XKCD watch-face for Moto 360


Spam writes, "I'm a fan of XKCD and so I decided to put together a watchface for the Moto 360 based on xkcd.com/now because I really like Randall Munroe's concept for a simple world clock."

Read the rest

Suspended bee: A photo shared in the Boing Boing Flickr Pool

15498540096_57fcc3ba25_k

"Bourdon, October 2014."

A photo shared in the Boing Boing Flickr Pool by reader Bernard d'Astous.

Bunnies vs. Kittens

cats

Sometimes rabbits are friends with cats. Sometimes, they are not.

Read the rest

The dirty secret of Google's self-driving cars


They've 700,000 miles, but mostly the same few thousand miles, over and over again -- because the cars only work if every single light, piece of street furniture, and other detail is mapped and verified by armies of human and computer analysts, and when anything changes, the mapping needs to be re-created.

Read the rest

"Hive" (middle class colony collapse)


Jud Turner writes, "'Hive (middle class colony collapse)' is the latest in my series of sculptures depicting hallucinatory factory scenes, and ponders the loss of bees and an ever-shrinking middle class, both likely results of modern industrial methods and monopoly capitalism."

Read the rest

TARDIS and Dalek lotion-bars


Etsy seller Wizard at Work makes delightful solid lotion bars in a variety of shapes, most notably this Doctor Who two-pack featuring a Dalek and a TARDIS. Made with only four ingredients (sweet almond oil, beeswax, shea butter and cocoa butter) and $8 per set. (via Geeky Merch)

Sketchy ethics of scientists involved with "brain training"

Jeff sez, 'Scientists consulting with companies that sell brain games "falls in the same kind of category as medical researchers' taking money from drug companies,' says a Harvard educational-neuroscience professor. Or, as other scholars contend, should academics work with a growing industry to make their products better, and make sure their marketing isn't over-hyped. The Chronicle of Higher Ed delves into the science of brain training."

Read the rest

Florida man, shot in chest by former lover, takes selfie

Priorities. "As he lay bleeding, Noll raised the phone and snapped a selfie."(via)

High-tech carnival with lasers, fire, robots and big games comes to LA 10/22-10/26

steam

From my friend Brent Bushnell of Two Bit Circus:

A modern take on the traveling circus, STEAM Carnival is a crazy reimagining of the classic carnival using high-tech amusement and amazing inventions. Attractions include a midway loaded with lasers mazes, walls of buttons, huge leisure games, a Fireball Dunk Tank, a robot bartender and other interactive experiences. There are also hands-on workshops, contests, and artisanal carnival food. The inaugural event is in Los Angeles 10/25-10/26. On 10/23 there’s a special Hacker Preview — a free sneak peak of STEAM Carnival aimed specifically at developers, entrepreneurs, and engineers. IBM is sponsoring and has allocated prize money for app demos relating to games, art, music, and learning. They’ll get exposure to a large audience, and could actually win money!

STEAM Carnival Boing Boing readers can use the code BOING for $5 off

Spooky lips


Just one of the many outstanding creations of Eva Senín Pernas, a talented make-up artist. (via Seanan McGuire)

Giant carnivorous kangaroos, and why we dance when we hold our pee

On This Week in Science:

Kiki talked stem cells; not the controversial side of things, but the straight up science of figuring out more about these populations of cells as they exist inside our bodies throughout our lives. It looks like we have a lot to learn. Also, she brought up a story about using filament proteins from nerve cells to produce brush-like coatings for materials. Better living through... biology?

Justin talked about finding the base materials for a potential new family of antibiotics in bacteria found on turkeys. Then he delved into the immune system strengthening powers of estrogen in women, and pills full of poo for people with bowel issues.

Blair's Animal Corner brought collaborative hunting by crocodiles into sharp focus, as well as news about the collapsibility of bird wings, and how geckos climb down.

