Thursday, October 01, 2015

Rats saving lives? Nahhh.... ?

Hero rats, as they are called, are trained over months, and sniff out landmines safely, reliably, and much faster than human operators.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, October 01, 2015   1 comments links to this post

Monday, September 28, 2015

About being contrarian

It was quite some years ago, but I was an adult and had already been a spiritual seeker, a thinker, and a keen student of philosophies, life and beyond for many years.

I was in conversation with the girlfriend of a friend. I forget what we were talking about, but I said something like "nah, I don't want that, it's too popular".

She looked up at me with her clear blue eyes and a smile and said: "but isn't that still letting others decide what you do?"

Ouch! That got to me. Here was this young little apple-cheeked chit of a girl barely out of her teens, and she was teaching me a basic life lesson I should have learned long ago!

If you are making a choice mainly to be different from others, you are still letting the others make the decisions for you.

I suspect that many highly successful, mature, intelligent people are still in this trap without realizing it. If a book is very popular, they can't possibly be seen reading it. If a viewpoint is normal, it's obviously not for them. Et cetera.

This is not deciding, it is reacting.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Monday, September 28, 2015   6 comments links to this post

The Lollipop

A little eye candy for the gals.
I'm sure he trains, but he does not have the typical unnatural bulgy bodybuilder body.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Monday, September 28, 2015   3 comments links to this post

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Cheap comics for a good cause

Do you like to get interesting comics for a great price?
Do you like to support a good cause (how about free speech?)?
Here you can do both: The Humble Bundle comics collection. You decide what you pay, and the  profits go to Comics Legal Defence Fund, which I have supported more than once before, which helps authors and publishers who are being prosecuted for selling "indecent" comics.

Recommended. Warmly. It is a solid adult-comics bundle (high-quality ebooks, choice of several file formats), and it includes such comics events as Alan Moore's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen vol. 3! (Much different from the movie.) And Bone vol. 1. Both first-class comics for adults.

(Oh, by the way, before you press the Pay button, make sure your email address is written in just above. It won't work otherwise, and they don't make that very clear.)

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Saturday, September 26, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

"Crazy with a capital Cray"

Mike Johnston rings the right bell with this article.

"...So he was prosecuted for sexually exploiting a minor.
"Who was the minor? Himself. They were nude pictures of himself. Selfies, as we aging-out hipsters say now.
"Mind you, this teenager did not post said pictures on the Internet. They were not available for public viewing. They were just on his own phone, apparently kept private as a personal matter between himself and his girlfriend, who is the same age and also shows up in several shots...and who was also prosecuted for exploiting her minor self."

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Wednesday, September 23, 2015   2 comments links to this post

Friday, September 18, 2015

I'm gonna whip...

[Warning: mild profanity. So mild it may offend.]

I've not been able to imbed movies on Blogger (apart from YouPoop and Vimeo), so here is a link. A classic blues/folk song. Quite funny.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Friday, September 18, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Friday, September 11, 2015

Ray Jessel... nobody saw this coming

(Don't watch this if you are offended by any mentioned of privates, even in latin terms.)


posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Friday, September 11, 2015   1 comments links to this post

Sunday, September 06, 2015

Hail Phoebe (video update)

Phoebe Cates (screenshot from Fast Times At Ridgemont High). The most underused film beauty from the eighties?

Update: Russ said:
How can we forget the iconic slow-mo swimming pool fantasy scene

Iconic is the word! Best bikini scene ever. She's a goddess.

(I did not even look for this scene because I thought NoBoobs would have deleted it in a New York Second. But clearly there's a world of difference between topless and nude, even if the nude only shows pubic hair. Odd world.)
 (By the way, in the scene when she enters the bathroom, Judge Reinholt (Brad) was faking his self-'abuse' with a big realistic dildo. Phoebe shot backwards out of the bathroom like a startled cat!)

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Sunday, September 06, 2015   7 comments links to this post

Monday, August 31, 2015

Not a "better mousetrap"

[Thanks to TOP]

Ralp Waldo Emerson did not actually say any thing about "a better mousetrap". It was a perversion of what he did say, and which I find has much broader relevance:

"If a man has good corn or wood, or boards, or pigs, to sell, or can make better chairs or knives, crucibles or church organs, than anybody else, you will find a broad hard-beaten road to his house, though it be in the woods." —Ralph Waldo Emerson,

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Monday, August 31, 2015   1 comments links to this post

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Tiffany Aching closes Terry Pratchett's career.

Terry Pratchett, alas, is dead.

I was not surprised when I saw that Terry Pratchett's last novel, published post-mortem this week, is currently the number One bestseller.
I am glad it is a Tiffany Aching book that he managed to get out, she is my favorite witch, and the witches may well be my favorite characters of his. Tiffany is righteous, and smart, and strong. (The cranky eldest witch, Granny Weatherwax, actually takes off her hat to Tiffany at one point, something  which I'm not sure ever happened before.)

I would say "get it!", except I would recommend reading her books (five) in sequence, starting with the wee free men. The books start with her being around six, and in her late teens in the last one. So seen as a whole, you might say it's a big growing-up, or coming-of-age story. In an usual way, since it's less about boys and more about power and magic and responsibility and how can you fight an invisible, intangible enemy...

