Brain Food

East of the Sun and West of the Moon

Wikipedia: “East of the Sun and West of the Moon” is a Norwegian folk tale. The White Bear approaches a poor peasant and asks if he will give him his youngest daughter; in return, he will make the man rich. The girl is reluctant, so the peasant asks the bear to return, and persuades her

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Powerful Essay on the World Trade Center Attacks

By Steve Kandell on Buzzfeed [The Worst Day Of My Life Is Now New York’s Hottest Tourist Attraction]: The fact that everyone else here has VIP status grimly similar to mine is the lone saving grace; the prospect of experiencing this stroll down waking nightmare lane with tuned-out schoolkids or spectacle-seekers would be too much.

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The Art Assignment #3: Intimate, Indispensable GIF

In which The Art Assignment visits New York-based artist Toyin Odutola and receives the challenge to create a GIF! But not just any GIF–it must articulate something intimate that is indispensable to you. My Entry: My (current) favorite words EPISODE 03 INSTRUCTIONS: 1. Think of something intimate that is indispensable to you. (It doesn’t have

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Conceit via. Wikipedia

via Wikipedia, Conceit: In literature, a conceit is an extended metaphor with a complex logic that governs a poetic passage or entire poem. By juxtaposing, usurping and manipulating images and ideas in surprising ways, a conceit invites the reader into a more sophisticated understanding of an object of comparison. Extended conceits in English are part

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Estoppel – Wikipedia

From Wikipedia: Estoppel. Estoppel in its broadest sense is a legal term referring to a series of legal and equitable doctrines that preclude “a person from denying or asserting anything to the contrary of that which has, in contemplation of law, been established as the truth, either by the acts of judicial or legislative officers,

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‘Azimuth’ via Wikipedia

via: Azimuth – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. An azimuth i/ˈæzɪməθ/; from Arabic السمت as‑samt, meaning “a way, a part, or quarter” is an angular measurement in a spherical coordinate system. The vector from an observer origin to a point of interest is projected perpendicularly onto a reference plane; the angle between the projected vector and

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Life Cycles of Online Social Networks

The “funny but true” ones The one that started it all: The life of a Usenet newsgroup The Natural Life Cycle of Mailing Lists The Life Cycle of Online Discussions And the boring serious analysis Four Stages of Social Movements The Lifecycle of Groups

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Gen Con Writer’s Symposium 2013, Saturday in Review

WKS1345346 (Fiction Fundamentals Part 3: Putting on the Polish on Sat at 08:00 AM – 3 hours) Lawrence Connolly, William Horner III “In-depth workshop: learn how to make your story sing through application of effective revision and editing techniques.” I was really sorry to miss this workshop because the other two these guys did on

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Gen Con Writer’s Symposium 2013, Thursday and Friday in Review

Thursday WKS1345344 (Fiction Fundamentals Part 1: Plotting and Planning on Thu at 08:00 AM – 3 hours) Lawrence Connolly, William Horner III “In-depth workshop: learn how to avoid extra work by planning your story and all of its elements from the beginning.” This was easily the most useful of the day’s programs to me, although

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On Giving Credit to Feminist Writers

Sady Doyle writes “For the Record” on sadybusiness: …and I’m mad at the trend of anonymizing and erasing women who do feminist work, attributing every single fucking idea and cultural gain to vaguely defined “feminists” rather than the actual people who sat down, wrote the pieces, made deadline, and endured harassment over it, only to

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Cat Tower Brainstorming

Some ideas I have for a project I’d like to do – a cat tower piece of furniture for the cats to have someplace to sit. The first was an idea I got from a cartoon. The other idea I’ve been knocking around is a combo clock/cat bed tower. Not sure whether to combine these

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How Movies Teach Manhood: Colin Stokes

More about this TED Talk: When Colin Stokes’ 3-year-old son caught a glimpse of Star Wars, he was instantly obsessed. But what messages did he absorb from the sci-fi classic? Stokes asks for more movies that send positive messages to boys: that cooperation is heroic, and respecting women is as manly as defeating the villain.

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‘The Wild Hunt’ via wikipedia

via Wikipedia, the Wild Hunt: The Wild Hunt is an ancient folk myth prevalent across Northern, Western and Central Europe. The fundamental premise in all instances is the same: a phantasmal, spectral group of huntsmen with the accoutrements of hunting, with horses and hounds in mad pursuit across the skies or along the ground, or

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‘Beasts of battle’ via Wikipedia

Via wikipedia: Beasts of battle: The Beasts of battle is a poetic trope in Old English and Old Norse literature. It consists of the wolf, the raven, and the eagle, traditional animals accompanying the warriors to feast on the bodies of the slain. It occurs in eight Old English poems and in the Old Norse

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Oceanographer Edith Widder: How we found the giant squid

Oceanographer Dr. Edith Widder talks about how she invented the camera rig designed to attract and film the giant squid recently filmed and shown in the Discover documentary. Dr. Widder is the president, senior scientist and CEO of the Ocean Research and Conservation Association. And she is a total bad ass. A really cool example

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Awesome fan-made Wonder Woman video

She actually fights Nazis in this video, which is supposed to be her thing, unlike today where she’s just fighting greek mythology or some such. And her boots are really cool. Female Super Hero Fan Film from Jesse V. Johnson on Vimeo.

