Detroit's Fire Department Pop Can Alarms

#Technology

Thu, Dec 18th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to Five Thirty Eight, Detroit is significantly behind the times when it comes to technology. Things are so bad, fire stations use Rube Goldberg-like contraptions to be notified of a fire.

[...] For years, Detroit’s digital infrastructure has been a teetering mess, dependent on jury rigs of soda cans and spare change.

No, really.

Chuck Moore, a consultant for the city, described one fire station’s Rube Goldberg machine in September during testimony in Detroit’s bankruptcy trial: When an emergency alert comes in, a fax machine is triggered. This shoots out a piece of paper, which knocks over a soda can full of change, notifying those at the station of the situation. [...]

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Turn Your iPhone and iPad Into an Extra Display for Your Mac

Duet

#Products

Wed, Dec 17th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

The Duet app allows you to turn your existing iPad or iPhone into an extension of your Mac's monitor.

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Marking the Time with Hexadecimal Colour Codes

What colour is it?

#Internet

Tue, Dec 16th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

What Colour Is It? marks the time with a 24-hour clock, with the time itself being used to generate a change in the background's colour. Nine at night starts with lovely hues of plums and blues.

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"[The Pirate Bay has] made digital piracy a casual, inarguable part of the mainstream."

#Culture

Mon, Dec 15th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

With the Swedish police raid of The Pirate Bay's servers (they're back up already), The Washing Post's Caitlin Dewey looks at how the "most notorious file-sharing site" has made "digital piracy a casual, inarguable part of the mainstream."

In the late hours of Tuesday night, the Pirate Bay abruptly disappeared from the Internet, the result of a surprise raid on the site’s servers by Swedish police in Stockholm.

But forget the big-picture questions of Internet freedom or intellectual property. The real problem, for millions of Internet-users, is how am I going to watch TV?

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Submarine Sandwich

#Art

Sun, Dec 14th, 2014 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

PES, who was featured in the past with his hand grenade guacamole, has released his latest film, Submarine Sandwich. The meat shop's detail is particularly interesting to look at.

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"If the medical profession used research the way police use research, we’d still be using leeches"

#Opinion

Sun, Dec 14th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

With the recent shootings by white police officers prompting for calls for police reform, Bloomberg Businessweek's Drake Bennet looks at what an American police department should look like, if it was rebuilt from scratch.

[...] Law enforcement in the U.S. is primarily handled at the local and state level. Globally, the trend has been toward more centralized law enforcement agencies—two years ago the Netherlands consolidated its 25 regional police forces into one—but American policing remains as decentralized as it was when each colonial hamlet first organized its own night watch.

Today, there are 18,500 police departments in the country, and most have fewer than 10 members. They aren’t required to talk to each other, and in many cases, they fail to learn from one another’s mistakes—and successes. “We have national standards for doctors, for attorneys,” says John DeCarlo, a former police chief of Branford, Conn., and now…

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Restoring Metabolism to Youth Levels

#Health

Sat, Dec 13th, 2014 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

CBC reports that researchers at McMaster university have found a way to "restore metabolism to youth levels," potentially allowing for the treatment of obesity and diabetes.

Published in Nature Medicine Monday, researchers from McMaster University show that by inhibiting the hormone serotonin found in the gut of mice, the body's natural furnace, a lesser-known organ called brown adipose tissue, is more active and burns more calories.

Brown adipose tissue is found near the collar bone, and is also known as brown fat. It has no relation to white fat, the fat stores found all over the body, and was previously thought to only exist in rodents, hibernating animals and children, says the paper's co-author Gregory Steinberg, a professor of medicine at the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

“Our results are quite striking and indicate that inhibiting the production of [serotonin] may be very effective for reversing obesity…

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"It is basically your license on your phone."

Iowa's DOT issues digital driver's licenses

#Travel

Sat, Dec 13th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

The Iowa Department of Transportation has announced the release of a mobile app that will allow its citizens to carry their official driver's license on their smartphone. Reportedly, the digital equivalent will be accepted by law enforcement officers.

