If you were around during the early days of the World Wide Web, you remember webcams. People would point a camera at something like the sky or a coffee pot and others would use their browser to check it out.
You might be thinking no one does that any more, but if you did, you’d be wrong!
To see what I mean, go here. That is specifically for the Northern Lights, but if you scroll down you can see many others as well.
Still a nice way to see the world without leaving your room.
I thought this piece was great: The English Word That Hasn’t Changed in Sound or Meaning in 8,000 Years. It turns out the world “lox” has not changed meaning in all that time. As the linguist in the piece explains:
One of my favorite words is lox,” says Gregory Guy, a professor of linguistics at New York University. “The pronunciation in the Proto-Indo-European was probably ‘lox,’ and that’s exactly how it is pronounced in modern English,” he says. “Then, it meant salmon, and now it specifically means ‘smoked salmon.’ It’s really cool that that word hasn’t changed its pronunciation at all in 8,000 years and still refers to a particular fish.”
That’s a great piece. Not just for the story of the word “lox”, but on the study of language and its origin. Recommended. It makes me want to run out and get a plate!
(Photo by Patrick Perkins on Unsplash)
This is pretty amazing. This Etsy account YesteryearPropStore seems to be selling many of the neon signs found in Blade Runner.
If I ran an establishment, I would love to have this one out front:
While there has been a lot of talk lately about space travel due to the billionaire space race, I want to highlight something people rarely mention but should. It’s that it is the anniversary of Apollo’s First Lunar Rover, Driven 50 Years Ago. The Atlantic has a great story on it, including amazing photos.
It’s crazy to think that not only did we land on the moon, but we brought a car with us to drive on the moon! That’s amazing, to me.
In the film Ad Astra with Brad Pitt, there’s a great chase scene with Lunar Rovers. Nothing quite so exciting like that happened during the Apollo missions, but the fact that we brought a car to the moon is exciting as it is. Plus it is still parked up there! I hope the parking rates aren’t too expensive 🙂
It’s true! A planet is going to make a fly by. According to Kottke, the minor planet 2014 UN271 is about to visit our solar system. By 2031 it should be about as close to the sun as Saturn is!
I hope we can get some good views of it while it is in the area.
For more on it, see the Kottke article. He also has links to more pieces on it.
(Photo by Guillermo Ferla on Unsplash )
This is lovely:
I especially like “Parent” and “Dog”.
More on that, as well as the source of the image, here.
Remember tying two tin cans together with string to communicate? Well according to this article at BBC News…
Engineers at a small British internet service provider have successfully made a broadband connection work over 2m (6ft 7in) of wet string.
The connection reached speeds of 3.5 Mbps (megabits per second), according to the Andrews and Arnold engineer who conducted the experiment.
The point of the experiment appears to have been purely to see if it was achievable.
Cool! See the article for details.
For the meantime, I think I’ll stick with copper and fiber.
(For more on tin can phones, check out: Tin can telephone – Wikipedia)
Posted in fun
Tagged cool, fun, Internet
In the early days of the Web, there were several sites that would feature the Web Site of the Day. It would be something someone put together that was smart or wacky of useful. Those days were good.
Good news! Here is a list of web sites that Buzzfeed put together that made me think of those days: 38 Super Useful And Fun Websites You Never Knew You Needed In Your Life.
Every day check out a different one!
In a similar vein, here is a list of places in New York that have been around forever that are still going. Likewise, check out a different one every day: The 212 – The New York Times
The Internet can feel stale. Let’s make it fresh again.
(Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash )
If you need some ambient sounds, you should check out: A Soft Murmur
It’s great for a number of reasons:
- It has lots of different sounds, from rain to coffee shops to white noise.
- You can mix sounds together (e.g., rain and thunder and birds)
- You can create your own mixes and share them with people!
Anyway, it’s good. You should check it out.
(Photo by reza shayestehpour on Unsplash )
I love these playful modular cabinets that put a quirky spin on storage by using geometric shelves found at Yanko Design. You can mix and match the pieces to design the best storage for your room. And if you get tired of it, you just have to reposition things and you have a whole new look. Fantastic.
It may be hard to believe that anything to do with getting a stapler could be interesting. But these two are.
First here is one you can get to staple your own skin if you are injured. This one isn’t dramatic but if you want to staple a booklet, it’s perfect.
