Review: Dasani Sparkling Bread Mold water

As a longtime fan of sparkling, zero-carb flavored water beverages, I thought I'd check out the new offerings from Dasani, whose own unsweetened slim-can drinks come in a range of popular flavors—and a lighter price tag than Perrier and La Croix.

I decided to try Dasani's Sparkling Bread Mold flavor first, and I must say that I'm delighted with the results.

Floral, moldy and yet delicately balanced, it only hints at a full taste of unseen mycobiomes, with crisp fungal notes hitting the nose moreso than the tongue. These mildew whispers gather to a full-throated sporal experience as the flavor settles in.

If at first it seems a slow way to acquire a taste for gulping clumps of algae in polluted lakes, or standing rainwater from brownfield reclamation sites, remember that the key to these fashionable sparkling waters is subtlety, a careful naturalism that's hard to crack without the crutches of sugar or lead-acid battery slime.

Complex notes of penicillin and petrichor are augmented by tertiary aromas of flower petals and basement dust, leading to a satisfying, sustained mildew finish.

All in all, I can't recommend Dasani Sparkling Bread Mold water enough, especially to fans of organic matter that has putrefied then dried out to leave only a vaguely acrid scent of death.

Garnish with an old crouton and enjoy over ice on an oppressively humid day, in a swamp-cooled shed with wet carpet.

Note: Oddly, the cans I tested were subject to a misprint whereby each was stamped "Raspberry Lemonade" instead of "Bread Mold." This had no effect on the flavor whatsoever. Read the rest

On Trump and totalitarianism

People talk about Trump and totalitarianism in such a facile way. They don't know how close we came to the brink. Read the rest

Happy Putants

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Review: Keto chocolate chip cookies

I lost about 40 pounds on a keto diet, that being the near-total abnegation of carbs. It worked, for me, but the strict mandate means my foodlife is mostly salads, nuts and meat. Tough going! The popularity of the diet, and others similar to it (paleo, Atkins, etc), has created a market for carbless snacks that nonetheless resemble carbtastic snacks. Such as "keto cookies," a new product from ketokookies.com that they're kickstarting. Read the rest

WATCH: Robin hatchling under my deck

A robin made its nest under our deck, giving us a wonderful birds' eye view of the nest through the boards. Today we noticed one of her three eggs had hatched! Here is footage of the new level 1 robin that emerged.

UPDATE: Wednesday, May 11. Then there were three! Video by Heather.

UPDATE:May 20. They grow up so fast. (Photo: Heather)

UPDATE:May 25. Look at these handsome young boids. Read the rest

If Slither.io was a text adventure

The internet is addicted to Slither.io, a startlingly compulsive multiplayer mashup of the classic "Snake" game and Tron's "Light Cycles": block other snakes with your body, watch them explode into a cloud of orbs, then eat the glowing remains in order to grow longer and larger. It's a game of fast reactions, split-second decisions and low-latency internet connections.

Naturally, then, I wondered what it would be like as a text adventure. Read the rest

Sex Nun of Dune

Posted without context or comment. Read the rest

Trump the Carpathian

On a mountain of skulls, in the castle of pain, I sat on a throne of blood! And let me tell you it was really great. And I have a great relationship with the Moldavian people. They love me. Read the rest

Tailender

A short story about self-satisfaction, nerdcrime, and the 2008 economic meltdown. [5 min read]

Infinite Yul

And I made an actually-infinite perfect-looping Yul GIF for you:

Previously: Infinite Arnie. Read the rest

Did Nostradamus predict President Trump?

Michel de Nostradame, the 16th century apothecary and seer, published prophecies that remain chilling to this day. Their power is in their peculiar mix of vagueness and specifics: they describe nightmarish scenes with names and analogies that adhere with unsettling elegance to the political forces and personas of later ages.

Here, for example, is a classic quatrain held to describe the French Revolution:

"From the enslaved populace, songs, Chants and demands While princes and lords are held captive in prisons. These will in the future by headless idiots Be received as divine prayers."

Once you've decided what any given quatrain is about, it reads like an eyewitness report by an educated man from an earlier era, trying naively to describe in terms meaningful to him the sights of an apocalyptic technological future. You can imagine him getting high, looking into the fire or a glass ball, and feverishly transcribing the incomprehensible terrors he observes.

Among Nostradamus' greatest hits were Hitler (to whom references to "Hister" are said to apply); Saddam Hussein, whose name accommodates the terrifying "Mabus" character; and Barack Obama, of course, who fits that name even better.

Sure, it's all quite silly, a load of could-mean-anything Renaissance creepypasta. And there's humor to be found in the fact that Nostradamus is so good at predicting things that have already happened.

But where's Donald Trump?

He's mad, he's bad, and he's on track to be the Republican nominee for U.S. Read the rest

INTERVIEW: Hip Hop Family Tree's Ed Piskor on the weird old tools of classic comics

Ed Piskor, creator of Hip Hop Family Tree (which debuted right here at Boing Boing) shared with us some of the ancient artistic tools that inspires his unique technique.

While drawing a splendid Happy Mutant, he takes us through his "war chest": zip-a-tone sheets, letraset, a Leroy lettering gadget, risography, and the immortal spirit of great cartooning.

He also muses on what it's like to teach students who know every corner of a Wacom tablet, but recoil in horror when the only undo level is a splodge of white-out.

Enjoy the 35-minute visit to his studio! And keep an eye out for the Happy Mutant you see below—we'll be auctioning them for a good cause soon.

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Awesome 8-bit chiptune bloopcore remix of John Cage's 4′33″

You're welcome. Read the rest

1970s Kylo Ren

Adam Driver did a great job but I still prefer the original actor. Read the rest

Fancy printer review: Epson SureColor P600

My Canon 9000 died last year after many years of infrequent but dutiful service. The Epson SureColor P600 isn't just an upgrade on cheaper wide-format photo printers; the prints are significantly better than the aging model that it replaced.

At $720 on Amazon, it's significantly more expensive than even well-reviewed photo inkjets, but the upgrade rationale is clear: large 13"-wide (e.g. 13x19" or A3) fine art and photo prints of "exhibition" quality. It's for artists and photographers who want to sell copies of their work without trusting it to third-party services and without compromising on print quality—but who aren't churning prints out at a pace where dropping four-figures on a large-tank commercial model makes sense.

It uses nine 25.9ml ink cartridges (each are about $35 to replace), though not all will be used on every paper type (switching between photo and matte blacks is automatic, but triggers a cleaning of the black feed that apparently costs about a dollar's worth of ink.)

It's 22 x 30 x 17 inches and about forty pounds, so you'll need space for it. It also has a touch-sensitive screen, which seems superfluous, but does ease the UI nightmare that printer setup usually is.

A wide variety of art and other specialty finish papers are offered by Epson. A note of caution: the Mac instructions tell you to set it up with Bonjour, but if you do, the print dialog doesn't have any of the Epson-specific options. When setting it up, wait until it autodetects the "IP" connection and pick that one instead. Read the rest

Six months with a dumbphone

In yearning for simplicity, the question is its own answer. Or maybe just get something old from Nokia.

Review: Popcake PC-11 Pancake Extruder

While visiting a friend recently, I stayed at a local hotel and got a chance to try out the Quickcakes Popcake PC-11 Pancake Extruder. About a yard wide, it has a single button on it, a small monochrome display, and is emblazoned with a decal stating "PANCAKES IN A MINUTE FLAT." Read the rest

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