Monday, November 30, 2020
Dan Bull and Divide Music collaborated for this tongue-twisting tribute to The Mandalorian. Yes, it's a rap, but it retains the Western feel of the series. Good thing it has subtitles, because it moves pretty fast! (via Geeks Are Sexy)
Have you ever seen inside a pregnant elephant? Asha is a third of the way through her pregnancy, that's eight months of 22, so the calf isn't due until 2022! Veterinarians at the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Gardens took a look with an ultrasound and saw the head, trunk, and legs as the little fellow seems to have plenty of room to move around. Read more about Asha and the zoo's other Asian elephants at Bored Panda.
DoodleChaos programmed three falling balls to play Bach's Prelude in C Major as they bounce down an incline. You will be hypnotized.
I coded a simulation in Unity which generates bouncy blocks to represent piano notes at the correct position so the physics can make music. It was a fun project to make sure that all the constraints I wanted were met. There is a lot of room to improve it, my approach ended up being a pretty brute force search for the best bounce trajectory based on the future camera position. I also included penalties for crossing the path of another ball because they could get bunched up and not find any valid moves.Yeah, yeah, that's all very interesting; just watch the result.
Meet the Nazi ‘Indiana Jones’ Behind the Third Reich’s Hunt for the Holy Grail. (via Strange Company)
Shane Mitchell tells us about sugarcane: its history, how it's harvested and processed, the state of the industry, and its legacy. (via Metafilter)
The Promise That Tested My Parents Until the End. A heartbreaking story of a 50-year marriage.
Iceland brought huge scientific heft to its attempts to contain and study the coronavirus. Here’s what it learnt. (via Digg)
Rebecca Solnit: On Not Meeting Nazis Halfway. (via Kottke)
Charles Crocker’s Spite Fence.
Melissa Trierweiler illustrates funny stories about Disney Princesses with dolls at her site The Official Princess Club. See a roundup of 30 representative episodes from over the years at Bored Panda.
The most stressed out I've ever been about Christmas... (via the Daily Dot)
Just republished: 10 Famous Birthdays to Celebrate in December.
It certainly appears that this springy cat jumps when he hears the "boing" sound in the Mario game. However, when you realize this video is from master sound editor Ignoramusky, you realize that the sound effects were added later. Works perfectly! (via Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly)
So sad to hear David Prowse has passed. He was a kind man & much more than Darth Vader. Actor-Husband-Father-Member of the Order of the British Empire-3 time British Weightlifting Champion & Safety Icon the Green Cross Code Man. He loved his fans as much as they loved him. #RIP pic.twitter.com/VbDrGu6iBz— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) November 29, 2020
Sunday, November 29, 2020
DJ Cummerbund did a mashup of "I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor and "Jump" by Van Halen (with a few other songs thrown in), a couple tunes you'd never think to put together, but it works in some strange way. (via Metafilter)
There have been several parodies of Billy Joel's "We Didn't Start the Fire"over the course of this year, each one becoming obsolete in a hurry as more outrageous stuff happens. This one came in October, so it doesn't cover the post-election meltdown, but with years of scandals gushing like a firehose, it has plenty. The singer is Jen Houston.
Maru and Hana have a new kitten! Miri the young calico was rescued from a roadside gutter (what we would call a ditch) and brought to mugumogu for adoption. Miri is settling in just fine, and will soon find out what it's like to go from the gutter to internet stardom.
In Miri's first video, she starts out shy and reticent, then eats, and finally becomes comfortable enough to chase her own tail and play with her new mama's finger. Maru, now 13 years old, is as inscrutable as ever when meeting the new family member, but he does have something to say about her. It isn't long before Maru begins to teach Miri the ins and outs of their perfect cat-centric home, as you see in the above video. (via Metafilter)
(via Everlasting Blort)
If you reckon you’re too busy these days (or not busy enough), check out these items from Leonardo da Vinci’s rather challenging “to-do” lists, as recorded in his notebooks ~ thx https://t.co/OYVrl8Ly5H pic.twitter.com/8abqnBCj6W— Journal of Art in Society (@artinsociety) November 22, 2020
Saturday, November 28, 2020
It wasn't just the Greeks; everywhere we look there are ancient writings that mention all kinds of colors, but not blue. Figuring out why takes us on a journey through time and culture and the relationship between language and observation. (via The Mary Sue)
Mister Rogers had Margaret Hamilton on his show to help children deal with scary characters. In case you didn't know, she played the Wicked Witch of the West in the movie The Wizard of Oz. This is as cute as can be. (via reddit)
Maybe we should give up this life of crime and go roller skating! The ad for Roller Kingdom in Reno, Nevada was produced by Rhett & Link. Oh yeah, the kidnapper became the owner of the rink, the gang leader became the skate instructor, and the drug dealer is now the rink DJ. All's well that ends well! (via b3ta)
Friday, November 27, 2020
The song is called Prisencolinensinainciusol, written by Italian artist Adriano Celentano in 1972. Recorded by Celentano and Claudia Mori in an American accent, it sounds like it should be English, but the lyrics are pure gibberish. The accompaniment is by Celentano’s wife Claudia Mori, although actress Raffaella Carrà lip-syncs it in the video. Celentano said,
"Ever since I started singing, I was very influenced by American music and everything Americans did. So at a certain point, because I like American slang — which, for a singer, is much easier to sing than Italian — I thought that I would write a song which would only have as its theme the inability to communicate. And to do this, I had to write a song where the lyrics didn't mean anything."