(Photo by Viktor Talashuk on Unsplash )
Posted in cool
Tagged cool, staplers, tools
This lovely short film, How To Be At Home, by Andrea Dorfman, and provided by the National Film Board of Canada, reunites filmmaker Andrea Dorfman with poet Tanya Davis to provide timely guidance on how to get through the pandemic, and other such isolation. Highly recommended.
Posted in art
Tagged art, Canada, cool, film, nfb
Apple Watches are cool. I love them. So do many others.
But if want to have have a cool digital watch that is also a classic, you want this, I think:
It comes in silver and gold. You can order it, here.
Posted in cool
Tagged cool, timex, watches
There is this: the Lego/Adidas collaboration!
If I were a Lego fan I would so want a pair. They debut September 25.
See the link for more pics and details.
If you are in the market for headphones and you work by yourself at home, consider the GW100 from Grado. If you need convincing, read this rave review in Forbes. Working in a space with others isn’t great with them because they are open back (i.e. others can hear the sound). But WFH alone, these would be perfect. Sure, you can also go with the wired versions that Grado makes. They are also great. Even the lower end models are excellent. However, the wireless is a great feature, especially if you want to move around some or want to avoid yet another wire to deal with.
In Canada, you can get the GW100 and so many more at Bay Bloor radio.
If you are tired of your view and want to look at something new, I highly recommend this site: WindowSwap.
WindowSwap gives you a random view of someone else’s window somewhere in the world. Not all the views are beautiful or interesting, but many are. For those of you wishing you could travel but can’t, this site will allow you to vicariously do it through this website.
(Image by Mari Madriz)
A very cool site that allows you to mess around with Gregorian chant music in all kinds of ways. Fun! And also great if you want to have it playing while you work Gregorian Voices • Relaxing Music Generator
This is fascinating: The Apollo 11 mission as told through the astronauts’ heart rates | Popular Science
A good reminder that even the best prepared and most cool can still have elevated heart levels under stress.
You might need this: This desktop lightbox makes your lighting setup as advanced as your camera | Yanko Design.
Ok, you like do not need this. But it is a pretty cool lightbox. Worth checking out, if only to fantasize about.
What if your goal was to see all the Vermeer paintings in the world? There are not that many: you just need to travel a lot to do it. One person set out to do that. See Vermeer Goals for details.
A visit to this page is a must for Blade Runner fans: Blade Runner Souvenir Magazine: A Fascinating Blast from the Past from the Heart of Ridley Scott’s Masterpiece • Cinephilia & Beyond.
The Official Collector’s Edition Blade Runner Souvenir Magazine is a wonderful source of information, abounding in great photos and articles; a genuine treat both for hardcore fans of the film and all the newbies who just got introduced to the world of Rick Deckard. There are a lot of fascinating stuff here, but we’re especially excited about the interviews with Philip K. Dick, Ridley Scott, Harrison Ford and Douglas Trumbull. We’re incredibly thankful to webmaster Netrunner from brmovie.com, who put a lot of effort into digitalizing the magazine and even contacted Mr. Friedman to get his blessing for the endeavor. While Netrunner shaped the material by separating photos from the accompanying text, we chose to offer you a .cbr file of greater resolution and quality, so you can browse the content more easily. If we may, we’d like to suggest using a little program called ComicRack for checking out this priceless blast from the past. Enjoy the read!
Despite being burned too many times by Kickstarter projects, this one seems so worthwhile I feel I must promote it: Color Problems – A Book by Emily Noyes Vanderpoel by The Circadian Press with Sacred Bones — Kickstarter. It’s a great project to recreate a classic book, and it will be a boon to many people if it gets off the ground. Anyone interested in the visual arts should check it out and contribute some way if you can.
I hope it’s successful, that the project initiators have 1) their act together 2) actually release something tangible and 3) in a timely manner that is high quality. (Many of my recent Kickstarter projects have failed at 1, 2 and 3.)
Good luck to them.
I think it is great that fast food courts and other eating areas have seen a rise in places serving grain bowls. They are a nutritious alternative to many other meals there.
However, they aren’t cheap, and to be honest, it’s not that hard to make your own grain bowls in 6 easy steps.
Start with this: Healthy Lunch Bento Box Ideas – Bon Appétit | Bon Appetit.
