Alex Santoso's Blog Posts

Gas Powered Blender.

So, you're out in the boonies and you're jonesin' for some nice cold, blended margarita. What to do, what to do? Just pull out the gas-powered blender and you're good to go!

The maker phinch wrote:

You'll need a gas powered weed wacker type trimmer. If you use an electric trimmer, you've pretty much missed the point of this project.

Of course, I'm still working on how to make ice without electricity.

Link - via Make

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New T-Shirts from the NeatoShop:

Driv-e-mocion: the High Tech Thank You Wave (Or Not).

This ingenious device "helps you improve communication with other drivers and express yourself" said the maker. This means you can say thanks to the driver who let you into his lane, or flip a high-tech finger to someone behind you - all with a flick of a button.

Just remember this: a high-tech flip-off may result in a primitive road rage response of running you off the road.

Link - via Gizmodo and SciFi Tech

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Homeless Blogging.

From the website:

Happy Ivy doesn't have a bathroom or a kitchen in the bus he calls home. He does, however, have a video-editing station.

Living in a squalid, Woodstock-style bus parked in a Fillmore, California, orange grove, the 53-year-old homeless man charges a power generator from a utility shed and uses Wi-Fi from a nearby access point. From this humble camp, he's managed to run a 'round-the-clock internet television studio, organize grassroots political efforts, record a full-length album and write his autobiography, all while subsisting on oranges and avocados.

Apparently, the Net is more important for the homeless than ever before:

Many of those now living without a permanent roof over their heads have cell phones in their pockets or laptop computers at their hips. While people living in shelters and alleys have found it difficult to cross social divides, the digital divide seems to disappear on the streets. Nearly all homeless people have e-mail addresses, according to Michael Stoops, director of the National Coalition for the Homeless. "More have e-mail than have post office boxes," Stoops said. "The internet has been a big boon to the homeless."

A very interesting Wired article: Link | AboutUsNow website - via Boing Boing

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Where the Heck is Matt?

Matt Harding got the travel bug - and boy, did he travel. And danced. Badly. Well, anyhow, we think it's some form of dancing ...

In February of 2003, [Matt]quit his job in Brisbane, Australia and used the money he'd saved to wander around the planet until it ran out.

A few months into his trip, a travel buddy gave Matt the idea of dancing everywhere he went and recording it on his camera. This turned out to be a very good idea. Now Matt is quasi-famous as "That guy who dances on the internet.No, not that guy. The other one.No, not him either. I'll send you the link. It's funny."

The response to the first video brought Matt to the attention of the nice people at Stride long-lasting gum. They asked Matt if he'd be interested in taking another trip around the world to make a new video. Matt asked if they'd be paying for it. They said yes. Matt thought this sounded like another very good idea.

At the start of 2006, Matt left on a 6 month trip through 39 countries on all 7 continents. In that time, he danced a great deal.

Hit play to see some of the cool places he's been or go to Link [YouTube]. My favorite is when he danced on Kjeragbolten. Don't forget to visit his website: WheretheHellisMatt - Thanks Martin Lopez!

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The Reverse Goldilocks Story.

It's like the nursery rhyme Goldilocks, but in reverse: a woman in West Vancouver came home to find a bear eating oatmeal in her kitchen!

"It appeared to be a one to two-year-old bear - a juvenile - within the kitchen enjoying some oatmeal it had obtained by breaking a ceramic food container," Sgt Skelton said.

But the bear paid scant attention as police arrived on the scene, and continued tucking in with little sign of fear or remorse.

"The bear didn't appear to be aggressive and wasn't destroying the house, so they just let it do what it was doing.

"Eventually the bear decided to make its way out of the residence and down toward a forested gully," Sgt Skelton said.


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Yard Sale Addict's Blog.

Tom Zarrilli is a yard sale addict. He has spent nearly every saturday morning for the last 20 years going to yard sale in various neighborhoods in Atlanta (he rarely buys anything, but he always goes!) And he's got photos and a blog to prove it!

The photo above is from a yard sale in Lake Claire [wiki], Atlanta, where interestingly enough, there never was an actual lake there. It's telling, don't you think: a wax candle of Lenin, bunnies, and a Michael Moore's Fahrenheit 9/11 DVD!

Tom's blog: Link - via Extreme Craft

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Attache Game.

The object of this game called Attache by Gorillaz is to pack your suitcase with all the objects given. Finally, all that tetris-skill can come in handy!

Link - via MissCellania

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Rare Rainbow over Idaho.

A rare, beautiful rainbow (called a circumhorizontal arc) was spotted over Idaho:

Over the fields of northern Idaho, a rare and beautiful sight could be seen. Known as a circumhorizontal arc, it forms as sunlight is refracted through hexagonal ice crystals in cirrus clouds several kilometres above the ground. Sunlight enters a near-vertical face of each crystal and leaves from a horizontal face at the bottom. "Effectively the crystals act as a 90-degree prism for the passing rays," says Evelyn Hesse of the light-scattering group at the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield, UK.


