Boing Boing 

Not just guitars: United breaks monks

After four hours of dealing with United customer service, Brother Noah got so fed up trying to figure out why the airline had stranded Brother John Baptist in Malawi that he "manifested anger."

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Coach-minus: a new low in high-flying travel


An unnamed airline is said to be planning a "coach-minus" service that features smaller, more crowded seats. They say they're providing cheaper tickets to passengers who demand it.

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United and Orbitz sue Skiplagged, a service you should totally use

Skiplagged finds cheap one-way fares by surfacing weird airline pricing strategies, like pricing a NY-SFO-Lake Tahoe flight cheaper than an NY-SFO flight, so you book all the way through to Tahoe, debark at SFO, and walk away from the final leg.

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Worst US airlines for baggage loss and mishaps

airlines

The latest DoT Air Travel Consumer Report ranks America's airlines by "mishandled" baggage incidents as a fraction of passengers carried -- the worst is Envoy Air, the best is Virgin.

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Buy your own TSA-surplus pornoscanner for $8K


Remember when the TSA spent $113K on Rapiscan pornoscanners that turned out not to work? Now they're selling them off for $8,000.

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Fantastically detailed Boeing 777 model made from manila folders


Luca Iaconi-Stewart is building a "1:60 model of an Air India Boeing 777-300ER made entirely from manila file folders," with an unbelievable level of detail (it even has working mechanisms!)

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How to fold the world-record-setting paper airplane "Suzanne"

Here's John M Collins narrating the technique he used to create "Suzanne," his world-championship-winning paper airplane, which set a distance record in 2012 -- the whole thing, along with many more super-advanced paper aviation techniques are laid out in his book, The New World Champion Paper Airplane Book: Featuring the World Record-Breaking Design, with Tear-Out Planes to Fold and Fly.

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Old Tabasco ad


Sets the mouth to watering, it does. An image of the one true sauce, before which all other sauces are mockers, from the Vintage Ads LJ group.

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PSA: Escaping from Gogo's roach-motel business model

Last month, during my many-city book tour, I signed up for Gogo's in-flight wifi service. Today I discovered that it's much harder to get shut of it.

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Ferguson's no-fly zone created to ground news-choppers


Freedom of Information Act requests from the Associated Press reveal that St Louis police requested the no-fly zone to prevent the press from getting overhead footage of the crackdown on demonstrations, and that the FAA was complicit in crafting an illegal ban that allowed commercial aircraft to land at the airport while still grounding the news-birds.

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Kickstarting Night Witches, an RPG about WWII Soviet airwomen


Night Witches is the latest game from Jason Morningstar, creator of the excellent caper/heist game Fiasco.

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LAX delays flight because someone's wifi network had scary terrorist name

Someone in the waiting area for AA's LAX-London flight created a network called "Al-Quida Free Terror Nettwork," so "out of an abundance of caution," everyone ran around like headless chickens for a while trying to figure out where the network name was coming from (cue horror music: "He's broadcasting from INSIDE THE TERMINAL!" Dun dun DUUUUN!).

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TSA demands to search man who's already flown

Minnesota's Kahler Nygard drew a Spirit Air boarding car with the dreaded "SSSS" extra-search marker, and halfway to Denver, Spirit and/or the TSA decided he hadn't been searched properly (he says he was), so they panicked and dragged him off the plane in Denver for another search because he might have been a time-traveller who could harm a plane after getting off of it.

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House with a supersonic jet in its back yard


Gautam Trivedi spotted this bit of real-world Russo-cyberpunk: a supersonic jet retired to the back yard of a stately Russian mansion.

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TSA: "please verify that your used cane is not a sword before flying"

Kevin Underhill nails it: "Anyone who does not know their cane conceals a sword or dagger (almost certainly an elderly or disabled person with a second-hand cane) poses no threat, while anyone who does know it will not need, want, or follow this advice."

Malaysia Airlines's near-empty planes ply the world's skies, losing $2M/day


Malaysia Airlines, who suffered the unprecedented and tragic loss of two jets this year, is having an understandably hard time attracting passengers; though the circumstances of the two losses do not appear to be related to negligence or anything other than terrible, awful random chance.

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Security researchers buy pornoscanner, demonstrate how to sneak in guns & bombs


(Rapiscan images showing a subject carrying no weapon (left) versus a .380 ACP pistol sewn to the side of his pants leg, (right) which is practically invisible in the scan)

Researchers from UCSD, the U Michigan, and Johns Hopkins will present their work on the Rapiscan Secure 1000 at Usenix Security tomorrow; the Secure 1000 isn't used in airports anymore, but it's still in courts, jails, and government security checkpoints (researchers can't yet get their hands on the millimeter machines used at airports).

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