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Updated 2018-08-19 01:19
Alex Jones, hate monger, names Jack Dorsey as his ally
Jack Dorsey is now listed amongst the hateful right's most stalwart good guys, along with Tucker Carlson, and Laura Ingraham, says blowhard Alex Jones.Jones apparently knows what Jack's bullshit excuse making is really all about.Via Media Matters:ALEX JONES (HOST): You have to understand, folks. I have worked so hard in this and have been so dedicated that I don’t want to be taken out of the game and I’m going 110 percent -- I can’t quit. But you have to understand -- I’m going to fight 110 percent to stay on the air and everything and I think we can, if you help us. But if we get knocked out, I’m just upset for the country and the world because they’re going after everybody already.So, we are the main promontory as the enemy attacks and we’re right up front and under the main attack and I appreciate your prayers, but I prayed a long time ago on air -- and I meant it -- that we’d be lifted up like a standard against the globalists and that we’d be given the information, and the words, and the stamina to wake people up against the evil, anti-human, mark of the beast, one world government, Chinese social score plan that’s now here. And it’s happened. We’ve worked with others like [Drudge Report's Matt] Drudge and other patriots, and you really learn who's good and who's bad. [Fox's] Tucker Carlson’s good and [radio host] Michael Savage is good and a few others are good. [Fox's] Laura Ingraham. Matt Drudge. So far [Twitter CEO] Jack Dorsey. And it’s going to be one hell of an adventure. I mean that’s the thing. This is one hell of an adventure. Flying around in private jet airplanes and owning slave factories doesn’t sound too fun to me. Fighting the guys that own the slave factories, that sounds really exciting. I feel good when I do that. Don’t you?
Artist imagines what cartoon characters would look like in real life (and they ain't pretty)
3D character artist Miguel Vasquez brings fairly innocuous-looking cartoon characters into disturbing 3D "life," like he did with Homer Simpson above.Here's his Spongebob Squarepants...https://www.instagram.com/p/BV8r2LGDlq4/?taken-by=marvelous_mikeeAlong with Squidward and Patrick:https://www.instagram.com/p/BalK8mVj3en/?taken-by=marvelous_mikeeHere's his Nigel Thornberry (who's voiced by Tim Curry) of the old Nickelodeon show The Wild Thornberrys :https://www.instagram.com/p/BjElYGwDjqA/?taken-by=marvelous_mikeeIf those weren't enough to freak you out, he's got more on his Instagram.
FBI investigating cyber attack on CA Democratic congressional candidate's campaign
The FBI is investigating a cyberattack on the congressional campaign of David Min, a Democratic candidate in California. (more…)
Man struggles with barber over head waxing
I think he should have just kept the wax on. It looks like a 1980 Devo pomp wig!
This is my favorite Itty bitty Bluetooth speaker
This 3-ounce Bluetooth speaker is highly rated on Amazon (and Fakespot gives the reviews an A grade for authenticity). It also comes with a built in mic so you can use it as a speakerphone. We bought one in March and my daughter uses it much more than than the larger one she has. It is loud and clear, even at top volume. It's only $10.79 when you click the coupon checkbox.
Stephen Colbert teaches a millennial how to use a payphone
Many people under the age of 30 have never used a landline, let alone a payphone. Stephen Colbert took a random young person from his audience outside and taught her how to use a payphone for the first time. After spraying the phone with disinfectant and handing her some quarters ("Have you ever seen these before? They're like Venmo you can touch.") Colbert gives her step-by-step instructions. Unfortunately she doesn't know any phone numbers, so Colbert tells her to call the number of the pizza parlor right next to the phone. Then Colbert has her call an operator and whispers into her ear what to say.
1,000 Googlers sign petition opposing Google's plan to launch a censored Chinese search engine
Over 1,000 Google employees have signed a petition urging senior management to reconsider the company's plan to launch a censored Chinese search product (codename: Dragonfly), a revolt that's been in the works since the news broke; the employees demand transparency about the project and point out that it violates the Association of Computing Machinery's code of ethics.
Why were people thinner in the 1970s?
