Making a rich text editor in a browser is an UNHOLY act.

June 22nd, 2014

Paul Ford documents his experience of using Kinja to write content:

the only button left for me to hit is the (HTML) button but god help me i'm honestly scared.

Honestly, quoting text from his post doesn't do it justice. Follow the link to get the full effect.

[Via Waxy.org: Links Miniblog]

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Who knows what evil lurks in the heart of men?

June 21st, 2014

The Shadow Paperback Book Covers by Jim Steranko:

The Shadow

Some gorgeous work here.

[Via MetaFilter]

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Eating with research

June 20th, 2014

Having been pressed by her university to complete paperwork documenting how she spends her time, Mary Beard came across this model response from an academic of a previous generation:

In my 24 hour continental timetable I divide my time each day as follows:

2 hours of pure sleep

1 hour of sleep dreaming about administration

2 hours of sleep dreaming about research

1 hour of sleep dreaming about teaching

½ hour of pure eating

1 hour of eating with research (= reading)

1 hour of eating with colleagues and of conversation on teaching and research

½ hour of pure walking

½ hour of walking with research (= thinking)

12 ½ hours of research with preparation for teaching (= reading, writing or also thinking)

1 hour of official teaching without thinking

1 hour of official administration without thinking

___

24

For ever yours

Arnaldo Momigliano

'Nuff said, I think.

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Jennifer in paradise

June 18th, 2014

Jennifer in paradise: the story of the first Photoshopped image

"It was a good image to do demos with," Knoll recalls. "It was pleasing to look at and there were a whole bunch of things you could do with that image technically." And maybe there was something in it that hinted at the kind of more perfect world that Photoshop might reveal. Knoll would leave a copy of the software in a package including the picture at the companies he'd visited. Often he'd return to find that the programmers had cloned his wife.

[Via Wis[s]e Words]

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Made It So

June 18th, 2014

You're never going to be able to unsee this:

[Via MeFi user Rock Steady, posting here]

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HelloWorld.arnoldc

June 17th, 2014

Never mind Swift, the programming language of the future is clearly ArnoldC:

ArnoldC

Programming language based on the one-liners of Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Motivation

Although the one-liners of Arnold Schwarzenegger are fairly well known the true semantics of the uttering is yet to be understood. This project tries to discover new meanings from the Arnold movies with the means of computer science.

HelloWorld.arnoldc

IT'S SHOWTIME
TALK TO THE HAND "hello world"
YOU HAVE BEEN TERMINATED

Be sure to consult the wiki for further details.

[Via Waxy.org: Links Miniblog]

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A Long Time Ago in a China Far, Far Away …

June 16th, 2014

Maggie Greene has published some scans of a 1980 Chinese adaptation of Star Wars in comic form that diverges from the original in interesting ways:

The actual lianhuanhua is a fascinating document, with weird bits sticking out here and there; but it's also a fanciful imagining (I think) of American – or generalized Western – life, especially evident in the dinner scene where a duck (?) is being stuck into a toaster oven (!) & the table has not only a little hot plate, but a crockpot (or rice cooker) there, too. The artist also makes some amusing flubs – Chewbacca appears in some scenes in a relatively credible way, in others looking like an outtake from Planet of the Apes. It also often looks like something out of a Cold War-era propaganda poster, at least where the details are concerned. Were the actors really garbed in Soviet looking space suits? Was Darth Vader really pacing before a map bearing the location of the Kennedy Space Center?

The art isn't bad at all. If I saw a copy of this with the text translated into English,1 I'd be tempted to pick this up.

Leia, captured

  1. I wonder if the words take as many liberties as the images do?

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Gardenzilla

June 13th, 2014

Talking of Kaiju, anyone for a Rampaging Kaiju Garden Gnome?

It all starts out so innocently. You might notice one or two on the ground under a rose bush or near a climbing vine, but you don't think much of it. Then one day you go outside and realize your entire garden has been overrun. What are your options? You could coat everything with some highly-toxic pesticide and hope for the best. Or you could install a Kaiju in your garden, guaranteed to get rid of those pesky gnomes. This guy spares gnone.

[Via web-goddess]

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Godzilla (2014): The Abridged Script

June 13th, 2014

Godzilla (2014): The Abridged Script is pretty funny…

FADE IN:

EXT. THE PHILIPPINES – 1999

KEN WATANABE and SALLY HAWKINS, who work for a SECRET ORGANIZATION that is so top secret they put their LOGO on their helicopters, and have a LOGO, arrive at a MINING SITE.

MINING SITE GUY

Welcome, Ken and Sally. Check out this enormous fossil we discovered! There's also a giant hole leading to a giant trench where something giant escaped and is headed towards populated areas, but fuck that.

KEN WATANABE

(stunned)

My God, it's… amazing.

SALLY HAWKINS

And look, two egg-sack things, one of which has hatched! Well, I'm sure Godzilla will be along soon to take care of it, restore balance to Nature etcetera, because that's what he does, right Ken?

