John Farrier's Liked Blog Posts

Square Roots

(Photo: question_ev3rything)

Redditor question_ev3rything spotted this amazing tree root formation in Guangzhou, China. The persistent tree has pushed its away into the orderly, grid-lined human world.

A very patient artist could use this phenomenon to grow some impressive works of art.

-via Twisted Sifter

View more fun pics over at our NeatoPicto Blog

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This Self-Stabilizing Boat’s Deck Stays Level, Even in Rough Water


(Photo: Josh Valcarcel/Wired)

This is the Martini 1.5, an innovative boat design by Velodyne Marine. As it whips across the waves at high speed, the deck remains level. That's because the Martini has an active suspension system that adjusts as the pontoons rise and fall. The boat can stay level in 5.5-foot waves at speeds of up to 30 MPH. Alex Davies of Wired explains how it works:

Each corner, where the arm meets the hull, has a linear accelerometer, a pneumatic airbag, and a DC servo motor. To match the movement of the ocean, detected by the accelerometer, the motor turns a ball screw that pushes or pulls the control arm, lowering and raising that end of the hull as necessary.

Velodyne is working on a model that will have two larger hulls closer together, but working independently. This will permit the boat to carry a much larger cabin.


(Video Link)


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Pineapple Jack-o'-Lantern

This pineapple looks much more frightening than an ordinary jack-o'-lantern! Cory Doctorow of Boing Boing saw it at a Trader Vic's in Portland, Oregon. It would be great for a Halloween party with a Tiki theme.

-via Make

Love Halloween and cosplay? Check out our Halloween Blog!

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29 Web Ads Ruined by Extremely Unfortunate Placement

Do you trust a computer program to determine where your ad goes online in order to maximize its visability?

Well, considering how many companies have human-generated public relations disasters, maybe it's not a bad idea. Still, sometimes ad placements go over poorly. 22 Words has screenshots of 29 web ad placement failures.

View more fun pics over at our NeatoPicto Blog

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80s Cartoon Villains Dunking on You

Skeletor from He-Man and the Masters of the Universe

Megatron from The Transformers

You have no place on this basketball court. The villains of an 80s childhood will destroy you by dunking over your head, again and again. Andy Kaufman drew these images that let you feel as small as you were back when these cartoons were still new.

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Artist Adds Doodles to Random People

Instagram member geeohsnap is an artist in Norway. He takes pictures of random people that he sees. He then loads those photos into Snapchat and uses doodling tools to add important details, such as animals waiting for public transportation or people playing silly games in public. All of us ordinary people live extraordinary lives in his world.

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5 Book and Pizza Pairings

(Pizza photo: Randy Mayor)

Pizza is fun to eat and heavy literature is, well, good for you in a way. It's the literary equivalent of broccoli. You should eat it. A nice greasy pizza will help you digest the prose.

But which pizza? Martin Cahill of Quick Books has pizza suggestions for 5 classic works of literature, including Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen and Gravity's Rainbow by Thomas Pynchon. For Moby-Dick, Cahill recommends a cheese and anchovy pizza that will remind you of life on the sea.

We could have a lot of fun with this idea using other books, such as E.L. James's Fifty Shades of Grey and Cormac McCarthy's The Road.

-via Adrienne Crezo


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Crash Test Dummies Are Getting Fatter

Obesity is a growing problem in America. As we've noted previously, it affects not just humans, but also America's laboratory animals. Now even crash test dummies used in car safety studies are putting on extra weight. Pictured above is a new dummy designed by Humanetics, a company that specializes in that field. It weighs 273 pounds and has a BMI (body mass index) of 35. CNN reports:

Humanetics are also rolling out their next generation THOR (Test device for Human Occupant Restraint) for median range occupants, with the most advanced sensitivity yet.

"The idea of these new dummies that they start to measure new types of load, (such as) shoulder loads, they interact with restraints better," says Dr. Joel Stitzel, director of the Center for Injury Biomechanics. "They have more measurement capabilities, so they can do a better job of predicting injury."

-via Jalopnik


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Origami Millennium Falcon

Adamite85, an origami artist in the Czech Republic, made a simple but remarkably accurate model of the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars. I wouldn't try the Kessel Run in it, but I'm sure that it would do fine for in-system operations. Either way, if they follow standard Imperial procedure, they'll dump their garbage before they go to light-speed, then we just float away.


