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The Opposite of Forecasting (by metafilter's own lownote) is a streaming radio station that turns weather data from Austin, Texas into music. "The resulting music reacts to a number of atmospheric conditions, including the temperature, humidity, rainfall, wind angle, wind speed, barometric pressure, UV, and solar radiation." It's also just really catchy! [via mefi projects]
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The ancient cedars of Lebanon have outlived empires and survived modern wars. Clinging to shrinking patches of territory, these trees stand for Lebanon’s resilience. Now, global warming could finish them off.
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In 1993, before the magical girl anime Sailor Moon was released in the U.S., there was an alternate vision for it. It was an American vision. A total remake of the show with Saturday morning-style animation, intercut with footage of real-life, all-American high school teens.
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In 2017, Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired in San Francisco launched the Holman Prize to support the emerging adventurousness and can-do spirit of blind and low vision people worldwide. One of the winners was Ahmet Ustenel who is about to pull off his prize winning proposal to cross the Bosphorus in a kayak, solo. His story is fascinating, and so are the stories of the other winners.
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Star Wars: The Clone Wars. [YouTube][Trailer] “Today at the 10-year anniversary San Diego Comic-Con panel for Star Wars: The Clone Wars, fans were hit with news they couldn’t have seen coming even from a galaxy far, far away — after an abrupt ending, Dave Filoni’s CG animated series will return for one last season on Disney’s new streaming service.” [via: Polygon]
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'November Rain' is the oldest music video with a billion YouTube views. What does that mean? [more inside]
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Chemistry and Artificial Intelligence can give you all possible outcomes Chemistry coupled with Artificial Intelligence builds a robot that can give all possible outcomes/results from self analysis.
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Hollywood home for sale. Perfect for large family with housekeeper, dog*. Space for a live-in cousin. Attic can be converted to bedroom for your oldest girl boy. Not actually haunted, but there might be an occasional UFO sighting. Space in backyard for clubhouse(s) or boat restoration. Spacious living room suitable for building houses of cards. [more inside]
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Are you bored of your book club? Do you love old dos games? Why not try out the Dos Game Club! [more inside]
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A visit with photos to Max Gate, the house that Thomas Hardy built in 1885 and lived in for the rest of his life. Half his novels and most of his poetry was written there.
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40 years ago, Shenzhen (Wikipedia) was a quiet market town (China Underground) of 30,000 people on the route of the Kowloon–Canton Railway. That changed (China Daily then-and-now gallery) in 1979 when Shenzhen was promoted to city-status and in 1980 designated China’s first Special Economic Zone (SEZ), as part of the institution of the policy of "reform and opening" (The Diplomat) in late 1979 when the SEZ was established. Its rapid growth is thanks to foreign investments (Kaizen Corporate Services ltd.) and technology. Letter from Shenzhen -- Chinese tech isn’t an imitation of its American counterpart. It’s a completely different universe. (Xiaowei R. Wang for Logic Mag.) [more inside]
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“Key to municipalism is the concept of “predistribution”. The idea is that, rather than attempting to correct malign economic outcomes through redistributive taxes and benefits, government and civil society can get it right the first time by inscribing better outcomes within the economy itself. These common forms of ownership spread democracy beyond the ballot box and challenge the idea that the economy is a realm for technocrats rather than citizens.... In Spain, however, governments are already getting to work rolling back waves of privatisation and building economic democracy within neoliberal urban landscapes. If municipalism is the key to cities built on broad-based ownership and democratic control, then examining how it has worked elsewhere – what knowledge can be borrowed, what theories should be drawn upon, and what is specific to particular places – will be formative to Labour’s own municipal socialist agenda.“ Who Owns The City? Municpalism and communalism. When We Go Into Goverment, We All Go Into Goverment, UK Labour’s plan to undo 40 years of privatization and revanche via mass democracy. Alternative Models Of Ownership (PDF) a Labour plan for a new economy. (Previously)
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Elon Musk’s iPod Submarine, a one page game from Tin Star Games. For less terrible solutions: What Elon Musk Should Learn From the Thailand Cave Rescue (SPOILERS: He chose not to learn those things and, um, went somewhere else)
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A new revelation has been sending shockwaves through the games journalism community. PC Gamer writer Wes Fenlon realizes he's been WASD-ing wrong his whole life.
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The story of Ayam Brand, set up in Singapore by a Frenchman, and how it got its name Still French-owned, the company started out selling tinned sardines with Clouet, the name of its founder, on the cans along with a rooster, symbol of France. That led Malays to dub it ‘chop ayam’ – the chicken brand. The rest is history
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Architectural projects for Paris that did not see the light of the day, an ongoing collection by u/BringbackMarchais on r/France (MLReddit). [more inside]
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Enough to be on your way If you are sitting in the corner of the basement because the wife is pissed at you and you come across a little known James Taylor video, you are obliged to share it. That is all.
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Decoding tired tropes of flashy architectural graphics Look at architectural renderings on a regular basis and soon you’ll start to spot stylized elements that pop up often enough to be called cliches, every one of them inserted into the image for a specific purpose. It’s all about selling the viewer on the concept, consciously and subconsciously, like any other form of marketing.
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Another Kickstarter campaign revealed to be a fraud: How the "Be." battery-free toothbrush faked a demonstration video. Having already collected over $400,000 in donations, the backers have quite a bit of vitriol to dispense (the creators have already labeled the revelation "fake news", despite having immediately removed the incriminating video).
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Trevor Noah spends about 8 minutes explaining exactly why Nelson Mandela's birthday is still observed in such a major way in his home country of South Africa, and also around the world.
