Day: July 21, 2016

Fox News chief Roger Ailes resigns after sexual harassment claims, Murdoch takes over

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20th Century Fox put out a brief today that Roger Ailes has resigned as CEO of Fox News Channel. Ailes departs the conservative television news empire after multiple women accused him of sexual assault.

Twenty-First Century Fox chairman Rupert Murdoch will take over as chairman and acting CEO of Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network until a suitably demonic, bulldog-jowled elderly white male replacement can be found.

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Make Better Iced Coffee with Coffee Ice Cubes

Coffee Ice Cubes

Want iced coffee that stays strong to the very last sip? Then say hello to coffee ice cubes.

I am the tortoise, not the hare, when it comes to coffee. I sip slowly, but I always finish my cup – even when that means grimacing on the last diluted, watery dregs at the bottom of my iced coffee.

No more! Now that coffee ice cubes are in permanent residence in my freezer, my days of sad iced coffee are over.

Continue reading “Make Better Iced Coffee with Coffee Ice Cubes” »

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What does a car crash-proof human look like? Odd. Very odd.

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Melbourne, Australia’s Transport Accident Commission commissioned an artist, trauma surgeon, and road safety engineer to imagine and design a human built to survive car wrecks. The result is Graham, seen above. From Road & Track:

“The truth is, our cars have evolved a lot faster than we have,” says David Logan, a team member on the project and road safety engineer at the Monash University’s accident research center. “Our bodies are just not equipped to handle the forces in common crash scenarios.”

To deal with these forces, the team came up with Graham. Protecting his brain is a much larger skull intended to absorb forces and fracture upon impact. His face, concave and fatty, is less likely to be damaged. Instead of a silly wobbly neck, he doesn’t really have one at all, reducing the potential for spine and back injuries. His skin is also thicker to prevent lacerations, and his ribs have a layer of external air sacks for maximum protection

Videos:

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Advances in transparent, brain-revealing skull-windows

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Researchers at UC Riverside and Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada have published a paper describing their ongoing success in setting a “transparent nanocrystalline yttria-stabilized-zirconia” into patients’ skulls, which reveal the patients’ brains so that the patients’ brains can be zapped with therapeutic lasers.
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What is going on in this video of a Russian freeway incident?

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I watched this bizarre video a couple of times and couldn’t figure out what’s going on. I think Folderpirate on Reddit has the best theory:

The guy on the bike was in on it. It was a carjacking/kidnapping targeting the first car.

  1. Guy on bike stops traffic by trying to cross in front of mark.
  2. Mark stops. Argument ensues as cyclist smacks car/yells/is obnoxious/wont move out of way.
  3. Mark gets out of car while it’s running.
  4. Two kidnapper cars come up, grab the mark and his passenger, and steal their car.

Also, the guy filming is in on it as well. He’s filming this to mail it to whomever they are going to try and get money from.

There seems to be a bit more going on. Are the guys in white caps bodyguards? The car that stopped for the bike looks expensive, so maybe it belongs to an oligarch’s kid who has two white-capped face-pushing goons to clear the way for him? Whatever happened, it was well planned and smoothly executed, like a scene from a thriller.

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Boars, Gore, and Swords podcast continues the A Song of Ice and Fire book club

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The Boars, Gore, and Swords book club forges on with the Boiled Leather chapter order combining George R.R. Martin’s A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons. In this week’s “Ghost of Sand Snakes Yet to Come,” Ivan and Red cover the chapters “The Prophet” and “The Captain of the Guards.” They discuss the religious importance of drowning, weapon-based objectophilia, and which European landmarks found their way to Dorne.

To catch up on previous television seasons, the A Song of Ice And Fire books, and other TV and movies, check out the BGaS archive. You can find them on Twitter @boarsgoreswords, like their Facebook fanpage, and email them. If you want access to extra episodes and content, you can donate to the Patreon.

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Wherever you are on the the having guts scale, you can level up with Gutsy Girl

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See sample pages from this book at Wink.

