linkmachinego.com
November 26, 2021
November 25, 2021
[socialmedia] I Made the World’s Blandest Facebook Profile, Just to See What Happens … A look at the toxicity of Facebook. ‘After just two weeks on the platform, consuming only content that Facebook’s recommendation systems selected for me, I found myself at the bottom of a rabbit hole not of extremism but of utter trash—bad advice, stolen memes, shady businesses, and sophomoric jokes repeated over and over. Facebook isn’t just dangerous, I learned. It doesn’t merely have the ability to shape offline reality for its billions of users. No, Facebook is also—and perhaps for most people—senseless and demoralizing.’
November 24, 2021
[life] The Misconception About Baby Boomers and the Sixties‘The boomers get tied to the sixties because they are assumed to have created a culture of liberal permissiveness, and because they were utopians—political idealists, social activists, counterculturalists. In fact, it is almost impossible to name a single person born after 1945 who played any kind of role in the civil-rights movement, Students for a Democratic Society, the New Left, the antiwar movement, or the Black Panthers during the nineteen-sixties. Those movements were all started by older, usually much older, people. The baby boomers obviously played no substantive role in the passage of the Civil Rights Act or the Voting Rights Act, or in the decisions of the Warren Court, which are the most important political accomplishments of the decade. Nor were they responsible for the women’s movement or gay liberation.’ [Thanks Feeling Listless]
November 23, 2021
[movies] Dune / Terry and June Mashup …

Dune / Terry and June Mashup

November 22, 2021
[books] Why Stephen King keeps coming back … A look at the longevity of Stephen King. ‘Even though I’ve been thinking about him and reading him for years, it wasn’t until a couple weeks ago, reading the 2003 foreword to The Drawing of the Three, the second book in his Dark Tower fantasy epic, that I think I finally got Stephen King. There, King writes about what led him to create the series, which at that point was five books in, and would rapidly conclude with two more a year later. He’s trying to figure out why he wanted to write these books. He chalks it up to the American in him: the urge to “build the tallest, dig the deepest, write the longest.” This, I think, is King’s lasting influence, and why generation after generation comes back to him. It’s his Americanness — not the lived reality of America, which many have claimed is what perennially draws people to his work, but its fiction, made flesh.’
November 19, 2021
[people] What lies beneath: the secrets of France’s top serial killer expert … The fascinating story of a fraudulent French expert on serial killers. ‘Bourgoin’s friends withdrew from him, and began to await, with a fair amount of dread, his unmasking. But his star continued to rise. “What astounded me was not so much that he told tall tales, because I knew he was that way, but rather that everyone swallowed them whole,” the other friend said. “It was the unseriousness, not to say the sheer idiocy, of the media.” The indulgence of the publishers, the newspapers, the television stations and even the police might have been more forgivable if Bourgoin’s work had been more insightful, offered more than morbid titillation, the first friend said. “But there was never, ever, ever the slightest beginning of a hint of a shadow of analysis, of reflection,” he said.’
November 18, 2021
[tv] The Real C.E.O. of “Succession” … Profiling Jesse Armstrong and Succession. ‘At first glance, it might seem surprising that “Succession”—a show saturated in knowing detail about Manhattan, even if it is concerned with a global corporate business—was conceived by a British showrunner and is the product of a writers’ room in London. The Roys, though, have British roots: Logan is from a working-class Scottish background, and the mother of the younger Roy children, Caroline, is a frosty English aristocrat. Armstrong told me that in considering Caroline’s class background he had in mind someone like Lady Caroline Blackwood, the author and the daughter of the Marquess of Dufferin and Ava, who was married to both Robert Lowell and Lucian Freud. The barb-trading discourse of the family, and also its aversion to the expression of emotion, are recognizable as culturally inherited traits. When Kendall visits his mother and tries to confide in her late one night, she recommends that they wait until morning, so they can talk “over an egg,” then scarpers before he rises.’
November 17, 2021
[comics] Jack Kirby Runs Into the MCU Buzzsaw … A look at how the The Marvel Cinematic Universe (and it’s fans) deals with the Eternals and it’s creator Jack Kirby. ‘There’s something deeply depressing about the whole spectacle that has nothing to do with art. Jack Kirby spent his life fighting corporate behemoths and championing the rights of creators, as individuals, a war he didn’t win until after his death. But time and again, the fans have made it abundantly clear they care more about corporations than creators.’
November 16, 2021
[funny] Zizek / Spice Girls Mashed Up… via Twitter

