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More adventurous than the average bear

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Monday, October 10, 2016

Links - 10th October 2016

How being alone may be the key to rest - "Reading came out as the clear winner, followed by being in the natural environment, being on your own, listening to music and doing nothing in particular. What is striking is that all these are activities often done alone."

A bunch of guys had 200 packets of McDonald’s curry sauce so they cooked a pot of curry

Mystery Soda Machine – Seattle, Washington | Atlas Obscura - "A contraption out of time, Seattle's Mystery Soda Machine dispenses cans of sugary pop for just 75 cents, and while no one knows who stocks this aging landmark, the real question is what it will spit out when the "Mystery" button is pressed."
Americans create and then obsess over really interesting things. Probably because there isn't much there otherwise

Want to Raise Successful Daughters? Science Says Nag the Heck Out of Them

How Indonesia Beat Back Terrorism - "The story of the Indonesian government’s campaign against extremism, Tepperman told me, is the story of a nation “getting it right at one particular moment in time,” through luck as much as skill and improvisation as much as strategy—and often merely by taking more steps forward than back. It’s a story, in other words, of imperfect and impermanent fixes."

Malaysian student makes possible breakthrough in war on superbugs - "A 25-year-old Malaysian studying at Melbourne University has made a game-changing discovery in medicine on a possible alternative to antibiotics. Reports said that Shu Lam, who’s a PhD candidate at the Australian varsity, has developed a chain of star-shaped polymer molecules that can kill superbugs, which are bacteria resistant to antibiotics, after three-and-a-half years of research during her thesis work. The chain of star-shaped polymers, which are large molecules, can reportedly kill antibiotic-resistant bacteria without harming healthy cells."

How the Ballpoint Pen Changed Handwriting - "The ballpoint’s universal success has changed how most people experience ink. Its thicker ink was less likely to leak than that of its predecessors. For most purposes, this was a win—no more ink-stained shirts, no need for those stereotypically geeky pocket protectors. However, thicker ink also changes the physical experience of writing, not necessarily all for the better."

Is this the world's most modern family? Man who used to be a woman gives birth to a baby by woman who used to be a man - "They initially announced the news of their pregnancy online, having conceived naturally as either of them have undergone lower-body surgery"
It's amazing what you can do when you redefine words

Donald Trump Does Have Ideas—and We’d Better Pay Attention to Them - "If you listen closely to Trump, you’ll hear a direct repudiation of the system of globalization and identity politics that has defined the world order since the Cold War. There are, in fact, six specific ideas that he has either blurted out or thinly buried in his rhetoric: (1) borders matter; (2) immigration policy matters; (3) national interests, not so-called universal interests, matter; (4) entrepreneurship matters; (5) decentralization matters; (6) PC speech—without which identity politics is inconceivable—must be repudiated. These six ideas together point to an end to the unstable experiment with supra- and sub-national sovereignty that many of our elites have guided us toward, siren-like, since 1989... His ideas do not yet fully cohere. They are a bit too much like mental dust that has yet to come together. But they can come together. And Trump is the first American candidate to bring some coherence to them, however raucous his formulations have been... Trump is that quintessentially American figure, hated by intellectuals on both sides of the aisle and on the other side of the Atlantic, who doesn’t start with a “plan,” but rather gets himself in the thick of things and then moves outward to a workable idea—not a “principled” one—that can address the problem at hand, but which goes no further. That’s what American businessmen and women do. (And, if popular culture is a reliable guide to America, it is what Han Solo always does in Star Wars movies.) We would do well not to forget that the only school of philosophy developed in America has been Pragmatism. This second meaning of being an anti-ideas candidate is consonant with it."

Trudeau Government's First Months Were Least Productive In Decades - "“For a government that really talks about real change, and high ambition ... there hasn’t been much change. They haven’t done a heck of a lot,” said Conservative MP Erin O’Toole, who flagged the trend to The Huffington Post Canada. The Liberals’ “grandiose” electoral promises regarding climate change, health care, and the national security bill, C-51, have been delayed or sent off for further consultations, the Ontario MP noted. Decisions on Canada Post home delivery, defence spending, and the National Energy Board have also been put off. “We have a prime minister who is almost obsessed with constant engagement with media but very disinterested with the nitty gritty of governing,” said O’Toole, a probable Conservative leadership contender."
Less PR, more governing

Arizona child sexual abuse law guts due process for parents and caregivers. - "The Arizona Supreme Court issued a stunning and horrifying decision on Tuesday, interpreting a state law to criminalize any contact between an adult and a child’s genitals. According to the court, the law’s sweep encompasses wholly innocent conduct, such as changing a diaper or bathing a baby. As the stinging dissent notes, “parents and other caregivers” in the state are now considered to be “child molesters or sex abusers under Arizona law.” Those convicted under the statute may be imprisoned for five years."

Sichuan cuisine and the red hot secret about globalisation - "Many cuisines we think of as “traditional” are actually modern inventions. Toro sushi, a delicacy consumed by millions around the world, is another case in point. Toro – the choicest cuts from bluefin tuna – is often the most prized piece on a sushi platter. But before the invention of the refrigerator – first designed to store butter – tuna was avoided by discerning diners. By the time fishing boats returned from days-long voyages, their red-fleshed tuna were starting to go off. Japanese at the time preferred delicate white-flesh snappers and breams for their sweetness and freshness... We are what we eat, so goes the saying. People tend to think of globalisation as something that happened in our lifetime. The truth is we have been living in a globalised world for the past 500 years. Take away tomato, potato, maize, chilli, coffee and all things “foreign” from your menu; you probably would struggle to find an “authentic” local dish in your neighbourhood. From Beijing to Berlin, there is a backlash against globalisation. Revering tradition is in vogue. This is understandable but take it with a pinch of salt. Look around, everything you hold dear – the food you love, the music you enjoy or the book you read – bears the mark of globalisation. We need a better form of globalisation. But nobody can put the genie back."

