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Updated 2017-05-24 23:18
Is this keyboard player the happiest person on the planet?
The keyboardist for The Incredible Bongo Band likes his job. (There's also some seriously egregious cultural appropriation happening.)
Good deal on the AmazonBasics travel case: $9
I bought this small travel case in 2011 for $14 and use it whenever I travel. Here's an article I wrote for Cool Tools a few years ago about the stuff I carry in it. It's still in great condition. Amazon has a great sale on it right now for $9.
Here are the favorite book designs of master book designers
I've bought an awful lot of books just because I liked the cover. I don't regret it. It's like buying an art print that you can pull from your shelf an admire at any time. In this Magenta article, Belinda Lanks asks noted designers about their favorite book covers.If you ask me who my favorite book jacket designer of all time is, it’s Alvin Lustig. If you ask me which of his jacket designs is my favorite, it’s impossible. It’s most certainly one of the jackets he designed for New Directions’ New Classics. Lustig essentially branded the New Direction series with a modern look that was reminiscent of what was going on in the fine art world. It’s as if he translated a Calder sculpture or a Joan Miro painting into a book cover. Each book is reduced to color, line, shape, and type to reflect the feel of the book rather than the literal content. The geometric shapes, the bold color palettes, the freeform lines still feel modern today. -- Rex Bonomelli
Global recreational drug survey: magic mushrooms are safest
Speed, synthetic cannabis, and alcohol top the list for the most dangerous drugs in the 2017 Global Drug Survey, while cannabis and magic mushrooms are the safest. The results are based on the percentage of people who sought emergency medical treatment after taking one of the drugs.From The Guardian:Both [Adam] Winstock [a consultant addiction psychiatrist and founder of the Global Drug Survey] and [Brad] Burge [from the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (Maps)] said that the findings indicate a need for drug policy reform, with a focus on shifting psychedelics off the schedule one list of the most dangerous controlled substances.“Drug laws need to balance the positives and problems they can create in society and well crafted laws should nudge people to find the right balance for themselves,” said Winstock.“People don’t tend to abuse psychedelics, they don’t get dependent, they don’t rot every organ from head to toe, and many would cite their impact upon their life as profound and positive. But you need to know how to use them.”
Watch a boxer beat up a tennis ball hanging from his hat
Ukrainian professional boxer Vasyl Lomachenko jabs with incredible precision at a tennis ball attached to his hat. It's a neat training technique! All that's missing, of course, is a soundtrack of "Gonna Fly Now/Theme from Rocky."
How to make a cotton candy machine with an angle grinder, then unofficially demo it at Maker Faire
Maker William Osman from Ventura, CA shows us how to make a cotton candy machine with an angle grinder, small metal container, motor, coffee filter, and other household/workshop materials. He worries about being able to bring his contraption onto the Maker Faire grounds, but slips it in with no problem. He then huddles under bleachers to test the machine with friends, and by their reactions it looks like some pretty scrumptious cotton candy. For the grand finale Osman demos the machine to the public, giving out free samples to passersby. That's the Maker Faire spirit!
USPS issues circular, textured sports ball stamps
The USPS's new "Have a Ball!" stamp series include eight circular designs of sports balls I like the design of these stamps more than the sports they celebrate!Each of the 16 self-adhesive circular stamps showcases illustrations of one of eight sports balls: baseball, basketball, football, golf, kickball, soccer, tennis, and volleyball. A special coating applied to selected areas of the stamps during the printing process gives them a textured feel. The sheet features two of each design.Mike Ryan designed the stamps and Greg Breeding served as the art director of the project. Artist Daniel Nyari created the colorful, stylized stamp art.
Big, sweet dog interrupts newscast
And that's the way it is. (via Laughing Squid)
People who are annoyed by unorthodox platters
WeWantPlates is a subreddit featuring weird plates, plates made of weird materials, and food served on things which are not even plates. The interplay between amused detachment and seething contempt is a microcosm of something much larger.
Hibachi chef making a meal on a regular table
From Clickhole: "This is absolutely devastating."
