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Dean Putney

Software developer and GIF archivist in San Francisco. Follow me on Twitter.

Coin rolls on treadmill for an hour

This dime rolls for a little more than 58 minutes at 3.4 miles an hour. It traveled a little over five miles in that time. Check out 38:30 when the experimenter sticks his head in frame and stick around for the analysis at the end.

Coin rolling on treadmill via burritojustice

Largest collection of microcars up for auction today

The world's largest collection of microcars from the Microcar Museum in Madison, Georgia is on the auction block today and tomorrow. Put together by a single collector– Bruce Weiner, a former executive at Dubble Bubble –the collection of rare cars and memorabilia is being split up mostly because the fun part for him was collecting them, not storing them. Most of the good cars like this 1947 Rovin D2 are expected to sell between $20,000 and $40,000.

World’s largest microcar museum to close, head to auction | Hemmings Blog Thanks, Tony!

LeBron asks Khan Academy

Khan Academy has a short series of videos featuring LeBron James asking science and statistics questions, with his "good friend Sal" answering them. They cover stuff like the odds of LeBron making three free throws versus one three pointer and what muscles you use when you shoot a basket. They're an engaging introduction to Khan Academy's videos.

How to clip your fingernails in space

I found this video in Reddit's Learn Useless Talents section. In my reality this won't be useless for long!

Horde of space GIFs

4chan's worksafe GIF board– a treasure trove of excellent content before it hits the social media tracts –has a great thread of space GIFs up now. I've selected a few of the best here.

Read the rest

Live action Toy Story

Jonason and Jesse—two incredibly dedicated and talented maniacs—have created a shot-for-shot live action recreation of Toy Story. They've kept the toys' voices and some of the soundtrack, but Andy and the family are played by real people and all the sets and toys are real. Wowowow!

Read the rest

The Golden Key

George MacDonald's The Golden Key is a classic fairy tale in the truest form. A young boy hears a tale from his great-aunt about a golden key at the foot of the rainbow, and charges into Fairyland to find it where the indescribably beautiful colors end. Find it at the end of this Gutenberg collection of fairy tales or in this Kindle version, it's long enough for three or four story times. [Thanks Phill!] Dean

An Unexpected Twist

Andy Borowitz tells the harrowing tale of his near-death experience with severe intestinal trouble. A good poop joke should not go unappreciated, and this is a brilliantly told 18-page poop joke. Give it a read on your lunch break. Dean

Census Dotmap: a dot for every person in the United States

Cartography and data analysis nut Brandon M-Anderson put together this impressive zoomable map of the United States with one dot for each of the 308,450,225 people recorded by the 2010 census: oddities revealed include people living in "abandoned" areas or parks. A Redditor stitched the tiles into a huge image.

Golden eagle snatches kid

One second this eagle is gliding around above a park, majestic, then moments later it swoops down and tries to grab a toddler. It's just so sudden and unexpected: the bird looks small when it's far away, but oh god nope that's one of those Hobbit-carrying guys and little red monkey hat is off to Mordor.

It may not be real, but damn it's a good fake. There's more info here.

Video Link: Golden eagle snatches kid

Hatch's Fugus are the cutest digital pets ever

More than a year ago, my friend Phill showed me an iPhone app he was working on: a revamp of Tamagotchi, an adorable little pet you take care of on your phone. My digital pets normally starve alone in a huge pile of their electronic feces, but Hatch was different. It was detailed and rich, with beautifully done art by David Lanham. I've loved playing with it throughout its development, even when it used to burp in your pocket at inappropriate times.

I've been pestering Phill for months to release it so other people could play it too, and today they're finally announcing that you can adopt one of these squishy little guys in preparation for the app release.  Get one of these cuties early!

Hatch: Adopt a Fugu

Beautiful snowflake catching music generator

A while back, my friend Rich Vreeland, AKA Disasterpeace, made a Flash game called January where you catch snowflakes on your tongue and each plays a soft, pining note. Rich has been busy lately making music for other video games, but he just pushed out a big update to January. The new version trims down on the storyline in favor of a more capable music generator. It has auto-pilot functionality, a selection of keys to choose from, a pentatonic mode, and the ability to save your generated compositions as MIDI files.

Check out the new version of January and the original version.

You have better things to do than buy earbuds

Busy people like you and I don't have the time nor the inclination to navigate the sea of earbuds out there, so I turned to Wirecutter to find out what they recommended as the best earbuds. They've got a fine recommendation in the $100 category, and now that I've got a pair of them I can verify that they're great. Here's the executive summary as to why:

• Excellent sound, with a little extra bass.
• Flat cable shows you where twists are so they really never get tangled.
• Controls and microphone work with the iPhone and are unambiguous and easy to click.

One important note not on Wirecutter: get these memory foam tips with them. I tried the rubber inserts and molding my own earplugs (from two materials even!) but they always slip out or don't seal properly in my ear. With these foam tips you'll get a nice seal in your ear to project the sound, and they're practically earplugs on their own so you can't hear anything but the music even when it's quiet.

Velodyne vPulse in-ear headphones and Comply memory foam tips

More thorough review at Wirecutter

Teddy bears with terrifying human teeth

Mrs. McGettrick's Fuggler Emporium on Etsy specializes in adorable teddy bears... with creepy artificial human teeth. Some of them have little plastic weapons, but all of them share a disturbing "I have seen the void" gaze.

 The products' descriptions are great as well:

It's been said that I need a hobby. Here it is. The moral of this story? Be careful what you wish for. My house is filled with these creatures now, and my husband has a sadness about it all. He rocks back and forth, eyes seeing some distant, unknown horror, fingers coiled loosely around our old, trusty shotgun, uttering cryptic warnings to all who come near.

SMALL PRINT: Mrs McGettrick's Fugglers are not suitable for small/medium/oral fixated children, as there is a risk that small parts could come loose and present a choking hazard. Colours may vary from the photographs, due to monitor settings, flash, and my inability to use a camera. Mrs McGettrick's Fugglers are made in a house containing a cat. A cat who pulls out her own fur in an attempt at shocking nudity, and who walks like Nosferatu. If you have cat allergies, I might suggest you avoid buying from this shop. Mrs McGettrick's Fugglers are not suitable for people who don't appreciate cuddly toys with uncannily realistic teeth jutting out from their mouths. Mrs McGettrick's Fugglers are not suitable for people who have ever harboured a suspicion that toys can come alive at night.

Mrs McGettrick's Fuggler Emporium via reddit

Finest mechanical bird song of 1890

This lovely mechanical contraption is designed to mechanically recreate bird song. The video uploader says this was made about 120 years ago in Paris, probably by Blaise Bontems who was known for this type of automaton. It's a fascinating, delicate device!

The Finest Bird Song of 1890