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Triangle Train.

Does anyone know where this is or what it's all about? Found at - via UniqueDaily

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Bloggers: "We're Sorry, Britney"

In her interview with NBC's Matt Lauer, Britney Spears tearfully complained that the paparazzi made her into an emotional wreck [AOL News].

Bloggers, of course, are sympathetic - see how sorry they are for Britney: Link

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Steven Hilton's Software War Map.

Steven Hilton drew this war map depicting "the epic struggle of Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) against the Empire of Microsoft."

See a larger pic: Link - via floweringmind

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Laurent Blachier's Collage Art.

Laurent made some wonderful collage illustrations of actors, musicians, and politicians: Link - via Drawn!

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Deep Fried Burger.

From the website:

Yes, it's pretty gross. This started out as a dare from a friend on IRC, one I immediately said "OK!" to. It took a few weeks to work up the courage to try. First off, it was surprisingly tasty - everything was kind of nicely nutty, and if I'd had to eat 1/5th of one, that'd be just nice. Something like chocolate mud cake, a little goes a long way. I did eat the whole thing in the end though - it was the heaviest thing I'd ever munched on, and left me unable to each for a good 24 hours afterwards. It was thursday's lunch, and I didn't feel hungry until friday afternoon :).

Link - via Cynical-C

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Cai Guo-Qiang's Explosive Artworks.

Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang has an unusual choice for art medium: gunpowder. The first picture is from an installation called Spider Web, which took place in Hangzhou, China in 2002. The second one, called Red Flag, took place in Warsaw, Poland in 2005.

Plenty more at Guo-Qiang's excellent website: Link | Gallery (the navigation is confounding: try clicking on the blinking squares on the top right corner).

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The Holman House.

Got cliff? Then Durbach Block architects can design a house worthy of the view. This one is the Holman House in Dover Heights, NSW, Australia. The view from the inside is simply fantastic:

Link - via A Welsh View

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Maillardet's Automaton.

In 1928, a broken down and badly burned doll-like machine was delivered to the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. When the institute's machinist finished his repairs, the automaton came to life:

When the repairs were completed and the driving motors were set in motion, the Automaton came to life. It lowered its head, positioned its pen, and began to produce elaborate sketches. Four drawings and three poems later, in the border surrounding the final poem, the Automaton clearly wrote, "Ecrit par L'Automate de Maillardet." This translates to "Written by the Automaton of Maillardet." Amazingly, the first clue of the true history and identity of the machine had come from its own mechanical memory!

Link - via Kircher Society

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Pluto's New Posse: Nix and Hydra.

The International Astronomical Union made it official: Pluto's got two new moons named Nix and Hydra.

Until last year, scientists thought Pluto was accompanied by only one moon, Charon. But the Hubble Space Telescope spotted the two satellites more than twice as far away as Charon and many times fainter.

The duo had been known by the tongue-twisting names S/2005 P 2 and S/2005 P 1. Earlier this year, the moons' discoverers, led by Alan Stern of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colo., submitted their choices to the IAU.

The names, with roots in Greek mythology, were selected in part because their first letters, "N" and "H," were a tribute to the New Horizons spacecraft, Stern said Wednesday.


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Aleksandra Mir's Big Umbrella.

Aleksandra's umbrella is big - real big:

The Big Umbrella' is a big umbrella designed to shield a large group of people from the rain. A typical big umbrella can shield approximately 4 tightly squeezed people from the rain. 'The Big Umbrella' is twice as big (240 x 160 cm) as the biggest men's umbrella found on the consumer market and can in turn potentially shield 16 people from the rain.

The Big Umbrella' is constructed by professionals, using typical umbrella industry materials, so to look like and function like a real umbrella. The artist poses with it outdoors in the rain and photographs are taken of the occasion. The project is originally conceived for Paris where it rains a lot. It may involve various queues and promenades with various important landmarks in the background. Other good views include the Metro entrances, where people can stop for a moment to smoke a cigarette or find their wallets.

Link - via Jaf Project

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Lewis the Cat Lives!

Lewis the cat with his owner, Ruth Cisero.

Serial-scratcher Lewis the cat was spared from death and gained fame when he was sentenced to house arrest for attacking his owner's neighbors!

Carroll said Lewis cannot leave the house, even if he gets out accidentally. ...

Janet Kettman, one of Lewis" victims, has previously said she and her neighbors on Sunset Circle are always looking over their shoulders in fear the stalker will strike again.

"He attacks from the back," Kettman said. "You never see it coming. He has six toes on every foot, which constitutes a very formidable weapon."

... "Also, he gives out mixed signals," Kettman continued. "He would sidle against you and purr. You bend down to pet him and he'd attack you."

