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Guardian reconstructs Olympics basketball match in LEGO

If NBC's Olympics coverage were this adorable, I would not only watch it, I would forgive them for delaying it and pretending like it were live. Video: "Brick-by-brick men's basketball: USA v France" (Guardian.co.uk)

An investment fund that makes trades based on superstitious beliefs

Shing-Tat Chung says:

NewImageWould you trust a superstitious robot with your money? Can technology operate with human characteristics, interpreting data and information with basic human behaviors. The Superstitious Fund Project is an investment Fund that is run by a superstitious autonomous Algorithm. As a one year experiment it operates and trades purely on superstitious beliefs. Buying or Selling on Numerology and in accordance to Lunar Phases. For example it has the fear of the number 13 and a full moon. It also develops its own lucky ad unlucky values, just as we do all the time. We are hardwired to imagine patterns that give us the illusion of control. Win a tennis match, and we've got lucky socks. The Algorithm creates these patterns throughout the year, ranking and deranking superstitions. They are then used as a new logic in trading.

As a one year experiment, £4828.88 was invested from participants over 50 cities around the world. After the one year, the balance will be returned at either a profit or a loss.

The project provides an alternate viewpoint on how technology can operate, highlighting issues on algorithms in our world. The flash crash of 2010 is a good example of where we create these algorithms and soon become less privy to their following actions. The Crash was caused by trading algorithms - but we don't know why or how. There is a world in which a new world of algorithms exist that becomes less accessible to. The Fund also comments on our increasing irrational behaviors. Contrary to belief, we are actually becoming more superstitious due to a number of reasons, and as a result our world is shaping and has shaped around our irrationalities.

A Superstitious Fund

Team Geek: A Software Developer's Guide to Working Well with Others - excerpt from new book

Here's an excerpt (PDF file) from the new O'Reilly book, Team Geek: A Software Developer's Guide to Working Well with Others, by Brian Fitzpatrick and Ben Collins-Sussman.

NewImageIn a perfect world, software engineers who produce the best code are the most successful. But in our perfectly messy world, success also depends on how you work with people to get your job done.

In this highly entertaining book, Brian Fitzpatrick and Ben Collins-Sussman cover basic patterns and anti-patterns for working with other people, teams, and users while trying to develop software. This is valuable information from two respected software engineers whose popular series of talks—including "Working with Poisonous People"—has attracted hundreds of thousands of followers.

Writing software is a team sport, and human factors have as much influence on the outcome as technical factors. Even if you’ve spent decades learning the technical side of programming, this book teaches you about the often-overlooked human component. By learning to collaborate and investing in the "soft skills" of software engineering, you can have a much greater impact for the same amount of effort.

Read excerpt (PDF)

Buy Team Geek on Amazon

Enthralling Books: Blood Music, by Greg Bear

This is one in a series of essays about enthralling books. I asked my friends and colleagues to recommend a book that took over their life. I told them the book didn't have to be a literary masterpiece. The only thing that mattered was that the book captivated them and carried them into the world within its pages, making them ignore the world around them. I asked: "Did you shirk responsibilities so you could read it? Did you call in sick? Did you read it until dawn? That's the book I want you to tell us about!" See all the essays in the Enthralling Book series here. -- Mark

NewImageBlood Music by Greg Bear is one of the most enthralling books I've ever read.

I've been absolutely riveted and enthralled by many of Greg's books, but this one has a unique quality that I found most appealing. It's the vast breadth of the progression of the story, the shear imaginative distance traveled from where it starts to where it ends. And it's not a long book!

Published in 1985, the story begins in a very plausible modern setting and deals with the world of microbiology and genetic engineering. It is credited with being the first account of nanotechnology in science fiction. It quickly develops very interesting, realistic characters and intrigue. It starts to play like a fascinating thriller about containing a science experiment gone wrong. It accelerates steadily with increasing suspense and just as you are excitedly anticipating where you think it might be going, it leaps way over your expectations. The scope of imagination is mind boggling. It pours on more and more extreme departures from the expectations established by the modest, reality-based beginning. It turns upside down every aspect of the ideas and the genre it explores.

The book escalates like nothing I've ever read. It goes so far, so quickly, yet builds very cleverly from such a realistic and familiar context, it seems like it's really happening. Over and over again I was not only surprised, but shocked by the incredible imaginative leaps. I was genuinely freaked out at times. I actually found myself exclaiming aloud!

