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Posted by Mark Frauenfelder

On the Cool Tools Show podcast, Kevin Kelly and I interviewed my sister, Wendy, about some of her favorite tools.

Our guest this week is Wendy Frauenfelder. Wendy likes to cook, fix things, pretend to be a bartender, and do therapy dog work. She also is fascinated with wild yeast and slow food.

Subscribe to the Cool Tools Show on iTunes | RSS | Transcript | Download MP3 | See all the Cool Tools Show posts on a single page

Show notes:

stanleystubby
Stanley 66-358 Stanley Stubby Ratcheting MultiBit Screwdriver ($10)
"I always keep a screwdriver in the kitchen, just so that I don't have to go to the garage if I something inside the house that I need to work on. So this is my new screwdriver inside the house, and there's a couple things I like. First, it's small. It's like four-and-a-half inches long, and so it fits in a junk drawer really easily. The second thing I really like about it is it's a ratcheting screwdriver. So, if you're fixing a knob on a cabinet or something you don't have to spin it around in your hand, you can just kind of ratchet it in, which I love. But you can also make it just a steady, regular kind of screwdriver. Then the third thing that I love about it is you unscrew the cap on the top of the screwdriver and inside are five other tips. So you've got three Phillips head and three regular screwdriver tips, and they vary from pretty tiny to large and fat, and they're right there in the cap, so you can grab your screwdriver without knowing what kind of screw you've gotta work on, and you'll have the right tip."

masonjar
24 oz Mason Drinking Jar & Stainless Steel Straw ($10.50)
"It's actually a Ball jar, not a mason jar, and then it's got the regular kind of screw-on lid, but whoever made this took the little flat part of the lid on top and put a rivet in it and made a hole so you can stick a straw in there. It is actually pretty waterproof. I wouldn't say you should leave it upside down in your car, but I'll usually put a smoothie in here, and every once in a while I'll shake it to just kind of mix up the liquid again, and it's doesn't come out at all. So, it's that waterproof. … A lot of times these will come with a metal straw, and I don't like that because, since I drink a smoothie out of it, I'm afraid I'm never really getting that clean, so I found some straws on Amazon that fit to the bottom. It had to be an extra-long straw. It fits to the bottom of the jar, and it's got a little bend in it, and then I just toss it when I'm done. … I just feel like glass gets really clean. And you don't have to worry about BPAs." spoonstraw
GFDesign Drinking Spoon Straws ($10.50)
"I was looking at cocktail items, and this caught my eye … We started using it when I was making mojitos, and you gotta stir up a mojito, because you've got some granulated sugar in the bottom of it when you muddle the mint leaves. So you stir it up with this thing, and then I'm thinking, 'This is great, because then you just leave it in there, and you sip through it.' And if your sugar didn't all dissolve, you can still start drinking your mojito and kind of stir it as you go along."

buymeapie
Buy me a pie!
"I am kind of like a connoisseur of grocery shopping list apps. [This app] is actually organized by store, so I have a Whole Foods list, a Target list, and a Costco list, basically, and I can open whichever one I want, and then I can add items to whichever one I want. You can have the same item in different lists. You can have as many lists as you want if you buy the paid version. I think the free version you're limited to maybe two or three. …What I really like about it is that you can color-code these items by grocery store area or by aisle. So everything that's veggie is green and fruit's green, and meat is under the red category, and cold foods are blue and frozen foods are gray. So that way, as you're going through your list, you go to produce and you just see all the produce that you need to get is all in one section."

We have hired an editor to edit the Cool Tools podcast. It costs us $300 a month. So far, Cool Tools listeners have pledged $277 a month to the podcast. Please consider supporting us on Patreon. We have nice rewards for people who contribute! – MF

[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Mark Frauenfelder

Colin Furze’s debut book, This Book Isn't Safe features ten inventions kids can make at home with step by step instructions. Inventions include "Concrete-Crusher Boots," the "Fab Frisbee Flinger," and the "Downhill Racer." Below, Colin's instructions for making the Brilliant Bedroom-Tidy Pulley:

https://youtu.be/NTYh6sIHKvE

[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Rob Beschizza

That science-fiction extravaganza Dune allegorizes contemporary themes of imperialism, economic addiction to oil, and religious war is obvious. But it turns out that Frank Herbert's masterpiece owes much to one particular book in particular: Lesley Blanch's brilliant, half-forgotten Sabres of Paradise, about the warlords of the Caucasus, where Europe and Asia meet.