This video caused a sensation when I posted it in October of 2009; too bad all the links to it were borked when I moved from Squarespace to Blogger. (Squarespace export files do not translate to Blogger, so I have tons of material that may never get back on my site.) In 2012, Adriano Celentano released a much longer remix of the song and video for a new audience. You can see that one here. The song contains a lot of filler, but you get to see the extended beginning skit as it was shown on TV.
Okay, it's been six years since the last time I posted this, so I think it's okay to listen to the song again.
Glamour magazine recorded Dolly Parton watching and reacting to YouTube covers of her songs. She is a delight. There's also the artists' reactions to Dolly's reactions. Watch all this happiness will have to make you smile. (via Metafilter) https://www.metafilter.com/189529/I-love-it-when-people-sing-my-songs
19. Drop Zone Portable Service Inc., Frankfort, Ill.
18. Blackman's Best Seat In The House Inc., Bradley, Ill.
17. Plop Jon Inc., Port Saint Lucie, Fla.
16. A.S.A.P. Port-A-Pots Inc., Hampstead, Md.
15. Ameri-Can Engineering, Argos, Ind.
14. Bobby’s Pottys, White Marsh, Md.
13. Johnny On The Spot Inc., Old Bridge, N.J.
12. LepreCAN Portable Restrooms, Chicago
11. Loader-Up, Inc., Sarasota, Fla.
10. Mister Bob’s Portable Toilets, Vero Beach, Fla.
9. Royal Throne, Allentown, PA
8. Tanks Alot, Tomball, Tex.
7. Tee Pee Inc., Roseville, Mich.
6. Wizards of Ooze Ltd., Anacortes, Wash.
5. Oui Oui Enterprises Ltd., Chicago
4. Gotta Go Potties, Stroudsburg, Pa.
3. UrinBiz.com, Chicago (apparently changed their name or went out of business)
2. Willy Make It? Oregon City, Oregon
1. Doodie Calls, New Orleans
Just to make sure, I looked all of these up for your convenience. Kirby Barlett-Sloan also submitted Tardis Portable Toilets. And D. Webb told us about Nix Tank Company, which has the slogan "A royal flush beats a full house!"
One Of America's Most Nightmarish Monsters Was A Nice Old Lady. Read the story of Georgia Tann and her long reign of terror at Cracked.
My kitten Charlie loves the laundry hamper. He’ll meow and whine until you put upside down so he can become a kitty Roomba.
Trump's attempted coup plays out, in Chagrin Falls, USA. The latest fromTom the Dancing Bug.
A History of Felines, as Narrated and Illustrated by a Cat. Baba not only channels fascinating cats in history, but models costumes of their era.
During the late night recording session for "We Are The World," a spontaneous but appropriate tribute to Harry Belafonte broke out.
Culled mink rise from the dead to Denmark's horror. Somewhere, someone just got five in a row on their 2020 bingo card. (via Boing Boing)
New Chemistry and the Birth of Public Hygiene. What better way to clean up pollution than to flood it with acid vapors? (via Damn Interesting)
David's father is a fan of the movie The Terminator, but David isn't allowed to watch it, because it might scare him. In this webcomic story from Doogie Horner, David finally sees the movie. (via Metafilter)
A blast from the past (2015): These 9 NASA Posters Give Astronauts the Celebrity Treatment.
Thursday, November 26, 2020
Most folks (outside of Switzerland) say that Bern is the capital of Switzerland. But it's not, really, it's just the place where federal offices are, because they have to go somewhere. Switzerland actually has no capital city, and that's okay, as there's no global rule that nations must have one. This video is only five minutes long; the rest is an ad. (via Laughing Squid)
I actually watched a Hallmark Christmas movie for the first time, this past Halloween, with my mother. We both endured the whole thing, thinking maybe the other was enjoying it, but afterward we both admitted that it awful. I now feel as if I've seen them all. So here, in four minutes, you can see what they are all about, and the caliber of acting is every bit as good as any made-for-TV Christmas movie. Now you'll never have to sit through a whole one.
