Mitt Romney doesn't know how Venn diagrams work

From Sociological Images's Lisa Wade:

Mitt Romney’s campaign put out a set of graphics illustrating a “gap” between what Obama promised and what he has delivered. The graphic is in the form of a Venn diagram, a visual designed to show the overlap between two conditions...

Unfortunately, Romney’s overlapping circles are not Venn diagrams, making the campaign somewhat ridiculous and giving nerdy liberals all over America a good chuckle.


0 ohm resistor

I'm not very bright, so I can't think of a reason for a 0 ohm resistor. What are they for? Read the rest

Astronaut Don Pettit, just floatin' around in the ISS with his camera collection, like you do (photo)

Above, a NASA photo of astronaut Don Pettit, Expedition 31 flight engineer, posing with some sweet-ass digital cameras in the Cupola of the International Space Station. ISS031-E-112469 (10 June 2012).

I hereby propose that someone launch a tumblr with more photos like this, to be titled FUCK YEAH DON PETTIT.

Larger sizes at OnOrbit, via PetaPixel, via BB's sainted sysadmin Ken.

Update: is now a thing. Read the rest

Wizzywig: an excerpt from Ed Piskor's new graphic novel about a phone phreak hacker kid

In yesterday's Gweek podcast, Clive Thompson and I talked to Ed Piskor about his great new graphic Novel Wizzywig, about a young "dark side" hacker. I mentioned that I liked the scene featuring Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who make an appearance as illegal blue box salesmen dressed in their Alice in Wonderland birthday party entertainer outfits. Ed kindly gave me permission to post the excerpt here. Read the rest

Alan Alda attacks science jargon in "Flame Challenge," a science communications contest for young people (video)

In this PBS NewsHour segment, science correspondent Miles O'Brien reports on a contest launched by actor and author Alan Alda that challenges scientists to explain the science behind a flame, while flexing their communication muscles. The judges are thousands of 11-year-olds.

Below, the winning video entry: "What is a Flame," by Ben Ames, a quantum physicist working on his doctorate at the University of Innsbruck, Austria. I loved it, but more importantly, so did the kids. Read the rest

iPhone app makes a game of monitoring pain for young cancer patients

[Video Link] Canada's Hospital for Sick Children (aka SickKids) and the Cundari creative agency are developing a iPhone app called "Pain Squad" to help monitor and report physical pain and emotional wellness in young cancer patients. Snip from a post on Springwise:

Using the narrative of a police force hunting down pain, users are inducted as a rookie officer working on the case. Patients fill out a daily survey – which asks questions relating to whether they felt pain that day, how intense it was and its location – and can progress through the ranks of the force when they keep their records updated. The concept was created by Toronto-based media agency Cundari, who got stars from Rookie Blue and Flashpoint – two primetime cop shows in Canada – to appear in videos that are unlocked when patients do well and progress the narrative. By gamifying the process, the app gives patients an incentive to keep a daily journal of their pain. The app is still in the testing phase but SickKids hopes to release it later this year.

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Nine bar bets you can't lose

Paul sez, "I'm the writer and presenter of the hit BBC3 show 'The Real Hustle', and I've just released a new video to promote my one-man show, 'Lie. Cheat. Steal. Confessions of a Real Hustler' at this year's Edinburgh Festival Fringe. 'Free Drinks Forever' teaches nine entertaining proposition bets for you to fool and fleece your friends. Please cheat responsibly. See here for tickets and more information."

Paul Wilson –

(Thanks, Paul!) Read the rest

Louis CK's direct-sales concert: $6MM+ and running, and scalping all but extinguished

A report from Louis CK's no fees, no scalpers direct-sales concert tour: Mr CK is up more than $6 million, and scalping is down to less than one percent (compared with 25 percent for his other, traditional-sales events). CK has been approached by scalpers who defend their practice by saying it's legal. He replies to them in this statement to Laughspin:

Contact with these scalpers has been enlightening. They tend to respond with indignance and a defensive posture “Hey man! Scalping is NOT a crime!” We’re not treating it as a crime or even a wrong-doing. We are just competing with them, on behalf of my fans, to enforce the terms and conditions of our ticket sales and to keep the prices down. It’s worth the effort, it’s working and it’s even been kind of fun.

Which is a pretty good reply. "I'm not trying to get you outlawed, I'm trying to make you obsolete."

Louis C.K. addresses ticket scalpers: ‘It’s a tremendous risk’ (Exclusive)

(via TechDirt) Read the rest

Chip trails leads to chip thief

Benjamin Sickles, 21, was arrested Thursday after stealing snacks from a Subway restaurant near Pittsburgh, PA. To find their man. officers "followed a trail of chip bags". [WaPo] Read the rest

America's greatest trivia minds get their party on in Vegas next month

Tony says:

If you haven't heard of the Trivia Championships of North America, well, that's understandable. It's only the second year for TCONA, but this year's event, taking place from August 10-12 at Circus Circus in Las Vegas, will already be bigger, with more players, more pub quiz hosts from around the country, more medal events, more discussion panels, more game shows field-testing and casting for players, and all the general Las Vegas convention bonding and tomfoolery that typically goes on at these things.

