Friday, August 23, 2019

The Missing Link That Wasn’t

For a long time, scientists looked for the "missing link" that would prove that humans evolved from apes. This missing link would be a midpoint between ape and human. But there's no "midpoint" because that's not how evolution works. We can't even come to an agreement about what "human" really means on the evolutionary scale. The story Piltdown man is only one chapter in the long story of how scientists unfolded the evolutionary history of humans.

Tweet of the Day

This spider apparently likes what he sees, and goes immediately into a mating dance! (via Everlasting Blort)

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Perpetual Motion

Filmmaker Nick Cobby and musician Max Cooper made a music video about how people are constantly moving in pursuit of something or other. You can read the artists' statements about the project at the vimeo page. The video is made from artistically enhanced drone footage taken above Mexico City. At first, I thought the artistic enhancements included the pink cars, because I could not believe any place has that many pink cars. Then I looked it up, and taxis in Mexico have been pink since 2014! Anyhow, the video is mesmerizing. (via Laughing Squid)

Free Samples

Book Store

(via reddit)

Classical Music Mashup III

Grant Woolard gave us Classical Music Mashup and Classical Music Mashup II. Now we have a third iteration on the theme, where he seamlessly overlays and meshes different classical tunes. This video contains snippets of 70 pieces from familiar composers like Beethoven and Chopin, branching out to Prokofiev, Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky, and more, including outliers like Scott Joplin and Rick Astley. (Thanks, Grant!)  

Hunting Trophies

A little twist ending in this story! It doesn't matter where they come from, I find dead animals displayed in the house really creepy. This comic is from Alex Culang and Raynato Castro at Buttersafe.


(via Buzzfeed)

"Kitten" (1968)

This is Russian computer animation from 1968. Boing Boing gives us a short translated explanation.
More than 40 years ago in 1968 ... A team led by Nikolai Nikolaevich Konstantinov creates a mathematical model of the motion of the animal (cat). The BESM-4 machine, executing a written program for solving ordinary (in the mathematical sense of the word) differential equations, draws a cartoon "Kitty" containing even by modern standards an amazing animation of cat movements created by a computer.
There's more here, in Russian.

New Bed

(via Fark)


Ella Fitzgerald, performing in Berlin in 1968.

Tweet of the Day

(via Buzzfeed)

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

THX's New Deep Note Trailer

THX has a brand-new "Deep Note" trailer to be shown in theaters that are THX-certified. You won't get the full effect watching it on a small device, or even a home TV set, but the animation and sound are still impressive. If you aren't all that sure what THX means, Gizmodo fills us in.
Originally developed back in 1983 by Lucasfilm’s Tomlinson Holman as a way to ensure that the sound for Star Wars: Return of the Jedi would be accurately reproduced in theaters, THX is a quality control and certification system that takes into account everything from a cinema’s acoustic performance to the screen and projector’s image quality to even the amount of background noise heard inside the theater. Most audiences probably couldn’t hear the difference between a THX-approved theater and one that wasn’t, but what made THX popular among many movie fans was the iconic Deep Note glissando that played ahead of the film, which had originally been created by Lucasfilm’s James A. Moorer.
Few theaters today are up to THX standards, but if you see this trailer on the big screen, you know you've found one.


(via reddit)

Why Women Shave Their Legs

In this skit from Adam Turns Everything, Adam is being overdramatic, so it's a relief when he hands the subject over to Emily.  As to the reason woman began shaving their bodies, it all comes down to profit. Are you surprised? (via Digg)

It's Not Me, It's the Algorithm

The most welcome use of artificial intelligence is the ability to blame it for all sorts of horrible things. Or at least until the algorithm develops the capacity to resent that. This comic is from Zach Weinersmith at Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal.


How Flat Can a Cat Get?

Maru is a large cat. His roommate Hana is also getting to be pretty substantial. Their human, mugumogu, arranged an experiment to see how small a passageway can get before the cats cannot get through. The opening is lowered gradually until we have to laugh at Maru's struggle to fit under eight centimeters. How low can they go? Watch and see- it will remind you of a limbo competition! One thing we can be sure of- they had some kind of powerful incentive to get through. Maybe it's the challenge itself. 

Miss Cellania's Links

Very Good Dogs Attend a Theater Performance.

The Root covered the arrival of the first slave trading ship in America, as it happened on August 20, 1619.

Sexism in the Academy. Women face as many obstacles to tenure, if not more, than they ever have. (via Metafilter)

38 Americanisms the British Can’t Bloody Stand. (via Nag on the Lake)

A Brief History of Vanity License Plates Gone Wrong.

That Time Rock Hudson Staked his Talent on a Bleak Sci-fi Movie. Seems like Seconds would be worth a watch.

Not Your Grandma’s Cuckoo: Decapitating, Rat-Eating Clocks of the Black Forest. (Thanks, WTM!)

Henrietta Wood Sued for Reparations in 1870. Strangely, Wood's lawsuit was not a groundbreaking case that opened the floodgates for other former slaves to sue, and has almost disappeared from postwar history.

Woman Wins Ultramarathon, Gets Two Trophies. (via Boing Boing)

A blast from the past (2012): 7 Fabulously Named Fossils.


(via Fark)