Saturday, December 8, 2012

The art of living is more like...

Willfull ignorance of science is a bipartisan value. Why would politicians like Barack Obama and Paul Ryan be willfully ignorant? It's easy - to avoid offending the equally ignorant within the electorate. In other words, they pander to the ignorant so as to sweep the ignorant vote. Face facts - the earth was formed about 4.54 billion years ago. If creationists or intelligent designers (that euphemism is laughable) disagree they can stick it in their backasswards.

I've never gotten a flu vaccination because (fortunately) I don't suffer from the flu on a regular basis. That includes me in 60% of the unvaccinated U.S. population. However, this article makes the case that if 80% of the populace was vaccinated it would all but wipe out the flu. Makes me wonder.

Laura Paulini, Black Beauty, 2010

What is the world's oldest printed book? It's the Diamond Sutra from 868 A.D, a Buddhist text about impermanence. You can read a translation of it here.

Here are the 12 best business books of 2012 according to Fast Company of which I've read precisely none.

The NYT offers their list of 100 notable books of 2012. I barely have time to read a list of 100 things, how am I gonna read an entire book? Although, Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History is enticing. (Another oh-fer list for me.)

Why do educated people use bad words? (Is the implication that swearing is only for the uneducated?)

According to the Japanese miyabi principle, swearing violates the idea of elegance and should therefore be avoided. See all 9 principles at the link.

This has got to be a story from The Onion - Mom names newborn baby Hashtag. At least it didn't make the list of the most popular baby names of 2012. #10 for boys is Jack, my father's name.


When the exchange rate is 1 sixpence = $431,250 you know it's the 1652 variety of which only 8 are known to exist.
It seems money can make you happy. Specifically, $161,000 per year. On the other hand, money follows the law of diminishing returns - as you get wealthier, each additional dollar brings slightly less happiness.

It's a bird, it's a... 

Our Chinese friends have been conducting sea trials of their new aircraft carrier (the former Russian Admiral Kuznetsov) including takeoffs and landings of their J-15 fighter (based on the Russian Su-33).

Not to be outdone, an X-47B UAV was hoisted onto  the USS Harry S. Truman for deck trials and eventual flight tests. (Ours is cooler than the Chinese' and there are plenty of photos and videos at the link to prove it.)

Hear about an encounter between A-1 Skyraiders and MiG 17s over Vietnam and how the Skyraiders came out on top.

Must Watch aviation pr0n of the week - Les Chevalier du Ciel

Listen. Fripp - When the Rains Fall.

Watch. Lennon + typography.

See. Machu Picchu, 16 gigapixels.

Animate. John Coltrane, Giant Steps.

Dry. Your balls.


With the holiday dining season upon us here are some tips for restaurant wait staff - things you should never do. #32 Never touch a customer.

Git yer chant on. Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb done Gregorian style. (I know it sounds corny but I really like it. High school choirs take note.)

Create words from Google images with Google Type. (This thing doesn't work that great. It took six attempts before it came back with an image for each letter. How hard is it to find an "O"?)
I'm not sure what I'd use this for but Random Selection in Random Image shows you a random image and highlights a random area within that image.

Where art goes to die.

Silver Screen 

Will you be getting a new TV for Xmas this year? You'll probably want to read about how it ruins movies.

More than you ever wanted to know about Dr. Strangelove.

Cross a Star Wars Stormtrooper with a Predator and what do you get? Predatrooper.

Ridley Scott is directing a film adaptation of Joe Haldeman's Forever War.

I have no recollection of why I bookmarked this article about Keats.

Unexpected collaborations - Robert Fripp and Bill Gates.

Maybe he should've been called Niels Bheer. The physicist had a direct pipeline (literally) to the Carlsberg brewery next door so that he was never without fresh beer on tap.


The video learning approach to OpenGL.

According to this immense list of facts, byte is a contraction of "by eight."

Nerd fitness? Is there such a thing? It appears so as evidenced by this list of 43 ways to level up your life (#6 Stop drinking soda.). (If it was truly nerdy the list would have 42 items.)

I think this is a nice bit of marketing. IE sucks...less. Owning your own pain is good.

Know your geek by his facial hair with Beards of Silicon Valley. (This indicates I'm a "software developer" although that's what I would call residual self image.)
Solving Super Mario using AI.

Differentiate online. (Calculus, not distinction.)

The hierarchy of digital distractions.
SciFact and SciFi

Science is solving the truly important problems. Like making tastier bacon through mapping of pig DNA. Think I'm joking? Check out the Swine Genome Sequencing Consortium.

That gray line is actually a strand of DNA.
There's one less mysterious sound. Remember the bloop? Turns out it's just an icequake.

Star Trek geeks are gonna be lining up for this wallpaper-sized image of Enterprises.
Diminished Mental Faculty
Isn't this where we started?

Yoko Ono's latest contributions to men's fashions. (C'mon, I dare someone to try to defend this.)
I wish they had invented the Crib Dribbler about 20 years ago.
Clockalpyse is counting down to the Mayan apocalypse. So while we wait, enjoy Taco Spin.

...wrestling than dancing. ~Marcus Aurelius

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