Boing Boing 

Stop-motion Atari re-creation

Tony sez, "Attached is a stop-motion video my filmmaker friend Justin Grizzoffi and I made a couple of years ago. It was super easy to make - we simply edited together a couple hundred still photos of Post-Its stuck to a wall and scored it using samples from an old Casio SK1 keyboard."

Post-It Note Atari (Thanks, Tony!)

Human skull papercraft

Ravensblight has a great collection of free spooky papercraft models, just in time for Hallowe'en.

free Human Skull paper model (via Paper Forest)

Healthy baby poop gallery

Wonder what healthy baby-poo looks like? Wonder no more: here's a gallery of normal, healthy steaming baby excreta:

This photo guide to baby poop will give you a good idea of what's normal and what's not as your newborn grows, drinks breast milk or formula, and starts eating solids. You'll find out when not to worry and when it's wise to be concerned.

As a general rule, if you see anything completely out of the ordinary in your baby's diaper, play it safe and call the doctor.

Fair warning: These are pictures of real baby poop! Please view only if you're comfortable with that. If not, you can read this description without photos instead.

Baby poop: A visual guide (via Neatorama)

(Image: Diaper pail, a Creative Commons Attribution photo from Ingamun's photostream)

Successful marriage proposal via 3D-printed ring

Bre sez, "Fynflood used his MakerBot [ed: 3D printer] to create a ring and then proposed with it! She said yes!"

The ring I printed, and then used to propose to my girlfriend.

I printed it with black ABS, and then printed a small white cube and set it with some magic glue eagleapex left at Hive.

I drew the 2d shape in gimp, then had a friend render it in 3d using sketchup (I fail at 3D). I made some adjustments using Blender for the final print.

She said yes! Now to get our MakerBot to print with white gold.

MakerBot LOVE (Thanks, Bre!)

Octavia Butler and Carl Brandon tribute reading, San Francisco, Oct 10

Rina writes,
Saturday is Litquake Day! And we have a very special reading for you.

Color Me SF: The Science Fiction Worlds of Octavia Butler and Carl Brandon

Our guests reading will be Jewelle Gomez & Claire Light. There will also be discussion on Butler and Brandon,and Q & A moderated by Terry Bisson. We will be charging $5 at the door, with all of the money going to the Octavia Butler Scholarship. Bar proceeds for the night will also go to the Scholarship. Tips, as usual, will go to Variety Children's Charity of Northern California.

At The Variety Preview Room, The Hobart Bldg., 582 Market St. @ Montgomery, 1st floor of The Hobart Bldg. Entrance is between Quiznos and Citibank
Doors Open 6:00pm
Readings start 7:00pm
Seating is limited; first come first seated; we will have the event miked so that you can hang in the lounge and listen.

Saturday is Litquake Day

Disney's giant, robotic eyeball prototype

A reader writes, "Disney's Imagineers realize that the eyes convey emotions and a two-foot eye prototype showcases the newest concept for animatronic models."

Imagineers realize that the eyes convey emotions and a two-foot eye prototype showcases our newest concept. It's a new type of mechanism that uses electromagnets to create realistic eye motions. There is only a single moving part -- the eye itself -- and no wear points. That means faster, more realistic movement and longer life.

As Disney Parks continues to experiment and innovate, as with our newest Autonomatronics technology, we'll certainly be talking about it on this blog. Stay tuned.

Hands, Eyes Convey Emotions For Disney's Audio-Animatronics Technology

Fair use and choreography

Joe sez, "My friend Julia is a choreographer who is doing some really interesting work looking at how sampling and fair use questions apply to the world of dance. This link is an artist's statement on an upcoming show, Punk Yankees:
I had the good fortune of receiving a choreographic fellowship from the Maggie Alessee National Center for Choreography (MANCC) to support the research and initial development of Punk Yankees, which is the title of our anniversary concert. While at MANCC, I began working with the ensemble to address my research questions: What defines "fair use" in dance? Is it permissible to "borrow" choreographic devices if the movement is reinvented? If the dancers can't execute the movement in the way it was originally intended, is there something interesting about that failure? If someone "stylistically" references a choreographer, should it be acknowledged as a derivative work, or is it what naturally occurs through dance education and lineage? Ultimately what we created was a work-in-progress that experimented with meta-theatrical devices and formal conventions to elucidate these provocative questions with transparency and humor.

The title Punk Yankees came from some research I was doing online about piracy and art. Matt Mason, author of the book The Pirate's Dilemma, talks about the fact that piracy and appropriation (in the sense of intellectual property) has historically been linked to the creation of new markets, which he calls a form of "punk" capitalism. He also traces the word "Yankee" to an old Dutch slang word "Janke," meaning pirate. Ironically, Matt Mason was recently a keynote speaker at Dance/USA's Annual Conference in Houston, TX (June 3-6), in the session "Fair Use and Piracy: How They Each Support a Sustainable Dance Field."

How do appropriation and copyright inform your work?

