Kickstarting tick-the-box greeting cards for unusual occasions and nuanced sentiments

The always-brilliant David Malki ! of Wondermark writes "I love greeting cards, but what if you need one for a super unusual occasion, or have a very nuanced sentiment you want to convey? The answer: Tick-the-option greeting cards, made in the Wondermark style! They're so utilitarian, I like to think if you keep a few on hand, you'll be prepared for ANYTHING that comes up." Read the rest

Realistic chocolate dinosaur fossil teeth: choco-megaladon/T-Rex

Sarah Hardy's megaladon (£28) and T.Rex (£28) teeth are full size, convincing, and made from gorgeous, single-origin chocolates. Read the rest

Bob Crewe's groovy 1966 instrumental, "Music to Watch Girls By"

I'd long wondered who recorded this, I'm not surprised to learn it is the famous Bob Crewe. Read the rest

Wild cop conspiracy rumor

The FBI has warned the New York Police Department that a group called the National Liberation Militia has planned a "Halloween Revolt" that involves attacking NY police officers, and news organizations are lapping it up.

According to a "NYPD Officer Safety Alert" the National Liberation Militia has "no known New York City members" and "there is currently no known nexus between this threat and the NYPD or New York City." Nevertheless, NYPD officers are "strongly encouraged to remain vigilant" for the non-existent ruffians.

From Jesse Walker at Reason:

That's quite a tale. It's almost as if someone took one of those old urban legends about gang initiations, mashed it up with those recurring fears of a war on cops, and replaced the gangsters with a cabal of well-worn political villains. (Anarchists! Militias! No, wait: an anarchist militia! For "national liberation," 'cause anarchists are all about nations, right?) And then baked the batter in what may be America's biggest urban-legend-producing oven, Halloween.

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Great deal on Mr. Clean Extra Power Magic Erasers

I've written about my enthusiasm for melamine sponges before. I used one on Sunday to remove some stubborn rust stains from a plastic table. They are amazing tools. Right now, Amazon is selling a 4-pack of Mr. Clean Extra Power Magic Erasers for $(removed) when you use click "Clip This Coupon" on the product page. Read the rest

Shanghai Disneyland: "Ignite the magical dream within your heart"

The Walt Disney company has been trying to extend its reach into China for years. After the years of sputtering trying to get Hong Kong Disneyland on its feet, they built three more lands in the last few years and visitors are starting to come. But that’s nothing compared to the Disneyland they’re building in Shanghai, which is an enormous park with many attractions that are unique to it and have piqued the interest of Disney theme park fans all around the world.

Now, thanks to my friend Alain Littaye over at his swell Disney and More Blogspot I can tell you a lot about Shanghai Disneyland, whose animated map has just gone live on line here. While the site is not yet fully functional, it will whet your appetite!

Divided into seven “lands,” Shanghai Disneyland will open with a full day of attractions (unlike most Disney parks build in the last 25 years). Rumor has it that the Chinese government has closed over 100 factories in the immediate Shanghai area to eliminate the hideous gray throat-burning haze one encounters in Beijing, for example.

Guests will first encounter Mickey Avenue, which takes the place of the usual “Main Street U.S.A.” Filled with shops and character meet-and-greets, this is a new style of entrance for a Disney park.

A nod to the Chinese host country takes place in the new land Gardens of Imagination, which boasts seven “whimsical gardens,” as well as a carousel themed to the film Fantasia, a Dumbo spinning ride, as well as serving as the “hub” (a term Disney folks call that round spot in front of the castle from which paths to the other lands emanate). Read the rest

Out of the Abyss, the new D&D adventure, is Alice in Wonderland meets Diablo

Out of the Abyss, the new mega-adventure for Dungeons and Dragons, came out in September. It’s part of the Rage of Demons multi-product launch, which includes board and video games, novels and an officially sanctioned “play season,” all tied to the same storyline.

It’s probably the best adventure we’ve yet seen for the new edition of D&D, improving in many ways upon Princes of the Apocalypse, the previous adventure release, which in itself was a marked improvement over the Tyranny of Dragons story. While Tyranny suffered from railroading, Princes of the Apocalypse compensated by laying out a large sandbox-style world composed almost fully of hack-and-slash dungeon crawl, with a few side treks for breaks — kind of like a 16-bit Final Fantasy game, not that that’s bad!

Out of the Abyss, which was created as a collaboration with independent games company Green Ronin Publishing, looks to be the first adventure that truly gets the play balance right. There’s dungeon crawl galore, but there’s also a compelling, over-arching plotline, with lots of atmosphere and role-playing opportunities. Whereas the previous two campaigns felt like old-school D&D adventures, Out of the Abyss feels a lot more cinematic and maintains an actual story arc with rising tension and plot development rather than just a series of progressively harder dungeons. It’s a lot like the R. A. Salvatore novels that the campaign draws inspiration from (Salvatore’s characters Drizzt Do’Urden and Bruenor Battlehammer make appearances in the book and related media; Salvatore also wrote novels that tie into the Rage of Demons storyline). Read the rest

Explore a mysterious hard drive and reconstruct a broken world

There's something a little mysterious about the programs you can find in strange corners of the internet, and doubly so if you happen to find them in the bowels of someone else's computer. Read the rest

Drone carrying cellphones, drugs, hacksaw blades crashes at Oklahoma prison

Officials in Oklahoma claim to have halted the first attempt in the state to smuggle contraband into a prison with an unmanned aerial vehicle. Read the rest

Novel plagiarist gender-swapped heroine to create gay romance

A plagiarist was caught after eagle-eyed readers spotted the novel Coming Home Texas was nearly identical to My Kind of Trouble, by New York Times bestseller Becky McGraw.