The Gutsy Girl: Escapades for Your Life of Epic Adventure

by Caroline Paul

Bloomsbury USA

2016, 160 pages, 6.4 x 8.6 x 0.7 inches

$12 Buy a copy on Amazon

If ever there was a book I wished was around when I was little, it’s The Gutsy Girl. But I’m just as glad to have it in the world now. While I would have read it to pieces as a kid, it also gave grown-up me a powerful reminder: bravery and resilience are skills. Anyone can develop them.

The Gutsy Girl comprises author Caroline Paul’s stories of her own (mis)adventures, accompanied by short bios and quotes from other inspiring ladies, and helpful how-tos (make a compass outside, find the North Star, recognize animal tracks, etc.). All together, the book is everything it promises to be: escapades for your life of epic adventures.

Throughout the book, Paul models adventure through her own life, from racing a boat she made of milk cartons down a river as a young girl, to white-water rafting and working as a firefighter as an adult. And she shares what she’s learned along the way. While the lessons — about planning, communication, teamwork, knowing your limits and when to push them – and when not to — are valuable, I think the bigger idea is that all of her failures and triumphs are part of a learning process. With each new experience, Paul tests, hones, and ultimately grows her own bravery and resilience.

This idea is also sweetly captured by the book’s illustrator Wendy MacNaughton in a drawing titled “The Gutsy-O-Meter.” Readers are asked to rate themselves on a meter that swings from low guts (watching TV and sleeping) to high guts (sleeping to scaling ice cliffs.) If you’re at six (sleeping outside), the book encourages you to try seven (navigating through woods by compass). If you’re already a 10 — watch out world!

– Sara Distin at Tiny Bop

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The story of Donald Crowhurst, who tried to fake sailing around the world in 1968.

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In 1968 British engineer Donald Crowhurst entered a round-the-world yacht race, hoping to use the prize money to save his failing electronics business. Woefully unprepared and falling behind, he resorted to falsifying a journey around the world. In this week’s episode of the Futility Closet podcast we’ll describe the desperate measures that Crowhurst turned to as events spiraled out of his control.

We’ll also get some updates on Japanese fire balloons and puzzle over a computer that turns on the radio.

Show notes

Please support us on Patreon!

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Belushi, Bette and Beverly Hills

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This week on HOME: Stories From L.A.: The process by which one place stops being home and another starts — it’s a mysterious thing. It happens, most often, when we’re not paying attention. And sometimes, as it did for comedy writer and transplanted East Coaster Janis Hirsch, it happens in stages. First she started to feel at home in Los Angeles; but it was only later, after a series of addresses and a run-in or two with Bette Davis, that she landed in the exact place that would be, finally, her home.

HOME is a member of the Boing Boing Podcast Network.

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Become a game development rockstar with this Unity 3D training - now under $20

It’s no secret that technology is changing the way we all work—but it’s also transforming the way we play. The games of today look nothing like those of 10 or even 20 years ago: these days it’s all about mobile and 3D.

And now you can learn to design 3D mobile games with the Intro to Unity 3D Game Development Bundle. With 7 courses including over 267 lessons, this package of lessons includes all you need to know to create a 3D mobile shooter game, even if you have zero coding experience.

That’s because Unity has the tools you need to handle design, pixel art, and everything in between. Plus, you’ll even learn how to publish apps and games to the Apple App Store and Google Play.

If you’re ready to get started learning how to create unique games that have the potential to be the next big thing in gaming, you’re in luck. Right now, the Unity 3D Game Development Bundle is going for just $19.99 (92% off the regular price of $265).

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Recessed LED light kit

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For some reason, when we moved into our house, many of the trims for the recessed lighting were missing. At $14, they are pretty expensive for what you get – a ring of plastic and a disc of frosted glass. Recently I discovered these recessed LED light kits, which include LED lights built into trims. You get 4 for $40 (I’ve seen them as low as $30 for 4), making them cheaper than the trims!

They are dimmable, they don’t buzz, and were super easy to install. I love them and I’m going to replace every recessed light in the house with them.