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Gender Through Comic Books Online Course

Very cool news from comic writer Mark Waid: For the last few months, a talented university teacher named Christy Blanch has been putting together a college-level course called “Gender Through Comic Books”–but it’s not limited to college students. It’s the world’s first comics-related Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)–meaning that it will be FREELY AVAILABLE to

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For Good – Kristen Chenoweth and Anna Kendrick

Posting in case Stephanie hasn’t seen this awesomesauce yet… Kristen Chenoweth and Anna Kendrick singing “for Good” at the Trevor Projects‘ Trevor Live benefit. Not only is the song really good, the reactions of the women filming the song are pretty adorable, too. (Stephanie has a crush on Anna Kendrick. Kirsten Chenoweth is on my

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Evolutionary Psychology and its Top Ten Failures

This is worth reading… Via Dr. Beetle: Evolutionary Psychology and its Top Ten Failures. The dreadful pseudo science of evolutionary psychology is founded upon concepts such as survival of the fittest, selfish genes, inherited instincts and mind modules. It has shot to prominence in science and societies’ thinking, and found many a willing ear.

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Wheaton’s Law

Wheaton’s Law via Know Your Meme. Wheaton’s law is, of course, “Don’t be a dick.” I had never seen the Know Your Meme website before; it’s a nice idea, run by the Cheezburger folks.

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Random Cool: Horse Fight

I have a folder on my hard drive titled “random cool” that contains images I’ve collected over the years that don’t seem to lend themselves to obvious categorization. Occasionally I’ll flip through it if I want to decoupage something, or if I want design ideas, but mostly I keep it to entertain myself. Today I

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Dostoevsky on the Problem of Evil

Dostoevsky on the Problem of Evil. … And if the sufferings of children go to swell the sum of sufferings which was necessary to pay for truth, then I protest that the truth is not worth such a price. I don’t want the mother to embrace the oppressor who threw her son to the dogs!

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Guinness World Record for largest kinetic tension experiment

Indianapolis teens Andre Jefferson and Miles Parnell set a world record Saturday, March 24, for the largest stick bomb, which is a mechanical spring-loaded device constructed out of flat sticks woven together under tension. A stick bomb works similarly to a line of dominoes; setting off the kinetic tension of the woven sticks causes them

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How to Commit to a Goal

How to Commit to a Goal via How to Commit to a Goal — PsyBlog. The key, according to PsyBlog, is not to simply fantasize about how much better it will be when you achieve your goal, or to wallow in how unhappy you are now, but to contrast those two with each other each

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Window Watchers in a City of Strangers

Window Watchers in a City of Strangers – NYTimes.com. The ability to observe the private lives of strangers from the windows of our homes — and the knowledge that they can often watch us, as well — has long been a staple of city life, one that was immortalized in Alfred Hitchcock’s 1954 film “Rear

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Brainstorming and Groupthink

From the New Yorker – Groupthink: The brainstorming myth, by Jonah Lehrer In the late nineteen-forties, Alex Osborn, a partner in the advertising agency B.B.D.O., decided to write a book in which he shared his creative secrets…. His book “Your Creative Power” was published in 1948. An amalgam of pop science and business anecdote, it

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Apps I may need someday

Business Model Toolbox The Business Model Toolbox combines the speed of a napkin sketch with the smarts of a spreadsheet. It enables you to map, test, and iterate your business ideas – fast. With the Business Model Toolbox you will be able to: – Sketch your business model using the practical methodology from the best-selling

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‘The Ancient of Days’, ‘Thumos’ via wikipedia

via wikipedia: The Ancient of Days The title “Ancient of Days” has been used as a source of inspiration in art and music, denoting the Creator’s aspects of eternity combined with perfection. William Blake’s watercolour and relief etching entitled “The Ancient of Days” is one such example. The Ancient of Days is the title of

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Maddow’s “make your own verb suffix contest”

I’m not sure I can even adequately paraphrase the point of this contest, so let me take advantage of their paraphrasing: “The short version is that an Amazonian tribe uses verb suffixes as a means of indicating the source of their information. Your challenge is to come up with verb suffixes for English to make

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A Kite That Couldn’t Be Tied Down

This is beautiful: I swooned at the thought of her reading something undoubtedly wonderful in the adjoining compartment but forced myself to nod. We looked out the window: a herd of camels, for a flash of a second. We were in the Gobi Desert. Nights were hard. She was inevitably inches away, sleeping peacefully as

