links for 2011-09-07

  • "Winstanley is a truly amazing and painstaking account of misery, as it depicts those whose cause is righteous and nonviolent. Winstanley evokes the civil war mood of the mid 1600s – where Cromwell's parliamentary forces defeat and behead the king to only find that there is a second bloody civil war where the levellers, those who wanted a share in the land, are crushed by Cromwell, thereby ending a shortlived optimism that things for the poor will change for the better. The narrative is taken from the pamphlet writings of Gerrard Winstanley a gentle, Christian radical. He sort of resembles a hippie of the 1970s. The film is based on the book by David Caute, "Comrade Jacob," but has been thoroughly reworked by co-directors Brownlow and Mollo."
  • "What's a commune? We use the Wikipedia definition: A commune is simply “a community that shares resources.” You can start one today, right where you are (in your apartment building, dorm, office or cul-de-sac). Use the resource-sharing tools below, or come up with your own. Keep us posted and we'll share your ideas and stories on the blog. All together now…"

links for 2011-09-06

  • "The one coffee-making activity I've always avoided, though, was roasting coffee. I assumed that coffee roasting required large, expensive machinery and considerable training. But a few weeks ago, I heard about a way to roast coffee using a hot air popcorn popper. I gave it a try and found out it was fun and very easy. It takes less than 15 minutes to roast a small batch."

links for 2011-09-04

  • "The essential point of this dissertation is to demonstrate that a crucial element of Plotinus’ thought— his conception of mystical union with the One— can no longer be understood solely within the conventional history of philosophy, or as the product of a unique, sui generis psychological propensity, but rather must be reconceptualized in the broader context of contemporaneous Sethian Gnostic thought and praxis. I conclude that Plotinus tacitly patterned his mystical ascent on the structure of ritual ascent that is first attested in Gnostic sources, including the Platonizing Sethian tractates Zostrianos (NHC VIII,1) and Allogenes (NHC XI,3) of which we have Coptic translations from Nag Hammadi and whose Greek Vorlagen were known to have been read in Plotinus’ school."
  • "A Catholic school student who identifies herself by the avatar name “Nekochan” started an unofficial library of banned books that she runs out of her locker at school. She began to lend books to her classmates when her school banned a long list of classic titles, including The Canterbury Tales, Paradise Lost and Animal Farm."

links for 2011-08-25

  • "It was the summer of '97 and I was a college kid working part time as a programmer at an ad agency. I wrote a simple CMS: practically my first perl program (I was so happy to not have to write in anything Microsoft!). I got an old DEC Alpha Multia in exchange for some freelance Java work. I stuffed it under my desk at work and registered the domain name in October. Jeff "Hemos" Bates chipped in on the registration fee. Within months we were serving thousands of people per day on a system that looked remarkably similar to the Slashdot you see today. It was simple: I just was sharing stories that I stumbled on with a small group of friends."

    "Slashdot has been read by kernel engineers and billionaires. By sys-admins and CEOs. By high school kids and government bureaucrats. But what brings so many of them together is that we are nerds."

links for 2011-08-18

  • "Tori Amos: You cry during sex and get real quiet after."

    "Peaches: If you're not getting a handjob under the table right now, it's because you're giving one."

    (tags: music culture)
  • " is the result of an exploratory project intended to help you find new books by comparing the content of the books themselves, similar to the way that matches music lovers to new music. We're attempting to help you find books with similar themes and writing style to books you've enjoyed in the past – comparing elements like Description, Pacing, Density, Perspective, and Dialog – while at the same time allowing you to specify details like… more Medieval Weapons."

links for 2011-08-15

  • "President Obama has been criticized by both left and right for poor communication. That may be true, but the fault lies less with the president than with his adversaries, in particular the members of the Tea Party, many of whom demonstrate contempt not only for the concrete requirements of a social species (like government), but for a more abstract intrinsic human need: language."

    "you can't (no matter how godly, or how powerful, you are) unilaterally decide what words mean. Humpty Dumpty was a big egg perched precariously on a high narrow wall. His need to make English work his way arose from fear about his future. But manipulating language could not save him from his fate."

links for 2011-08-14

links for 2011-08-12

  • "A U.S. company says it is getting closer to putting prototype electric cars on the road that will be powered by the heavy-metal thorium."

    "Because thorium is so dense, similar to uranium, it stores considerable potential energy: 1 gm of thorium equals the energy of 7,500 gallons (28,391 L) of gasoline Stevens says. So, using just 8 gm of thorium in a car should mean it would never need refueling."

links for 2011-08-10

  • "I am no longer going to fight with people who are more interested in keeping the status quo than they are in changing the world. I am no longer going to fight with people who are more interested in keeping their power and their privilege than they are about fighting for justice. I am going to let them keep doing what they are doing but I am not going to participate. I will, however, actively work against anyone who seeks to marginalize or harm my community.
    Instead I am going to start living into a new world. I’m going to start doing the real work. I’m going to spend my energy creating the structures that need to exist instead of fighting the ones that don’t."
  • "DefCon, the long-running, annual hacker conference in Las Vegas, lowered its age restrictions this year for the inaugural 'DefCon Kids Village.'

    Roughly 60 young hacker-wannabes aged eight to 16 were mentored in the arts of 'white hat' hacking, or hacking in a responsible manner, this past weekend."

    "CyFi, a ten-year-old Girl Scout and DefCon Kids co-founder from California, presented her findings on an exploit in an unnamed social game. She began tinkering with the code after growing impatient with the game's slow place, and discovered that by disconnecting her phone from Wi-Fi and re-setting the clock forward in small increments, she could fast-forward many of the actions in the game, 'a new class of vulnerabilities' she dubbed 'TimeTraveler.'

    CyFi presented her findings at a talk called 'Apps—A Traveler of Both Time and Space, And What I Learned About Zero-Days and Responsible Disclosure.'"

  • "Until fairly recently, Canadian English was a severely understudied national variety of English. Reliable sociolinguistic data of a national scope has been especially hard to come by and, until the mid-1990s, was virtually inexistent."

    "The last ten years in particular have produced significant data on a national scale that allows the characterization of the variety more adequately than before."

  • "What are the tools every hands-on projecteer needs? To answer that question, we went right to DIYers themselves, specifically the exhibitors at last fall's World Maker Faire NY event."
  • "As time went on, we became a confederation of hedonists with little regard for one another's feelings."