Author Laura Harner's trick, allegedly, was to change a heterosexual romance to a gay male one—hoping, perhaps, that the lack of overlap between the two audiences would be enough to escape notice.

In the age of book search, though, that's not how these things go down: despite changing words, ages, names and descriptors, even the most superficial comparison demonstrates the lifting.

In one scene, "Since she’d gotten the call from Imelda, the closest thing to a mother that Cassie had known since her own mother died when she was ten" becomes "Since he’d gotten the call from Isabella – the closest thing to a mother that he’d known since his own mom died when he was nine."

The Guardian's Alison Flood reports that legal action is pending, and that the plagiarist has admitted mistakes were made. The astonishing speed at which Harner's novels are published suggests many more of them may have been made.

“Her book was almost a word-for-word, scene-for-scene duplication of my book, except the characters’ names had been changed, and short M/M love scenes had been inserted,” said McGraw. “The only scene she didn’t include was the epilogue, which couldn’t be altered to an M/M scene. It involved the heroine in labour and the hero having sympathetic labour pains.”

In a better world, we learned of this because the final birth scene had remained in the plagiarized M/M version of the story. Read the rest

Woodrow White's surreal and funny art

A few weeks ago I was on a plane flying to Oakland and the guy sitting next to recognized me. He told me he liked Boing Boing and, after chatting with him for a while, I learned that his name is Woodrow White and that he's the son of cartoonist Mimi Pond and painter Wayne White. I'm a big fan of both his parents, and in fact I interviewed Mimi for an episode of Gweek.

Woodrow is an excellent artist himself, and he told me I could feature some of his work here on Boing Boing. Enjoy!

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Nick Cole wrote an uplifting, zombie apocalypse love story

Nick Cole's novels are hard to put down, and as usual I read straight through The End of the World as We Knew It. This story is reminiscent of his stellar, post-apocalyptic Wasteland saga, as it introduces us to the civilization that replaced ours, several generations down the line, after a zombie apocalypse wipes us out.

Cole's new society reveres and seeks to preserve the past. Through three of recorded stories of survivors, two as society fell, and one as humanity achieves victory over the undead, we see that humankind might have been worth fighting for.

The characters are deep and grab you right away. Every page results in a surprise, new information, or fantastic action as this fast paced adventure takes off and doesn't stop til you are done. Cole's imagery is vivid and sets an emotional atmosphere as well, be prepared to be tired out if your tear through the novel in one sitting, like I did.

The End of the World as We Knew It is free via available on Kindle Unlimited Read the rest

Librarian of Congress puts impossible conditions on your right to jailbreak your 3D printer

Writing about yesterday's landmark Copyright Office ruling on the right to jailbreak, law-and-3D-printing expert Michael Weinberg says, "The 3D printer unlocking decision by the Librarian of Congress manages to capture exactly what happens when copyright is stretched to cover every possible problem that could come up in society." Read the rest

This USB charger is powered by an electric wheelchair

Josh Winkler is the engineer & inventor behind Cripple Concepts - an innovative startup that provides assistive tech for people with disabilities, made and designed by people with disabilities. Read the rest

The two brilliant, prescient 20th century science fiction novels you should read this election season

Science fiction may not predict the future reliably, but sometimes, the ability of writers to pick up on the hidden, latent futuristic present proves to be remarkably prescient. Two of my favorite novels from the late 20th century were not only amazingly great reads, but they also presented enormous insight into the future of data-driven, finance-dominated, networked political campaigning. If you want to understand the 2016 election, these are the next two books you should read.

Pie Face – If you get the wrong number, this slapstick comedy game will fling a faceful of whipped cream

See more photos at Wink Fun.

A cream pie in the face! It’s an ageless slapstick comedy routine that is also the inspiration for Hasbro’s Pie Face Game. Thanks in part to a viral video that’s making its rounds on social media, this equally ageless game is destined to be a hit this holiday season. Pie Face is as easy as pie to setup and play, although clean-up will be required. To get started, players attach the purple Chin Rest and Splash Card Mask to the Pie Thrower base, which comprises two handles and a throwing arm in the shape of a hand. After setting the throwing arm in place, you add the pièce de résistance: a dollop of whipped cream from your kitchen.

The rules of the game dictate that the youngest player goes first. A numbered spinner determines how many times a player must turn the handles of the pie thrower. Each player then places his or her chin on the Chin Rest with face protruding through the opening in the splash card (which is thankfully made of laminated, washable plastic). A point is awarded for each successful click of the handle that does NOT result in the player getting a face full of whipped cream. If a player completes a turn without getting hit, the points double. For the faint of heart, partial turns are allowed. For example, if a player spins a 4, he or she may elect to turn the handle only 2 times. But, this strategy comes with a price: you can’t score double points. Read the rest

The Beatles: A 5-minute drum chronology

Australian Kye Smith's video is a tribute to Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney's fantastic drumming for the Beatles. Read the rest

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