Mark Frauenfelder

Mark Frauenfelder is the founder of Boing Boing and the founding editor-in-chief of MAKE. He is editor-in-chief of Cool Tools and co-founder of Wink Books. Twitter: @frauenfelder. His new book is Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects



Now I Know More: the revealing stories behind even more of the world's most interesting facts

Last year I reviewed Dan Lewis' book, Now I Know: The Revealing Stories Behind the World's Most Interesting Facts. Dan recently released a followup title, called Now I Know More, and like its predecessor, it's chock full of fascinating true stories about things you thought you already knew about.

In this volume, you'll learn:

  • Why Congress gets free pornographic magazines
  • How to steal the Empire State Building
  • What not to do with a check for a million dollars
  • About the college student who micro-funded his scholarship

And 97 other strange-but-true stories.

Buy Now I Know More on Amazon

Zelda the cat looks through a paper towel tube

zelda Zelda, a frequent guest on Boing Boing's Virgin America seatback channel, enjoys peering through a paper towel tube.

Hyper-realistic drawings on plywood

Singaporean artist Ivan Hoo uses pastels, colored pencils, and ink to create realistic drawings on cardboard. The cup on the right is the drawing.

An "anti-drop" device for Phablets

bunker-ringAs an iPhone 6 Plus owner, I'm interested in the Bunker Ring, a $16 device that attaches to the back of a phone or tablet, basically turning your phone into a giant finger ring.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office doesn't like comfy balls

The US Patent and Trademark Office denied a Norwegian underwear manufacturer's application to register the brand name Comfyballs, explaining that it was too "vulgar" to trademark. Please post alternate names in the BBS. [via]

New PES stop-motion film: Submarine Sandwich

Hurray! A new short film by stop-motion artist PES. In this one, a butcher makes a tasty sub sandwich out of baseball mitts, and other non-edible stuff.

Harvard Business School professor apologizes to Chinese restaurant for being "very much out of line"

Ben Edelman, the Harvard Business School professor who played hardball with a Chinese restaurant who overcharged him, has posted an apology on his website:

Many people have seen my emails with Ran Duan of Sichuan Garden restaurant in Brookline.

Having reflected on my interaction with Ran, including what I said and how I said it, it’s clear that I was very much out of line. I aspire to act with great respect and humility in dealing with others, no matter what the situation. Clearly I failed to do so. I am sorry, and I intend to do better in the future.

I have reached out to Ran and will apologize to him personally as well.

Harvard Business School professor goes to war over $4 worth of Chinese food

Ben Edelman (left) is an associate professor at Harvard Business School. Last week he ordered take-out Chinese food and when he looked at the receipt he learned that he'd been overcharged $4. What follows is the email exchange between Edelman and Ran Duan (right), son of the restaurant's founders.

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Actor injuries that made it into the movie

Sometimes the blood you see in a movie isn't fake, but the result of a real injury.

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Improved Mid-Century Modern rocking chair

chair-openerMy book Maker Dad has instructions for making this Mid-Century Modern rocking chair. The design is based on a chair that was built around 1950 by Alexey Brodovitch, a designer who was the art director at Harper's Bazaar from 1934 to 1958. I built Brodovitch's chair and discovered that it was not very sturdy. I changed the design to have better support, and a few iterations later came up with a chair that felt more robust.

Last week Edward Reading sent me photos of the chair he built with his son. He improved on my design: "I counter-sunk the dowels about half the thickness of the plywood, and glued them for additional support. I also notched the sides to receive the 8" brace, and glued that in as well." Good job, Ed!

Here are photos of his chair:

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chair3

chair6

chair7

chair9

chair10

chair11

Ed's son is holding the peg trick, which you can see in the above video.

Buy Maker Dad on Amazon

CIA torturers forced hummus, raisins, pasta and nuts into detainees' anuses

CSA

"Daddy, what did you do when you were in the CIA?"

"I raped detainees and stuffed food into their anuses, son."

"I hope I don't grow up to be a CIA officer like you, Daddy."

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A tiny phone that fits in an iPhone case

talkcase

The Talkase is a mini GSM standalone phone that snaps into an iPhone case. The $70 phone is described as a "must-have accessory for a mobile lifestyle."

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New Futility Closet book - hairless trombonists, abusive New Zealanders, vengeful whales and more

fc2

Futility Closet is Greg Ross' website (and podcast) of astounding and intriguing curiosities unearthed from old library books. Futility Closet 2 (the followup to last year's Futility Closet 1) is the second print collection of "entertaining oddities in history, literature, language, art, philosophy, and mathematics. Many of the wonderful things Greg finds would probably be lost forever if not for his hard work and keen sense of the unusual.

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