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Father and Son MechWarrior Halloween Costume

Geraint is a lucky boy. His father, Ryan, was planning this costume for years before he was born. It’s a Sunder mech from the BattleTech universe. Imgur member PutABowOnIt writes:

My husband had this costume planned for several years, long before we had a child.  The inspiration was a computer game he played in high school.  When we found out we were having a baby, he got to work.  Ryan sketched out the rough designs probably two months before Geraint was born.  With so much baby stuff coming in the mail, we had plenty of boxes for him to work with, so he just had to buy a few things to make it.

The frame is cardboard wrapped around PVC pipe and held in place with zip ties. It’s a flexible form with Velcro keeping the limbs attached at the joints.  The visual details are made of foam board.

-via Tastefully Offensive

Love Halloween and cosplay? Check out our Halloween Blog!

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This Is the Smart Way to Move a Refrigerator


(Photo: New Zealand Herald)

A truck is better. But what if you don’t have a truck? Or even just a length of rope that can be used to tie it to the roof of the car? That’s when you ask a friend to help you—a friend that really loves you, but you regard as a bit expendable.

Police in West Auckland, New Zealand are looking for these two men (presumably there’s someone driving the car) who were spotted transporting a refrigerator on the roof of a Nissan. But rather than congratulating them on their daring, they would like to warn the men that what they did was dangerous. Such spoilsports!

-via Nothing to Do with Aborath


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This Belt is Also a Scooter

Ádám Török, a product designer in Sopron, Hungary, made this scooter for a school graduation project. His premise is that in the future, most vehicles will be portable. This is a flexible form of transportation. If your bus is late, you don’t have to walk to your destination. You can just take off your belt and scoot there. It's made of metal and plywood and weighs less than 4 pounds.

-via Design Boom


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Baby Who Looks Like Elvis Born


(Photo: SWNS)

Has the King been reincarnated? Time will tell as George Georgious of London grows up. When he was born, George had over an inch of hair on his head. When it’s combed, it stands up. He’s also growing sideburns, so this baby looks a lot like Elvis Presley. His mother reports that even strangers point out the resemblance. 


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50 Ways to Cook with Butterfinger Candy Bars

What can you do with Butterfinger candy bars? Besides wolfing them down hungrily, you can cook with them. Christi of the food blog Love from the Oven rounded up 50 great recipes that use Butterfinger candy bars.

Among them is this Butterfinger ice cream cake made by Betsy of JavaCupcake. She made it upon request as her husband’s birthday cake. It’s made of vanilla ice cream, graham crackers, butter, whipping cream, sugar, and, of course, Butterfinger bars.

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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These Goofy Halloween Skeletons Will Make You Shriek in Laughter

Steve Miller and Stacy Adams of Fort Mill, South Carolina own a set of poseable human skeleton replicas. Last year, they started putting them in scenes on the front porch of their home. They call their project the Baxter Skeletons.

The settings are increasingly elaborate, using props, backgrounds, and lights. The skeletons aren't just trying to scare you. They're trying to live normal, fun-filled lives. 

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Love Halloween and cosplay? Check out our Halloween Blog!

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Homeless Man Plays Piano Beautifully


(Video Link)

The City of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, recently put pianos in public spaces for people to play. David Rauch, an urban planner, led the project. He says that the results have been beautiful and fun:

“You just know they’re a total success when you see a homeless guy sit down and play Let It Be for over two hours at a stretch,” he smiles.

“All types of people play all kinds of music,” he says, “children play the A-B-C song, mothers and sons play duets, friends play dueling pianos.

“We’ve had people play wonderful classical virtuosos, and an opera company singing around the piano.”

The above video shows a performance on a piano in Sir Winston Churchill Square. Ryan, the pianist, says that he's been homeless for 30 years. During that time, he's taught himself how to play.

-via 22 Words


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Heather Boggs's The Shining Hats

Heather Boggs of Madision, Wisconsin knits hats with patterns that reflect the costumes and scenery of Stanley Kubrick's iconic horror film The Shining. She does an excellent job of matching wardrobes, carpets, and paint schemes that appear in the Overlook Hotel and the people who survive in it.

Her model doesn't quite have the Sad Etsy Boyfriend look, but his showmanship really brings out the tone of these crafts.