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I totally thought of it myself, I swear

Things you may hear me say soon: “There are chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters…” 4 person douche canoe Sites I may link to from time to time: http://getyourownmotherfuckingblogasshole.wordpress.com/ Let Me Google That For You

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Comments Elsewhere

Jonah Lehrer, the author of Proust Was A Neuroscientist (which I have) and the new book How We Decide (on my wishlist) has an interesting article on the Frontal Cortex science blog regarding Costco and how it affects our decision-making regarding pricing. To which I contributed this in the comments: You should study my wife

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Homespun: Modern Handmade

I’ve mentioned INDIEana Handicraft Exchange here before; Stephanie and I were introduce to the contemporary craft fair by a friend and have attended their events twice. It’s helped inspire the two of us to plan and scheme about our own crafting projects and what we might be able to do someday as a potential vendor.

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links for 2010-02-21

It’s Not Your Money | Ian Welsh Most people get this, but libertarians seem to have a hard time with it – "It seems like every time I discuss taxation, some libertarian will waltz in and say 'it’s my money and I don’t see why the government should be able to take it.' So let’s

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links for 2010-02-12

List of cognitive biases – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (tags: science lifehacks psychology logic) May Wright Sewall – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Indianapolis' resident suffragette and feminist. (tags: feminism suffrage voting women) National American Woman Suffrage Association – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia If you look at the section "background conflict" there are some really interesting

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links for 2010-01-27

8 guides to apply jQuery and ImageSwitch in web design | HieuUK (tags: flipclock) Indianapolis, New Orleans mayors place Super Bowl wagers | IndyStar.com | The Indianapolis Star Yeah, we're going them shrimp from St. Elmo's. Yes, you read that right; we sending SHRIMP south, to NEW ORLEANS. Which is probably where we flew it

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Knitting and Design and Flow

It struck me on the way in to work this morning that the reason I love knitting so much is because it’s design in almost pure form. With web design, there are so many hurdles you have to jump through to get your design into a working state – css attributes to learn, scripting languages

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What motivates me

I’m not motivated by a bunch of platitudes about “finding the edge” and “exploiting your potential.” I’m not motivated by people who engage in competitive behavior with people they should be collaborating with. I’m not motivated by people who rest on their laurels and do the bare minimum to get by, or people who spend

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New Urbanism – Study at home

Cordelia at the Phenomenal Field proposes a home study course in New Urbanism, based on recommended reading over at the Where blog. I’ll sign up for this home study course – this has been a subject burgeoning at the base of my brain for awhile. I’ve had Jane Jacob’s book (The Death and Life of

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Ruining It for the Rest of Us

I only follow a couple of podcasts regularly because my drive to work is relatively short, and I otherwise can’t keep up. But I happened to read about one particular episode of This American Life – entitled Ruining It for the Rest of Us – on a blog somewhere, and was interested enough to loop

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Dooce’s Hypothetical Question

A few days ago, Heather Armstrong posed a question on her blog: Indulge me for a second and consider this scenario: let’s say you’re given the opportunity to donate some money to a desperate family who would use it to feed their children, but were only able to do so if you donated the same

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The Power of Day Dreaming

The most common criticism I received when I was a kid was that I daydreamed too much, especially in class. Even though my classwork was high quality, staring off into space would set my teachers off all the time, and it was one of the things I was always very upset about, because it never

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Cool Artist – Little Robot

I happened to be looking on etsy.com for a daniel striped tiger hand puppet (don’t ask – I’ll get around to explaining it later) and stumbled on this really marvelous artist’s store – Little Robot – AKA Lindsey Carr. I have to count my pennies before I buy any prints with the wedding coming up,

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links for 2008-04-09

Twitterholics Tons of applications that have been built using Twitter as a base. (tags: twitter software ideas reference) FTD – Frontotemporal Dementia – Brain Disease – Pick’s Disease – Creativity – New York Times A Disease That Allowed Torrents of Creativity (tags: brain health disease ideas thought)

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Dear VW: This is not a fucking microbus

How many times to I need to repeat it, before you dudes figure it out? I want a hybrid fucking Microbus. This new van (Routan? WTF) is ugly as hell. Nevertheless, it’s actually in production and will be coming out, although it’s butt ugly. Build a damn BUS. A hybrid friggin’ BUS. Build THIS: As

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spaceup! blue Volkswagen Bus

Volkswagen of America unveils a new concept cart – a “green” fuel-cell microbus-like vehicle called “spaceup! blue.” First – they had me at “hybrid microbus.” Seriously, that’s all it takes. Please make one. Please. I will give you my first-born. If you love me, go to the VW website contact page and tell them to

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Solar-Diesel Hybrid VW Microbus – concept car

I ran across a video on the Verdier Bus on YouTube, and had to google to find out more about what it is. Turns out it’s a concept car – a design firm put it together and it won a Special Prize from the Jury at the Caravaning Design Award 2006/2007. The Website for the

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My New Favorite Batman Movie

I’d give you an overview of this fan-produced marvel, but it would be better to just read the recap that this guy wrote. Let me point out one thing he didn’t though – Robin is wearing green rubber cleaning gloves. And then there’s the sequel: I love the interweb.

