As Office of US Courts withdraws records for five top benches, can we make them open?


Rogue archivist Carl Malamud writes, "The Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts has announced that they are removing the archives for 5 important courts from their infamous PACER system. PACER is the ten-cent-per-page access to U.S. District and Appeals courts dockets and opinions."

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3D geology of Britain--all of it!--implemented in Minecraft

GravelMany countries have been surface-mapped in Minecraft, but here's one that goes right down to the bedrock, courtesy of the British Geological Survey: "Glaciofluvial deposits and superficial deposits of mainly gravelly composition are represented by Gravel."

Snappy response to sexist harrasser


Frank Wu writes, "Brianna Wu is a game developer and a frequent writer about gender issues in tech. As such, she frequently receives harassing, unpleasant emails. She got pissed off and wrote an awesome response to one here."

I got a harassing email today, and decided to respond with this letter. (Thanks, Frank!)

Journalists killed in the last decade, by country

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619, mostly locals.

On restoring Star Wars

Everyone knows about George Lucas's habit for messing with the Star Wars trilogy, but not how hard it is to see the unmolested originals--he even refused to give a copy to the National Film Registry.

Judge: SWAT team can't claim immunity after using excessive force

Police might be able to bash your home's door down and summarily execute you, but that doesn't mean they can use their qualified immunity to escape even the possibility of legal redress.

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GOP's vote-gettin' 8-bit platformer (isn't very good)

In "Mission Majority, you -- a little 8-bit elephant in a track outfit -- run through a minimalist Mario-field, trying to jump on top of ghosts hung with signs that say "TAXER." If they catch you, you die (if you play at all, you likely die inside, anyway). (Thanks, Joseph)

No charges for off-duty cop who killed teen

Rey Garza approached a "suspicious" car while wearing plain clothes, gun drawn, and allegedly without identifying himself as a cop. What happened to the teen driver is depressingly predictable.

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Hyperlapse: Handheld timelapse from Instagram

Hyperlapse is a free iPhone app that lets you make stunning, stable timelapse movies without a tripod.

Dragoncon cosplayers team up with EFF to fight for anonymity


It's called "Project Secret Identity," and it's a joint effort with Southeastern Browncoats, ; the Harry Potter Alliance, the Baker Street Babes, Wattpad, , Organization for Transformative Works, and IO9.

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WATCH: 23 second horror movie

Cicada 3301 is a mysterious organization seeking "highly intelligent individuals"

Wikipedia: "Cicada 3301 is a name given to an enigmatic organization that on three occasions has posted a set of complex puzzles and ARGs to recruit capable cryptanalysts from the public.

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Police mistakenly called on war game developer

A Bristol, UK apartment building manager called police after seeing a tenant's whiteboard diagrams of a planned nuclear attack on Washington. Turns out that the tenant, Henry Smith, is a software developer working on a game called "Global Thermonuclear War." Ahem, I can tell you right now "the only winning move is not to play." From The Guardian:
366828db 45dd 4ff2 8536 209c78a673ea 460x276“At first I was ridiculously frightened by the whole thing,” he told the Guardian. “When they said they’d told the police I absolutely bricked it. I ran home to check if the police had raided the house or something. It was definitely very frightening to think that the police had a report in their system alleging that I was up to something suspicious involving nuclear warheads. Knowing how the police here deal with suspected terrorists, I was worried they’d do a dawn raid or worse. It was genuinely scary for a while.”

WATCH: lungs of smoker vs non-smoker

WATCH: Dog and parrot battle over yogurt container

And this is how wars start. (Via Arbroath)