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Barely Uninteresting At All Things the new clunker

#1 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 10:35 AM

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I DECIDED TO START ANOTHER ALL-IN-ONE-PLACE THREAD

FOR THESE SHENANIGANS


I've probably been driving Raymo nuts with all my posts being separate threads.

This thread is open to everyone, so feel free to post your own Barely Uninteresting. There really aren't any rules, other than respect each other.

And please don't break Raymo's house rules.


:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#2 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 10:37 AM

An Astrolinguist Explains How to Talk to Aliens

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Released in US theatres just a week ago, Arrival is quickly shaping up to be the science fiction movie of the year, a turn of events that almost no one—including the author himself—would’ve guessed based on its premise.

The story follows linguist Louise Banks (played by Amy Adams) and theoretical physicist Ian Donnelly (played by Jeremy Renner) as they attempt to communicate with a pair of extraterrestrials whose spacecraft has just landed in Montana. For most of us, Arrival was just another entertaining alien flick, but for a handful of Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) researchers who are actually tasked with figuring out how to communicate with extraterrestrials, the film felt more like a documentary than a drama.

“I am so envious of Louise Banks because she gets to have a face to face with ET,” Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) International president Douglas Vakoch told Motherboard. “But in the scenarios that SETI and METI folks deal with there’s no possibility of that. Our idea of a snappy exchange with extraterrestrials is a decade—and that only works if the nearest star is populated.”


...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#3 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 10:37 AM

PROTIP Flushing Sodium Down the Toilet Could Be the Last Thing You Do



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Grant Thompson does silly stuff with science and when he received a request to flush sodium down a toilet he knew who to call—the man who flushed mercury down a toilet with a hypnotic swirl. All cleaned up, the mercury toilet meets its ultimate demise in a mushroom cloud of destruction.

Sodium metal is one of the most highly-reactive metals on the periodic table and it’s pretty much a forgone conclusion that this toilet would not survive a standard flush. So, the guys played around with some other experiments first. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#4 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 10:40 AM



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Every choice is ultimately about whales.



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#5 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:55 AM

How DNA Evidence Confirmed a Soviet Cover-Up of an Anthrax Accident

What it’s like to do science in a post-truth environment

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The city of Sverdlovsk, now renamed Yekaterinburg

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It was, they said, contaminated meat. In April of 1979, people in the Soviet city of Sverdlovsk began falling mysteriously ill: fevers, coughs, vomiting. At least 66 people died. When officials came 1,000 miles from Moscow to investigate, they concluded the victims had fallen ill from eating cattle infected with anthrax.

It was not contaminated meat.

It was an accident at a clandestine biological weapons lab that allowed deadly anthrax spores to contaminate Sverdlovsk’s air, as evidence unearthed later would show. Over the years, as DNA sequencing technology has improved, scientists have been piecing together more and more information about the anthrax strain. This year, as Ars Technica recently noted, U.S. scientists finally sequenced the strain—using decades-old autopsy samples Soviet pathologists had saved in secret.

Not too long after the accident, German and British newspapers began reporting on rumors of anthrax leaking from a military installation at Sverdlovsk. The Soviets denied it—vehemently. In 1988, Soviet officials came to U.S. to give a three-hour talk at the National Academy of Sciences, presenting facts and figures and even slides of gut tissue from autopsies. “Sverdlovsk’s ‘mystery epidemic’ of 1979 lost much of its mystery this month,” began a Science news article at the time, “when a group of Soviet doctors came to the United States and met with scientists and reporters to give a firsthand account of what happened.” ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#6 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:55 AM

Welp. Yup. Not The Onion. Welp. Yep. Haha.

You’re so vain, you probably think this post is about you.

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I’m so old I can remember when Nick Kristof didn’t write for The New York Times. (Don’t know the guy, but props to me 4 going the familiar route, because some left-wing columnists are just like my loved ones. Don’t you worry ’bout me, amirite? TFW every day is casual Friday.) I mean, the world-traveler is giving suggestions to ease anxiety over Cheeto Jesus’ election, “A 12-Step Program for Responding to President-Trump,” and while I wouldn’t go there, I gotta say Nick had just 1 job on Nov. 17 and he did it! Wow. Yup.