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The Landlord

I’ve been telling Stephanie that she needs to be a hardass as a landlord. Here’s a video where she can get some pointers on how to do it. UPDATE: Linked instead of embedded because the auto-play was annoying.

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Hate my site?

[link deprecated – http://www.netdisaster.com/go.php?mode=creampie&url=http://www.commonplacebook.com/] Splatter it with cream pies. [link deprecated – http://www.netdisaster.com/go.php?mode=dino&sound=on&url=http://www.commonplacebook.com/] Make dinosaurs tromp on it. [link deprecated – http://www.netdisaster.com/go.php?mode=dog&url=http://www.commonplacebook.com/] Let dogs poop on it. Or just [link deprecated – http://www.netdisaster.com/go.php?mode=flowers&url=http://www.commonplacebook.com/] let a bunch of hippie flowers grow on it.

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Free Trip to Europe

Stephanie’s dad called her today to tell her that he won a free trip to Europe from some contest on PBS – one that he apparently entered with the intention of giving to us if he won. So I guess we’re going to Europe? Wow. She going to find out some more details.

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The Ladybug Picnic

Awesome – Shakespeare’s Sister posted YouTube clip of Sesame Street’s Ladybug Picnic, and I had to grab it because it’s one of Stephanie’s and my songs. She put together a great CD for me of all kinds of Sesame Street songs, including some like that this that I hadn’t heard since I was a little

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Hey, that’s my name!

I was perusing a 37 signals blog post from last week on some changes they made to backpack, and noticed in some of the screenshots, the designer Ryan Singer used my name in the mock-up of his new sharing information object. Hee! Apparently, I’m sharing some documents with some folks.

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International Talk Like a Pirate Day!

Aye, it be International Talk Like a Pirate Day, me hearties! Don’t be a land lubber, learn t’ talk like a pirate yerself! Here’s a list o’ stuff pirates say, Or try t’ English t’ Pirate Translator! Arrr! Being a Pirate by Hogeye Naavy from the album: Poor Old Horse

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Video of some of the figure skating from GGVII

Jay and Bradley did an interpretive pairs program of Brokeback Mountain that was really amazing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvGVQZQBwzs Edward Van Campen did a very moving tribute to his brother, who died of AIDS. His performance included his brother’s AIDS quilt, which he then presented to the NAMES Project. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3xlkr-JoRc We discussed creating video of Stephanie’s programs, but

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Two Gold Medals

Stephanie won two gold medals in the past two days, at both her competitions. She skated really well – she looks really confident and smooth on the ice. I’m so proud of her. The skating is really amazing. I have tons of photos, but we’re still unable to connect my laptop to the weak signal

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Gay Games, Opening Ceremonies

Stephanie can get on her Dad’s neighbor’s wireless network, but I can’t get on, so I can’t yet upload the bajillion pictures we’ve been taking. We bought a new camera for me — the Canon SD630 I’ve had my eye on for a while, and Stephanie’s adopted my slick little Canon SD10 Powershot, which she

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Gay Games 2006

We’re headed up to Chicago for the Gay Games this week. Stephanie’s skating in two competitions as part of Team Indiana, so we’ll be there all week. (IIf you can’t be an athlete, be an athletic supporter!) We’re staying with Stephanie’s Dad (and taking Spike!) so our internet connections will be sporatic, but we’ll try

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Out of Context Landmarks

Worth 1,000’s recent photoshop contest asked competitors to take key landmarks and relocated them. Some of them work well (Lincoln rowing a boat) and other’s don’t seem to quite get the concept. Back in 1997 when I visited Germany to see my friend Cate, one the castles we visited was Burg Vichering, a small 16th

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The Moustache Tattoo

This is just hilarious — people in Federal Hill, Rhode Island have started trend — a tattoo of a moustache, that you get on your finger, so that when you hold your finger up to your upper lip, you appear to have a moustache. Check out the video where they interview the tattoo artist who

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Grass Armchair

A DIY Kit for growing a grass armchair in your yard. I really would love to try that. It’s a British website though, so I suspect the shipping would be cost prohibitive. So my sister should get it, and make the chair, and then invite me over to sit in it.

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Buy Your Own Tank on Amazon.com

Yep, the Badonkadonk Tank is a real, purchasable Item on Amazon.com. I’ve linked to it with my Amazon Associates ID, so if you decide to buy one, I’ll get a referral fee. Please, please by one. I’m kidding, of course, but do read the reviews on their page, because they are hysterical.

