Thursday, March 31, 2022
Various US government agencies produced a news report that simulated a terrorist attack involving nuclear weapons as part of a training exercise. We've seen enough stuff going on during news reports to know that the calm demeanor here shows a real lack of acting. You can read more about this exercise at Gizmodo. (via Pictojam)
DC Comics' March Madness Tournament: Winner Gets Published. Read a description of each of the 16 contenders in the first round at Gizmodo.
Pulp Sabotage: Making Book Covers More Fun. Just be aware that some titles are NSFW. (via Metafilter)
The Hubble Space Telescope Spots Farthest Star Ever Seen. The light that began its journey from a star 12.9 billion years ago has finally reached us. (via reddit)
Weird stuff sure happens in foreign countries… but not in Chagrin Falls, USA. The latest from Tom the Dancing Bug.
LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga Trailer.
They Missed Student Loan Payments. Years Later, They’re Stuck in Credit Hell. (via Digg)
The Perfect Getaway Car, According to a Former Jewel Thief. (via Damn Interesting)
Cats Being So Weird, You Have to Take a Picture. Some are cute as a button, some are goofy enough to make you laugh, and quite a few will make you wonder what strange set of circumstances led to this moment.
A blast from the past (2014): 10 Internet Memes Illustrated in Peeps.
Markus Johansen is Norwegian, but he is speaking English in this Audi, which is either a rental car or a demo. The car speaks English but has a definite problem with accents. The general consensus is that the car will do anything to avoid playing Nickleback.
But it makes you think: How useful is voice recognition technology globally? Besides the many different languages, there are many accents within each language even among native speakers. Add those who speak whatever language is used as a second language are often just plain out of luck. (via Daily of the Day)
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Spider-Man: No Way Home is the result of the MCU taking advantage of fan discussions about who the best Spider-Man has been so far, with the three-Spider-Man comic meme acting as the cherry on top. At least that's what this movie's producers can say. We suspect the real story is that they didn't know what to do to guarantee a hit Spider-Man movie after all the movies so far, so they threw everything that worked from the previous dozen or so films into the mix. And you know what? It worked. The movie was the biggest hit of 2021 and is still running in theaters, even though it's also available on home video. But there's still plenty of material for Screen Junkies to poke fun at for an Honest Trailer.
have you ever felt sorry for a pea? Ian Darlington of IAM Productions is just as frustrated as any other parent with children who won't eat their vegetables. He knows you can't force a kid to eat, but he hates wasting food. So he made this animation about the life cycle of peas. Watch the peas grow up in sunshine set to the tune of "Mr. Blue Sky" by the Electric Light Orchestra. Then they are rejected by a child, and suddenly the sad strains of "Mad World" by Gary Jules takes over. Darlington says that he showed this video to his daughters, and now all it takes is a couple of notes of "Mad World" to get them to gobble up their vegetables. (via Laughing Squid)
When the zombie apocalypse comes, it will be important to hide your living human smell. In The Walking Dead, people rotting flesh on their bodies to mask their scent. It only works until the rain starts. Michonne walked among zombies by surrounding herself with jawless zombies, which is not always feasible. What’s a doomsday prepper to do?
Science comes to the rescue! Chemist and zombie film buff Raychelle Burks has developed Death Scent, a cologne that mimics the smell of rotting flesh. She explains the chemistry behind this abomination in a video from the American Chemical Society. (via Daily of the Day)
Tuesday, March 29, 2022
Common logic might tell you that the easiest way to get away with a crime is to convince everyone that you are dead and cannot be prosecuted. What could possibly go wrong? If the police are after you for criminal activity, they've already figured out at least one thing you tried to pull over their eyes. Then there's the problem of being someone else, which comes with its own set of complications. (via Damn Interesting)
When you really observe them, you'll find that all house cats have hobbies. I have a cat who collects chopsticks. Batman is a munchkin cat with a serious stuffed toy obsession. But he isn't hoarding them; he takes them to his human, Christine, to show his love! That's endearing, but it's only the beginning of the qualities that make Batman an adorable cat beyond his looks.