Taiwan court rules for same-sex marriage
Taiwan will be the first place in Asia to legalize same-sex unions, reports the BBC, after a panel of judges in Taipei ruled(PDF) that equality rights guaranteed it. Legislators have two years to pass a bill that provides "equal protection of the freedom of marriage for two persons of the same sex" before the court extends current law to apply to same-sex unions. Two of the fourteen justices filed dissenting opinions, with a third recusing themselves.BBC analyst Cindy Sui:But it's still unclear how far parliament will go.The LGBT community hopes legislators will simply amend the existing marriage laws to include same-sex couples, which would grant them the same rights enjoyed by opposite-sex couples, including in cases of adoption, parenting and inheritance - and making decisions for each other in medical emergencies.However, they fear parliament won't do that and will instead pass a new law that recognises same-sex marriages but gives them only some rights, not equal treatment in all matters. Photo: Reuters.
Intelligence leaks are why the U.S. media knew more about the Manchester attack than their British counterparts
Britain's Home Secretary is "irritated" that U.S. intelligence officials leaked "confidential" information about the Manchester terror attack to American media, allowing them to reveal key details before U.K. media were cleared to do so. The attacker's name, the high death toll, and the fact that it was a suicide bombing were among the facts finding their way to CBS and NBC before being disclosed to local outlets.Amber Rudd said US conduct had been "irritating" and said she had made clear to her American counterparts that such leaks "shouldn't happen again".The episode comes just a week after US president Donald Trump defended his right to leak classified intelligence to other countries' leaders. Mr Trump has also criticised leaking from the US intelligence establishment.Asked on BBC Radio 4's Today programme about the US leaks, Ms Rudd said: "The British police have been very clear that they want to control the flow of information in order to protect operational integrity, the element of surprise."So it is irritating when it gets released from other sources and I have been very clear with our friends that that should not happen again."There are so many interesting prongs here: echelons of the U.S. security apparatus that don't care about intelligence partners, sources in the White House and elsewhere leaking whatever they get their hands on, the futility of trying to manage what the media knows in the presence of all this, the presumed inability of America's intelligence partners (such as the UK) to extricate themselves...
This moonlit Yosemite waterfall looks like a cascade of molten gold
The famed Yosemite Firefall (previously) is a rare phenomenon when the setting sun hits Horsetail Fall with its dying light. Rogelio Bernal Andreo just took it to next level, capturing the even more rare moonlight firefall. (more…)
Bell, book, and emoji, bewitching emoticons for your phone
My favorite witch, Pam Grossman, editor of the phantastic art and occult blog, Phantasmaphile, and author of What is a Witch, has recently released WitchEmoji, a new messaging sticker pack for iPhone.The set offers 80 stickers in all, including the typical tools of spellcraft, symbols and sigils, and male and female witches of various skin tones. Pam created the set, with the help of icon illustrator Julia Heffernan, because she wanted to invoke more witchy symbolism in her mobile missives and there weren't many existing stickers that fit the bill. The response to the set has been extremely positive and Pam says she'd like to expand to Android and elsewhere. Given the success of the Apple set, I imagine we'll be seeing emoji-based spellcasting coming to other phones sooner than later.
Artist put 15,000 coins on a path and filmed the delightful reactions
When Jamahl McMurran hosted Croatian artist Lana Mesic at his home, she faced a problem: she had 15,000 loose coins from an art project. They decided to dump them on a nearby path and document the reactions, which did not disappoint. (more…)
Roger Ailes Dies, and a Celestial Grip Loosens...
