Guardian.UK: Giant 1950s robot Gygan up for sale.
The video’s a hoot-and-a-half. I sorely miss that style of narration.
BlessThisStuff: 2014 Triumph Tiger Explorer XC.
The reason I didn’t buy one? I couldn’t straddle the bike at stoplights without standing on my tip-toes. Short inseam, long body. I felt it was a little too dangerous, given my beginner-mind. I bought the Nighthawk, where I could plop both soles flat on the ground. Wish I’d bought the TransAlp, in retrospect. Nighthawk’s got all the caché of a sewing machine. And it can’t even competently handle a logging road.
NY Times: Revisiting the ‘Crack Babies’ Epidemic That Was Not.
This makes me want to spit nails. It wasn’t an epidemic. But it existed — don’t try to wash it away. Until you’ve taken infant CPR, walked the floors with a newborn who won’t stop crying from suffering detox, having to remain calm when their heart monitor goes off (again), and more … I’d certainly like to give these folks a piece of my mind. Not a one of these ‘investigative reports’ ever talks with foster parents of the era.
Nice. Perhaps it is finally time to walk away from Flickr. I’ll have to look more closely when I have a moment.
NY Times: High Plains Aquifer Dwindles, Hurting Farmers.
“And when the groundwater runs out, it is gone for good. Refilling the aquifer would require hundreds, if not thousands, of years of rains.” The American frontier was built on the model of using up resources and moving on to new pastures. Where will the Kansas farmers go? To the breadbasket of Russia?
CNet: Adobe unplugs Creative Cloud sync tool during transition.
Turned mine off. I was getting annoyed by the constant “Creative Cloud can’t sync” messages. I don’t use the feature anyway, at the present time. Leaving it deactivated still gives me quick access to the Creative Cloud website from the menu bar. Note the link at the bottom of the article to the CC Status page.
Gizmodo: Get SwiftKey, Our Favorite Android Keyboard, On Sale for 50% Off.
When I upgraded my HTC Sensation 3G, I lost Swype, and was completely dissatisfied with the standard ICS keyboard. SwiftKey introduced their “Flow” gesture beta, and I immediately downloaded it and was even happier than with Swype. The gesture feature is now rolled into the main SwiftKey app. It allows me to swipe and type on a small screen with big fingers pretty fast. I have no commercial connection here, just my recommend based on use.
The only problem? I keep swiping on my iOS devices, and getting frustrated. Apple? You really need to get something like this working on your products.
You thought Ryanair’s attendants had it bad? Wait ‘til you hear about their pilots - Home News - UK
“The RPG [‘Ryanair Pilot Group’] organised the letter amid concerns that the airline was making the majority of its pilots self-employed. Under the scheme, pilots sign a contract binding them to fly exclusively for Ryanair – but not as employees. The pilots are then paid for the work they do but have to pay for all their own expenses, including uniforms, identity cards, transport and hotel accommodation. The contracted pilots have no pension scheme or medical insurance unless they set it up themselves.” The golden days of richly paid and overqualified former WWII aviators is long, long gone.
Atlantic: Facebook, One Year Later: What Really Happened in the Biggest IPO Flop Ever.
“The consensus among hedge funds on the West Coast was to short the stock on day one.” Gawd. After missing out on various other tech IPOs, I actually contemplated dropping some coin this time around. So glad I didn’t.
ArtDaily: The central role of the Eucharist in the Middle Ages is explored.
Interesting history within.
Supercharged: 1955 Custom Ford T-Bird by Bo Zolland.
Uh-huh. Part of me is titillated, the other part horrified. Perhaps it’s just the baby blue paint. All the other shots are from the rear; I can’t judge without seeing the whole thing.
Guardian.UK: Yahoo poised to buy Tumblr for rumoured $1.1bn.
Well, it was nice while it lasted.
Youtube: Europa Report Trailer (2013).
