Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Sad infographic about the state of the rhino. Although, it must be said, also not very clear. The static version (found here) is no better. Why they're overlaying dark gray on light is beyond me. But still...stupid urban legend-driven prices for rhino horn are nothing short of tragic.
  2. Great summary of China's foreign policy and prospects. Via The Browser.
  3. Oy. Via Marginal Revolution.
  4. Daily Show making fun of itself
  5. An extremely compelling argument to send a man to Mars. I mean extremely compelling. Seriously.
  6. Beautiful ad for Nokia from all over the interwebs today.
    Splitscreen: A Love Story from JW Griffiths on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Good history of coffee and its effects. Via Gizmodo.
  2. Where HAVE all the girls gone?
  3. Interesting read from one of the fathers of a Gizmodo editor of all people. Goes to show that any life is interesting. (Or maybe...that our fathers had way more interesting lives than us.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. One woman's explanation for why she's joining another flotilla aimed at the Gaza blockade. A clear reminder that, for all the obfuscating politics of our world, right and wrong can be, and often are, simple choices. Via The Browser. Her full account can be found on her blog.
  2. Another summary of North Korea's nuclear ambitions.
  3. According to one think-tank's algorithm, China is the most pregnant for revolution in 2011.
  4. Amazing tribute to Terminator 2 on its 20th anniversary.  Via Gizmodo.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Monday, June 20, 2011

X-Men: First Class Review

To call X-Men: First Class a disappointment is not being fair. It is leaps and bounds ahead of the last two X-Men movies: The Last Stand and Wolverine. It is tightly directed, reasonably well-acted, and decently exciting. By any normal metric, a 'disappointment' is not the correct term for this movie.

However, I have insider information. I know some backstory to the various permutations of the X-Men intellectual property. And this background makes First Class almost unbearable to watch. It is a Frankenstein of a movie with stitches so indelicately sewing it together that I am shocked there aren't more reviewers crying foul.

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Comparing North Korea with the Soviet Union. Via North Korean Economy Watch.
  2. Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Soviet Union. On the ground accounts from the people who were there, retrospectives digging into the intangibles that sparked the revolution, and what the fall initially meant for dictators the world over compared to China's template today.
  3. Visualizing our fuel reserves. Made for GE by Information is Beautiful.
  4. Fukashima is worse than our short-attention spans would like to believe

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Analysis of Washington's North Korean policies.
  2. YouTube Doubler. The link is to my following the advice found in the comments to the Assassin's Creed Brotherhood trailer. Make sure to mute the left video.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Two different views of the Republican primaries in New Hampshire. One takes them somewhat seriously, questioning whether the Republican Party is putting its George Bush years of Foreign Policy behind it. The other...well...the other's a clip from The Daily Show so you take a wild guess.
  2. An amazing series of photos of Russia's disparity, framed through the lens of their car culture.
  3. Terrifying portents of the future. Via, where else, Gizmodo.
  4. We've been Sean Bean fans since GoldenEye but getting stabbed and then ordering another pint raises our admiration to a whole new level.
  5. The true purpose of our higher faculties

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Compelling re-review of Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Via Marginal Revolution.
  2. Also from Marginal Revolution, Bitcoin's first dip and an ominous potent for where we assume currency is heading in the future.
  3. Conan gives a great commencement address for Dartmouth.


Foreign Policy has an article discussing the legality of targeting Qaddafi, begging the question: why aren't leaders targeted more frequently?

The article shrewdly points out that no leader is particularly interested in crossing that line, leading, as it would, to reprisals and increasing the threat felt by all leaders. But pop culture and entertainment (and, depending on how far into conspiracy theories one ventures, history) is full of stories of shadowy organizations and figures who play the game of diplomacy using rather direct measures. The term 'assassin' itself is derived from the Arabic term hashishi, roughly translated to 'rabble'. It was adopted to describe the first group of assassins, famously lead by Hasan-i Sabbah, or The Old Man of the Mountain.

Monday, June 13, 2011

A few funny things

  1. This is funny
  2. This is interesting.
Good night.

The Tyler Cowen

  1. Adjacencies and the 9/11 memorial. I wish I had this program back two years ago when I needed to create a matrix to satisfy just two requirements. Via Infosthetics.
  2. Haunting footage of Japan's wreckage, albeit with an epically poetic news anchor narrating. Via Gizmodo.
  3. Though this is a few days old, it's a great video. Humor makes political statements so much more effective.

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Tyler Cowen

  1. getting us to do their work them. Thankfully, their work is really cool. Via Infosthetics.
  2. The future, via Gizmodo. I'm saving up for this bad boy if he can get some decent gyroscopes to keep me from flipping over.
  3. Depressing but unavoidable realities of humanitarian aid and the numbers they use to ask for support.
  4. Two amazing videos from Gizmodo. One of base-jumping (it's a watch ad yes, but still breathtaking), the other of a funny, scary TED Talk. (Second is after the break.)

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Are covers cool? Some people think yes, some think no, some think only if the band puts their unique stamp on the song, others think only if the band does a faithful recreation. I think covers are cool in any regard, particularly this one:

The Tyler Cowen

  1. A photo essay on North Korea and an accompanying article about the unlikelihood of its imminent collapse.
  2. Music video. Via Infosthetics.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Motion Control

We're pretty tired right now so this might not be the most focused post, but after watching the entirety of Microsoft's event at E3, the cringe-inducing awkward ants are crawling all over my skin. Some of the worst offenders:

Friday, June 3, 2011

Thursday, June 2, 2011

A good idea

We love us some time-lapse video here at Bag of Hammers. Our swiftly tilting planet surely is a thing of beauty. However, particularly as with night time-elapse videos like the one below, the effect is Earth-centric. The frame makes the mountain ranges and telescopes stationary while the stars dance and wheel above us. I would love to see someone figure out how to make the stars stationary while the Earth in the foreground circles around. While everything is relative, it would be an interesting perspective that would highlight our movement through the cosmos. Imagine the scene at 4:06 with the mountains twisting around in the foreground.

Via The Awesomer.