Trombino said it's only logical for the Iowa DOT to develop a mobile driver's license app as more and more Iowans rely on their smartphones to conduct routine business. He pointed to the watch on his wrist as one example of a device that many younger Iowans have replaced by using their smartphones.

The digital driver's license is just one example of the Iowa DOT's push towards expanded use of new technology. The transportation agency has already installed dashboard cameras on snowplows and it is expanding a program for "paperless construction projects." The DOT is also expanding driver's license kiosk locations, and it…

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"Encode your message into something innocent looking."

Spam Mimic

#Privacy

Fri, Dec 12th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Rather than encrypting your sensitive emails, Spam Mimic hides your message in plain sight by making it look like spam. Above, fake Russian.

Your messages will be safe and nobody will know they're encrypted!

There is tons of spam flying around the Internet. Most people can't delete it fast enough. It's virtually invisible. This site gives you access to a program that will encrypt a short message into spam. Basically, the sentences it outputs vary depending on the message you are encoding. Real spam is so stupidly written it's sometimes hard to tell the machine written spam from the genuine article.

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"It is not the first time that academic research has been used for brutal interrogations."

#Crime

Fri, Dec 12th, 2014 10:00 by capnasty NEWS

The torture methods used by the C.I.A. to "uncover intelligence" and "save lives" were based on studies designed to induce helplessness in dogs. Reportedly, the use of these techniques was justified since we now "no longer live in a world where people agree on what is ethical or even acceptable."

The American Psychology Association, divided and convulsed by the revelations of members’ participation in the interrogation program, has hired an independent auditor to investigate ties between the association and the intelligence agency. Debates over psychologists’ role at the base in Guantánamo Bay and so-called black sites have raged for years within the association.

The two architects of the C.I.A. interrogations were convinced that they would uncover intelligence that would save lives, their colleagues have told reporters, and that their methods were justified by the events of 9/11 and afterward.

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Experiment, a Crowdfunding Platform for Scientific Research

By scientists, for scientists

#Science

Thu, Dec 11th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Working along the same concept as Kickstarter or Indiegogo, Experiment provides a platform for researchers to receive funding for their next scientific research. From their FAQ:

What is the difference between Experiment and other crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter, IndieGoGo, etc?
Experiment is for scientists, by scientists. Just like how a scientist would use tools like a microscope, pipettor, or large hadron collider to help them in search of new discoveries, we believe funding tools for scientists should also be specialized for science.

What is the all-or-nothing funding model?
All research projects on Experiment must reach or surpass the funding goal within a set timeline before any money changes hands. If the project doesn't reach it's goal, no money is charged. Why is this? We ask researchers to clearly define a minimum budget that allows them to carry out their experiments. We wouldn’t want to compromise the quality of…

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Los Santos by Night

#Video

Wed, Dec 10th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Set to the tune of Jesse James 50's Manhattan, this video by YouTubber XXI shows just how beautiful the fictional city of Los Santos of GTAV looks and feels.

Explore the city of Los Santos at night in this little short of mine.

I really hope the PC version will have brand new filming features in its video editor. Cause here it really was all about loading a save, going to point A, filming, reloading a save, going to point B etc etc. Quite tedious you see x)

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"We Need a New Life"

Jaust's official music video

#Music

Tue, Dec 9th, 2014 23:29 by capnasty NEWS

YouTube video channel Thump shows off Jaust's We Need a New Life, looking more like a mini documentary on slot-car racers than a music video in itself. Slotcar-cam is cool.

We've got the premiere of Jaust's "We Need a New Life," a tune about instant gratification eking it's way into every aspect of our lives and the inevitable fallout that follows.

The video is a curveball, though, a peek into the lives of slot car racers in the Los Angeles underground. We don't really know how they made the connection, but in some understated way, it works. It doesn't hurt that the tune is absolutely ace and the subject matter of the video could be a documentary within itself.

