What majesty should be, what duty is, Why day is day, night night, and time is time

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{ This Brooklyn Heights fake townhouse is actually a subway emergency exit }

no master how mustered, mind never mend

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Brothers Vincenzo and Giacomo Barbato named their clothing brand “Steve Jobs” in 2012 after learning that Apple had not trademarked his name. […]

The Barbatos designed a logo that resembles Apple’s own, choosing the letter “J” with a bite taken out of the side. Apple, of course, sued the two brothers for using Jobs’ name and a logo that mimics the Apple logo. In 2014, the European Union’s Intellectual Property Office ruled in favor of the Barbatos and rejected Apple’s trademark opposition. […]

While the Barbatos currently produce bags, t-shirts, jeans, and other clothing and fashion items […] they plan to produce electronic devices under the Steve Jobs brand.

{ Mac Rumors | Continue reading }

art { Left: Ellsworth Kelly, Nine Squares, 1977 | Right: Damien Hirst, Myristyl Acetate, 2005 }

Every day, the same, again

27.jpgThe rise of “stealthing” — when a man secretly removes his condom during sex (and other ways dating got so much worse in 2017)

You could earn cryptocurrency riding a bike next year

Using an ambulance to travel to the hospital in an emergency can cost upwards of $1,000 USD. Now research demonstrates that a significant number of people are instead choosing Uber to perform the same service.

People apply for patents on ideas that are obvious, vague, or were invented years earlier. Too often, applications get approved and low-quality patents fall into the hands of patent trolls, creating headaches for real innovators. Why so many bogus patents get approved?

The Amount and Source of Millionaires’ Wealth (Moderately) Predicts Their Happiness [PDF]

Why didn’t Denmark sell Greenland?
How far ahead of Apple Maps is Google Maps?

Circadian mood variations in Twitter content

On December 30, 1967, senior detectives from Scotland Yard sent owners of gambling clubs into a proverbial spin. Anyone operating a roulette wheel that contained the number zero would be prosecuted, they warned.

The body of one of America’s first serial killers rests 10 feet down. He requested the extra deep cement burial to prevent any potential grave robbers or medical examinations, and rumors have persisted that this was a way to avoid anyone discovering the body isn’t actually his.

“if a dick can go into a woman, it can go up on a wall”

The June snows was flocking in thuckflues on the hegelstomes

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There are 1,036 virtual currencies out there, from Bitcoin to — no joke — BigBoobsCoin. The price of almost every single one was down Friday morning.

{ Bloomberg | Continue reading }

‘I shall not speak, I shall not think: But endless love will mount in my soul.’ –Rimbaud

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To test the relationship between ambient temperature and personality, we conducted two large-scale studies in two geographically large yet culturally distinct countries: China and the United States. […] Our findings provide a perspective on how and why personalities vary across geographical regions beyond past theories (subsistence style theory, selective migration theory and pathogen prevalence theory). As climate change continues across the world, we may also observe concomitant changes in human personality.

{ Nature | Continue reading }

photo { Dana Lixenberg, J 50, 1993 }

Every day, the same, again

25.jpgLong Island Iced Tea Corp. to Rebrand as “Long Blockchain Corp.” [shares rose 238 percent after the company rebranded itself ] More: Rich Cigars, Inc. announced today that it has filed to change its name to “Intercontinental Technology, Inc.” in order to reflect a change in the Company’s direction and overall strategy (“to invest in the development of a unique cryptocurrency mining business”)

A pair of lovers accused of killing the woman’s husband and then seeking cosmetic surgery so the male lover could take his place.

A Contraceptive Gel for Men Is About to Go on Trial

Inside The Shady World Of DNA Testing Companies

Upper-class individuals behave more unethically than lower-class individuals. Participants in the upper-class rank condition took more candy that would otherwise go to children than did those in the lower-rank condition.

Results provide a strong and clear demonstration that listeners can’t distinguish between laughter from different nationalities.

How this man tricked TripAdvisor into listing his shed as London’s No. 1-rated restaurant

How two men turned a Google search and $100 into a hit podcast and a TV deal

Algorithms made him a Wall Street billionaire. His new research center helps scientists mine data for the common good.

After creationism arrived in South Korea in 1980 through the global campaign of leading American creationists, it steadily grew in the country. Our historical study will explain why South Korea became “the creationist capital of the world.”

Rome revokes Ovid’s exile [More: Exile of Ovid ]

Streetlights could be replaced by glow-in-the-dark trees after scientists create plants that shine like fireflies

News is what somebody does not want you to print. All the rest is advertising.

