Want to urinate in a gold toilet? You're in luck at the Guggenheim

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Now you too can spend a penny in a priceless pissoir: New York's Guggenheim Museum is inviting visitors to take a slash in a gold toilet created by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan. Read the rest

NYT: Trump "Obese"

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After having promised to reveal a medical status report, then reportedly deciding not to, millionaire presidential candidate Donald Trump finally offered a handful of details via TV host Dr. Mehmet Oz. He takes statins and weighs 267 pounds, which Oz describes as "slightly overweight" but which The New York Times eagerly informs us is, in fact, medical obesity for a man of Trump's height.

Over many months, Mr. Trump has sought to raise questions about the health of Mrs. Clinton, 68, and his supporters have asserted that she is hiding something about her health (her aides have denied this). But Mr. Trump has answered almost no questions about his own health over the last 15 months of his campaign, except for issuing a highly unusual doctor’s note.

So the appearance on Dr. Oz’s show, announced on Friday, had been anticipated as a potential breakthrough, as Mr. Trump’s aides had said that over the next few days he would release results from the physical examination, which was conducted last week.

Earlier on Wednesday, Mr. Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, told Fox News that she did not think the candidate should release medical information on a television show.

This paragraph at the end of the Maggie Halberman's story caught my attention:

He has also been criticized for questionable assertions over the course of his television career, and sometimes speaks in the same type of hyperbole as Mr. Trump, which the medical profession has been known to reject.

What you are supposed to know from these words: that Oz is paid to pitch weight-loss pills on his show, that he describes them as "magic," and that his colleagues think he's a quack. Read the rest

Google: we're not involved in Adblock Plus's ad network

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Adblock Plus, an adblocking plugin recently unveiled as a trojan horse for a new ad network, claimed Google and AppNexus were among its partners. This is not so, according to Google and AppNexus. Read the rest

Mini-documentary about H.R. Giger's Alien design

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Kritian Williams: "He wasn't bound by the common design tropes of the '70s. He was able to create something genuinely Alien, a distorted biomechanical reflection of man. Everything we feared about ourselves, taken to the point of surrealism." Read the rest

Flowchart: which Shakespeare play to see

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This illustrated flowchart makes it easy to pick an evening out with the Bard. Read the rest

Trump supporter punches out old lady outside rally

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A 69-year-old woman was cold-cocked outside a Trump event by one of the Republican millionaire's supporters, reports ABC News—an attack so deplorable that cops plan to charge one of his violent rallygoers with a crime. Read the rest

Adblock Plus now selling ads

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Adblock Plus is to begin reselling the ads it blocks, replacing websites' original ads with ones under its control—and which it takes a fat cut of the revenue from.

The program is meant to be friendly to publishers — it is, after all, letting them display some ads instead of none whatsoever. But there’s still obvious reason for publishers to be unhappy. Acceptable ads [AdBlock Plus' in-house advertising] are likely to be less valuable than the ads a publisher could otherwise display, limiting what a website can earn. And in setting up its own marketplace, Adblock Plus continues to position itself as a gatekeeper charging a toll to get through a gate of its own making.

This was always the gameplan. AdBlock Plus marketed itself as about blocking ads, but it's really about providing a temporary improvement in user experience to convince readers to insert it as a middleman between them, publishers and advertisers. Once secure, AdBlock Plus can let advertising (and the user experience) creep back to the profitable way it was before, but with it charging rent to everyone.

If you block ads, at least block them with something that isn't taking a shit on both of us: get rid of it and try uBlock Origin. If you don't like ads but would like to support Boing Boing, buy a t-shirt or an inexpensive gadget from our store.

Correction: an earlier version of this post referred to AdBlock Plus as AdBlock. They are different products from different vendors. Read the rest

Stabilized wingsuit footage reveals how awesome it is to fly

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Graham Dickinson jumped off a mountain in a wingsuit, but the footage of such things is usually chaotic, off-kilter, somehow subtly unlike reality. The joy reported is hard to appreciate: even if we get how amazing it must be, we're replaying a machine's limitations as much as the flight. Read the rest

What fastmouthed auctioneers are saying

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"The auctioneer is typically speaking logical sentences quickly," says Barry Baker of Ohio Real Estate Auctions, "with filler words mixed in." Read the rest

Chill out with the Current Conditions channel

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Current condition (via Mefi) is a website lurking in the airwaves and wires somewhere between teletext, those high-number cable channels that just play music and weather, and where the planes were in 19A0 or so. Read the rest

British Brexiters shocked to find out they might have to get permission to travel to Europe

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This is what happens who you trust tabloids and rich politicians who say you can have your cake and eat it. What they mean is they can have their cake, and you eat it. Today's shit sandwich is for Brits who thought that leaving the European Union, and preventing people coming into the UK, wouldn't mean reciprocal movement controls. As Nigerian Chibundu Onuzo puts it: Welcome to the world of restricted travel, British people!