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"Strategic, Timely Censorship"

World's censorship becoming more and more like China's

#Internet

Tue, Dec 9th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

According to Vauhini Vara of The New Yorker, it's not just China that limits Internet freedom. Citing the 2014 Freedom on the Internet report by Freedom House, while China is unsurprisingly the worse offender, "the rest of the world is gradually becoming more like China and less like Iceland."

[...] The researchers found that Internet freedom declined in thirty-six of the sixty-five countries they studied, continuing a trajectory they have noticed since they began publishing the reports in 2010.

Earp, who wrote the China section, said that authoritarian regimes might even be explicitly looking at China as a model in policing Internet communication. (Last year, she co-authored a report on the topic for the Committee to Protect Journalists.) China isn’t alone in its influence, of course. The report’s authors even said that some countries are using the U.S. National Security Agency’s widespread surveillance, which came to light…

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Police Body Worn Cameras May Not Actually Work

#Politics

Mon, Dec 8th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Although studies seem to indicate that when "officers know they are being watched, they behave differently," there is a concern that even with the use of cameras police officers will continue to use excessive force. Cited as an example, a grand jury "decided against charging the officer" believed to be responsible for the death of Eric Garner.

On Monday, President Obama requested $75 million in federal funds for a technology that, as he sees it, could help bridge the kinds of rifts between the police and public that surfaced in Ferguson, Missouri. It's a technology that Brown's own family has championed as a "positive change" that could result from the teen's death. The White House has proposed distributing some 50,000 body cameras to police departments across the country, since "evidence shows that body worn cameras help strengthen accountability and transparency, and that officers and civilians…

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"Everything about the world Orwell envisioned has become so obvious that one keeps running up against the novel's narrative shortcomings."

#Privacy

Sat, Dec 6th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

On The New York Times, Julian Assange of Wikileaks fame writes about the irony of reading George Orwell’s prophetic 1984 while living in a surveillance society.

The very concept of the Internet — a single, global, homogenous network that enmeshes the world — is the essence of a surveillance state. The Internet was built in a surveillance-friendly way because governments and serious players in the commercial Internet wanted it that way. There were alternatives at every step of the way. They were ignored.

At their core, companies like Google and Facebook are in the same business as the U.S. government’s National Security Agency. They collect a vast amount of information about people, store it, integrate it and use it to predict individual and group behavior, which they then sell to advertisers and others. This similarity made them natural partners for the NSA, and that’s why they were approached to…

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SimCity Clone in a Browser

3D.City

#Games

Sat, Nov 29th, 2014 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

Using three.js and sea3d.js, the 3D.City game is web-powered clone of the classic SimCity.

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NASA Announces Sending Human to Mars

#Space

Tue, Dec 2nd, 2014 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

With a tweet announcing their plan, NASA has put together a realistic timetable which would see humans on the red planet within our lifetime.

"The Obama administration is committed to a robust Mars exploration program," NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said. "With this next mission, we're ensuring America remains the world leader in the exploration of the Red Planet, while taking another significant step toward sending humans there in the 2030s."

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"It is the simplicity of Seinfeld that makes it so appropriate for use in economics courses."

#Money

Wed, Dec 3rd, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

On the Yada Yada Yada Econ website, Linda Ghent, Alan Grant and George Lesica use pop culture as a teaching material to learn and understand economics.

Seinfeld ran for nine seasons on NBC and became famous as a “show about nothing.” Basically, the show allows viewers to follow the antics of Jerry, George, Elaine, and Kramer as they move through their daily lives, often encountering interesting people or dealing with special circumstances.

It is the simplicity of Seinfeld that makes it so appropriate for use in economics courses. Using these clips (as well as clips from other television shows or movies) makes economic concepts come alive, making them more real for students. Ultimately, students will start seeing economics everywhere – in other TV shows, in popular music, and most importantly, in their own lives.