The second half of the show was hot with talk of western droughts, oil rigs outpacing coral reefs for fish productivity, giant carnivorous kangaroos, a new idea about asymmetry involving the Higgs particle, Ebola updates, and why we dance when we hold our pee.

TWIS shownotes

Illustrators depictions of gerrymandered maps

"Spawn of Gerrymander" is a series in which some of our favorite illustrators use their talents to help us see the true shape of political mapmaking in the twenty-first century:

Over the course of this week, this series will present graphic visualizations of six gerrymandered U.S. Congressional districts, created by six dynamite illustrators: Joe Alterio, Steve Brodner, Lisa Congdon, Jennifer Daniel, Oliver Munday, and Leif Parsons.

Above and below, Steve Brodner's "Bleeding Liberty" map for Pennsylvania's Seventh Congressional District.

Interview with Delilah S. Dawson! Whimseydark, Vampires and Ikea

We had a lovely time chatting with author Delilah S. Dawson about her struggles with Ikea furniture, brilliance on Twitter and the coining of Whimsydark. There's also a fair amount about blud and humans.

Full show notes at Sword & Laser
Support us on Patreon!

Giant panda masturbation resolved [NSFP]

A phenomenon that had long been suspected, but never directly observed, now finally videoed by a World Wildlife Federation photographer in Sichuan province.

Read the rest

Incredible footage of gunfire in Canadian Parliament

At least one gunman and a soldier are dead today after exchanges of fire in and around Parliament buildings in Ottawa, Canada. This footage was taken by a Globe and Mail reporter at the scene.

Buildings in Ottawa’s downtown core are under lockdown after the crack of gunshots rang through the halls of Parliament Hill’s Centre Block and a gunman fired on soldiers guarding Canada’s main war memorial.

Ottawa police confirmed that they were investigating “several” shootings in downtown Ottawa. There are conflicting reports of how many shooters appear to be involved in the attack on the heart of Canada’s federal government.

USA Today reports that there were "multiple reports of shootings," followed by a pursuit into Parliament Hill "sending bystanders and members of Parliament scrambling for safety."

In Ottawa, police confirmed a man opened fire at the National War Memorial outside the government complex shortly before 10 a.m., hitting a soldier who was standing guard. Jason Kenney, an MP and Minister of Employment, Social Development & Multiculturalism, tweeted: "Condolences to family of the soldier killed, (and) prayers for the Parliamentary guard wounded," Kenney wrote. "Canada will not be terrorized or intimidated."

Ottawa police Constable Marc Soucy could not verify whether police were looking for multiple shooters, as some media outlets were reporting. He said only that the response was ongoing throughout Ottawa.

The Globe's Josh Wingrove on the lockdown:

Here's a statement from the Ottawa police:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, October 22, 2014 1:45pm

(Ottawa)—The Ottawa Police Service and Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) responded to reports of shooting incidents this morning in the downtown area. Police can now confirm that incidents occurred at the National War Memorial and on Parliament Hill.

Contrary to earlier reports no incident occurred near the Rideau Centre.

One shooting victim succumbed to injuries. He was a member of the Canadian Forces. Our thoughts and prayers are with him and his loved ones.

Next of kin notification is underway and as such, the victim’s identification will not be released.

One male suspect has also been confirmed deceased. There is no further update on injuries at this time.

This is an ongoing joint police operation and there is no one in custody at this time.

Ottawa residents are asked to stay away from the downtown area while the investigation continues. If you work in one of the downtown buildings, follow the instructions from the building management you are in.

A number of RCMP and Federal government buildings are also closed to the public; as is Ottawa City Hall and all Ottawa Police stations.

The Ottawa Police Service wants to speak to witnesses of today’s shooting incidents. Witnesses are to call Ottawa Police at 613-236-1222, ext 5493.

Those with tips regarding the shooting incidents, or those looking to report suspicious activity, can call 613-236-1222 or call 9-1-1.

Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers at 613-233-8477(TIPS), toll free at 1-800-222-8477 or by downloading the Ottawa Police iOS app.