This would drive me crazy. Every job I've had online -and I've worked online since 2006- came from someone recruiting me. That job I had in the bakery for a year, well, I just walked in and they asked when I was available to work. I don't know if I have the bandwidth left to jump through the hoops young people do these days. These pie charts are from Matt Shirley.
She Spent 50 Years with Orangutans (So Far). If you know the names Dian Fossey and Jane Goodall, you should also know Biruté Mary Galdikas.
The Novel That Foretold the Titanic Disaster.
How to Become a Fossil. (via Digg)
The Teen Who Drove Through a Tornado Got a New Truck (and a Job Offer From Whataburger) .
Watch this, and try to remember where you've seen it before. You've seen it everywhere and nowhere! This video is based on a script at McSweeney’s and could be used to advertise …anything. It’s that generic, made completely of stock footage from Dissolve. So it's just like the brand videos companies pay really big bucks to produce, but afterward, you can't even remember what it was talking about. (via Boing Boing)
Monday, March 28, 2022
Many places around the world use defunct salt mines for storage.In the UK, there's a salt mine storage facility that's being filled up as the mine continues! See, this mine is so big that underground chambers are emptied and used top store not only historical records, but actual historical items that may one day be displayed in a museum, while mining is still going on somewhat down the line, so to speak. The salt itself makes up the walls of the facility, and also cause it to have much lower humidity than above-ground storage or other kinds of underground holes. Tom Scott takes us on a tour of this underground storage facility and finds out what they'll tell us and what they won't about the treasures stored there for posterity.
The 2022 Razzie Award Winners.
Victims of Scotland's Witch Trials May Be Pardoned.
The Danger of Skyrocketing Home Prices: A Torn-up Contract. (via Fark)
Why well-qualified medical school graduates can’t get jobs — despite doctor shortages.
What Made Point d’Alençon Needle Lace So Special. (via Strange Company)
Willie Nelson and wife Annie D’Angelo-Nelson both had trouble voting in Texas' primary. There's a lot of ridiculous new voting restrictions to negotiate. (via Fark)
The Nightmarish Animatronics Behind the Movies.
Specialty Scrapyards: Where Inanimate Objects Go to Die.
Comic of the day: Perfection.
A blast from the past (2007): Extreme Sports Destinations.
You’ve seen videos of animals with their faces stuck in food cans and other containers many times. What makes this one different is how tiny this fox kit is, and how adorably cute his little face is when we finally get to see him! This was from a few years ago, and those who know say the kit’s mother came and got him not long afterward. (via Daily Picks and Flicks)
Even Ukrainian cartoons are getting in on the action pic.twitter.com/jAoyNlD8vw— Marcus Moody (@_MJMoody_) March 26, 2022
Ukrainians edited a popular Russian children's cartoon for their own purposes. A comment at Fark provides a translation from Unkrainian:
According to my wife: "I'm taking the tank, I'm taking the tank...also, also this is for me"
The ram is saying Baa and the other word in the left hand side is 'Duh'.
Sunday, March 27, 2022
Click to the right to advance the comic. I am ever thankful that my cats don't do this. Maybe it's the garden of catnip I thoughtfully planted for them. Maybe it's the fact that they are all older and at least one is missing a few teeth. This comic is from Zena Comics.
There was a time when all we knew were the nine planets (now eight) that revolve around our sun. Then we developed amazing space telescopes that can capture images outside our solar system. On March 21, the 5,000th exoplanet was confirmed. To celebrate this milestone, NASA put together a timeline on a 360° map, showing when each exoplanet was discovered.
As each exoplanet is discovered, a circle appears at its position in the sky. The size of the circle indicates the relative size of the planet's orbit and the color indicates which planet detection method was used to discover it. The music is created by playing a note for each newly discovered world. The pitch of the note indicates the relative orbital period of the planet. Planets that take a longer time to orbit their stars are heard as lower notes, while planets that orbit more quickly are heard as higher notes.
