, and occasionally gesturing.”
32 likes 37 comments 516 repins

I feel like you’re in a safe place, your own bubble of coziness. All forts, according to fort expert David Sobel, share common traits: They are handmade, somewhat secretive and “you can look out, but others can’t see in.” They are safe — physically and emotionally. “It’s your place where you want to be just you, observing but unseen,” he says. One fort-builder comments, “Everything is wrong right now, but it’s a safe space where no one worries about you...if you locked yourself in your room, people would worry, but if you hide in your fort all day, no worries.”
17 likes 24 comments 26 repins

[Content Warning: death, suicide, self-harm] Last week was a tragic one in the world of professional wrestling, with former WWE wrestler Shad Gaspard giving his own life to save his son from drowning and second-generation joshi star Hana Kimura dying of suicide. Between Gaspard and Kimura's death, Vice on TV aired the last episode of the second season of Dark Side of the Ring, which told the story of the death of Owen Hart live on pay-per-view on May 23rd, 1999. Colette Arrand notes, "there are few forms of art and entertainment that breed tragedy at the same rate as professional wrestling." [more inside]
7 likes 10 comments 418 repins

Humorous mistranslationfilter, SLT - Twitter user @vladadraws had an appeal to her followers yesterday: "So my mother's friend's husband is stuck in a hotel in Saudi Arabia and this is the order menu they gave him, Do I have any Arabic speaking followers that can help make sense of this?" The Arabic-to-English translations on said menu are....unconventional. [more inside]
26 likes 37 comments 931 repins

Before there was a viral crisis whose reality forced itself on our notice, there were reports of declines of life expectancy in America, rising rates of suicide, and other “deaths of despair.” This is surely evidence of another crisis, though it was rarely described as such. The novel coronavirus has the potential for mitigation, treatment, and ultimately prevention. But a decline in hope and purpose is a crisis of civilization requiring reflection and generous care for the good of the whole society and its place in the world. We have been given the grounds and opportunity to do some very basic thinking. Marilynne Robinson, The New York Review
23 likes 5 comments 443 repins

Giant Military Cats, a Twitter account. Just giant cats with military hardware and/or in military scenes.
11 likes 12 comments 76 repins

David took his first sip of warm, flat Pepsi about eight years ago at a Christmas party. As bored 12-years-olds are wont to do, he recalls “constantly fiddling around” with his Pepsi bottle the entire night, to the point that the soda lost all carbonation and turned into syrup-y sugar water. Still, he swigged away nonetheless. “I enjoyed the taste so much more, and the carbonation didn’t upset my stomach or burn my eyes and throat,” he says. The Absolute Masochists Who Love Drinking Flat Soda (Quinn Myers, MEL Magazine)
7 likes 109 comments 771 repins

Richard Scarry's classic What Do People Do All Day, further revised to reflect our current societal roles in The New Now. | Sanctioned Revisions to Richard Scarry texts previously on MeFi
41 likes 28 comments 684 repins

The Museum of Ridiculously Interesting Things is the blog of curator and art historian, Dr. Chelsea Nichols. The collection includes such treasures as sexy weasels in Renaissance art, how to scare children in the 1920s, and hidden mothers in Victorian portraits. There are also occasional guest posts, on topics including Ivan Bilibin’s Illustrations of Russian folklore by Claire Atwater, Robert Liston, a surgeon and a showman by Mike Crump, and a make-your-own-bat-colony activity sheet by Alice Fennessy.
57 likes 14 comments 182 repins

13 likes 3 comments 872 repins

Merle Oberon’s Remarkable Life. "In 1935, Merle Oberon became the first biracial actress to be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar, an incredible achievement in then-segregated Hollywood -- except that nobody in Hollywood knew Oberon was biracial. Born in Bombay into abject poverty in 1911, Oberon's fate seemed sealed in her racist colonial society. But a series of events, lies, men, and an obsession with controlling her own image -- even if it meant bleaching her own skin -- changed Oberon's path forever." [more inside]
30 likes 5 comments 409 repins