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This month, Japan will manufacture its last VHS video cassette recorder

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Funai Electric Company, maker of VHS video cassette recorders for its brands like Magnavox, Emerson, and Sanyo, has announced that they will stop production on new VHS video cassette records this month.

According to the newspaper Nikkei, it’s difficult to source the parts and, surprise, sales of new units have continued to plummet.

Expect a VHS-only store to appear in a hipster neighborhood near you soon. Y’now, the image just looks… warmer.

(Anime News Network)

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Crowdfunding a second anthology of great UK sf magazine Holdfast

Sybil_cbwd32

Laurel writes, “Holdfast is an award-winning free online speculative fiction magazine that celebrates all things fantastic. We are trying to raise enough money to pay our writers and artists for their valuable work and also print a beautiful paperback. After a successful campaign for anthology #1 and winning the British Fantasy Society award for best magazine 2015 – we’re hoping to create an even bigger and better anthology this time.”
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See this fellow test a 20,000 watt light bulb

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Most of the lightbulbs in your home are probably equivalent to 60 to 100 watts and emit around 800 to 1600 lumens. Above, “electrical overload” fan Photonicinduction fires up a 20,000 watt halogen bulb in a small lab space. Such bulbs are most frequently used on massive film sets. As the gent says, “Mmmm… that is a light bulb.” If we had one in our home, my family would still forget to turn it off before leaving the house.

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Video of one year on Earth, from one million miles away

One million miles from Earth, hanging in space between Earth’s gravitational pull and the sun’s, is the DSCOVR satellite and NASA’s incredible EPIC camera. Every two hours, EPIC takes a photo of Earth “to monitor ozone and aerosol levels in Earth’s atmosphere, cloud height, vegetation properties and the ultraviolet reflectivity of Earth.” The above video combines one year of those images.

From the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center:

The primary objective of DSCOVR, a partnership between NASA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Air Force, is to maintain the nation’s real-time solar wind monitoring capabilities, which are critical to the accuracy and lead time of space weather alerts and forecasts from NOAA.

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EFF is suing the US government to invalidate the DMCA's DRM provisions

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The Electronic Frontier Foundation has just filed a lawsuit that challenges the Constitutionality of Section 1201 of the DMCA, the “Digital Rights Management” provision of the law, a notoriously overbroad law that bans activities that bypass or weaken copyright access-control systems, including reconfiguring software-enabled devices (making sure your IoT light-socket will accept third-party lightbulbs; tapping into diagnostic info in your car or tractor to allow an independent party to repair it) and reporting security vulnerabilities in these devices.
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Survey: Republicans don't like Game of Thrones

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Research firm E-Score asked Democrats and Republicans about their favorite shows. Game of Thrones was #1 in the Democrat list, but it didn’t appear in the top 10 on the Republican list.

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Ethnically Diverse

On the Democrats’ list, 3 of the top 10 shows: The Haves and the Have Nots on OWN, How to Get Away with Murder on ABC, and Empire on FOX all have a racially diverse cast and have powerful lead roles for women. This reflects the Democratic viewer who is also typically more diverse, with higher concentration of black and female supporters.

Good vs. Evil

Republicans enjoy clearer “good vs. evil” characters and storylines compared to the Democrats’ favorites. Republicans prefer shows featuring superheroes like The Flash, Arrow and the super intelligent team on Scorpion. Two procedural programs such as NCIS and Blue Bloods also have the “good vs. evil” component, as well as skewing slightly older than some other programs in the list.

If you want to watch a show with a member of the opposing party, watch The Walking Dead. Everyone likes The Walking Dead.

[via]

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American Airlines backs stewardess who announced she was "watching" Muslim passenger in Seat 25-A, then kicked him off flight

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A Muslim man was booted from a flight after an attendant publicly announced his name and seat number and warned him she was “watching” him. Welcome to American (real ones) Airlines.

