MobileFilter

The Community Weblog. In byte-sized chunks.

Main Street ran east to west, land astride platted into tidy rectangles

Maps of street layouts, coloured based on their orientation. Includes San Francisco, New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Tokyo, Paris, Chicago, Berlin, Boston and London.

I ate roadkill raccoon

Reanna Alder eats roadkill raccoon so you don't have to. (Article has no images except a highly processed one of a live raccoon.)

What to read when pressed for time.

17 Brilliant Short Novels You Can Read in a Sitting by Lincoln Michel at Electric Literature:

This week author Ian McEwan expressed his love of short novels, saying "very few [long] novels earn their length." Certainly it seems like a novel has to be a minimum of 500 pages to win a major literary award these days, and many genre novels have ballooned to absurd sizes.

I love a good tome, but like McEwan many of my favorite novels are sharpened little gems. It's immensely satisfying to finish a book in a single day, so in the spirit of celebrating quick reads here are some of my favorite short novels. I've tried to avoid the most obvious titles that are regularly assigned in school (The Stranger, Heart of Darkness, Mrs Dalloway, Of Mice and Men, Frankenstein, The Crying of Lot 49, etc.). Hopefully you'll find some titles here you haven't read before.


Lazy Readers' Book Club"This is where you go when you want to read quality books that don't take years to finish. My mission is to increase interest in reading by providing cool, short book recommendations for all ages. From interest comes devotion."

50 Incredible Novels Under 200 Pages — Emily Temple at Flavorwire.

46 Brilliant Short Novels You Can Read In A Day"Great reads under 200 pages. Mostly."; Daniel Dalton for BuzzFeed.

20 Classic Novels You Can Read in One Sitting — Mark Nichol, Daily Writing Tips; and from Huffington Post, These Amazing Classic Books Are So Short You Have No Excuse Not To Read Them.

Bonus link for fun: Reading Recommendations · Classic Novels from The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County.

"Because we're here, lad. Nobody else. Just us."

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the film Zulu, which depicts the Battle of Rorke's Drift (previously) in 1879. Here's a little history of the production, as well as ten things you may not know about the film and an argument that it's the best British war film ever made. Film Historian Sheldon Hall discusses the film's legacy, and Zulu leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi (who portrayed his own great grandfather in the film) reminisces about the shoot.

Far beyond "every good boy does fine"

Music Theory for Musicians and Normal People Toby W. Rush's "Music Theory for Musicians and Normal People" covers a massive range of topics like pitch, rhythm, scales, intervals, and harmonics. The online book itself is arranged as a collection of about 50 PDFs that offer diagrams, notes, and tips for everything music theory related.

Via Lifehacker.

"I'm Emanuela Orlandi and I attend a science high school."

The Orlandi Code: [Toronto Star] The Mafia, communist spies, the Pope and the twisted mystery of a kidnapped Vatican girl.

The new single from Aphex Swift

We Are Never Getting Girl/Boygether

EVE Online: Phoebe changes everything about capital-class ship travel

Possibly one of the largest game changes ever seen. Being over ten years old, Eve has started to suffer from stagnation in its null-security space operations and politics. After the large $300k+ battle of B-RVRB, many of the large alliances and coalitions settled in to rebuild their massive capital ships. Many of them brokered deals to not attack each other and this has been going on for quite some time. Without high-end targets to go after, those operating large capital fleets get bored and find ways to PvP on lesser well-equipped players with their Titans and supercarriers. This type of PvP has been around for a long time of course, but now it is to the extent that CCP Games has announced highly drastic changes to the way that capital ships and others travel via jump mechanics (teleportation), bridging structures and gate travel. All jump ranges by most capital ships, usually in the 11-15 light year range, will be reset to a 5 light year range in the upcoming Phoebe expansion in early November. This, along with the introduction of fatigue timers, will drastically alter the travel map for very large ships in that old routes between regions will no longer exist for most areas of the galaxy. The player base has been split between being overly-exhilarated and highly-wronged. But all agree, the in-game universe size has been re-writ enormously.

Response thread to above announcement thread based on feedback

A biomechanical analysis of coitus

Objective: To describe male spine movement and posture characteristics during coitus and compare these characteristics across 5 common coital positions. Results: Based on range of motion, the least-to-most recommended positions for a male flexion-intolerant patient are mSIDE, mMISS2, mQUAD2, mMISS1, and mQUAD1 (NSFW).

boo

13 classic scenes that explain how horror movies work.

Neanderthal and Sapiens, sitting in a tree...

"Scientists have reconstructed the genome of a man who lived 45,000 years ago, by far the oldest genetic record ever obtained from modern humans. The research, published on Wednesday in the journal Nature, provided new clues to the expansion of modern humans from Africa about 60,000 years ago, when they moved into Europe and Asia. And the genome, extracted from a fossil thighbone found in Siberia, added strong support to a provocative hypothesis: Early humans interbred with Neanderthals."

Micropower's Quiet Takeover

Small-scale, low-carbon generation now produces one-quarter of world electricity (Rocky Mountain Institute)

Who Wears The Pants Around Here?

In 1938 Los Angeles, Helen Hulick went to jail for wearing slacks in courtroom. 'Kindergarten teacher Helen Hulick made Los Angeles court history — and struck a blow for women's fashion — in 1938. Hulick arrived in downtown L.A. court to testify against two burglary suspects. But the courtroom drama immediately shifted to the slacks she was wearing. Judge Arthur S. Guerin rescheduled her testimony and ordered her to wear a dress next time.' 'The next day, Hulick showed up in slacks. Judge Guerin held her in contempt. She was given a five-day sentence and sent to jail.'