Local pub quiz hosts from around the continent will be showing off their local flavors of bar trivia in the Pub Quiz Lounge, there's a weekend-long Quiz Bowl tournament, representatives from the Learned League, and other online trivia comunities will be doing live events, something called Knodgeball (which is, yes, a cross between trivia and dodgeball), and you'll get to hang out with Jeopardy! champions, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire winners, and others who have ascended to the top of the trivia mountain. There's also a podcast, with sample questions and details on the various events.

Registration for the whole weekend is only $150 if you book before July 25. If you're into these particular kinds of nerd games, this should be the highlight of your year.

Trivia Championships of North America | The TCONA Podcast

Take the North American Trivia Geography Kick-Off Quiz Trivia Championships of North America, July 8-10, 2011, Las Vegas Read the rest

Jackhammer Jill, the animated GIF automata

Ernie made us a Jackhammer Jill automata from pinewood and paint: "She bounces up and down like the animated GIF." Ernie wins the whole goddamned Internet.

Jackhammer Jill.wmv

(Thanks, Ernie!)

Read the rest

Grandmother's nerdy stained glass

Les Milton brags on his mom Judy Mascolo who makes fantastic "Nerd Glass." He writes, "She started doing stained glass, a common hobby amongst the adorably active elderly, and then she started making nerdier pieces for my brother (who designs video games) and my son." Nerd Glass Read the rest

Just how hot is it in the US right now?

Mark Memmott at NPR's "The Two Way" blog digs in to statistics and maps from the National Climatic Data Center to illustrate exactly how fucking hot it is in hundreds of cities around the US, as a record-setting heatwave continues. I found the data a little confusing, so I 'shooped up a "For Dummies" version for you all, above. But do read the whole post from Mark here. (via Dave Pell's NextDraft) Read the rest

Spock, Pee-Wee, and other geek plush crafts

A. Pants's "That's Sew Spock" (36" tall, fabric and stuffing) and Allison Hoffman's "Playhouse Friends" (10" and 4" tall, yarn and stuffing) are just two of the dozens of fun creations in the Sew Nerdy geek craft exhibition at Bear and Bird Boutique & Gallery in Lauderhill, Florida. You can see all of the artwork at the Sew Nerdy Flickr set, and buy many of them at Bear and Bird. Read the rest

"The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King" poster by artist Aaron Horkey, for Mondo

Check out this beautiful poster for Peter Jackson's "The Lord of the Rings," created by artist Aaron Horkey for Mondo, the collectible art boutique arm of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. The print kicks off a series that will include all LOTR films, with work by multiple artists. I really want one, but alas, the poster was only available at last night's Drafthouse screening in Austin, TX. Here's an online gallery of Horkey's illustration work. Gorgeous stuff. He's from Minnesota, and from the sound of his bio, he's a happy mutant:

Key personality traits include debilitating social ineptitude and a perverse attention to detail. Also, believes himself to have been born 100 years too late. Enjoys desolation, megafauna and transplanting sumacs. Currently ensconced in a bucolic whistle stop just west of the Mississippi, he whiles away the hours writing of himself in the third person, staring at his chore list and cultivating ulcers.

Read the rest

Rand and Ron Paul denounce net neutrality and the public domain

Rand and Ron Paul have penned an Internet Freedom manifesto that is pretty terrible. It pans the idea of net neutrality, arguing that the phone companies who receive gigantic government handouts in the form of cheap (or free) rights of ways and hold natural monopolies over our connectivity should be able to use that government largesse to run a protection racket in which any website that doesn't pay for "premium carriage" will be slowed down when you or I try to visit them. They also denounce the public domain as a collectivist plot, and argue that government monopolies over knowledge should be extended, and that tax-dollars should be used to enforce them. TechDirt's Mike Masnick has some choice words for the Pauls:

To them, any support of a neutral internet must be about "coercive state actions" and "collective rule" over "privately owned broadband high-speed infrastructure." This makes me curious if the Pauls spoke out against the billions and billions in subsidies and rights of way grants that the government provided the telcos and cable providers to build their networks. Once again, I am against regulating net neutrality -- because it's obvious that the telcos will control that process and the regulations will favor them against the public -- but pretending that broadband infrastructure is really "privately owned" when so much of it involved tax-payer-funded subsidies and rights of way is being in denial.

Then there's the following, where they claim that these evil "collectivists" want to limit "private property rights on the internet" and are saying that "what is considered to be in the public domain should be greatly expanded." Considering the Pauls were both instrumental in the fight against SOPA and PIPA, you would think that the two of them understood how copyright law is massively abused and how beneficial the public domain is.

Read the rest

Epic moonwalk video

Video Link. Eric Nash, aka @onelovecandyman, is from Pasadena, CA, and works as a stuntman and actor in and around LA. You can see him stunt-busking sometimes along the Santa Monica's Third Street Promenade. He's incredible. Post more videos, Eric!

(thanks, Joe Sabia) Read the rest

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