Monday, February 29, 2016

Link roundup

1. "At least 100 workers at the construction site for Tesla Motors Inc.’s battery factory near Reno, Nevada, walked off the job Monday to protest use of workers from other states, a union official said."

“It’s a slap in the face to Nevada workers to walk through the parking lot at the job site and see all these license plates from Arizona and New Mexico,” Koch said in an interview. Those who walked out were among the hundreds on the site, he said.
2. "The Pentagon has a new secret weapon to neutralize sites containing chemical or biological weapons: rocket balls."
These are hollow spheres, made of rubberized rocket fuel; when ignited, they propel themselves around at random at high speed, bouncing off the walls and breaking through doors, turning the entire building into an inferno.
3.  Tiny camera drone wraps around your wrist like a watch when not in use.

When the local employer leaves town

When a Heinz factory closed:

Councilors were brought to the schools to help the kids cope, and it was just a mess. We are - and hopefully will forever be - the tomato capital of Canada. Heinz defined us, in a way. Our mascot is a personified tomato family, we have the tomato festival every year, our tourist booth is a giant fiberglass tomato... everything.

Link roundup

1. "Imagine buying an internet-enabled surveillance camera, network attached storage device, or home automation gizmo, only to find that it secretly and constantly phones home to a vast peer-to-peer (P2P) network run by the Chinese manufacturer of the hardware."

Now imagine that the geek gear you bought doesn’t actually let you block this P2P communication without some serious networking expertise or hardware surgery that few users would attempt.
2. "Oprah just lost $27 million on Weight Watchers"

3. "A closer look at Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter"
In Florida, the station structure next to the Hogwarts Express houses lockers for the Dragon Challenge rollercoaster attraction. Since that attraction is not present here in Hollywood, the space has been re-imagined as a great Hogwarts Express-themed photo-op. Unfortunately, the only way you can go in and take photos in or of the photo-op is to pay $25 for Universal’s photographers to take the picture and give you a print.

Land's End apologizes for featuring Gloria Steinem

LAT:

It must have seemed like a win-win at the time. Clothing retailer Lands' End, desperate to refurbish its image into something relevant and chic, featured an interview with legendary feminist Gloria Steinem in its spring catalog, complete with a photo spread of Steinem modeling items from the firm's latest collection. Steinem, for her part, got her new book plugged in the catalog copy.

...

The company has issued an abject public apology. "Some customers were troubled and concerned that we featured an interview with Gloria Steinem in a recent catalog," reads the statement. "It was never our intention to raise a divisive political or religious issue, so when some of our customers saw the recent promotion that way, we heard them. We sincerely apologize for any offense."

That has provoked a counter-backlash from abortion-rights advocates

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Scalia Took Dozens of Trips Funded by Private Sponsors"

Mr. Gillers and other legal experts said they saw nothing wrong with Mr. Scalia’s accepting a free room at Mr. Poindexter’s lodge. While the Ethics in Government Act, adopted after Watergate, requires high-level federal employees, including judges, to fill out disclosure reports for reimbursements worth more than $335, the visit to the ranch might not have required a formal disclosure, because accommodations provided by a private individual are exempt under current rules.
2. Cruise ship video game jam:
One young man takes the microphone and describes an 'endless birther' wherein the player must guide a baby through a birth canal. Next a girl outlines a game in which you play as God's hand, smiting Adam and Eve every time they move to touch a forbidden apple. A bearded Norwegian man (they are mostly bearded, and often luxuriously so) describes a VR game in which multiple players assume the role of chicks racing to peck their way out of their respective egg-shell, bobbing their heads back and forth
3. "So they used the word 'pretty,' they centered the activity on the 'home bedroom,' and then, because they'd gone too far and got criticized, they let the boys in, and a boy won, and, of course, they got criticized for that."

Link roundup

1. Don't sail over an underwater volcano.

2. "A new generation of wine drinkers came of age with screw caps and plastic bottle stoppers, but cork producers are mounting a campaign to win their loyalty"

They also began promoting cork’s environmental benefits, noting that the production of cork wine stoppers is a “carbon-negative” process
Via.

3. "Italian city to limit 'ethnic eateries' after explosion in kebab shops"
A ruling came into effect in the city of Verona this week prohibiting the openings of any new restaurants offering mostly "ethnic" or deep-fried food.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Friday, February 26, 2016

Navy SEAL Edward C. Byers Jr. to receive Medal of Honor



"As Byers protected Joseph, he spotted an AK-47-wielding Taliban guard just inches away. He continued to shield Joseph with his body as he grabbed the gunman by the throat, pinning him to a wall long enough for another SEAL to shoot him dead." Via.

Jaws poster



By FAP.

Drawings by Cory Loftis



For a show at Gallery Nucleus.

The Baroness



Available at Amazon. Via.

"Scalia's Death Prompts Dow to Settle Suits for $835 Million"

Bloomberg"

“Growing political uncertainties due to recent events with the Supreme Court and increased likelihood for unfavorable outcomes for business involved in class-action suits have changed Dow’s risk assessment of the situation,” the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Link roundup

1. "Why 49ers' 1991 helmet redesign was a historic failure"

Wright died in 2013, but his daughter, Beverly Wright Woo, spoke with Uni Watch shortly after his death and said he didn't mind the fans' response to his design. "He was disappointed, sure, but he had a good sense of humor about it all," she said. "He didn't take it personally, because he just gave the 49ers what they had asked for."
2. "The Rutherford County-made .50-caliber Barrett sniper rifle" is now the official rifle of Tennessee.