I could not stop reading it. I was taken far beyond my wildest expectations. The utterly un-anticipatable and mind bending conclusion inspired a truly transcendent experience. Like the characters in the book, I was completely transformed. I'm different now. In a good way.

Now you should read it. Or listen to it. It's also one of the best audio books I've ever experienced.

Buy Blood Music on Amazon

UK high court experiences flash of sanity, decriminalizes sarcastic aviation tweeting

In a rare and welcome moment of sanity, the UK High Court has ruled that guy who made a snarky tweet about bombing an airport is not a criminal. The judge's written opinion is not kind to the cops and prosecutors who spent years chasing Paul Chambers, the tweeter in question, pointing out that no one at any point believed that Chambers was serious, that no one was credibly alarmed, and that they were all, basically, total idiots. Wired UK's Mark Brown has more.

"Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed," his infamous tweet read. "You've got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I am blowing the airport sky high!"

A week later, he was arrested by anti-terror police for making a bomb threat. In May 2010, the Doncaster magistrates court found him guilty "of sending, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message of a menacing character." He was fined and lost his job.

After a lengthy appeal process, Chambers has finally been acquitted. In the judgement document, the high court said, "the appeal against conviction will be allowed on the basis that this tweet did not constitute or include a message of a menacing character; we cannot usefully take this aspect of the appeal further."

UK High Court overturns conviction for Twitter joke

Apple won't carry an ebook because it mentions Amazon

Author Holly Lisle has a series of online writing guides that she sells. One volume of this, "How To Think Sideways Lesson 6: How To Discover (Or Create) Your Story’s Market" was rejected by Apple's iBooks store. At first, Apple told Lisle that she wasn't allowed to have "live links" to Amazon in her books. So she removed the links and resubmitted the book, and then Apple rejected it again, telling her that they wouldn't sell her book because it mentioned Amazon, a competitor of its iBooks store.

But I also will not deal with this sort of head-up-ass behavior from a distributor. You don’t tell someone “The problem is the live links,” and then, when that person has complied with your change request and removed the live links, turn around and say, “No, no. The problem is the CONTENT. You can’t mention Amazon in your lesson.

This is not professional behavior from a professional market.

And cold moment of truth here—you cannot write a writing course that includes information on publishing and self-publishing and NOT mention Amazon. It’s the place where your writers are going to make about 90% of their money.

So I’m pulling ALL my work from the iBookstore today. I apologize to iBookstore fans. I tried. Hard.

But I’m done.

Apple Made Its Decision. My Turn. avatar (via Hacker News)

Report of working 3D printed gun


Popular Science's John Robb reports on a person who claims that his 3D-printed pistol can successfully fire live ammunition, though not with total reliability. The same person then went on to print a working AR-15 rifle (this is a substantial advance on last year's account of a 3D printable AR-15 automatic conversion kit. This event has raised something of a crisis for Thingiverse, the online repository for 3D printable meshes, which is contemplating whether it will host files that can be printed into "weapons."

An amateur gunsmith, operating under the handle of "HaveBlue" (incidentally, "Have Blue" is the codename that was used for the prototype stealth fighter that became the Lockheed F-117), announced recently in online forums that he had successfully printed a serviceable .22 caliber pistol.

Despite predictions of disaster, the pistol worked. It successfully fired 200 rounds in testing.

HaveBlue then decided to push the limits of what was possible and use his printer to make an AR-15 rifle. To do this, he downloaded plans for an AR-15 in the Solidworks file format from a site called CNCGunsmith.com. After some small modifications to the design, he fed about $30 of ABS plastic feedstock into his late-model Stratasys printer. The result was a functional AR-15 rifle. Early testing shows that it works, although it still has some minor feed and extraction problems to be worked out.

A Working Assault Rifle Made With a 3-D Printer

Record labels won't share Pirate Bay winnings with artists; they're keeping it for record companies

The record labels that successfully sued The Pirate Bay for millions on the grounds that the network had infringed upon artists' copyrights have announced that it will not share any of the money it receives from the suit with those artists. Instead, the money will be used to bankroll more "enforcement" -- that is, salaries and fees for people who work for the industry association. From TorrentFreak:

According to former Pirate Bay spokesman Peter Sunde, one of the people convicted in the case, this shows who the real “thieves” are.

“Regarding the issue that they’ve already divvied up the loot, it’s always fun to see that they call it ‘recovered money’ (i.e. money they’ve lost) but that they’re not going to give the artists in question any of it,” Sunde told TorrentFreak.