I'm not generally a fantasy reader. Most fantasy seems stuck in about twelve of the same ideas all the time, most Tolkien-related. There's only so many times you can read about orphans' destiny and magic swords. But: Terry Pratchett's book are not like that, not by a long shot. His books can be about anything, including suddenly a time travel story or whatever. But they always holds together.
They have great characters, and they are FUNNY.

Update: Anonymous
 Anonymous said...
That cover really blows,

Yes sadly I agree. The shade of green of the dress is just wrong (though she does wear green and blue. She intends to wait with wearing black til she is old (source: "I Shall Wear Midnight).). And he clearly does not know how to draw a young woman's face. (I had two choices of covers to show. The other one was worse.)
It's a pity, it's actually quite rare that they find a really good artist for book covers. They should look at among comic book artists, particularly comic book cover artists, there are some excellent ones amongst them.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, August 27, 2015   4 comments links to this post

Thursday, August 20, 2015

3D "Life"

My friend, artist Zeppelina, sent me this:

Thought you might like this..... 3D printed forms, based on the Fibonacci number system., and as beautiful as they already are as sculptural forms, they spin them under a strobe light, and they become fascinating and quite magnificent.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, August 20, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

On Robin

I was reminded of something I read in the Batman magazine letter column when I was a kid. Somebody asked the editor:
"Doesn't Robin freeze in the winter, given that his custome has bare legs?"
The editor answered:
"1) Robin is tough, he's no girlie-boy.
 2) He is actually not bare-legged, he's wearing pantyhose."

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Tuesday, August 18, 2015   1 comments links to this post

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Batman Equation - Numberphile

It's fun that it's not just an approximation, it's a perfect Batman logo. If you put in on an issue of Batman, nobody would remark on it.

On Quora somebody asked who wrote it, and this answer came:

I wrote it many, many years ago. I was teaching at a few art schools throughout the greater Sacramento area, and I used it to engage my students in the topic of graphing.  One of my coolest students (Mr. Wilkinson aka i_luv_ur_mom) posted it to Reddit back in 2011 and it went viral.  These days, I'm a full time professor over at American River College, doing every thing I can to make math as enjoyable as possible.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Saturday, August 15, 2015   3 comments links to this post

Sunday, August 09, 2015

Great Olympus offers

If you have considered the Micro Four Thirds system (and you really should, compact and top quality), then right now there are two amazing Olympus offers of next-newest models with kit lens:

The compact workhorse:
Olympus E-PL6
For only $269

And the amazing:
Olympus OM-D E-M5
for just $499

Both are dirt-cheap ways of getting a really good camera with standard zoom lens, and near-endless possibilities for expansion later with fancy lenses and such. And unlike five years ago, now speed and image quality is fully competitive with the big, heavy Canons and Nikons.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Sunday, August 09, 2015   2 comments links to this post

Friday, August 07, 2015

How Amazon saved my life

An article about the surprising advantages of self-publishiong, by Jessica Park.

Bestselling trad-to-indie-author Barry Eisler, famous for turning down a six figure deal from St. Martins Press to go out on his own, took a lot of heat for having compared an author’s relationship with a big publisher to Stockholm syndrome*. The truth is that it’s not a bad comparison at all. Snarky, funny, and exaggerated, perhaps, but there is more than one grain of truth there, and I just know that authors across the country were nodding so violently that we had collective whiplash.

* Stockholm Syndrome: the tendency of long-term hostages to start to sympathize with their emprisoners. 

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Friday, August 07, 2015   5 comments links to this post

Thursday, July 30, 2015

sabeena karnik paper letter font art

sabeena karnik paper letter font art. She is amazing.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, July 30, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Simpsons, "Woke up this morning" from Sopranos

(I wish the quality was better, but it was the only post of it I could find.)

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Thursday, July 30, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Revolution cover


"Revolution" now always reminds me of the Beatles' virtuoso rock rendition of that live on TV, and it makes me sad that we did not get more of Beatles as a rock band.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Sunday, July 26, 2015   3 comments links to this post

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Down to size

"It's an American tradition to cut people down to size just because they brought so much joy into our lives." 
- Carl, The Simpsons

(I'd even say it's a world-wide phenomenon.)

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Wednesday, July 22, 2015   0 comments links to this post

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Don't argue, use friendly chatter

Ever had a stupid conflict in public? You know you're right, but you will never convince the other person, because he will lose face. And the details are not the point anyway.

There is another way:

"I didn't know that. I was totally wrong, and I apologize.  Say, those earrings are fantastic! Did you make them? They really make your eyes light up. Where might I get something like that for my niece?"

It seems like this approach (shortened form) would be so fake that anybody can see through it. Many can, but it WORKS ANYWAY. It does not even have to be a compliment. Simple talk in a friendly way about something the other person is interested in, with sincere interest, and within one or two minutes at most it will be almost impossible to for them to stay upset.

I know it works because it was used on me. A person came over and ordered me to come to a meeting with a salesperson. I pointed out she could not give me orders because I was not her junior. Very clumsily with no segue she started talking about the photo mag I was reading, and in half a minute I had no energy or interest to be upset, and accepted her invitation (no longer an order). So even when very crudely done, and on a person who is fully aware what is going on, it works.

By the way, don't worry about being a fake. You can believe anything you want, can change any belief anytime, and there's enough truth in anything for somebody to believe it.

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Saturday, July 18, 2015   2 comments links to this post

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