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May 1, 2011
[docu] The Teaser Trailer for a documentary about Alan Turing


May 2, 2011
[obl] Osama bin Laden: It Took Years To Find Him But Just Minutes To Kill Him‘The trail that led the CIA to Osama bin Laden began with his most trusted courier. It had taken the CIA years to discover first his name and then the home where he was hiding the al-Qaida leader. But it took only 40 minutes on Sunday for US special forces to kill both the courier and Bin Laden.’
May 4, 2011
[life] Suburban woman is sued after elaborate online hoax‘Every decade or so I get a taste to pose as a man (and up to 20 other people simultaneously) and reel me in some juicy middle-aged woman flesh…’
May 5, 2011
[ObL] For 10 Years, Osama bin Laden Filled A Gap Left By The Soviet Union. Who Will Be The Baddie Now? … Adam Curtis On The Death Of ObL … ‘With Bin Laden’s death maybe the spell is broken. It does feel that we are at the end of a way of looking at the world that makes no real sense any longer. But the big question is where will the next story come from? And who will be the next baddie?’ [via Feeling Listless]
May 6, 2011
[comics] How 2000AD artist and MS sufferer John Hicklenton chose to end his life

…he decided to finish the battle on his own terms. Even when we went to Dignitas,” Lavis recalls, “it was, ‘I’m pulling the pin on the hand grenade. I’m murdering MS. It’s not murdering me.’”

May 7, 2011
[blog] I Curate The Internet … brilliantly done image Tumblr. Do check out the archives. (Some NSFW content)
May 8, 2011
[nyc] The Terminal: The Roughest Bar In New York City … a brief and fascinating look with video … ‘I used to poke my head into the Terminal back in the late 70s. Its notoriety drew artists and punks and the curious. But, it wasn’t welcoming to slumming hipsters or bush league Bukowskis. It was an enclosed society with it’s own brutal code, not easily cracked by the voyeuristic aesthete.’
May 9, 2011
[email] Legal Disclaimers: Spare Us The E-mail Yada-Yada … Legal disclaimers at the bottom of e-mail’s are useless … ‘They are assumed to be a wise precaution. But they are mostly, legally speaking, pointless. Lawyers and experts on internet policy say no court case has ever turned on the presence or absence of such an automatic e-mail footer in America, the most litigious of rich countries. Many disclaimers are, in effect, seeking to impose a contractual obligation unilaterally, and thus are probably unenforceable.’
[funny] The Super-injuncted Crossword Puzzle‘6 Across – Shagged his wife’s sister’s former best friend whilst still married to her.’
May 10, 2011
[docu] Have computers taken away our power? … Adam Curtis on his new documetary series “All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace” …

The central idea [of All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace] leads Curtis on a journey, taking in the chilling über-individualist novelist Ayn Rand, former chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan, the “new economy”, hippy communes, Silicon Valley, ecology, Richard Dawkins, the wars in Congo, the lonely suicide in a London squat of the mathematical genius who invented the selfish gene theory, and the computer model of the eating habits of the pronghorn antelope.

You can see why Zoe Williams once wrote that, while watching one of Curtis’s programmes, “I kept thinking the dog was sitting on the remote.”

[comics] Howard Chaykin, Time and Time Again … Douglas Wolk On Howard Chaykin‘Chaykin’s ’80s comics are the work of an artist pushing himself savagely hard–especially Time2, an ambitious, densely packed 1986-1987 project that encompassed a one-shot comic book and a pair of slim graphic novels before vanishing.’
May 11, 2011
[tv] Adam Curtis – All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace … promotional trail for Adam Curtis’ latest documentary … ‘WE DREAMED THE SYSTEMS COULD STABILISE THEMSELVES THROUGH FEEDBACK.’
May 12, 2011
[tv] The Most Stupid Quiz Answer Ever?‘Andrew and Vanessa – the contestants in question – had been doing so well in the Channel 4 game show. But then came the fateful Bannister question. In 1954, did he go into space, run a sub-four minute mile or become the first man ever to put the toilet seat down? Andrew and Vanessa ummed. They ahhed. Then, out of nowhere, Andrew had a breakthrough. Eyes burning with pure knowledge, he shouted “I think I’ve seen ‘Bannister’ written on a toilet!” Vanessa was more cautious, wailing “Who KNOWS this?” before eventually agreeing on the toilet thing as well.’
May 13, 2011
[movies] 2001 VHS Tape Monolith … an 8ft tall sculpture by David Herbert

