"Having spent so much of my life with Shakespeare's world, passions and ideas in my head and in my mouth, he feels like a friend—someone who just went out of the room to get another bottle of wine," Patrick Stewart once said. — Read the rest
IEEE Spectrum asked pioneering roboticist Rodney Brooks, co-founder of iRobot and former head of MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, the eternal engineering question: "What is a robot?" Inspired by computational neuroscientist Warren McCulloch who enjoyed writing sonnets, Brooks responded to the query in iambic pentameter. — Read the rest
The "Mosquito" is a high-pitched tone generator designed only to be audible to children and teens, and not to adults, in whose ears the nerve cells that detect these high tones have died off.
Good news everybody! If you're in the Navy or Marines, it's now illegal to throw you in the brig and feed you nothing but bread and water as a punishment.
Yes, The American military is still into this sort of bullshit. — Read the rest
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will join a government investigation into 'sonic attacks' that have left more than 25 U.S. personnel with mysterious ailments. — Read the rest
In northern Russia, a man who really wanted some booze drove an armored personnel carrier through a shop window, crashing into the store, then exited his vehicle and climbed through the wreckage to steal a bottle of wine. I know this will shock you, but he was drunk. — Read the rest
Last Tuesday, all wing personnel on the US Spangdahlem Air Base received a warning: "MISSILE INBOUND. SEEK SHELTER IMMEDIATELY!" The warning was recalled eight minutes later.
The Department of Energy has rebuffed Donald Trump's demand for the names of employees and contractors involved in shaping and executing government climate policy — which was widely viewed as a prelude to a politicized purge, to be carried out by Trump's climate-denying DoE leadership.
The Skunklock is a $109 crowdfunded gadget that contains pressurized vomit-inducing gas the creators call "Formula D_1," and which is intended to induce immediate vomiting when inhaled, as well as difficulty breathing, "A lot of similar symptoms to pepper spray."
In 2014, the US Office of Personnel Management was hacked (presumably by Chinese spies), and leaked 22,000,000+ records of Americans who'd applied for security clearance, handing over the most intimate, compromising details of their lives (the clearance process involves disclosing anything that could be used to blackmail you in the future). — Read the rest
Tristan Miller and Dave Morice created a website that produces highly-authentic Shakespearean sonnets. The trick: rather than randomly-generated Markov gobbledygook that evokes the flavor while crudely hitting the meter, each generated sonnet reuses whole lines from the body of Shakespeare's poetic work. — Read the rest
The nation-state hackers who stole 5.6 million+ records of US government employees (cough China cough) also took 5.6 million+ fingerprints. But it's no problem: those people can just get new fingerprints and revoke their old ones right?
The second attack is being blamed on Chinese state actors, and it netted the archives of Standard Form 86, which records applicants' mental illnesses, drug and alcohol use, past arrests and bankruptcies and lists of contacts and relatives.
The Port Authority in the Welsh town of Milford has installed a "Mosquito" — a sonic weapon that produces tones that are mostly perceptible to children and teenagers — at the library, where it has been used during opening hours.
Pop Sonnets is a tumblr that turns pop music into Shakespearean sonnets: above, YMCA ("Oh sweet and noble lad, be not aggrieved!").
— Read the rest
More than two years after the repeal of the law that barred gay men and lesbians from serving in the military openly, transgender service members can still be dismissed from the force without question, the result of a decades-old policy that dates back to an era when gender nonconformity was widely seen as a mental illness….