FOLLOW @RubenBolling on the Twitters and a Face Book.JOIN Tom the Dancing Bug's subscription club, the Proud & Mighty INNER HIVE, for exclusive early access to comics, extra comics, and much more. GET Ruben Bolling’s new hit book series for kids, The EMU Club Adventures. (”Filled with wild twists and funny dialogue” -Publishers Weekly) Book One here. Book Two here. More Tom the Dancing Bug comics on Boing Boing! (more…)
Fox retracts hoax story about Seth Rich murder
While the world was agog at the news that President Trump had leaked sensitive, classified information to a Russian diplomat, the rightosphere was going bonkers over an old, dumb conspiracy theory that Seth Rich, a young DNC staffer who was murdered in DC, had been assassinated in retaliation for leaking DNC emails to Wikileaks. (more…)
It took four years lying underwater to get a perfect shot of a Eurasian beaver
For four years, photographer Louis-Marie Preau would lie motionless underwater for hours at a time to get this perfect shot of a Eurasian beaver carrying a branch back to its lodge. (more…)
A country music take on Smash Mouth’s “All Star”
In this new video, YouTubers The Gregory Brothers—the group behind Auto-Tune The News—put a country music spin on Smash Mouth’s “All Star.” It’s pretty great, but not quite as great as their country music cover of Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X7JgVqbh8nE
This Kickstarter success makes smartwatches easier
The Ticwatch 2 Active Smartwatch is a simpler take on an active wearable that raised over $2m dollars on Kickstarter and is currently offered in the Boing Boing Store.Somewhere in between the single-day battery life and platform-specificity of the Apple Watch and Android Wear devices, there exists the Ticwatch. Instead of trying to shoehorn another app platform into a tiny watch face, this smartwatch opts for a curated collection of functionality to avoid unnecessary bloat. It gets calls and text notifications from your phone, but it relies on internal GPS and movement sensors for the most critical smartwatch duty: activity monitoring. And It still syncs data with either iPhones or Android devices to give you a bigger screen for tracking exercise goals and biometrics.The Ticwatch has a battery life of up to 2 full days, and offers fast wireless charging. Usually $199.99, you can pick up the Ticwatch 2 Active Smartwatch for 15% off at $169.99.
London! I'll be at Pages of Hackney tonight with Olivia Sudjic! (then Liverpool, Birmingham, Hay...) (!)
Last night's sold-out Walkaway tour event with Laurie Penny at Waterstones Tottenham Court Road was spectacular (and not just because they had some really good whisky behind the bar), and the action continues today with a conversation with Olivia Sudjic tonight at Pages of Hackney, where we'll be discussing her novel Sympathy as well as Walkaway. (more…)
Desperate Comcast commits copyfraud in bid to silence its critics
The good people at Fight for the Future established OPERATIONCOMCASTROTURF to help you figure out if your stolen identity was used to file fake anti-net-neutrality comments with the FCC, but Comcast wants them shut down, and it's prepared to commit barratry to get its way. (more…)
Theresa May will send up to 5,000 soldiers to police UK public spaces
In the wake of the Manchester bombing, UK Prime Minister Theresa May has become the first Prime Minister to activate "Operation Temperer," a previously leaked, secret plan to put up to 5,000 armed soldiers into the streets of Britain, taking over daily security roles from police "such as concerts and sports matches." (more…)
Theresa May wants the UK to die within its means
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81IKostVXZkTheresa May won't use the term "austerity" to describe her government's policies, preferring the misleading phrase, "living within our means" -- a term used to describe cuts to survival basics for millions of Britons, from housing to health to food to social care. (more…)
The PrEP Diaries: A safe(r) sex memoir
Watch: 'Bannon's War' on FRONTLINE (PBS)
The PBS FRONTLINE television documentary on Trump's alt-right consigliere Steve Bannon is required viewing. The film aired tonight for the first time on PBS. (more…)
Marc Kasowitz, tapped as Trump's private attorney in Russia probe, also represents Russia's largest bank
Fox News and Reuters report that U.S. President Donald Trump has retained New York-based trial attorney Marc Kasowitz to defend him in the escalating federal investigations involving Russia, espionage suspicions, and possible criminal activities. (more…)
FCC won't take action over Stephen Colbert's Trump-Putin joke that led to #Firecolbert complaints
The Federal Communications Commission will not take any action in response to complaints over the May 1 broadcast of “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” in which Colbert said in his opening monologue, “the only thing [Trump’s] mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin’s c— holster.” (more…)
Obama speech generator
Want to hear a president talk again? Talk Obama To Me accepts up to 180 characters of text and pieces together a speech by Barack Obama. [via]
Trump lost the 'alpha male handshake' game on his global charm offensive tour. Sad!
