Petition: David Attenborough to change his name to "Boaty McBoatface"

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After the public overwhelmingly voted to name a new British Natural Environment Research Council vessel "Boaty McBoatface," the UK government pulled a switcheroo, declaring the will of the people to be secondary to the judgment of humourless bureaucrats, and summarily named the ship the R.R.S. David Attenborough. Read the rest

Qantas delays flight because of wifi network named "Detonation Device"

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QF481, from Melbourne to Perth, was delayed last week because a passenger spotted a wifi network called "Detonation Device." Read the rest

Baby names generated by a neural network

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In 2015, Stanford computer science PhD candidate Andrej Karpathy decided to test out some neural network tools he'd been experimenting with, and set them to generating plausible baby names. Read the rest

Burbank airport changes name, ditches "Bob Hope"

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My favorite airport in America is changing its name to "Hollywood Burbank Airport," removing the name of racist, reactionary old-timey boob Bob Hope, whose name has been judged not to resonate with the modern traveller. Read the rest

Society of synthetic linguists explain to court, in Klingon, why Klingon shouldn't be copyrightable

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Last month, I wrote about Paramount's lawsuit against Axanar, a crowdfunded Star Trek fan-film. Read the rest

Funny "meeting speak cheat sheet"

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Remember Sarah Cooper's brilliant "10 Tricks to Appear Smart in Meetings"? Here are a few choice bits from her new "Meeting Speak Cheat Sheet":

• “This wasn’t on my calendar” = I deleted this from my calendar

• “To your earlier point…” = I’m kissing your ass

• “That said…” = We’re still not changing anything

• “Let’s circle back later” = I need this to be over

Previously:

• "15 tricks to appear smart in emails" Read the rest

Weird has a weird history

Keep etymology wyrd! Er, weird. (The Endless Knot)

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Kindle Unlimited is being flooded with 3,000-page garbage books that suck money out of the system

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Amazon's Kindle Unlimited service allows subscribers to download as many books as they want, and then pays writers based on the number of their pages that readers have read. Read the rest

Paramount wants to kill a fan-film by claiming copyright on the Klingon language

Say what now?

The crowdfunded, critically successful fan-film Prelude to Axanar has been in Paramount's cross-hairs since late last year, when the studio filed suit against the film's producers.

Read the rest

216 "untranslatable" emotional words from non-English languages

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University of East London pysch professor Tim Lomas has assembled a list of words referring to emotional states from the world's languages that have no correlate in English. Read the rest

The perfect suffix for your "cyber-" buzzword

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Adding "cyber-" to any initiative is a sure-fire budget- and approval-winner, at least in the military industrial complex. If you're struggling to figure out what to use on your opening slide, here's a handy crib-sheet. Read the rest

Dictionary.com to stop saying pow wows are where Native Americans practice “magic”

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Sometimes, the right thing happens. Read the rest

How to write about scientists who are women

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The "Finkbeiner Test," created in 2013 by science writers Ann Finkbeiner and Christie Aschwanden, challenges science writers who are profiling scientists who happen to be women to write about them without mentioning their gender, childcare arrangements, husband's occupation, etc. Read the rest

Associated Press Style: No more capitalizing internet and web

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On Saturday, the Associated Press announced that in the 2016 edition of their widely-used AP Stylebook guide to English grammar and usage, the words "internet" and "web" will no longer be capitalized.

"The changes reflect a growing trend toward lowercasing both words, which have become generic terms," AP Standards Editor Thomas Kent told Poynter.

Please note that Boing Boing will continue to capitalize Information Superhighway. Read the rest

Freshman Missouri Rep almost made it 3 months before introducing bill urging members to say "fiscal," not "physical"

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Rep. Tracy McCreery [D] had served in the Missouri house of reps for nearly a whole quarter before she introduced H.R. 1220, which urges her fellow lawmakers to stop pronouncing "fiscal," as "physical." Read the rest

Trains Botting: twitterbot posts a new emoji train landscape every 4 hours

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Trains Botting/@choochoobot is a new twitterbot from prolific botmaster and EFF staffer Parker Higgins. Read the rest

Chase freezes man's bank account because his dog's name, 'Dash,' looked like 'Daesh'

Seriously, guys? [Shutterstock.com]

Bruce Francis transferred some money to his dog walker to pay for services to his pit bull, and wrote the dog's name, "Dash," in the notes field.

Read the rest

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