KEN WATANABE

(stunned)

My God, it's… still the prologue, Sally, so not yet. […]

Be sure not to miss the caption on the still at the start of the script. Why didn't I notice that when I first saw a clip from that scene in a trailer?1

  1. Answer: I was too busy gaping at one of the first decent views we got of this version of the King of the Monsters.

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Eyes on the road

June 13th, 2014

Volkswagen's Eyes on the road public service announcement is equal parts sneaky and shocking:

I think there's a strong argument that – at least until the combined efforts of Google and Uber get us amateurs out from behind the driving wheel of our cars – all cars should be fitted with devices that block mobile phone or WiFi signals while the engine is turning over.1 Up until about fifteen or twenty years ago we all managed just fine going out into the world without being in constantly available to our friends, family, babysitter and employers, let alone our Twitter/RSS/Facebook feeds and SMS messages. I'm pretty sure we could all cope with being out of contact with the internet for a couple of hours or so.

[Via Subtraction.com]

  1. Ironically, given the video I've just linked to, I'd also be inclined to support the deployment of that sort of technology in auditoria where using your phone is pretty much guaranteed to disturb other members of the public.

1 Comment »

Anvilicious

June 11th, 2014

MeFi user zabuni neatly sums up why some of us have read enough Cory Doctorow novels to last us a lifetime, even if we broadly agree with the political points his books make about the uses and abuses of technology:

I once mocked Doctorow, and said that he wrote EFF fan fiction, he then had his main character (in the sequel to LB) meet the founders of EFF:

At Burning Man.
While playing a game of DnD with them.
DM'ed by Wil Wheaton.

I had to literally say, out loud, "For Fuck's Sake!" to that. […]

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'Relatively restrained in its depiction of attempted posthumous sexual assault'

June 10th, 2014

I know it's wrong, but somehow Chris Klimek's scathing review of The Human Race makes me more likely to stay tuned should I stumble across it on TV some day. I'm pretty sure that wasn't the plan, and the flaw is in me:

Aside from The Girl Who Did Not Have Any Tattoos That We Know Of But Who Did Beat Cancer But Then, Sadly, Stepped On The Grass, Hough invests two other characters with backstories, and still another pair with personalities, though he never dares cross those streams.

That's a relatively tame bit, but the real highlights of the review need to be read in situ to get the full effect.

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Are your retinas burning?

June 10th, 2014

How to Identify that Light in the Sky:

How to identify that Light in the Sky (excerpt)

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PaperLater

June 9th, 2014

If you think the only thing wrong with Instapaper is that you have to read the articles you've saved on a phone / tablet / computer screen, Newspaper Club have just the product for you: InstapaperOnPaper PaperLater. From their blog:

PaperLater lets you save the good stuff from around the web and enjoy it in a newspaper made just for you. When you find yourself on something you'd prefer to read in print, just press the 'Save for PaperLater' button in your browser, and we'll do the rest.

When you've got enough articles, hit print and we'll automatically layout, print and ship you a newspaper. It'll be on your doorstep in a few days.

What gets me isn't the 'read it on paper' angle; I get that a lot of people prefer to read long form pieces on paper, and I'm sure Newspaper Club do a nice job of formatting a piece from the web so that it works well in print. But I just can't get past the 'on your doorstep in a few days' thing. A few days! Are we living in the Dark Ages?

[Via @cityofsound]

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Oops!

June 8th, 2014

Cruelty to a dumb animal:

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EarthPatterns

June 8th, 2014

Lauren Manning's EarthPatterns: Beautiful things on our planet, found on Google Maps.

Castro Marim, Portugal

[Via swissmiss]

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MJT

June 3rd, 2014

This excerpt1 2 from Mike Judge's Silicon Valley is a beautiful illustration of what can happen when a bunch of geeks take an idea and run with it.

[Via More Words, Deeper Hole]

  1. Embedding not allowed, unfortunately – you'll have to follow the link to YouTube to see it.
  2. Dialogue and subject matter are probably NSFW.

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Seductively different seating

June 1st, 2014

David Owen writes for The New Yorker about the designers behind business class – or, more specifically, the designers behind the design of the seating since airlines reintroduced seats-that-doubled-as-beds in the 1990s:

"A good seat doesn't show you everything it's got in the first ten minutes," he said. "It surprises you during the flight, and lets you discover things you weren't expecting."

My favourite part of this story isn't about the amazing attention to detail that goes into the curve of a seat or the placement of a switch, or even about how saving a few centimetres per row can mean the difference between a flight breaking even and making a loss. It's the bit about how pretty much everything anyone wants to install inside an airliner's cabin has to go through a process of "delethalization", making it both marginally safer in the event that the airliner undergoes rapid deceleration and vastly more expensive than consumer-grade kit.

[Via @cityofsound]

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The Sea Witch Sets The Record Straight

May 31st, 2014

The Sea Witch Sets The Record Straight:

I didn't take her voice for myself. I want to set the record straight on that, right up front. People got a lot of crazy notions in their heads, the way the story got around, and that was one of them.

I'm not saying I never did an evil deed – anyone who says they haven't is lying through their teeth – but I didn't take her voice for myself. I didn't need it. I've got a perfectly fine voice, thank you, trained by whale divas, and it's mine. […]

[Via MetaFilter]

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Yolo Buggies

May 31st, 2014

Geoff Manaugh, on the work of 19th century surveyors in California who set out to map out the borders between counties:

Like a dust-covered Tron of the desert, surrounded by the invisible mathematics of a grid that had yet to be realized, these over-dressed gentlemen of another century helped give rise to an abstract model of the state.

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