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Town Struggling over Alcohol Prohibition Law Discovers That the Law Doesn't Actually Exist


(That's My Story and I'm Stuck to It t-shirt)

Hanover is a small town south of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. For as long as anyone can remember, it's been a dry town. That means that people aren't allowed to buy or sell alcoholic beverages. Town officials enforced this law, which was not entirely popular.

In 2006, the town held a referendum to repeal the law. By a 30-vote margin, the town upheld the alcohol prohibition statute.

The town held an election last Wednesday. The alcohol law was once again up for referendum. But as they were preparing for the election, town officials discovered an important piece of information: the law didn't exist.

Everyone had assumed that alcohol sales were illegal in the town. But no one could find the actual text of the law. Lawyers poured through records going as far back as 1880 and found no alcohol prohibition law.

-via Weird Universe


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Chocolate Peanut Butter-Filled Pretzels

For a baking contest, Jessie Oleson Moore made preztels filled with a mixture of chocolate and peanut butter. Using a recipe by Elizabeth Bennett, Moore first shaped canned breadstick dough into pretzel forms. She filled these with a combination of peanut butter, cocoa, whipping cream, and egg yolk. Moore then sealed the pretzel forms and baked them to make these delicious-looking snacks.

We dish up more neat food posts at the Neatolicious blog

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Firefighters Rescue a Horse from a Swimming Pool


(Video Link)

Yesterday afternoon, a horse in Mesa, Arizona escaped from its pen and wandered into a swimming pool. It was probably looking for water to drink. The horse was unable to climb out and became stuck.

After a veterinarian tranquilized the horse, firefighters with the Mesa Fire Department rigged a harness around its body and lifted the heavy animal out of the pool. By my count, that's 9 men in the video struggling to pull on the harness.

The horse was, thankfully, uninjured.

Love cute animals? View more at Lifestyles of the Cute and Cuddly blog

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Want to Prove You're a Man? Stick Your Hand into this Glove Filled with Bullet Ants

(Photo: Pennsylvania State University)

A chief of the Sateré-Mawé people put it like this:

If you live your life without suffering anything or without any kind of effort, it won't be worth anything to you.

It's hard to argue to argue against that point of view.

Are you ready to leave aside boyhood and become a man? If you're in the Sateré-Mawé people of the Brazilian Amazon, then you will stick your hands into gloves filled with angry bullet ants and keep them there for 10 minutes.

And you'll do this 20 times.


(Video Link)

The bullet ants (Paraponera clavata) are appropriately named. Each sting is like 30 bee stings. To prepare for the initiation right, the men of the Sateré-Mawé gather them, drug them, then stick the ants into mittens of woven grass.

When the ants awake from their drugged stupor, they're in a foul mood. The boys stick their hands into the mittens and keep them there for about 10 minutes. It hurts a lot. But if they can do this 20 times, the tribe will accept them as men.

(Image: Universal Pictures)

So put your hand in. Remember that fear is the mind-killer. Also horrifically venomous ants.

-via Ace of Spades HQ


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The Awesome Sport of Rototiller Racing


(Photo: PurpleHull Pea Festival)

Do you have a rototiller? How fast does it go? How fast can you make it go?

If you can modify your tiller to go faster than any other and run behind it, holding onto the handlebars, for 200 feet, then you might have what it takes to be a rototiller racer.


(Video Link)

The capital of this sport is Emerson, Arkansas. There, at annual PurpleHull Pea Festival, the champions assemble to find out who is the fastest rototiller racer.

As long as the engine doesn't produce more than 50 horsepower, you can modify your tiller however you wish. Racers must run, not ride, their tillers for the entire race. They have to attach a kill switch to their wrists so that if they lose control of their tillers, they shut off automatically.

Shane Waller of Junction City, Arkansas holds the current record. He tilled the 200-foot field in just 5.59 seconds. That's a speed of about 24 miles per hour.

-via American Digest


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Darth Vader Turned Away from Ukrainian Polls


(Video Link)

For several months, Darth Vader has been running for the President of Ukraine. That's his real, legal name: Darth Alekseyevich Vader. 

He's the nominee of the Internet Party, which is also running candidates for Parliament. Those candidates represent a broad coalition of Imperial and Rebel Alliance leaders, including Yoda, Chewbacca, and Princess Amidala. Lord Vader's campaign has produced high quality campaign commercials, such as the one you see above.