“They say that people who download give money to thieves – but if someone actually ends up paying (in this case: three individuals) then it’s been paid for. So who’s the thief when they don’t give the money to the artists?”

According to Sunde the news doesn’t come as a surprise.

“As far as I know, no money ever won in a lawsuit by IFPI or the RIAA has even gone to any actual artist,” Sunde says. “It’s more likely the money will be spent on cocaine than the artists that they’re ‘defending’.”

Music Labels Won’t Share Pirate Bay Loot With Artists

Astronaut Sally Ride's partner won't receive government death benefits. Thanks, homophobes.

Sally Kohn at TIME, writing about the female domestic partner of Sally Ride, physicist and first American woman in space: "Under federal law, Ride’s domestic partner of 27 years will not receive death benefits or Social Security payments. Is that any way to treat a hero?" It's an injustice, but it's not NASA's fault. Nor, of course, is the injustice limited to the case of Sally Ride and the woman who loved her. This is all DOMA. (via Steve Silberman)

Poop Strong: Cancer patient whose costs exceeded insurance cap wins victory, via Twitter

Arijit, 31, is graduate student in Arizona who was diagnosed about a year and a half ago with stage IV colon cancer. He endured multiple surgeries, and grueling rounds of chemotherapy. Then, in February, 2012, the cost of his treatment exceeded the lifetime limit on his graduate student health plan, which is managed by Aetna.

His coverage was terminated. His cancer was not.

He launched what we cancer patients sometimes refer to as an internet lemonade stand: a site called Poop Strong (a light-hearted parody of "Livestrong"). At poopstrong.org, he invited well-wishers to make a donation or buy schwag, with all proceeds going to his healthcare.

But, big news today, as his pal Kirk Caron tells Boing Boing,

In the six months between when he was dropped and when he'll be picked up by another student health plan, he's been looking at well over $100K in medical bills for his treatments. In addition to updates about his own condition and the state of Poop Strong, Arijit's been tweeting (naturally) about the state of health insurance, and recently, Aetna got involved. The conversation (as Twitter convos tend to do) sort of spirals out from the main thread between Arijit and Aetna.

That's an understatement! Arijit ended up debating directly with the CEO of Aetna, Mark T. Bertolini. The tl;dr: Aetna, and Mr. Bertolini, agreed in the end to cover the full extent of bills that accrued since Arijit was dropped from insurance (about $118,000).

"The system is broken," said Bertolini. "I really am trying to fix it."

Arijit is redirecting all of the donations he received the University of Arizona Cancer Center Patient Assistance Fund and The Wellness Community (Arizona), to directly assist other people with cancer who cannot pay for the life-saving medical treatments they need.

I spoke with Arijit today, and will be publishing a transcript/audio of our conversation soon. He's a really cool guy, and he has some insights from this experience that I think everyone should hear. It looks like Arijit is covered, for now, but the system is still broken. The debate over health care costs has become a political football—but for people like me and Arijit and everyone else in America who isn't in the 1%, health care costs are literally a matter of life and death. No one should suffer or die because they can't afford medical treatment. It really is that simple.

Arijit's friend Jen Wang created a Storify of the twitter exchange between Arijit, Aetna's PR reps, and Aetna's CEO. You can read this below.

Read the rest

Enthralling Books: Mysteries, by Knut Hamsun

This is one in a series of essays about enthralling books. I asked my friends and colleagues to recommend a book that took over their life. I told them the book didn't have to be a literary masterpiece. The only thing that mattered was that the book captivated them and carried them into the world within its pages, making them ignore the world around them. I asked: "Did you shirk responsibilities so you could read it? Did you call in sick? Did you read it until dawn? That's the book I want you to tell us about!" See all the essays in the Enthralling Book series here. -- Mark

NewImage

Mysteries, by Knut Hamsun

One night in the autumn of 1882, Knut Hamsun's roommate returned home to find a knife, a cigar, and a note laid out on the table for him.

The note read:

Smoke the cigar and stick the knife into my heart.

Do it quickly, decisively and as a friend, if you value my affection.

Signed Knut H.

P.S. This note will be your defense in court.*

Hamsun lay asleep in his bed, underneath an angel of death that he had painted on the ceiling.

What intrigues me about this... prank? is that it somehow manages to come off as both playful and disturbing at the same time. This quality is present in much of Hamsun's early work, particularly in his second novel, the aptly titled Mysteries.

