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Tickets from the Studio Ghibli museum are made from snips of film

Tickets at the Studio Ghibli museum near Tokyo are made from snips of actual film from Miyazaki movies. This ticket shows Satsuki from the masterpiece My Neighbor Totoro.

I went to (Miyazaki) Studio Ghibli Museum near Tokyo, Japan. The tickets are made up of cut up film cells. My ticket is from Princess Mononoke.

See also: A visit to Spirited Away creator's museum in Japan

Gigeresque corset: "Spine"

Spine, an amazing, gigeresque corset, is a Shaun Leane design that was displayed at NY MOMA in the 2011 show Alexander McQueen show Savage Beauty.

Shaun Leane: He was always fascinated by the spine. So he asked me to create a corset, which was the spine with the rib cage, so that the girl could actually wear this as a corset on the outside of her body, so we would see the beauty of these bone structures on the outside, attached to the dress.

And as we were doing it, Alexander came to me and said, “Will you put a tail on this?” And where he got that idea was out of the film The Omen. When the mother of the omen was discovered—her skeleton—she was half-raven and half-dog, and he was quite inspired by this.

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty | The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (via Kadrey)

Watch the latest video posts in the Boing Boing video archive

We've gathered fresh video for you to surf and enjoy on the Boing Boing video page. The latest finds for your viewing pleasure include:

• Video about man who makes ships in bottles.
• Watch all six Star Wars movies at once.
• Luna Lee performs Jimi Hendrix's "Voodoo Chile" on a gayageum.
• IRS apologizes for $60k Star Trek parody.
• Eating a wedding cake in reverse.
• The art and science of beer: a video feature on the "Pope of Foam."
• Human bodies mercilessly jiggled by gravity at 2000fps [NSFW].

Boing Boing: Video!

Trippy mandala optical illusions

Here's a great optical illusion (click above to see the animation) -- when you blink fast, beautiful mandalas emerge.

Blink Fast (Thanks, Fipi Lele!)

Video about man who makes ships in bottles

Ray Gascoigne is a former shipwright. Well, he's still a shipwright but now the ships he builds fit inside bottles.

Radiohead in the late 1980s


Yep, that's Thom Yorke, Phil Selway, Ed O'Brien, and Colin Greenwood in the late 1980s. Back then Johnny Greenwood wasn't yet in the band who were still called On A Friday. This photo turned up during research for a documentary Anyone Can Play Guitar, about the Oxford, England music scene that also spawned Supergrass, Swervedriver, Foals, and others.

15 Dangerously Mad Projects for the Evil Genius

A few months ago I had a blast playing with Simon Monk's 30 Arduino Projects for the Evil Genius, and noticed that his 15 Dangerously Mad Projects included a coil gun. I've always wanted to make a coil gun!

Since the coil is wrapped around the tube from a plastic pen, and the iron projectile is inside the tube, it will fly along towards the coil. As all the energy from the capacitors will be spent in a matter of milliseconds, the coil should ideally be turned off by the time the projectile passes its center and exits out the other side of the tube.

Simon's plans and walk-through are wonderful. I learned a lot reading the detailed but easy to understand instructions. He also selects parts and components that I am sure I can source locally and I love that he improvised brackets from a plastic drinking bottle.

I also learned that I will not be making a coil gun. That curiosity is now satisfied!

Simon Monk's 15 Dangerously Mad Projects for the Evil Genius

Petition: force Congress to display logos of their corporate backers on their clothes

The idea of forcing Congresscritters to wear NASCAR-style coveralls with the logos of their financial backers has been bandied about before, but here it is in official White House petition form.

Since most politicians' campaigns are largely funded by wealthy companies and individuals, it would give voters a better sense of who the candidate they are voting for is actually representing if the company's logo, or individual's name, was prominently displayed upon the candidate's clothing at all public appearances and campaign events. Once elected, the candidate would be required to continue to wear those "sponsor's" names during all official duties and visits to constituents. The size of a logo or name would vary with the size of a donation. For example, a $1 million dollar contribution would warrant a patch of about 4" by 8" on the chest, while a free meal from a lobbyist would be represented by a quarter-sized button. Individual donations under $1000 are exempt.