On July 26, Guardian columnist George Monbiot tweeted a photo of people on Brighton Beach in 1976, with the comment:In this photo, from 1976, almost everyone is what we would now call slim. So what has happened? A sudden loss of willpower, as some rightwing journos claim? No. An obesogenic environment created by junk food manufacturers and their advertisers.In this photo, from 1976, almost everyone is what we would now call slim. So what has happened? A sudden loss of willpower, as some rightwing journos claim? No. An obesogenic environment created by junk food manufacturers and their advertisers. pic.twitter.com/DmzxsD5VLz— GeorgeMonbiot (@GeorgeMonbiot) July 26, 2018As you can see, lively Twitter discussion ensued. Monbiot did some research into people's dietary and exercise habits, then and now. He found that people actually ate more in the 1970s than they do now. Manual laborers are heavier today than they were in the 1970s. Kids move around as much today as they did 50 years ago. "So what has happened?" asks Monbiot? His answer: lots more sugar.The light begins to dawn when you look at the nutrition figures in more detail. Yes, we ate more in 1976, but differently. Today, we buy half as much fresh milk per person, but five times more yoghurt, three times more ice cream and – wait for it – 39 times as many dairy desserts. We buy half as many eggs as in 1976, but a third more breakfast cereals and twice the cereal snacks; half the total potatoes, but three times the crisps. While our direct purchases of sugar have sharply declined, the sugar we consume in drinks and confectionery is likely to have rocketed (there are purchase numbers only from 1992, at which point they were rising rapidly. Perhaps, as we consumed just 9kcal a day in the form of drinks in 1976, no one thought the numbers were worth collecting.) In other words, the opportunities to load our food with sugar have boomed. As some experts have long proposed, this seems to be the issue.The shift has not happened by accident. As Jacques Peretti argued in his film The Men Who Made Us Fat, food companies have invested heavily in designing products that use sugar to bypass our natural appetite control mechanisms, and in packaging and promoting these products to break down what remains of our defences, including through the use of subliminal scents. They employ an army of food scientists and psychologists to trick us into eating more than we need, while their advertisers use the latest findings in neuroscience to overcome our resistance.Image: Evan-Amos - Own work, CC0, Link
Laser cutters and 3D printers revive century-old a magic lantern show of Erewhon at the Edinburgh Fringe
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wdszTmNcEFE&feature=youtu.beJames Coutts writes, "Indiana University Victorian Studies PhD candidate Mary Borgo Ton assembled an international group of artists/makers, a media archaeologist, laser cutters and 3D printers to create magic lantern slides that have not been made in 100 years for a show running in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe called Erewhon: "An antique magic lantern projector, an iPhone and a live musical score shine a new light on Samuel Butler’s classic sci-fi novel. A Victorian explorer discovers a colony of refugees; time travellers from the 21st century escaping their dependence on its technology. This delightful neo-historical head-scratcher playfully welds future, past and present into a glittering bracelet of time." (more…)
Steve Bannon tries to sleaze his way into European far-right, they tell him to go home
Poor Sloppy Steve. After losing his Rasputian status with Trump and the Mercers, he tried to peddle his off-brand fascism with nationalist Europeans. But it turns out even these unsavory characters think the only thing Bannon is good at is making things worse.The London Free Press reports that Alexander Gauland, co-chairman of Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany party bluntly rejected Bannon's cock-eyed proposal to form a pan-European coalition of ultraconservative groups:“We’re not in America,” Gauland told Der Westen, a news website in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia. “The interests of the anti-establishment parties in Europe are quite divergent.” The German politician also reportedly declared that Bannon “will not succeed in forging an alliance of the like-minded for the European elections.”The French nationalists don't want want anything to do with the Ugly American, either:“Bannon is American and has no place in a European political party,” Jérôme Rivière, the international spokesman for the French far-right party National Rally, told Politico. “We reject any supranational entity and are not participating in the creation of anything with Bannon.”Cornell European government expert Christopher Way explains:“Part of why Bannon’s project won’t succeed is a failure to recognize the diversity of European right-wing populist parties. Getting them on the same page is like herding cats,” he said. “I don’t see any reason he should succeed when they haven’t managed to coalesce themselves.”What can he do now? With limited options, Bannon is trying to ingratiate himself with his former boss by making a pro-Trump documentary. Good luck with that.Image: Michael Vadon/Wikimedia. (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International)
Roman candles are best when held by terrified children
Give your kids Roman candles to use in a confined space. What could go wrong? Sure, they might drop them in terror. Yeah, the sparkling, white-hot explosion of entertaining color that pours out of the firework could cause them life-altering injuries, but it’s totally cool. Just enjoy the colors.Enjoy. Those. Colors.