Mysteries doesn't have much in the way of a story. The very first paragraph sums up the plot in a couple dozen words: an eccentric stranger named Johan Nagel shows up in a small Norwegian coastal town, his odd behavior causes a stir, and then he disappears just as suddenly as he came. The writing style is similarly sparse, consisting of brief, straightforward sentences.

But this apparent simplicity conceals a murkier core. I've read Mysteries several times in multiple translations, and it always manages to captivate me. There's so much to chew on: from Nagel's deliberate, self-defeating behavior, to the haunting, visceral anecdotes that he relates to the perplexed townspeople, to all the enticing details and the questions they raise. What's the deal with the vial of poison that Nagel carries around? Who is the veiled woman who visits him halfway through the book? And why is it so important that he be wearing his iron ring when the clock strikes twelve each night?

The title of the book being what it is, it probably won't surprise you to know that most of these questions are left unanswered. But rather than being frustrating, the loose ends are a big part of the book's charm. They linger with me for days after I reach the last page and tempt me to start over from the beginning, so I can be shocked and delighted by Nagel's antics all over again.

*Cigar/knife anecdote adapted from Ingar Sletten Kolloen's Knut Hamsun: Dreamer And Dissenter

Buy Mysteries on Amazon

Olympics 2012 opening ceremony honors Tim Berners-Lee, but NBC anchors don't know who he is

"Tim being Englishman Tim Berners-Lee... if you haven't heard of him, [laugh], we haven't either." — Meredith Vieira, derping out with Matt Lauer during the opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympics.

Meredith, Matt: You guys. You could look it up on the World Wide Web.

Video here, courtesy of Ethan Klapper.

Read the rest

What do you think of the new Apple "genius" ads running during Olympics 2012 TV coverage?

The internets are a-flutter with critics of these new Apple ads. I'm not crazy about them. They feel like they're for Best Buy or something, not Apple. I do wish they'd just bring back John Hodgman. (via @nytjim)

Sick of the Olympics already? Olwimpics browser blocker is your new best friend.

Greg Leuch at fffffat unveils the Olwimpics content blocker for Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. Sweet Jesus, thank you. (via @gautamramdurai)

A message for the media from an Aurora shooting survivor: "Give victims and survivors their space"

"Student, writer, and self-identifying geek" A.J. Focht, writing on a Suicide Girls blog, talks about the experience of surviving the recent mass shooting at "The Dark Knight Rises" premiere at an Aurora, CO movie theater— and, how a friend and fellow survivor was hounded by content-hungry television producers:

With only a small charge left in her phone one of the members of my group thought it best to send out a blanket distress beacon via Twitter so she could conserve her battery to call her parents and a ride home. Caitlin tweeted from her account @dingos8myTARDIS informing her family and friends of the chaos and that she was physically alright. Her tweets were some of the first online, and within the hour BBC, CNN, and others were broadcasting her messages on the news. The hundreds of media outlets that contacted her throughout the night were unexpected, but we could understand they were just trying to do their jobs. Once we had been released, Caitlin, not wanting the mass media attention, released these tweets:

dingos8myTARDIS: To the media: I was tweeting earlier because my phone was on 10%batt & I needed to let people know I was okay. I am (in) no shape for interviews.

dingos8myTARDIS: To rephrase: I have no interest in interviews at this time. I was merely sending an emergency beacon.

Despite her requesting to be left alone, she was perpetually bombarded by yet more media requests via Twitter from outlets including FOX News and The Huffington Post. As if the mass attention on Twitter was not enough, other news networks took it upon themselves to get her phone number and start calling her.

While we all sat anxiously awaiting information on the MIA member of our group, phones and email notifications continued go off till all our phones had died. Before even our families and friends had a chance to check in, the overzealous reporters were all but knocking on our doors. Right after our group finally learned our missing member didn't make it, Caitlin's phone began to ring; It was the Today Show on the other end requesting an interview about him. She told them off and asked them not to contact her again. However, her pleas didn't stop them from calling again the next morning, still trying to get an interview.

Focht is among those who wish that media would "stop showing" images of the suspected killer. There's a balance for news outlets to strike in cases like this; there's informing, and there's exploitation. For the record, we at Boing Boing have refrained from publishing the image, because there's no real need for us to.

Read the rest: "Back Row Perspective Part 1: An Aurora Theater Survivor’s Message to the Media."

There's a second piece, well worth reading, with words for the politicians who seek to capitalize on the massacre.