November 15, 2021
[ronson] Jon Ronson and Adam Curtis on the culture wars: ‘How has this happened? Where is the escape hatch?’ … Curtis and Ronson in discussion promoting Ronson’s new podcast. ‘The series did make me think: how has this happened? Not just the culture wars but their ferocity. And where is the escape hatch? Because I think all sides now feel that there’s something not quite right. If you examine the years since Trump and Brexit, there has been this enormous hysteria in newspapers and on television about it. But actually the politicians have done nothing to change society. It’s almost been like a frozen world.’
November 12, 2021
[moore] ‘There is nothing in celebrity that I want’ … Recent interview with Alan Moore focusing on Northampton. ‘“You have to understand,” he says “that I have a probably psychotic belief that I am the town of Northampton. This has been ever since I noticed that Richard the Lionheart granted the town its charter on November 18, my birthday. So I am the town of Northampton, its living embodiment.”’
November 11, 2021
[comics] A rare interview with Robert Crumb on America, PC culture and Trump‘It was Aline who hung, at the entrance to their home, a Donald Trump voodoo doll, complete with pins. “She’s really obsessed with Trump,” he says. “I’m no friend of Trump. I think he’s a bad man, but he’s a symptom of things that have been happening in the States for decades, it’s the decline of the Roman Empire. She suggested we make a comic about Trump together. I said, Okay, I can get into that, and then I spent an entire day just drawing Trump’s hair. I studied his hair with a magnifying glass. When you see a man with hair like that, alarms should go off.”’
November 10, 2021
[comics] Why Bruce Wayne Should Never Give Any Money To Charity‘Amongst Batman’s wider enemies are therapists, teachers, postal workers, and ventriloquists. If you support the arts: you’re probably funding an origin story. If you support public services: origin story. There’s no industry which won’t pivot into a villain production line. One time a policeman got shot and was reborn as an immortal Avenging Wrath of the Murdered Dead. Every single person in Gotham City is one bad day away from turning into a criminal, and Bruce Wayne’s best bet is to hoard all his money and make sure that nobody else gets their hands on it.’
November 9, 2021
[books] On the Trail of a Mysterious, Pseudonymous Author … The fascinating story of a piecemeal novel sent in the post by an unknown author. ‘Why not get it published? Why send it to a seemingly random and relatively small group of recipients? (Prickett has sent copies to five or six hundred people.) “The worst thing about writing,” he told me, “is how long you spend working on something before you get to show it to people. It’s a very lonely way to work. You spend three or four years on a book and then it takes months to find an agent, months for the agent to find a publisher, and then it’s another year or more before the book comes out . . . The literary industry is just not much fun.”’
November 8, 2021
[space] Unwrapped: Five Decade Old Lunar Selfie … A 1969 selfie of Neil Armstrong captured from the reflection in Buzz Aldrin’s helmet. ‘ The original image captured not only the magnificent desolation of an unfamiliar world, but Armstrong himself reflected in Aldrin’s curved visor. Enter modern digital technology. In the featured image, the spherical distortion from Aldrin’s helmet has been reversed. The result is the famous picture — but now featuring Armstrong himself from Aldrin’s perspective.’