Anyone who has obsessed over the mythology of Dune will immediately recognize the language Herbert borrowed from Blanch’s work. Chakobsa, a Caucasian hunting language, becomes the language of a galactic diaspora in Herbert’s universe. Kanly, from a word for blood feud among the Islamic tribes of the Caucasus, signifies a vendetta between Dune’s great spacefaring dynasties. Kindjal, the personal weapon of the region’s Islamic warriors, becomes a knife favored by Herbert’s techno-aristocrats. As Blanch writes, “No Caucasian man was properly dressed without his kindjal.”

Herbert is ecumenical with his borrowing, lifting terminology and rituals from both sides of this obscure Central Asian conflict. When Paul Atreides, Dune’s youthful protagonist, is adopted by a desert tribe whose rituals and feuds bear a marked resemblance to the warrior culture of the Islamic Caucasus, he lives at the exotically named Sietch Tabr. Sietch and tabr are both words for camp borrowed from the Cossacks, the Czarist warrior caste who would become the great Christian antagonists of Shamyl’s Islamic holy warriors.

Herbert also lifted two of Dune’s most memorable lines directly from Blanch. While describing the Caucasians’ fondness for swordplay, Blanch writes, “To kill with the point lacked artistry.” In Dune, this becomes “[k]illing with the tip lacks artistry,” advice given to a young Paul Atreides by a loquacious weapons instructor. A Caucasian proverb recorded by Blanch transforms into a common desert aphorism. “Polish comes from the city, wisdom from the hills,” an apt saying for a mountain people, becomes “Polish comes from the cities, wisdom from the desert” in Dune.

It's not just words, either. The whole book -- a literary distillation of history, not rigorous scholarship -- is suffused with the weird atmosphere of Arrakis. It's free of charge on Amazon Kindle Prime right now, so Dune fans have no excuses!

Fic Rec: Falling Slowly (H/D)

Sep. 21st, 2017 05:03 pm
ladybahiya: LadyBelz (Default)
[personal profile] ladybahiya
Title: Falling Slowly
Author: Constance1
Status: Complete @ 16 chapters
Archived @: Archive of Our Own
Summar: When Harry sacrificed himself at the Battle of Hogwarts, his conversation with Dumbledore went a little differently than he let on to everyone. He was allowed to come back - but only for five years. Harry kept the secret for two and a half years until eventually confessing the truth to none other than Draco Malfoy.

Lady B's Observations: Better have a box of tissue handy. It's sweet/funny/angsty/sad/happy all at the same time. I was crying buckets by the end.
[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Rusty Blazenhoff

When I was a kid growing up back East, my parents would bring me to a place called Edaville Railroad. It's a theme park now but, back then, the main attraction was a train that went through a track in cranberry bogs. During the holidays, they turned those bogs into a sort of winter wonderland with bright lights and festive sculptures. Passengers were the audience, and the decorated bogs became a kind of "stage."

I remember it being a lot of fun.

Well, for three days in late August, a group of artists in Germany took this idea to a whole new and incredibly impressive level. I love this so much!

Over 500 volunteers and residents in the "Bewegtes Land" art project entertained passengers with a super fun and quirky art performance, all happening along the train's nearly 19-mile route.

Watch the video to see how they surprised their moving audience along the way.

The route went from Jena to Naumburg, a quiet area in the Saale valley's countryside not known for tourists.

All I have to say is that someone really needs to do a U.S. version of this. Pretty please.

(TwistedSifter)

(no subject)

Sep. 21st, 2017 12:44 pm
shyfoxling: fox in a witch's hat and Ravenclaw colors scarf with a wand and shiny swirly bits (general (shyfoxling))
[personal profile] shyfoxling
I see that someone has nominated last year's TV series of Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency for [community profile] yuletide. That could be interesting, if anyone takes it up.

(wow, it's within 1 character of tag length limit!)

The Good Place: Season 2, Episode 1

Sep. 21st, 2017 12:32 pm
rachelmanija: (Default)
[personal profile] rachelmanija
Absolutely fantastic. Do not click on cut unless you've already seen it. The whole series is streaming on nbc.com.

