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April 18, 2011

How to make a miniature book



Just follow the steps above.

[via Milena]

April 18, 2011 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Book Bed — Now you can curl up IN a good book


Created by Japanese artist Yusuke Suzuki using sheets for the pages and pillows for bookmarks.


[via NeatoramaDoobybrainfubiz and Flavorwire]

April 18, 2011 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Beware of hungry judges


From this past weekend's Wall Street Journal: "A study of parole decisions in Israel indicates that if the judge hadn't taken a food break recently, the petitioner stood a greater chance of losing.

"Researchers looked at 1,112 rulings involving requests for parole (or for changes of incarceration terms) presented to eight judges. They heard cases daily, interrupting for a morning snack and lunch.

"The odds of an inmate receiving a favorable decision started at 65%, first thing in the morning, then steadily dropped until the snack break. If the judge heard eight cases in the morning, the average success rate for the last one was 25%. If the judge heard 12 cases, the average success rate for the final one was 0%. Favorable rulings popped back up to 65% when the judge returned, then slid again until lunchtime. The same pattern appeared post-lunch.

"The authors could find no other factors that might explain the pattern beyond the hearing's timing, relative to the food breaks. They had no direct measure of the judges' mood."

Below, the abstract of the paper, published in the April 12, 2011 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


Extraneous factors in judicial decisions

Are judicial rulings based solely on laws and facts? Legal formalism holds that judges apply legal reasons to the facts of a case in a rational, mechanical, and deliberative manner. In contrast, legal realists argue that the rational application of legal reasons does not sufficiently explain the decisions of judges and that psychological, political, and social factors influence judicial rulings. We test the common caricature of realism that justice is “what the judge ate for breakfast” in sequential parole decisions made by experienced judges. We record the judges’ two daily food breaks, which result in segmenting the deliberations of the day into three distinct “decision sessions.” We find that the percentage of favorable rulings drops gradually from ≈65% to nearly zero within each decision session and returns abruptly to ≈65% after a break. Our findings suggest that judicial rulings can be swayed by extraneous variables that should have no bearing on legal decisions.

April 18, 2011 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Vat-grown clothing — Just add bacteria to sugared tea


From the Wall Street Journal:


"Since 2004, the BioCouture research project in London has been working to develop an eco-friendly plant-based material — grown in a tea-and-sugar solution [above] using harmless bacteria and cellulose fibers — that can be used as clothing. The material can be cut, dyed and sewn (as in the jacket pictured here), and at the end of its useful life, the garment can be composted."


April 18, 2011 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Holding your breath? There's an app for that



Not only does it exist, but Breath Hold is up to Version 1.7.

From the app's self-description: "Are you a water sports enthusiast? Do you wish you could hold your breath longer? The ability to hold your breath for long periods of time can come in handy whether you are a freediver, surfer, kayaker, or other water-sports enthusiast. One way to increase the maximum amount of time that you can hold your breath is through the use of breath hold tables. The Breath Hold app puts the power of breath hold table workouts conveniently on your iPhone/iPod Touch. At the very least, you will be able to impress your friends with how long you can hold your breath!"



I happened on the existence of this app via a parenthetical aside in a most interesting article in yesterday's New York Times about the increasingly popular extreme sport of freediving, "in which competitors see how deep they can go on a single breath without benefit of a breathing apparatus."

At Vertical Blue 2011, an annual freediving invitational that ends today, William Trubridge, a 30-year-old freediver and trainer from New Zealand, set a new world record by diving to a depth of 121 meters (nearly 400 feet, the equivalent of a 40-story-building), returning to the surface after holding his breath for 4 minutes 13 seconds.

April 18, 2011 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Moleskine Bags — Travelling Collection


From Michael Hsu's April 16, 2011 Wall Street Journal review: "It wasn't long ago that our containers were more open-ended, made to hold anything, rather than specific things. A bag was a bag, rather than a laptop bag. A case for a cellphone held most phones, not just the current generation's. The new line of city-friendly bags introduced in Milan earlier this week by Moleskine—a company best known for its impeccably simple notebooks—is a return to that open-endedness of yesteryear, meeting the needs of the technology-laden professional without writing off mankind's centuries-old relationship with paper.

"The messenger bag, for example, has an interior dividing panel (documents on one side; laptop on the other, perhaps) to which smaller pouches can be attached—perfect for cellphone chargers and notepads. Its cover flap folds to create a loop for quick access to a newspaper (quaint) or an umbrella.

"And keeping with the Moleskine aesthetic, the superfluous has been eliminated, or at least hidden: The plastic buckle used to adjust the length of the shoulder strap is neatly tucked out of view. Not surprisingly, the bags have a lot in common with a blank notebook, that sublime container of possibility, proving yet again that the empty is infinitely more useful than the prescribed."


The bags and accessories run $9.95 to $149.95.

Real soon now.


April 18, 2011 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

MorphWorld: "Sybil Temtchine, a dead ringer for Sarah Silverman"


So wrote Jeannette Catsoulis in an April 14, 2011 New York Times review of "Footprints," starring Ms. Temtchine as a young woman who wakes up with amnesia face down on the sidewalk in front of Grauman's Chinese Theater and spends the day from sunrise to sunset entirely on Hollywood Boulevard, trying to figure out who she is.


I see the resemblance.


For those with a prosopagnosia variant, that's Ms. Temtchine up top and Ms. Silverman in the second photo.

April 18, 2011 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Paper Chair — Mathias Bengtsson


"The Danish designer... used thousands of sheets of recycled paper — glued together under heat and high pressure, without a frame, joint or screws — to create this... chair." 


[via the Wall Street Journal ]

April 18, 2011 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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