None of the Above won the 2016 election
Pew's latest very detailed survey of voting patterns in 2016 goes the extra mile, by validating whether recipients actually cast a ballot, thus forming a picture of who voted, who didn't, and what policies nonvoters favored. (more…)
Powerful new PSA reminds owners to secure their guns from children
Eight American kids are killed or injured daily by unsecured guns in their homes. The Ad Council, creators of Smokey Bear and other iconic PSAs, launched the End Family Fire campaign to raise awareness. (more…)
Overtourism: the plague affecting the world's most interesting places
Venice banned cruise ships, Mount Everest has traffic jams, and now even tourists are saying places like Amsterdam have too many tourists. It's all part of a problem dubbed overtourism. (more…)
Watch these impressive Slinky moves by a street performer
Slinky Josh bills himself as North America's first professional slinky manipulator, and if the passers-by are any indication, he's very good at his chosen profession. (more…)
Sacha Baron Cohen convinces pro-gun activist to bite a dildo on his show
In the Showtime series, Who Is America?, Sacha Baron Cohen convinces far-right leaders and activists to do silly things. He got Dick Cheney to sign a waterboard, Joe Arpaio to say he'd accept a blow job from Trump, and GOP lawmaker Jason Spencer to pull down his pants and yell the N-word. In the latest episode, he convinced pro-gun activist Dan Roberts that the best strategy to prevent yourself from being beheaded was by biting the would-be executioner's penis. Roberts enthusiastically tried out the tactic on Cohen, who wore a strap on dildo.If your irrational fear of terrorists, Muslims, immigrants, refugees, etc causes you to be this deranged you deserve to be humiliated by #SachaBaronCohen#WhoIsAmerica pic.twitter.com/tbZGPFJFlx— Wardin Rosewater (@cynicsanonymous) August 13, 2018
22-year-old Bitcoin millionaire scammed out of $35 million
A famous 27-year-old Thai actor was arrested after a 22-year-old Finnish millionaire complained that the actor had bilked him out of 5,564 bitcoin (worth $35 million) in an investment scam. Jiratpisit "Boom" Jaravijit, 27, was filming a movie when police took him to jail. The Finnish millionaire, Aarni Otava Saarimaa, said Boom approached him with an opportunity to invest in a stake in a Macau casino that accepted a cryptocurrency called Dragoncoin. Saarimaa handed over his Bitcoin and waited for that sweet, sweet Dragoncoin to start pouring in. But Boom suddenly went silent, and the promise of casino-derived lucre never materialized. Saarimaa went to the Thai police, who turned the case over to its Crime Suppression Division (CSD), which investigated and found that Boom, his brother (who has an existing warrant on an unrelated embezzlement charge), his sister, and two other people who are members of a Thai gang had simply converted the bitcoin into local currency and deposited it into their personal bank accounts. Boom is out on bail, but police are hunting for his siblings. Boom's elder brother, whom the CSD suspects is the ringleader of the scam, is thought to be hiding out in the United States.Image: phanurak rubpol/Shutterstock
Artist didn't realize his painting was inspired by a parasitic worm in his eye
Ben Taylor, a 47-year-old artist, was inspired to paint a trippy, colorful circle filled with abstract worm-like patterns. He never finished the work. Years later, Taylor identified the subconscious inspiration for the painting: a 1" African parasitic worm called a Loa loa that he didn't know had taken up residence in his eye but had caused years of illness. Now his painting is on the cover of the medical journal Emerging Infectious Diseases (PDF). From the Washington Post:“I suppose there was almost a sense of relief . . . just because I realized I wasn’t going mad,” Taylor said of his diagnosis...While recovering, Taylor began painting again, and while rummaging in his home studio, he came across... the unfinished work he had shelved earlier...He grabbed his paints and brush and began to finish it. He drew the lashes and the sclera, or the white part of the eye. He painted over the middle, so that the intricate wormlike patterns look like spiraling galaxies disappearing into the dark pupil. He added the worms — long, white and nearly transparent images slithering from the eyelids. “Untitled” became “The Host.”"His health had been failing for years. Then he saw something crawling in his eye" (Washington Post)
Dog doesn't let its cat friend get in a fight
In this video we see a cat stealthily approaching another cat. A golden retriever knows that nothing good can result if the two cats start to fight, so it gently picks up the cat by its harness and carries it away.good boy doesn't let a fight break out 😀👌 pic.twitter.com/Vb0h0OKJ6H— Gaml .y (@m_yosry2012) August 10, 2018
Snake 3D: classic phone game made into a total headache
Snake 3D adds depth to the classic two-dimensional game; hold shift and you'll move in and out rather than up, down, left or right. It takes so much getting used to--and is so difficult before you even get to the point where the snake's length becomes a hazard to itself--that I suspect that the entire premise is beyond the threshold of human patience, if not comprehension. See 1989's Welltris, from Tetris creator Alexey Pajitnov and Andrei Sgenov, a game design that only makes sense as the result of failing to make a more obvious implementation of 3D Tetris playable. Emboldened by superior 3D graphics in the late 1990s, Nintendo eventually implemented 3D Tetris itself but it wasn't much more fun than Block Out. Nowadays, some form of 3D Tetris sometimes shows up as a "go fuck yourself" mode on normal Tetris games.
