Beautiful imaginary Hungarian money

Barbara Bernát designed a series of fanciful Hungarian euro notes for her MA project at the University of West Hungary. Read the rest

Scientific American and fansubbers help video spread in Hungary

Dean from Amara writes, "Editors at Scientific American noticed they were getting a TON of hits on the video What Happens to Your Body after You Die? To their surprise, the majority of the views were originating in Hungary." Read the rest

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100K Hungarians march against Internet tax

When Hungary's government announced a per-megabyte tax on Internet traffic, people were pissed; a week later, 100,000 people took to the streets to let Prime Minister Viktor Orbán know how they felt about the proposal. Read the rest

Hungary's Internet tax arouses mass opposition

The economically precarious country has a remarkably low rate of corporate tax, and makes up the difference with high, regressive consumption taxes, including the one of the highest rates of VAT in Europe. Read the rest

Mind-bending animated GIF illusions

David "Davidope" Szakaly is a talented Hungarian animator who specializes in trippy, freaky GIFs that pulse and twist and melt your brain. Read the rest

Spooky Hungarian tram-terminus

This spooky photo appears to depict the 1970s-era Tram 58 terminus in Zugliget, Budapest, Hungary. The original source isn't clear to me (if you know it, please note it in the comments so I can re-attribute the image, which appears all over the net without attribution). There's a plan underway to renovate the tumbledown terminus and turn it into a shopping mall.

Budapest Trolley Station (via Disquieting Metamorphasis) Read the rest

AT-ST steampunk desk-lamp

The AT-SP Steampunk Walker desk lamp is for sale in WWWorks's Etsy store, and ships from Budapest. Its legs are jointed, as is its brass boiler. It's 35cm tall, and sells for $1,250. Read the rest

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Neo-Nazi MEP from Hungary discovers he is Jewish

A Hungarian neo-Nazi leader has had to retire from professional antisemitism because he discovered he was Jewish. Csanad Szegedi, who had decried "Jewishness" in Hungary's political class, and referred to Jews as "lice-infested, dirty murderers," was outed by a rival within the neo-Nazi movement, who revealed that Szegedi's maternal grandmother was a Jewish Auschwitz survivor, making him Jewish as well. From an AP story in the NYT:

The fallout of Szegedi's ancestry saga has extended to his business interests. Jobbik executive director Gabor Szabo is pulling out of an Internet site selling nationalist Hungarian merchandise that he owns with Szegedi. Szabo said his sister has resigned as Szegedi's personal assistant.

In the 2010 tape, former convict Zoltan Ambrus is heard telling Szegedi that he has documents proving Szegedi is Jewish. The right-wing politician seems genuinely surprised by the news — and offers EU funds and a possible EU job to Ambrus to hush it up.

Ambrus, who served time in prison on a weapons and explosives conviction, apparently rejected the bribes. He said he secretly taped the conversation as part of an internal Jobbik power struggle aimed at ousting Szegedi from a local party leadership post. The party's reaction was swift.

Hungary Far-Right Leader Discovers Jewish Roots Read the rest

Trees stained by a toxic spill, with the high-tide line aligned to the horizon

This image comes from The Line, a book of photos by Palíndromo Mészaros, "a Spanish photographer and architecture student whose life jumps between Madrid and Budapest." It shows the high-tide line of an aluminum spill from a chemical factory in Hungary, which flooded out a forest in Ajka. Mészaros lines up the red residue with the horizon, producing an effect that is beautiful and terrible and delightfully disorienting. The book, which is produced on demand through Blurb is €127.92, and is printed on Proline Pearl photo paper - 32'4 x 27'6 cm.

"The Line photobook" (via Reddit) Read the rest

Making a spider-lamp out of 8 cheap Ikea anglepoise knockoffs

Budapest designer Petra Nikoletti bought eight Ikea Forsa lamps and a salad bowl and had a locksmith precision fit them into a "spider lamp": "I bought 8 Ikea FORSÅ table lamp, and only used the arms and the heads. A custom-made cylinder is holding them and a Blanda Blank Serving Bowl (20 cm, painted black) is hiding the wires. A black hollow shaft is connecting the lamp to the ceiling, the cover at the end is also a Blanda Blank, but the smallest one."

I'm a bit confused about the locksmith part -- is that a translation error, or are locksmiths really an untapped source of high-quality machining and enamelling?

Spider lamp from FORSÅ Read the rest

Stamp semaphore as early emoticons

From an 1890 edition of the Szarvas és vidéke, a weekly Hungarian newspaper, an explanation of the "stamp code" used to signal one's intention when sending mash notes and such through the Emperor's post.

The secrets of the language of stamps. For all those who are in the situation of Hero and Leander, and similarly to them can only exchange secret signs about the feelings of their hearts, here we publish the secrets of the language of stamps. If the stamp stands upright in the upper right corner of the card or envelope, it means: I wish your friendship. Top right, across: Do you love me? Top right, upside down: Don’t write me any more. Top right, thwart: Write me immediately. Top right, upright [once more again???]: Your love makes me happy. Top left, across: My heart belongs to someone else. Top left, upright: I love you. Bottom left, across: Leave me alone in my grief. In line with the name: Accept my love. Same place, across: I wish to see you. Same place, upside down: I love someone else. – We hope that besides the inventor of the “new language” there would be other persons too who would eventually use it.

Poemas del río Wang: The language of stamps (via Neatorama) Read the rest