Anyone else had their sci-fi memory tweaked? This looks awfully like a riff on a couple of chapters of 2010: Odyssey Two by Arthur C. Clarke. You remember … where the Chinese ship Tsien lands on Europa, ultimately destroyed by a light-sensitive life form as the crew tries to pump water into their tanks for use as fuel? The riveting solo survivor monologue of Dr. Chang? Chapters 7-11.
If you didn’t know, this is the site to watch as we approach solar maximum.
Standout oil paintings of vintage objects. We had a fan like that when I was a kid. I was under the strictest of orders - “You do NOT PUT YOUR FINGERS NEAR THIS FAN.”
BlessThisStuff: 1954 Ferrari 500 Mondial Spyder.
Well, if I can’t have a Porsche 550, I suppose this’ll do.
Youtube: A grizzly Ate My GoPro!!!
Colgate and Listerine, dude. Get on it.
Motorcyclist: 2014 Honda Grom | First Look.
Aw, damn. Nothing’s quite as fun as a small bike you can throw around. If it were only 250cc’s. A 125 won’t pull my 185lbs up hills.
Guardian.UK: Marines shield Obama from the Washington rain – but not from criticism.
Just out of curiousity, I’m going to have to see how long I could hold up an umbrella in that position. Looks like a deltoid/bicep burner. Props to the Marines. Ignore the catcalls.
WaPo: The scandals are falling apart.
But the evidenceless allegations against the President will resound in the echoing brains of conservative-ideology audiences. “Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.”
TG’s Political Wire: Republican Claims on Benghazi Prove False.
So, who was the Republican who altered the quotes? An investigation should take place, shouldn’t it, since this is the season of freewheeling substanceless investigations?
CJR: Peggy Noonan loses it on the IRS story.
ArtDaily: Death mask of Napoleon to be auctioned.
“I came to the conclusion that the best thing to do was to offer it for sale in the hope that, as a result, it was something more people would then be able to see and enjoy.” Nothing cheers one up more than a nice deathmask.
WritersDigest: If You’re Feeling Down and Out About a Rejection Letter …
“But my point is an artist will not quit. He doesn’t have a choice. An artist is not going to do other things. It isn’t a matter of being brave.” Goes for artists in any medium/media.
The Economist: Microcredit—Put to the test.
Pacific Standard: Thoughts of Faith and God Decrease Tolerance for Ambiguity.
HuffPo: Pat Robertson Tells Wife Of Cheating Husband To Be Grateful For Marriage.
“Responding to a question from a viewer, Robertson said that married men ‘have a tendency to wander’ and it is the spurned wife’s job to focus on the positive and make sure the home is so enticing, he doesn’t want to stray.” And HuffPo expected … exactly what? This from a man surrounded by ladies with beehive hairdos.
Economist: Barack Obama and the presidency — W’s apprentice.
“Increasingly, however, the exigencies of office seem to be trumping the legal qualms of the campaign trail—something Mr Obama’s supporters will regret when a future Republican president perfects the dodges he is pioneering.”
SciAm: 400 PPM— Can Artificial Trees Help Pull CO2 from the Air?
Guardian.UK: Dan Brown still can’t write, but he deserves some respect.
Slate: Margaret Atwood discusses science fiction in a Slate podcast.
I admire her comments about positivity and its effects, around nine minutes in.
National Review: Theater Night — Vigilantes 1, Vulgarians 0.
“So I minded my own business by utilizing my famously feline agility to deftly snatch the phone out of her hand and toss it across the room, where it would do no more damage. She slapped me and stormed away to seek managerial succor.”
ArtDaily: Paris police boost efforts to protect tourists.
“It will also begin distributing leaflets in heavily touristed areas, in English and French, warning against a trend that involves young criminals asking visitors to make donations to false charities or to sign false petitions, distracting them from pickpockets.” Heavy theft in the City of Light.
MSNBC: Charges dropped against Florida teen over amateur science experiment.
“The Florida teenager who was arrested two weeks ago for causing a small explosion on the campus of her high school will not be charged with a crime. Kiera Wilmot, 16, was arrested by police in Bartow, Florida, after conducting an unauthorized science experiment which lightly damaged an eight ounce plastic water bottle.” My emphasis.