Saturday 13 April 2024

the bessemer saloon ship (11. 484)

Steel magnate and prolific inventor during the late nineteenth century and second-wave of the Industrial Revolution—whose innovations were uniquely punctuated with enduring commercial success, including steam-power and techniques that improved steel manufacturing and solidified Sheffield’s reputation for more than a hundred years as a major industrial centre (also the namesake for the Alabama steel town) as well as numerous other improvements in material engineering with glass and iron, Henry Bessemer’s chronic disposition to sea-sickness inspired to come up with his rather singular flop. Though working in principal and in models, the sea-trial ended in disaster, crashing into the pier at Calais as it attempted to leave the harbour—outside of the control of the crew—however his idea for a self-righting cabin, a saloon, that swung on gimbals and hydraulic cylinders during cross-Channel journeys for passengers’ comfort in rough weather was ahead of its time. More from Amusing Planet at the link above.


one year ago: assorted links to revisit

two years ago: the Unicode Technical block of characters

three years ago: the show goes on, the legacy of project MKUltra, a capsule hotel annex in the woods plus more on Star Fleet uniforms

four years ago: extended Eastertide plus funny bios for birds

five years ago: empathy and tribalism, more coding by radio, retro McDonald’s packaging plus perennial cereal crops

Friday 12 April 2024

outline of egypt (11. 483)

Through a series of photographs capturing the outlines of the ensemble of the Pyramids at Giza shrouded in mist, we discover the extensive portfolio of Karim Amr, a young professional whose able to hone and articulate his eye for images and subjects of choice partially by dent of living near the ancient necropolis. The nested silhouettes of the monumental tombs look like computer-rendered backgrounds of an vintage video game. Much more at the links above.


one year ago: NPR leaves Twitter plus a classic from The Fifth Dimension

two years ago: assorted links to revisit

three years ago: Yuri’s Night, the Union Jack, Bill Haley and his Comets plus On the Record

four years ago: a historic vaccination campaign, artist Jim Gary, St Julius, an Eames multipurpose piece of furniture plus a sketching lesson

five years ago: the found of Bauhaus (1919), more on First Flight, outsider artist Emma Kunz plus the first racoons in Germany

Thursday 11 April 2024

daylighting (11. 482)

Having previously looked at the subject of hidden urban watercourses, we enjoyed revisiting the topic and

learning about efforts for resurfacing and rehabilitating rivers, creeks and streams that have been buried, culverted and diverted and otherwise forgotten to make way for city development in the metropolitan areas of Canada, as with many other locations around the world, in this interactive, scrollytelling article from the CBC—via Nag on the Lake—on the ancient waterways of Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. Restoration efforts hope to not only rewild municipalities but also seen as a means to mitigate flooding and the urban heat island effect.


one year ago: assorted links to revisit plus Old Testament caricatures

two years ago: the Ukranian tryzub plus Turkish Star Trek

three years ago: St Godebertha, an uneventful day plus a screen-test for A Clockwork Orange

four years ago: Lucas Cranach the Elder, German Sesame Street plus the Louie Louie Advocacy and Appreciation Society

five years ago: Hello Europe posters for Brexit, check-out etiquette, Venezuelan politics plus the elements of typography

Wednesday 10 April 2024

is this the leto boy i worked for? (11. 481)

Though advertised as a clip-show of highlights from the past hundred minisodes, an unexpected, rather absurd visitor, America’s newscaster emeritus, Dune-loving Tom Brokaw, steals the spotlight of the Flop House to pitch his musical version of the Frank Herbert epic—incorporating elements of Fiddler on the Roof—far superior to the HP Lovecraft Historical Society’s 1979 and 2001 revival parody A Shoggoth on the Roof by He Who (for legal reasons) Must Not Be Named, like the above lyric from the lament of mentat Thufir Hawat for his protรฉgรฉ Paul Atreides. In the tradition of the best musical homages from The Simpsons, there are some really clever numbers explored to a lesser or greater extant on the expense of the exasperation of the co-hosts. As the sequel premieres, Brokaw also teases a part two with the template of Sweeney Todd. We also very much enjoyed the leitmotif from A Baliset Player on the Sietch of the Bene Gesserit Gaius Helen Mohiam with the lines “How can I hope to make you understand don’t you move your right hand. Keep it that small box or I will land on your neck with my gom jabbar,” inspired by “Far from the Home I Love.” Listen and subscribe at the link above. Yubby dibby dibby dibby dibby dune. 