Pastry chef tries to make Oreos from scratch
After attempting Lucky Charms and Skittles, Claire Saffitz is back with an attempt to make gourmet Oreos, which she says was the most fun of all these sorts of challenges. (more…)
Just look at these bananails.
Just look at them. (Thanks, Sean!)
Put words between buns!
Courtesy of Ian Bogost (previously): a meme generator that puts words between buns!
These e-commerce pros will help you earn more from your Shopify store
Running a Shopify store is a great way to net some extra cash on the side or—if you really know what you're doing—replace your 9-to-5 altogether. However, success doesn't come naturally, and newcomers tend to receive mixed results when starting on their own. This E-Commerce Bootcamp can help start your Shopify venture off on the right foot, and it's available in the Boing Boing Store for $29.Led by a duo of Shopify gurus, this course will show you how to build your store with a no-fluff setup checklist. You'll learn from their experiences developing six-figure and seven-figure online stores as you walk through a sales funnel and explore targeting the right markets to grow your audience. Make your way through the collection, and you'll have the skills required to launch your Shopify store and generate leads right away.The E-Commerce Bootcamp is available in the Boing Boing Store for $29, 75% off its usual retail price.
Police chief's son charged in brutal attack on Sikh man
One of two teen boys who kicked and beat a Sikh man in Manteca, California, turned out to be a local police chief's own son. Tyrone McAllister, 18, the son of Union City, California, police Chief Darryl McAllister, was one of the two arrested, police in the city of Manteca, California, said.The other suspect was identified as a 16-year-old boy whose name was withheld because he's underage. The two were taken into custody Wednesday for investigation of attempted robbery, elder abuse and assault with a deadly weapon, Manteca police said.
This guy really knows how to kill yellowjackets
https://youtu.be/7FhifTGKtUQIn his YouTube channel description, Sean Woods explains that he created his channel in 2012 as a "fun way to share my passions for history, primitive archery, flintknapping, survival skills, hunting, heirloom gardening, cooking, and a variety of other subjects." He says that last year, "the direction of my channel completely shifted when I accidentally discovered people enjoy watching videos about mouse traps." Now he posts videos almost exclusively about pest control, and he has 800,000 followers.In this video Woods goes after yellow jackets. Anyone whose been stung by one knows how painful it is. I've been stung by bees many times and I barely care. But a yellow jacket will sting you multiple times in a second and each sting feels like getting punched with an icepick. Woods starts out by digging up an underground wasp nest in his backyard. It looks like a hazardous job. First he sprays wasp killer into the hole in the ground leading to the wasp nest, digs with a shovel, sprays more, and digs some more. Even when he drenches the nest with spray some of the yellow jackets are still active. In fact, Woods was stung by one off-camera, but he does't seem to mind. He must have a very high threshold for pain.In the second part of the video, Woods tests three wasp traps. Two are store bought, and the third one is homemade. He uses chicken for bait in two of the traps, commenting that the wasps are "greedy" for meat. His homemade trap beats the other two by a wide margin.
