Artist Jay Lynch, of Garbage Pail Kids fame, dead at 72

Underground comix cartoonist Jay Lynch, perhaps best known for Bijou Funnies and his contributions to the Garbage Pail Kids trading card series, died March 5, reports the New York Times..

“Underground comix were the most important art movement of the 20th century,” he wrote, using the “comics” spelling preferred by underground cartoonists, in the introduction to “Underground Classics: The Transformation of Comics Into Comix” (2009), by Denis Kitchen and James Danky. “Copies of many of the early books sell to collectors for many thousands of dollars,” he continued. “It’s all quite ironic: Rebellious cartoonists mocking consumer culture were inadvertently producing collectible artifacts for the same consumer culture 40 years down the road.”

And I do believe that's his art on the 30th Anniversary Box set. Alex Balk wrote a commemorative poem and it's perfect. John Pound is still with us. Read the rest

Mimas in Saturnlight

Today's Astronomy picture of the day is Saturn's moon, Mimas, bathed in light from both the planet and the sun. The image has had the darker side brightened somewhat; click through for the unenhanced original.

Explanation: Peering from the shadows, the Saturn-facing hemisphere of Mimas lies in near darkness alongside a dramatic sunlit crescent. The mosaic was captured near the Cassini spacecraft's final close approach on January 30, 2017. Cassini's camera was pointed in a nearly sunward direction only 45,000 kilometers from Mimas. The result is one of the highest resolution views of the icy, crater-pocked, 400 kilometer diameter moon. ... Other Cassini images of Mimas include the small moon's large and ominous Herschel Crater.

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Martin Shkreli buying domain names of people who write about him

Former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli became famous for hitting AIDS patients with a price hike in a life-saving drug—and then for the fraud charges for which he awaits his day in court. But he's also a bit of an odd duck, eating shit on campus and getting kicked off Twitter for harassment. Now he's been noticed snapping up web domains that include critics' and enemies' names.

Maxwell Tani at Business Insider:

Over the past five months, Shkreli has purchased domains associated with writers from Vice, Vanity Fair, AOL, Bloomberg, Dealbreaker, and Gizmodo, along with others associated with other individuals critical of Shkreli on social media.

Shkreli didn't appear to be too happy when Noisey reporter Phil Witmer published a story ... "Can I buy philwitmer.com right now? Yes I can, and yes I will," he said to whoever was watching his livestream. ...

In the weeks after Shkreli's Twitter account was suspended in January for harassing Teen Vogue writer Lauren Duca, the former exec started buying up domain names for journalists, snagging "marrymelauren.com" on the day he was suspended.

Martin Shkreli keeps buying up the personal domain names of journalists who write about him [BI] Read the rest

Woman escapes kidnapper by leaping out of the trunk of his moving car

A woman in Avondale, Alabama, was recorded on a gas station's security cameras leaping from a moving car to escape a man who had kidnapped her and stuffed her in the trunk.

According to Sgt. Bryan Shelton, the 25-year-old victim was taken by a suspect outside of her apartment on 4th Avenue South and 38th Street in Birmingham's Avondale neighborhood around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday. Police said the suspect pointed a gun at her and demanded money.

When the victim said she didn't have any money, the suspect forced her into her black Nissan Altima. Later, he made her move to the trunk of the car.

Shelton said the suspect took her cell phone and wallet.

The victim was then taken to Gas Land on Bessemer Road at approximately 11:40 p.m., where the suspect entered the gas station and tried to withdraw cash from the ATM.

Perhaps she had found the escape latch found in most (all?) modern vehicles' trunks; she ran inside and grabbed the clerk's shotgun while he stood guard at the door and called the cops. Read the rest

Amtrak vs snow, in slow-mo

An Amtrak train pulls into a station somewhere up east. The only problem? The tracks are already occupied by snow, piled a good six inches higher than the platform itself. Commuter Nick Colvin knows what's about to happen and has his iPhone set to record slow-mo footage, but as he writes, there was "a more spectacular arrival than expected." Read the rest

Mr Bean recut to be a creepy thriller

"Mean Bean" isn't coming to theaters this summer, but it might be coming to your nightmares tonight. John Loberger's recut of Rowan Atkinson's "great TV, ghastly movie" classic becomes genuinely terrifying when you're invited to take his antics seriously.

Previously: 50 Shades of Bean. Read the rest

The American school of firearms instruction

STUDENT Did you mean to do that?

INSTRUCTOR

(thinks about it) Yeah.

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Angry ram battles tetherball left in forest

The best part is the other sheep patiently waiting further up the path.

"Come on, Nigel." Read the rest

Futuracha Pro, a font that "evolves" as you type

Futuracha Pro is a typeface designed to take excessive advantage of alternatives, ligatures and other features of modern fonts, so much so that as you type, the words evolve into striking, but consistent new forms.[via Bored Panda]

Futuracha Pro is an Open Type Font, which magically adjusts and readjusts as you write. Its quirkiness and eccentricity are the two main features that made it one of the most beloved fonts in the whole world. Until today, nobody was able to just sit down and type with it. Featuring various combinations of letters and plenty of playful ligatures, Futuracha Pro gives creative people the opportunity to actually type and create, making their ideas extraordinary and unique!