3. "Juliette, a white pony adorned with a fake horn, was posing with kids during a children's photo shoot in Madera Ranchos, California, near Fresno. She escaped"

"What if not just one random building or street, however, but an entire map is deliberately wrong?"

TandL:

This is the strange fate of digital mapping products in China: there, every street, building, and freeway is just slightly off its mark, skewed for reasons of national and economic security.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Windows 10 Users Start Seeing Full-Screen Ads As Screen Savers"

2. "Man Used Instagram To Follow Students And Steal Their Underwear, Police Say"

Galvan would allegedly hang out in public places until he spotted a woman he was interested in targeting. Then, he would check social media to see if she had checked in on Instagram, or posted a photo that had geotagged that particular location. If Galvan could find her there, he would allegedly go back through her photos and see if she had ever posted a photo from her home that also had its location data embedded. If successful, prosecutors say he would go to the woman's home and break in, then steal her electronics, jewelry, underwear and other personal belonging.
3. Twitter's missing manual.

Link roundup

1. "The Deactivation of the American Worker"

A worker laid off by losing her access to #sadmarketing will be replaced by someone who not only occupies her actual desk but has access to every document she’s uploaded, every meeting she attended and even the pithy asides about that very meeting; all the gifs and in-jokes and Hamilton sdlfkjsd, sure, but also the contacts relevant to the job, the advantage of being able to instantly catch-up because the information has been elegantly archived and arranged for future workers. Employees whose self-worth depends on their unique knowledge of the organization no longer have that benefit. Instead of a disorganized series of private inboxes, there is now a valuable public record. The job is a body of work; the person doing it is more interchangeable than ever.
2. "In Westlake Village, where the median home price is $930,400...there have been 11 head baseball coaches" since 1985.
"I remember saying, 'This is going to be great, I'm a former athlete, I'm going to be cheering for the kids,'" she said. "I didn't realize most of my time was going to be [spent] dealing with upset parents and coaches. 'Why is my child not playing? Why is he not on varsity? Why is the coach doing that?' It was putting out fires."
3. "Tesco, Britain’s largest supermarket chain and a bellwether of sorts for popular tastes, is dispensing with the traditional curved [croissant] as of Friday and instead will sell only straight ones."
It is easier to spread jam on the straight variety.

Link roundup

1. Scouts are concerned that Arkansas quarterback Brandon Allen's hands are too small.  (Previously: "Johnny Manziel's hands are enormous, and it's helping his draft stock".)

2. "Marine biologist violates probation when she gets too close to otter"

3. Nightmare fuel.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Justice Scalia spent his last hours with members of this secretive society of elite hunters"

Members of the worldwide, male-only society wear dark-green robes emblazoned with a large cross and the motto “Deum Diligite Animalia Diligentes,” which means “Honoring God by honoring His creatures,” according to the group’s website. Some hold titles, such as Grand Master, Prior and Knight Grand Officer.
2. "King of the village."

Yakult Swallows Mascot deluxe action figure



Via.

Link roundup

1. This post tells me it's a good time to say that The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015 is great. Includes Theodora Goss's Cimmeria.

2. "This Isn’t Even John Kasich’s Worst Presidential Bid"

The Ohio governor finished fifth in Nevada, behind even Ben Carson. Still, this is far from his saddest run for president—in college, he lost and took the board of elections to court.
3. Good to see I wasn't the only mind-shattered parent who did this.

Link roundup

1. "Knife-wielding crabs? Here’s the troubling truth behind these viral videos."

It appears the knife's handle is jammed into the claw, and the crab either can't let got of it or is instinctively clamping down on the weapon.

...

The crab is "absolutely distressed,"
2. From Matt Taibbi's lengthy article about Trump:
He talks, for instance, about the anti-trust exemption enjoyed by insurance companies, an atrocity dating back more than half a century, to the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945. This law, sponsored by one of the most notorious legislators in our history (Nevada Sen. Pat McCarran was thought to be the inspiration for the corrupt Sen. Pat Geary in The Godfather II), allows insurance companies to share information and collude to divvy up markets.

Neither the Republicans nor the Democrats made a serious effort to overturn this indefensible loophole during the debate over the Affordable Care Act.

Trump pounds home this theme in his speeches, explaining things from his perspective as an employer. "The insurance companies," he says, "they'd rather have monopolies in each state than hundreds of companies going all over the place bidding ...  It's so hard for me to make deals  ... because I can't get bids."

He goes on to explain that prices would go down if the state-by-state insurance fiefdoms were eliminated, but that's impossible because of the influence of the industry. "I'm the only one that's self-funding ...  Everyone else is taking money from, I call them the bloodsuckers."

Trump isn't lying about any of this.
3. Pink fairy armadillo.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Super-Discount Grocery Store Aldi To Open 45 Stores In SoCal This Year"

Aldi will request customers deposit a quarter to use a shopping cart. The philosophy follows that if people want their quarter back, they'll be inclined to return the cart to its proper location next to the grocery store's entrance. No employee needed to retrieve all the carts lazy customers leave lying all over the parking area.
2. "this is the same Valencia team whose player, David Ruiz, appeared to pull off one of the most egregious dives in the history of the game, take a bunch of shit for it the world over, only to later have it come out that he’d actually torn his ACL on the play."

3. "Now you can recreate this magical meal by making your own version of Rey’s Portion Bread in under a minute."

