277 bodies found under UK tram line


Experts knew there was a graveyard under Manchester's Metrolink tramline, but the sheer scale of the excavation—277 unearthed bodies—has made news worldwide.

The archeological dig is a prelude to development work to Manchester's transit system, and covers generations of burials in England's third-largest city. Church officials say they are pleased with the sensitivity shown by the project, and that the remains will be relocated.

Even so, the bone haul is nothing on the 3,000-corpse plague pit excavated during similar work in London earlier this year. Read the rest

Unsettling notice warns passers-by of forthcoming immortalization


Via Imgur; redditor bloominhell reports that it's the work of Glasgow artist David Shrigley. Previously. Read the rest

Cops kick in wrong door, kill wrong man


An unarmed North Carolina man was shot dead this weekend by Sheriff’s deputies in Harnett County, who reportedly kicked in his door after misidentifying his home as that of a suspect in another crime.

WNCN reports that John Livingston, 33, was shot several times during the incident. Few answers are forthcoming on the circumstances.

[room-mate] Carroll says sheriff’s deputies knocked on their door around 3:30 a.m.

Carroll said they were looking for someone that no longer lived there. When deputies asked Livingston if they could search the trailer, Livingston said “not without a search warrant,” according to Carroll.

Livingston then closed the door.

“The cop kicked in the door, got on top of him, started slinging him around beat him…” Carroll said.

The officers involved are on administrative leave, but their identities have not been released, according to ABC news. One of the deputies received minor injuries, but they were not specified. Read the rest

Ireland legalizes same-sex marriage


Eire we go, at last! The BBC reports that the Republic of Ireland will now permit same-sex couples to wed.

It is not yet known when and where the first same-sex wedding will be held.

But the first people to be affected are same-sex couples who have already wed legally abroad. Their marriages are now automatically recognised by the state.

They include Orla Howard and her wife Dr Grainne Courtney, who were married in the United States in May 2013.

The new rules follow a referendum in May in which Irish voters overwhelmingly supported the change.

Ireland was late to the gay rights party, only decriminalizing homosexual acts in 1993. But now it is the first country to legalize same-sex marriage by popular vote.

This leaves Northern Ireland as the last holdout in the Atlantic Archipelagos1; though about 70% of locals support same-sex marriage, conservative protestants in government have apparently used procedural measures to prevent the law being voted upon.

1. Various wee UK tax shelters have yet to permit same-sex weddings, but all have signaled their legislative commitment to marriage equality. Read the rest

Zombie Flowers: animation inspired by Darwin's carnivorous plants

creepy flowers

Charles Darwin´s first impressions, when he first saw a carnivorous plant in 1875, were the inspiration for this 1-minute animated video by Francisco Sanchez de Cañete.

I’m a spanish berlin based Art Director and 3D artist. I started exploring digital media after my degree in Fine Arts and since then I haven’t stopped dedicating myself to it.

Read the rest

Ads could use ultrasound to secretly link your gadgets


Researchers are warning that ads could play coded sounds outside the range of human hearing to secretly communicate with other gadgets within earshot.

The technique, which several companies are reportedly working on, would allow marketers to associate devices with one another and paint a privacy-cracking picture of the owner's interests and behaviors.

Dan Goodin reports that cross-device tracking is already in use:

Cross-device tracking raises important privacy concerns, the Center for Democracy and Technology wrote in recently filed comments to the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC has scheduled a workshop on Monday to discuss the technology. Often, people use as many as five connected devices throughout a given day—a phone, computer, tablet, wearable health device, and an RFID-enabled access fob. Until now, there hasn't been an easy way to track activity on one and tie it to another.

"As a person goes about her business, her activity on each device generates different data streams about her preferences and behavior that are siloed in these devices and services that mediate them," CDT officials wrote. "Cross-device tracking allows marketers to combine these streams by linking them to the same individual, enhancing the granularity of what they know about that person."

