Self-style Facebook art critics review Mitch O'Connell's Times Square Trump billboard

The reviews are in! Mitch O'Connell's Trump "They Live" billboard, which many Boing Boing readers help to fund, has won wide praise among the intellectual elite who discuss fine art on Facebook. Mitch collected the reviews and posted them on his blog. Here's a selection:

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This is the best kind of Apple Watch band

I got one of these bands for my Apple Watch a couple of years ago. It replaced the stock rubber band that's like a little belt with holes and a buckle. This one automatically adjusts to any size wrist and stays in place with a magnet. It's so much better than any other kind of band I can think of. It's usually on Amazon but if you use code SSBZ7IR8 it's about half that price. Read the rest

This 3 minute video will make you love mealworms

Dr. Adrian Smith of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences at North Carolina State University has been raising mealworms as ant food for many years. He had little interest in the creatures, but then starting taking time-lapse photos of them and discovered how truly amazing they are.

Here are some things I learned about them:

They are called mealworms not because they are commonly used as meals for pets, but because they often invade stored grains. After several molts, they go into a pupal stage, which can last for days or weeks. When they emerge as beetles, they are pale and soft. It takes several days for their cuticle to darken and get hard.

Dr. Smith runs a YouTube channel called Ant Lab, which I just subscribed to. The videos are excellent and not always about ants, but most of them are, like this one about a certain kind of ant that collects the skulls of an enemy ant.

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Gentleman accused of hiding manbun under MAGA cap, also arrested for spraying crowd with bear repellent

David Nicholas Dempsey, 32, was arrested in Santa Monica, CA after he was found to be concealing a manbun under his red MAGA cap. He received an additional charge for spraying a crowd of Trump protesters with bear repellent. (Where is Mitt Romney when you need him?)

"Police announced Sunday that they arrested David Nicholas Dempsey, 32, on felony charges for allegedly violating his parole, using a prohibited tear gas weapon and assaulting the crowd with a caustic chemical," according to The Washington Post.

From KTLA 5:

[Dempsey] was seen in witness video arguing with protestors opposed to President Trump when he began spraying the crowd with a large canister of pepper spray intended for deterring bear attacks. At one point, he's seen walking up to a man who was lying on the ground and spraying him directly in the face at close range.

Dempsey was pointed out by bystanders as the person who sprayed the bear spray and he was taken into custody at the scene.

As a convicted felon, Dempsey is barred from possessing pepper spray or other tear gas weapons, police said.

In Los Angeles County, Dempsey was convicted of burglary in 2006 and again in 2009, and he was convicted of larceny and conspiracy in 2012, court records show.

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Mitt Romney likes everyone in the Senate except Bernie Sanders, because he "scowls"

“People [in the Senate] are really friendly, they’re really nice—except Bernie,” Romney said of fellow senator Bernie Sanders in an interview in The Atlantic.

“He’s a curmudgeon. It’s not that he’s mean or whatever; he just kind of scowls, you know” — Romney hunched his back and summoned a Scrooge-like grunt. “For Bernie, it seems like this is kind of who he is. It’s defining. It’s his entire person. For me, it’s part of who I am, but it’s not the whole person.”

It's a good thing for Bernie that Romney doesn't disapprove of his hair style.

Image: By Ben P L from Provo - Mitt Romney, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link Read the rest

Facebook isn’t free speech, it’s "algorithmic amplification optimized for outrage"

Jon Evans of TechCrunch zeroes in on Facebook's big problem. Mark Zuckerberg wants you to believe that Facebook was designed as a platform where anyone can share their ideas, but as Evans points out, it's Facebook's algorithm that decides which ideas you see.

When Zuckerberg talks about giving people a voice, he really means giving those people selected by Facebook’s algorithm a voice. When he says “People having the power to express themselves at scale is a new kind of force in the world — a Fifth Estate,” what he actually means is that Facebook’s algorithm is itself that Fifth Estate.

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Mobile phone covered with synthetic human skin

Researchers at Telecom Paris have developed an artificial skin that responds to stroking, pinching, tapping, and tickling. To demonstrate it, they covered a mobile phone with the skin and showed how it could work as a back-of-the-device interface.  The video also shows how the material can be used to give robots a skin that "feels" when it is touched.

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If you are in LA, come to Nicoletta Ceccoli's art opening at Corey Helford Gallery

Corey Helford Gallery in Los Angeles will be showing the work of painter Nicoletta Ceccoli from November 2 to December 7. Here are a few of the paintings in the show:

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This rubber bristles brush is like a cat hair magnet

This rubber bristled brush does a great job of removing our three cats' fur from carpets, bedspreads, and furniture. We had it for years and it has held up well. It's only on Amazon. Read the rest

Jim Meskimen impersonates 20 celebs in 2 minutes in remarkable deepfake video

The deepfake technology in this video is far from flawless, but Jim Meskimen's voices and mannerisms more than make up for it. Watch him recite a poem of his own composition as John Malkovich, Colin Firth, Robert Deniro, Tommy Lee Jones, Nick Offerman, George Clooney, Christopher Walken, Anthony Hopkins, Dr. Phil, Nicholas Cage, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Morgan Freeman, Bryan Cranston, Christoph Waltz, Joe Pesci, Jack Nicholson, George W. Bush, Ian McKellen, Ron Howard, and Robin Williams.