The man says it’s bad optics for Clinton supporters—and yes, I think it’s #fakenews that Hillary’s a stinkin’ drunk, the kind of stuff the Daily Mail lives on, sigh, but here we are—to demonize Trump supporters because some of them are “good people.” So yeah, we can agree to agree, though that might be a bridge too far for the kids outside Trump Tower. Just spitballin’, but don’t they have jobs? Nick’s quite literally got it figured out! And if, like, I didn’t already subscribe to two newspapers, I might jump hup-two-three-four on his suggestion to rally behind the not #fakenews reporters who work like dogs to get the post-truth out there. But here’s where I part ways with Nick’s hot take (or did hot takes vanish once the election was over?); when he says we should all attend our local Congressperson’s town hall meet ‘n’ greet, I just gotta say, Really? You’re putting me on, dude! I don’t think anyone I know has done that since interest rates were 19 percent under the greatest ex-president ever, Jimmy Carter. Good times, good times. True times 2 that it’s sad, but like who has the time? I mean, that might blow my mind and make me spill the wine if only because the coffee’s so bad, in a rilly yuge way. So that dereliction of civic duty is on me. I own it ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#7 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:55 AM

http://thenextweb.co...le-isnt-google/

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If you don’t watch where you’re going on the internet, you might be headed down a dark alley before you know it.

Like a lot of big websites, we use Google Analytics to keep track of traffic on TNW. A few weeks ago, however, we spotted something that looked a bit out of the ordinary.

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Yep, that’s some proper Analytics spam to vote for Trump. It looks like you can get special access to something by copy-pasting the link to a Google website.

But something seems a bit off about the link — the capital G seems smaller than normal, being about the same size as a lowercase letter. Let’s take a closer look.

As revealed by Analytics Edge, ɢoogle.com isn’t actually Google.com or google.com, but by using a special character, it’s pretending to be. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#8 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:56 AM



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Gav and Dan venture out to the desert to film some bullets. Make sure you watch in HD for maximum bullet shockwave action!



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#9 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 10:56 AM



The Turkey Sandwich of Justice is a creation made by my friend Ryan, many years ago. Here's how it goes.

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On a sheet of tinfoil, place:

Pulled turkey, sliced mashed potatoes, gravy, hot sauce, stuffing, shredded cheese.

Put the ingredients in the onion on 250 or 300 until the cheese is really melted and everything is hot.

Toast some bread, put mayo on the bottom, sour cream on the top (if you don't like one of those, put both on top or bottom, or use something else...but get some moisture in there so it's not dry).

Slide the hot ingredients onto the bread.

Add a layer of cranberry sauce and sliced dill pickles.

Salt and pepper.

Put the top slice of bread on, then cut it. It should be almost as structurally sound as a building, but don't build a building out of Turkey Sandwiches of Justice because some jackass will call you out on not being up to code, even though it's perfectly safe.



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#10 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:00 AM

‘The biggest case on the planet’

Environmental law professor talks government’s role in causing climate change

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When Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, Mary Wood, law professor and faculty director of the Environmental and Natural Resources (ENR) Law Center at the University of Oregon, was expecting her third son. With a long career both practicing and teaching environmental and natural resources law, climate change was not a new concept for Wood. But in the wake of Katrina’s devastation, she began to see the connections between the future of the environment and the future of humanity more clearly.

“Climate [change] just hit me as this horrendous new reality that my child would be born into,” she says. “Every young person is facing an unthinkable future if we don’t get this problem under control.”

Wood has since become nationally recognized for her scholarship on the public trust doctrine, or the principle that public natural resources must be maintained as a lasting endowment for the public’s use. Recognizing the failure of statutory law to adequately deal with major environmental problems, Wood uses the public trust doctrine to compel government action on climate change. Her 2013 book, Nature’s Trust: Environmental Law for a New Ecological Age, inspired Atmospheric Trust Litigation (ATL), the legal approach now being used in cases and petitions brought by the organization Our Children’s Trust (OCT) on behalf of children and youth throughout the United States and other countries. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#11 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:00 AM

In the fight against fake news, artificial intelligence is waging a battle it cannot win

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It’s become clear that the algorithms Facebook and Google designed to deliver news to their users have failed. But while fake news is a headache for those tech giants right now, the underlying research question—whether and how machines tell truth from lies on the internet—is one that will persist as long as the world wide web stays an open forum.

Facebook and Google’s sizable machine learning divisions have created algorithms that effectively surface information that users want to see. But they’ve been unable to actually understand or vet that info—and in fact, experts across the tech industry say it’s unrealistic to expect any AI or machine learning algorithm to do this task well.