'Hundreds sent letters of protest to the courthouse. Guerin's contempt citation was overturned by the Appellate Division during a habeas corpus hearing. Hulick was free to wear slacks to court.

A couple of months later, Hulick came back to court. Her point made, this time she wore a dress.'

That New Costume Smell

If you were a child in the 70s who dreamed of being Boss Hogg or an 80s baby desperate to be a Rubik's Cube, your dream could come true for less than $5. For that was the Golden Age of Ben Cooper and Collegeville Costume. Relive their glory days by perusing some vintage catalogs.

Collegeville: 1966, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1981, 1983, 1992
Ben Cooper: 1973, 1980, 1981
More photos

Halco costumes also deserve a mention, though they don't seem to inspire as much nostalgia. Perhaps because they licensed less popular characters like Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and The Heinz Pickle.

He looks like a reverse Benjamin Buttons

Zach Galifianakis and Brad Pitt share some gum

You probably should play all of these...

With thousands of reader suggestions, Kotaku has published a directory of "Classic PC games you must play". The most voted for free games [links go to places you can download games]: Star Control II, Tyrian, Zork, Battle Zone, Myth II, and Daggerfall. Some of the most votes for games that are available for $10 or less:Master of Orion ($5),Quest for Glory ($10), Planescape ($10), Total Annihilation ($6), Heroes of Might and Magic III ($9), Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis ($5), Little Big Adventures 2 ($5), Descent ($10), and Betrayal at Krondor ($6). More idiosyncratic than PC Games list of the top games, but the people have spoken...

Car model diorama-rama

Instagram user takupon0816 is a constant stream of the most incredible model car dioramas. The weathering and lighting are so spot on that most barely give away they are in fact small scale models and not life-sized photoshoots. Weathering is a big thing in scale modeling with tools and techniques specifically made for it. There are also diorama model museums in Japan dedicated to showcasing the craft.

Michaelangelo: You're not a quitter, dude. Finish what you started.

This Is What Happens When You Eat 15 Slices Of NYC Pizza In One Day

Related: How I Took On The Citi Field Food Challenge (And You Can, Too)

#Krogisnotforsale

Atlanta's graffiti filled Krog Street tunnel erased in protest. Artists and residents of Atlanta's Cabbagetown neighborhood, angry about an upcoming ticket-holders only masquerade ball (promising a "sultry underground experience" where "taboo will be the norm" for $40 not including drinks) have, in protest, painted over all the graffiti art that made Krog street tunnel remarkable to begin with.

Through the Eyes of a Monster, tales from a different vantage point

About 40 years ago, Edward D. Wood, Jr. published a number of short stories in "girly" mags (cover images likely NSFW), but those stories haven't been republished, until now. Blood Splatters Quickly collects 32 stories from Ed Wood, and you can read The Day The Mummy Returned on Boing Boing. If you like tales told by the monsters, io9 collected more of such stories, videos, and video games, and there's a related AskMe post, looking for stories where humans are the monsters, many of which can be read online, as linked below the break.

100 Years of Martin Gardner!

In Honor of the Centennial of Martin Gardner's birth (October 21, 1914), we've lined up Thirty-One Tricks and Treats for you: Magazine articles, new and classic puzzles, unique video interviews, and lots more.The Nature of Things / Martin Gardner [46min video] ✤ The College Mathematics Journal, January 2012 dedicated to Gardner with all articles readable online.

Moderation Exasperation

So companies like Facebook and Twitter rely on an army of workers employed to soak up the worst of humanity in order to protect the rest of us. And there are legions of them—a vast, invisible pool of human labor. Hemanshu Nigam, the former chief security officer of MySpace who now runs online safety consultancy SSP Blue, estimates that the number of content moderators scrubbing the world's social media sites, mobile apps, and cloud storage services runs to "well over 100,000"—that is, about twice the total head count of Google and nearly 14 times that of Facebook.
The Laborers Who Keep Dick Pics and Beheadings Out of Your Facebook Feed

Translation: I love mom

AutoRap is an app that will take words spoken into it and automatically tune them into one of several pre-set rap beats. Here, a young girl makes an adorable rap about her mother.

Why I Left

"It's about readers and their trust in us." Dave McKinney, longtime Chicago Sun-Times political reporter, resigns after the paper appears to cave to pressure from billionaire Illinois Republican gubernatorial nominee Bruce Rauner to punish McKinney for writing an article that portrayed Rauner as a thug. After supporting McKinney publicly but attempting to remove him from the political beat, the paper reversed its three-year-old policy of not endorsing candidates by endorsing Rauner, who until recently owned 10% of the company that owns the paper.

Photographing Today's Solar Eclipse

This afternoon/evening, North Americans will be treated to a partial solar eclipse, making for some great photography opportunities from Chicago to LA and points northward (coverages as high as ~60% in the Northwestern US and Canada) -- even if there are some clouds! Not sure how to photograph an eclipse safely? Here are some detailed guides.

Along with the two guides mentioned above (one of which even has a handy table of exposure times!), there's an even more detailed guide in two parts [1,2] from the wonderful Mr.Eclipse.com.

But remember, safety first! Even during a partial eclipse, focusing on the sun can rapidly damage your delicate optics (and possibly your camera's). Not sure what filters are good enough to protect you? Here is a detailed comparison of various filter materials (including both ones designed for solar observation and makeshift ones like exposed film, magnetic media, & pop-tart wrappers) which includes measurements of their UV, visible light, and IR transmittance properties.