Sometimes you win the super macho handshake power move game. Sometimes you lose. (more…)
1Password's new travel mode locks you out of your accounts while you're travelling and crossing borders
1Password has taken Maciej Cegłowski's demand for a "travel mode" for our technology to heart, introducing a new feature that locks you out of your own accounts when you're in situations where you might lose control of your devices or be compelled to log into your accounts without your consent. (more…)
Crosby, Stills & Nash's unused theme song for War Games (1983)
Crosby, Stills & Nash recorded this theme song for War Games, the seminal hacker film of 1983. The tune was heard in movie trailers and in this promotional video that aired on MTV but was apparently pulled from the film. The song, "War Games," was included on the band's album Allies. From the lyrics:I am not so sure What you want me for Either your machine Is a fool, or meNow there is no time to wait No time to think it over Take the path, believe the math You'll tell me when it's over
Grab it now: clip-on guitar/uke tuner for $5.59
Amazon has a lightning deal on this clip-on tuner. It's just $5.59 for the time being. I bought one.
Robert Crumb's Fritz the Cat sells for $717,000 at auction
The original art for the cover of R. Crumb's Fritz the Cat 1969 paperback sold at Heritage Auctions for $717,000:Robert Crumb R. Crumb's Fritz the Cat Cover Original Art (Ballantine, 1969). Fritz gets cozy with girlfriend Charlene in this famous cover image, taken from the oversized collection of stories first published by Ballantine in October, 1969. This book was so popular, it rated a second printing a month later! The image would go on to inspire a popular statue by Randy Bowen and Neil Surges in 2003 that quickly sold out. Fritz himself would go on to star in two feature-length animated movies, Fritz the Cat (1972), and The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat (1974). Although later abandoned by the artist, Fritz remains one of R. Crumb's most popular characters, one that dates back to the homemade comics Robert was producing as a teenager in the early sixties. This is perhaps one of the most famous and important single pieces of art by Crumb, one that has been stashed away in a private collection for many years. It's sure to be the centerpiece of any collection of Underground Comix art. It's in ink on Bristol board, with an approximate image area of 11" x 12.5", and matted to an overall size of 16" x 20". There is minor outer border handling and edge wear, but the image remains in Excellent condition.Crumb hated the Ralph Bakshi movie adaptations so much that he drew a story in which Fritz was stabbed to death by his ex-girlfriend. Similarly, Matt Furie drew a story in World’s Greatest Cartoonists that depicts the death of Pepe Le Frog after it had been appropriated as an alt-right mascot.
Krull for the Atari 2600
I had forgotten this video game exists. Krull was a favorite movie, but I am sure I never played this.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v6i2par2Fv0
Gentleman in red MAGA cap disrupts flight
It's hard to tell what's going on here with all the shouting, but a passenger was posting live updates about an irate gent's antics on this United flight from Shanghai:Already delayed an hour coming out of Shanghai to EWR when an older man in my row with a "Make America Great Again" hat decides to make a ruckus and delay everybody else. He insists that, because he couldn't get an upgrade, he's entitled to all three seats next to him even though they're assigned to somebody else.Captain, crew, and airport staff come over. Man threatens that they'll have to drag him off the plane.He finally relents, but not before berating some female passengers and crew, calling one passenger "Hillary" (lol) and "lesbian".Props to the United 87 crew for handling it professionally.update: Still haven't left yet. Everybody is standing, calling him an asshole, and urging him to leave.update 2: Police have arrived to applauseupdate 3: Crowd is really giving it to him.In English and in Chinese. Some people are really funnyBeen asked to deplaneUpdate 4: Haven't reboaded, but he is finally escorted off the plane. Crowd is pissed and chanting "Lock him up"Update 5: Finally reboarding and will get there 7 hours late, but we'll get there.Probably thinking that I'm hungry, the older Chinese lady (who can't speak any English) sitting next to me offered me a cookie.Update 6: Landed at SFO. waiting for a crew change and to get turned around to EWR.Unclear if the guy was eventually arrested, but gossip amongst the passengers is that Chinese police did not want to create an international