We all know the dangers, but we're addicted: URL shorteners make links dependent on third parties whose business security, reliability and trustworthiness are ever in doubt. And it just so happens that the most popular URL-shortening suffix, .ly, is under the family control of Libya's mercurial dictator.
All the way back to 6200 BC, and probably before that, humans made mirrors. In Turkey, they polished obsidian; in Egypt, copper. Over at Smithsonian, beloved Boing Boing contributor Clive Thompson explores the technological and cultural history of the mirror. From Smithsonian: During the medieval period in Europe, paintings of vice would include women gazing… READ THE REST
Live from space, watch it now: nasa.gov/live. READ THE REST
SpaceX is delaying its planned second astronaut flight by a day because of high wind and weather conditions that threaten recovery and recycling of the rocket booster. The launch has been pushed to Sunday night. The news of a launch scrub came late Friday after SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted he received mixed test results… READ THE REST
Back in the days before schools, airlines, and law enforcement considered them weapons, most people used to carry around a Swiss Army knife, or another such multi-tool, for handling all those daily problems and fixes. Now, with our lives filled with gadgets and tech, we're all swimming in cables, connectors, plugins, and more to make… READ THE REST
From artists to serious design pros, color isn't just about fun. It's a livelihood. And, there's a lot more to it than being able to point out the differences between a royal blue and a sky blue. Can you tell the difference between a blood-red and a garnet red? How about if you throw cherry… READ THE REST
Every holiday season is marked by a few "it" toys. While you can always count on a hot new next-gen gaming console to spark a frenzy, it's not often that those hot toy items are almost as coveted by adults as they are kids. There's a reason that CNET called the Robosen T9 Programmable Robot… READ THE REST