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March 28, 2010

Anna Kendrick — before she got big

Who knew?

Long before she arrived big-time with her scintillating performance in "Up In The Air," she was a child star and singing sensation, above at age 13 in a 1998 performance at Carnegie Hall, belting out a spirited rendition of "Show Boat's" "Life Upon the Wicked Stage" alongside The Kit Kat Girls in a "Cabaret" revival.

March 28, 2010 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

MLB logo is genius

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It came out in 1968 but it wasn't until last night that the penny dropped and I realized that the batter [above] could be either left- or right-handed.

I love visual tricks that take decades to become evident.

Hats off to the designer, Jerry Dior.

March 28, 2010 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Sandwich on Rye

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Desktop accessory

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designed by

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Haruka Nakai.

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¥3,000-¥3,150.

[via noquedanblogs and Spoon & Tamago]

March 28, 2010 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Self-fusing silicone rescue tape

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Highly praised by Sean Ragan in a review in the latest issue (volume 21) of Make magazine, as follows:

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Silicone Rescue Tape

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In case the advent of plastic bakeware wasn't enough to convince you of the wonder of silicone polymers, I relate the following tale. Shortly after moving into my current home, an air conditioner drain line in the attic sprang a leak, and water started dribbling through the ceiling. The proper fix would have been to cut out the leaking section of pipe and replace it, a task I was not looking forward to in the Texas summer heat. After complaining to a fellow chemist, he suggested I try silicone tape as a temporary fix.

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Four years later, that "temporary" repair, which took all of 45 seconds to complete, is still going strong. Apart from a bit of dust, there's no sign of degradation in the tape, and I'll be surprised if it doesn't make it another four years at least.

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Rescue tape comes in relatively short rolls, which is necessary because it's about 1mm thick and requires backing on both sides to keep it from sticking to itself, which it does almost instantly. If you wait a minute or so and then try to pull the bond apart, the tape itself will fail before the joint does. It's soft and flexible and highly resistant to heat, cold, water, and oil, and it can be used on any kind of material, clean or dirty.

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12-foot-long x 1-inch-wide roll in a variety of colors: $9.95.

March 28, 2010 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tactile Gaming Vest

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Anne-Marie Corley's March 26, 2010 IEEE Spectrum website story has the details, and follows.

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Tactile Gaming Vest Punches and Slices

“Ouch! That hurt!”

So exclaimed one user of the University of Pennsylvania’s Tactile Gaming Vest (TGV) during yesterday’s demos at the IEEE Haptics Symposium, in Waltham, Mass.

As conference participants steered their character in a shoot-em-up computer video game based on Half-Life 2, the vest variously smacked them and vibrated as they themselves got shot. Sometimes it smarted, depending on how tight the vest was on the user, or if the “shots” hit right on the collar bone. For me it was more like a series of surprise punches.

Four solenoid actuators in the chest and shoulders in front, plus two solenoids in the back, give you the feeling of a gunshot, says Saurabh Palan, a graduate student who works on the project. In addition, vibrating eccentric-mass motors clustered against the shoulder blades make you feel a slashing effect as you get stabbed from behind. Currently there is no feedback from your own weapons as you fire, just from weapons aimed at you. 

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The solenoids and shoulder vibrators are controlled by custom electronics and linked to the game, so if your character gets shot from a certain direction, the appropriate solenoid “fires.” That makes it better than, say, laser tag, which makes your whole vest vibrate but doesn’t give you a hint as to where the shot came from. In that sense, then, the gaming vest is closer to a paintball excursion, but it doesn’t hurt as much (and there’s no messy paint to clean up afterwards).

Other tactile vests adorn the research sphere, but this one uses solenoids for their fast response, Palan explains. A similar vest, using pneumatics, has a slower response time, he says. Plus, it requires a huge air tank that sits next to you on the table, which makes a lot of noise and can be annoying, he adds.

Palan says this kind of device could be helpful for training military teams, in addition to making video gaming more immersive. Or it could make movies like Avatar even more enjoyable to watch, because you get physical feedback in addition to the 3D image experience.

It could also be fun for straight up action thrillers like Die Hard. If this kind of vest could be linked to the movie while you watch it, Palan says, the experience would be that much more exciting. “You could feel like you’re in the role,” he says. “So every time Bruce Willis gets shot, you feel it.”

Yippee ki yay.

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[via ubergizmo]

March 28, 2010 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Sign of the times

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[via Dahlia Rideout and divine caroline]

March 28, 2010 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Paper Dove

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"Handmade dove created from recycled, found and purchased papers. 

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Free-standing and approximately 

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10 cm (4") in length."

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$17.

[via boxbank+]

March 28, 2010 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

What is it?

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Answer here this time tomorrow.

March 28, 2010 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Clean Your Mind — Device Jewel

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Created

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by

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Ana Cardim.

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Instructions:

1. Pull the hygienic paper and break it in the desired measure.

2. Write on the paper a problem or personal worry.

3. Concentrate and visualize that the problem is not going to worry you any more.

4. Throw the paper inside a toilet.

5. It is natural that you experience a sensation of relief: enjoy the moment.

6. Repeat the entire process as many times as you need.

7. Keep your mind clean and try not to accumulate new problems.

Video demonstration here.

March 28, 2010 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

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