Half of Americans don't think legal pot will affect traffic safety

A Gallup poll reports that half of Americans don't worry that our roads will become less safe as more states legalize weed. The other half are probably not aware that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that there is no significant link between marijuana use and increased traffic accidents.

Image: "Bathub car moves down the freeway." Darrin Harris Frisby/Drug Policy Alliance Read the rest

What are the greatest pleasures of human existence?

Quora asked the question. Bits & Pieces selected a few example answers: Read the rest

Wind power generates 140% of Denmark's electricity demand

It's been extra windy in Denmark recently, and the country's 3,768 wind farms are producing more power than its residents can use. It's exporting the surplus power to Norway, Germany and Sweden. Denmark is building lots of new windfarms and is expected to produce half of its electricity from renewable sources before 2020. The UK government is not impressed:

The British wind industry may view the Danish achievement with envy, after David Cameron’s government announced a withdrawal of support for onshore windfarms from next year, and planning obstacles for onshore wind builds.

Image: Wikimedia / Harvey McDaniel Read the rest

Disney World decides to allow Sikh postman to deliver mail at resort

For seven year Disney World segregated postal carrier Gurdit Singh from visitors and other staff members because his facial hair and turban violated the resort's “Disney look” policy. But thanks to the efforts of the ACLU and the Sikh Coalition, Disney has decided its a small world, after all.

In a letter to Disney, Sikh Coalition and American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said the segregation relegated Singh to a mail route that had a greater workload than other routes.

It created animosity among his co-workers because he could not assist in operating other routes and it precluded his opportunities for professional advancement.

Following the intervention by Sikh Coalition and ACLU, Walt Disney World finally reversed its decision and granted Singh a religious accommodation.

Singh will no longer be kept hidden from public view of Disney visitors because of his turban and beard, and he will be permitted to run all mail routes just like every other mail carrier, Sikh Coalition said.

Read the rest

$4 LED bulbs to replace my dead incandescents

I've been waiting to switch to LED bulbs but didn't want to pay $10-20 a bulb. These are reasonably priced, and look like a normal bulb.

I hate changing bulbs and try to wait until a majority of mine are out before swapping them. The theory is that they'll all go out around the same time and I can just spend an afternoon replacing them all. In practice I spend months stumbling around the most important parts of the house to light, waiting for bulbs I never use to burn out. Not this time! After a mere 3-4 months of waiting I decided to jump the gun, buy a bunch of LED bulbs and get to swapping. Hopefully, when these bulbs start to go, in 20 or so years, I'll have forgotten this silly system.

These TCP bulbs are a great deal. At mere $4 a bulb, compared to the $10-20 I was seeing just a few months ago, they look like a normal bulb. For most lamps and lights in my home, I like these 60W equivalents, and I find the 2700K soft white bulbs perfect for my home. The light is very much like an incandescent and comes with none of the CFL problems. LEDs are warm instantly, do not flicker and appear to throw the color light they advertise. The few CFLs left in my home will likely find themselves replaced shortly.

If you've been waiting for LED replacement bulbs to come down in price, perhaps these will do. Read the rest

Howto: Irritate Donald Trump

Easy as it may be, New Republic has a guide for absolute beginners who feel comfortable having at least read the manual. Read the rest

Lifeguard flies rainbow flag, idiotic complaints follow

On July 4, Zach Hupp, a lifeguard on Carolina Beach, NC, flew a rainbow flag from his post. Hupp says someone immediately complained to another lifeguard, concerned "that they thought because I was flying that flag that I would only rescue gay people," and someone else posted on the town's Facebook page that she "didn't know how to explain this one to the tourists who asked us about it." Read the rest

How Seattle's economic boom is destroying the city

Jeff writes, "While reading Cory's recent post about leaving London reminded me more of the unaffordable real estate in Vancouver, British Columbia, it resembles some of the dramatic effects of Amazon and other technology companies driving incredible growth and development here in Seattle. Read the rest

Closing in on Pluto, probe gives us the best pictures yet of distant world

Tomorrow's will be even better. And the day after that, and the day after that… Read the rest

Deliciously designed product mascots that have lured consumers for decades

Quick! When you think of cereal, who says, “Theeey’re great!” Who’s the suave yet finicky cat peddling Nine Lives? The patch-eyed comic punk selling gum? The creepy yet charitable fast food clown? If you answered Tony the Tiger, Morris the Cat, Bazooka Joe, and Ronald McDonald, you’ll love the Mr. Product books, by product design aficionado Warren Dotz (author of Dog Food for Thought and Cat Food for Thought, also reviewed on Wink).

Associating products with characters started off in the 1800s with simple easily-recognized trademarks (for instance, Quaker Oats, whose original trademark in 1877 was “a lean and austere Quaker holding a scroll that displayed the word “Pure”). But these simple trademarks soon evolved into product characters with full-on personalities, many of whom starred in their own comic books and T.V. commercials.

Meet Mr. Product Volume 1 and Mr. Product Volume 2 by advertising art historian Warren Dotz are packed with advertising’s most recognizable product mascots, spanning around 60 years between the two books (Volume 1 covers 1920s-1970s while Volume 2 focuses on 1960-1985). Each book starts off with a nice bit of “spokes-characters” history, followed by page after page of colorful, whimsical, deliciously designed ads that have lured us suckers, er, consumers to buy their products for decades. It's interesting that both volumes were released on the same day – each with the same amount of pages – and I'm not sure why, as they could both have been seamlessly packaged within the same covers. But they do make a cute pair. Read the rest

Transparent hotel room hanging from side of mountain

For around $300/night, you can sleep in a transparent bedroom hanging off the side of a mountain above Peru's Sacred Valley of the Incas. Read the rest

Why is Kickstarter letting a hologram "scam" raise $250k?

The makers of Holus, a "holographic display," broke all the rules in the book. They posted fake CGI renderings of what's described elsewhere as a "Pepper's Ghost"-style optical trick, yet claim to “convert any digital content from a computer, tablet or smartphone into a 3D hologram." The viewing angles and qualities depicted are technologically unlikely. They only wanted $40k, but research and manufacturing costs could surely not be so tiny, suggesting crowdfunding as a VC-marketing vehicle. Most oddly, they even used a Kickstarter "Staff Pick" badge; when challenged, Kickstarter disclaimed interest in the unofficial use of the badge. The big question, from Joanie Lemercier, an artist and engineer who specializes in projections and holograms: is Kickstarter covering a scam? Read the rest

Apple's iOS ad-blocking is a net, not a gun

Joel Johnson, freshly out of Gawker's top editorial role, reports on what Apple may achieve by facilitating ad- and content-blocking in the next version of iOS: leverage over publishers. Read the rest

Stop telling women to smile

Tatyana Fazlalizadeh is a Brooklyn artist who tried something new to speak up for herself—and address street harassment—through art. Read the rest

WATCH: Impressive GTA V homage to US marriage equality

N&B Gaming commemorated US marriage equality with a fabulous GTA V rainbow dance party, till the cops showed up. Stick around for hilarious outtakes. Read the rest

Pope Leo XII drank coca wine and also endorsed it in ads

As previously posted, Pope Francis plans to chew coca leaves and already drank tea infused with coca, the raw ingredient in cocaine, during his visit to Bolivia.

Psychedelic historian Michael Horowitz points out that Francis is following in the footsteps of Pope Leo XII who appeared in an advertisement for the coca-infused French wine Vin Mariani, popular in the late 19th century. Read the rest

Meet the female Ghostbusters

Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones! The photo (and more) were posted to gaming forums NeoGAF. Looking forward to this. Read the rest

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