4. "Let’s talk about that photo of Mark Zuckerberg and the sad VR men"
This is a beautiful photo that captures many of our anxieties about Virtual Reality and Screen Time and Wealth Inequality and Interpersonal Interaction. That Mark Zuckerberg saw this photo and enjoyed what it said about The Future so much that he posted it to his Facebook page adds another, even richer layer of Art.

Triumph the Insult Comic Dog Talks to Young Voters



Bonus:

Pop-up hot dog toaster



$20 at Amazon.

Link roundup

1. Modern day Morganna.  (NSFW?)

2. "By terrorizing island raccoons, scientists finally confirm that large predators can affect their prey through fear alone."

The result is a landscape of fear—a psychological topography that exists in the minds of prey, complete with mountains of danger and valleys of safety.

...

This concept came to attention in the 1990s, when gray wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park after having been exterminated seven decades prior. Ecologists showed that the park’s elk would spend so much time watching out for the re-emergent wolves that they spent less time eating and sired fewer young. They died in numbers way beyond what the wolves were actually killing, and their losses rippled throughout Yellowstone. The trees they ate grew taller, providing more wood for beavers and nesting sites for songbirds. The entire park changed, and all thanks to fear of the big, bad wolf.
3. "U.S. health regulators acknowledged they miscalculated the amount of formaldehyde emitted from some of Lumber Liquidators' laminated floor products."
The error occurred because the CDC neglected to convert feet to meters
4. Disgraced astronomer "says he is a casualty of a hypersensitive atmosphere that turned his efforts to be caring toward women into sexual harassment." Previously:
according to a university investigation letter...[he] engaged in sexual activity with a student who was “incapacitated due to alcohol and therefore could not consent.”

Monday, February 22, 2016

Link roundup

1. Good interview/podcast with Rob Jones and Mitch Putnam of Mondo. (Their goal is for posters to sell out in 5-10 minutes.)

2. I choose to believe this:

Apparently the Star Wars Ep VIII crew have drones that they're using to take out drones operated by snoopers trying to get on-set footage.
3. "Oil is now so cheap even pirates aren’t stealing it any more"

Harry Potter prints



$65 and up.

Link roundup

1. "Fun and games aboard Rob Gronkowski’s cruise"

There were also plenty of cruisers who had no idea that good-time Gronkowski was among them. The Norwegian Pearl holds more than 2,300 passengers, but only 700 of them were part of Gronk’s cruise. The rest thought they were on the boat for an ordinary vacation to the Bahamas.
2. "the 'John Wayne’ of Cajun country."
Capt. Higgins is something of a viral star, at least as much as a cop in backwater Louisiana could be. Last year, CBS News ran a story on the man they say is called “the ‘John Wayne’ of Cajun country.” His videos are so anticipated that the hometown Acadiana Advocate was at the taping for a behind-the-scenes photoshoot.
3. "A Louisiana Tribe Is Now Officially A Community Of Climate Refugees"
Since the 1950s, the tribe has lost 98 percent of its land to rising sea levels, coastal erosion and flooding. Experts suspect the island will be completely submerged within 50 years
4. "What was the most interesting war tactic ever performed in history?"
The UK air dropped matchbooks into enemy lines which contained instructions on how a soldier could fake illnesses to get sent home.

Once the Nazi leaders caught wind of this, they stopped sending their troops home who claimed to have said illnesses. Not only did this get healthy enemy troops sent home, it eventually ended with genuinely ill troops being sent back into combat spreading real disease amongst their ranks.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

"Mall Goth Bucky"



Yuko Ota suggests a character design for Avengers Academy.

New MLB approved protective headgear for pitchers





Link roundup

1. "10 years ago, in 2006, there was only FF.net, and it was there that a fan fiction legend was born: Tara Gilesbie (aka XXXbloodyrists666XXX) published the first chapter of My Immortal"

a multi-chaptered Harry Potter story about a young American Hogwarts student called Ebony, a leather-clad, eyelinered “goffik” who has a relationship with Draco Malfoy and later is sent back in time to curb Voldemort’s murderous urges with the love of a goff woman.

...

“Hi my name is Ebony Dark’ness Dementia Raven Way and I have long ebony black hair (that’s how I got my name) with purple streaks and red tips that reaches my mid-back and icy blue eyes like limpid tears and a lot of people tell me I look like Amy Lee (AN: if u don’t know who she is get da hell out of here!). I’m not related to Gerard Way but I wish I was because he’s a major fucking hottie.”
2. "Amar'e Stoudemire's Picks"
"I find it unique and interesting that the artist repurposed a plate and turned it into a work of art."
3. "We wrongly think things that are different are impossible."
Something that is off-the-charts entertaining is hard to stop.

Snowglobe inspired by the classic movie poster for The Thing






Snow globe based on John Carpenter's The Thing by CSE.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Link roundup

1. Junk mail in the 1800s.

2. "One of Iraq’s anti-corruption leaders sat in his office, waving his hands in exasperation."

“There is no solution,” he said. “Everybody is corrupt, from the top of society to the bottom. Everyone. Including me.”

...

“At least I am honest about it,” he shrugged. “I was offered $5m by someone to stop investigating him. I took it, and continued prosecuting him anyway.”

...

If, as projected, global oil prices remain at historic lows, Iraq will be unable to pay some of its civil servants, or honour pledges to build roads and power stations in the next financial year. The gravity of the crisis has created uncomfortable reckonings for Iraq’s political class, military leaders and some senior religious figures, who have led a staggering 13-year pillage that has left Iraq consistently rated as one of the top five least transparent and most corrupt countries in the world.
3. "A 20-meter-high slide descends inside a five-story shopping mall in Shanghai, China, on February 16, 2016."