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Texas A&M Hoopsters Total Eclipse of the Heart

Hat tip to Advance Indiana for this one… Texas A&M basketball players get together and lip sync to Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Heart. Shirtless, with killer abs, and complete choreography. Considering the sheer volume of crappy imitation lip syncing videos out there on google video and youtube, (all of which came about after

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Fun RSS Thing to Do

If you read your news in an RSS reader, here’s something fun and informative that you can do… Go to Google News, and to a search on the term “gay.” Look in the left column of the page and grab either the RSS link or Atom link, and add it to your news reader. Then

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Mini-Derby Cars

My dad made me three of these kick-ass cool cars when I was in elementary school, as part of the YMCA Indian Princesses Mini Derby race. They’re carved out of a block of wood and then painted. The idea was to race them down a track, and prizes would be awarded for the winners, and

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Iraqi Invasion: A Text Misadventure

Defective Yeti writes a hilarious text adventure game similar to the classic Zork, only you’re George Bush. Naturally, you’re pretty stupid. Iraqi Invasion: A Text Misadventure Revision 88 / Serial number 54892 Oval Office You are standing inside a White House, having just been elected to the presidency of the United States. You knew Scalia

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Public Games and “Design Your Own” Games

This improv group gathered a bunch of people, had them stand in the windows of a large commercial building and do a dance routine to entertain people in the park below. Then there’s the Zombie Village Playtest, created by Avant Games. And 20 Exquisite Rules, also by Avant Games.

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The Edge Annual Question — 2006

WHAT IS YOUR DANGEROUS IDEA? The history of science is replete with discoveries that were considered socially, morally, or emotionally dangerous in their time; the Copernican and Darwinian revolutions are the most obvious. What is your dangerous idea? An idea you think about (not necessarily one you originated) that is dangerous not because it is

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Gourmet Amigurumi

I’ve mentioned before Gourmet Amigurumi, the business run by Beth Doherty that makes great crochet animal dolls. I had Beth make this figure skating monkey for Christmas for Stephanie… along with a monkey for me, too. If you look at Beth’s Flickr photos of her work, she’s got some really amazing dolls. She just recently

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Weird text at the bottom of a spam email

A spam message I received this morning had this text at the bottom. I wonder where it came from? I’m guessing from the stuff I’ve seen in the past that they grab text from a website somewhere and insert it into their spam. Exactly! roared Sykes. And do you believe Johnny St. Jay would willingly

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Goth Embroidery (and pirates, and monkeys!)

Sublime Stitching‘s site says, “This ain’t you gramma’s embroidery!” And they’re quite right. With patterns for everything from tikis, sushi bars, goth patterns, mexican wrestlers, pirates and monkeys, they make a really boring craft into something fun and hip. Well, okay, about as hip as embroidery can get, anyway.

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MIT Study: Tinfoil hats don’t work

According to a study by MIT students, tinfoil hats actually enhance (rather than scramble) invasive radio signals. Darn, I guess I’ll have to start making tinfoil origami animals with all that extra Reynolds Wrap I have laying around.

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Flickr: What is it?

Telstar posts a photo of some electronic gadget purchased at a flea Market, and asks “What is it?” Madness ensues. I actually have a what is it pic I need to post on Flickr sometime, when we get back from New York. If I remember to.

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Indoor home composting machine

I ran across this product on a design site I read regularly, because it get’s good reviews for usability. It’s a compost machine that you keep in the kitchen next to your trashcan. Since Stephanie and I have been dating, I’ve moved toward recycling almost everything: aluminum cans go to a scrap metal place where

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Biomimicry, the law of unintended consequences, Chinese water torture

Via wikipedia: Biomimicry Biomimicry or biomimetics is the examination of nature, its models, systems, processes, and elements to emulate or take inspiration from in order to solve human problems. The term biomimicry and biomimetics come from the Greek words bios, meaning life, and mimesis, meaning to imitate. Similar terms include bionics. Law of unintended consequences

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Gourmet Amigurumi – amazing crochet animals

I stumbled across Beth Doherty’s amazing crochet creations on Flickr and from there discovered that she sells these adorable creations at an online shopping service called “Etsy” that works very similarly to eBay, only for handmade creations. Very cool animals, and the shop is a very cool idea, too.

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How to tie popular knots

A scouting troop reference guide to tying “popular” knots. I guess the unpopular knots don’t get asked to prom. Stephanie and I were trying to tie down stuff to my truck the other day, and I was very frustrated because I couldn’t figure out how my dad ties knots; he has some sort of slipknot

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PledgeBank

PledgeBank is a site where you can sign up to pledge to do something — but only if other people will do it. You can either make your own pledge, or find a pledge that someone else has proposed and add yourself to their list, thust providing support for each other.

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Lori points out the best car magnet ever!

