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Sugru hits B&Q

Congrats to Sugru, the wonderful, maker-ish polymer fix-it clay, on the news that it's been picked up for distribution at 300 B&Q stores across the UK! Cory

Dove sneaks revert-to-original Photoshop plugin into art directors' toolkits

Alan sez, "The makers of Dove have taken their 'Real Beauty' campaign against P-shopped models into the realm of hacktivism. As the video explains, they sneaked out a Photoshop plug-in (called an Action) that supposedly added a fake skin glow but in fact restored the initial appearance of a model prior to the usual sort of Photoshoppification."

Dove: Thought Before Action

Politely refusing to talk to DHS checkpoints

Hugh sez, "Apparently DHS checkpoints nowhere near the border are a new thing. This video cuts together recordings of such encounters and citizens' polite refusal to answer questions."

Top quote: "Am I being detained?"

Checkpoints (some would say illegal checkpoints) have been popping up quite frequently in the USA. As you see in this video, you DO NOT have to comply with their question's or demands. Don't forget, you have rights.

Top DHS checkpoint refusals (Thanks, Hugh!)

Vortex smoke rings created with 3D printed wings

Dustin Kleckner sez, "Scientists tie vortex rings (smoke rings, basically) into knots using 3D printed wings. Includes high speed video, also in 3D. In addition to being very cool, they are also related to knots and braids that appear in places like the sun's surface. Full disclosure: I'm one of the scientists that did the research."

The duo overcame their experimental difficulties by designing and fabricating various hydrofoils (wings used in water) on a 3-D printer. They tried approximately 30 different shapes before they successfully created the desired vortices. When accelerated in a water tank at more than 100 g, hydrofoils leave behind bubble-traced vortex loops, whose dynamics the researchers recorded with a high-speed camera.

“The bubbles are a great trick because they allow you to see the core of the vortex very clearly,” Irvine said.

Vortex loops could untie knotty physics problems [U Chicago Press Release]

Creation and dynamics of knotted vortices [Nature]

Richard Sherman and lucky disnephile sing "Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow"

It's the 50th anniversary of "There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow," the theme from they Disney Carousel of Progress (which debuted at the 1964 World's Fair in NYC). Keith met Richard Sherman, part of the Sherman brothers songwriting team responsible for the song.

He sez, "Last month I had the great pleasure of singing 'There's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow' with Richard Sherman at his home. After we were done singing, he said to me, 'That's the first time I did that since Walt and my brother.' And yep, I filmed it! Coolest moment of my life. Wanted to share it with the whole world, basically."

There’s a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow 50th Anniversary (Thanks, Keith!)

Unicorn wigs


Etsy seller GimmCat makes multihued wigs with integrated unicorn horns (tails and assorted ponyana as well): "This sale is for the mischievous Snips style My Little Pony costume wig for cosplay, fantasy costumes, conventions, raves, Renaissance festivals, Brony costume or just because! This wig is especially suited for males wishing to take part in the My Little Pony fun!"

GimmCat (via Geekologie)

Houses carved out of blocks of books


"Built of Books" is a series of sculptures from Dutch artist Frank Halmans -- houses carved out of blocks of stuck-together books.

dutch artist frank halmans explores themes of domesticity and memory through his sculptural installations. his series 'built of books' employs vintage publications - the selected titles have no particular meaning and are not exceptional literary works - which he arranges into stacks. lining them up along shelves, he carving windows and doors through each, creating sets of imaginary buildings and interiors in each section of volumes. in a way these spaces which he slices through the books, stand as a metaphor and the idea of moving through something, whether it be a literary passage, or a physical expanse.

built of books [Andrea/Designboom]

(via Neatorama)

