Daily Mail reporter poses on Syria front lines with assault rifle

isis

British tabloid newspaper The Daily Mail posted a photo of reporter Mark Nicol on the Syrian front lines posing with an assault rifle. This is bad for numerous reasons, but the main one is that it casts western reporters as mercenary participants and invites summary execution upon capture.

Hope you can shoot straight, Mark! Read the rest

Wha Oh! Wha Oh! That thing you hear in every other pop song is the Millennial Whoop

millenial-whoop

The Patterning's Patrick Metzger reports on the increasing prevalence of a repeating two-note motif in pop music, bouncing between the fifth and third notes of a major chord. The Millenial Whoop is everywhere. Read the rest

Listen: Florida congressional candidate losing his temper with a reporter

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Dan Bongino is a former secret serviceman running for office in Florida. In a tweet, he suggested that coverage of his backers in Naples Daily News was "propaganda."

Asked by Politico reporter Marc Caputo to be specific, they end up on a call (after some Twitter trash talk), where things go horribly wrong for Bongino. (The action gets most classy about 7m 30s in)

Caputo's being tricky—Bongino's "propaganda" remark isn't aimed at any specific claim in a specific story, even if it was a response to a tweeted Daily News URL. But Caputo knows how to work an angry idiot, and Bongino soon shits himself on a recorded call.

BONGINO: Marc, listen, you go fuck yourself.

CAPUTO: Awwwww, Dan, you're so angry!

[Crosstalk]

BONGINO: My entire following has been developed by beating on people like you. ... My audience is far bigger than yours.

Indiscreet, so say the least. But this is a fellow who talks of himself in the third person.

Read the rest

Own a legit British sign for "Battle Station"

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Battle is a town in East Sussex, England. Battle has a railway station. A pilfered road sign directing travelers to Battle Station is currently £23.95 on eBay. "This deserves a good home" writes Ben Goldacre. Read the rest

Women villains as role models

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Tired of lady villains being given pathetic, exploitative backstories to justify and explain their wicked ways? Sarah Gailey writes In Defense of Villainesses: women who are flawless, ruthless and require no pathological explanation.

We love her and we hate her in equal measure. We feel that way because she revels in being all the things that we are told we aren’t allowed to be. She is confident, and she has wrinkles, and her nose isn’t a formless nonthreatening comma in the middle of an ill-defined wide-eyed face—it’s a knife, or an arrow, or a scythe. She frowns. Everyone in the audience and on the internet wants to talk about whether or not she’s sexy but they’re asking the wrong questions and she’s laughing at them for it. She wears bright colors, nonprimary colors that coordinate with her green skin or her purple eyeshadow. She’s too good for this game, too smart for her boss, tired of getting stepped on. She gets mad and she gets even.
Read the rest

Sidelined Trump campaign chief quits, rumored to be target of federal investigation over Ukraine ties

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Sidelined but not fired by Republican millionaire Donald Trump to make way for a new campaign manager, Paul Manafort is nonetheless resigning from his post. The rumor? He's under federal investigation for his role in shady goings-on in Ukranian politics.

Mr. Manafort left nearly a week after a New York Times report about tumult within the Republican presidential nominee’s campaign helped precipitate a shakeup of the campaign’s leadership. His departure reflects repeated efforts to steady a campaign that has been frequently roiled by the behavior of its tempestuous first-time candidate.

Mr. Manafort was also dogged by reports about secretive efforts he made to help the former pro-Russian government in Ukraine, where he has worked on and off over several years. He had also become viewed with trepidation by Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and a major force within the campaign, amid a number of false starts since the Republican National Convention, according to three people briefed on the matter.

U.S. lobbyists must declare their representation of foreign interests; he did not. Manafort, if found guilty of violating these rules, would be a felon facing "up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000," according to the Associated Press. Read the rest

Funklet: drum sequences from classic tracks

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Funklet is a new archive of drum patterns (not sampled loops) from classic funk songs, complete with brief histories and musical context. Each can be edited in a simple embedded sequencer and shared. [via r/InternetIsBeautiful] Read the rest

Meet the Megaprocessor: a 16-bit CPU the size of a room

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Chipmaking is a relentless competition to make transistors smaller and smaller. Such refined technology is as inscrutable to users as angels dancing on the head of a few hundred copper pins, so James Newman set out to make a working CPU whose every connection can be explored and understood by students.

