Two babies talking to each other on FaceTime

If anyone speaks Baby, please provide a translation. Read the rest

President blames the "fake media" for Flynn's firing - Jake Tapper has a field day

Yesterday, the president says it's all the "fake media's" fault for the extremely short duration of his national security advisor's tenure. That makes no sense, but speaking coherently has never been one of the president's strong points. In any case, CNN's Jake Tapper decided to show the president what fake news really is - by trotting out the crazy conspiracy theories spread by the president: Obama's birth certificate and Ted Cruz's father's role in the assassination of JFK. Read the rest

Beautiful coin spins for 7-9 minutes

J.L. Lawson & Co makes tops, spinner coins, and other hand-machined products.

Their latest thing is the Tempus Spin Coin, and has been successfully funded on Kickstarter. It's still available in .999 silver, bronze, and copper.

For those of you that are interested in spin times, my average time ranges from 7-9 minutes. Considering the art isn't balanced, the spin is fairly balanced but, keep in mind, this coin wasn't intended for perfect spinning. It's more to help keep you entertained at the local bar.

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Drug catapult found attached to Arizona-Mexico border fence

The taller the wall, the farther catapults like these will be able to fling bundles of drugs. This one was found at the Mexico-Arizona border.

From KVUE:

When agents arrived, they searched the area and located two bundles of marijuana, weighing more than 47 pounds combined, as well as a catapult system attached to the Mexico side of the border fence.

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Puzzle: the lazy electrician

Here's a brain teaser from the Art of Play newsletter. I have not tried to solve it yet.

A lazy electrician is hired to fix the wiring in a tall building. In the basement are three buttons labeled, “A, B & C.” On the top floor of the building there are three ceiling fans in three different apartments labeled, “1, 2 & 3.” The landlord tells the electrician that each button in the basement is connected to one of the three fans upstairs—press the button once, and the fan turns on. Press it twice, and that same fan turns off. The problem is, no one knows which button controls which fan.

There is no elevator in the building and the electrician is very lazy so he will only climb up the stairs to the top floor once. It will take him nearly an hour to climb all the stairs and he refuses to use any assistance of any kind in order to complete this job. If it is impossible to see the fans from outside of their respective apartments, how does the electrician discover which button controls which fan once he climbs up the stairs for the first (and last) time?

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This $25 bidet is amazing

I bought this $25 non-electric bidet last month and without going into detail, I have to say it's a game changer. I just bought another one for the other bathroom. The water is not heated like with those high-tech Japanese toilets, but there's something to be said for a refreshing blast of cold water. Installation took less than 15 minutes. Read the rest

Fool strangers in public places with the code-generating website

Shoulder surfers will be totally blown away by your movie hacker skills!

[via] Read the rest

A surprisingly large number of animals kill each other after sex

Katherine Ellen Foley reports on the curious phenomenon of sexual cannibalism in the animal kingdom.

But octopuses aren’t the only ones who kill their sex partners. Female praying mantises often kill their mates, especially if they’re hungry, and within certain species of spiders, the males will actually offer themselves as a meal for their newly-impregnated partners.

Despite the ferocity of mating in the animal kingdom, romance is not dead: sexual cannibalism can be something of a gift from the male to the female in many cases. Female wolf spiders and tarantulas, who often eat males pre-intercourse, produce 30% more eggs than those who don’t when they finally get around to mating. And in the mantis’ case, the death of one male often means the survival of the reproducing female.

“It’s probably not the male’s preferred outcome,” Scheel says. “But if you think about it…contributing his calories to his offspring doesn’t do any harm [to the species].”

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Largest coal-fired power plant is shutting down. What will Trump do now?

Trump made a big deal about saving the dying coal industry. “[We’re] bringing back jobs, big league. We’re bringing them back at the plant level. We’re bringing them back at the mine level. The energy jobs are coming back.”

But in recent weeks, owners of two coal-fired power plants announced they were going to cease operations, including the largest coal-fired facility in the western United States. They can't compete with natural gas price, which "have made it more expensive to produce electricity at the facility than to purchase it from cheaper sources," according to the Washington Post. It reminds me of my friend who sells novelty items on his website, but stopping because Amazon's retail price of the same items is usually less than the price he pays to buy the items from manufacturers.

Trump’s ability to save the Navajo plant and others like it is limited, despite his rhetoric. Even if his administration follows through on its promises to relax regulations on the coal industry, those changes aren’t likely to change coal’s fading market.

And if the owners of coal-fired plants lose money when they operate their facilities, keeping them running makes little economic sense.