4. Peyton Manning.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Concerned Citizens Turn Out to Be Political Theater"

Some of those scripted lines, he says were provided by recent UCLA graduate Adam Swart, CEO of a company called Crowds on Demand, which will stage rallies and demonstrations for any almost candidate or cause.

Swart says he has employed actors to sway city officials in meetings across the country.
2. "A Moscow advert declaring that “smoking kills more people than Obama” has gone viral, becoming the latest in a string of actions condemning the US president as a mass killer."

3. The time Lance Stephenson smashed his car trying to sneak past the security gate at the Clippers' practice facility.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Link roundup

1. "The Ghost Rapes of Bolivia"

2. "The Mayor of Crystal City, Texas, Just Can't Stop Getting Arrested." (Great town seal, too.)

3. The Secret Lives of Tumblr Teens

Each social media network creates a particular kind of teenage star: Those blessed with early-onset hotness are drawn to YouTube, the fashionable and seemingly wealthy post to Instagram, the most charismatic actors, dancers, and comedians thrive on Vine. On Facebook, every link you share and photo you post is a statement of your identity. Tumblr is the social network that, based on my reporting, is seen by teens as the most uncool....The culture of Tumblr began to be dominated by teens—weird teens.

...

teens perform joy on Instagram but confess sadness on Tumblr.

The world's most dangerous monkey

At the Atlantic. Also:

A tiger tries to grab a live chicken offered by tourists inside a sightseeing vehicle at the wildlife world in the Locajoy Holiday Theme Park in Chongqing, China, on January 8, 2016. Tourists and predators have switched places at the zoo, where visitors are paying to be locked in a cage and stalked by big cats and bears. Chunks of fresh meat and live chicken are tied to the outside of a vehicle, which drives through the enclosure, in a bid to attract the predators and give tourists the closest possible dining experience with them

From an interview with Lin-Manuel Miranda

Link:

Hip-hop isn’t the standard Broadway music. And you’ve incorporated this nearly all-minority cast rapping, hip-hopping. This is about guys who wore powdered wigs. They wrote the federalist papers. How does it work, why does it work?

“The casting is not ‘minority.’ Your piece is going to be dated in about five years when we’re the majority. So you might want to say ‘people of color.’

...

Are there lessons from the election of 1800 for voters of 2016?

“Every election is a remix of the one before. It only feels contemporary because we’ve been fighting about the same thing for some 200 years. The election of 1800 was the first contemporary election. It was even more ugly, even more bitter than what we’re seeing today. I know that sounds crazy, but ‘twas ever thus. And that gives me hope as an American. It means we haven’t fallen from grace. You had Adams and Jefferson calling each other hermaphrodite and one accusing the other of being dead and hoping news would travel quickly to win the election. It got dirty right away. It’s always been a really elbow-throwing time every four years or so. So that gives me hope as an American because ‘twas ever thus.”

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Creating the title sequence for Spectre

From an interview at Art of the Title:

Well, we do a casting session that’s like anything else. I mean, it’s slightly embarrassing, you get these two people who don’t really know each other, get them to smooch a bit and to pretend that there’s an octopus in between them.

...

Let’s talk about the music a little bit more. Radiohead recorded a version of the SPECTRE opening and released it online recently. Was that ever part of the conversations you were involved with?

Daniel: I haven’t heard it! I think I did know that they’d done one, but I hadn’t heard it. Is it any good?

...

Actually, this one bit that the producers and Sam just wouldn’t let me do — at the end of that little sequence with all the lovers kissing and the octopus, there’s this close-up of two mouths coming together. Originally I was going to have the girl’s tongue coming out of the girl’s mouth going into the male mouth, but it wasn’t a tongue, it was an octopus tentacle. And they all just went, “Yeccchhhh, that’s too much!” So that hit the cutting room floor! [laughs] I’d gone too far!

Marvel covers



Marvel Guidebook by Mike Del Mundo and and A-FORCE #5 by Kris Anka. Via.

Link roundup

1. "Ben Simmons might be shooting with the wrong hand"

2. "the wizard nazis are only all in one house because JKR doesn't understand people that well, anyway"

3. "China is to relocate more than 9,000 people before the unveiling of the world’s largest radio telescope later this year – a move that Beijing hopes will boost the global hunt for extraterrestrial life."

Monday, February 15, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Opening Shot In Rubio’s 'Morning Again In America' Ad Appears To Be Canada"

2. Summary of the story in Prophet.

3. The sequel to Republic Commando that never was:

There were two competing stories that were being pitched, one being developed by Tim Longo and one by lead level designer Kevin Schmitt. In one, you would have played the side story of Revenge of the Sith and carried out Order 66, hunting down Jedi as a team. In the other, Sev would have been the first man in the Rebellion army -- the tagline was something like, "Every Rebellion begins with a single soldier."

Tim's plan would have had Sev start the Rebellion army, training a new generation of soldiers to fight the Empire: In my own imagining, I like to believe he'd go after his pod-brothers and counter-program them so they could fight the Empire together.
4. "Why Do New Starbucks Drinks Have ‘Chocolatey’ Chips, Not Chocolate?"

