Fascinating talk by George Whitesides.
While President Obama was justifiably mocked by the Onion (and others) for his use of a teleprompter in a grade six classroom, the following video demonstrates that he can more than hold his own without a script. Skip to 19:10 to see President Obama take an hour of questions. The second video is the complete, unedited video of Jon Stewart being interviewed by Bill O'Reilly, showing that he too can more than hold his own without a script.
hat tip MattMason
George Boldt built this castle estate on Heart Island, New York for his wife Louise. Unfortunately, she died a year before the estate was completed. Boldt halted construction and never returned to the island.
WebUrbanist - Architectural Love Story: 10 Castles Built for Love
Malachai Nicolle (5 years old) and his brother Ethan Nicolle (29 years old) have created the fantastic comic Axe Cop.
This is an excerpt from a wonderful story by Jerome Weidman entitled The Night I Met Einstein.
When I was a very young man, just beginning to make my way, I was invited to dine at the home of a distinguished New York philanthropist. After dinner our hostess led us to an enormous drawing room. Other guests were pouring in, and my eyes beheld two unnerving sights: servants were arranging small gilt chairs in long, neat rows; and up front, leaning against the wall, were musical instruments. Apparently I was in for an evening of Chamber music.
I use the phrase “in for” because music meant nothing to me. I am almost tone deaf. Only with great effort can I carry the simplest tune, and serious music was to me no more than an arrangement of noises. So I did what I always did when trapped: I sat down and when the music started I fixed my face in what I hoped was an expression of intelligent appreciation, closed my ears from the inside and submerged myself in my own completely irrelevant thoughts.
After a while, becoming aware that the people around me were applauding, I concluded it was safe to unplug my ears. At once I heard a gentle but surprisingly penetrating voice on my right.
“You are fond of Bach?” the voice said.
I knew as much about Bach as I know about nuclear fission. But I did know one of the most famous faces in the world, with the renowned shock of untidy white hair and the ever-present pipe between the teeth. I was sitting next to Albert Einstein.
“Well,” I said uncomfortably, and hesitated. I had been asked a casual question. All I had to do was be I equally casual in my reply. But I could see from the look in my neighbor’s extraordinary eyes that their owner was not merely going through the perfunctory duties of elementary politeness. Regardless of what value I placed on my part in the verbal exchange, to this man his part in it mattered very much. Above all, I could feel that this was a man to whom you did not tell a lie, however small.
“I don’t know anything about Bach,” I said awkwardly. “I’ve never heard any of his music.”
A look of perplexed astonishment washed across Einstein’s mobile face.
“You have never heard Bach?”
He made it sound as though I had said I’d never taken a bath.
“It isn’t that I don’t want to like Bach,” I replied hastily. “It’s just that I’m tone deaf, or almost tone deaf, and I’ve never really heard anybody’s music.”
A look of concern came into the old man’s face. “Please,” he said abruptly, “You will come with me?”
The rest of the story can be found here
hat tip the real cabbie
This infographic shows the advantage of pirating content. Given that DRM is always defeated (usually in short order), all it accomplishes is make life difficult people who purchase content legitimately.
The 2010 Sprite Step Off challenge was won by Zeta Tau Alpha. Stepping is historically rooted in African American fraternities and sororities. However, it appears stepping is going mainstream as Zeta Tau Alpha is a traditionally White sorority.
News One: White Sorority Wins Sprite Step-Off Competition
hat tip Jason Whitlock
hat tip Matt Farina
This cool device takes all the tedious work out of setting up dominoes.
hat tip Gizmodo
What do you do when you're stuck in an empty airport for hours? Video tape yourself goofing around.
hat tip Boing Boing