Courtesy of my friend Lori, a pointer to the best car magnet ever on northern sun’s site… the “support our pants” magnet. I currently have two magnets on my car — a rainbow one, which I bought, and a Women’s heart health one I got free from Clarian for spending $43,000 of my insurance company’s

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Propaganda Posters – Remixed

Worth1000.com put together a great photoshopping contest of old WWII propaganda posters. Along the same lines, only with a political purpose, The Propaganda Remix Project has numerous reworked posters, including some for sale. Seems like I’ve seen another link like this someplace, but I don’t seem to have it bookmarked. UPDATE: I found the link;

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Ten Stupidest Utopias

From Strange Horizons. yep, stupid is a good assessment. I know I shouldn’t say this out loud, but I will: you could add several of the all-female, feminist dystopias from popular lesbian sci-fi novels into the list of “stupidest,” like Daughters of a Coral Dawn, and the one I read recently, Ammonite. As annoying as

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The Long Tail

[Navigated to by way of Steven Johnson’s Blog. Johnson is the author of Everything Bad Is Good for You: How Today’s Popular Culture Is Actually Making Us Smarter which I read recently.] Quoting from Wikipedia: The phrase The Long Tail, as a proper noun, was first coined by Chris Anderson. Beginning in a series of

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Instant labeling tape

Hannes Koch created this cool labeling tape, where you simply black out some lines with a black marker to create the words you want. Fun. I love labels. They are fun. This makes me want to go home and play with my label maker.

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Public Space Games: Ministry of Reshelving

I’m a bit behind on reading Boing Boing, so I’m just now perusing Wednesday’s post about a new city-wide game: the Ministry of Reshelving, by Avant Game, a woman’s personal blog where she discusses some of the public games she’s created and participated in. Basically, following certain rules, you go to a bookstore and take

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Kinetic Sculptures from Old Junk

I’ve posted several of these links before, but I wanted to aggregate them all in the same spot because they’re interesting. They’re all sculptures made of found objects. We were talking about this in Louisville this past weekend, because I was brainstorming some things I’d like to make, and there were a couple artists in

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Interesting Advertising

This should interest my friend Doug: newspaper readers in the UK are currently being treated to a truly great series of print ads. The Stella Artois adverts place objects that may be familiar to you from various movies into a single landscape, and the challenge is to figure out what movies all the images are

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Kentucky Art Car Weekend/Chicago Trip

Stephanie and I are going down to Louisville, Kentucky, again this weekend, this time to meet her friend Lisa from North Carolina, who is road-tripping up for the Kentucky Art Car Weekend. Lisa is coming up in a caravan with her friend Sarah, who has an art car in the art car show. Lisa will

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‘Cultural Generations’ via wikipedia

via wikipedia, Cultural generations , i.e., “Baby Boomer” and “Generation X.” Generation X: Generation X, commonly abbreviated to Gen X, is the generation born after the Western Post–World War II baby boom. Demographers, historians and commentators use beginning birth dates from the early 1960s to the early 1980s. The term was popularized by Douglas Coupland’s

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Make your own wind turbine

An article on how to create your own wind turbine — two years ago, I was searching the web to find plans to make one of these. I don’t know why; I just though it would be a cool thing to learn about. Don’t know that I’d ever actually attempt to make one myself.

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blog for city-wide games

I’m going to have to look at this site in more detail later — it’s a site based in New York City that holds city-wide games, such as capture the flag, and man hunt. Sounds like fun. I know there’s a site like it in San Francisco, because Ernie from Little Yellow Different particpated at

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Haunted Paper Toys

Really cool site that lets you download word files and use them to print out foldable gothic toys, like killer robots and haunted mansions. The site’s kinda slow, though, because it’s been mentioned on some big sites and thus is getting lots of traffic.

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This is just too cool….

Unusual Cards — collage cards by Francesca Berrini are greeting cards made of old retro images combined together, like old school books with kids playing combined with dinosaur illustrations, or old pictures of 60’s casseroles overlayed on landscapes as “giant food.”

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Hanzi Smatter

My friend Lori’s site pointed me in the direction of this: Hanzi Smatter is a site that looks at Chinese or Japanese language characters that Americans have adopted as logos or tattoos and analyzes what they really mean. Which is often not at all what the American intended it to mean. Sort of their revenge

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Roomba

Stephanie bought a Roomba vacuum cleaner this weekend at Target, for half price. It was originally $150, marked down to $75. She needed a vacuum cleaner, and I was looking for a dust buster in the same aisle, so she picked it up. We were busy yesterday, so she didn’t have a chance to set

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Crazy Cat Lady Action Figure

The company that makes all sorts of cool weird action figures has come out with a new one: Crazy Cat Lady, the lady with lots of kitties. Ohh, cool. This site also has a monkey that does somersaults.

