Alien landscape in a melted picnic table

Miguel writes, "I found a picnic table in a park with a melted section... and I took a trip to a distant planet... I believe Spaceman Spiff would be proud."

Alien Planet

(Thanks, Miguel!) Read the rest

Profiles of brutalized laborers building Abu Dhabi's Louvre and Guggenheim

Molly Crabapple writes, "For My latest piece for Vice, I spoke with the men paid $200/month to build the Louvre and the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi." Read the rest

Little girl recites Shakespeare: All the world's a stage

Iain writes, "Over about 18 months, I recorded my daughter reciting a famous monologue by William Shakespeare, one line at a time. If you've got a child (or a whole class of them) why not make your own version? (Inspired by the wonderful 'Oh, The Places You'll Go' video recorded at Burning Man."

(Thanks, Iain!) Read the rest

Game of Thrones Book Club: Outlander

In this episode, Red and Ivan recap the series premiere of Outlander.

NZ TV won't air ads for geo-unblocking ISP

Callum writes, "A New Zealand ISP has had its TV ads rejected by multiple NZ TV Networks (there are three in total, bless) citing a possible 'breach of copyright'." Read the rest

DEA paid Amtrak worker $854K for customer data it could have obtained for free

A former Amtrak employee has been selling passenger data to the DEA for almost twenty years, and the individual received about $854K for their efforts. But the DEA could have obtained information relevant to the agency's work for free. Read the rest

Dogs freak out over floating wiener magic trick

Magician and mentalist Jose Ahonen pulls one over on the dogs: the old levitating wiener trick. Oh shut up. Get your mind out of the gutter. It's cute, and part of his ongoing "Magic for Dogs" series. Read the rest

Weaseling about surveillance, Australian Attorney General attains bullshit Singularity

Michael writes, "Watching Australia's Attorney-General try to explain why tracking Australians' web histories is not such a big deal resembles listening to a dirty joke told by a ten-year-old, i.e. it leaves one with the distinct impression the speaker is trying to seem like they understand something they've only heard about secondhand." Read the rest

How to write responsibly on the internet about a famous person's suicide

The "suicide contagion" is a real phenomenon, says the CDC. Here's how journalists, bloggers, and public officials can help avoid spreading it. Read the rest

The Works – A tour of New York’s infrastructures inside and underneath

Take the infrastructure of any large city. Take New York City, for example. The dozens of systems NYC depends on to thrive – water works, trains, bridges, mail, cargo, electrical, data – are each as complex and fascinating as a meadow. Read the rest

American man linked to pro-ISIS tweets jailed after arrest at airport

FBI agents arrested Donald Ray Morgan, 44, of North Carolina, at JFK Airport on August 2 on a firearms charge-- the cause for alarm, according to reports, was his behavior on Twitter. Read the rest

Giveaway! Nomiku Sous Vide Immersion Circulator

In this episode we are giving away one of Jason's favorite kitchen appliances: the Nomiku Sous Vide Immersion Circulator. See the full post for details. We also review the G-Buzz portable alarm clock and the Cuisinart Mini-Prep Plus Food Processor.

Robin Williams, 1951-2014

Actor and comedian Robin Williams died earlier today at his home in Tiburon, California, reports the Marin County Sheriff. [PDF]

More: BBC, NBC Read the rest

Former SpaceX employees sue over labor law dispute

Two former former structural technicians at SpaceX are suing the Hawthorne company, saying the space technology firm violated California labor law in terminating them and others in what they called “mass layoffs.” [LA Times] Read the rest

Blogging History: Lavabit founder stops using email; Neal Stephenson's Orth Hugo speech; NY-NJ ferry cop harasses man for reading D&D book

One year ago Lavabit founder has stopped using email: "If you knew what I know, you might not use it either": Levison’s lawyer, Jesse Binnall, who is based in Northern Virginia — the court district where Levison needed representation — added that it’s “ridiculous” that Levison has to so carefully parse what he says about the government inquiry. “In America, we’re not supposed to have to worry about watching our words like this when we’re talking to the press,” Binnall said.

Five years ago Stephenson's Orth-speak Hugo acceptance speech: Here's the Orth text of Neal Stephenson's acceptance speech for the Hugo Award for Anathem, snapped at the pre-award reception before we both discovered that our books had been beaten by Gaiman's kick-ass Graveyard Book.

Ten years ago D&D book reader on ferry hassled by security morons: Thanks to the RNC, there are mandatory bag searches happening on the NJ-NY Ferry. This fellow first got hassled with a re-search for carrying The Player's Guide to Faerun a D&D book, and then the next day, security tried to confiscate his copy of Exalted: The Abyssals as 'inappropriate.'

Read the rest

'Game of Thrones' actor dies after 4 days of filming

Actor J.J. Murphy, of Northern Ireland is dead at 86, just days after filming his first scenes for Game of Thrones Season 5. He collapsed and died on Friday. Read the rest

Fractal Experience: geometric GIFs by Erik Söderberg

Erik Söderberg's “Fractal Experience,” a series exploring the relationships between geometry, nature and the human being. Read the rest

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