The proposed scheme wouldn’t require Britons to have a visa, but intentions for travelling would need to be clearly stated online and applications could, in theory, be denied. It would, in essence, be a curb on freedom of movement: a freedom I have never fully experienced because of my nationality.

I’ve always needed a visa to legally travel out of Nigeria to most places in the world. There are other ways to do it. My cousin walked across the Sahara and slipped into Europe via the Mediterranean, but he was later deported.

Every time I fly into Heathrow, I am reminded that a plastic visa card is the only thing stopping my presence in London being a crime. I often see the other travellers who have been ushered to the side, their lives deemed illegal, only that thin square of plastic separating us. ... who knows? Maybe filling out forms to travel might make Britain more sympathetic to immigrants. I bet Nigel Farage didn’t think of that.

Just imagine the bloviating Harry Enfield rage of lumpy English holidaymakers denied entry to Spain or Ibeefa because they forgot to register their trip with the Proper Authorities. Read the rest

Fury Road before the visual effects were added

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They put out a compilation of scenes from Mad Max: Fury Road as they were shot, with no CGI or no artsy color grading. It makes me love the film even more: I want a minimalist cut of the whole thing like this, with the only CGI work being what's absolutely necessary to make things work (painting out other cameras and wires, adding key explosions, the waterfall...) and CGI-heavy scenes like the sandstorm interior completely removed.

One thought, though: this would probably make Fury Road's sustained, stylized violence (which is rather different from the startling, crude violence of the first two Mad Max movies) less palatable. You'd be surprised how many people already have a problem with it, even if they love the series. It would be an interesting editing challenge. [via io9] Read the rest

Randomly Generated Catalog of Creepily Nondescript Domestic Surveillance Equipment

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The Cobham catalog, exposed by The Intercept, features countless pages of surveillance gadgets sold to U.S. police to spy on American citizens: tiny black boxes with a big interest in you. In the creepily bland feature lists and nerdy product names is a whisper of a dark future; perhaps darker than anyone can imagine.

The revolutionary life of Emma Goldman, anarchist legend

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Emma Goldman was dubbed "one of the most dangerous women in America" by J. Edgar Hoover. But that's just the beginning of a legendary life of keen insight, uncompromising anarchism, and burned bridges. Read the rest

Roland's selling "faithful" new versions of classic synths

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You can get close with modern clones of the TB-303 bassline synthesizer and the TR-909 drum machine, but Roland made the originals, and it's making them again. They're not identical—being smaller, for starters—but they're taking the job seriously and response seems very positive: users say the new models are faithful and improved. The lineup is being sold as "Roland Boutique" and I doubt I'll be able to resist for long.

But here’s where I’ll say something blasphemous:

I think insisting on using the original 303 and 909, at their current used prices, is absurd. And not only that, but it cuts anyone who doesn’t have large chunks of disposal income out of the joy of using these instruments. That’s ironic for instrument whose legacy was built on being essentially undesirable – an unwanted machine that got into the hands artists who abused them in creative ways.

Don’t get me wrong: if you’ve got an original TB-303 or a TR-909, good for you, and enjoy! But with reliability failing and prices continuing to clime, this simply isn’t an option for a lot of people. (Ironically, it’s easier to make a 17th century viola da gamba last than electronic instruments, so we’re always going to have to deal with making new gear.)

What’s special about the TB-303 and TR-909 remakes is that they actually give you what you want. They give you the sound and the design. But they also do the other things you’d wish for – they’re convenient, they’re not expensive, and they have some modern additions that make them more usable and fun to play.

Read the rest

Interesting toilet

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Reddit user rykahn confirms that there is no lock on the door of the Existential Toilet they chanced across this weekend, where one is always alone yet fully empowered by the cold vastness of the universe. [via CrappyDesign] Read the rest

It's raining diseased birds in Boston

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47 grackles fell from the heavens on the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston this weekend, with at least 32 dead. Two cats who ate the remains also ran out of lives.

City officials have sent the dead grackles, which are a type of songbird that travels in flocks, to Tufts University to help determine the cause of death. It is currently unclear whether the birds perished due to a virus, some sort of environmental pollution or intentional poisoning. Test results are expected next week.

“We don’t know what is going on,” John Meaney of the city of Boston’s Inspectional Services told NECN. “So we are investigating all avenues.”

Local resident Willien Pugh told the Boston Herald that his cat Sally B was found dying on the back porch as deceased birds fell from the sky.

“We took the cat from outside and we thought it was a girl so we named it Sally – then when we took it to the vet, we found out it was a boy, so we started calling her Sally B,” Pugh said. “Real good cat.”

47 Grackles is my new mid-2000s-style productivity blog-cum-punk band. [Photo: MDF] Read the rest

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