For some reason, Trump's energy plan makes no mention of solar, "an industry that just added 51,000 jobs." Maybe he could issue an executive order requiring solar panels to have coal burners on them to belch smoke. Read the rest

"I’ll never bring my phone on an international flight again. Neither should you."

Quincy Larson asks you to image "What’s the worst thing that could happen if the Customs and Border Patrol succeed in getting ahold of your unlocked phone?"

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Temperature in Oklahoma reaches 99 degrees in mid-February

A heat-wave hit Oklahoma, sending temperatures into the high 90s. Norman, Oklahoma was 99 degrees F (37 C) on February 11.

From ThinkProgress:

Many people may welcome a temperate day in February, but warm weather in normally cold months disrupts ecosystems. Trees may bloom after an unseasonably balmy spell — and then suffer frost damage when cold weather returns. Flowers may blossom and shed their petals before bees arrive to pollinate them. These minor destabilizations have a ripple effect, impacting flora, fauna, and the industries built around them.

In Oklahoma, the spike in temperature is particularly ironic, given the state’s political climate. [Sen. James "Snowball" Inhofe (R-OK)] is Washington’s most vocal climate denier, having published a book alleging that climate change is a hoax while serving as the ranking Republican member of the Senate Environment Committee.

Image: Mesonet Read the rest

Hacking a $2 voice recorder

I'm really enjoying Donald Bell's Maker Project Lab videos on YouTube. They are short reports on cool things happening in the world of making. This week, Donald talks about a circuit-bent voice recording intercom, a $500 laser engraver, a Raspberry Pi robot arm, Flick Face electronics project, Pi Cams compared, and a PocketCHIP review. Read the rest

People are teasing Instagram by posting genderless nipples art

Instagram is now challenged with determining the gender of decorated nipples so it can enforce its very serious and important policy of forbidden the display of women's nipples.

Previoulsy: Genderless Nipples account frustrates Instagram Read the rest

Kim Jong-un’s brother killed with poison spray at airport

In olden times, kings and queens had royal poisoners on hand to get rid of inconvenient people. They were good at what they did. For example, they could lightly dust a letter or page of a book with a powder that would kill whoever touched it.

Politically-motivated poisoning is back in vogue. New York reports that "Kim Jong-nam, the older half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, was killed in a Malaysian airport Monday after he was sprayed in the face with an unknown liquid, police said Tuesday."

The oldest son of Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-nam was seen as the heir apparent in North Korea throughout the 1990s. But that reportedly changed after he was caught with a forged Dominican passport in 2001 as he was trying to sneak his way into Japan to attend Tokyo Disneyland. The subsequent fallout from that incident led to Kim Jong-un’s grooming to take over for the Dear Leader.

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Bet on what will Trump ban during his first term

UK betting site Paddy Power is taking bets on a number of Trump related possibilities, including suspending the 1st Amendment (40-to-1), repealing Obamacare (1-to-2), banning abortion (3-to-1), re-opening Alcatraz as a prison (14-to-1), outlawing the theory of evolution (50-to-1), and banning stairs (500-to-1). Read the rest

"Your Name" is the highest-grossing anime feature ever

Your Name is the highest-grossing anime feature ever, knocking Spirited Away to the number two spot. Tofugu has a feature story about Your Name, which includes an interview with director Makoto Shinkai.

Without giving too much of the twist away, let's just say the film arcs from the careless fantasy of Freaky Friday to the sci-fi esoterica of Sense8 after Taki's impactful revelation. It's a surprising plus that Your Name invites comparisons to such a broad spread of body-swapping, mind-melding fiction at different turns. Even when venturing into stranger territory, it keeps a brisk pace and a spring in its step – exploring deep thoughts without brooding on them.

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Oklahoma lawmakers want men to approve all abortions

Oklahoma Rep. Justin Humphrey is pushing for the passage of House Bill 1441, "prohibiting abortion to be performed without consent of the father; requiring pregnant woman seeking to abort pregnancy to provide identity of father." It might as well be called the Handmaid's Tale Law.

Rep. Humphrey explained his reasoning behind the bill to The Intercept:

“I believe one of the breakdowns in our society is that we have excluded the man out of all of these types of decisions,” [Humphrey] said. “I understand that they feel like that is their body,” he said of women. “I feel like it is a separate — what I call them is, is you’re a ‘host.’ And you know when you enter into a relationship you’re going to be that host and so, you know, if you pre-know that then take all precautions and don’t get pregnant,” he explained. “So that’s where I’m at. I’m like, hey, your body is your body and be responsible with it. But after you’re irresponsible then don’t claim, well, I can just go and do this with another body, when you’re the host and you invited that in.”

Was he wearing his swell cowboy costume when he said this? Read the rest

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