one year ago: 12 Angry Men (1957) 

two years ago: the first 3D studio release (1953), assorted links to revisit plus random ID cards

three years ago: the Thelema Book of Law, the Statue of Anne (1710) plus a glossary of television terms

four years ago: German and Finnish COVID-19 terminology, a memorial service for the Notre Dame fire, William of Ockham plus more links to enjoy

five years ago: vintage volvelles, a reversal on dollar coins, the Moka Pot reissued, shopping per horoscope, imaging a black hole plus punitive tariffs on the EU

Tuesday 9 April 2024

8x8 (11. 480)

chambre de bonne: disappearing top-floor tiny apartments of Paris  

semifreddo: the origin of Neapolitan ice cream  

the united states of division: a prescient 2004 release by Prince & The New Power Generation  

court dress: the pink sleeves of the supreme courts of Labrador and Newfoundland are in deference to the former summer robes for sittings in England and Wales—via Super Punch  

geoengineering: Tennessee legislature outlaws (see also) so called chemtrails 

bpm: Chechnya announces ban of music considered too fast or too slow  

backsplash: mosaic of the day  

warehouse-to-loft-conversion: a tribute to the last of New York’s artists’ dwellings—via Messy Nessy Chic

anticipation of joy (11. 479)

We liked this Guardian column—and not only for the vocabulary lesson with the concept of Vorfreude, roughly translated above, and antithesis of Schadenfreude—and advice on cultivating anticipatory joy as something to defer and to look forward to. Whilst future-oriented, the practise does not estrange oneself from the present here-and-now but rather can instigate calm and focus and the opposite of the adage, “if you worry, you suffer twice,” (which itself is not necessarily even true considering the suspense and potential to catastrophise tends to be worse than the actual event often times) with a gradual affirming routine that anyone can manage, regardless of circumstances, and mitigate hedonistic regression—that is, becoming enured to how good one has it. More strategies and pro-tips from Rachel Dixon at the link up top.


one year ago: an omnibus of easter eggs, a jolly 3-D printing torture test plus a mysterious cave in Finland

two years ago: an accomplished French chemist, Dreamcoat (1968), artist Witkiewicz plus assorted links to revisit

three years ago: Concrete and Clay (1965), your daily demon: Marbas, automotive designer Robert Opron, more links to enjoy, the Duke of Edinburgh passes away plus the Lost Tapes of Club 27

four years ago: studies in kineticsmechanical casts, Maundy Thursday plus Easter Witches

five years ago: found sounds, cognitive flexibilities, Moscow’s Nakomfim Building, Alta y Baja California plus a proposed tax on digital giants

Monday 8 April 2024

the first tuesday after the first monday in november (11. 478)

Co-sponsored as a bipartisan measure by Republican Barry Goldwater and Hubert H Humphrey, both loosing in recent years their respective bids to become US president, the Senate voted to make Election Day (in even numbered years) a biannual, paid federal holiday on this day in 1974. Despite passage in the upper chamber of Congress, the amendment never came to the floor in the House of Representatives. Though not quite a perennial push, the proposal has seen multiple attempts to revitalise the legislation and ensure less conflict between work schedules and civic duties, most recently during last year’s session and before that in 2019. Voting in Europe is held on Sundays.

penumbra (11. 477)

Visible for totality in a narrow corridor of the Pacific Ocean, as North America is watching the skies, when the shadow of the Moon’s ascending node (where the orbit of the satellite intersects the plane of the solar ecliptic from our perspective) obscured the Sun, crossing the international dateline and beginning on the ninth and ending on this day in 1995, this relatively rare hybrid eclipse with phases of the complete and the annular (when the lunar disc does not quite obscure the sun) as it progressed across the globe. Observers in extreme northwestern South American, Central America and the Caribbean were afforded near totality.