"We are not adapted to handle fast-acting carbohydrates," Ludwig continues. "Glucose is the gold standard of energy metabolism. The brain is exquisitely dependent on having a continuous supply of glucose: too low a glucose level poses an immediate threat to survival. [But] too high a level causes damage to tissues, as with diabetes. The body is designed to keep blood glucose within a tight range, and it does this beautifully, even with extreme nutrient ratios: we can survive indefinitely on a diet of 60 percent carbohydrates and 20 percent fat, or 20 percent carbohydrates and 60 percent fat. But we never [before] had to assimilate a heavy dose of high-glycemic carbohydrates."Link (via Kottke)
China Central Television (CCTV), the state television station, first raised public worries over the quality of domestic soy sauce by uncovering a substandard workshop in central China's Hubei Province, where piles of waste human hair were found. The hairs were treated in special containers to distill amino acid, the most common substance contained in soybean sauce.Link
Human hair is rich in protein content, just like soybean, wheat and bran, the conventional and legally accepted raw ingredients for the production of soy sauce.
You know those little packets in vitamin bottles and clothes that are supposed to keep them fresh? Well, many of the little meal packs dropped on Afghanistan contained one of those packets (called a desiccant) to keep the food fresh. Unfortunately, the Afghans aren't familiar with desiccants so they tore them open and ate the powder. Some thought it was medicine, so they noshed it straight. Others figured it was a funky American spice, so they sprinkled it on their beans, rice, or pasta. Lots of Afghans got sick, though we don't know if any deaths occurred. In fact, it's hard to say whether people got sick from chowing down on desiccant or because the food in the packets was usually spoiled.Link (Via Reality Carnival)
Professor Lawrence Lessig, chair of the Creative Commons project was clearly excited: "The announcement by the BBC of its intent to develop a Creative Archive has been the single most important event in getting people to understand the potential for digital creativity, and to see how such potential actually supports artists and artistic creativity." He went to enthuse "If the vision proves a reality, Britain will become a centre for digital creativity, and will drive the many markets – in broadband deployment and technology – that digital creativity will support."Link (Thanks, Simon!)
It's an interesting idea, but I suspect that it's suffering from a failure of imagination. On the one hand, cycles are cheap and getting cheaper -- yes, CGI is processor-hungry and that hunger is ballooning, but CPUs are ballooning faster still. I expect that in the medium-term, the rendering expense will be paltry as compared to custom code development, artists and especially marketing. If you're starting with a couple hundred mil in budget, dropping one, two or even five percent on a bunch of white-box PCs is just not that big a deal.
Now, indie filmmakers, students, and garage auteurs, OTOH, really can't afford the cycles to render a cinematic quality CGI film. These are the kinds of people a SHREK@HOME screensaver could really serve, and if you made it social, it could do double-duty.
Ultimately, the largest expense in an Internet marketplace where anything is available always anywhere is marketing: the more choice, the more expensive influencing choice becomes.
So a social SHREK@HOME could engage its audience not just for their cycles, but for their evangelism. We see glimmers of that in some machinima projects, like Red v Blue or in Flash-shorts like Homestar Runner, a clubbish sense of ownership by its fans that turn them into relentless marketers of the net-art.
The more engaged fans are with work, the purer the evangelism (hence the blogging bore and every other otaku who can run on about her hobby forever). It's hard to be really engaged in the creative process of "shooting" CGI -- I don't know enough about 3D animation or visual art to second-guess those who do. But there are ways that even the unskilled can contribute.
Imagine a distributed renderer that included along the bottom thumbnails of alternate test-renders of the current sequence: different lighting, camera, even new inverse-kinematics and chaining. These different sequences could be created by the filmmaker and/or by more knowledgeable fans. While I render out the authoritative version, I can click on any of these little animated thumbnails and devote an equal number of cycles to rendering it, producing, in effect, an "audience cut" of the movie that can be matched with the foley and ADR in post to allow for different views on the same flick.
On top of that, layer the useful bits MMOs: guilds, pledges, fan-sites, etc. Create affinity communities around different edits and renders. The more excitement you build for your movie, the more cycles end up being devoted to its production: the more cycles, the more variable renders and the more excitement.