Mitt Romney Goes to Paris (a poem)

"It’s an honor to be welcomed by the President of France/Who would have been that World Bank guy if he’d kept on his pants"—Jerry Adler's poetic interpretation of presidential candidate Mitt Romney's visit to the capital of France. (via Steven Levy)

Yelp reviews, read by real actors (video)

[Video Link] Chris Kipiniak, who is a working actor, puts all those many years of training and practice to work in a dramatic interpretation of an online restaurant review for the Stratford Diner. This appears to be the first in a series, to which you can subscribe. (video by Joe Plummer; thanks Joe Sabia!)

Caturday (photo)

Muaz Mohamed shot this lovely photo of a kitteh wishing you a happy Caturday, with a high-five paw. Shared in the Boing Boing Flickr pool.

Why one mutation can protect people from HIV

We've talked here before about the importance of the protein CCR5 in HIV/AIDS treatment research. CCR5 is a protein on the surface of immune cells. Some people have a genetic mutation, called Delta-32, which alters how that protein works, how often it appears, or changes its structure. People with the mutation have immunity to some strains of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

CCR5 is the key to the Berlin Patient—Timothy Ray Brown—who, until recently, was the only person to ever be cured of AIDS. Brown received bone marrow transplants from people who had the Delta-32 mutation. His body has been HIV-free for five years. And, last week, researchers announced that two other people successfully received the same treatment.

But here's the thing, until today, I didn't totally understand how the connection between CCR5, Delta-32, and HIV worked. There's a story (and some great digital illustrations) on NPR's Shots blog that makes the situation much more clear. HIV, apparently, have little spikes all over its surface. These spikes are how the virus injects itself into cells.

When it bumps into a T cell, a finger-like projection on the cell's surface, called CCR5, pushes down on the spike. This interaction pops open the HIV and releases the infectious genes into the cell. A gene therapy could protect T cells by inactivating the CCR5 gene.

Great "A-ha!" moment for me. Read the rest of the story and look at the illustrations. It'll make some thing make a lot more sense.

Read the rest at NPR's Shots blog

PREVIOUSLY:
If AIDS Has Been Cured, Why is the Victory Party So Small?
AIDS Research Done by 17-Year-Olds

Gweek 063: Fanboys vs Zombies

Click here to play this episode. Gweek is Boing Boing’s podcast about comic books, science fiction and fantasy, video games, board games, tools, gadgets, apps, and other neat stuff.

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Enthralling Books: The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test

This is one in a series of essays about enthralling books. I asked my friends and colleagues to recommend a book that took over their life. I told them the book didn't have to be a literary masterpiece. The only thing that mattered was that the book captivated them and carried them into the world within its pages, making them ignore the world around them. I asked: "Did you shirk responsibilities so you could read it? Did you call in sick? Did you read it until dawn? That's the book I want you to tell us about!" See all the essays in the Enthralling Book series here. -- Mark

NewImage

The book that most enthralled me -- or at least first enthralled me on the level you're talking about -- was Tom Wolfe's Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. I was in college, on my way to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival to direct my friend Walter Kirn's play "Soft White Kids in Leather," loosely based on Warhol's Factory. Although I had read up on a lot of the New York scene of that era, it wasn't until I found Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test (in the mass-market paperback edition in one of those used book bins) that I realized I had finally found someone who could not only express the experience of the group trip, but could also articulate the dynamics and ideology of the psychedelic commune. (Yes, Kesey and the Dead were the West Coast, tie-dyed counterpart to the black turtleneck culture of Warhol and Leary. But the sense of commitment to higher ideals and convenient forgetting of more day-to-day ethics were common to both scenes.)

Anyway, once I started this one I couldn't stop. This was back when taking a trip to Europe was still a really really big thing, so I had planned to travel from Italy to England to Scotland over a slow week of touring before starting rehearsals in Edinburgh. But I spent most of my time in hotel rooms and cafes just reading this book. Twice.

I don't think anything Wolfe has written really comes close, except maybe some of the essays. The book was my model for Cyberia - a similar foray into a psychedelic culture, where some fictionalizing was required to convey deeper non-fiction truths. I hope there's another psychedelic renaissance of this magnitude in my lifetime, just so I have the chance to write or even just read about it one more time.

Cartoon explains how world's cutest encrypted chat service works

Cryptocat Adventure! from Nadim Kobeissi on Vimeo.

Sean Bonner shared this cute video for Cryptocat, a web-based service that enables secure, encrypted online chatting and file transfer between two parties.

