Saturday, October 30, 2010

Deathstar Reconstruction Paper

The original Star Wars trilogy in paper cutout format, set to the lovely song "Tatooine" by Jeremy Messersmith. (nice find, Wil Wheaton)

More Zombie Than Zombie

MakeMeZombie takes any face and zombifies it. Got an cute baby picture? Change it from "Awwwww!" to "Eeewwwwww!"

The ever-adorable 70s TV sweetheart Mary Tyler Moore goes from adorable to abhor-able.

And this zombification really puts the "ugh!" back in Hugh Grant.

Of course this process fairly cries out for a zombification of musician and filmmaker Rob Zombie...

I did a pic of myself, but for some reason the before and after photos looked identical, so I am just posting one and will let the reader guess whether it is the "Before" or "After" shot. (via The Presurfer)

Handmade precipitation

Perpetuum Jazzile creates a hand-generated rainstorm. Turn up the speakers and just try to stay dry... The first 2:00 is the really amazing part if you ask me; the rest of the performance is a pretty standard (though very well done) a capella rendition of Toto's "Africa".

Friday, October 29, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

What Could Possibly Go Wrong? (episode #367 in a continuing series)

Protip: When deciding where to store your town's irreplaceable historical artifacts, choosing a building made from 65 tons of coal may not be your wisest option.

Put on your dancing gloves

Really, it's little finds like this that give me joy. Hand dancing extraordinaire with "We No Speak Americano" - Cleary & Harding

Friday, October 22, 2010

It was better before before they voted for Whatshisname

Interesting page on placeholder names, the words that can refer to objects or people whose names are either temporarily forgotten, irrelevant, or unknown in the context in which it is being discussed. "Whatchamacallit" (for objects) and "Whatshisname" or "Whatshername" (for men and women, respectively) are defining examples.

In the U.S. we often use the names John Doe and Jane Doe to refer to an unknown male or female, and John Q. Public to refer to any generic citizen. Other North American names include Joe Sixpack and Joe Schmoe (used in a somewhat derogatory sense).

Naturally, other countries use different names to the same effect, and I found it a fascinating list. For example, how about these?
  • United Kingdom Joe (or Fred) Bloggs
  • Malta Joe Borg
  • South Africa Koos van der Merwe or Piet Pompies
  • Sweden actually uses "Name Name" as a placeholder
Of course, there are also placeholders for places. Podunk, Timbuktoo and Anytown, USA are but a few examples, as is Waikikamukau (pronounced ‘Why kick a moo-cow’) in New Zealand.

Even times and dates can have placeholders, such as Juvember (an indeterminate month) or "Oh-dark-hundred" (some unreasonably early hour) and perhaps my favorite "(God's)-Ass-o'Clock," a nonexistent time that refers to the wee hours of very early morning. The word "God" may be omitted depending upon user's preference.

Speaking of "John Doe", one of the founding members of the long-lived Los Angeles punk band X is named... John Doe.

Here they are in 2008 playing their 1983 classic "The New World": John Doe, Exene Cervenka, Billy Zoom, D.J. Bonebrake, better known as X.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


To get you in the Halloween spirit, picture this: you, various weaponry, a countryside full of brain-hungry zombies and your car, which is somewhat inconveniently located beyond the aforementioned cerebellum snackers. Play Undead Highway, just one of a LOT of zombie-based games at

Saturday, October 16, 2010

It's a badass effin' fractal

Benoit Mandelbrot, genius mathematician and the man who coined the term "fractal" and after whom the Mandelbrot Set is named, dead at 85.

A Mandelbrot Set is an extremely complex construct created by using a simple mathematical formula, and its most salient feature is that it shows more intricate detail the closer one looks or magnifies the image.

Here is a great video showing a typical "Mandelbrot Zoom".

And with perhaps the greatest (and probably only) song about this topic, may I humbly introduce you to the genius of Jonathan Coulton's "Mandelbrot Set" and the wonderful images someone put to the music...

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

!taert ro kcirT

Possibly the most brilliant Halloween gimmick ever: Reverse Halloween. I must try this...

