Total Eclipse of the Heart, Literal Edition

posted by Stal on 2009.05.30, under Stal

[ Hat Tip: WJ ]

Pun of the Day

posted by Stal on 2009.05.29, under Stal

Oh, those typographers…

Edit: even more typography humor in today’s XKCD

Miracle Fruit

posted by Stal on 2009.05.28, under Stal

Miracle fruit is a West African berry that is commonly used for “flavor-tripping” parties. The berry rewires the way your palate perceive tastes for an hour or so, making Tabasco sauce taste like donut glaze or lemons taste like candy. Flavor-tripping parties were introduced last year in NY, and have since spread as the fruit becomes more widely available in Florida and online.

For all the conservative naysayers out there who are hellbent on not having fun:

Eating a berry causes the protein miraculin to bind with your taste buds, and induces sweetness when it comes in contact with acids. There are no dangers associated with eating miracle fruit, according to Dr. Linda Bartoshuk at the University of Florida’s Center for Smell and Taste.

A Tiny Fruit That Tricks the Tongue [NYT]

Blogging the internets

posted by Heath on 2009.05.28, under Heath

Since this blog has been heavily focused on internet culture, I thought I would keep my first post on-topic.

First, from the British magazine Prospect (via NYT), apparently they need an e-mail tax:

The time has come for a public sector remedy: a tax, perhaps no more than 2p, or 3c, on every email sent. Opponents will argue that collecting the tax is impossible or unfair. Yet the status quo is unworkable. Since early 2007 the global volume of spam has more than trebled. To stop this blizzard of unwanted messages, ISPs and most large businesses spend a sizeable chunk of their IT budget filtering out obvious junk. Despite this, most of us spend time each day clicking “delete”—and the deluge is getting worse. A unit tax on email would stop most spam.

The article brings up many of the most obvious objections; however, IMO, life would be less interesting without random people sending me e-mails with titles like “Become Superman” and “You Russia lvoe is her!”

In other internet culture news, the president is apparently planning on appointing a cybersecurity czar.  The czar “will have the most comprehensive mandate granted to such an official to date and will probably be a member of the National Security Council but will report to the national security adviser as well as the senior White House economic adviser”.  The czar will also be tasked with making sure nobody hurts the talking kittens. (h/t INFRASTRUCTURIST)

Meatspace vindicated

posted by Diomedes on 2009.05.26, under Diomedes

As many of you are well aware, I’ve been campaigning for years for the use of “meatspace” as ooposed to “real life”. The idea being that your life didn’t magically pause when you logged online, and your interactions are indeed real, only in a virtual space. Hence, “I did X in cyberspace” or “I did X in meatspace.”

Today, Cracked ran an article on 15 new words added to the OED. One of them was “Meatspace.”

I smiled, IMS.

Klingon Anti-Virus Software

posted by Stal on 2009.05.26, under Stal

In the department of Useless Nerd Endeavors, Sophos has released anti-virus software in Klingon. This is a blatant publicity stunt, but I have to applaud their chutzpah. A demonstration of the software set to YMCA is above.

Use Sophos’s Klingon Anti-Virus to quickly perform an on-demand scan and find viruses, spyware, adware, zero-day threats, Betazoid sub-ether porn diallers and Tribbles that your existing protection might have missed. The software can be run without deactivating your current anti-virus software. Phasers can be left set to stun.

[ Via GeekPress ]

Meme Scenery

posted by Stal on 2009.05.26, under Stal

You’ve seen the videos. You’ve sent them to others dozens of times. But can you name the internet meme based purely on the background?

New parlor game: Meme Scenery

[ Hat Tip: MW ]

The wolf shirt makes it to the BBC

posted by Diomedes on 2009.05.21, under Diomedes

There’s been, well I’m not sure it’s a meme, but more like an observation that’s circled the internet for several years about Wolf T-Shirts and those who wear them.

The idea is basically if you think back, somewhere in your past there was probably a very awkward, or strange person, and they were probably wearing a wolf t-shirt in many of your memories. The observations have become very nuanced, but in general, I think it caught on because almost everyone I know can think of someone who fits into that stereotype.

Anyhow, following in the tradition of other amazing amazon reviews that went viral, such as the Bic Pen reviews such as Good if you need to write on paper, Uranium ore or even fresh whole rabbit, the Three Wolf Moon T-shirt reviews went viral. Sales were boosted enough that the BBC ran an article on it. Enjoy, I did.

RunPee Optimizes Bathroom Breaks

posted by Stal on 2009.05.21, under Stal

It’s happened to all of us. After downing that 40 oz slurpee from 7-11 and climbing over half a dozen people to get to your movie seat, you realize…you have to go. Or should you hold it? Like pushing the bride into a swimming pool, are you about to ruin the most epic plot set-up conceivable by man? Like Moses wandering the desert, are you going to be completely lost when you get back for the rest of the movie?

Enter RunPee, a site that tells you the optimal times for breaks during a movie. (The logo is definitely one of the best ones I’ve ever seen.) If you are fine with missing a few minutes of exposition, RunPee will cue you to make a run for the bathroom at specific lines. Hitting the “unscramble” button will fill in what happens in that segment (what, you’re not going to watch Star Trek again?).

[ via LifeHacker/WJ ]

WWGT (What Would God Tweet) ?

posted by Diomedes on 2009.05.19, under Diomedes

If you’re looking for a reason to sign up for Twitter, this probably isn’t it. However if you’re looking for another twitter feed, watching the Bible condensed to 140 characters at a time in sms text & summary by WWGT, this is a good read.

God tells Abraham to deep-six son Isaac; changes mind when knife is drawn. Abe rewarded for faith. Isaac may need years of therapy – Gen. 22

Interview with the author can be found here.