The creator of Cryptocat, a 22-year old named Nadim Kobeissi, says Cryptocat has earned him the dreaded "SSSS" mark of suspicion on his boarding passes. From Wired:

When he flies through the US, he’s generally had the notorious “SSSS” printed on his boarding pass, marking him for searches and interrogations — which Kobeissi says have focused on his development of the chat client.

His SSSS’s can mean hours of waiting, and Kobeissi says he has been searched, questioned, had his bags and even his passport taken away and returned later. But he’s kept his sense of humor about the experience, even joking from the airport on his Twitter account.

Cryptocat

Best Marriage Equality ad ever (video)

[Video Link] A PSA by "Why Marriage Matters (Maine)", featuring Harlan Gardner of Machias, ME along with four generations of his family, talking about what marriage means to him and why it matters to the gay and lesbian people in his life.

"It takes a great deal of bravery to be a lesbian. I am so proud of Katie and Alex," Mr. Gardner says. "Marriage is too precious a thing not to share. This isn't about politics. It's about family, and how we as people treat one another."

Man. Don't know about you, but I sure cried.

(via Steve Silberman)

Chocolate Han Solo in Carbonite Sugar Cookie

Moogieland has a recipe, and photos, for this delightful Star Wars-themed sweet. Snip:

In a galaxy far, far away, I purchased the Han Solo in Carbonite ice cube tray from Think Geek. I knew that I wanted to use it to mold chocolate. But I wanted more than a chocolate bar. And by harnessing the power of the dark side, I added a sugar cookie layer. Yes, Dark Sith Lord, I have cookies. Da da da, dun da-daaa, dun da-daaaa. Now step aside Darth Vader, no using the force to raid the cookie jar!

(via Boing Boing Flickr Pool; photo: Moogieland)

Rich Kids of Instagram: a tumblog of greatness

[richkidsofinstagram.tumblr.com]: Rich Kids Of Instagram. "They have more money than you and this is what they do." (via @mistergif)

US charges citizen with $6,500 fine for visiting Cuba

Zachary Sanders, 38, traveled to Cuba as an unauthorized tourist 14 years ago. He was 23, and had been teaching English in Mexico. He decided to travel to Cuba for a couple of weeks in 1998. "I wanted to learn about how a socialist country worked in practice," Sanders says. "I had no illusions. ... I'm not like some diehard supporter of the (Cuban) government or anything like that." The U.S. Treasury Department penalized him for not having filled out the proper forms, and a long-running legal battle ensued. Today, Sanders reached a settlement with the government: he must pay $6,500 for his mistake.

Happy Sysadmin Day!

A very happy Sysadmin Day to Boing Boing's own Ken Snider (@orenwolf on Twitter), and to all the others who toil in the server room coal mines. Without them, you would not be reading this blog post.

Read the rest

Holding hands with strangers (video)

[Video Link] Andrew Hales of LAHWF ("Losing All Hope Was Freedom", a Fight Club reference) walks around in public trying to get strangers to hold his hand. Below, part two (via Joe Sabia).

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Great moments in science education

And now, let us pay tribute to the 1992 winner of the Ig Nobel Award in the category of Art: Jim Knowlton's informative poster "Penises of the Animal Kingdom". (Bonus: The U.S. National Endowment for the Arts shared the award with Mr. Knowlton, for suggesting that he continue his work in pop-up book form.) (Via Josh Rosenau)

Eagle Scouts make a Tumblr for protest letters

Earlier this week, I posted a couple batches of letters from grown-up Eagle Scouts who chose to resign their hard-earned, elite awards in protest of the Boy Scouts of America's policy banning gay and atheist scouts and troop leaders.

I'm still getting letters in the mail. These things are coming in faster than I can update the posts. Which is why I'm very glad that several former Eagle Scouts have taken matters into their own hands, starting a Tumblr that can play host to all these letters, and all the ones going forward.

Burke Stansbury put the site together. In his own resignation letter, he wrote:

I am not proud to be affiliated with an organization that excludes people based on their sexuality. Many of my closest friends are gay, lesbian, or transgender and it pains me to think that I invested time in an organization that prohibits their membership. It's a shameful, bigoted policy. Plain and simple.

I'll be contacting people who have sent me letters recently about whether it's okay to forward their emails to Burke. And if you'd like your letter to be archived on the Tumblr, there's an easy-to-use submission form right on the site.

Eagle Scouts Returning Our Badges on Tumblr

PREVIOUSLY:
Eagle Scouts Stand Up To the Boy Scouts of America
More Men Join the Ranks of Former Eagle Scout