Couple jailed after abusing child and selling him to pedophiles
A German 48-year old citizen and her 39-year old partner have been sentenced to 12 years in prison after being found guilty of repeatedly raping her son. If that’s not enough, the filth also sold the boy to pedophiles she found on the Dark Net, who further abused the child and filmed it, over a two-year period. It goes without saying that Germany, and most anyone else that’s heard about it, has been horrified by the case. From The Guardian:In Tuesday’s verdict, the couple was ordered to pay €42,500 (£38,000) in compensation to the boy and another victim, a young girl.Local authorities have been accused of failing to protect the boy, who now lives with a foster family. The mother’s partner was supposed to be banned from having contact with children. Officials removed the boy from the family in March last year, but a local court sent him back weeks later.According to The Telegraph, six others were jailed for their involvement in the sexual abuse of the boy. Because of the way that Germany handles criminal cases that involve rape, none of the parties responsible can be named by the media. I can’t even begin to imagine the life-long harm that’s been done to those kids in the name of self-fulfillment and greed, nor can I understand the how a system designed to protect society’s most vulnerable failed them them so completely. Image via Flickr, courtesy of Blogtrepreneur
Fortnite welcomes Android users
Google fans no longer get an automatic L, Epic Games has opened pre-registration for Fortnite Android.Fortnite Battle Royale is Epic Games 100 player, last player standing megahit. Cartoon-y as heck, with Wile E. Coyote like antics, eliminated players are sent back to the lobby while their opponents dance and celebrate their wins.Fortnite for Android will be available on some devices. I'll post the list below. Purchase a new Samsung Note 9 or Galaxy Tab S4 and you get an awful looking skin to play with that other folks won't have.Epic has some confusing partnership with Samsung but the game is available on other manufacturers handhelds as well. Epic is NOT partnering with Google, and has elected not to distribute the game via the Google Play store. Survive the storm, beware the malware. Downloads will be direct from Epic.Sign up here.Android Beta initially will work on the following devices:Samsung Galaxy: S7 / S7 Edge, S8 / S8+, S9 / S9+, Note 8, Note 9, Tab S3, Tab S4 Google: Pixel / Pixel XL, Pixel 2 / Pixel 2 XL, Asus: ROG Phone, Zenfone 4 Pro, 5Z, V Essential: PH-1 Huawei: Honor 10, Honor Play, Mate 10 / Pro, Mate RS, Nova 3, P20 / Pro, V10 LG: G5, G6, G7 ThinQ, V20, V30 / V30+ Nokia: 8 OnePlus: 5 / 5T, 6 Razer: Phone Xiaomi: Blackshark, Mi 5 / 5S / 5S Plus, 6 / 6 Plus, Mi 8 / 8 Explorer / 8SE, Mi Mix, Mi Mix 2, Mi Mix 2S, Mi Note 2 ZTE: Axon 7 / 7s, Axon M, Nubia / Z17 / Z17s, Nubia Z11See the FAQ for the list of more compatible devices.
In 1869 14 German polar explorers were stranded on an ice floe for six months
Germany's polar expedition of 1869 took a dramatic turn when 14 men were shipwrecked on an ice floe off the eastern coast of Greenland. As the frozen island carried them slowly toward settlements in the south, it began to break apart beneath them. In this week's episode of the Futility Closet podcast we'll follow the crew of the Hansa on their desperate journey toward civilization.We'll also honor a slime mold and puzzle over a reversing sunset.Show notesPlease support us on Patreon!
Omarosa secretly taped Donald Trump
Lordy, there are MORE tapes!The Daily Beast is reporting that professional reality show villain Omarosa Manigault-Newman secretly taped Donald Trump during her time in the Oval Office as Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison. Her new book "UNHINGED: An Insider's Account of the Trump White House" comes out next week. Multiple sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell The Daily Beast that Omarosa Manigault-Newman, the infamous former Apprentice star who followed Trump to the White House, secretly recorded conversations with the president—conversations she has since leveraged while shopping her forthcoming “tell-all” book, bluntly titled UNHINGED.For months, it has been rumored that Manigault had clandestinely recorded on her smartphone “tapes” of unspecified private discussions she had in the West Wing. Audio actually does exist, and even stars Manigault’s former boss.Good thing Trump only picks the best, most loyal and trustworthy people. Omarosa Secretly Recorded Trump—And Played the Audio for People, Sources Say [Lachlan Markay, Asawin Suebsaeng, Maxwell Tani/Daily Beast] [Photo: Timothy A. Clary/AFP/Getty Images]
Japanese self-sharpening mechanical pencils give the lead a tiny turn every time you lift the tip
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H_OXoxymehoUni's Kuru Toga Roulettes are mechanical pencils that solve a problem I've never had, which is that the tip wears differentially, eventually creating a blunt instrument (I am a clod whose draftsmanship looks like I tried writing in a zeppelin caught in a tornado, so this is not a problem for me) -- the Roulette contains a tiny gearing mechanism that rotates the lead by a quarter-turn every time you lift the tip (e.g. between words); this creates an even wear around the lead's tip, keeping it sharp and reducing the likelihood that it will snap. (via Core 77)
Integrating the data from my ragtag collection of fitness trackers
My preferred way get in shape involves mercilessly tracking my effort and results. I have a mishmosh of fitness trackers and gadgets I use to monitor my daily progress towards, or away from, being physically fit. Integrating all that data into one place? Oy vey. (more…)