Link roundup

1. "Eliot Spitzer investigated over alleged choking incident"

2. Matt Taibbi about his days in the the Mongolian Basketball Association:

One is how the league came into being, which is amazing. The President of the Mongolian Stock Exchange had gone to U.S. on an exchange program in 1994, the year the Knicks and the Rockets played in the Finals. He fell immediately in love with NBA basketball, and he’d record every single game in his dorm room — on videotapes. So when he went back to Mongolia, he brought all these tapes with him, and he illegally broadcast the entire playoff series in Mongolia, and they were the highest-rated television programs in the history of the country. Everybody was completely addicted to basketball.
3. "'Josie and the Pussycats' Meet Satan, 1973"

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Link roundup

1. "The Ugly, Sexist Aftermath of Appearing on 'Jeopardy!'"

2. "Chipotle needs to rethink its business practices, which include working alongside food alarmists, anti-GMO activists, the organic food industry, and other modern food system critics to frighten, distract and misinform the American public."

3. Peyton Manning.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Vaping Congressman in the Pocket of Big Vape"

2. One explanation for rural meth addiction.

3. Diver cutting a whale shark loose.

Link roundup

1. NYTimes reviews Zoolander:

Mr. Stiller is a perfect case study in male insecurity. Depending on the role, the camera angle, the costume, and the hair and makeup, Mr. Stiller, 50, swings between polarities of trollishness and desirability. In some movies, he appears dwarfish and deformed with a head that’s too big for his body and empty space-alien eyes. He is of average height but looks shorter. And when bulked up, he appears hunched and musclebound. But when he fixes those baby blues on the camera and thrusts out his jaw to accentuate his cheekbones, he can pass as handsome: just barely.
2. Publishers making as much money with articles on Facebook as on their own sites.

3. "Bullying was Chris Christie's trump card, before Trump got in the race"
nobody was better at bullying other people than Christie until Trump came on the scene, and then suddenly he was no longer unique. Christie was just a predator in a closed system that suddenly gained a new apex predator

"Mattel is about to resurrect ThingMaker as a $299.99, family-friendly 21st Century 3D printer"




USAT.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Vintage Valentine’s Day recipes"

2. "Even by Super Bowl standards, the constipation ad shown Sunday was an eye-grabber"

With pain pill use booming across the country, the U.S. market for treating opioid constipation is projected to reach at least $500 million a year by 2019
3. "The Russians Make The Best Truck In The Universe For $50K"

Link roundup

1. "NBA Releases Emojis for Each All-Star"

2. Comic books year in review part 2.

he nominated his own comics
...
an ALL-MALE Women in Comics panel
...
some historians might remember Roosevelt as America’s second-most racist president
3. An interesting story about Kissinger and Popeye.

Link roundup

1. High school pitcher to play for travel team instead of high school.

2. "The Fakelore of the Apache Wedding Blessing"

Its origins were not Native American, as suggested by a number of anthologies and “officiant services” websites, but the imagination of Elliot Arnold, author of the 1947 ethnographic novel Blood Brothers, which later became the 1950 film Broken Arrow.
3. "'it could be the case' – is actually associated with more persuasive arguments."

Link roundup

1. "the savanna theory of happiness"

More intelligent individuals experience lower life satisfaction with more frequent socialization with friends.
2. "Target Introducing New Shopping Carts Designed For Children And Adults With Disabilities"

3. "A wild elephant wandered into the streets and alleys of Siliguri, India, on February 10, leaving behind a trail of startled residents, damaged structures, trampled cars, and smashed motorbikes." (Photo gallery.)

4. Spam email: "Nigerian astronaut lost in space needs $3m to get home"

JPX x COARSE vinyl toy



Coming soon.

Link roundup

1. "Hit by a string of scandals over food safety controls, McDonald's business in Japan has posted its worst annual results since going public 15 years ago. The company reported a net loss of 34.704 billion yen — around $303 million."

2. "The Los Angeles city attorney’s office is trying to ban a group of massage parlor owners from operating within the city, accusing them of running fronts for prostitution in Eagle Rock [North Hollywood, and Wilmington]"

3. Woman with 64k followers tweets phone number...and is quite pleased with the the responses she got.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Link roundup

1. The chief financial officer of FanDuel says poker is not a game of skill.

The reality is within poker, every time you shuffle the deck, it creates an element of luck that trumps it basically to being much more a chance-dominated game than a skill-dominated game. If you look at our data, the players that are good, are frankly consistently good. It is truly a game of skill.
2. "Katharine Hepburn aka the best neighbor in the world."

3. Android phone will ship in a "hard plastic box that doubles as a Google Cardboard-compliant VR viewer."

"What are some unethical life hacks?"

Part of the top rated comment at Quora:

When you have drugs on you, also carry a helium balloon with you at all times. If you get busted by the cops, attach the drugs to the balloon and let go. The police will not be able to find the drugs, and they probably would get fired for shooting at a balloon. Unless you use a black balloon.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Link roundup

1. "The challenge was to take a scientist that sits at a desk, represent what they do in visuals and make it look cool."

2. "Rikers Island Guard Nicole Bartley Busted For Rape, Smuggling Drugs"

Bartley, who says she was in love with the inmate, was found out when a drug-sniffing dog
3. "Designer Dominic Wilcox asked 450 kids to draw the most imaginative inventions they could think of and later, surprisingly, made their dreams a reality."

Link roundup

1. "The West Hollywood club’s backers include Gwyneth Paltrow, the actress, who is a member of the London Club. To become a member one must be nominated by an existing member and participate in or have an interest in art, literature or science."

2. "The new (and much improved) ‘Bluebook’ caught in the copyright cross-hairs"

Students at NYU Law School have prepared a new, streamlined, open-access citation system and gotten it ready for publication; but...the Harvard Law Review Association has hired counsel and is threatening to sue
3. "How A Serial Catfish Tricked Famous Men And Almost Got Away With It"
Allegedly, Sean Combs cheated on his longtime girlfriend with a singer named Seriya. But Seriya doesn’t exist, and is one of several fake characters from a master catfisher.