As funny as this is, it would be easy-ish to turn this into a browser plugin that looked for politicians' names in the pages you looked at, and automatically surrounded them with a semi-opaque halo of corporate logos that you could click on to see more.

Require Congressmen & Senators to wear logos of their financial backers on their clothing, much like NASCAR drivers do. (via Beyond the Beyond)

(Image: Bobby Labonte, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from mulsanne's photostream)

Venn Diagram of Irrational Nonsense: chart of woo

Sometimes, when confronted with woo, it is hard to know exactly what sort of woo you're dealing with. To simplify this challenge while sparing you the agony of enduring any more explanations of ear-candling or aromatherapy than is strictly necessary, Crispian Jago has compiled a handy Venn Diagram of Irrational Nonsense.

The curiously revered world of irrational nonsense has seeped into almost every aspect of modern society and is both complex and multifarious. Therefore rather than attempt a comprehensive taxonomy, I have opted instead for a gross oversimplification and a rather pretty Venn Diagram.

In my gross over simplification the vast majority of the multitude of evidenced-free beliefs at large in the world can be crudely classified into four basic sets or bollocks. Namely, Religion, Quackery, Pseudoscience and the Paranormal.

However as such nonsensical beliefs continue to evolve they become more and more fanciful and eventually creep across the bollock borders. Although all the items depicted on the diagram are completely bereft of any form of scientific credibility, those that successfully intersect the sets achieve new heights of implausibility and ridiculousness. And there is one belief so completely ludicrous it successfully flirts with all forms of bollocks.

Religious Bollocks ∩ Quackery Bollocks ∩ Pseudoscientific Bollocks ∩ Paranormal Bollocks = Scientology

The Venn Diagram of Irrational Nonsense (Thanks, Fipi Lele!)

Steve Jobs Manga

Posted online is a preview of the first installment of Manga Taishō and Mari Yamazaki's manga bio of Steve Jobs.

Climate answers sought in supercomputers

Carl Franzen, for The Verge:
There's a dark cloud hanging over the science of climate change, quite literally. Scientists today have access to supercomputers capable of running advanced simulations of Earth's climate hundreds of years into the future, accounting for millions of tiny variables. But even with all that equipment and training, they still can't quite figure out how clouds work.

Space bubble

Canadian Space Agency astronaut and flight engineer Chris Hadfield watches a water bubble float freely between him and the camera in the Unity node of the International Space Station. Hadfield became the first Canadian commander of the International Space Station on March 13. [NASA]


"Frankenbumper," a photo by Timothy Krause shared in the BB Flickr Pool.

Watch all six Star Wars movies at once

In the interest of time, you can view all six Star Wars films at once. (via Dangerous Minds)

Why government-funded duck penis research is a good thing

Apparently, some segments of the media are just catching up to The Great Duck Penis Meme of 2007 and the video-enhanced version from 2009. If you've somehow managed to erase this from your memory (and lucky you), it turns out that duck penises are pretty freaky looking and can teach us a lot about how evolution works. Like a lot of basic research — the stuff that isn't directly about creating new products — duck penis studies have been funded by federal science grants. And this has put science writer Carl Zimmer in the awkward position of sticking up for duck erections. In a great piece at The Loom, he explains why silly-sounding research matters and why duck penises are not a waste of your tax dollars.

Return to Antikythera

The Antikythera shipwreck — source of the famous ancient clockwork Antikythera Mechanism — has remained shockingly unexplored in the 100 years or so that we've known about it. In fact, other than a visit by Jacques Cousteau in 1970s, there hadn't been any official, scientific excavations until last year. Turns out, there's a lot of stuff left to find at the site, from a ship's anchor and storage jars to a collection of bronze fragments — which could either turn out to be something mundane, like nails from the boat, or more clues to the Mechanism. According to The Guardian's Jo Marchant, "little bronze fragments" describes what the gears of the Antikythera Mechanism looked like before they were detached from rock and cleaned of rust.