State-of-the-art language processing today

All our best efforts so far are built on research in natural language processing, which teaches AI to read a piece of text, understand the concepts within, and provide insight about its meaning. “Modern machine learning for natural language processing is able to do things like translate from one language to another, because everything it needs to know is in the sentence its processing,” says Ian Goodfellow, a researcher at OpenAI. On the other hand, identifying claims, tracing information through potentially hundreds of sources, and making a judgment on how truthful a claim could be based on a diversity of ideas—all that relies on a holistic understanding of the world, the ability to bridge concepts that aren’t connected by exact words or semantic meaning.

For now, AIs that can simply succeed at question-and-answer games are considered state of the art. As recently as 2014, it was bleeding edge when Facebook’s AI could read a short passage about the plot of the Lord of the Rings, and tell if Frodo had the Ring or not. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#12 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:00 AM

Chicago Alderman Warned About Aggressive Squirrels. Then One Took Him Out

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Last month, Chicago Alderman Howard Brookins was raising the alarm about “aggressive squirrels” wreaking damage on trash cans in his community.

This month, the squirrels struck back — in a Pyrrhic victory.

The aftermath is shown below. If you want to understand what happened, take a close look at the front wheel. If you have a delicate stomach or a strong attachment to squirrels, then, uh, don’t. ...


With video not-so-goodness.......


:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#13 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:01 AM



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Danniel eats 100 pounds of hay, 15 pounds of grain, drinks 100 gallons of water, and produces 150 pounds of droppings – every day.



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#14 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:01 AM



CAUTION: Some language may not be appropriate for work or children.


:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#15 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 10:01 AM




:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#16 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:31 AM

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Guess How Many Calories You'll Consume Today?

It's Not Pretty


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Today is Thanksgiving, a wonderful day full of time with family and friends … and a fattening day with family and friends. Wear stretch pants, people.

Have you ever wondered exactly how much?

According to the Calorie Control Council, the average American consumes 4,500 calories on Turkey Day.

Blah, blah, blah. Just a number, right? Well, below are a nine caloric comparisons to help shed further light. ...



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Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#17 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:33 AM

Students Have ‘Dismaying’ Inability To Tell Fake News From Real, Study Finds

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If the children are the future, the future might be very ill-informed.

That’s one implication of a new study from Stanford researchers that evaluated students’ ability to assess information sources and described the results as “dismaying,” “bleak” and “[a] threat to democracy.”

As content creators and social media platforms grapple with the fake news crisis, the study highlights the other side of the equation: What it looks like when readers are duped.

The researchers at Stanford’s Graduate School of Education have spent more than a year evaluating how well students across the country can evaluate online sources of information. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#18 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:33 AM

The Only Acceptable Reason To Watch The Macy’s Parade

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Nobody watches the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. No one normal, anyway. It’s on too early, too Al Roker-y, and too full of minions. With tepid Broadway vignettes, a horrible-looking mechanical turkey, and the reminder that it’s almost Christmas again and that time drains like sand through our fingertips, it offers little in the way of actual entertainment.

The parade’s one redeeming quality is the balloons — those bloated commercial giants that fill the skies. They are not mere eye candy, but designed to tickle our primordial fears, delve into evolutionary memory to a time when we fled from great ravenous beasts. That’s not to say they are totally neutered. Many people have been injured by these gassy giants, as is detailed in a staggeringly long Wikipedia article devoted to Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade “Incidents and Injuries.” If this celebration were to truly embrace its dark side, it may be worth suffering Matt Lauer’s smugness to tune in.

#10. The Old-Timey Phallus-Nose Balloon

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“Lookit the size of his schnoz!” the 20th-century men laugh. The engorged nose casts a shadow that stretches beyond the horizon. All the women in the crowd shift uncomfortably and make the soft, collective noise of hundreds of nose-bridges being pinched simultaneously. Some cover their children’s eyes, shooting withering glares at their husbands.

“You know what they say about men with big noses!” the men in the crowd joke. Then everyone lapses into uncomfortable silence as the monstrous balloon violates a building. ...



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#19 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:33 AM



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Shot in just over 4 seconds. Amazing video.



Ed. I found the official video

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Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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#20 User is offline   jefn 

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:34 AM



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Fun fact: the effect of mass incarceration on the actual crime rate is effectively ZERO.



:huh:

Jef
p.s. The rest of today's shenanigans may be found at the Barely Uninteresting Blog.


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