Currently available as an elaborate nest of EPS files, a proper font's been in the works for years. You can preorder it for $50, but it's still cooking and will not be available until May.

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Rachel Maddow has 2005 Trump tax return; White House publishes details in advance of her show

President Trump refused to release his tax returns during the election campaign despite promising to do so, raising suspicion that anything from embarrassing business failures to compromising foreign debts could be revealed in them. MSNBC host Rachel Maddow tweeted that she's received Trump tax returns from 2005.

That'd be personal federal taxes. She'll be presenting the details at 9pm EST on her show. Any bets on what they contain?

UPDATE: The White House released information Trump's 2005 taxes to pre-empt the show.

Trump reported $150 million in income and $38 million paid in taxes, according to a statement from the White House. ...

The White House said Trump had a responsibility "to pay no more tax than legally required."

"Before being elected President, Mr. Trump was one of the most successful businessmen in the world with a responsibility to his company, his family and his employees to pya no more tax than legally required," the White House said.

Does he really think he gained anything be pre-empting her by minutes? It just shows there's no impediment at all to him releasing his taxes. Read the rest

Man gets off London Underground train, runs to the next stop before the train gets there

London, city of slow trains and fleet foxes. [Via Pepo Jiménez] Read the rest

Maker of internet-connected vibrator must pay $4m for secretly tracking users' sexual activity

We-Vibe agreed to pay up to $10,000 each to customers after tracking use of their "smart vibrators" without permission. The total hit is for $4m.

The We-Vibe 4 Plus is a £90 bluetooth connected vibrator, which can be controlled through an app. It is marketed as a way to “allow couples to keep their flame ignited – together or apart”. Its app-enabled controls can be activated remotely, allowing, for instance, a partner on the other end of a video call to interact. But the app came with a number of security and privacy vulnerabilities, which added up to produce something that many would feel uncomfortable about using.

They sold people on "control a vibrator with your phone" but the reality was "we build a data graph of your sexual habits." Read the rest

Minimalist web publishing platforms

Check out txt.fyi, a toy "publishing platform" I made. I put that phrase in quotes because it's designed to be as lightweight as possible: you type in text and hit publish, and your work is live on the internet. From the "about" page:

This is the dumbest publishing platform on the web. ... There's no tracking, ad-tech, webfonts, analytics, javascript, cookies, databases, user accounts, comments, friending, likes, follower counts or other quantifiers of social capital. The only practical way for anyone to find out about a posting is if the author links to it elsewhere.

But it is legible, no-nonsense static hypertext, good for short stories, not-short-enough tweets and adventures and all your numbers station or internet dead drop needs. Here you can scream into the void and know the form of your voice is out there forever.

Search engines are instructed not to index posts and I'll do my best to make sure this isn't used as a tool by spammers or other abusers. Nonetheless, posting will be turned off if anything bad grows out of it.

Use Dumbdown to format posts: #header, **bold**, *italic*, `code`, quote, and hyperlinks in the format [link](http://example.com). Try !hacker and !professor and !timestamp too. ...

Long live the independent web!

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A fairy tale in Midi pattern art

You've seen Midi pattern art before, but this one tells a story! Composer and artist Mari Lesteberg writes:

A longer MIDI Drawing this time - a little girl who lives in the woods, and what she finds when she enters a dark cave... :) Hope you like the music/story. Both the music and the design is inspired by old school RPG-games.
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Alex Jones not bragging about things

Media Matters presents a supercut of Alex Jones not bragging about things. Read the rest

Someone asked every member of Ireland's parliament what their favorite Beyoncé song was

Amy O'Connor asked every member of the Dáil Éireann the following questions:

Do you like Beyoncé? If you answered YES, what is your favourite Beyoncé song? If you answered NO, why don’t you like Beyoncé?

Thirty-seven of the 158-member parliament responded. John Brassil, representing Kerry for the Fianna Fáil party, is a big fan: "Hi Amy what a pleasant questionnaire of course I like Beyoncé my favourite song is Halo." But Sinn Féin's Pat Buckley has reservations: "I’d like her a lot better if she paid the Sri Lanka women who sew her clothing line a decent wage while she enjoys a personal wealth of over a quarter of a billion dollars." His party mate Jonathan O’Brien, though, is swayed: "I am republican, but Beyoncé is the only queen I have time for." Read the rest

Trump administration walks back Obama wiretapping claim

In a press conference, Donald Trump spokesman Sean Spicer walked back the president's tweeted claims that former president Barack Obama had wiretapped Trump Tower during the 2016 election campaign. By "wire tapping" Trump just meant "surveillance and other activities", and by "President Obama" and "a bad (or sick) guy" he was referring the entirety of the administration, not to Obama personally.

Namely, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Trump wasn't referring to wiretapping when he tweeted about wiretapping. "I think there's no question that the Obama administration, that there were actions about surveillance and other activities that occurred in the 2016 election," Spicer said. "The President used the word wiretaps in quotes to mean, broadly, surveillance and other activities." ...

Spicer also said that Trump was referring to the Obama administration broadly -- and not accusing Obama of personal involvement -- when he tweeted that "Obama had my 'wires tapped' in Trump Tower" and accused Obama of being a "bad" or "sick guy."

Decide for yourself!

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