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Around the internet, people have been delighted and uneasy at the news that a gigantic, featureless, sealed black sarcophagus recovered in Alexandria, Egypt, will be opened by archaeologists. Despite stateside hopes, the sarcophagus is unlikely to contain any Elder Gods. It is also unlikely to contain Alexander the Great, even though he was said to have been reburied in a sealed coffin [pdf] full of honey in Alexandria. Since the only clue to the owner's identity is an alabaster bust with the face eaten away, it is no doubt a very ordinary person's burial with nothing amazing about it at all.
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Superfans The Sevateem (Twitter) have created The Caves, a lush, electro-indie-pop tribute to the classic 1984 Doctor Who story The Caves of Androzani. (Wikipedia) (Tardis Data Core). It's pay-what-you-want, with all profits donated to Doctors Without Borders.
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Alice Bell at Rock Paper Shotgun asks game industry insiders: what would you do to a clone of yourself? [more inside]
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New Zealand firm's four-day week an 'unmitigated success'. Reduced hours for same pay increased work-life balance by 24%, cutting stress levels and boosting commitment.
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Guillaume Hebert first merged classical landscapes with photography in his series The Rocks of Taiwan, then The Rocks of Ludao, combining his photographs of seascapes with romantic landscapes. He increased the juxtaposition of the modern foreground with idyllic background in a series titled Updated Landscape, pairing the lighting in his photos with the background paintings from prior centuries. [via Wired] For different takes on merging painting with photography, here's a list of 16 more artists from My Modern Met, and a nod to Painted Land, a film documenting the efforts to track down landscapes painted by Canada's Group of Seven [interview video as trailer].
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Under a Porcelain Sun [YouTube] [Video Game Trailer] is a first-person adventure set in a surrealist colonial India. It’s about two thieves searching for the mythical city Kayamgadh. Along the way, they’ll encounter castles of glue, wax people, and other strangeness. It comes from a studio in India called Oleomingus and will be out this summer. [via: Kotaku]
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“ 1984 the future of the conservative party had already been in Washington for a dozen years. Jesse Helms, a junior senator, was among the group of North Carolinian and Texan conservatives that created their own wave without full national party backing, without complimentary ads from Nixon and his squad, without the money or even full-throated support of the North Carolina Republican Party. His election registered nationally, but only because of what the national media and audience saw as the byproduct—a one-off Republican conservative slipping through while the Democrats picked up two Senate seats and kept a healthy lead over their counterparts in the GOP. Helms was initially cast as an aberration; he wasn’t. He was a reaction, and the future.” How though direct mail, mudslinging, open racism, and television appearances Jesse Helms Invented The Republican Party (Splinter News)
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"Rihanna made headlines last fall when she launched Fenty Beauty, an intentionally inclusive makeup line created “so that women everywhere would be included.” Fenty’s liquid foundation product, Pro Filt’r, was so groundbreaking that it made it onto Time’s 25 Best Inventions of 2017 list. Its claim to fame: the foundation launched with 40 shades “made for women of all skin colors & undertones." But as it turns out, a few other brands had 40 or more shades too, including Make Up For Ever, who was not about to let that fact go unnoticed. Shortly after Fenty’s launch, they challenged the newcomer in an Instagram post noting that 40 shades of foundation was “nothing new” since they’ve had 40 shades since 2015. Rihanna was unimpressed. She quickly shot back with two comments: “lol. still ashy” and “shook.” In other words, Rihanna was implying that Make Up For Ever’s foundation lacked range and would still leave people of color looking “ashy” or slightly gray. So how valid is her comeback? Actually, there’s a way to find out—with data." How Inclusive Are Beauty Brands Around the World?
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What are higher education deserts? The Chronicle of Higher Education explores where and which Americans are the farthest away from colleges and universities.

The Urban Institute offered a somewhat different approach, combining geography and broadband.

The American Council on Education focused on geography, but used a different model to yield different results.
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My great-grandfather, the Nigerian slave trader. A New Yorker article by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani in which she reflects on her family's involvement in the African slave trade, and its ramifications today for the descendants of both the slavers and the enslaved.
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Nuwaubian group wound up labeled as a hate group by the SPLC. Not long ago in Georgia, black and gold pyramids stood proudly on the 476-acre compound of Tama-Rey. It was the holy “Land of the Sun,” a place where the self-declared God, Dr. Malachi Z. York, manipulated thousands of nationwide followers in the “Nuwaubian Nation of Moors” to believe they were cosmic purveyors of an extraterrestrial truth.
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"I respect that bakers who are proud of their bagels might get pissed that someone is destroying their creation. But it’s a damn piece of bread. Eat it in a way that makes the most sense to you. If you want to enjoy your sandwich without half of the toppings falling out of the sides, then do what feels right: hold your head high and scoop out your bagel."
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The facility, called Diamond Light Source, is one of the most powerful and sophisticated X-ray facilities in the world, used to probe everything from viruses to jet engines. On this summer afternoon, though, its epic beam will focus on a tiny crumb of papyrus that has already survived one of the most destructive forces on the planet—and 2,000 years of history. It comes from a scroll found in Herculaneum, an ancient Roman resort on the Bay of Naples, Italy, that was buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.
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68-year-old artist/musician Lonnie Holley has released the video for his new single, "I Woke Up In A Fucked-Up America." [more inside]
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Library tickets, library cards and library pockets as historical or nostalgic objects: Is the Library Card Dying? by Sara Polski in The Atlantic. [more inside]
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We kept all three types stacked high in a kitchen cabinet, a potentially disastrous placement for clumsy kids looking to set the table each night. But these weren’t any plates. They were Corelle, the seemingly indestructible kind still found in immigrant households across the country. [more inside]
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