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How Speakers Work

#Music

Tue, Dec 2nd, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

The Animagraffs website has a beautiful breakdown of how a speaker works, explained in an effectively simple way.

Speakers (also called loudspeakers) push and pull surrounding air molecules in waves that the human ear interprets as sound. You could even say that hearing is movement detection. So what makes a speaker travel back and forth at just the right rate and distance, and how does that make sound?

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"Stranded in Space, but not in Time..."

Michael Shanks' Time Trap

#Video

Thu, Dec 4th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

If your spaceship makes an emergency landing in a post-apocalyptic Australia, travel through time to find the parts you need.

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"A vision of humanity's expansion into the Solar System."

Wanderers

#Space

Mon, Dec 1st, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Wanderers is a short film by Erik Wernquist which explores humanity's eventual expansion in the solar system — and possibly beyond — with this visually stunning rendition. See more here. Above, a sunset from Saturn.

Wanderers is a vision of humanity's expansion into the Solar System, based on scientific ideas and concepts of what our future in space might look like, if it ever happens. The locations depicted in the film are digital recreations of actual places in the Solar System, built from real photos and map data where available.

Without any apparent story, other than what you may fill in by yourself, the idea with the film is primarily to show a glimpse of the fantastic and beautiful nature that surrounds us on our neighboring worlds - and above all, how it might appear to…

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World's Simplest Electric Train

#Science

Fri, Dec 5th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

On the foreign YouTube channel Amazing Science, a demonstration on how to build a very simple electric train of sorts.

This “Train” is made of magnet,copper wire and a dry cell.
Please enjoy watching this simple structure electric train.

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HAM

#Music

Sun, Dec 7th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Directed by Eric Wareheim and set to Mr. Ozio's music, HAM shows the value of a good dollar-store bargain.

This is an excerpt from Rubberhead. To see the full version, go here: vimeo.com/ondemand/rubberhead

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"It's so dense."

If Star Wars: Episode VII Trailer had been made by George Lucas

#StarWars

Mon, Dec 1st, 2014 21:00 by capnasty NEWS

What would the new Star Wars: Episode VII Trailer look like had George Lucas put his hands on it? According to Late Nite Films, it probably would've been flooded with CGI. Original trailer here.

The plot is, apparently, nothing new:

Mark Hamill, AKA Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker, predicted the plot and timing of latest instalment The Force Awakens way back in 1983 – on a British morning TV show – it has been revealed.

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Walking Cardboard Animal Sculptures

Kinetic Creatures

#Products

Sat, Nov 29th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Kinetic Creatures are a series of cardboard animals you can assemble and either hand power or power with an electric motor, causing them to walk.

Kinetic Creatures are a set of three walking cardboard animal sculptures. The Creatures, Elly the Elephant, Rory the Rhino, and Geno the Giraffe, are each made up of cardboard pieces that you assemble using tabs-and-slots. By turning the wire handle, you make the creatures come alive with a simple mechanical motion.

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Fifty Shades of Hype

with test subjects

#Literature

Sun, Nov 30th, 2014 11:00 by Lisa Stager ARTICLE

Well, I finally did it. Gave in. Caved like a ubiquitous sinkhole over a Detroit sewer line.

It’s true.

I just finished reading Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James.

I held out as long as I could. I really did. Honest and truly. Swear to God and other divine entities.

When I first started hearing about the book, it was all ooh and ahh from “housewife-types” – whatever that condescending term is supposed to mean. Show me a “housewife-type” and I’ll show you someone who works harder than the average “husband-type” for little to no recognition or appreciation, let alone compensation. But that’s another rant for another day. I’m sure I started off talking about something else…

Oh yeah, the book. There were all these oohs and ahhs, proclaiming it to be basically the hottest thing since napalm. I yawned, thinking yeah, yeah, just the latest fluff-filled romance…

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