Then cook some grains, roast some vegetables, saute some greens and prepare some proteins. When you get to work, toss on the acid and the dressing and you just saved yourself some money and a trip to the food court.
This is a pretty cool DIY project: The AIY Voice Kit Lets You Build a Google Home for Only $35.
Now, I have my qualms about letting Google have access to so much personal information. If you do not have such qualms and you want to build a cool project, click the link and head on over to Wired, where they have more information on it and how to get it.
Posted in cool
Tagged birds, cool
It’s only been out for a very short time, but already there’s at least one primer for it, here: Ten Things I Wish I Knew When I Started ‘Pokémon GO’ – Forbes. If you want to leapfrog others playing it, read this and then get going.
According to a post by Clive Thompson,
Recently, two scientists got interested in the poem, because they realized these two facts could be used to determine precisely what time of year Sappho wrote the poem.
The poem, the post, and the work the scientists did are all great. Highly recommended. (Click on the link to the post for more details.)
The good folks at Glitchaus have taken an oddity of the digital world – glitches – and used it as the basis of their designs of scarves and wraps. If you are in need of either, or you’d just like to see some innovative fashion, it’s worth visiting their site.
I find this ad powerful. And very inspiring. It’s from the past London Paralympics and if you need a jolt of motivation to help you get going on your workout, check it out:
Here are two interesting pieces of innovative things people have done with Minecraft. The first one, New Minecraft Mod Teaches You Code as You Play, is a novel way to learn how to code. If you have a young one who loves Minecraft and whom you want to learn how to code, this may be a good way to do this. The second one is an amazing story found on Reddit: My experiences with running a Minecraft Server on an IBM Mainframe.
I was amazed he managed to get it to run, albeit slowly. Needless to say, a Mainframe is not an ideal platform for this software. Still, that he did get it to run is a testament to his ingenuity and also the flexibility of Minecraft and the IBM Mainframe.
It’s not a hoax: there is a gargoyle on a 13th century abbey that looks like something out of Alien. Seems the old gargoyles were falling apart and artisans were recently brought in to make new ones…and well, someone took a few liberties.
All of the new beasts attached to the abbey are excellent. You can see more of them, and more of the story, here: ‘Alien’ gargoyle on ancient abbey from BBC News
These paper sculptures by Wolfram Kampffmeyer (aka Paperwolf) are gorgeous. You buy them and make them yourself. Simply go to Etsy, here, and order a from a range of different animals, sizes, and prices. Great gift idea, too.
If you want to see more of them, you can also check them out here: DIY Geometric Paper Animal Sculptures by Paperwolf. Not surprisingly, from Colossal.
There was a lot of scoffing when Apple recently released this
and claimed the colour was rose gold. It’s pink, was the common reply. But as this piece shows ( The Semiotics of “Rose Gold” – The New Yorker), rose gold is a specific material. It refers to an alloy of gold to which copper has been added. For that matter, white gold, which is an alloy with nickel or manganese, is also a specific material. Jewelers know this, of course, and Apple is smart to associate with the metal (gold) vs the colour.
The New Yorker piece is fascinating. Worth reading, especially if you are skeptical about the colour.
This is a really beautiful bridge. It is relaxing to look at…it’s likely more so to walk upon.
For more images of it, see Infinite Bridge in Denmark – Fubiz Media
The link to her store is here: Light Bulb Pendant Necklace by PortalJewelry on Etsy. Please send her all your spare cash so she can get rich and take care of her Dad. 🙂
It seems only yesterday I was helping her set up a blog to write about her summer, and now this. Time flies.
The first one is a summary of his new show in L.A.: David Hockney unveils new works on perspective created in Los Angeles | Art and design | The Guardian.
The second one is a meaty interview: David Hockney: ‘Just because I’m cheeky, doesn’t mean I’m not serious’ | Art and design | The Guardian.
I enjoyed the interview alot: it is a great review of his career, plus it talks about many other great artists of the second part of the 20th century.
Anyone interested in modern art would enjoy both of these.
It’s great that SpaceX has put travel posters to Mars among their other photos on flickr (SpaceX Photos | Flickr). Of the three I saw, the one above was the one I liked the best. Head over to Flickr and check out the others.
It’s fun now, but perhaps such advertisements will be less fantastical before the 22nd century.
With Diatom » SketchChair software, you can.
These chairs aren’t for everyone….
…but as far as cool ideas go, I think this is one of them.