Monday, October 11, 2010

Nonstop Animation

Gorgeous, insanely creative stop animation shorts utilizing everyday objects ranging from candy corn to Rubik's Cubes to Christmas tree ornaments from PES (Adam Pesapane). Huge hat tip to my son Sam (age 9) who clued me in. PES has done several TV commercials, including one I recognized for CoinStar, among others.

The YouTube PES Channel has even more, including his award-winning debut, "Roof Sex" (possibly NSFW, assuming two chairs having raucous sex on a city rooftop is NSFW).

Western Spaghetti

Game Over


Commercial for Orange Telecom, Europe

Sunday, October 10, 2010

The All Ten Post

Happy 10/10/10, everybody! Some Ten-related items for you on this momentous day.

Powers of Ten - a classic!

Everything you could ever want to know about the U.S. dime (worth 10 cents, of course) is comprised of 91.67 percent copper and 8.33 percent nickel (before 1965, the dime was made out of silver). It also has a edge with 118 reeds, or ridges.

Decimation is generally used today to refer to utter destruction. Some of us trivia-hounds might even know it was a form of military discipline used by officers in the Roman Army to punish mutinous or cowardly soldiers, where every tenth man in the unit would be singled out for execution by his nine comrades, usually by stoning or clubbing. Surprisingly, it has even been employed in modern times as recently as World War I and World War II by Italian and Russian armies.

BTW, in full honesty, I woke up late and missed my golden opportunity to enter this at ten minutes after ten, but through the magic of, one can cover one's ass and change the time of the post to whatever one wants, so...

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Here Be Bloggin'

Webcomic xkcd has a really funny and detailed Map of Online Communities that is making the rounds this week. Click to see the whole thing in all its pseudogeographic glory. (via kottke)

Actually, the the xkcd map is called the Updated Map of Online Communities, and through sheer serendipity I happened to stumble across what appears to be the original map, dated Spring 2007. You can tell it's ancient because there's actually a Second Life country on there that's bigger than, say, a smallish Micronesian island. The original Map of Online Communities, Spring 2007.

Monday, October 04, 2010

Wiff-waff, anyone?

The game of table tennis became popular as entertainment for the upper classes in England in the 1880s. Cigar box lids were sometimes used as paddles, as were pieces of parchment stretched over a frame, and the sound generated in play gave the game its first nicknames of "wiff-waff" and "Ping-pong". (source: Wikipedia)

A couple of cell phone commercials from Nokia featuring, ahem, "Bruce Lee" playing ping-pong and performing other amazing stunts with a nunchuck.

Matrix Ping-Pong

J.O. Waldner and J. Persson play one of the best points ever. In case you're wondering, this is an exhibition match, so it's more about the entertainment value than scoring the point. There are 3 more parts if available if you're up for it...

Did anyone else have a Gnip-Gnop game back in the day? They still make this, by the way... the kids got one for Christmas a few years ago.

Friday, October 01, 2010

We have the coldest posts in town!

A wonderful infographic of the many, many varieties of beer. Me, I've got some suds in the fridge from Founders, a local (Grand Rapids, MI) brewery: a six of their Red's Rye-PA, which would be an India Pale Ale that's brewed with rye, and a couple bottles left of their Scotch Ale called Dirty Bastard. Stop on by this weekend and we'll tip a few. (via Dark Roasted Blend)

Nine people died in a London beer flood in 1814.

A quick video of some guys who built a beer pong table with 2400 beer caps. Oh, and did I mention it has a built-in an automatic ball washer? 'Cause it has a built-in an automatic ball washer.

By the way, for those who didn't go/haven't yet gone to college, or who did go and actually spent your free time wisely doing that "studying" thing, beer pong = this. has harnessed their thousands of raters to compile a list of The Worst Beers In The World. I was amused to see that my dad's beer of choice was outranked by, among many other illustrious brands, generic beer. Wait, do they even make generic beer anymore??

Name That Beer Label
Take the Name That Beer Label Quiz.