The Strandbeests of 2018 are from the very greatest of timelines
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=On8v-Wr3XxUFor more than 15 years, we've been writing about the strandbeests, Theo Jansen's incredibly, multilegged windwalking machines that clatter their way along in eerily lifelike fashion (I even wrote them into my fiction). (more…)
The Garmin InReach Mini is this digital nomad's new best friend
If you spend your life in cities or on the interstates that connect them to one another, it’s easy to forget that there are parts of the world where cellular connectivity simply doesn’t exist. Right now, I’m 45 minutes from the nearest town, sitting in a motorhome, surrounded by nothing but trees. Out here, a busy day consists of seeing a few logging trucks or maybe some elk wander by. It’s remote, but I’m still able to connect to the Internet and do my job over my cellphone’s cellular connection. I can amplify my connection to cell towers using a cellular booster that I installed on our rig, earlier this year. But there have been instances where we’ve found ourselves far enough out in the sticks that I couldn’t find a cell signal to save my life. That’s why a device like Garmin’s InReach Mini is so cool. It’s a tiny satellite-connected communications device that lets me stay in touch with the outside world even when the outside world is too far away to connect to.At 2.04” x 3.90” x 1.03” in size and weighing less than four ounces, this thing is designed for the backpacking crowd. It has an IPX7 rating, so it’s OK to clip it to your belt or a backpack without fear of it being fried in a downpour while you’re out and about. That’s good news, as the Mini needs a clear view of the sky for it to connect to Iridium satellite network in order to do its thing. If you’re hoping to score a connection while it’s still inside of your rucksack or while you’re under tree cover, you’re going to be disappointed. While you’re out in the open, say in a clearing in the middle of a forest or at the side of a logging road—examples that draws on my experience with the device—it’s another story. Without a single bar of cellular connectivity, I can use the inReach Mini to send a canned message to my loved ones and let them know that I’m OK while I’m out on trail. They can send messages right back to me. If they feel like stalking me, they can. The InReach Mini can be set to upload my whereabouts to Garmin's servers every ten minutes. This data is overlaid on a map that's accessable via a private website. The map details my current location and the track I've taken. When the Mini is connected to the Earthmate App on my iPhone via Bluetooth, I can use the it to send short text messages or emails to anyone in my phone’s contact list, via the device’s satellite uplink. I can even use the thing to check in on the weather for my location. For the six months of the year that I spend in Alberta, Canada, this is wildly important as the forecast here can turn on a dime. Dangerous thunderstorms and hail the size of quarters are not uncommon.Most importantly, if either of my wife or I get into trouble with an illness, injury or a mechanical failure that prevents us from getting to help, the InReach Mini has our back. On the side of the device, there’s a small panel that flips up. Under that panel you’ll find an SOS button. Pushing it will send your location and a distress call to GEOS Worldwide—a company that specializes in providing safety solutions to travelers and adventurers. After receiving your distress signal, GEOS will call first responders in your vicinity to come and lend you the hand that you need. To keep you from wondering whether your message was received while you wait, they’ll also send along status updates to the InReach Mini to let you know when help is due to arrive. After owning one for a few months and using it every time I leave the RV to go for a hike, I’ve got nothing bad to say about this thing. However, there are a few of caveats that you you should know before you consider buying one of your own. First, satellite-connected hardware doesn't come cheap. A Garmin InReach Mini will set you back $350—and that’s just for the hardware. You’ll need to subscribe for a rate plan to use it. Garmin’s plans for the device range in price from $12 to around $80, per month. To be able to use all of the features I do, you’ll need to pay for their Expedition plan, to the tune of $50 per month. Without a rate plan attached to it, the InReach Mini is nothing but an expensive paperweight—and a light one, at that.Second, you will wait for your messages. You will wait for a weather report. Almost everything that this device can do involves beaming data to and from a man-made moon orbiting the earth which then relays that data to a ground station. Shit like that takes time. Leave your expectations of instant communication at the door while you're using one of these things. Finally, having a device designed to save your ass in an emergency is no substitute for the training required to get yourself out of trouble. Before you go anywhere that having a piece of hardware like this might be an asset, take a first aid course. Learn how to read a map and use a compass instead of simply relying on GPS: figure out what you need in order to survive while you’re exploring the places you love. Doing so should keep you from having to push that SOS button in so many situations and provide you with a sense of confidence that just might spill over into other areas of your life.
