How to become a superstar vlogger

Liam Williams was given money by the BBC to explain the success and culture of YouTube vloggers.

A search for the next megastar vlogger finds an unlikely victor in struggling comedian, Liam, who must undertake a series of challenges in order to win a £10,000 prize. Along the way, several successful YouTubers give him help and advice.

Both an explainer and a The Office-like mockumentary, there is a weird magic about this that seeps out with the skill and naturalism of its performers. Why, exactly, do young people stare for hours at people just like themselves, talking about themselves? And why is there a corresponding caste of tired, decade-older cynical people wishing they could be there with them? Read the rest

Otonamaki: wrapping oneself in cloth to ease pain

Otonomaki, or "Adult wrapping," sees the subject swaddled cosily, even tightly, in a muslin-like cloth. The aim is to "alleviate posture problems and stiffness," reports the BBC, and it's exploding in popularity in Japan.

"The reason why Otonamaki was invented was because some people were worried about babies struggling or feeling claustrophobic while being wrapped up," says Orie Matsuo of Kyoko Proportion, one of several companies that offer Otonamaki to its customers. "We thought if adults were rolled up like them, they could experience how good it feels." And if customer feedback is anything to go by, Otonamaki is certainly proving successful.

The psychological dimensions speak for themselves, whispering from within their calm white cocoon.

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Orange alligator alarms South Carolina, internet

An orange alligator has taken up residence in a pond near Charleston, reports the Associated Press, baffling experts and locals alike. The most promising hypothesis for its unnatural color is that it wintered in a rusty culvert. The timely 5-foot metaphor for mindless aggression, complete with tiny stumpy extremities, will shed its skin "soon," assuming it survives long enough to do so.

Photo: Steve Tatum Read the rest

Global Shark Tracker

Never be caught unawares by a shark again with the Global Shark Tracker. There are apps for mobile platforms, but it doesn't work very well on a small display. Always go with a bigger boat.

In a collaborative environment established by Founding Chairman and Expedition Leader Chris Fischer, OCEARCH shares real-time data through OCEARCH’s Global Shark Tracker, inspires current and future generations of explorers, scientists, and stewards of the ocean, and enables leading researchers and institutions to generate previously unattainable data. OCEARCH has completed 26 worldwide expeditions.

In 2015, OCEARCH open sourced the data on the Global Shark Tracker to 2.3 million users, achieved an annual global reach of more than 12.2 billion media impressions, a Facebook reach of 150 million impressions, and a Twitter reach of 36 million impressions.

OCEARCH expeditions and digital outreach platforms are enabled through the support of Costa Sunglasses, YETI, Yamaha, Contender, SAFE Boats, and oneQube.

You can follow the OCEARCH tagged sharks by accessing the near-real time, free online Global Shark Tracker, by downloading the Global Shark Tracker App available for Apple and Android platforms, or by following OCEARCH on all social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.

As fascinating as the map is, its creators are described as unscientific Jacques Cousteau wannabes whose methods of tagging sharks are held in some disrepute.

“Shark Wranglers” is the same crew (minus Dr. Michael Domeier) formerly featured on the show “Shark Men” on the National Geographic Channel, which itself used to be called “Expedition: Great White.” These guys specialize in a unique, possibly unnecessarily-invasive procedure to catch and tag large sharks.
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"Hyperbolic tiling": can you escape from an extradimensional prison?

The only thing at Hypernom.com appears to be a 3D fractal cage. You can move toward the edge with the WASD and arrow keys. But as you approach it, a new level of detail pops in and you seem no closer to the perimeter. Approached as a game, there is a "trick" to escaping—but I'm not sure you're supposed to. Press numbers to change the forms that bind you. There are all sorts of things going on like this. Read the rest

Seafood-related queries from own internet-connected vending machines brought college network to its knees

A university, mercifully left unnamed, blew off complaints from students about its slow network. When the problem became too bad to ignore, their IT team found the culprit thanks to a "sudden big interest in seafood-related domains."

The firewall analysis identified over 5,000 discrete systems making hundreds of DNS lookups every 15 minutes. Of these, nearly all systems were found to be living on the segment of the network dedicated to our IoT infrastructure. With a massive campus to monitor and manage, everything from light bulbs to vending machines had been connected to the network for ease of management and improved efficiencies. While these IoT systems were supposed to be isolated from the rest of the network, it was clear that they were all configured to use DNS servers in a different subnet. ... botnet spread from device to device by brute forcing default and weak passwords. Once the password was known, the malware had full control of the device and would check in with command infrastructure for updates and change the device’s password – locking us out of the 5,000 systems.

The Internet of Hacked Things strikes again! I'm sure some content filtering and updating passwords will do the trick. Read the rest

80-year-old lady surprised when TSA finds sword inside her walking cane

The AP reports that an 80-year-old South Carolina woman had no idea her cane contained a sword until she attempted to board a plane and it was inspected by TSA staff.

News outlets report that Transportation Security Administration regional spokesman Mark Howell recounted the incident Thursday at Myrtle Beach International Airport as part of an effort to highlight examples of dangerous items recently carried by passengers departing the airport.

Howell told reporters secret swords are not actually that uncommon a discovery for TSA screeners since people sometimes buy the canes at thrift stores without realizing there's a sword inside.