Link roundup

1. Cold case playing cards:

The playing card that set this chain of events in motion was produced as part of an experimental effort by Connecticut law enforcement agencies designed to generate leads in cold cases. Starting in 2010, the Department of Corrections has distributed thousands of these special decks to prisons throughout the state, with the hope that inmates will see them, experience a flash of recognition, and come forward with information.
2. "The TCJ 2015 Year-in-Review"
Lepore should have waited until the comic’s completion (which came in October 2015) before saying anything out loud about this comic book sold to the public on an installment basis at a cost of $3.99 per installment.
3. Firewatch wallpapers.

Space travel posters by NASA/JPL



Twelve posters available as high-res printable files.

Link roundup

1. "Reasons I Would Not Have Been Burned As A Witch In The Early Modern Era No Matter What I Would Like To Believe About Myself And Would Have In Fact Been Among The Witch-Burners"

2. "A Skeptic Infiltrates a Cruise for Conspiracy Theorists"

The people on the cruise tended to be there with a primary focus on one or two big issues. They were there to learn about vaccines. Or they were there to find out more about astrology. But they were interested in everything else. I didn’t talk to anybody who wasn’t willing to kind of go outside their comfort zone.
3. "Welcome to the Age of Robot Animals"
And while we’re not there yet, the very rapid rise of animal monitors and geotracking implants — in sharks, in hawks — does point the way to a possible near future in which the world’s wildlife is so intricately surveilled that we stop being able to reasonably refer to it as wildlife at all. (Maybe better not to mention that to ravens, who are, scientists have just discovered, quite capable of paranoia.)

And then there are all the ways we’ve set about transforming wildlife directly. There are the much-hyped GMO phytoplankton, for instance, designed to gobble up carbon in the ocean to help cool the planet. There are fish that go neon to send pollution alerts, and plants we’ve made to change color, too, when growing on top of land mines.
4. "Hackers used malware to penetrate the defenses of a Russian regional bank and move the ruble-dollar rate more than 15 percent in minutes, according to a Moscow-based cyber-security firm hired to investigate the attack."

Monday, February 8, 2016

Link roundup

1. "In a rare move by a Los Angeles elected official, a Los Angeles City Councilman on Friday hauled out boxes of staff memos and other private papers belonging to his predecessor and handed them over to reporters."

In releasing the documents, Ryu’s team stressed that they weren’t accusing LaBonge of any misdeeds.
2. "'It took us almost four years to get the [Game of Thrones] pilot made,'"
“literally, so much of it was reshot that a different director got credit.”
3. 2008 article: "Young women are growing increasingly frustrated with the fanatical support of Barack and gleeful bashing of Hillary."

Midair lightsaber strike on a Tie Fighter





And other Star Wars Battlefront stunts.

Link roundup

1. "An expansion project for a girls school in Brentwood has some residents up in arms and many asking for the renovation to be stopped."

2. "If you think Cam Newton’s postgame presser showed immaturity, what did you think of the several hours leading up to it, in which Newton dressed up like a cyborg and threw footballs at people to make the numbers go up on a giant glowing scoreboard? His actual job is to live out an eight-year-old’s dream birthday party on television"

3. Related, "The biggest, most wonderful moment at the end of a storied career, and [Peyton Manning]’s selling me shitty beer."

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Ink color, to [Sovereign Citizens], is crucial. They believe that black or blue ink signifies corporations; red ink signifies flesh and blood people."

They think red ink fingerprints are the highest form of ID. Some even file legal documents with their fingerprints stamped in blood.
2. Fake Rothko trial.

3. "Everyone Hates Martin Shkreli. Everyone Is Missing the Point"
Most of our Presidential candidates claim to disdain Washington politicians, but, on Thursday, Shkreli put that disdain into practice—and helped illustrate, to anyone paying attention, why it is so richly deserved. He is candid even when candor doesn’t pay. (Can there be any doubt that Hillary Clinton, after her own recent appearance before Gowdy and some of his colleagues, would have loved to send a tweet like Shkreli’s?) Last fall, Trump said that Shkreli “looks like a spoiled brat”; in fact, he is the son of a doorman, born to parents who emigrated from Albania. Look at him now! True, he has those indictments to worry about. But he is also a self-made celebrity, thanks to a business plan that makes it harder for us to ignore the incoherence and inefficiency of our medical industry. He rolls his eyes at members of Congress, he carries on thoughtful conversations with random Internet commenters, and, unlike most of our public figures, he may never learn the arts of pandering and grovelling.

Solo family portrait

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Black Sabbath concert poster



By Becky Cloonan.

Link roundup

1. "Ever wonder why the American bald eagle is always photographed from the side?"

2. "Politicians Banned From Funding Their Official Portraits with Tax Dollars"

3. Star Wars gif featuring moments from the first six movies.

Monument Valley fan art



By Chrissie Zullo.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Link roundup

1. "Netrunner: Every deck tells a story"

2. "Two executives at a Los Angeles-based real estate development company and two of their employees have been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges they defrauded government agencies of millions of dollars in funds for housing low-income families."

ADI’s financial activities first came to light in 2010, as part of divorce proceedings between Karimi and Jannki Mithaiwala, the daughter of the company’s founder. A court-appointed receiver assigned to oversee the company soon informed the divorce court he had uncovered “potential fraud and criminal activity.”
3. Translucent whale sculptures:
In this work, six whales are swimming in a circle; these represents the six stages of Samsara.

