A long time ago, Veronica Belmont was featured in a blooper reel for her old TV show in which she clowned around with a Cthulhu t-shirt, wiggling back and forth and saying "So lifelike." A creepy Internet person turned the moment into a GIF that has followed her around ever since, so that other creepy Internet people post it every time she opens her mouth online, and creepy Internet porn companies use it in their ads. Read the rest
Matt Reimer's homebrew autonomous tractor uses open source components to accomplish the kind of automation that John Deere's super-proprietary tractors are known for. Read the rest
You may have heard that "screen time" -- time with TV, phones, tablets, computers, or video games -- is bad for babies and toddlers. Recently, the American Academy of Pediatrics reversed course on their previous advice about screen time for kids under two."
Evan Griffin's dad borrowed his Gopro for a Vegas holiday and walked the strip for days with the camera on the end of a selfie-stick -- pointed the wrong way. Read the rest
Magicpeacelove writes, "Shin Lim, who created the extraordinary card act that took Penn & Teller (and the magic world) by storm has just released another rather stunning card act, this one in tribute to Paris. It looks like CGI but it's not; just beautiful magic done by a young master." Read the rest
Journalist/educator Lisa Rein is looking for $20,000 to complete a documentary called "From DeadDrop to SecureDrop," which chronicles the development of the last technology project that Aaron Swartz worked on: a tool to help whistleblowers and journalists communicate and exchange documents in secret. Read the rest
Gus writes, "November 2-6 was Media Literacy Week, that great traditional festival of questioning everything we read and talking back to the TV. OK, so it's only ten years old... and this is the first year it's been formally observed in the United States, which has long lagged behind other English-speaking countries in media literacy initiatives (even South Africa before the fall of apartheid!) [pdf]. But why shouldn't it become a tradition? It makes a great lead-in to Buy Nothing Day at the end of November." Read the rest
The Wizard of Northampton in dialog with John Higgs, author of Stranger Than We Can Imagine: Making Sense of the Twentieth Century, describing HP Lovecraft's curious, twisted grasp of the awful anxieties of 20th century America, and how this created the racist, horror-flecked prose that resonates even today. (via m1k3y) Read the rest
In a 1959 interview with Mike Wallace, The Twilight Zone creator Rod Serling described his experiences fighting the "antiseptic, rigid" qualities of censorship.
In this clip above, he describes "precensorship"—what would now be more often described as self-censorship—the prior knowledge of the writer of what he cannot get through, and therefore shies away from.
Here's the full show:
It's when you carry a frame and door to someone else's door, while dressed as someone who's staying at home and giving out candy; you interpose your door between you and their door, ring the bell, and when they answer, they're confronted with your door, with a PLEASE KNOCK sign. They knock, you open up, and offer them candy. Trick-airity ensues. (via Reddit) Read the rest
In 2004, Helen Linehan terminated a pregnancy she had conceived with her husband, IT Crowd/Father Ted creator Graham Linehan, after discovering that the fetus had acrania and could not survive for more than an hour after the birth. As sad as the occasion was, the pair were more traumatised when the moved to Ireland shortly after and discovered that if Helen had had her abortion there, she'd have faced 16 years in prison. Read the rest
The always-brilliant David Malki ! of Wondermark writes "I love greeting cards, but what if you need one for a super unusual occasion, or have a very nuanced sentiment you want to convey? The answer: Tick-the-option greeting cards, made in the Wondermark style! They're so utilitarian, I like to think if you keep a few on hand, you'll be prepared for ANYTHING that comes up." Read the rest
Len Peralta writes, "Ken Plume, John Robinson and I have been releasing different celebrity readings of our book There's A Zombie In My Treehouse just in time for Halloween. We've been releasing one track a day for the past week and a half up until Halloween. Some of the readers include Tom Kenny (Spongebob Squarepants/Adventure Time), Billy West (Futurama), Dana Snyder (Aqua Teen Hunger Force) and the whole cast of MST3K. Upcoming celebrity readers include The Venture Brothers Doc Hammer and Jackson Public, John Hodgman and Jonathan Coulton. It's a fun read and listen for Halloween." Read the rest