Read more... )
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Posted by Rob Reid

To hear a wide-ranging interview about the real-world risks we humans could face from a rogue superintelligence, hit play, below. My guest is author and documentary filmmaker James Barrat. Barrat’s 2014 book Our Final Invention was the gateway drug that ushered me into the narcotic realm of contemplating super AI risk. So it’s on first-hand authority that I urge you to jump in – the water’s great!

This is the seventh episode of my podcast series (co-hosted by Tom Merritt), which launched here on Boing Boing last month. The series goes deep into the science, tech, and sociological issues explored in my novel After On – but no familiarity with the novel is necessary to listen to it.

The danger of artificial consciousness has a noble pedigree in science fiction. In most minds, its wellspring is 2001: A Space Odyssey, which features HAL 9000 – an onboard computer that decides to kill off its passengers before they can disconnect it (spoiler: HAL’s rookie season ends – rather abruptly – with a 1-1 record).

James’s interest in this subject was piqued when he interviewed 2001’s author, Arthur C. Clarke, back in the pertinent year of 2001. Clarke’s concerns about superintelligence went beyond the confines of fiction. And he expressed them cogently enough to freak James out to this day.

Among James’s worries is that Hollywood has inoculated many of us from taking super AIs seriously by depicting them so preposterously. “Imagine if the Centers for Disease Control issued a serious warning about vampires,” he notes. “It’d take time for the guffawing to stop, and the wooden stakes to come out. Maybe we’re in that period right now with AI, and only an accident or a near-death experience will jar us awake.”

James and I discuss the “vampire problem” and many other issues in our interview. If you’re looking to cut back on the long, unproductive hours you currently waste on sleep, you should definitely give it a listen.

You can subscribe to the podcast within any podcast app. Simply use your app's search function (type in "After On") to find and subscribe. To subscribe via your computer on iTunes, just click here, then click the blue “View on iTunes” button (on the left side of the page), then click “Subscribe” (in a similar location) in the iTunes window. Or follow the feed http://afteron.libsyn.com/rss

[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Rob Beschizza

Starring Bryan Cranston, Isle of Dogs is a new stop-motion animated movie from Wes Anderson, director of Fantastic Mr. Fox and The Grand Budapest Hotel. Looks very Wes Andersony! And check out this cast:

jesse_the_k: Knitted red heart pulses larger within green and blue square (Beating heart of love GIF)
[personal profile] jesse_the_k
Thanks to a [personal profile] liv-triggered happy rabbit-hole I just read Marissa Lingen's fabulous post illuminating why most people find the experience of impairment so mystifying.

AND YOU MUST READ IT TOO!

http://mrissa.dreamwidth.org/720690.html

if you need convincing: an excerpt )
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Tired of screaming your throat raw when you’re reading the news? Let us express your existential angst electronically! At the push of a button our version of Edvard Munch’s The Scream will belt out a very satisfying scream. It’s a modern marvel!

(You can hear it here.)

Get an Electronic The Scream here!

[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Mark Frauenfelder

Amazon is running a good deal on theseAC wall outlets with dual USB charging ports. It has 4.8-amp charging across the USB ports, which is plenty to charge most device. The regular price is $23, but you can get it for $17 with the promo code OPZ757GL. You will probably also need a wallplate like this one.

[syndicated profile] boingboing_feed

Posted by Robert Spallone

Low-budget as well as adventurous travelers just got to spend a few sandy nights at the world’s first sand hostel on Australia’s Gold Coast.

The three-day event featured a hostel designed by Mad Max: Fury Road production designer Jon Dowding, according to Architectural Digest. And rooms started at only $7.50 per night. Unfortunately, bookings for the pop-up hostel on Kurrawa Beach ended Thursday.

Sand Hostel required approximately 53,000 pounds of sand used by sand sculptor Dennis Massoud during the 21 days of construction. Ceilings made of rafters and woven bamboo paneling were used to keep the structure stable for the tourism promotional effort.

For more photos click here.

https://youtu.be/AFmnkt7Q4GI

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Posted by David Pescovitz

Lego's new Star Wars Millennium Falcon set is the largest model kit the company has ever sold. It contains 7,500 pieces and retails from Lego.com for $800. It's sold out for now though, but you can get one from a scalper on Amazon for $1,800. Or you can watch Benjamin Große's video above of him building the kit, 20 hours compressed to less than two minutes.

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