Friday, 22 August 2014

Nightingale And Canary

Australian artist Andy Thomas specializes in creating 'audio life forms': beautiful abstract shapes that react to sounds. In this animated short, he visualizes two recorded bird sounds from the archives of the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision.

Vimeo link

(via Nag on the Lake)

The Monumental Cemetery Of Staglieno

image credit: massimo ankor

One of the largest cemeteries in Europe, the Cimitero monumentale di Staglieno in Genoa, Italy covers more than a square kilometer. It opened in 1851 and since then has gained a reputation for its monuments to those buried there.

And what monuments they are. It is a place for contemplation, for reflection on human frailty and the short-lived nature of our time on earth.

If You're Born In The Sky, What's Your Nationality?

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An American woman is about to board a plane and, pregnant as she is, they let her on. Her flight, on Lufthansa Airlines, will leave Frankfurt, Germany, and travel nonstop to the Maldive Islands in the Indian Ocean.

Hours later, just as her plane passes 37,000 feet above Karachi, Pakistan, heading south, her baby, in an inconvenient act of impetuosity, decides she wants to be born right then, right there. So , we've got an American mom on a German airplane in Pakistani airspace.

What nationality is the baby?

Top 8 Most Innovative Pinball Machines Of All Time

image credit: Adam Fagen

Early pinball machines were built without flippers. Instead of the now-standard paddles, users pulled a plunger to shoot balls onto the playing field, aiming for holes that were worth various point values.

From the invention of solid-state guts to holographic playing fields, from the advent of anticheating devices to online user mods, here's the evolution history's most mechanical video-game console.

How Do You Know You Exist?

How do you know you're real? Is existence all just a big dream? Has some mad scientist duped us into simply believing that we exist? James Zucker investigates all of these questions in this mind-boggling tribute to René Descartes' 'Meditations on First Philosophy.'

YouTube link

10 Little-Known But Amazing Structures Of The Ancient World

image credit: Sarah Jamerson

The Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal, Machu Picchu and the Great Pyramid of Giza are just a few of the names that come to mind when talking about architectural wonders of the ancient world.

But unknown to many, there are equally numerous other impressive structures that ancient human civilization has left behind for us that will certainly leave you completely stunned. Here are 10 of the little-known but amazing structures of the ancient world.

12 Untranslatable Words (And Their Translations)

image credit: Anette og Jan

Words like the Portuguese saudade, or Danish hyggelig, can only truly be understood by speakers of those languages. Right? We'd all like to believe in untranslatable words.

It's such a romantic thought: that there exist out there, like undiscovered desert islands, ideas we have never even conceived of. Carefully guarded by foreigners they have endured down the centuries, nuggets of culture overlooked by the rest of the world.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

Speed Painting Artist

Watch this speed painting artist while he's working on the beach. You won't see what he painted until the very last seconds.

YouTube link

Manul - The Cat That Time Forgot

image credit: Silvain de Munck

Have you ever wanted to take a trip through time to see what animals looked like millions of years ago? When it comes to cats there is little or no need. This beautiful specimen is a Manul, otherwise known as Pallas' Cat.

About twelve million years ago the Pallas' Cat was one of the first two modern cats to evolve and it hasn't changed since. The other species, Martelli's Cat, is extinct so what you are looking at here is a unique window in to the past of modern cats.

For Sale: Electric Wheel Chair Lift

Comes with patient.

(via Bad Newspaper)

The Sedlec Ossuary - The Art Of Human Remains

image credit: PDXdj

The Sedlec Ossuary is a small Roman Catholic chapel, located beneath the Cemetery Church of All Saints in Sedlec in the Czech Republic. The ossuary is estimated to contain the skeletons of between 40,000 and 70,000 people, whose bones have in many cases been artistically arranged to form decorations and furnishings for the chapel. The reason why takes a little explanation.

No Humans Allowed At This Doggie Pool Party

Dogs splash and play in a bone-shaped pool at a 'country' doggie day care in Michigan.

YouTube link

(thanks Cora)

How Many Capital Cities Do You Know?

Do you know your Dhaka from your Dakar? How many capital cities do you know?

(via Miss Cellania)

16 Out-Of-Context IKEA Instructions To Help You Live A Better Life

Printed without words, IKEA instructions are meant to be used around the globe. Someone in Tokyo can build his KLÄPPE swivel chair from the same booklet as a college kid in her Maryland dorm.

This saves the Swedish furniture manufacturer tons of money in printing costs, but it also serves a surprising purpose: Taken out of context, certain pages and details from IKEA instruction books can be interpreted as guides to living a fuller and more happy life.

Why Movie Dinosaurs Are Nothing Like The Real Thing

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Movie dinosaurs are almost as old as cinema itself. But our big screen version of these prehistoric beasts may be very wide of the mark. Film and television-makers have turned these extinct prehistoric beasts into living icons of contemporary culture and shaped our thinking about every aspect of their appearance and behaviour.

The problem is, much of what they've taught us is wrong.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Wild Cats VS Toilet Paper

Cats enjoy shredding paper products like toilet paper, tissues and paper towels. According to feline behavior experts, they do this as a way to relieve boredom. Do wild species of cats (servals/bobcats/lynx/ocelots) like to destroy toilet paper like their domestic cousins?

YouTube link

(via Everlasting Blort)

8 Jaw-Dropping Photos Of Earth From Space

image credit: Gabriel Jorby

As satellite technology has improved over the last half-century, our view of Earth has gotten more and more breathtaking. Aerial photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand has collected 150 incredible images from these and other satellites in a new book, Earth From Space.

The images in the book are paired with information and essays of environmental themes, such as pollution, desertification, urban sprawl, agriculture, and disasters. Here are 8 of these jaw-dropping photos.

Rollin' Bones: The History Of Dice

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Dice have been used since before recorded history, and it's uncertain where they originated. The oldest known dice were excavated as part of a 5000-year-old backgammon set at the Burnt City, an archeological site in south-eastern Iran.

The first dice throwers weren't gamers, though. They were religious shamans who used astragali (talus bones), as well as sticks, rocks, or even animal entrails, for divination, the practice of telling the future by interpreting signs from the gods. How did these early dice make their way from the shaman to the layman?

Is It OK To Pee In The Ocean?

Peeing in the ocean: Many have done it, but few admit to it. Fortunately for beachgoers everywhere, the latest episode of Reactions (a series from the American Chemical Society) explains why, from an environmental perspective, it is absolutely OK to pee in the ocean.

YouTube link

(thanks Elaine)

2014 Information Security Breaches Survey

A Department for Business Innovation and Skills market survey infographic made by Egress Software Technologies which highlights the data breaches and challenges facing organisations in 2014.

(thanks Paul)

Airplanes Look Like Epic Shooting Stars In The Air Traffic

Ever wondered what it's like in one of the busiest airports in the world? With a flight landing and taking off almost every minute during peak hours, it can get pretty insane.

Shoot a timelapse of that, and you get transported to a sci-fi world with shooting stars breaking into the atmosphere. Shot in the restricted runway area of Singapore Changi Airport.

Vimeo link

(thanks Cora)

19 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Beethoven

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Ludwig van Beethoven was born in 1770 in Bonn, Germany. Beethoven would become a virtuoso pianist and canonical composer of dozens of symphonies, concertos for piano, piano sonatas, and string quartets.

Having performed brilliantly for much of his youth and into his early thirties, the musician would slowly lose his hearing and ultimately focus his efforts on composing alone. Here is a list of things you might not know about Beethoven.