Mohamed Ahmed Radwan had boarded a plane in Charlotte, North Carolina and the flight attendant went to the tannoy and said: “Mohamed Ahmed, Seat 25-A: I will be watching you.”

The employee made no other announcements about any other passenger. Mr Radwan asked the employee why she had made the announcements. She reportedly responded that he was being “too sensitive” [and] was told he must leave the plane as he had made the first air stewardess “uncomfortable”.

The company’s response: “We thoroughly reviewed these allegations and concluded that no discrimination occurred.”

The same way bad police use “felt threatened” as an excuse for beatings and killings, bad airlines have settled on “felt uncomfortable” as their lawyer-approved all-bases-covered method of booting Muslims from flights.

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Pumping electric current through pencil graphite - ouch

graphite

In this YouTube video, a fellow runs 10 amps through a cylinder of pencil graphite, burning his fingers (accidentally on purpose, I’d say).

He has a good article about graphite on his site:

Graphite is highly conductive unlike diamond or wood. But it is conductive along the layers, not perpendicular to them. It has many different applications. Generally it is crushed into powder that can be used to make other components like battery rods, deposited traces on electronics and such.

But pencils are the most basic use of them. If you draw a thick line using pencil on paper and measure the resistance across it, you will see your line is conductive, and if you bring your probes closer on the paper over the line, the resistance gets lower, like a potentiometer.

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Ed Snowden and Andrew "bunnie" Huang announce a malware-detecting smartphone case

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Exiled NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and legendary hardware hacker Andrew “https://boingboing.net/?s=bunnie”>bunnie” Huang have published a paper detailing their new “introspection engine” for the Iphone, an external hardware case that clips over the phone and probes its internal components with a miniature oscilloscope that reads all the radio traffic in and out of the device to see whether malicious software is secretly keeping the radio on after you put it in airplane mode.
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Sheepview: cameras attached to roaming ruminants in the Faeroe Islands

Photo: Visit Faeroe Islands

Sheep in the remote Faeroe islands, between Scotland and Norway, have been fitted with cameras to provide a vast corpus of sheepcam footage. At Sheepview, you may soon be able to explore the windblasted heaths and crags as if you were yourself an ambling, grass-munching ruminant—and help Google to catch up and generate street-view imagery that islanders need.

As the sheep walk and graze around the island, the pictures are sent back to Andreassen with GPS co-ordinates, which she then uploads to Google Street View.

“Here in the Faroe Islands we have to do things our way,” says Andreassen. “Knowing that we are so small and Google is so big, we felt this was the thing to do.”

So far the Sheep View team have taken panoramic images of five locations on the island. They have also produced 360 video so you can explore the island as if you are, quite literally, a sheep.

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Police fetch high-powered rifle to kill family dog at child's birthday party

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Fox News reports that kids watched as a Wynnewood, Oklahoma police officer used a high-powered rifle, retrieved from his vehicle, to kill a dog after it “lunged at him” when he entered their gated, fenced property searching for someone who had not lived there in a decade.

The police chief said the officer was serving a warrant, which gave him legal authority to be on the private property. However, the Malones said they were never shown any warrant. They were only told the officer was looking for someone who had listed that address as his ten years ago…

“I respect what the police do, but this was senseless, but he didn’t show any remorse and didn’t even act like he was sorry or anything,” Malone told FOX 25.

The Malones believe the death of their dog could have been avoided either by the use of less-lethal force or by fact checking on the warrant.

The Wynnewood cops have already been caught in a lie: the chief claims the dog was shot “coming around the house” to attack the officer, but video shows that the dog was killed behind a closed gate in an expansive, open yard. “The police chief said he hasn’t seen the video,” reports Fox. “He said ‘His officers have every right to shoot dogs if they feel in danger.'”

The first rule of modern U.S. police training is that you are a soldier. The second rule is kill the dogs.

