links for 2011-02-09

  • "Even in the darkest concrete jungles, especially in the darkest concrete jungles, there’s something to dérive."
  • "Laidre and colleagues believe the gesture arose from an individual and was copied by other mandrills, and eventually developed its own meaning.
    Scientists aren't sure exactly what it means, but the rough translation might be "leave me alone."

    According to the study, "the gesture might have a locally respected meaning," possibly to "inhibit interruptions as a 'do not disturb' sign operates."
    Because the gesture emerged naturally, independent of human involvement, and has now lasted a full generation, it could be considered a cultural behavior, the authors say."

  • "As I noted last year, the city of Cranston, Rhode Island, had a puzzler on its hands after it came to the city's attention that there were hundreds of unauthorized stop signs on its streets, installed by a person or persons unknown. At the time, the mayor said his staff was still researching what to do, but that the city would probably pass a special ordinance giving legal effect to most or all of the signs. According to a report today, it is likely to do just that."