Steal this Dance

Warren Ellis's readers' tour through Etsy

Warren Ellis has put an open call out to Whitechapel readers who have Etsy stores for their crafts to pimp their offerings for early Xmas shopping. So far, we've got wool candy, steampunk jewellery, surreal paintings, paintings of demon cats, handmade jewellery, custom toys, fashion, goggles, felted dissected animals, hand-dyed wool, chainmail, etc etc. Instant clicktrance!

Warren's Pub Table: [Sticky] Etsy People Stand Up (late 2009)

(Image: Knitted Fetal Pig Biology Project)

Juvenile dollar-mod


Spotted in the wild by the inestimable Fipi Lele, a modded US dollar bill with extra juvenile hilarity. I've seen lots of variations on this theme, but these two gags are new to me.

(Thanks, Fipi Lele!)

Google map of jailed Chinese netizens

netizensa.jpgOh, the unfortunate irony. The annotations on this Google Map are all in Chinese, so it's of little utility for a non-Chinese-speaker like myself -- but it's the most extensive such documentation I've seen about the jail locations of persons in China imprisoned for online dissidence. (via @rmack)

Quickdraw Noir, by Merrill Markoe

German expressionism meets film noir meets Saturday morning cartoon funnies. Quickdraw Noir. "The rare noir episode of Quickdraw McGraw that featured Peter Lorre. With music by Andy Prieboy." Created by the great Merrill Markoe, who is perhaps best known as David Letterman's original head writer -- she won 5 Emmys for the show. She oughta get one for this, IMHO. (Thanks, Susannah Breslin)

The Aliens: "Sunlamp Show" music video



The groovy video for this new track "Sunlamp Show" by The Aliens is Yellow Submarine-esque madness. A Scottish band, The Aliens feature Gordon Anderson, John Maclean, and Robin Jones, formerly of Beta Band. The Aliens' new album, Luna, was released in the US today by Birdman Records. The Aliens (Thanks, DKN!)

A musical clock made of stars

Jim Bumgardner has created a lovely sound project that brings to life the music of the spheres: "Wheel of Stars."
wheelofstars.jpg I downloaded public data from Hipparcos, a satellite launched by the European Space Agency in 1989 that accurately measured over a hundred thousand stars.

The data I downloaded contains position, parallax, magnitude, and color information, among other things.

Sean Bonner, upon whose blog I discovered this, says, "I highly recommend fullscreen and the use of headphones. Listening to this is hypnotic. I want it to play constantly in the background of my life."

Tweet (#4670909750)

He’s Still the Great Gore Vidal, But Boy Is He Cranky Link

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Woman gives birth in pool with dolphin, internet gives birth to meme.

(Update: From a French documentary film, says this 2004 snopes item.) This minute-and-a-half long YouTube video appears to show a mommy giving birth to her baby in a pool of water, while a curious dolphin swims and pokes around. What I don't know: Is this real life? Is it viral marketing? A film trailer? Fodder for some new furries fantasy site? Is the idea of a dolphin poking around the mom's ladyregions cute or disturbing? What does the infant think? How long can infants breathe underwater while connected via umbilical cord? Where did the video come from? Why can't I stop watching? Discuss. (via @tara, and others)

Booker White "Aberdeen Mississippi Blues"



I sure like Booker White's slapping technique!

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Kembra Pfahler's Gossip Girl Micro-Cameo Link

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Blue Jeans: The Movie Link

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Radley Metzger’s Erotic Masterpiece: The Lickerish Quartet Link

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Power To the People

As a huge fan of FlowingData, NPR and electricity, I'm super excited about this interactive map that gives you a clear view of the structure of the U.S. power grid. Clicking through, you'll see how areas of the country currently are (and aren't) connected to one another, what's in the works to improve the system, and why that matters (a lot) when you start talking about alternative energy sources. Good stuff.



In this picture, you can see the yellow lines that really seem to do a good job of efficiently linking up the whole country. Those power lines haven't been built yet. In the interactive part, you can take those off, revealing a clearer view of our current transmission infrastructure that looks more like a series of occasionally connected river systems than a grid.

Giant-sized Gary Baseman drawing for charity

Giant-Baseman Bob Self of Baby Tattoo says:
A massive 6 x 3 foot drawing (that's 72 x 36 inches, woo!) that Gary Baseman created while visiting Chaing Mai, Thailand is being auctioned on eBay. All proceeds will go to Cultural Canvas Thailand, a Chiang Mai-based organization that uses visual arts, dance, music and drama to give a voice to struggling and marginalized social groups in the local community.
Giant-sized Gary Baseman drawing for charity

Flag of Benin Empire may be the best flag depicting a decapitation in the history of the world


This flag, for the long-defunct Benin Empire, may just be the ne plus ultra of sigils. I think that when I am god-emperor of some distant land, I shall install it as my standard.

