Canada's spies surveil the whole world's downloads

A newly released Snowden leak jointly published by the CBC and The Intercept documents Canada's Communications Security Establishment's LEVITATION program, which spies on 15 million downloads from P2P, file lockers, and popular file distribution sites. Read the rest

Video of what it was like at a massive underground UK rave in 1994

New Year's Eve 1994, the Strictly Underground Rave, held at London's Wembley Stadium. Some 10,000 people attended. Read the rest

Watch Beachbot make large-scale sand drawings

Disney Research teamed with ETH Zürich students to create Beachbot, a robot that creates pre-programmed sand drawing. Read the rest

Flowers in ice

Azuma Makoto's "Iced Flowers" is a time-based installation of flowers in frozen blocks that "change themselves over time." Read the rest

Red pandas get very excited about apples

And apples are a perfectly good thing to get excited about.

Supermarket spaceships from the 1950s

(Space Age Museum)

In the 1950s, massive model spaceships sponsored by food brands traveled the highways and byways of America between grocery stores and state fairs to delight a public excited about our spacefaring future. Read the rest

British recipe evokes all the flavor of congealed deer pee

Cuisine at its finest. via Read the rest

"When arts die, they turn into hobbies."

Author Michael Lind weighs in with this thought-provoking essay about what happens when an art form shrinks to a niche market. Using literature and architecture as examples, he organizes major and minor arts horizontally, based on audience size: Read the rest

Journalists! Activists! Nominate your worst FOIA horror stories

Dave Maass at the Electronic Frontier Foundation wants to experience bureaucratic obfuscation and evasion—vicariously, though you.

This year, EFF is setting out to recognize the most outrageous responses to Freedom of Information Act and state open records act requests. We are calling it The Foilies and we need journalists, citizen nominations for these dubious honors.

Send your nominations to foilies at eff.org by Feb. 20, 2015. Recipients of these dubious awards will be announced during Sunshine Week in March.

Read the rest

Temporary tattoos from your Instagram

Picatoo is a new service that turns your Instagram images into temporary tattoos. According to the site, they last about seven days. It costs $15 for 12 tattoos. Read the rest

Rancilio Rocky Coffee Grinder, commercial quality grinder that fits on your counter

In the eight years I've been grinding my own coffee, I've burned out the motor on three grinders: a cheap blade grinder, then a Cuisinart burr grinder, and finally a Capresso grind 'n brew. Either consumer-level grinders are poorly made, or my workload of 4-5 pots of filter coffee per week plus the occasional enemy (no space for a wood chipper in my city apartment) is too intense. Having spent more than $300 on now busted grinders I decided to investigate what it would take to acquire a grinder that I might reasonably expect to last for a decade.

The Rocky has commercial grade grinding burrs and is rated at 7.7 lbs per hour. Rancilio refers to the Rocky as "quiet during operation", and maybe it is in a relative sense, but I've yet to find a device that crushes things at a volume level approaching "serene". It is slightly less obnoxious than my previous grinders at close range.

Though I was sufficiently assured that the grinder would stand up to my usage, the quality that tipped the scales towards the Rocky is one most coffee nerd sites don't mention: height. At 13.8" tall, the Rocky is much shorter than most prosumer grinders, and it was the only grinder of its quality that fits easily under my shelves. I've had it for two years at this point and it still grinds as if I'd just taken it out of the box.

Rancilio Rocky Coffee Grinder ($363) Read the rest

If Facebook is down, don't call 911

When Facebook went down on Monday, five people (FIVE!!!) in the Easy Bay Area alone called 911. Read the rest

Drone captures pod of dolphins surfing in unison

“Huge pods of bottlenose dolphins cruise the shoreline and surf the crystal clear turquoise waves.” Read the rest

Pet lizard greets man happily, like a dog would

This video is tripping me out hard. Read the rest

United website breach let fliers see each others' private data

Alice Taylor could have requested a very expensive upgrade on your behalf. The airline isn't saying why.

Sci-Fest LA is back!

Sci-Fest LA, an incredible one act science fiction play festival held in Los Angeles, is back for 2015! The team needs help with funding this amazing program. Read the rest

What Should I Read Next? Suggestions based on books you enjoyed

What Should I Read Next? suggests books, similar to the algorithm used on sites like Netflix and Amazon based on your use patterns and ratings. Read the rest

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