Happy Friday everyone. I hope your week went well and you've got something fun planned for the weekend (can I recommend listening to our podcast episode?). Hit the replies for a new video from CGP Grey called "Not the Confederate Flag" that looks at the flag's history. Learning is fun!
The AV Club has a fun article about great albums with unfortunately designed album covers. Thought maybe on this Friday afternoon it'd be fun open up the discussion to our little neck of the Internet. So let's hear it, what album do you love listening to but hate looking at?
Sculptures out of crayons? Why of course. I am particularly fond of the Batman, Hobbes, and Star Wars ones, but these are all pretty awesome. I hope everyone has a great Friday and a good weekend. Thanks for reading our website.
If you drag and drop an MP3 onto this website, it'll play while you fly over a 3D rendered landscape that moves in time with the music. Not a bad way to pass the time on Friday. Hope everyone has a great weekend.
Due to some scheduling issues with travel (insert Thomas looks like he doesn't want to be there joke here), our podcast episode won't be recorded until tonight. Gee, I wonder what we're going to talk about? I hope to have that edited and posted early tomorrow morning, so make sure you subscribe to our feed if you don't want miss that once it goes up. In other update news: I recently tore out all of the crap on our Tumblr page to make it a far better reading experience not only via a web browser, but also in your dashboard. All of our formatting, tags, snark, and little extras should work far better now and the full desktop experience is actually a pretty nice, no distractions, view of...
Another week has passed and I've got a couple things to share with you today. First up is a book of poetry that was just published by a long time AP.net reader, Scott Laudati, called Hawaiian Shirts in the Electric Chair -- a music video for one of the poems can be found in the replies. Thanks for reading the website for over 14 years Scott! Really appreciate it. The second is a video of Tommy Caldwell navigating Pitch 15 of The Dawn Wall on Yosemite's El Capitan. Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson did this climb last week and it's been called the most difficult climb ever completed. My hands got sweaty just watching the video. Hope everyone had a good week, and here's to the weekend!
Philip Ball, writing for Scientific America, explains how game theorists have "cracked poker." Hope everyone has a great Friday and a great weekend.
A new computer algorithm can play one of the most popular variants of poker essentially perfectly. Its creators say that it is virtually “incapable of losing against any opponent in a fair game”. This is a step beyond a computer program that can beat top human players, as IBM's chess-playing computer Deep Blue famously did in 1997 against Garry Kasparov, at the time the game's world champion. The poker program devised by computer scientist Michael Bowling and his colleagues at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, along with...
In 2012, Joe Ayoob broke the world record for the longest paper airplane flight with a plane designed by John Collins. Hit the replies to see Collins demonstrates how to fold that plane. Happy Friday everyone, hope you have a great weekend.
If you take a look at record grooves at around 1000x magnification -- you can see the waveforms of the music itself. You can also check the replies for a video of a record playing under a microscope. Happy Friday everyone!
Ariana Grande was criticized a bit for the lyrics to her song with Zedd, "Break Free," being grammatically incoherent. She's responded by saying that she resisted the lyrics, but was ultimately persuaded by the song's writer and non-native English speaker, Max Martin. Watch the songs lyric video in the replies.
Some pop songs are timeless classics. Some play endlessly at weddings and on oldies stations. Others find renewed vigor in movie trailers or because their lyrics can be applied to Golden Grahams. Still others just, well – disappear. We started with the top 10 songs of each year from 1900 to present (as calculated by the Whitburn Project), recording each song’s Google hits, Wikipedia presence and last.fm scrobbles to calculate an obscurity score.
What about now? Since 1990, it seems that the average song length has sort of stabilized around 250 seconds (over 4 minutes). Maybe that’s because humans prefer 4 minute songs. Clearly there is no technological limit to song length anymore, right?
As part of the New Museum's solo exhibition devoted to the Icelandic artist Ragnar Kjartansson, a group of 15 musicians have been playing a single song all day, every day the museum is open. When the gig ends along with the show at the end of the month, they estimate it will have been performed roughly 6,000 times, for 308 hours, and with the help of several dozen gallons of beer.
Dr. David Glowacki, a leading US scientist and research fellow at the Royal Society in London, was booted from the Bristol Old Vic after he tried to crowdsurf during Handel's "Messiah."