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On January 4, 2012 an explosion killed a man in an apartment in the Ukrainian port city of Odessa. Police arrested another occupant. One month later, on February 4, a second man was arrested in connection with the explosion. On February 27—six days before the March 4 Russian presidential election—Russian state controlled television station Channel One broke the story that the two detainees had been part of a plot to assassinate Russian Prime Minister, and presidential candidate, Vladimir Putin. “Channel One said it received information about the assassination attempt 10 days [earlier] but did not explain why it did not release the news sooner.”

Two points of this anecdote are noteworthy. First, information about the alleged plot was not released as soon as it was available. Instead, state television dropped the bomb- shell at a later, strategically-chosen time. Second, voters drew inferences from the timing of the release.

In this paper we analyze a Sender-Receiver game which connects the timing of information release with voters’ beliefs prior to elections. Early release of information is more credible, in that it signals that Sender has nothing to hide. On the other hand, such early release exposes the information to scrutiny for a longer period of time—possibly leading to the information being discovered to be false. […]

We show that fabricated scandals are only released sufficiently close to the election. […] Perhaps more importantly, we make predictions about the time pattern of campaign events. We show that for a broad range of parameters the probability of release of scandals (authentic or fabricated) is U-shaped, with scandals concentrated towards the beginning and the end of an electoral campaign.

{ When to Drop a Bombshell, 2016 | PDF }

The concentration of scandals in the last months of the 2016 campaign is far from an exception. Such October surprises are commonplace in US presidential elections. […] Political commentators argue that such bombshells may be strategically dropped close to elections so that voters have not enough time to tell real from fake news. Yet, if all fake news were released just before an election, then voters may rationally discount October surprises as fake. Voters may not do so fully, however, since while some bombshells may be strategically timed, others are simply discovered close to the election.

Therefore, the strategic decision of when to drop a bombshell is driven by a tradeoff between credibility and scrutiny. […]

This credibility-scrutiny tradeoff also drives the timing of announcements about candidacy, running mates, cabinet members, and details of policy platforms. An early announcement exposes the background of the candidate or her team to more scrutiny, but boosts credibility. The same tradeoff is likely to drive the timing of information release in other contexts outside the political sphere. For instance, a firm going public can provide a longer or shorter time for the market to evaluate its prospectus before the firm’s shares are traded.

{ When to Drop a Bombshell, 2017 | PDF }

‘We are all put to the test, but it never comes in the form we would prefer.’ –David Mamet

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Frank Hayes (1888–1923) was a jockey who, on June 4, 1923, suffered a fatal heart attack in the midst of a steeplechase at Belmont Park in New York State, USA.

The thirty-five-year-old Hayes had never won a race before and in fact by profession was not actually a jockey but a horse trainer and longtime stableman. The horse, a 20-1 outsider called Sweet Kiss, was owned by Miss A.M. Frayling. Hayes apparently died somewhere in the middle of the race, but his body remained in the saddle throughout. Sweet Kiss eventually crossed the finish line, winning by a head with Hayes technically still atop her back, making him the first, and thus far only, jockey known to have won a race after death.

{ Wikipedia | Continue reading }

photo { Elena Dorfman }

The sun never sets

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Ross McNutt is an Air Force Academy graduate, physicist, and MIT-trained astronautical engineer who in 2004 founded the Air Force’s Center for Rapid Product Development. The Pentagon asked him if he could develop something to figure out who was planting the roadside bombs that were killing and maiming American soldiers in Iraq. In 2006 he gave the military Angel Fire, a wide-area, live-feed surveillance system that could cast an unblinking eye on an entire city.

The system was built around an assembly of four to six commercially available industrial imaging cameras, synchronized and positioned at different angles, then attached to the bottom of a plane. As the plane flew, computers stabilized the images from the cameras, stitched them together and transmitted them to the ground at a rate of one per second. This produced a searchable, constantly updating photographic map that was stored on hard drives. His elevator pitch was irresistible: “Imagine Google Earth with TiVo capability.” […]

If a roadside bomb exploded while the camera was in the air, analysts could zoom in to the exact location of the explosion and rewind to the moment of detonation. Keeping their eyes on that spot, they could further rewind the footage to see a vehicle, for example, that had stopped at that location to plant the bomb. Then they could backtrack to see where the vehicle had come from, marking all of the addresses it had visited. They also could fast-forward to see where the driver went after planting the bomb—perhaps a residence, or a rebel hideout, or a stash house of explosives. More than merely identifying an enemy, the technology could identify an enemy network. […]

McNutt retired from the military in 2007 and modified the technology for commercial development. […] His first customer was José Reyes Ferriz, the mayor of Ciudad Juárez, in northern Mexico. In 2009 a war between the Sinaloa and Juárez drug cartels had turned his border town into the most deadly city on earth. […]

Within the first hour of operations, his cameras witnessed two murders. “A 9-millimeter casing was all the evidence they’d had,” McNutt says. By tracking the assailants’ vehicles, McNutt’s small team of analysts helped police identify the headquarters of a cartel kill squad and pinpoint a separate cartel building where the murderers got paid for the hit.