2001 VHS Tape Monolith

May 14, 2011
[books] Balancing The Books … Ed Stourton’s Book Storage Crisis … ‘Our dilemma is a middle-aged one but I suspect, on the basis of conversations with like-minded friends, a common one. Our books are taking over our house and, it sometimes seems, our lives…’ [via Feeling Listless]
May 15, 2011
[weird] Plague of US preachers falsely claim to be Navy SEALs‘Other common professions who tend to falsely and publicly claim they were once SEALs are politicians and sheriffs, according to Shipley. Sheriffs are typically elected in the USA, and so need popular support. These and clergymen are the kind of people he tends to out, rather than the more common type of commando-impersonator who is simply trying to impress a girl in a bar. “The pastor never thought anyone outside of his small community would see [his false claims],” Shipley said. “He doesn’t understand how the Internet works.” In America is actually a crime to misrepresent or exaggerate one’s military service record.’
May 16, 2011
[people] Five Reasons To Be Concerned Your Husband Is A Psychopath … from Jon Ronson‘In my book “The Psychopath Test,” I meet an enormously wealthy former Fortune 500-type CEO, Al Dunlap, to ask him which of the 20 Hare psychopathic traits he felt most applied to him. He instantly confessed to Grandiose Sense of Self Worth, which would have been a hard one for him to deny as he was at the time standing underneath a giant oil painting of himself.’
May 17, 2011
[tech] The Art of Endless Upgrades … Kevin Kelly on an issue I’ve noticed too – I spend far to much time maintaining a few simple websites … ‘Keeping a website or a software program afloat is like keep a yacht afloat. It is a black hole for attention. I can kind of understand why a mechanical device would break down after a while — moisture rusts metal, or the air oxidizes membranes, or lubricants evaporate — all of which require repair. But I wasn’t thinking that the intangible world of bits would also degrade. What’s to break? Apparently everything.’
May 18, 2011
[space] The Blue Marble Shot … a look back at the first complete photo of a whole round Earth taken from space which might be the most reproduced photo ever … ‘You can’t see the Earth as a globe unless you get at least twenty thousand miles away from it, and only 24 humans ever went that far into outer space. They were the three-man crews of the nine Apollo missions that traveled to the moon between 1968 and 1972, six of which landed there successfully (three men went twice). But only the last three saw a full Earth.’
May 19, 2011
[horoscopes] Horoscoped … the most common words in star sign predictions from Information is Beautiful

Horoscoped by David McCandless

May 20, 2011
[movies] The Monkees’ Head: ‘Our fans couldn’t even see it’ … The Monkees discuss their disastrous movie Head … ‘In retrospect, the marketing seems suicidal. Posters featured the balding head of the media theorist John Brockman and the slogan: “What is Head all about? Only John Brockman’s shrink knows for sure!” The so-called Monkees movie made no mention of the Monkees.’
May 23, 2011
[facebook] FaceFacts … Jason Scott on Facebook … ‘[Facebook] is like an ever-burning fire of our memories, gleefully growing as we toss endless amounts of information and self and knowledge into it, only to have it added to columns of advertiser-related facts we do not see and do not control and do not understand.’
May 24, 2011
[tv] Grace Dent On Adam Curtis’ All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace‘And look at me, I’m so happy. Twitter alone has given me retinal migraine issues, RSI and cajoled me into believing I am a free-thinking revolutionary fanning flames of liberty in Iran, Libya and Syria, when in fact I’m just a woman in pyjamas, hugging an Intel Pentium processor, waiting for Ocado to fetch more olives. Up the revolution … oooh, have these got pimentos in them? Yum, yum, slurp.’
[comics] The AV Club Interviews Chester Brown

AV Club: Is there some reason so many cartoonists have such idiosyncratic political and social views? Peter Bagge is a libertarian as well, and Steve Ditko is an objectivist, and R. Crumb has his odd open marriage, and then there’s whatever Dave Sim’s got going on.

Chester Brown: [Laughs.]

May 25, 2011
[facebook] Bradley Manning’s Facebook Page … I can’t help myself but be fascinated by this archive of Bradley Manning’s Facebook Wall … ‘Manning’s Facebook postings are a vivid, if partial, portrait of his life in the military and of the political and social issues that he followed closely. They reflect his commitment to gay rights and defiance of the military’s ban on openly gay or lesbian soldiers. They track the anguish in his personal life. And they conclude with an entry, put up in Manning’s name by his aunt, explaining his arrest with a link to a WikiLeaks website.’
[cartoons] Steve Bell On 30 Years Of Political Cartooning At The Guardian‘Nick Clegg, a rather poor clone of Cameron, who in turn is a tribute act to Blair, who is himself channelling Thatcher. And who was she channelling? Her father, Alderman Roberts, the grocer of Grantham town? Winston Churchill? Adolf Hitler? Beelzebub? Who can say?’
May 27, 2011
[life] 9-eyes … A collection of captured moments from Google Streetview.
[dailyfail] Go Look: Pictures From The Daily Mail … a weird bunch of photos collected from the Daily Mail’s website (or as I prefer to call it now – 4chan for Middle England.)
May 28, 2011
[books] Go Look: Three Len Deighton Book Covers designed by Raymond Hawkey. [thanks Phil]
May 29, 2011
[docu] Adam Curtis: The Rise of the Machines … Andrew Orlowski interviews Adam Curtis … ‘I’ve always wanted to make a film about managerialism. It’s impossible, because with managers nothing really happens. What I’m dealing with here is the ideology behind managerialism. Behind all this, behind the flipchart, is the idea that you’re nodes in a system, and ‘our job’ is to keep things stable.’
May 30, 2011
[crime] The Lazarus File … fascinating look at the investigation into a murder in Los Angeles from 1986 which has recently been reopened … ‘The detectives went back over the whole investigation—but this time with the assumption that they were looking for a female suspect. When they finished going through the case file, they had a list of five names, among them that of Stephanie Lazarus, who was cited in the original police work as John Ruetten’s ex-girlfriend, with the further notation “P.O.” Nuttall didn’t make anything of the initials until he called Ruetten, who told him that Lazarus had been a Los Angeles police officer.’
May 31, 2011
[books] The Cover To J. G. Ballard’s Crash Reconfigured [via LimbicNutrition Shorts] …

The Cover To J. G. Ballard's Crash Reconfigured

[flight] What Happened to Air France Flight 447? … a report from the NYT from before the missing flight’s black box recorder was analysed ‘On the Alucia this spring, as Woods Hole scientists scanned the first photos of Flight 447, they saw more than just landing gear, engines and wings. They also saw the bodies of at least 50 passengers sprawled across an abyssal plain at the base of the mountains. As they continued searching the area, they found a section of damaged fuselage not far away, large enough to contain more passengers. Members of the crew told me that a grim silence descended on the ship…’