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Funny GIF of Laura Ingraham realizing that she's Nazi saluting at the Republican National Convention

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The classic Roman salute, complete with a stiff quarter turn, is an entirely natural thing to do after a stirring patriotic speech in the service of an anti-immigrant populist strongman. She makes a smooth recovery, if you ask me, once she realizes what she just did. But it’s the suggestion of oops that makes it: it’s easy to find photos of politicians and pundits appearing to salute like this, but video showing that crisp, heel-clicking snap are magic. Some believe it was intentional, a dogwhistle a la “Sheriff’s Star”.

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Donald Trump and his family watch grimly as Ted Cruz refuses to endorse him

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Last night, Ted Cruz refused to endorse Republican nominee Donald Trump at the party’s national convention in Ohio. This photo’s doing the rounds and supposedly shows the moment when it became clear he would not do so. It’s sweet revenge for Cruz, to whom Trump was nasty during the primaries. On the one hand, teleprompter shots suggest the endorsement was expected, contrary to some claims. On the other hand, video of the key moment—Cruz telling the audience to vote their conscience—shows Trump not giving much of a damn at all by that point. The photo was from earlier in the speech.

The image above is a low-res close up of this Getty Images photo by Win McNamee.

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100 yard-long kraken surfaces near Antarctica, and other tabloid stunners

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“It’s war!” screams the cover of Us magazine.

Forget Iraq and Afghanistan, Syria and Nigeria. It’s Kim Kardashian vs Taylor Swift that has Us mag so excited, after the reality TV queen called the singer a “f–king liar.”

People magazine also gets in on the war reporting as Kim and Tay’s “feud explodes” after Kim videoed husband Kanye West asking Swift’s permission to include a song lyric saying they might have sex – but failed to tell Taylor that he was going to call her a “bitch” that he made famous. Therein lies the philosophical difference that evidently is the pop culture equivalent of assassinating the Archduke of Austro-Hungary.

The Globe is preoccupied with another battle-front: “Queen Kate’s War With Di’s Brother!” Ignoring for a moment the fact that Kate is neither Queen, nor will she be even when HRH Queen Elizabeth pops her royal clogs, Duchess Kate is supposedly outraged that Diana’s brother, Earl Charles Spencer, is renting out his stately home – and Diana’s last resting place – to well-heeled tourists. for up to $40,000- a-night. Perhaps the Globe is forgetting that Buckingham Palace is currently open to visitors until October 1 for a mere 37 pounds (about $49)?

A “Top Secret GOP Convention Plot” to ensure that Donald Trump wins the presidential election is exposed by the National Enquirer. I’m not sure how secret a “convention plot” can be when it’s being televised live every day, but the Enquirer nevertheless reveals Trump’s “7-Step Plan to destroy Hillary.” This supposedly involves the GOP exposing seven dark secrets about the Democratic candidate and her husband, including Hillary’s alleged “lesbian shenanigans,” her spell in an Illinois mental hospital “following a nervous breakdown caused by Bill’s cheating,” Bill’s illegitimate love child with an ex-lover, exposing Monica Lewinsky’s secret diaries, and Hillary’s secret pact to divorce Bill if she loses the election. Let’s see how many of these are even mentioned at the convention, let alone becoming major planks in the GOP platform, shall we?

Actor Nick Nolte has only “4 weeks to live!” claims the Globe. “Nolte dead in a month,” agrees the Enquirer. Evidently he is suffering “clogged sinuses” (sounds like a death sentence to me) and “cardiac palpitations.” How do they know he has only days to live? “Friends are worried,” reports the Globe. He was reportedly spotted wandering the streets of Los Angeles “in filthy clothes.” As everyone knows, dirty clothes are an infallible sign of terminal late-stage chronic fashion blindness. Death is sure to follow swiftly (or Kardashianly, depending on which side of that conflict you’re on.). I’m starting a death count-down. Let’s see if Mr. Nolte is still with us in four week’s time. He won’t let the tabloids down like Val Kilmer, who over a year ago was given just weeks to live but stubbornly refuses to go. Or Cher, or Bill Clinton, or the Queen, or George Bush, or all the others who have been given weeks to live by the tabloids yet …read more