Working on this video was a true joy. I've been playing video games since the mid 80's when I first got a hold of an Atari. Since then, they have been a part of many cherished memories with friends as well as solo adventures. When we were talking about the making of this video, I asked jeremy if we should make up our own games or straight up feature the ones we grew up with. We decided to just go for it and each made lists of some of our favorites. This proved to be a very difficult curation, as my intention was not just to show a random selection of games, but to also choose moments within those games that had a particular significance to us while also going hand in hand with the song. I hope you all enjoy!
The Saga of Gerald, the Turkey From Hell, Who Nearly Destroyed Oakland.
Fine Feathered Fiends: 6 Bizarre Turkey Attacks. Not counting Gerald.
Recounting your blessings: a roundup of editorial cartoons for the holiday.
Their Loved Ones Died Of COVID. The Holidays This Year Will Be Completely Different.
Mandalorian "Jeans Guy" Goes Viral.
This cat took the whole "nine lives" thing to heart apparently.
Hunting Season at the Nursing Home. You can see more pictures here. (via reddit)
The Inside Of This New Jersey Mansion Is An Unexpected Santa's Workshop On Steroids.
My Hunt for the Original McDonald’s French-Fry Recipe. Plus a history of their fries and a cooking lesson.
A blast from the past (2015): 9 Breathtaking German Castles.
Ask young children about Thanksgiving, and they will tell you what they know -which isn't much. And what they know can be hilariously fused with non-Thanksgiving stuff. Just picture the Pilgrims in a cave wearing loincloths eating pickles and salami for Thanksgiving. These kids are good at bluffing their way through, which will serve them well in the higher grades -and in their careers. (via Uproxx)
I haven’t been doing much of anything lately but I did string together a bunch of clips where Bernie Sanders thanks musicians because him saying Soccer Mommy in his New York accent is never not funny to me. pic.twitter.com/qfzttprHEg— Andy Nguyen (@Andy_Truc) November 18, 2020
Wednesday, November 25, 2020
Writer and comedian Keaton Patti wrote a Batman script as if it were rendered by a neural network. While this is just plain bizarre, no bot could be this funny. This reaction video contains plenty of contagious laughter. See the animated version, too. (via reddit)
(via Everlasting Blort)
They penned this as the #YouCanBeABCs with Sam.— Robert C Stern (@RobertCStern) October 27, 2020
This is the ABC's we should be teaching our youth.#keepdreaming #kids #education #success #goals #tuesdaythoughts #tuesdaymotivation pic.twitter.com/NrnBWchWMk
Tuesday, November 24, 2020
Fifty-four years before Marilyn Monroe starred in The Seven Year Itch, the same scene of a white dress being blown by an updraft from a sidewalk vent was shown to theater patrons. The 1901 movie was called What Happened on Twenty-third Street, New York City, and it was all of 77 seconds long. The film was presented as a slice of life, but it was scripted, and starred Florence Georgie and A.C. Abadie. The surviving film was in pretty bad condition. This copy has been restored and modernized by artificial intelligence.
1. Removed noise artifacts and stabilized original print.
2. Increased frame interpolation from 15 fps to 60 fps, using AI neural networks.
3. Increased to 4K resolution using AI upscaling.
4. Added color using Deoldify, a deep learning AI process.
Oh yeah, they added a bit of sound, too. The result is altogether charming. (via Nag on the Lake)
"IT HAS LONG BEEN KNOWN"... I didn't look up the original reference.
"A DEFINITE TREND IS EVIDENT"... These data are practically meaningless.
"WHILE IT HAS NOT BEEN POSSIBLE TO PROVIDE DEFINITE ANSWERS TO THE QUESTIONS"... An unsuccessful experiment, but I still hope to get it published.
"THREE OF THE SAMPLES WERE CHOSEN FOR DETAILED STUDY"... The other results didn't make any sense.
"TYPICAL RESULTS ARE SHOWN"... This is the prettiest graph.
"THESE RESULTS WILL BE IN A SUBSEQUENT REPORT"... I might get around to this sometime, if pushed/funded.
"IN MY EXPERIENCE"... Once
"IN CASE AFTER CASE"... Twice
"IN A SERIES OF CASES"... Thrice
"IT IS BELIEVED THAT"... I think
"IT IS GENERALLY BELIEVED THAT"... A couple of others think so, too.
"CORRECT WITHIN AN ORDER OF MAGNITUDE"... Wrong.
"ACCORD1NG TO STATISTICAL ANALYSIS"... Rumor has it.
"A STATISTICALLY-ORIENTED PROJECTION OF THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THESE FINDINGS"... A wild guess.
"A CAREFUL ANALYSIS OF OBTAINABLE DATA"... Three pages of notes were obliterated when I knocked over a glass of Mountain Dew.