Man arrested for speeding in DeLorean at 88mph - "Nigel Mills, 55, who paid £22,000 for his cult vehicle, denied that he had been attempting to break the space-time continuum in his efforts"

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch was the myth we needed to save our oceans. - "

How we frame a problem colors how we think about solving it. (Or how not to solve it: If the Great Pacific Garbage Patch really were something like a floating landfill, then we might be wise to leave it where it lies. Would it really make sense to haul that garbage back to terra firma, just so we can dump it in a different concentrated landfill?) But a shift from plastic soup to plastic smog also undermines the metaphor that made the garbage patch compelling. If it’s just another form of invisible pollution, like the stuff that leads to global warming, then the problem starts to seem blurry and intractable."
The Noble Lie is okay?

Grand Strategy 1337–1338 - Trial by Battle: The Hundred Years War - "In April 1337, as the main protagonists were exchanging declarations of war, Benedict told Philip VI plainly that the mood in Germany was one of ‘irritation approaching desperation’ and that an overt alliance between the Empire and England was likely to follow. The English King’s preferred course would have been an alliance with Flanders. The county, with its long coastline on the North Sea and along the great north European estuaries, and its open border with France, was ideally situated for his purposes. Moreover, as one of his advisers put it, Flanders was to France what Scotland was to England"

Daniel Drew - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - "Daniel Drew left a controversial legacy behind. At the zenith of his career as a financier, when his personal fortune was estimated at $13 million and he was respectfully called "Uncle Daniel" on Wall Street, he was treated with admiration. After his fortunes changed, he was vilified by newspapers, which wrote that Drew "has been one of the curses of the market for years past. If he has now received such a blow as will result in his being driven from the Street altogether, no one will be sorry for him," and "he holds the honest people of the world to be a pack of fools."

Bride-to-be fined RM25k for providing unregistered dental service - "Nurul Nadzirah admitted to offering the service, despite not having any qualification or professional training in dental medicine. She said she learned how to perform the procedure to fix the braces by watching YouTube and through friends."
Malaysia Boleh!

Italy's Supreme Court rules public masturbation not a crime - "Italy's highest court has ruled that masturbation in public is not a crime, as long as it is not conducted in the presence of minors"

SJW Historian Triggered by 'Imperialist' M&S Pie - "An empire pie is a well-established, Indian-themed variant of shepherd’s pie, which includes spices and mango chutney instead of gravy."

The lure of the disaster movie - "Audience anxieties may fuel demand for disaster pictures but film industry economics have played a role in bringing about the current glut. With Hollywood’s focus on the overseas market, studio executives are constantly looking for films that are easy to export. Disaster films neatly fit the bill – they’re visual spectacles understandable in any language"

Gawker - Timeline - "The Jungle Book is just as drenched with racism and colonialism as anything else Kipling wrote on the subject."
Comments: "Yeah fuck Kipling for not having enough trans pansexual disabled characters. It's like he was writing this shit during the height of English Imperialism or something."
"I was looking for the connection between Kipling's racism and the actual content of the Jungle Book. Missed it."
"Uh Mowgli is superior to the animals uh that's a parallel to Britain and the rest of the world, obviously."
"Why must we cast aside great works of literature that endure to this day for not inhabiting a subjective modern consciousness?"
"Yeah, lets burn his books like every other progressive society in history has dealt with problematic literature...The Nazis...The Inquisition....oh, wait...."
"Of course it can't possibly measure up to the amazing literature being produced at Gawker. One day historians will study only three things: Shakespeare, the Bible, and Gawker."

The Human Journey: 1493, How Europe's Discovery of the Americas Revolutionized Trade, Ecology and Life on Earth - "there was another New World product that helped feed the growing masses of industrial Europe, guano, the excrement of birds. For millions of years the cold sea currents along the west coast of South America had brought up nutrients from the bottom that fed vast shoals of fish. Great flocks of seabirds swooped on them and bred on islands near the coast; the Chincha islands they are called. Bare islands where no people lived, for their vast cliffs are made of pure guano."

Why they Put Potatoes on Frederick the Great’s Grave - "In addition to a militaristic bent, Frederick Wilhelm also aimed to inject a decent work ethic into Prussia. He used to wander around Berlin with a cane beating people he thought were acting lazy. He would deliver his rallying cry, “Prussia needs you– now!” along with a sharp whack to the head. Then lecture the aggrieved about how they ought to be knitting, or that young men should be marching or taking guns apart and putting them back together instead of sitting around playing cards. If a minister spent more than an hour preaching on Sunday it was considered excessive and the preacher was fined. On one occasion a peasant saw him and ran the opposite direction, so Frederick Wilhelm chased him down and asked why he had run away. When the man replied he was afraid of the king, Frederick Wilhelm shouted “You should love me!” and proceeded to beat him senseless with a cane. On top of his belief that the whole of Prussia should be in a constant state of workaholism, Frederick Wilhelm was immensely frugal to the point of selling the royal yacht and firing all of his court musicians. Sometimes, if he thought a woman was dressed too extravagantly on the street, he would rip off her clothing. For kicks he wrote a manual for literally every single civil servant in Prussia, detailing what their exact duties were. Fun guy."

screensaver - How can I prevent a policy-enforced screen lock in Windows 7? - Super User - "If Windows Media Player is still installed, you can play a video on loop and minimize it (the sample "Wildlife" videos work fine for this). By default, as long as a video is playing, the screen won't lock."
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