Rob Beschizza

Rob Beschizza is the Managing Editor of Boing Boing. He's @beschizza on Twitter and can be found on Facebook too. Try your luck at besc...@gmail.com

 


Clowns menace France

Coulrophobia and chaos in Sin-le-Noble, where "a girl told police she was chased by an armed person in a clown costume", among other unsettling incidents [Previously].

Gimp suit accidentally bought

mer A 71-year-old Rotary Club president planned to appear in costume as a mer-man to raise money for an Air Ambulance, but ordered a BDSM costume by mistake. His wife hacked it into shape, however, resulting in the sexiest Merman tail ever to grace a Rotarian charity event.

First sex happened "in Scottish lake"

Lots of great sex happens in Scotland, but it is also possible that the first sex happened there, too. Microbrachius dicki--yes, that is its name--was a primitive "bony" fish--yes, that is how the BBC describes it--that was apparently first to reproduce by having sex, not by spawning.

How comic conventions came to have so little room for comics

Comic conventions have been colonized and overwhelmed by mainstream movie, TV and game marketing, a surprisingly rapid process that has finally left comics so marginalized that the fandom despairs. Chris Butcher explains how barren the landscape is--and just how fucked you are if you are dependent on original book product.

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Bears would just eat zombies right up

"Zombies are just walking meat," says David Mizejewski, who explains in this video just how many they'd get through daily as part of Team Nature's cleanup operation. Check back next week to see how another type of beast would deal with the walking dead, and support the National Wildlife Federation to make sure they're around when the next major outbreak occurs . Previously.

The "weirdest lock on earth" has a key like a tiny mechanical snake

That's how this remarkable design is described by lockpicker John Coulter, whose efforts have been stymied by its peculiar design: instead of being a straight, flat piece of metal, the key is a flexible chain similar to a watch strap, housed in a hard slip-casing that allows it to be inserted into the snaking design of the lock itseld.

keygif

Coulter's been sleuthing it's origins with the help of commenters at his YouTube channel. Dan Neuenswander found a patent, awarded in 1992 to Yun-Tung Hsu, who appears to be a prolific inventor in the field.

The following illustrated is marked in the patent as prior art--meaning it is an acknowledgement of an earlier design--but it illustrates the basic concept well:

Screen Shot 2014-10-18 at 12.49.13 PM

Hsu's implementation is rather more elaborate, providing the details of mechanical implementation. Screen Shot 2014-10-18 at 12.50.10 PM

From Coulter:

MrMonkeyMonk: "This looks like a german lock to me. If you want to know more, it seems to have been awarded by the VDI, which is a german engineering club, in 1991 via the Carl-Eduard-Schulte-Stiftung. It seems to have been a diploma project, but I can not figure out who did it. Maybe you want to call the VDI: http://www.vdi.de/3129.0.html

Dan Neuenswander found the patent of this lock: https://www.google.com/patents/US5131247?dq=5131247&hl=tr&sa=X&ei=PSlCVIyKKMTfPZKdgMAO&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAA

Florida man murdered unarmed black teen

Michael Dunn (REUTERS)


Michael Dunn (REUTERS)

Michael Dunn, the Florida man who shot a black teen dead over "loud music," was convicted of first-degree murder and jailed for life without parole.

Dunn, a software engineer who has a concealed-weapons permit, previously testified in his own defense. He said he felt threatened when he thought he saw “the barrel of a gun” emerge from a window of the vehicle and acted in self-defense. Police later discovered that Davis had been unarmed. Officers also didn’t find any weapons inside the SUV.

After the shooting, Dunn and his girlfriend returned to their nearby hotel and ordered pizza.

Jordan Davis, 17 at the time he was murdered.


Jordan Davis, 17 at the time he was murdered.

Gamergate's heroes disappoint it

Andy Baio covers Gamergate's bewilderment and frustration as gamer heroes "disappear one by one into their blacklists." You'd think it might cause a little self-reflection, but that's not how the mob mind works.

Giant green butt plug looks suspiciously like a christmas tree

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A massive, 80ft sex toy in the center of Paris has some locals convinced that it's actually an inflatable Christmas tree. The design is by artist Paul McCarthy. [Photo via You Had One Job.]

Whisper's privacy promises scrutinized

The Guardian reports that Whisper, an app that lets people post anonymous missives to the world, isn't so anonymous: it allegedly monitors some users' location, shares their information with the US Department of Defense, and collects personal data indefinitely.

Approached for comment last week, Whisper said it “does not follow or track users”. The company added that the suggestion it was monitoring people without their consent, in an apparent breach of its own terms of service, was “not true” and “false”.

But on Monday – four days after learning the Guardian intended to publish this story – Whisper rewrote its terms of service; they now explicitly permit the company to establish the broad location of people who have disabled the app’s geolocation feature.

Whisper's Neetzan Zimmerman said the claims about its privacy practices were 100% false and published a rebuttal of The Guardian's allegations, along with its questions.

Mathew Ingram writes that one underlying problem is that Whisper wants to be a news publisher, a goal seemingly at odds with its mission of user anonymity and privacy.

iPad and iMac updated

The iPad Air 2 is thinner and has a fingerprint sensor; the 27" iMac goes Retina.

T-shirt printer spits them out in seconds

Epson's SureColor F2000 can print a t-shirt in just a few seconds. At Comic-Con in New York, they had one on display: I emailed a picture, rested my iPhone on its transparent lid, and recorded this real-time video of it running one off in less than a minute. Like a goddamn office memo! It does full color tees, too. Specs:


• 5-color Direct-to-Garment Printer
• All new Ultrachrome® DG inks
• Revolutionary EPSON PrecisionCore® TFP® Print Head for extreme print quality and production speeds
• Maximum resolution of 1440 x 1440 dpi for white ink and 1440 x 720 for color inks
• Large garment imaging area up to 16" x 20"
• Designed for simple maintenance and high reliability
• Garment Creator imaging software included

It was on special at the show, but you'll have to pay the full $20,000 price now, suckers. Another caveat: you have to prep the tees chemically, and with a heat press, before using it. Here's some more video from a different show:

A brief history of coonskin caps

Screen Shot 2014-10-16 at 9.03.40 AMPioneer Haute is hot again, but never as hot as it once was: "At its peak, the coonskin cap nearly ubiquitously adorned the heads of American children, made manufacturers [$2.6bn in 2014 dollars], and became one of the defining ‘it’ products in United States history."

Umbrella with no support frame

Umbrella-Outside

The Sa umbrella is said to use the "principles of origami" to maintain its shape.

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WATCH: Savage fox eats man alive

[Video Link] via