Link | Lewis the Cat [wiki] - Thanks Tiffany!

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Throwing Money into the Air Throws Town into Chaos.

The town of Aberystwyth, Mid Wales, UK, was thrown into chaos when a man shouted "Who wants free money" and then tossed money into the air.

"I just couldn't believe my eyes," said Mr Morris. "All the money was in £20 notes and I've heard rumours that the man threw about £20,000 away.

"It was like something out of the movies. It caused bedlam - people were on their hands and knees eagerly picking the money up.


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Animal Calligraphy.

In this intricate artform, readable arabic scripts into amazing animal figures. The practice is not new - it dates back to as early as 1458.

This particular one above was made by Hassan Musa, a Sudanese calligrapher.

BibliOdyssey has lots more: Link - via Scribal Terror

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Adopted Woman's Birth Mother is Actually a Co-Worker.

Michelle Wetzell, who was adopted when she was 4-days old, had always wanted to find her birth mother.

She then found out that her birth mother was actually the receptionist at the same salon!

Wetzell, who was adopted when she was 4 days old, wanted to somehow learn her mother’s name and address and mail her a coupon for a free manicure. She wanted to see her mother and learn a little about her, without the threat of awkwardness or rejection.

That was 10 years ago. The memory gives Wetzell chills because of what she learned in February. She found out her mother had been a co-worker at the Davenport salon, working at the receptionist’s desk, just out of earshot of the stylists and manicurists. Her mother was someone she knew and admired.

Link - via Linkfilter

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Self-Pollinating Orchid.

Huang Laiqiang of Tsinghua University discovered that for one type of orchid, "procreating is a lonely affair" - it self-pollinates!

Rather than depending on insects or even the wind for pollination, scientist have discovered that the orchid Holcoglossum amesianum actually fertilizes itself, according to a report in this week's Nature.

The orchid produces no scent or nectar, and the researchers did not see a single instance of pollination by an insect or by wind. Instead, the pollen-bearing anther uncovers itself and rotates into a suitable position to insert into the stigma cavity, where fertilization takes place.

Link | Photo Link

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Laptop Explodes into Flames.

An Inquirer (a tech newsmag, not the tabloid - that's Enquirer) reader snapped this remarkable photo of a laptop computer that suddenly exploded into flames.

It's a good thing the laptop wasn't on someone's lap at the time

Link - via digg and gizmodo

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Oldest Painting of the Western World.

Archaeologists digging an Etruscan tomb near Rome had found the oldest painting of the Western civilization.

Experts could barely contain their excitement as they showed reporters five roaring lions and a flock of waterbirds that have emerged from the ground at the buried Etruscan city of Veio north of Rome.

There are Egyptian paintings older than the ones at Veio - as well as far older cave paintings - but Italian experts believe the new tomb illustrations are the oldest examples of a Western tradition that was then developed by Greece and Rome. Experts say the lions, believed to portray the terrors of the Underworld, and the waterfowl, thought to represent the flight of the prince's soul into the Afterlife, were the finest examples of Etruscan painting from this period.

Link - via Fortrean Times

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Stormtroopers Say: Make or Else!

Rob took some very cool photos from the 2006 Robogames. This one is of Make Magazine's stand, complete with stormtroopers!

Link [flickr] - via Make

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Tree Branch Bike.

Thanks blurb!

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Surrealism Art by Charnine.

This one is titled "Outside" (1998). See more of Charnine's artwork: Link - via Ursi's Blog.

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Bat Learns What to Eat by Eavesdropping on Neighbor.

(Photo: Alexander T. Baugh)

Rachel Page and Mike Ryan of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute on Barro Colorado Island in Panama discovered that the fringe-lipped bat learn of an edible prey by eavesdropping on what their neighbors are eating.

To observe the cultural transmission of this new information in the bats, Page and Ryan captured wild fringe-lipped bats and tested them in large outdoor flight cages. They played the calls of large, poisonous cane toads through speakers and gave the bats that approached the speaker a reward of raw fish. Once a bat learned to associate the cane toad call with food, they became "tutor" bats.

Naïve bats were then allowed to observe the tutor bats. The naïve bats, on average, learned to associate the new frog call with food after observing their tutor five times. Page and Ryan believe the naïve bat observes the tutor's location through echolocation and then listens to it chewing on its prey.

This is the first study to show predators learning socially through acoustic, rather than visual or olfactory, prey cues.

Link - via Nutmeg

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Patricia Chapman's Political Football.

Patricia's artwork includes collages and assemblages from found objects. Many of her work are politically-inspired, and are bound to generate some controversy.

This particular one above is called Political Football, which is captioned "background text is Republican abortion platform".

Link - Thanks Stacia!

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Profile for Alex Santoso

  • Member Since 2012/07/17


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