Watch this delightful film where LEGOs replace wood and tools
In this charming stop motion animation, YouTubers BrickBros created a lovely children's toy, shooting it in a way that makes it seem as if their woodshop consisted only of LEGO-based items. Some very clever uses of small pieces throughout. (more…)
Washington Post made a good 17-minute video about the rise and fall of Paul Manafort
Paul Manafort, lobbyist for tyrannical foreign leaders and Trump's former campaign manager, is currently being tried on a 32 counts of tax fraud and offshore money laundering. This video by the Washington Post shows how well connected he was (he worked for Reagan and Bush), and how awful he is (he lobbied to arm murderous warlords and worked to change the image of thuggish Eastern European leaders). Is this the end of the road for Manafort? If the kooky judge presiding over Manafort's trial doesn't keep him out of prison, Trump will might give him a pardon, but he could still get nailed for violating laws in New York or another state.
These "smart skin" stickers are also speakers
These stickers, thinner than temporary tattoos, have a grid of silver wires in them that make sound when electrified. They also work as microphones. From ScienceMag:After receiving an electric audio signal from a music player, the tiny loudspeaker heats up the wire grid to about 33°C, which replicates the sound pattern by changing the pressure of the surrounding air. Our ears pick up these changes in air pressure as sound waves.The microphone operates in reverse, converting speech sound waves back into an electric signal, which can then be stored and played back by a smartphone or computer. It can detect sound waves coming from the mouth, but it can also recognize words simply from the rumbling of the vocal cords through the skin, the team reports today in Science Advances.
This little gadget moves tiny drops of liquid around on a matrix
OpenDrop is a ~$800 microfluidics platform from GaudiLabs. It can be used to programmatically move droplets of liquid around a matrix. When I saw the video, I thought it was an LCD display, but it's real liquid being moved around.Potential applications are lab on a chip devices for automating processes of digital biology. However the present design should also open the technology to other field and allow experimentation to find new applications. Including the field of art, music, games and education.https://youtu.be/3zCAIKZ1F18https://youtu.be/2Y4pxhPit_I
How rainbow sprinkles are made
From Food Insider:Rainbow cake sprinkles have been around since the late 18th century, when French candy chefs used them as decorations. Today, liquid food coloring, shortening, and sugar are mixed in hot water to form the sprinkle's colorful dough. Long strands of the dough are broken into the tiny shapes we see on cakes, doughnuts, cookies, and ice cream. (via Laughing Squid)
An old viral bird video is perfectly enhanced with Led Zeppelin
This is brilliant. Make sure your sound is on.Twisted Sifter writes:The Internet has a penchant for taking things, adding to them and making them funnier, quirkier or even more bizarre. In this instance, we’ll go with all three. Apparently this was found on a now defunct Tumblr page, so the creator looms large and anonymous.For those unfamiliar, the audio is ‘Immigrant Song’ by Led Zeppelin...Here's the original bird video, sans the Zeppelin upgrade:https://youtu.be/hbmjtoQLvKshttps://twitter.com/emotionalpedant/status/1023983232021356544
Seattle nazi one-punch knocked out, reportedly removed armband when he awoke
This happened in September of last year, but I just saw it this morning. What a wonderful GIF!This gigantic asshole is reported to have been instigating fights.People should be afraid to wear symbols that openly identify themselves as supporting genocide.Red hats and Confederate flags are a gateway drug to German National Socialist armbands. Why do these morons all want America to be its greatest enemies? The Confederacy, Nazi Germany and Russia.The GIF came from humanpersonface, a Tumblr that covers the entire timeline of events with tweeted and socially shared images. Seattle Times published the following:Seattle police are responding Monday to a viral video of a man wearing a swastika armband getting punched in downtown Seattle.Police said they they received several reports Sunday of a man wearing a swastika instigating fights at Third Avenue and Pine Street. Police said they were on the scene within five minutes and found the man — with a Nazi flag armband — on the ground.“He declined to provide info about incident & left after removing his armband,” Seattle police said in a tweet about the incident on Monday.No one else at the scene contacted officers to make a report about the incident, police said.
SpiderOak warrant canary to be replaced by 'transparency report'
SpiderOak is a cloud backup service with a warrant canary: a formal statement that assured users that the company and its operators had never been made to secretly cooperate with the government, law enforcement or other surveilling authority. The canary reportedly disappeared this weekend, then reappeared, along with a statement saying it was being replaced by a "transparency report." https://twitter.com/SpiderOak/status/1025488889564327936Don't be mad at the company! The canary worked exactly as it was supposed to.