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"Debate Me": parody of internet manliness gurus/dorks

Something Awful has a guest column from one of the manosphere types netizens cannot fail to be familiar with in 2017.

DEBATE ME.

That's right. I've been powering up these logical brain lasers for hours now just to tear through your fallacies like so much tissue paper. Let me set the stage: my house, seven hours, a webcam, and you and me, duking it out with truth-fists. A jury of my choosing, made up of my peers. The loser gives $10,000 to whatever charity deals with the most tragic of cancers.

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I found the best rug tape

After trying several brands of anti-slip rug tape, I can assertively report that the Roberts brand Rug Gripper Slip Tape is the only one that was any good. Read the rest

Review: Lenovo Yoga Book

Lenovo's Yoga Book is the most striking personal computer I've seen in years. More than the original iPhone, or Sony's X505, or the Messagepad, here's technology that seems a few years ahead of schedule. It's compact, attractive and thinner than anything else that might be called a laptop. Imagine two hinged pieces of black glass, one of which glows with the internet and the other with Okudagrams, and you have the Yoga Book. Read the rest

Nicolas Cage emotes

It's from 2014, but it still works: Nicolas Cage Losing His Shit. Warning: salty language. For reference: Jack Nicholson Losing His Shit. Read the rest

New Mac-scented candle reportedly smells like a standard candle

The New Mac Candle is a hand-poured, 100% soy 9-ounce candle offering 45-hours of burn time with notes of mint, peach, basil, lavender, mandarin and sage. It's $24.

Here it is reviewed by staff at The Verge, who all have different opinions on what it smells like, until they're told what it's supposed to be, whereupon they agree it smells nothing like a new Mac.

I remember distinctly the scent in question: notes of adhesives and hot-pressed cardboard with a delicious aftertaste of styrene. Maybe the candle smells like a New Mac if you poured an artisanal cocktail on one? Read the rest

The theme song to Duck Tales but with Alex Jones ranting about Chemtrails

@hateshaliek: "i started singing 'chemtrails' in the tune to the ducktales theme a half hour ago so i just had to make this real quick:"

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Laptop has fake subwoofer

In this video, a mini subwoofer on the bottom of a laptop turns out to be a cosmetic divot impressed into the casing of a removable optical drive. The "subwoofer" is just a grill with a hole looking into the divot. Fans of the manufacturer have a range of superb excuses, such as it being a cleverly-disguised airflow structure. [via] Read the rest

How to cover stubborn stains on basement floors

Just paint daisies over them. Do it. Do it now! Read the rest

Gifts for Lovers in the Death Throes of The American Republic

Gifts for Lovers in the Death Throes of The American Republic

Share a final candle-flicker of joy before the annihilation begins: Twitter / Facebook.

Silver heart pill container pendant / $100

Compartment will fit 6 small antipsychotic pills comfortably.

Jasmine Absolute Essential Oil / $55

An uplifting, hopeful, and romantic scent. Beautiful as a pick me up, or an aphrodisiac. — Xeni

Personalized End Grain Chopping Block / $190

This personally engraved chopping block is to die for! As you shall, in the brutal civil war portended by the election of Donald Trump. — Rob

Square, lightweight plastic flask from Stanley / $15

Sturdy, multicolored flasks that go around the world with you, perfect for a sneaky V-day cocktail with your sweetie (Previously) — Cory

The Womanizer: comes with a "100% orgasm guarantee"

It's not a vibrator. It's a gadget that suckles the clitoris. Vanessa Marin, a licensed psychotherapist specializing in sex therapy, said it "induces powerful orgasms in a shockingly short amount of time." — Mark

Barry White: All-Time Greatest Hits / $4

Want to set the mood? Here's the soundtrack your evening needs. — Jason

Defenders Mushroom Extract Blend / $35

Say it with shrooms! This is a high-quality Asian medicinal mushroom extract tonic, an exotic blend with purported adaptogenic properties. It may brighten up your brain and help you cope with stress. Chaga, Reishi, Shiitake, Maitake and Turkey Tail. — Xeni

Key Knife / $12

A blade cleverly hidden in a key-shaped handle, which many report having successfully taken through TSA checkpoints — Cory

Flashing LED Heart Kit / $10

Solder up a special something for your loved one or, better yet, have a romantic maker date and do it yourselves. Read the rest

John Yoo, government lawyer who OK'd torture, thinks Trump is "executive power run amok"

John Yoo authored the "Torture Memos" which provided the government with legal advice on getting away with torturing prisoners. Whenever the media needs someone to exemplify "conscious amorality in support of state power," he's our man. Writing in the New York Times, though, he thinks Trump is "running amok."
after the order was issued, his adviser Rudolph Giuliani disclosed that Mr. Trump had initially asked for “a Muslim ban,” which would most likely violate the Constitution’s protection for freedom of religion or its prohibition on the state establishment of religion, or both — no mean feat. Had Mr. Trump taken advantage of the resources of the executive branch as a whole, not just a few White House advisers, he would not have rushed out an ill-conceived policy made vulnerable to judicial challenge.

Remember: you still have to take a shot when the Times calls it "enhanced interrogation," and drink the whole bottle when Yoo says it. Read the rest

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