Inside each whale encapsulates various objects, such as submarine volcano, sailboat, and a sea of clouds.

Link roundup

1. "Russia's Arctic mechanized infantry unit holds military drills to learn how to ride reindeer sleds at a reindeer farm"

2. "XCOM 2 Is Ridiculously Exciting"

The game itself works so hard and does so much to create a constant sense of near-euphoric drama
3. "Man Sucked from Somali Jet May Have Been Suicide Bomber"

4. "Why Rand Paul Lost"
Just before the Republican debate last year in Colorado, a senior aide to Rand Paul had an idea.

Sergio Gor, the campaign’s communications director, decided he wanted to obtain an eagle for Paul to appear with before the debate.

Staffers were dispatched to try to find the eagle to rent, according to four sources with direct knowledge of the incident. One estimated that several people spent half a day on the task. Eventually a falcon was located, but by that point the scheme had leaked out to other staffers, who quashed it.

“We spent like half a day on this ridiculous project that I’m not even sure was approved by the higher-ups,” said one staffer. After that, other staffers nicknamed Gor “Condor.”

Link roundup

1. "The University of Louisville announced on Friday that it would self-impose a postseason ban on its men’s basketball team for the 2015-16 campaign"

The decision comes as the NCAA continues to investigate Katina Powell’s claims that she and other escorts were paid thousands of dollars and given game tickets by former basketball staffer Andre McGee in exchange for dancing for and having sex with U of L players and recruits from 2010-14.
2. Food bloggers "tricked" intro eating McDonald's food prepared by a former Top Chef contestant (as a McDonald's promotion), realize after a few courses that something is wrong with the food:
Is it synthetic food?
3. Creating sounds for The Force Awakens:
the Kylo Ren Force rumble—the really chunky and animalistic rumble—is my cat’s purring. It’s heavily pitched and slowed version of my cat’s purr that becomes Kylo Force rumble.

When the rathtar has his mouth on the cockpit of the Falcon, when it’s trying to eat the cockpit, that is me literally choking myself. [Laughs] Finger down my throat in front of the mic to accomplish that and then it’s pitched down.

‘Travel posters’ for NASA



IC:

These 3 commissioned pieces are part of JPL’s Visions Of The Future 2016 Calendar – an internal gift to JPL and NASA staff, as well as scientists, engineers, government and university staff. The artwork for each month will also be released as a free downloadable poster at the NASA JPL site soon.

NASA JPL was kind enough to let us sell our own limited-edition signed posters and prints. Those are available here.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Mezco's One: 12 Collection Punisher figures



The newly revealed figures includes multiple Captain Americas and Daredevils.

Link roundup

1. "Fencer will be first U.S. Olympian to compete while wearing a hijab"

2. "Monks delivered via Amazon as role of Japanese temples fade"

Many Japanese, however, welcome the service as a consumer-friendly approach to Buddhist rituals, whose cost is often perceived as murky and overpriced.
3. "Where Los Angeles and Other American Cities Used to Store Their Nuclear Missiles"
Los Angeles in particular, thanks to its aerospace facilities, military bases, and booming postwar population, became one of the most fortified regions in the United States.

...

At the intersection of Woodley Avenue and Victory Boulevard in Van Nuys, Nike missiles—named, like the athletic shoe, after the Greek goddess of victory—were housed in silos until 1974.
4. "Meet the woman responsible for the greatest gifs on the internet"
“Literally everyone assumes I am a straight white man,” she said. That’s why Cat started posting pictures of herself along with the Animated Text gifs in recent months, to “prove I am female, that I am black, that I am gay,” and not that unholy trinity of falsely presumed neutrality: straight, white, and male.

Link roundup

1. "this painting by Jean-Léon Jérôme is called 'Truth Coming Out of Her Well to Shame Mankind' and it rules so hard" (NSFW)

2. "The feds are killing off Clearview, the new highway sign font"

But, it turns out, later research has not backed up this initial belief. It turns out that all that research suggesting the new font might be more legible was more due to the fact that older, worn signs were being replaced with nice, fresh, clean signs which were, naturally, more legible.

Clearview also made legibility worse
3. "Photos of Women and Giant-Ass Mainframe Computers from the 1960s"

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Mr. Rogers Sweater Changing Mug



"When you pour in hot liquid -- Mr. Rogers changes into his famous cardigan sweater." Microwave safe, and $15 at Amazon.

Augmented Reality Climbing



Interactive rock wall at Brooklyn Boulders.

"Phoenician Sailor is one of the stars of 'ASMR horror,' a niche community within the already-niche world around the 'ASMR' sensory phenomenon."

Motherboard:

Late at night, you click on “☼ ══╣♥♥ The ULTIMATE ASMR MAKEOVER!!! ♥♥╠══ ☼”. It’s hosted by a man called “Phoenician Sailor.” He has greying hair, a pale and narrow face, and the calmest grey eyes you have ever seen.

This man whispers to you, telling you everything will be all right. You are beginning to feel very relaxed. The video cuts abruptly to a masked figure shrouded in darkness, then the camera moves to a new setting. That same man is leaning down from above you. “I’m reasonably certain you’re not in any pain,” he says. He produces a syringe. He is wearing surgical gloves.

This is not very relaxing anymore. And yet his voice makes you calm, so calm, enough that you continue to watch as he probes, and scratches, and cuts, and suddenly his white gloves are stained with red.