The software is pretty do-able, it's the kind of thing Nelson and Marc were doing at Popular Power and Adam "distributed.net" Beberg was talking about with COSM years ago. The legal apparatus might be harder, but a CC-license could take care of that.
The result would be ten million times more exciting than the mundane process of donating some of your cycles to Shrek 3 -- it would be the basis for an entirely new way of financing and executing film production. Link (via /.)
While Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld may not have signed a ban on new consumer digital-imaging technologies, he did express clear concern about the unforeseen impact of such technologies during the Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on May 7.Link to Wired News story; Link to previous BoingBoing post
"People are running around with digital cameras and taking these unbelievable photographs and passing them off, against the law, to the media, to our surprise, when they had not even arrived in the Pentagon," Rumsfeld said.
According to [DoD spokesperson Lt. Col. Ken] McClellan, some Defense Department lawyers may be reviewing how the spread of consumer digital-imaging technology among military contractors and enlisted personnel affects the military's obligation to abide by a Geneva Convention article against holding prisoners up to public ridicule. "Lawyers may have looked at that and said, 'It's probably a good idea to get these things out of the prisons.' There's no Pentagon-induced rule in the theater at this time ... but there may or may not be some discussion taking place as to how the [Pentagon's April 14 directive on commercial wireless technology] might be supplemented in Iraq to prevent things we saw at Abu Ghraib."
In the video, which was posted on a pay-per-view Web site, Tenderloin beat cop Darryl Watts played out a fantasy where he pretended to be a john and a sheriff's department employee acted the part of a prostitute referred to as "Myra." [Ed note: Actually, the PPV site we found spells the character's name as "Mira."] The video did not tap into any law enforcement themes common in the pornography industry. No badges, batons, uniforms or pistols were produced during the film, police said. (...)Police sources said that Watts, who has been on the force for three years, is a "good, productive street cop." Last year, he was hailed for capturing a man who was chasing another man with a butcher knife near Union Square.Link to SF Examiner story (Thanks, Marc).
The question here isn't really "Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep?" so much as "Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep-Like Beings With Long, Dextrous Tongues That Make Them Moan In Ecstacy?" It's the short story Philip K. Dick never got around to writing.Link (of course it's not worksafe, silly.)
I am sorry to report that much of Elena's story is not true. She did not travel around the zone by herself on a motorcycle. Motorcycles are banned in the zone, as is wandering around alone, without an escort from the zone administration. She made one trip there with her husband and a friend. They traveled in a Chornobyl car that picked them up in Kyiv.If so -- ah, well. C'est la web. The photos are still amazing. Link (Thanks, chupacabra)
She did, however, bring a motorcycle helmet. They organized their trip through a Kyiv travel agency and the administration of the Chornobyl zone (and not her father). They were given the same standard excursion that most Chernobyl tourists receive. When the Web site appeared, Zone Administration personnel were in an uproar over who approved a motorcycle trip in the zone. When it turned out that the motorcycle story was an invention, they were even less pleased about this fantasy Web site.
Because of those problems, Elena and her husband have changed the Web site and the story considerably in the last few days. Earlier versions of the narrative lied more blatantly about Elena taking lone motorcycle trips in the zone. That has been changed to merely suggest that she does so, which is still misleading.
One of the most obvious changes is that the new uniforms are unisex. The zipper has been extended, and the uniform's butt flap has been expanded, so GI Janes aren't literally caught with their pants down if they have to pee.Link
FFW's body armor is probably the biggest improvement, however. It sits on a series of foam pads around the rib cage, so there's a 2.5-inch gap between the harness and the body. It keeps the GI cool. And it's almost imperceptibly light -- unlike today's bulletproof vests, many of which are about as comfortable as that lead apron the dentist makes you wear during X-rays. But the scarab-like shell can take five to seven direct hits from a machine gun, and it doubles as a holster for ammunition and grenades.