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Menorahs and clocks made out of crazy old junk

I’ve posted several things recently about cool stuff made out of old junk, and here’s another… Roger Wood at Klockwerks has expanded from making super-cool clocks to making super-cool menorahs out of old stuff. I LOVE stuff like this. I have several old parts of stuff that I bought at the salvage yard with this

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Pixar’s cool workspaces

Ain’t it cool news writes about a visit to Pixar studios, and publishes some kick-ass photos of the work spaces of Pixar animators. Instead of cubicles, they have little cottages, with doors, windows and addresses. Walking through the space is “like walking through a neighborhood for dwarves.”

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I so want to do this

These guys took photos of themselves, blew them up to poster size, and then took them to a baseball game to wave at the TV. That’s just too fun. Unfortunately, I’d be unhappy with all the pictures I took of myself, and would never get to the posterizing stage. 🙂 Except maybe this picture. I

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‘Doctor Who’ via wikipedia

Wikipedia article on Dr. Who. I understood very little about the program, other than I caught a few episodes on cable when I was a kid in the 1980s, and had a crush on Sarah Jane Smith. An article like this would have been very helpful when I was young. It has since become one

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Trivial Pursuit: Book Lover’s Edition

The Book Lover’s Edition is played very similarly to the regular editions of Trivial Pursuit; the goal is to collect pieces of pie representing different categories of questions, and then to land directly on the center of the board to answer a final question in the category chosen for you by your opponents. Unlike other

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Winchester Mystery House: Where I want to live when I grow up

“In 1884, a wealthy widow named Sarah L. Winchester began a construction project of such magnitude that it was to occupy the lives of carpenters and craftsmen until her death thirty-eight years later. The Victorian mansion, designed and built by the Winchester Rifle heiress, is filled with so many unexplained oddities, that it has come

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map of Springfield

One of my co-workers printed this Map of the Simpson’s Springfield to the plotter and has a large poster of it. Unfortunately, I don’t have print drivers to the plotter. Damn it.

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treppenwitz

Treppenwitz, AKA “L’esprit de l’escalier” Literally, ‘the wisdom of the stairs’. The striking reply that crosses one’s mind belatedly when already leaving, on the stairs. People are often angry because they did not have the fitting answer directly during a conversation. The term is old, but it was made popular by W. Lewis Hertslet who

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The Laws of Physics Don’t Apply to Me

College Application essay by Hugh Gallagher, author of Teeth: 3A. ESSAY: IN ORDER FOR THE ADMISSIONS STAFF OF OUR COLLEGE TO GET TO KNOW YOU, THE APPLICANT, BETTER, WE ASK THAT YOU ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTION: ARE THERE ANY SIGNIFICANT EXPERIENCES YOU HAVE HAD, OR ACCOMPLISHMENTS YOU HAVE REALIZED, THAT HAVE HELPED TO DEFINE YOU

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Iron Law of the Universe

Keynes�s remark that �The market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent� is paralleled by (ahem) Teresa Nielsen Hayden�s observation that �The Invisible Hand is not to human scale.� Also, Hofstadter�s Rule, which states that everything takes longer than you think it will, even after you take Hofstadter�s Rule into account.

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Baby Jeebus Face Painted Black

Someone who took a baby Jesus figurine from a church’s outdoor Nativity scene painted its skin black and then brought it back. The figurine was accompanied with a note that said the darker paint more accurately represents his skin color. “I thought I would point out that Jesus was not an Aryan but actually a

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“Mary Sue” in Online Fan Fiction

MARY SUE (n.): 1. A variety of story, first identified in the fan fiction community, but quickly recognized as occurring elsewhere, in which normal story values are grossly subordinated to inadequately transformed personal wish-fulfillment fantasies, often involving heroic or romantic interactions with the cast of characters of some popular entertainment. 2. A distinctive type of

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The Golden Days of Usenet: Godwin’s Law

Godwin’s Law: prov. [Usenet] “As a Usenet argument grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.” There is a tradition in many groups that, once this occurs, that thread is over, and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever argument was in progress. Godwin’s Law thus practically guarantees the

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COOL: GPS Tags for your dog, kid or elderly parent

Mr. Wozniak described WozNet as a simple and inexpensive wireless network that uses radio signals and global positioning satellite data to keep track of a cluster of inexpensive tags within a one- or two-mile radius of each base station. WozNet, he said, will include a home-base station that has the ability to track the location

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Samuel Pepys’ Weblog (Diary)

Samuel Pepys was an English gentleman who lived in the mid 1600’s, whose well-known and beloved diary serves as an excellent history of his era. Pepys was a practical man of business but also had a wide-ranging appetite for knowledge. His classical and mathematical education was the basis from which he explored the arts and

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Flash Mobs

“You are invited to take part in MOB, the project that creates an inexplicable mob of people in New York City for ten minutes or less. Please forward this to other people you know who might like to join.” Hmmm. Sounds fun. New Mutual Friends project? I’ll have to e-mail Lori.