Neil Armstrong Lunar Selfie

November 5, 2021
[funny] Gunpowder plotte was ye false flagge, says 17th century conspiracy theorist‘A 17th-century conspiracy theorist is convinced the gunpowder plot was a government scheme to justify taking people’s gunpowder away, as it is impossible for mere powder to undo stone and stout oak beams. Simon Williams, esq, Gentleman of the parish of Kettering, has written a hard-hitting pamphlet pointing out that it is not credible that a small group of religious fundamentalists could smuggle thirty-six barrels of gunpowder into Parliament without the government being complicit in some way…’
November 4, 2021
[art] Jacksonpollock.org … Waste some time creating your own Jackson Pollock painting within your web browser.
November 3, 2021
>> The 100 greatest TV series of the 21st Century‘It felt like the right time to survey the television landscape because arguably it has been the defining art form of the past 21 years: where once, rightly or wrongly, it was largely patronised as cinema’s younger, more rough-and-ready sibling, today its artistic credibility is unassailable, while the advent of streaming platforms has also given shows the ability to reach unprecedented global audiences all at once. And so, in order to mark TV’s ascendancy, we have decided to ask the question: what are the greatest TV series of the 21st Century?’
November 2, 2021
[apple] A Prototype Original iPod … A very yellow testing prototype of the original iPod. ‘Clearly, this revision of the prototype was very close to the internals of the finished iPod. In fact, the date there — September 3rd, 2001 — tells us this one was made barely two months before it was introduced…’
November 1, 2021
October 28, 2021
[books] How to Get Your Mind Blown by H.P. Lovecraft and Alan Moore in 7 Epic Steps‘If you get this far and you still haven’t had enough, go even deeper down the rabbit hole. (This is where I’m currently at) Read S.T. Joshi’s biography of Lovecraft, I Am Providence. It’s over 1600 pages long. It’s IN-DEPTH. Realize that you didn’t actually know anything about the life and works of Lovecraft. Read each Lovecraft story again as you go through the biography and now you will understand the context of each story as you fully digest them. Then read the Moore books again. Get lost in the abyss. It was never a rabbit hole, it was a portal through time and space where your mind and reality melt and warp.’
October 22, 2021
[london] The unsolved mystery of the Putney Pusher … A look at why a random crime seen on CCTV in 2017 remains unsolved. ‘The woman’s fall was no accident. The bus’s dashboard footage revealed, frame by frame, what had happened. A jogger can be seen running in the opposite direction. Though his face is obscured, there’s a decent enough outline to work with: he’s a stocky white male, with short brown hair and brown eyes – wearing dark blue shorts and a grey t-shirt. As he runs towards the woman, he seems to make a decision. In one stride, he’s next to her, arms outstretched. After shoving her into the path of the bus, he carries on running without a backwards glance.’
October 21, 2021
[quacks] James Morrison: The Doctor Who Made His Patients Poop Themselves To Death‘The doctor, you’ll be shocked to learn, wasn’t too fussed about figuring out things like dosage, and here’s where things got dangerous. As far as he was concerned, if you fancied ramming down dozens of the laxatives that was fine. He even recommended that you take laxatives for the diarrhea, “so as effectually to carry off the morbid humours”, as well as dysentery. Needless to say, but this is like someone trying to treat your ball pain with successive blows to the testicles. He advised that you were likely to feel worse before you get better, and to not let that stop you from taking his extremely profitable medicine. Of course, the pills began to kill people, including one 15-year-old girl who died “in horrible distress” as a consequence of taking his medicine, as well as a little apprentice boy, among others.’
October 20, 2021
[internet] The ‘Dead-Internet Theory’ Is Wrong but Feels True … An odd conspiracy theory that claims that most of the content on the internet is posted by Bots. ‘Anyway … dead-internet theory is pretty far out-there. But unlike the internet’s many other conspiracy theorists, who are boring or really gullible or motivated by odd politics, the dead-internet people kind of have a point. In the New York story that IlluminatiPirate invokes, the writer Max Read plays with paranoia. “Everything that once seemed definitively and unquestionably real now seems slightly fake,” he writes. But he makes a solid argument: He notes that a majority of web traffic probably comes from bots, and that YouTube, for a time, had such high bot traffic that some employees feared “the Inversion” — the point when its systems would start to see bots as authentic and humans as inauthentic.’
October 19, 2021
October 18, 2021
[web] What useful unknown website do you wish more people knew about? … Another great list of websites from AskReddit. JustWatch.com – Ever had a movie or TV show in mind and you wanted to know where to stream it online? Want to know if you can stream free with ads, with a subscription, or rent/buy it at a glance? Search a title and immediately know where to go to legally watch anything. Every boutique streaming service is accounted for. If it’s not listed here, start looking for physical media.’
October 15, 2021
>> I don’t know who needs this today but here’s a YouTube of Paul Giamatti yelling. You’re welcome.

October 14, 2021
[comics] “Are You Glad You Did It?”: An Interview with Douglas Wolk …An interview with Douglas Wolk on his quest to read every Marvel comic and the book he wrote about it. ‘There were also a few unexpected “wow” moments. [J.M.] DeMatteis and Liam Sharp did a Man-Thing series in 1998 that’s never been reprinted and it’s freaking gorgeous. How did I not know about this? And honestly, going back and reading Master of Kung Fu. There were a few weekends I spent reading that series and thinking, “This is so gooood. This is so problematic. This is so good.”’
October 6, 2021
[comics] Ditko Con 2021 … The Comics Journal visits a fan convention celebrating Steve Ditko. ‘Javier Hernandez recommended everyone read Ditko’s later works and also ran into memorable fans at his table, including a couple from the local Rusyn Byzantine Catholic group. He reported that they felt Steve Ditko likely based his illustrated Spider-Man and Doctor Strange hands after one of the Saints in the Byzantine Catholic religion. After some research, it became apparent to me that the paintings of St. Nicholas’ right hand follow this same very distinct pattern.’
October 5, 2021
[movies] Superman III, and childhood nightmares … A look-back at the movie Superman III. ‘But right throughout Superman III, I found myself more uneasy around the character of Vera than the de facto villain of the piece, Ross. No slight on the hugely entertaining Robert Vaughn there, rather I just think Annie Ross is really quite brilliant. There’s an argument I strongly subscribe to that if you want to get under someone’s skin, then a human in a suit tends to make a far more compelling monster than even the most wonderfully-created purely-CG effect.’