Petition demands an end to drone surveillance

Marc from the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) sez, "The Electronic Privacy Information Center has published a petition to the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection, demanding the suspension of the drone program pending the development of privacy regulations for the use of drones in US airspace. Documents recently obtained by EPIC under the Freedom of Information Act indicate that the drones are equipped with technology for signals interception and human identification. The agency currently operates ten Predator B drones along the border region, an area that encompasses more than two-thirds of the U.S. population. EPIC is urging individuals and organizations to Sign the Petition before March 18. Under federal law, the agency is required to respond to public petitions." Cory

Machine of Death: the game -- blazing Kickstarter success looking working toward awesome stretch goals

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1234131468/machine-of-death-the-game-of-creative-assassinatio

David Wondermark" Malki ! sez, "We've taken the Machine of Death concept [ed: a wildly successful independent anthology of stories about a world where a machine can accurately forecast your date of death] and adapted it into a pretty wacky party game. You play assassins who know their target's death prediction in advance, and have to come up with creative ways of making it come true. It's a storytelling game that's kind of like Rube Goldberg meets a Roadrunner cartoon meets MURDER. We've already blown past our Kickstarter goal and are now fundraising to add more and more cool stretch goal cards by webcomics artists! We also have some handmade laser-cut deluxe game boxes that'll only be available during the Kickstarter. We've been thrilled by the response to the game so far and are really excited to see it become a reality!"

Machine of Death: The Game of Creative Assassination (Thanks, David!)

Gweek 084: Carrie Brownstein

This morning David and I spoke with with Carrie Brownstein: musician, writer, actor. She's a founding member of the bands Sleater-Kinney and Wild Flag, and the co-creator, co-writer, and co-star of Portlandia, the hit sketch comedy series on IFC, currently in its 3rd season.


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Previously:

Portlandia: A Guide for Visitors

Portlandia: Artisanal popcorn

Portlandia just keeps getting better

Portlandia holiday preview video: "Vagina Pillows"

SPOILER ALERT: New Portlandia preview clip is called "Spoiler Alert"

(Image of Carrie Brownstein: Wildflag - SXSW Music 2011 - Austin, TX, a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike (2.0) image from kk's photostream)

(Thanks, Rachel Maguire!)

Patter for magicians: 1945


A few excerpts from Harry Stanley's 1945 book The Gag Bag, which features suggested patter for would-be magicians:

Of course, I never dare let my people know I was a magician. It would shock them. They think I'm still in prison.

I used to be a wallflower, until I took up magic. Now everybody asks me out. The other night at a show, I had only done one trick, and I was asked out.

There are only two kinds of conjurer you can't trust – the ones with moustaches and the clean-shaven ones.

He is a magician. His brother doesn't work either.

[Spoonerist patter] – 'my next disaster piece' (masterpiece) 'my next misery' (mystery) 'I will now utter the tragic words' (magic words.)

Public house catches fire... 50 magicians homeless.

Will someone call out any number between 16 and 60? Thank you I only wanted to find out if anyone was still awake.

Magician's 'Patter' (Thanks, Nigel!)

Rapefruit: it's "good for every meal"

From the Mankato Free Press, of Minnesota. Oops. [Romenesko]

A boast

My latest novel Homeland just hit the New York Times bestseller list for the fourth week running. That is all. Cory

Holder: US may use drones to kill US citizens on US soil but only bad people so don't worry

Attorney General Eric Holder won't rule out a scenario in which a drone strike could be ordered against American citizens on domestic soil, but says it has never been done previously and he could only see it being considered in an extraordinary circumstance, reports CNN, so guys, don't worry about it, everything's gonna be fine. [CNN.com] Xeni

Readings from Mauna Loa show increased greenhouse gas emissions

Bad news for all inhabitants of the planet from which you're reading this blog post: data gathered by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration at Mauna Loa, Hawaii, show that the amount of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the air spiked in 2012, "making it very unlikely that global warming can be limited to another 2 degrees as many global leaders have hoped." The CO2 increase "reflects the world's economy revving up and burning more fossil fuels, especially in China." [Honolulu Star-Advertiser] Xeni