Knife in man's back for 3 years

NewImageBilly McNeely of Canada's Northwest Territories was scratching his back when he noticed a pointy protrusion. Turned out to be the tip of a 7.5cm knife blade that was stuck in his back. For three years. Back in 2010, McNeely was stabbed in a brawl following an arm wrestling match. Since then, his back set off prison metal detectors and he's had pain, but he claims that physicians told him it was nerve damage caused by the injury. From BBC News:
But this week, McNeely, 32, was scratching his back as usual when his fingernail caught on something. His girlfriend took a look.

"I told Billy: 'There's a knife sticking out of your back.' I was scared. I was ready to pull it out with tweezers," Stephanie Sayine told CBC News.

McNeely is considering whether to file a lawsuit against the local health department.

"Knife taken from Billy McNeely's back after three years"

Guatemala: Day 5 of Montt genocide trial; "They viewed us as if we were not people."

Photo: From the Facebook page for Pamela Yates' film "Granito," a snapshot of a female Ixil Maya witness giving testimony on the genocide trial's third day.

The genocide trial of former Guatemalan dictator Efraín Rios Montt, the Army general who ruled Guatemala from 1982 to 1983, and his chief of military intelligence Jose Mauricio Rodriguez Sanchez, continues for the 5th day today in Guatemala City. Today marks the beginning of the second week of hearings; dozens of Ixil Maya witnesses have provided testimony of the atrocities committed against their families. This week is Semana Santa, or Holy Week, so this week's hearings will be truncated in observance of that holiday (it's kind of a big deal in Guatemala). But the trial continues at high speed: seven people testified today before the court broke for lunch.

Watch live video from the courtroom here; listen to audio here. A Twitter list with accounts who are live-tweeting the trial is here.

It is difficult to listen, watch, or read the proceedings. As I publish this blog post, Rosa Santiago, the first female witness to testify today, is asked to speak about a massacre that took place on April 3, 1982 in her village of Xel, Chajul, Quiche. "The soldiers forced 96 people into the village church and hacked them to death with machetes; the soldiers later tossed their dismembered body parts under a bridge."

Ms. Santiago's father and her twin sisters, who were around 8 years old at the time, were among those killed. "Babies were killed because their mothers were carrying them; all the corpses were tossed into two great holes dug in the ground; bodies piled one on top of the other."

Read the rest


The Harvard Business Review has an interesting look at what has happened as TED Talks has expanded to ever-wider audiences and (in doing so) has lost control of its own brand. It's also an excellent object lesson in why slapping the TED logo on something doesn't make it true.

How to: Demolish a truss bridge

Like the people cheering at about :25 into this video, I'm a sucker for dramatic explosions. This one comes from Texas, where the transportation department blew up an old bridge in the city of Marble Falls on March 17th. Also, apparently, it's warm enough in Texas that multiple gentlemen could watch a bridge explode from the comfort of their jet skis.

Disease superspreaders and the new coronavirus

Coronavirus — characterized by the halo of protein spikes that surround each individual virus particle — is the family that gave birth to SARS. Today, there's a new coronavirus stalking humans, especially in the Middle East. Scientists have documented 16 infections, and 10 fatalities. The good news is that there are probably lots of non-serious infections that aren't being reported, meaning the fatality rate probably isn't as high as it looks. Also, this coronavirus seems to have trouble spreading from person to person. But, in regards to that last factor, it's important to pay attention to a detail from the SARS outbreak that we still don't totally understand. Turns out, a handful of people were responsible for most of those infections. The Canadian Press' Helen Branswell writes about superspreaders and the scientists trying to understand how individuals can alter the course of an outbreak. (BTW: If you don't follow Helen Branswell on Twitter, you're missing some of the best infectious disease reporting out there.)