"Like all modern processors the Megaprocessor is built from transistors," he writes. "It's just that instead of using teeny-weeny ones integrated on a silicon chip it uses discrete individual ones... Thousands of them. And loads of LEDs."

The resulting machine took two years to construct and recalls the earliest room-filling electronic computers, with banks of blinking lights and ropes of cable linking each refridgerator-sized peripheral. But this time, it's by choice rather than limitation: with a light on every connection, you can see the logic and movement of data through the chip in person.

Ten meters wide and 2 meters tall, the 16-bit Megaprocessor is deliberately simple and slow. Clocked at 20kHz, it could feel at home in an airport-sized Commodore Amiga or classic Mac, though it's not quite as complicated as the Motorola 68000 that inspired it.

There's already software to play with, though, including a rough implementation of Tetris. You can download an emulator to get started on making your own.

"I didn't plan on ending up here. I started by wanting to learn about transistors," Newman writes. "Things got out of hand. Read the rest

Interactive 3D visualization of Wikipedia

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The online enyclopedia is "reimagined as a cosmic web of knowledge" at Wikiverse: a representational web upon the literal web that implemented a conceptual web. Read the rest

eBay auction shouts STOP! STOP! STOP!

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r/videos rediscovered a remarkable (albeit old) video of an eBay auction for a DVD "backing card"—the art from the box—that warns browsers in no uncertain terms that they are not getting the movie itself. Read the rest

Flood destroys home of man who believes floods sent to punish gays

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Amid the horror of floods that have covered southern Louisiana in recent days, a grim note of irony: Tony Perkins, the head of the anti-queer Family Research Council, is among those whose homes are underwater. Perkins believes natural disasters are sent to punish gays. Read the rest

Olympic tennis arena completely green

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At the Rio olympics, every inch of the tennis arena beyond the court itself is bright lime green. Therefore, factionman chroma keyed it against a variety of interesting and charming backdrops. Read the rest

Trump spokesman angry at fact

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On CNN, host Brianna Keilar asked Trump spokesman Michael Cohen about his candidate's sinking poll numbers. "Says who?" he demands. Read the rest

What will the news be on November 9?

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The broken ansible in the basement ("We've been instructed in no uncertain terms never to use it, and the last editor to do so disappeared in a flash of late 1970s-era BBC special effects, presumably an extremely painful demise.") coughed this up today. I suspect it might be real.

Tzump_(Wikipedia article from the future) Read the rest

Not one Boston cop volunteers to wear a bodycam

Protestors at a march in Roxbury, MA. Photo: CBS News

Boston's police do not want to be accountable for their actions: not a single officer volunteered to participate in a pilot program for the force's bodycams, which will now be randomly distributed.

The Boston Globe reports [Police Commissioner William ] Evans made the comments Tuesday during his monthly "Ask the Commissioner" interview on WGBH-FM's Boston Public Radio. The move comes after Evans warned that he might have to force officers to wear them because no officers volunteered. The rollout date for the pilot program is Sept. 1.

The Boston Herald reports that they're still trying to find a way to avoid wearing the cameras.

Patrolman’s Association President Patrick M. Rose has said forcing officers to wear body cameras goes against the deal the union reached with the department. Rose did not respond to requests for comment yesterday. ... Attorney Leonard Kesten, who regularly represents officers, said the union may claim “unfair labor practices” if it deems that body cameras are a change in working conditions. But personally, he said he is in favor of them.

A sad reminder that it's not a case of bad apples, in many police departments, but a rotten barrel. What better reason to place public servants under scrutiny than their attempts to evade it? Read the rest

Animation of every Olympic 100m dash winner racing one another

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Since 1896, the 100m dash remains the best thing at Olympic track & field apart from the weapons-throwing events. Usain Bolt dominates now, but would he have dominated then? Yes, of course he would have: by several seconds! (Not included: Ben Johnson's steroid-fueled 9.79s win at the '88 Games, for which he was disqualified. Bolt beat it in 2008 and 2012's race, and other athletes have outside the Olympics) Read the rest

Kyle "Paul Atreides" McLachlan explains Dune with a single tweet

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The movie Dune was spectacular but incomprehensible: a boiling-down of a huge science fiction epic into a couple of hours of action. Star Kyle McLachlan, however, can fit the whole thing into a tweet, using only emoji. The Tweeter must awaken!

Read the rest

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