What it's like to take a 36-hour sleeper train from LA to Seattle

Amtrak’s Coast Starlight, which it bills as “A Grand West Coast Train Adventure,” is its last remaining full-service sleeper train. The Coast Starlight is home to what would have previously been standard: a dining car, an observation car with floor-to ceiling windows, a movie theater, and a full slate of entertainment options, including the two complimentary wine tastings. Nicole Dieker takes the trip.

Father's Day: Groucho sings "Father's Day"

Once again, my favorite Father's Day anthem: Groucho Marx sings Father's Day. Read the rest

Printeer - a 3D printer for kids

Printeer is a kids 3D printer that runs on an iPad and "doesn't require any intermediate steps between design and 3D printing." This is a good idea because 3D printer software is still clunky and finicky. Read the rest

Blogging History: Why Prism matters; GWB torture lawsuit; Boing Boing 2.0

One year ago today Why you should care about surveillance: We're bad at privacy because the consequences of privacy disclosures are separated by a lot of time and space from the disclosures themselves. It's like trying to get good at cricket by swinging the bat, closing your eyes before you see where the ball is headed, and then being told, months later, somewhere else, where the ball went. So of course we're bad at privacy: almost all our privacy disclosures do no harm, and some of them cause grotesque harm, but when this happens, it happens so far away from the disclosure that we can't learn from it.

Five years ago today Lawsuit Against Former Bush Official Over Torture Claims Can Proceed: [L]awyers for the man suing Mr. Yoo, Jose Padilla, say it provides substantive interpretation of constitutional issues for all detainees and could have a broad impact.

Ten years ago today Boing Boing 2.0: Welcome to the new and improved Boing Boing, now with sponsors! Seriously, there's nothing wrong with your set. The only real difference you'll find on the page, besides a cleaner design, is the addition of those small ad boxes on the sides. Read the rest

Texas Country singer and songwriter Ray Wylie Hubbard [RiYL 57]

"I wasn’t entirely sure what I was getting myself into when I walked backstage to meet Hubbard, the 67-year-old outlaw country survivor," says Brian Heater. "An elder statesman of the same scene that produced the likes of Waylon Jennings and Townes Van Zandt -- he one of the few who’d lived to tell the tales."

Father's Day: Gaiman's Fortunately the Milk

Neil Gaiman's 2013 young adult novel Fortunately, the Milk was a fabulous tribute to dads and their ability to troll their kids with bald-faced, outlandish lies. It's narrated by a boy whose mother is away on a business trip, and whose father had to go out to the corner store for a pint of milk for the cereal and his tea. Read the rest

Tumblers that trace whiskey's noble lineage

Pop Chart Lab's Whiskey Glasses Set is comprised of four tumblers, each of which traces the lineage of different branches of the whiskey tree (rye is a notable omission). They're very beautiful, and cost $45 for the set. They're adapted from the Whiskey Taxonomy poster, which can also be had in laser-engraved form.

Whiskey Glasses Set

(via Laughing Squid) Read the rest

Tetrix 13: CD/slasher film with fold-open hockey mask cover & sawblade disc

Tetrix writes, "Tetrix 13 is our 13th release in as many years, so we made a slasher film based parody album and called it 'Tetrix the 13th'. The album is more like a radio play, with songs and storyline alternating on successive tracks. And, like any good musical, the songs also advance the storyline."

TETRIX 13 by TETRIX Read the rest

Father's Day: A Bear for Punishment

In honor of Father's Day, here's one of the great, classic animation celebrations of the pater familias: Warner Bros' Three Bears celebrate in "A Bear for Punishment." Read the rest

Timberland's new warranty conditions screw the prisoners who must buy them

Timberland -- whose boots are the sole option for many prisoners in US correctional institutions, thanks to sweetheart deals with prison commissaries -- has a new set of kafkaesque warranty conditions for prisoners that makes it effectively impossible to get defective footwear repaired, meaning that prisoners could spend decades without suitable footwear. Read the rest

Ikea bullies Ikeahackers with bogus trademark claim

Andy writes, "For eight years, Jules' IKEAHackers site has published ways people have hacked their IKEA products. Hundreds of people have combined IKEA products in creative ways to create everything from desks to cat trees.

When the fan site turned to a huge part-time job, Jules ran a few small advertisements.

Now IKEA's attorneys have sent the site a Cease and Desist."

Ikea's C&D is, as a matter of law, steaming bullshit. There's no trademark violation here -- the use of Ikea's name is purely factual. The fact that money changes hands on Ikeahackers (which Ikea's lawyers seem most upset about) has no bearing on the trademark analysis. There is no chance of confusion or dilution from Ikeahackers' use of the mark. This is pure bullying, an attempt at censorship. I'm shocked to see that Jules has a lawyer who advised her to take such a terrible deal.

We've linked to Ikeahackers many times in the past.

Trademark law is surrounded by urban legends. Trademark does not create the legal right to stop people from making factual uses of a mark ("Ikeahackers" is a site for people who hack Ikea furniture). And while there is a very slim chance of trademarks being "genericized" through a failure to police, this risk is grossly overstated by trademark lawyers (quick, name three modern, active trademarks that have been genericized through a lack of policing), and in any event, you can get the same benefit from offering a royalty-free license as you get from threatening a lawsuit. Read the rest

Orphan Black's penultimate episode has a lot of mommy issues [TV recap S2E9]

Caroline Siede reviews the latest episode of BBC America’s clone drama

Last Unicorn clothes

Zack writes, "From the horse's mouth, so to speak (read: author Peter S. Beagle): A line of clothes based on Beagle's classic fantasy novel, memorably adapted as a 1982 animated film and an IDW graphic novel. If you've ever wanted 'Schmendrick Leggings,' or a 'Red Bull Poncho Tank,' now's your chance.

The Last Unicorn

(Thanks, Zack!) Read the rest

Anti-drone clothing that prevents thermal imaging

The Privacy Gift Shop's Stealth Wear line is comprised of garments that stop you from being thermally imaged by drones. It comes in burqa ($2500), hijab ($550), and hoodie ($350).

Stealth Wear (Thanks, Marko!) Read the rest