The sinking of the Veggietanic, and an Octopus Googly-Eye Banana

"Veggietanic, a photo shared in the BB Flickr Pool by BB reader Domenic Bahmann (instagram, Twitter, Tumblr). Oh, hey, and he's selling an "Octopus Banana" print. Just look at it.

Read the rest

Jimi Hendrix on a gayageum

Luna Lee performs Jimi Hendrix's "Voodoo Chile" on a gayageum, a "traditional Korean zither-like string instrument" (Wikipedia). She freaking nails it. There's lots more if that strikes your fancy.

Voodoo Chile-Jimi Hendrix / Gayageum ver. by Luna (via Reddit)

Veil of secrecy around Manning case makes a public trial "a state secret in plain sight"

New York Times media columnist David Carr has a piece out today about how reporters covering the pretrial hearings for Pfc. Bradley Manning over the past year have encountered roadblocks in accessing even the most basic information. Even such routine items as "dockets of court activity and transcripts of the proceedings" have been withheld by the government.

"A public trial over state secrets was itself becoming a state secret in plain sight," Carr writes.

Read the rest

Around the World in 80 Cakes

Cakewrecks has a fun photo gallery of cakes inspired by Jules Verne's "Around the World in 80 Days."

Generative music apps


At our sponsor Intel's LifeScoop site, I posted about "Music That Writes Itself":

In ambient music pioneer Brian Eno’s 1996 book A Year with Swollen Appendices, the composer wrote, “I really think it is possible that our grandchildren will look at us in wonder and say: ‘you mean you used to listen to exactly the same thing over and over again?’” Eno was talking about generative music, a process by which a computer creates unique works from fixed parameters set by the artist. In its simplest form, you twist a few knobs (virtual or otherwise) and the computer takes it from there, creating music that can be credited to the system itself. The term generative art is most likely derived from “generative grammar,” a linguistic theory Noam Chomsky first proposed in his book Syntactic Structures (1965) to refer to deep-seated rules that describe any language. Steven Holtzman, author of Digital Mosaics (1997), traces the art form to the dawn of the information age in the 1960s, when musicians like Gottfried Michael Koenig and Iannis Xenakis pioneered computer composition. Decades later, a number of generative music apps are bringing Eno’s vision to our smartphones.
"Music That Writes Itself"

The case of the poison potato

The Lenape potato, developed in the 1960s for the snack business, made a damn fine potato chip. Unfortunately, it was also kind of toxic.

Read the rest

Hong Kong: court denies migrant domestic workers residency

The top court in Hong Kong has ruled that domestic workers may not apply for permanent residency. The case has been fought for two years. The outcome affects some 300,000 domestic workers, mostly from the Philippines and Indonesia, who may spend decades of their lives working in the territory. [BBC News/Thanks Antinous]

Uber unfairly skimming our tips, say some drivers

Mother Jones has an item today on complaints by drivers for "hail a black car/taxi/SUV with your smartphone" company Uber: the company website claims your fare includes a 20% gratuity "for the driver," but one driver told MoJo's Josh Harkinson that "half of that gratuity actually goes to Uber." And if that's true, "the company would be misleading consumers and breaking the law in some cities."

NY Mag feature on epic NBC "Today" Lauer/Curry cold war is backstab-o-licious

Joe Hagan's New York Magazine feature on the bitter internal conflict behind the smiles of NBC's long-running Today show is a wonderful read, whether or not you give a shit about Today, or network daytime television in general.

I don't want to spoil it for you, but that 9th graf down from the top is the ultimate "oh snap!" of media gossip writing.

The piece is full of interesting dirt about Ann Curry, Matt Lauer, and the suits that run NBC, including this little nugget about the network's cockblocking of a compassionate gesture for a woman with cancer at a rival network:

"When Robin Roberts left Good Morning America a month later to get treatment for MDS, Curry asked NBC if she could tweet a note of sympathy for the ABC co-host. NBC said no, afraid she was trying to aid the enemy."

(Photo: Gillian Laub/NY Magazine)