(Photo: Valentyn Ogirenko/Reuters)

Lord Vader has run an active campaign. He often rides a custom-built bus decorated in Imperial motifs through the major cities of Ukraine, delivering speeches.


(Video Link)

Unfortunately for Vader, he was unable to vote. When he approached the polls, an election worker insisted that he remove his helmet to confirm his identity. Lord Vader refused and left (warning: auto-start video).

-via AP


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Things Disney Princesses Do That Would Be Awkward if You Did Them


(Video Link)

You can dress like a Disney Princess for Halloween. But you probably shouldn't act like one. This BuzzFeed video shows how weird it would look if you do what Ariel, Rapunzel, Mulan, and Pocahontas, did in their movies.

Yeah, Snow White's 7 roommates . . . that could be hard to explain. Especially since they all like to gather around her bed and watch her sleep.


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The Soothing Light of the Flickering Computer Monitor

(The Awkward Yeti/Nick Seluk)

The weather is perfect, so let's stay inside! Natural sunlight and unconditioned air have a certain appeal, but it's hard to watch Netflix from outside and I have to keep careful track of how many people have liked my status update.


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All of the Planets in Our Solar System Would Fit in between the Earth and Its Moon

If you lined up all of the planets in our solar system with the exception of Pluto, they would fit neatly between the Earth and the Moon with only about 2,729 miles to spare.

Redditor CapnTrip made this illustration of this fascinating fact. Frasier Cain of io9 came up with slightly different numbers from NASA, but found that CapnTrip was mostly correct.

Add in Pluto and the number drops to about 1,299 miles.


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For Sale: A Ghost Town in Connecticut


(Photo: RM Bradley, The Courant)

Johnsonville is a village in East Haddam, Connecticut. It used to be a small milltown until the 1970s, when a fire gutted the local economy. The owner, Raymond Schmitt, was an eccentric businessman in the aerospace industry. After the fire, he announced his intention to turn it into a tourist attraction.

Schmitt moved quaint, turn-of-the-century buildings from elsewhere in New England to Johnsonville. He envisioned it as a place where visitors could step back in time.

(Photo: DamnedCT)

The tourist town was never a financial success and, in 1994, after a dispute with the local government, Schmitt closed it. He died 4 years later. Now the current owners are selling off Johnsonville.

Would you like to own a ghost town? It's 52 acres of land and a 15-acre pond. There are a dozen buildings and a private waterfall. The opening bid is $800,000.


(Video Link)

If you watched MTV during the 90s, you may have already seen Johnsonville. Billy Joel filmed part of the music video for his song "River of Dreams" there.

-via Messy Nessy Chic


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10 Massive Monuments Carved into Living Rock


(Photo: Austin Donisan)

This enormous sculpture reminiscent of the giant stone head from the movie Zardoz is a monument to Decebalus, the last king of Dacia before its conquest by the Roman Empire in 106 A.D. Dacia is the area now known as Romania (for the Romans thoroughly Romanized it) and Decebalus is a symbol of national identity to modern Romanians.

For 10 years, starting in 1994, stone carvers climbed a boulder along the Iron Gates, a gorge along the Danube near the Romanian-Serbian border. The face is 141 feet tall and 82 feet wide. Here, King Decebalus stands once again to resist foreign invasions of the Romanian homeland.

This is one of 10 incredible monuments and buildings carved into rock rounded up by Kuriositas. You can view them all here.


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Baku Maeda's Leaf Beasts

Baku Maeda is an artist in Sapporo, Japan. We've previously featured his animal sculptures made of fabric ribbons. They show how gifted he is at creating vivid impressions of animals using minimal forms.

He's been doing the same thing with leaves. With just a few alterations, his Japanese Bigleaf Magnolia tree leaves turn into animals of the autumn forest. You can see more of them here.

-via Lustik


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Bike-Mounted Bottle System Condenses Humid Air into Drinking Water

Kristof Retezár, an industrial designer in Austria, designed this clever gadget called Fontus. When it's humid, the system draws water out of the air and pours it into a water bottle. It mounts on a bike frame, so if you're biking in swampy weather, you could use it to supplement your water supply.

Solar cells power the unit, which cools the top and heats the bottom. Perforated walls inside collect moisture, which flows down a tube into the bottle. It can produce roughly one drop of water per minute.


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Profile for John Farrier

  • Member Since 2012/08/04


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