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Mutual Friends Scavenger Hunt 2003

We wrapped up the hunt on Sunday, with the Mojo team winning with a whopping 1006 points, having answered an amazing number of the questions on the list. They kicked ASS. I’ll post the list of questions soon, as well as some more stats on how the team did, and pictures.

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Mildred’s House of Signage

Tracy Jo Seneca has been roaming the streets of Chicago with a camera in search of interesting, unusual and strange signs. My favorite so far: The Mexican Pagoda Sign. Kind of reminds me of a restaurant here in Indianapolis called the “Oriental Smorgasbord.” Also, Rosario’s Italian Sausage, where the pigs just happily jump into the

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Paper Airplanes

Okay, we just had a paper airplane flying contest at work… from the third floor balcony down into the lobby, with the object to hit the center pole on the revolving doors, a distance of about 60 feet. AND I WON. Me! I won! All the guys were busy aerodynamically designing their planes and test

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Wabi Sabi

I’ve written about it here before, but here are a few links about wabi Sabi: http://phpwiki.sourceforge.net/phpwiki/WabiSabi http://www.stonebridge.com/wabisabi.html And a couple of books available: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0879058498/ http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1586850105/

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Lost U.S. city found as lake dries up

“Lost U.S. city found as lake dries up” All I can say is… cool. There’s apparently an old town under Geist Reservoir here in Indianapolis, too. On one of the online map companies, if you search for Geist, they still have a label for Germantown appearing in the center of the lake. I’ll endeavor to

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schadenfreude

It took them an entire study to realize that schadenfreude (glee at the misfortune of others) happens when people resent those who have privileges without working for or deserving them, and those privileged people suddenly fall from grace. I would have thought that was self-evident. I have to take issue with one paragraph that’s totally

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1000 Blank White Cards

1000 Blank White Cards, a game that’s making the rounds of weblogs lately. Basically, you use blank index cards and draw the rules of the game as you go along, awarding points for certain things. Here’sanother explanation of the games rules (or lack thereof). Also, a slide-deck from the creator of the game on Philosophy

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Popular Baby Names – Social Security Administration

I saw this link (Popular Baby Names) once, a few years ago, and have been trying to remember where it was located ever since. Turns out it was the Social Security Administration, not the U.S. Census Bureau. It’s come up in discussions a number of times, and I kept saying “there’s this link…” Well, here

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In a Snob-Free Zone

In a Snob-Free Zone, By Joseph Epstein My cousin Sherwin’s way into the snob-free zone was simple enough: Care only about one’s work, judge people only by their skill at their own work, and permit nothing else outside one’s work to signify in any serious way. View the rest of the world as a more

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Outsider Videos

This is really cool — the best of underground “outsider” video. Orson Welles drunk. Anna Nicole Smith stoned. A wierd movie pitch. Part of a cult recruitment video. Just watch.

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My junior high tennis shoes

Hey, look! It’s the tennis shoes that got my ass kicked in junior high school. Some genius has scanned the 1980 JC Penney catalog and put it online for you to peruse. I wonder if they also have the “Chic” jeans my mom made me wear; the ones that got me beat up in the

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Otto’s Lighthouse

I visited the Pilsum Lighthouse (AKA Otto’s Lighthouse in 1997 when I visited my friend Cate. According to Wikipedia: The Pilsum Lighthouse (German: Pilsumer Leuchtturm) was built in 1891 in order to provide a beacon for the Emshörn channel on Germany’s North Sea coast. It is located on a dyke near the village of Pilsum

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Wabi Sabi

Japanese Aesthetic principle: Wabi-sabi is a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete. It is the beauty of things modest and humble. It is the beauty of things unconventional. Material characteristics of wabi-sabi: suggestion of natural process, irregular, intimate, unpretentious, earthy,simple. From UTNE Reader: According to Japanese legend, in the sixteenth century Sen no Rikyu

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Garrison Kellior: A true friend

Garrison Kellior: A true friend is someone you could call up and say, “I’m a wreck and I’m coming over and staying with you for a couple days.” Or you could say, “I’m sorry to call you at 3 a.m. but I’m sitting in a truck stop confused and missing my pants and need you

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My Birthday

Dan and Doug took me out to dinner, and gave me North By Northwest and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, and My sister gave me a fondue pot, ice crusher, and goth chick Barbie. So my birthday turned out pretty damned cool. Fake book on Amazon: American Foreign Policy by G. W. Bush Fake reviewers on

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‘Cambrian Explosion’

Remember when you were a kid, and all of the sudden, for no apparent reason, you shot up several inches one summer? Like growth wasn’t a slow, glacial process but an abrupt one? Sort of like some of the theories on evolution that suggest mutations aren’t as gradual as we think. (A Cambrian Explosion, per

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