Sunday, December 4, 2011

Link roundup

1. Ever wonder why Animal Planet isn't just puppy cams 24-7? Animal Planet President Marjorie Kaplan:

We did a lot of research and we were saying, "Why is this channel that's been around for 10 years--and everybody says they love--not watched?" We found out it wasn't delivering on what viewers wanted from animal content. The reason they watch television isn't because of the animal content; people watch television because they want to see people. Seeing people in the context of animals gives you great storytelling, but it's different than saying, "Come and watch us because you have a pet." So the idea is how do you get out of your air-conditioned life and experience something that's a little more raw and real. That's the understanding that grew out of River Monsters, and that then leads to Hillbilly Handfishin'.
2. Defusing unexploded WW2 bombs in Europe:
The Allies dropped a mountain of bombs on Berlin. About 465,000 tons of explosives hit the ground, and about one in eight bombs did not explode.

Ralf Kirschnick says that the reason for the high proportion of unexploded ordinance is that the British and Americans tested their bombs in a part of Scotland with particularly hard ground.

Three bomb disposal experts died in Gottingen last year
When they tried them out on the softer earth of Berlin, they sank into the ground - until today's property developers came along.

3. Ben Templesmith is looking for commissions.