We know all about Georgia zombies. A Canadian zombie is completely different. Antoine puts maple syrup on his brains before eating them! And getting an acting job isn’t easy for him: “Less polite Canadian, more zombie!” Watch as Antoine Zombié learns to give it all for his craft. This is an ad for the 2014 Canadian Film Fest. (via Digg)
Saturday, March 26, 2022
We've seen cats sing, but they can be great instrumentalists, too. Barney likes to play piano. Brazilian musician Jeffin Rodegheri plays bass guitar. Together, they made beautiful music. The collaboration above is called "Rhapsody on a Theme of Barney." A second duet is entitled "A Cat in D Minor."
Mass production can be a beautiful thing. This video is a compilation of machines that we rarely get to see, and the amazing way they get things done. You probably won't learn a whole lot from watching this (or you just might), but how they do what they do is almost like art. None of the clips are long enough to get boring. They just move on to the next machine. (via Nag on the Lake)
Mr. Forthright shares his wisdom of the many ways you can get kicked off jury duty. In reality, just being truthful in response to every question will probably get you out of serving. You will still miss a few days of work, because the system is anything but streamlined.
I would never advise that you try to get out of jury duty. It’s part of the obligation we have for living in a democracy, after all. As a stable, upstanding citizen who votes in every election, I have been summoned quite a few times. However, I have never gotten as far as sitting on an actual court case. That one question, “Has anyone in your family ever been convicted of a crime?” gets me thrown off every time. They don’t ask how close the family member was, or what crime it was. I don’t see how they can ever seat an entire panel by being that picky. (via Tastefully Offensive)
Friday, March 25, 2022
YouTuber WUZU clay uses polymer clay to construct a Minecraft temple, set in an ocean, encased in acrylic for preservation. The process is painstaking, but engrossing, and I couldn't help but watch the whole thing. (via Boing Boing)
The Monterrey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) introduces us to Histioteuthis heteropsis, or the strawberry squid. You might notice that this animal has one huge green eye, and one small blue eye. It's not disabled; this is how they all are. They evolved two very different eyes for different uses in the "twilight zone." That's where this squid lives, and the area between shallow water that gets sunlight and the deepest depth where light doesn't reach. (via Laughing Squid)
Burkina Faso Architect Wins Pritzker Prize. See ten of Diébédo Francis Kéré's projects and read what makes them special.
The Ancient Botanical History Behind Common Aspirin.
For a year Tommy James was bigger than The Beatles. Then the mafia ruined everything. (via Damn Interesting)
A Lion And Wolf Get Carried By Crane Into A Minivan Driven By Three Brits In Order To Save Them.
Rarely-Seen Tolkien Paintings and Maps. (via Kottke)
An Exhibit of the Cars that Shaped Film History.
An Unlikely, Coincidental, and Fortunate Scrabble Game. You don't even have to be a Scrabble player to appreciate it. (via Metafilter)
Comic of the day: The small, eight-legged creature ascends the drain.
A blast from the past (2016): 6 Easter Customs From Around the World.
There’s not a lot of documentation on this experiment, but what we know is that the unknown liquid is both boiling and freezing. Actually, if you go by the visuals, it seems to rock back and forth between those states quickly. The pressure inside the glass was lowered, which causes the temperature to drop. But it also drops the boiling point of the liquid. Where the freezing point and the new, low-pressure boiling point meet is called its triple point. It’s freaky to watch. I kept waiting for the glass to break, because that just seems like what should happen. (via Viral Viral Videos)
Thursday, March 24, 2022
The TV show Bonanza ran from 1959 to 1973. Its distinctive theme song was always an instrumental on TV, but various versions with lyrics have been recorded. Before the show premiered, a version was sung by cast members Lorne Greene, Michael Landon, and Dan Blocker, but was never used for broadcast. In 1964, Lorne Green wrote his own lyrics and recorded the version above as a B-side for another song. (via Boing Boing)
Click to the right to advance the comic. We went home to work because of the pandemic, where we wore sweatpants and nibbled out of the refrigerator all day. Now spring is here, and you really want to get started on that summer beach body, because there's a possibility you might actually go to a beach for the first time since 2019. But now there's a whole new generation of exercise equipment for the home, apparatuses that are connected to the internet for maximum inspiration. Or maybe it's maximum disappointment. This comic is from Gemma Correll for The Nib.