Dr Glowacki has attacked the decision to force him to leave the concert by saying: ‘Classical music, trying to seem cool and less stuffy, reeks of some sort of fossilised art form undergoing a midlife crisis.’
A reddit user going by andrewmn8 who says he exepriences chromesthesia (a variant of synesthesia where a person experiences visual representations of sound) has put his sights to paper. He drew representations of what he sees while listening to "Get Lucky" and "Gangnam Style," among four others. Check out the relatively crude yet interesting paintings in the replies, and maybe submit a song for him to paint in the future.
Why does this matter? As I’ll get to later in this series, it can seem weird that a team of college sophomores are specifically targeting preteens with substantially sexed-up songs. I’m not trying to pull off one of those ludicrous “we need to protect our children” crusades, but no matter how we slice it: Isn’t it slightly off-putting that this has become, for a significant number of artists, a reproducible business model?
Scientists have created a living cell with DNA containing more than just the familiar A, T, C, and G units.
Hailed as a breakthrough by other scientists, the work is a step towards the synthesis of cells able to churn out drugs and other useful molecules. It also raises the possibility that cells could one day be engineered without any of the four DNA bases used by all organisms on Earth. "What we have now is a living cell that literally stores increased genetic information," says Floyd Romesberg, a chemical biologist at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, who led the 15-year effort.
Need to know how to stop a wedding when your beloved is going to marry someone else? WikiHow has you covered. I think we found the end of the internet.
If you were not able to contact her before hand, and you are sure that you want to proceed, find out the location of the wedding. Unless you have been invited, you will have to find out where the wedding ceremony is to be held, and the exact time. Ask family members or mutual friends if it doesn't appear too suspicious, or perhaps check the wedding notices in the local newspaper.
It's Friday ... you knew I'd post something different on the news feed ... you didn't know when, just that it was coming. Ok, so pop-quiz hotshot: How many US states are at least partially north of the southernmost part of Canada? Hint: More than you think. Double hint: Way more than you think. Hit the replies for the answer.
Rather than empathy, the contagious nature of yawning may be highlighting something very different. “We’re getting insight into the human herd: yawning as a primal form of sociality,” Provine says. Yawning may be, at its root, a mechanism of social signalling. When we yawn, we are communicating with one another. We are sending an external sign of something internal, be it our boredom or our anxiety, our fatigue or our hunger—all moments when we may need a helping hand. In fact, yawning may be the opposite of what we generally think. It’s less likely a signal that you’re tired than a signal that it’s time for...
Swiss artist Zimoun took a bunch of packing peanuts and a bunch of fans and created an installation that looks a lot like a rolling ocean inside a warehouse at la Limonaia di Villa Saroli in Lugano, Switzerland. A video is in the replies if you can't make it to Switzerland to check it out anytime soon. I want to swim in it.
The researchers behind the study, Coastal Carolina University's Terry Pettijohn and Southern Mississippi's Donald Sacco, take as their dataset the Billboard country songs of the year from 1946 to 2008. They used text analysis software, and manual chord analysis and tempo measurement, to identify lyrical themes and musical properties of the songs. They then compared their findings to an index measuring the overall well-being of society, using indicators like unemployment, inflation, personal income growth, the suicide and homicide rates, the divorce rate, and...
Is this the happiest photo ever taken? Sometimes it's worth taking a few moments to reflect on something happy and enjoying life. I don't know about where you're at today -- but the sun is shining here in Portland and I've got a bunch of good music on my playlist.
It appears as though Walmart is running a contest where the store with the most Facebook likes will get a live performance from Miami-based rapper Pitbull. Someone has started a campaign to get the Walmart in Kodiak, Alaska, the most likes so Pitbull has to go play there. You can like the Kodiak Walmart page here.
Like, really...you can't make up today's news. A mother starting singing Adele's "Rolling In the Deep" while her daughter was in a coma (she had been unresponsive for a week) and the comatose little girl smiled in response. Two days later, she was able to get out of bed.
If you couldn't tell from the last few news posts that I'm clearly in a weird mood as the day winds down, here's one for you (and no, I'm not posting about zombies): our galaxy is fucked ... in 6 billion years.