Cory Doctorow

I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.

Sportsfans offered toilet-seat made of mystery meat & beer-cheese


The Horse Collar is a $20 monster kielbasa sold at the Green Bay Packers' Lambeau Field, intended for consumption by two persons ("If you can tackle this one alone, you're a champ" -Lambeau Field executive chef Heath Barbato).

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Crowdfunded news-site uncovers ISIS training camp using online mapping tools


Bellingcat kickstarted £51K to do data-driven/crowdsourced citizen journalism earlier this month, and a week later, pinpointed the exact location of an ISIS training camp near Mosul by matching the jihadis' social media posts to online maps and geo-location services.

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Kosher pig!


Spotted yesterday on a menu at my grandparents' retirement home in Toronto: "Kosher-style porkchops." I guess if you circumcise the pig and ensure that it has a suitable Bar Mitzvah...?

Petition: remove child-specific antipersonnel device from Welsh library

The Port Authority in the Welsh town of Milford has installed a "Mosquito" -- a sonic weapon that produces tones that are mostly perceptible to children and teenagers -- at the library, where it has been used during opening hours.

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Rod Serling's closing remarks from "The Obsolete Man"

Robbo writes, "This was the closing monologue from The Twilight Zone epsiode "The Obsolete Man" - where Rod Serling sums up the realities behind and flaws within any tyranny - and, as with almost all things Serling, it remains profoundly prescient and relevant."

(Thanks, Robbo!)

Blogging History: CNN/NPR's handling of Manning's gender; Plush cell model; Removing anti-theft clothes tags

One year
CNN and NPR can't be bothered to address Manning as female (UPDATED): "Manning hasn't taken any steps yet toward gender transition so use masculine pronouns ('he' and 'him')," the internal guidance reads. "First reference, refer to him as 'Bradley Manning' and on subsequent references use 'Manning.' Also mention he has asked to change his first name to Chelsea. The guidance will be re-evaluated if Manning officially changes his/her name."

Five years
HOWTO make a plush cell model: Instructables user ChrysN has a sweet plush cell model HOWTO up on the site. ChrysN suggests that this would be a great project for students assigned to produce a cell model.

Ten years
Lazyweb request: Removing anti-theft devices still attached to purchased clothing: Most people suggested using a magnet, which did nothing. Another large group of people said take it back to the store and have them do it. Screw that; it's more fun to try it myself than to give up and drive to a loathsome mall. Some people told me to try putting a rubber band between the two pieces and twisting more and more loops around the the pin. That didn't work either. Other people suggested pinching the "nose" part of the clip on both ends with two pairs of pliers, and then pulling out the pin. Nope. Finally, I tried one guy's suggestion to hit the button with a hammer, which would cause it to split the clip open. The only thing that did was pinch the button down against the shirt. Since I already had the hammer, I hit the side of the clip, along its seam. After a few whacks, it split open. Here's what the innards look like. Nothing magnetic in there. I think the people who suggested pinching or bending the clip were on the right track.

BBC and FACT's daleks exterminate Doctor Who fansite, steal domain

One of the operators of Doctor Who Media -- one of the oldest, most respected Doctor Who fansites -- had reps from the Federation Against Copyright Theft (who produce the awful "You Wouldn't Steal a Car" ads) and the BBC thunder at his door and tell him he'd be served with a warrant if he didn't shut down the site immediately and transfer his domain to FACT.

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Pop songs as sonnets


Pop Sonnets is a tumblr that turns pop music into Shakespearean sonnets: above, YMCA ("Oh sweet and noble lad, be not aggrieved!").

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Northern Illinois University's terrible net policy censors political Wikipedia entries

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The university's new head of technology has instituted blocks for torrents, "obscene," and "unethical" pages, "misrepresenting identity," "political activities such as surveying, polling, material distribution, vote solicitation and organization or participation in meetings, rallies and demonstrations, among other activities" -- and any attempts to access blocked pages are logged and are grounds for disciplinary investigation by the school administration.

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Whale vaginas are amazing


Mammal penises, including those of cetaceans, are pretty easy to find, while vaginas are more difficult to examine; historically, accounts of animal reproduction have emphasized the features of penises and theories of sperm competition, but a burgeoning scientific emphasis on whale vaginas is revealing structures and strategies that are amazing and wonderful.

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Robin Williams explains his quick-witted improv

During a 2001 appearance on Inside the Actor's Studio, Robin Williams was asked to explain how he pulls off his incredible, high-speed improvisations; by way of answer, he ad-libbed a five-minute bit that is pants-wettingly hilarious.

(via Reddit)

Glimpses: amazing audiobook of one of the all-time-great rock-n-roll novels

Cory Doctorow rates Lewis Shiner’s haunting Glimpses as one of the all-time great rock-n-roll novels, right up there with George RR Martin’s stupendous Armageddon Rag. It’s now available as an audiobook, and he’s delighted.

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Replica Axe-Cop cosplay axe

$20, made from real plastic, and a fitting tribute to one of the most delightfully weird comics in the universe.

Wikipedia bans Congressional IP address for transphobic vandalism (again)

A Congressional staffer, or someone with access to their network, has repeatedly modified Wikipedia articles to insert transphobic slurs, prompting the second month-long lockout for the Congressional IP address in less than a month.

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Republican FCC commish defends states' rights to ban municipal ISPs


Ajit Pai's chief of staff says that the FCC shouldn't allow cities to set up public ISPs where state law prohibits it, even when no other broadband is available, and warns Democratic commissioners that they shouldn't do things that future Republican administrations might object to.

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