A tornado ripped through Elgin, Texas, on Monday. The most viral of images from the storm is a video of a red Silverado pickup truck that crossed paths with the tornado. The twister flipped the truck on its side, spun it around, and then righted it. Astonishingly, the man inside was able to drive away. The owner of the truck has stayed anonymous, but we get to see what shape the truck is in.
The man obviously had his seat belt on. I wouldn't be surprised if Chevy seeks out the footage to use in an ad. (via Digg)
(via Everlasting Blort)
“Obsessed with these vibes” I say as I endlessly rewatch this video of schoolchildren cheering on a construction worker every time he shovels more dirt pic.twitter.com/GvXg5dNB2n— jonno revanche (@jonnoxrevanche) March 3, 2022
Wednesday, March 23, 2022
Gatwick Airport in London ran into an unforeseen problem that is popping up all over the world. When you shut down for a pandemic, you have no idea how long the closure will be. One or two years later, you return to find the plants dead and the refrigerator moldy because you thought you'd be back in a week or two. They shut down an entire terminal due to fewer flights and passengers, and are now working to get it back up to snuff. Tom Scott once again takes a rather mundane subject and makes it well worth three minutes of your time.
Let's be real. It's going to have to get much warmer before anyone leaves their windows open and is awakened by birds. They don't wake me even when the window is open, because I live a couple of blocks from the railroad tracks. But then again, I usually get up before the birds. This comic is from Jimmy Craig at They Can Talk.
The Academy Awards ceremony is this Sunday night, and once again there are a bunch of movies that you haven't seen up for an Oscar. In this day and age there may be a lot of movies nominated that you've never even heard of. To alleviate this problem, Screen Junkies presents their annual Oscars Honest Trailer. What that means is that this video has a mini-Honest Trailer for each of the ten films competing for the Best Picture Award. Sadly, Spider-Man is not among them.
When Sight is Taken Away for Days, Weird Things Happen. (via Damn Interesting)
My Wife Knows Everything and The Wife Doesn't Know.
Top Cities Where Recent College Graduates Want To Live, Ranked. And that's why you can't afford to live there.
Cats Can Be Assholes, Too. But they are very cute about it.
The Real Betty Crocker was a Team of "Crockettes."
Update Your Front Door for Maximum Curb Appeal.
West Side Story Star Won't Be at Oscar Ceremony. Rachel Zeglar was not invited, despite winning a Golden Globe for her role as Maria. Update: The Academy has invited her to be a presenter.
Final Fragment of a Stolen Tapestry Finally Found. After more than 40 years, the tapestry of Castrojeriz has recovered its angel.
A blast from the past (2017): 10 Competitive Eating Challenges at Restaurants in the U.S.
Tuesday, March 22, 2022
Ukrainian singer Andriy Khlyvnyuk is now suddenly a warrior. Here he performs a Ukrainian folk song with addition by The Kiffness from South Africa to make a global tune.
Andriy Khlyvnyuk, the frontman of top Ukrainian band Boombox (Бумбокс) dropped his tour of the US to defend his country. He was kind enough to let me remix this recent video of him singing a Ukranian folk song, й у лузі червона калина (Oy u luzi chervona kalyna).