[via Twisted Sifter] Read the rest

Short documentary about people living in tunnels under Las Vegas

According to this short documentary, there are hundreds of miles of service, storm, and sewer tunnels beneath the glitz and neon of Las Vegas, and these tunnels are home to many people. The video has interviews with some of the residents, who say they rely on each other for food, money, and support.

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This gentleman's pleasure in revving his motorcycle is interrupted when it catches on fire

A young man was having a fine time making a loud noise with his motorcycle for all the neighbors to enjoy. His fun was cut short when the engine caught on fire. The laugh at the end of the video has potential to become the Wilhelm Scream of laughs.

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NYC Ferry department lies about reason for not letting Muslim families aboard

Three Muslim families were unlawfully forbidden to board an NYC ferry, according to a complaint filed by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). The women in the families were wearing traditional Muslim garbs -- "hijabs, religious headcover, and long dresses covering their legs and arms for religious purposes." The families were about to board but were stopped by an NYC Ferry employee who told them they would not be allowed on the ferry do to a security issue. They were escorted to a security officer, who said he didn't know why they had been prevented from boarding the ferry. When they returned to the boarding area, a ferry employee told them they had been denied boarding because their children had been observed standing on seats, a claim that another ferry employee contradicted.

From NBC News:

NYC Ferry offered to reimburse the families for their fares, calling the incident a "misunderstanding." CAIR said it is seeking payment of compensatory damages for "humiliation, embarrassment, and severe emotional distress" and punitive damages.

New York City's Economic Development Corporation, which runs NYC Ferry, told NBC News that it was aware of the complaint and is investigating the incident.

Image: Shinya Suzuki/Flickr. Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0) Read the rest

Ali Wong's guide on how to tell a good Asian restaurant from a bad one

Comedian/actor Ali Wong has a new book out called Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets & Advice for Living Your Best Life and it includes her guide for how to tell the difference between good and bad Asian restaurants. Vulture has an excerpt. Here's an excerpt of the excerpt:

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Look what I made for lovers of Kewpie mayonnaise

Kewpie Mayonnaise, made in Japan, has extra egg yolk and MSG in it, making it far superior to any other commercially-made mayonnaise. My family loves the Kewpie. To make it easier to squeeze out of the bottle, I 3D printed a thing you can attach to the cap so you can invert the bottle and let the mayo settle near the spout. Now we don't have to shake the bottle to get the mayo out.

If you want to print one of your own, here's the STL file. If you don't have a printer but love Kewpie and need one of these, email me (mark@boingboing.net) and I'll print one out and send it to you for the price of the postage.

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Trump appointed the author of "100 Secrets and Habits of the Illuminati for Life Success" to the Commission on Presidential Scholars

According to the U.S. Department of Education, The Commission on Presidential Scholars is "a group of eminent private citizens appointed by the President to select and honor the Presidential Scholars... The Scholars demonstrate exceptional accomplishments in academics, the arts, career and technical education and an outstanding commitment to public service."

Is it any surprise that Trump's idea of an eminent private citizen is a gentleman by the name of George Mentz? He is a lawyer from Colorado Springs who has written a number of Illuminati self-help books, such as The Illuminati Secret Laws of Money, The Illuminati Handbook, 50 Laws of Power of the Illuminati, and 100 Secrets and Habits of the Illuminati for Life Success.

From The Week:

Several of those books are co-authored with someone named "Magus Incognito," and generally share how mindfulness can lead to prosperity. Mentz cautioned The Denver Post about getting "too excited" about his word choice, essentially saying the term "Illuminati" is used as a marketing tactic.

From The Denver Post:

“If you conceive of your desire, you can then imagine that your goal will take place with belief, and then you will be able (to) retrieve the opportunity from the world’s storehouse of riches,” he wrote in a 2013 book, “Abundance Bible & the Secret Powers of Manifesting Wealth Health and Peace of Mind.”

“When a person stops struggling and initiates ALCHEMY OR MAGIC, SOMETHING HAPPENS,” Mentz wrote in another 2013 book, “Success Magic — The Prosperity Secret to Win with Magical Spiritual Power: How to Grow Rich, Influence People, Protect Your Mindset and Love Yourself Like a Warrior Using Timeless Abundance Secrets.” An e-book version is available for $2.99 on Amazon.

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The Beatles - The Singles Collection is a box set with all 22 singles issued in the UK between 1962 and 1970

The Beatles: The Singles Collection is an upcoming box set of 23 vinyl 7-inch discs, including all 22 singles issued in the UK between 1962 and 1970. You can pre-order on Amazon for

These singles, plus an exclusive new double A-side single for the mid-1990s-issued tracks "Free As A Bird" and "Real Love," are newly cut for vinyl from their original mono and stereo master tapes by Sean Magee at Abbey Road Studios for a new limited edition boxed set. The Beatles: The Singles Collection presents 46 tracks on 23 180-gram seven-inch vinyl singles in faithfully reproduced international picture sleeves, accompanied by a 40-page booklet with photos, ephemera, and detailed essays by Beatles historian Kevin Howlett. The collectible set will be released worldwide on November 22 by Apple Corps Ltd./Capitol/UMe.

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