The trick hasn't been seen in the wild, but all the pieces are in place: we all know our smartphones and laptops might end up under someone else's control, but did you know television sets now default to collecting and sending data on what you watch? [via The New Aesthetic] Read the rest

Gauntlet arcade game ported to Atari VCS


Gauntlet, Atari's 1985 dungeon-looting arcade game, came long after the heyday of its successful home console. But CDS Games has managed to pack a playable version of the complex action RPG into the primitive Atari VCS. [via] Read the rest

ISIS claims responsibility for Paris terror attacks


129 people were killed in a series of terror attacks across Paris Friday night, with Middle-East terror group ISIS claiming responsibility in the aftermath. Authorities described the carnage as the worst acts of violence to hit France since World War II.

The seemingly-coordinated shootings and explosions took place at at least six locations, including a café and a stadium where a soccer game was interrupted by an apparent suicide bombing, sending the crowd pouring onto the pitch. Eyewitnesses claim that the assailants carried Kalashnikov rifles.

Some 118 people were reported killed at the Bataclan theater, where hostages were taken and systematically executed before police stormed the building and killed at least three gunmen.

Californian rock band Eagles of Death Metal were performing a concert at the venue.

Reports of gunfire, explosions, and ongoing killings within the theater forced a police assault on the building at about 6:30 p.m. EST, according to Agence France-Presse.

Local news channel BFMTV reported that the police operation was concluded at about 7 p.m.

Julian Pearce, speaking to CNN, says he escaped the building earlier in the evening and described it as a "bloodbath."

There were further reports of gunfire at a food market near the center of town. 42 were reportedly killed there, at the Petit Cambodge restaurant in the 11th district, and in the stadium bombing.

A state of emergency was declared across the nation and 1,500 extra soldiers deployed to the capital in the aftermath of the attacks. Read the rest

Tantalum, a beautiful, browser based ray-tracer


Tantalum is a 2D ray tracer that runs in the browser. Just click anywhere in the scene and watch those rays go a-scatterin' through the simulated optics.

You can reconfigure the contents of the scene, the light emission spectrum, and much else besides. The Secret Life of Photons, by creator Benedikt Bitterli, explains everything.

r/internetisbeautiful has some neat examples. Read the rest

Man in police custody died after being tased 20 times in 30 minutes


A Virginia man who died in police custody was tased 20 times in 30 minutes, according to a civil rights lawsuit filed by his sister.

Linwood Lambert, 46, was tased 10 times within 2 minutes at one point during his arrest, racking up a total of 87 seconds of electrical discharge: enough, according to federal guidelines, to inflict serious injury or death.

Lambert was detained after officers responded to a noise complaint and found him to be delusional, according to police reports. Transported to hospital, however, he became aggressive, kicking out a car window and "sprinting roughly 20 feet towards the ER entrance and crashing into the building’s glass doors."

Video footage acquired by MSNBC shows what happened next: the officers tased him over and over again, then decided to arrest him and leave instead of taking him into the hospital.

During the incident, Lambert appears subdued on the ground and tells police he used cocaine earlier in the night. As Lambert lies on the ground outside of the hospital, police arrest him for disorderly conduct and destruction of property. Instead of taking him into the hospital to receive care they put him back into the police car.

During the incident Lambert repeatedly asked police to stop. "Why are you trying to kill me man," Lambert said in the video. "Please don't do this to me."

During the ride to the police station, Lambert appears to be unconscious and the officers realize he is in distress. An ambulance is called to take him back to the hospital and he is pronounced dead at 6:23 a.m., according to MSNBC.

Read the rest

Incredible gallery of C-90 cassette tapes

sony cassette tape

c-90.org is a thing of wonder, not least for the Catalogue of Tapes, each lovingly photographed and organized by brand.

This page is dedicated to cassette tapes. Here you won't find any kind of scientific research, technical data or things like that. The authors' only message is just to give a visitor something interesting to look at. The era of this particular medium is slowly passing, and here we are trying to turn back time for 60 minutes, or, maybe, for 90...

Pictured above is the Sony C-1C Head Cleaner. Sadly, the image sizes are rather small. Read the rest

5,400 MPH winds blast exoplanet

Mark A. Garlick/University of Warwick

We won't be colonizing this one first! Exoplanet HD189733b, previously determined to contain water in its atmosphere, is blasted by 2 kilometers-per-second winds, say researchers at the University of Warwick.