Artist creates enormous colorful sculptures by reusing single-use materials
Anyone who has ever worked on making a parade float knows how time-consuming the process is. Artist Crystal Wagner takes it to the next level with her gigantic amorphous abstract works.The Bedford Gallery commissions internationally renowned artist Crystal Wagner to create a large-scale, immersive piece that uses the entire gallery. Her colorful, mind-blowing installations are built from ordinary materials—primarily chicken wire and vinyl disposable tablecloths—that appear to grow organically within the gallery.More on her Instagram:https://www.instagram.com/p/BmBzwnQnXl6/?taken-by=artistcrystalwagnerhttps://www.instagram.com/p/Bl6VE6RHYcb/?taken-by=artistcrystalwagnerhttps://www.instagram.com/p/BlntsCCHiQl/?taken-by=artistcrystalwagnerhttps://www.instagram.com/p/BksvF6YHvOu/?taken-by=artistcrystalwagner• Crystal Wagner's FLUX @ The Bedford Gallery (YouTube / City of Walnut Creek)
Here's the story of how 'N Sync's Lance Bass won and then lost the Brady Bunch house
'N Sync's Lance Bass tweeted on Friday afternoon how he had won the bid to buy the real-life Brady Bunch house.https://twitter.com/LanceBass/status/1025489741913968640A couple of Brady kids congratulated him.Actress Maureen McCormick (Marcia Brady), wrote:https://twitter.com/MoMcCormick7/status/1025594773871050753Susan Olsen (Cindy Brady) wrote: https://www.instagram.com/p/BmEh09KHWCS/?taken-by=thesusanolsenBut by Saturday night, he shared that the agent called to tell him a Hollywood studio was willing to buy the house "at any cost": Marcia Marcia Marcia! Im feeling heartbroken today. As many of you may have heard, we placed the winning bid on the iconic Brady Bunch house—at least that’s what we were told. The agent representing the estate informed us we made the winning bid (which was WAY over the asking price) after the final deadline for all offers had passed—even writing up the “winning bid” for my team after informing me of the good news. Isn’t a deadline a deadline? This was a dream come true for me and I spent the night celebrating amongst friends, family, and fans alike. The next day, due to “unforeseen circumstances” the same agent informed us that there’s another Corporate Buyer (Hollywood studio) who wants the house at any cost. We were prepared to go even higher but totally discouraged by the sellers agent, they will outperform any bid with unlimited resources. How is this fair or legal?? How can I compete with a billion dollar corporate entity? I truly believe I was used to drive up the price of the home knowing very well that this corporation intended on making their offer and it’s not a good feeling. I feel used but most importantly I’m hurt and saddened by this highly questionable outcome. I just hope it is not demolished. #CrushedDream #ShadyAF #DouglasElliman #ShadyBrady Oh yea, register and vote November 6th!Bye bye bye.(EW)
Great deal on Nintendo "SNES edition" 3DS XL
Nintendo's retro-themed 3DS XL is rarely marked down, but is currently $150 at Amazon, which is $50 off the normal price.By far the weirdest and most portable of the company's growing rack of retro-fueled gear, it's also one that has a serious library of modern games to play too, in addition to the oldschool cool that comes with it—in this case, Super Mario Cart.Nintendo's classic consoles, dating to decades-old designs, now regularly top the hardware charts, driven by cheap prices and an endless reservoir of nostalgia.SNES edition 3DS XL [Amazon link]
The metal cover of The Fox (What Does the Fox Say) that you never knew you needed
A version of this song that doesn't make me want to burn down my surroundings? Yes please.
The UK's largest estate agency is on the verge of bankruptcy
Countrywide is the UK's largest property agents (they own estate agencies like Hamptons International, Bairstow Eves and Bridgfords), with 900 locations and 10,000 employees, and they're selling off shares at fire-sale prices in a desperate bid to raise £140 million to service their massive debts; the sum is 300% of the company's market cap, their shares are down 60% on the news, and the company blames plummeting London prices and Brexit jitters for their misfortunes. (more…)
Check out Kubrick's marked-up screenplay copy of The Shining
When preparing the screen adaptation of Stephen King's The Shining, director Stanley Kubrick highlighted, crossed out and wrote marginalia throughout his personal copy of the hardback novel, available online. (more…)
America's big cities are increasingly home to people living in their cars
In King County (which encompasses Seattle), the number of people living in their cars surged by 46% in the past year; and other big cities are catching up: LA, San Francisco, Portland, etc. (more…)
When should the press pay attention to trolls, lies and disinformation?
Whitney Phillips (previously), a researcher at the "think/do tank" Data & Society (previously) has prepared a snappy, short report on the paradox of covering disinformation campaigns, trolling, and outright lies? (more…)
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