"Boston's Museum of Fine Arts has a big exhibit of some very beautiful Japanese postcards, many of which can be seen on the museum's Web site. If you want to see them in person, hurry -- the show closes 6 June. And who couldn't love this monkey-trainer New Year's card [thumbnail at left --XJ]?
I find it interesting to note that Google image search doesn't have any of the pics of the Abu Ghraib abuse that are floating everywhere else on the net. A search for "Abu Ghraib" does bring up photos, but none of the ones that we all saw on CNN and in the Wall Street Journal. I had searched there not long after the story broke and found none of them, but I figured it was just too new. Now, after weeks of spidering time, they still aren't there. Anyone have an idea why?Link
UPDATE: Intrepid BoingBoing reader Andrew says, "I tried the image search at altavista.com (making sure to turn off "family filtering" or whatever) and some of the abuse photos turn up if you hit "next" enough. Strangely, searching for "Abu Ghraib abuse" turns up *nothing* and searching for "Abu Ghraib torture" turns up virtually nothing with images.google.com."
UPDATE 2: Tim Ireland says, "This happens because Google only updates its image database every 6-12 months. The last update was January 2004, before the publication of these images and their broadcast on the web."
This reminds me of browsing through the bins at my favorite punk rock record store when I was a teenager, and seeing that some snarky, pop-hating employee had creatively relabeled the bin for one famous hair-rock band as "Oreo Speedcookie." Snip from Cookie Mongoloid website:
Cookie Mongoloid is Sesame Speed Metal! See the Cookie Mongoloid in all his blue, furry, googly-eyed glory backed by the baddest of gender mixed metal bands as they decimate and regurgitate your childhood favorites in an abrasive metal wrath. See their harem of gothic gyrators, the Cookies, demonstrate such elemental concepts as up and down in a blaze of lights, smoke and pyrotechnic cookie shrapnel.Link.
Update: Chronicle Books editor Alan Rapp says, "Part of the joke here (I think) is that "cookie monster" is a vocal style associated with black metal and grindcore, notable for its deep basso eeeevil rumble. "
"For instance, in one experiment, the Lund team made trunks out of gallium phosphide and parts of the branches out of gallium arsenide phosphide. The researchers expect combinations of materials such as these to produce a light-emitting diode: The trunk would carry current to the branches, where the gallium arsenide phosphide would convert it into light. Alternatively, the branches could serve as light-harvesting structures, as in a solar cell, which would then shuttle excited electrons into the trunk." Link
We're all familiar with blogs (ummm, you're reading one now), but now, we have unashamed folks who are not afraid to provide you with a daily song that has been gracing their ears. Good stuff, big bands, and totally the definition of fair use. The average blog user has 12 readers... so... if I give one song to 12 people a day, that seems entirely fair, when compared to say, WOXY radio that had to shut down because it couldn't afford the licensing and bandwidth of its 50,000 listeners.Best of all is the long list of MP3 blogs, which are a sampler's paradise. Link (Thanks, Th0m!)
So, I love it! It's the best of fair use, with the peer spice. Now all we need, is about 3 kabillion more so that these brave souls aren't overloaded, or targetted otherwise.
FAFBLOG: So! How's the Family?Link
JAMES DOBSON: The Family is in deadly danger, Fafnir.
FB: Danger? Oh no! I like families!
JD: Yes, danger from the homosexual agenda which has been trying for decades to destroy it.
FB: I never knew homosexuals had an agenda! I just thought they were ordinary people who were easily stereotyped as lovers of musical theater.
JD: So they and the gay-controlled Hollywood elite would have you believe. But the Forces of Gay are now closer than ever to destroying the divine institution of the civil marriage certificate, and with it, the family itself.
Joey "AccordionGuy" DeVilla, a Filipino-born Canadian, has written a spirited editorial in response to a jackass racist blogger who asserts that the Canadians who died in the Boer War (!) and elsewhere certainly didn't intend for Toronto to be annexed by the "Third World," and says that the non-whites of Canada are less Canadian, with "no knowledge or affection for the old Canada, in either their hearts or minds."
Joey's response: "Fuck you, eh." And the banner, above. Link