incident on the plane, so rather than arrest him on the plane, they waited [for] the man to deplane as they had jurisdiction inside of the airportAccording to the LA Times, the flight was bound for Newark, N.J., but the captain made an unscheduled stop in San Francisco to eject the man.In a Facebook post, passenger Clark Gredoña described the events as they unfolded. He said the man claimed that because “he couldn't get an upgrade, he's entitled to all three seats next to him even though they're assigned to somebody else.”Cellphone videos taken abroad the aircraft showed the man shouting, “I am entitled to that seat,” then screaming at fellow passengers.In one exchange the man says, “This stupid man over here that does not know how to speak English and it doesn’t make sense, moron.”There are still a few vacant positions in the new administration, and with his level of statesmanlike conduct he's sure fill one of them soon.This guy has been delaying my wife's Shanghai to EWR United flt this a.m.. He wants to be dragged off so he can get his 25 million. MAGA hat pic.twitter.com/xWRSmpinpM— Daniel O'Connell (@DanOfromNYC) May 21, 2017"MAGA" passenger causes incident on @united flight at Shanghai Pudong. Details at https://t.co/s6uyjctjpI #united #united87 pic.twitter.com/hhyL7e63W9— Clark Gredona (@clark_gredona) May 21, 2017This guy in MAGA hat just caused cancellation @United#87.from Shanghai to Newark. Wanted to be dragged off to get his 25 million pic.twitter.com/FD7vuHPu84— Daniel O'Connell (@DanOfromNYC) May 21, 2017
Incredibly close call with most venomous snake in North America
Nick the Wrangler is no stranger to snakes and close calls, but even he looked rattled after this Eastern Diamondback, the most dangerous snake in North America, slithered onto his lap.From YouTube:After a long day of searching for snakes in the hottest part of the day. I decided to take a break. 15 or so minutes later I heard a rustle in the brush next to me. I take a better look to see an Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake crawling towards me, so i just sat there as still as possible. I thought he was going to keep on cruising by, but instead he decided to check me out. I tried to get him to keep moving but he rushed up onto my lap. This was a very close call. I was definitely out of my comfort zone but by Gods grace I wasn't harmed.
The part everybody skips in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
Every scene in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is great, except the one where Charlie's mother sings a bittersweet song about Charlie. It comes out of nowhere and is very boring. I have always hated it and I love that others think so, too.This happened every time I would watch Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
Bentley's SUV built for falconry
The Bentley Bentayga Falconry is a poshmobile built out for falconry, hunting wild quarry with the aid of a trained falcon. This vehicle is the sequel to the Bentayga Fly Fishing vehicle. The price is not listed but if you have to ask... From Bentley:Inside the master flight station, you will find a stowage tray with individual compartments, which can hold your GPS bird tracking unit, binoculars and hand-crafted leather bird hoods and gauntlets.A beautiful Piano Black veneered drawer features a striking Saker falcon crest. This stores your own GPS tracking antennas, along with various tools and tethers for your birds.Inside the refreshment case are three metal flasks with durable cups, for tea, coffee or other beverage of your choice. There is also warm blanket and refreshing face cloths for your comfort.The cork fabric boot-floor and rear-sill protection cover is neatly integrated into the rear of your Bentayga. This reversible feature, together with the in-car perch, gives you a safe and comfortable space to prepare your bird for flight, with everything you need in easy reach.There is also a removable perch and tether that fits on the central armrest inside the car, making transporting your falcon safe and comfortable. (via Uncrate)
Sir Roger Moore, 1927-2017
Roger Moore, famous for his portrayals of master spy James Bond and master criminal Simon Templar, is dead at 89, reports the BBC.Sir Roger's family confirmed the news on Twitter, saying he had died after "a short but brave battle with cancer".The statement, from his children, read: "Thank you Pops for being you, and being so very special to so many people."
Inexpensive keyboard has two settings: “OFF” and “NO”
The mechanical Royal Kludge keyboard (Update: in stock here) seems to do well with Amazon reviewers, but there are no guarantees you'll receive one with the coveted OFF/NO switch.