The original video is here. (via Metafilter)
Come on, this idea doesn't sound any crazier than Wife Swap or Naked and Afraid. Just because a TV show is unscripted doesn't mean it's reality. It just means they aren't paying writers. Besides, this kind of thing goes on informally all over. Mom makes you go to school and then serves you pizza or chicken nuggets and mac-and-cheese for dinner because she's tired and you'll eat it. Dad buys food at McDonald's and plays video games with you because it's the weekend. There's a reason young children don't make these decisions. This comic is from Kevin McShane. (via reddit)
I assume that this guide is for people who really use social media. I use it, too, but in weird ways. Twitter is for one-liners and pet videos to post here. Instagram is for comics to post here. Facebook is for that one group I've been with for twenty years, and we're now all too old to look for another platform again. This Venn diagram is from Matt Shirley.
Most Americans are familiar with the Emergency Alert System (EAS), which used to be called the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS) before 1997. In the age of 24-hour cable and internet, you will rarely hear the weekly tests anymore unless you are up at 2AM on a Sunday, but you will probably recognize the alert tone. That's the tone that is illegal to broadcast unless you are authorized. I used to do it all the time.
Let me indulge in a personal story about the Emergency Broadcast System. I once worked at a large radio station that was an EBS relay station, meaning we were authorized to sent an alert and take over the signal of all the other stations around us in case of a nuclear attack. This was considered a real possibility during the Cold War. I received the necessary training on how to use the system, and would relay weekly tests ("This is a test. This is only a test"). Then sometime, I like to think 1991, that state decided since the Cold War was over, we would use the EBS to alert people about local emergencies. I received more training.
Meanwhile, my husband at the time worked at a competing radio station, so we never discussed radio business. He was promoted to program director. His very first day on the new job was the day I received my first real EBS emergency, just a few weeks after the criteria was changed. The alert went out with my voice saying "This is not a test." It was a severe storm warning, which I thought was silly because it was obvious by looking out the window and what can you do about it? I learned later that my husband, who had not yet been told about the change in procedure because he wasn't a part of management until that day, almost had a heart attack because the Russians were launching a nuclear attack on his first day in charge.
(via Boing Boing)
Monday, March 21, 2022
Bill McClintock's latest mashup doesn't mix disparate genres; it just works well. This three-way mashup combines Free's "All Right Now" with Van Halen's "Ain't Talkin' 'bout Love" and Quiet Riot's "Bang Your Head (Metal Health)." There's a couple of other songs mixed in here and there, too.
A baby rhinoceros named Daisy is being raised at Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary in South Africa. She was orphaned at birth, most likely due to poachers. Daisy battled a nasty infection as a newborn, but with human care, she pulled through. With no mother to teach her how to roll in the mud, her carers are giving almost two-month-old Daisy her first mud bath! Mud helps to keep a rhino's skin moisturized and protects them from sun damage, heat, and parasites. Watch her zoom around with joy when she's completely covered! (via reddit)
Henry Ford's Plant-Based Automobile.
The Oldest Mummy in the World. At least one body was deliberately dried after death inPortugal 8,000 years ago. (via Strange Company)
Isaac Newton Predicted That the World Will End in 2060. (via Damn Interesting)
A pregnant woman finds out that her child will have Down Syndrome and asked what that will be like. In response, the Italian advocacy group Coor Down (English link) gathered 15 people with Down Syndrome from various countries to answer her question. The video was produced in honor of World Down Syndrome Day on March 21st. (via Viral Viral Videos)
Sunday, March 20, 2022
Zaouli is an astonishingly difficult traditional dance in which the dancer doesn't repeat steps, and the drums follow the dancer. Notice that the dancer's top half is static, while his bottom half is moving furiously, creating the effect of floating in the air. The Côte d’Ivoire tradition is not as old as you might think, having been codified in the 1950s. The dance incorporates older traditions into one performance.
Zaouli dancers are men, but wear a mask of a beautiful woman. Seven types of masks are used, each representing a different legend. Zaouli was added to the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2017. (via Twisted Sifter)