The technology led to dozens of arrests and confessions, McNutt says, but within a few months the city ran out of money to continue paying for the service.

{ Bloomberg | Continue reading | Radiolab }

photo { William Eggleston, Untitled (Two Girls Walking), 1970-73 }

Every day, the same, again

21.jpg300-year-old note found inside butt of Jesus statue

If you want a baroque and high-tech method of bitcoin storage here is ConnectX, ”a private network of small satellites that stores digital currency wallets and performs financial transactions ‘off-planet’ eliminating the use of the Internet.”

Unpopular Ideas about Blockchains

We rely on economic theory to discuss how blockchain technology will shape the rate and direction of innovation

Rodents have joined mosquitoes in the cross-hairs of scientists working on a next-generation genetic technology known as “gene drive” to control pests.

The Hidden Signals in Corporate Ribbon-Cutting Ceremonies

Work gets done at 11AM on a Monday in October. At all other times of day, we’re basically slacking from our most productive

Probabilistic genotyping uses complex mathematical formulas to examine the statistical likelihood that a certain genotype comes from one individual over another. The Impenetrable Program Transforming How Courts Treat DNA Evidence

“People who serve on juries don’t have more sympathy or give a lighter sentence based on claims of bad genetics. And sometimes, introducing genetic evidence can even make things worse for a defendant.”

How criminal courts are putting brains — not people — on trial

When Ex-convicts Become Criminologists

The production effect is the memory advantage of saying words aloud over simply reading them silently

When your attention shifts from one place to another, your brain blinks. The blinks are momentary unconscious gaps in visual perception and came as a surprise to the team of Vanderbilt psychologists who discovered the phenomenon while studying the benefits of attention.

Neuroscientists have identified how exactly a deep breath changes your mind

Elevation of the eye-balls on winking

Drug-Associated Spontaneous Orgasm (Spontaneous orgasm is characterized by a spontaneous onset of orgasm without any preceding sexual or nonsexual trigger)

Coffee consumption and health: umbrella review of meta-analyses of multiple health outcomes (three to four cups a day provide largest risk reduction for various health outcomes)

At McKinley Climate Lab, researchers create fearsome weather to test cars and planes

How Independent Bookstores Have Thrived in Spite of Amazon.com

52 things I learned in 2017

How many colors were there in a medieval rainbow?

Graphic designer Ivan Chermayeff passes away at 85. His firm Chermayeff & Geismar designed logos for Pan Am, Mobile Oil, Chase Bank, Xerox, NBC, Showtime, The Museum of Modern Art, Smithsonian Institution, National Geographic…

When Rome conquered Greece, they replaced their own dull pantheon with renamed versions of Zeus, Athena, and the others. But not all Roman gods were Greek copies — here are a few of the more important ones.

In the winter of 1961, Claes Oldenburg opened a store on the Lower East Side of Manhattan (107E. 2nd St) selling his work, circumventing the usual practice of selling art  through a gallery.

Starbucks is opening its biggest and most interactive location to date, in Shanghai, with help from Chinese technology giant Alibaba Group [Thanks Tim]

CryptoKitties: Collect and breed digital cats.

‘The past is always attractive because it is drained of fear.’ –Thomas Carlyle

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{ The American Museum of Natural History window and New York Philharmonic window at Bergdorf Goodman | More: 2017 Bergdorf Goodman holiday windows }

It was put in the newses what he did, nicies and priers, the King fierceas Humphrey, with illysus distilling, exploits and all

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The Food and Drug Administration has approved the first digital pill for the US which tracks if patients have taken their medication. The pill called Abilify MyCite, is fitted with a tiny ingestible sensor that communicates with a patch worn by the patient — the patch then transmits medication data to a smartphone app which the patient can voluntarily upload to a database for their doctor and other authorized persons to see. Abilify is a drug that treats schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and is an add-on treatment for depression.

{ The Verge | Continue reading }

photo { Bruce Davidson, Subway platform in Brooklyn, 1980 }