Link roundup

1. "Professor Who Helped Expose Crisis in Flint Says Public Science Is Broken"

In 2003 the Virginia Tech civil-engineering professor said that there was lead in the Washington, D.C., water supply, and that the city had been poisoning its residents. He was right.

Last fall he said there was lead in the water in Flint, Mich., despite the reassurances of state and local authorities that the water was safe. He was right about that, too.

...

Q. Do you have any sense that perverse incentive structures prevented scientists from exposing the problem in Flint sooner?

A. Yes, I do. In Flint the agencies paid to protect these people weren’t solving the problem. They were the problem. What faculty person out there is going to take on their state, the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency?
2. Stills from Return to Oz.

3. "Santorum was made an honorary Pizza Ranch employee."
His campaign chairman noted that he had been to 120 of the chain’s locations. He was presented with a Pizza Ranch T-shirt – a fleece, too.
4. "Top paralympic sprinter banned for doping violation"

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Grayson #16 pages



By Mikel Janin.

Link roundup

1. "Burger King employees break windows after prank call about gas leak, Morro Bay police say"

Employees of the Burger King on 781 Quintana Road received a call from someone who indicated that they were a representative from the fire department advising of an emergency, according to reports. The caller said that the business’ windows needed to be broken for ventilation
2. "So much for the 'Oprah effect,' as Weight Watchers stock fades"
the Oprah tweet surge is already fading, displaying the half-life of a typical New Year's resolution to lose weight.
3. "I had never heard of Okhlos before playing it at PAX South today, but it quickly got my attention. It plays sort of like a twin-stick shooter, but instead of aiming a gun you're directing an ever growing mob of angry, Greek citizens that continues to grow more raucous until they are able to level buildings and kill the gods themselves."

Link roundup

1. "Is this the perfect save icon?"

We’re now approaching an era in which the predominant user base interacting with this are young teens. Users with little or no experience in ever using a floppy disk.
2. "One of Africa’s Biggest Dams Is Falling Apart"
Mosul Dam’s predicament is partly a result of the ongoing war; many maintenance workers have not returned there since August of 2014, when ISIS fighters briefly took control. (Iraqi and Kurdish forces soon regained it.) But the main issue is that, like many such dams, the project shouldn’t exist in the first place. Opened in 1986, it was built on unstable gypsum bedrock, requiring grout to be constantly injected into the foundation to prevent the dam’s collapse. That work has ceased. In 2006, long before ISIS began making headlines, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers called Mosul Dam “the most dangerous dam in the world.”

Kariba’s difficulties are more complicated.
3. Adventure Time crew made cameos in the latest episode.

Link roundup

1. "San Francisco Welcomed Super Bowl on Handshake Deal; No Contract, No Public Review"

This method allowed the bid terms — including agreeing to never bill the NFL for public services — to go forward without a public review at the Board of Supervisors. By contrast, Santa Clara's City Council scrutinized the hosting agreement and voted on it publicly.
2. "The Abortion Rights Dystopia Brought On by the Zika Crisis"
After all, the element that brings this crisis from “emergency” into “totally fucking dystopian” realm is the fact that the virus is wreaking havoc in countries with dismal, even draconian approaches to abortion and contraception.
3. "Deadpool was originally a ripoff of a DC Comics villain ... and it worked out OK"
So, Nicieza wasn't insinuating that Liefeld may not have known about a similar character at a competing company — it was patently impossible for Liefeld to not have been aware of Deathstroke. Here's Deathstroke over on the left.

Liefeld was proposing they create a very similar looking, similarly named, supernaturally agile assassin character, who even used the same weapons as a character who belonged to Marvel's biggest competitor.

What did the two young creators do in the face of this problem? Honestly, this is where the story reaches its wackiest point. They decided to lean into it.

Deathstroke's real name is Slade Wilson. So they named Deadpool "Wade Wilson."
4. There's a lot going on in this headline.

Monday, February 1, 2016

"the story of a wife who lured an Orange County fugitive out of Iran"

LA Times:

When three men escaped from the Orange County jail, officials quickly decided only one of the escapees possessed the cunning and resourcefulness to mastermind it: Hossein Nayeri, a 37-year-old ex-Marine who faced charges in a grisly kidnapping and torture plot.

Around Nayeri's former wife, 29-year-old Cortney Shegerian, the anxiety was extreme. She was rushed into hiding. She assumed a fake name. During the eight days Nayeri was on the run — from his escape on Jan. 22 to his capture Saturday morning — the people around her feared for her life.

As the manhunt dragged on, authorities were convinced that if Nayeri remained in California, it was to stalk and kill her. Her lawyers, and the district attorney's office, implored the media not to mention her name, for fear of inflaming him.

The source of Nayeri's rage? Shegerian had played a central role in putting him behind bars in the first place, participating in an elaborate law-enforcement scheme to lure him out of Iran — and into an extradition-friendly country — in November 2013.

"Benoît Violier’s Death Shines Light on High-Pressure Restaurant World"

NYT:

In the rarefied galaxy of restaurants that have received the Michelin guide’s highest honor, three stars, Benoît Violier’s, in Switzerland, was by one measure the most glittering.

Only two months ago his establishment, the Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville in Crissier, near Lausanne, was designated the best restaurant in the world in La Liste, rankings commissioned by the French Foreign Ministry — an honor that only added luster to the glory of French chefs (he was born in France) in the face of competition from plucky foreign rivals.

But on Monday, his friends and associates in the restaurant industry were groping to understand why Mr. Violier, at 44, had apparently shot himself to death