Twenty times faster than the highest wind speeds recorded on Earth, the 5,400 MPH gales are caused by the distant world's proximity to its star. Though sightly larger than Jupiter, it orbits 180 times closer, whirling around HD189733 at a distance of 2.8 million miles.

In our solar system, even baking-hot Mercury has 36 million miles between it and the Sun.

Temperatures on HD189733b are thought to exceed 1,800 °C, but the presence of water increases hopes that it will be found on more Earthlike worlds. Read the rest

EDC card, a multitool that fits in your wallet


The EDC Card [via] is exactly what its name promises: a multitool designed to fit into a wallet and be carried around every day, just in case you run into an opportunity to show off your EDC Card.

This Special Edition model comes with a weapons grade ceramic coating applied, to create a non-reflective surface for a discreet look. The back of the Special Edition EDC Card has laser etchings to designate tool sizes. Inspired by high-end outdoor/military knives, the Everyday Carry Card follows the EDC credo of usefulness, minimalism, quality, and high versatility—all in a handheld package that consumes little space.

It is TSA-safe, $80 and, the makers stress, made of blade steel, not titanium, which is soft. Read the rest

Donald Trump mad after Ben Carson's book outsells his own


Donald Trump unloaded on fellow presidential candidate Ben Carson last night, describing his rival as "pathological" and comparing his behavior to that of a child molester.

The Donald's wrath fell only hours after sales figures showed Ben Carson's A More Perfect Union surpassing his own Crippled America at the top of the New York Times bestseller lists.

NBC News:

"He wrote a book and in the book, he said terrible things about himself," Trump said of Carson. "He said that he's pathological and he's got basically pathological disease ... I don't want a person that's got pathological disease."

Trump first compared the two conditions on CNN and repeated them to a 1,500-person crowd at Iowa Central Community College: "I said that if you're a child molester, a sick puppy, a child molester, there's no cure for that - there's only one cure and we don't want to talk about that cure, that's the ultimate cure. No there's two, there's death and the other thing. But if you're a child molester, there's no cure, they can't stop you. Pathological, there's no cure."

At one point in what observers described as a rambling, 90-minute rant, Trump flipped over his belt buckle in an effort to mock the former neurosurgeon, who recently took Trump's top spot in polls of Republican voters, too.


Donald Trump on Thursday told Iowa's voters that those who support Ben Carson are "stupid" to believe the "crap" that is his life story, part of a stunning 95-minute tirade that included his most aggressive attack yet on his closest competitor.

Read the rest

Bloomingdales suggests you intoxicate your lady friends for Christmas


Even if it were a bleak ironic joke, the perfect mix of contempt and need in his eyes would make it too grotesque to be funny. But this was an actual ad running for Bloomingdales, and it has apologized for it.

Read the rest

Don't copy-paste terminal commands from the web


A clever fellow explains.

You surely know this: You're looking at some website with some useful shell commands. However, those commands are long as hell and you know you're probably not gonna need them for a few years or so (so there's no need to memorize them). So, what do you do? You copy-paste them. … What happens?

tl;dr: whatever Javascript put into your clipboard gets run irrespective of what you thought you were copying, and the outcomes can be exceedingly unpleasant. Read the rest

The meaning of blackness in Othello


The Metropolitan opera only just stopped using blackface performers. Yes! White dudes were blacking up to play Othello until 2015 and still things needed to be explained to them.

In Shakespeare's time, though—before the Atlantic slave trade, before imperialism, before Jim Crow, before civil rights, before inconsiderate cosplay—blackness was different. Why, then, was Othello black?

To us today, the word “black” carries with it a specific cluster of associations informed by history, culture, stereotypes, and literature. Othello may have started in conversation with Shakespeare’s definition of blackness, but today, he speaks with ours.

A much more interesting question, really, is: Why is Othello black? Why did Shakespeare write a domestic tragedy about jealousy, and make the husband a Moor? Is Othello’s race a canard, or is it the key to unlocking the play’s deeper meanings?

Would you believe the answer to all of this might involve pirates?

The key, Isaac Butler relates, is to consider that to renaissance Englishfolk, "Moorish" would have been inextricably tied into religion: Othello is a converted Muslim, and his tragedy, then, is possibly one of failed assimilation and acculturation. Read the rest

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