"IT IS CLEAR THAT MUCH ADDITIONAL WORK WILL BE REQUIRED BEFORE A COMPLETE UNDERSTANDING OF THIS PHENOMENON OCCURS"... I don't understand it
"AFTER ADDITIONAL STUDY BY MY COLLEAGUES"... They don't understand it either.
"THANKS ARE DUE TO JOE BLOTZ FOR ASSISTANCE WITH THE EXPERIMENT AND TO CINDY ADAMS FOR VALUABLE DISCUSSIONS"... Mr. Blotz did the work and Ms. Adams explained to me what it meant.
"A HIGHLY SIGNIFICANT AREA FOR EXPLORATORY STUDY"... A totally useless topic selected by my committee.
"IT IS HOPED THAT THIS STUDY WILL STIMULATE FURTHER INVESTIGATION IN THIS FIELD"... I quit.
How to Not Screw Up Thanksgiving, According to a Bunch of Moms.
He was Meant to Be Bigger than Bowie. Instead he's the biggest glam rock star you've never heard of.
Watch the 1959 movie Teenagers From Outer Space, colorized by artificial intelligence. (via Boing Boing)
Meet Olivia! The COVID-19-Era American Girl Doll. (via Nag on the Lake)
The Founders didn't prepare for a president who refuses to step down, historians say. But they did discuss it.
The dark art of playing world-class Scrabble. Here's a non-paywalled link. (Thanks, WTM!)
Biden is stealing the spotlight. Trump can't stand it.
A blast from the past (2011): Out of the Ordinary Thanksgivings.
Monday, November 23, 2020
It's a fact of modern life that when you set yourself up like this, someone will have some fun with it. (via Fark)
Wait for it.— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) November 23, 2020
can’t. stop. laughing...🤣😭🤣 pic.twitter.com/z11PiTIewa
Click to the right to advance the comic. This reminds me of better days when the library was open every day, or at all. Not that I would borrow many books these days, as I have so little free time I can't even keep my house clean, but I depended on the local library for printer access. This comic is from mindblowoncomics. (via Geeks Are Sexy)
This is kinda cute. They asked 100 children who the most famous person in the world is. First, they had to come to grips with what the word "famous" means. Of course, some have a tenuous grasp of the words "is" and "person" as well. Then you get a taste of what kind of pop culture kids of different ages are getting into these days. (via Tastefully Offensive)
What Trump Showed Us About America. Here’s what 35 thinkers say it revealed—not about the man, but about the rest of us.
Animal Shelter Styles Older Dogs as Senior Citizens for an Adoption Photoshoot. They are all good dogs. (via Nag on the Lake)
Which Animals Are Going Extinct? Meet 32 of the most critically endangered. (via Digg)
Internet Memes In Japanese Print Style.
Where Was the Birthplace of Modern Humans? The evidence points to confusion. (via Strange Company)
How Sarah Josepha Hale Became the 'Mother of Thanksgiving.'
17 Movies Stars Who Were Drunk Or Stoned While Filming Classic Scenes. You might end up seeing your favorite film in a whole new way.
How Male Widow Spiders Avoid Being Cannibalized During Sex. It may strike you as a bit kinky, but it's still a survival tactic. (via Boing Boing)
AOC castigates McConnell for sending the Senate home for the holidays. Although the chamber is empty, maybe some Georgia voters will see the YouTube video.
A blast from the past (2010): The Not-So-Ancient History of 10 Thanksgiving Dishes.
Sunday, November 22, 2020
Every baby needs a good hug! These kids clamor rather politely to get a quick hug from their favorite keeper. Me! Me next! Every goat gets a hug eventually. I hope the little alpaca did, too. (via Laughing Squid)
Saturday, November 21, 2020
You may remember the Discovery Channel's very popular jingle I Love the World. Randall Munroe of xkcd was inspired and did his own version featuring memes from his webcomic. Then Elaine Doyle and Olga Nunes produced a video that recreates xkcd's comic using the original tune, featuring a cast of prominent and not-so-prominent bloggers.
Neil Gaiman, Wil Wheaton, Cory Doctorow, Lawrence Lessig, Bruce Schneier, Jason Kottke, Google Zurich, Hank Green, MC Frontalot, Patrick & Teresa Nielsen Hayden, Mr. Toast, Miss Cellania, Team Genius, Phil Plait, Allan Amato, Maddy Gaiman, Charissa Gilreath, Belinda Casas, Chuck Martinez, Jeremy James, Joanna Gaunder, Lee Israel & Octavio Coleman Esq. of The Jejune Institute
I am honored to be in such august company. You'll find a complete listing of who's who line by line at Olga's site.
Reposted from February of 2010 just because I wanted to.