Flag of the Benin Empire (via Kottke)

Exorcisms vs. schizophrenia drugs

 2009 03 Exorcism NCBI ROFL spotted this 1994 scientific paper extract describing an Indian man in the UK who blamed his crimes on ghostly possession. When exorcisms failed, he was treated for paranoid schizophrenia. That apparently helped. From the abstract in the British Journal of Psychiatry:
Treatment commenced using trifluoperazine and clopenthixol. RESULTS. The patient underwent remission during neuroleptic treatment, despite previous evidence of genuine possession. CONCLUSIONS. Many cultures give rise to apparently genuine cases of ghost possession. Neuroleptics may relieve symptoms of exorcism-resistant possession.

"Exorcism-resistant ghost possession treated with clopenthixol." (Br J Psychiatry)
While searching for the whole paper, I found a great analysis of the case by Vaughan over at Mind Hacks.

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Funktionide hints at the future of body pillows

Designer Stefan Ulrich has come up with what could be an early prototype of a real body pillow girlfriend. He calls it Funktionide, an "emotional robot" that changes form depending on how you hold it. Combined with advanced robotics, this could yield something that is soft, cuddly, humanoid, and capable of intelligent conversation. Yes, and it breathes. You can see a slightly intimate video of a guy and his Functionide above. Funktionide by Stefan Ulrich

It's Time To Play...Is! It! Sinful!?

Say you're an average medieval Euro-Joe and you want to have sex with your wife. But first, you need to know, IS IT SINFUL? Digging through all those manuscripts of canon law can take forever (plus, as average medieval Euro-Joe, you can't read, anyway). Luckily, James A. Brundage has prepared a handy flow chart for sexual decision making the summarizes the medieval Christian church's take on when sex was OK (Think: In the dark, Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays only), and when you were totally going to go to hell.

Unfortunately, I'm not cool enough to figure out how to gank a picture from a Google Books page, so you'll have to follow this link to see the flow chart in all its glory.

The criticism that Ralph Lauren doesn't want you to see!

Last month, Xeni blogged about the photoshop disaster that is this Ralph Lauren advertisement, in which a model's proportions appear to have been altered to give her an impossibly skinny body ("Dude, her head's bigger than her pelvis"). Naturally, Xeni reproduced the ad in question. This is classic fair use: a reproduction "for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting," etc.

However, Ralph Lauren's marketing arm and its law firm don't see it that way. According to them, this is an "infringing image," and they thoughtfully took the time to send a DMCA takedown notice to our awesome ISP, Canada's Priority Colo. One of the things that makes Priority Colo so awesome is that they don't automatically act on DMCA takedowns. Instead, they pass them on to us and we talk about whether they pass the giggle-test.

This one doesn't.

So, instead of responding to their legal threat by suppressing our criticism of their marketing images, we're gonna mock them. Hence this post.

As Wendy Seltzer from the Chilling Effects project said, "Sounds like a pretty solid fair use case to me. If criticism diminishes its effectiveness, that's different from the market substitution copyright protects against. And I've rarely seen a thinner DMCA form-letter."

So, to Ralph Lauren, GreenbergTraurig, and PRL Holdings, Inc: sue and be damned. Copyright law doesn't give you the right to threaten your critics for pointing out the problems with your offerings. You should know better. And every time you threaten to sue us over stuff like this, we will:

a) Reproduce the original criticism, making damned sure that all our readers get a good, long look at it, and;

b) Publish your spurious legal threat along with copious mockery, so that it becomes highly ranked in search engines where other people you threaten can find it and take heart; and

c) Offer nourishing soup and sandwiches to your models.

Update: Looks like Photoshop Disaster's ISP caved to a similar notice.

DMCA Infringement Notification

Update:: Ralph Lauren accepts responsibility for the dodgy 'shop, but no word on its DMCA takedown.

Love Cake, a baking song by Rocky and Balls


Teen Brit ukulele sensation Rocky and Balls have a new song, called "Love Cake."

We love cakes. We love eating cakes and making cakes, so we wrote this song to sing whilst making said cakes.

The ecologist who found his wedding ring

Lost-and-found wedding ringRead the rest

Femke Hiemstra print from Pressure Printing

Femmmkeeee The fine artisans at Pressure Printing have been busy, following up their stunning Ron English piece with this lovely intaglio fine art print from a drawing by Amsterdam-based painter Femke Hiemstra. Femke also has a new book out, Rock Candy, collecting her phantasmagorical fairy tails. Last year, my wife purchased a small Hiemstra original from Roq La Rue Gallery as a birthday gift for me and it brings me spooky joy every day. The new piece from Pressure Printing, in a signed/numbered edition of 100, is 8.75" x 12.75" and sells for $150. It's titled "Haniwa." The Pressure Printing blog has terrific photos of the drawing and printmaking process.
Femke Hiemstra's Haniwa

Video: Finnish rappers, age 4



Ella ja Aleksi is a Finnish musical group featuring two four-year-old rappers. This video for the song "Yöjuna Rovaniemelle " is an absolute delight. (Thanks, Kirsten Anderson!)