Don't call Microsoft's upgraded tablet PC the Surface Pro 5
Microsoft announced Tuesday a long-awaited upgrade to its Surface Pro series of high-end tablet PCs, dropping the number from the name and adding Kaby Lake processors, more minutes on a charge and a few dollars to the price tag.Here's Mark Hachman, Senior Editor at PCWorld: For Surface Pro 4 owners, the new Surface Pro is a tablet that’s 20 percent faster, with 50 percent more battery life, all for roughly the same price. If you're wondering how Microsoft eked out more battery life, executives said it was a combination of an increased battery capacity as well as efficiencies in both the new Core chip and the Creators Update of Windows 10.The new low-end fanless model will be good stuff for everyday Windows users wanting a does-it-all gadget.Tom Warren at The Verge reports that the pen is being significantly upgraded, too, getting tilt detection, 4096 levels of sensitivity and a reduction in activation force: "Inking now feels a lot less laggy and way more responsive on the Surface Pro."This is key for me. I couldn't quite get used to even the highest-end models in the past because the pen latency was so much worse than Wacom gear or the iPad Pro. I'll check in on the fifth Surface Pro and report back.
Ticket checker on the Minneapolis metro thinks he's an immigration cop
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i2s-R4v8wiYA transit officer in Minneapolis, whose main job is to ask "Tickets, please!", was filmed May 14 wanting "Papers, please!". The video posted on Facebook on May 20 has over 1 million views. In the clip, the officer asks the man, “Do you have a state ID?” The man appears to shake his head no.“Are you here illegally?” the officer asks next.Morales then intervenes and asks the officer, “Are you guys authorized to act as immigration police?”“No, not necessarily,” the officer says.Morales tells the officer, “Then I would stay out of that. It’s very touchy legal territory.”After the video went viral, Metro Transit Police Chief John Harrington released a statement assuring travelers it was not Metro policy to inquire about immigration status and promising an investigation.“It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that all members make personal and professional commitments to equal enforcement of the law and equal service to the public. Confidence in this commitment will increase the effectiveness of this department in protecting and serving the entire community and recognizing the dignity of all persons, regardless of their immigration status.”Never trust someone wearing a shiny badge: they think they have all the other ones, too.
Blomkamp to make experimental film series
Filmmaker Neill Blompkamp (of District 9 and Chappie fame) is producing a series of experimental short movies to be released on Steam and YouTube.He'd teased the idea in a tweet posted in April, and the response was good enough to get the green light, with the director promising a level of transparency and public collaboration rarely seen in Hollywood.https://twitter.com/NeillBlomkamp/status/866751232689315842Here's a teaser:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjIYBQ4P9usEmbedded up top is the "Presidential Motorcade" clip Blomkamp released during the presidential election campaign, with its freaky gold nightmare limousine crawling along to 14 seconds of tense synthetic murmurs. More!
Some curators do artifacts, these ones do geeky memorabilia
Loot Crate is a subscription service that delivers a box of curated pop culture goods to your doorstep. To sample their geeky wares, you can order a single mystery box exclusively from the Boing Boing Store.Each month Loot Crate sends you 6-7 unique items and apparel, including collectibles, books, and t-shirts. Pulling inspiration from all over the vast landscape of fandom, they pack interesting stuff for geeks of all stripes, from retro gamers to comic book connoisseurs. It’s like having a nerdy pen pal who constantly sends you hand-picked gifts.Try this Loot Crate mystery bundle to get a taste of all the awesome future stuff you can add to your collection. This package usually costs $50, but you can get a box from our store for just $25.
A healthy DIY unicorn smoothie
Though this brightly colored smoothie looks like the infamous Starbucks treat, it surprisingly contains no artificial ingredients.
The coded gaze: biased and understudied facial recognition technology
Rod McCullom at Undark has a terrific overview of the perpetual "virtual lineup," where half of all American adults "are enrolled in unregulated facial recognition networks used by state and local law enforcement agencies." (more…)
World's tallest spokeless Ferris wheel opens
A 145-meter spokeless Ferris wheel just opened in Weifang, China. Built on a bridge spanning the Bailaing River, it's about ten meters taller than the London Eye, a spoked Ferris wheel. (more…)
A colorful primer on history’s deadliest colors
TED-Ed offers a brief guide to history’s deadliest colors, from lead white in Ancient Greece to “Paris Green” in the 18th century.
Rare “Cyclops goat” born in Assam, India
Though animals born with one eye rarely survive into adulthood, so far this young goat is doing better than expected.