These cookies would be perfect for a graduation celebration! Beth Jackson Klosterboer molded these mortarboard caps around the undersides of a muffin pan. She stuffed them with M&Ms and made tassels with white modeling chocolate.
Japanese latte artist Nowtoo Sugi uses syrup to add vibrant colors to his lattes pictures. I'm especially impressed by the detail in his depiction of Iron Man.
At the link, you can see more photos of his lattes as well as two videos showing Mr. Sugi at work.
Cloning technology may permit scientists to revive extinct species. The writers of Mother Jones contemplated which species they'd like to bring back from the dead. Maddie Oatman proposes the saber-toothed tiger:
The saber-toothed tiger was a compact killing machine, chasing small mammoths, giant sloths, and bison all over North America until about 10,000 years ago when it and many other species mysteriously died out at the end of the last Ice Age. Its genus name, smilodon, comprises the Greek words for "chisel" and "tooth," though the modern lion's bite is probably three times as strong as old smilodon's.
Can we bring it back? About 2,000 saber-toothed fossils have emerged from the La Brea tar pits in Southern California—it's the state fossil—and, being around 10,000 years old, they likely contain recoverable DNA. But so far, no scientists have actually attempted to recreate it.
What species would you like to revive?
Questioning your existence? Doubting the reality of transcendent meaning? Randy Sarafan has designed a phone for your needs:
The way that it works is that when you pick up the handset, the telephone makes a call using a custom cellular module to a list of predefined phone numbers. Whether the phone calls a list of people you know, a list of people you don't know, or randomly dials strangers in your area code, is really up to you. Alternately, the number can be distributed to people with existential emergencies and they can dial in for others to answer.
You can find building instructions and process photos at the link.
Michael Abrahamson makes amazing balloon sculptures. Browse his gallery to see startlingly realistic motorcycles, cartoon characters and even a full-sized couch that can support the weight of three adults. My favorite, though, is this xenomorph chilling at a pub.
Many tunnels in Sydney, Australia aren't tall enough to permit tractor trailers to move through safely. This animated gif shows a warning system that informs truck drivers when they're about to crash into a tunnel entrance. When sensors detect a vehicle that is too tall, the system pours water across the entrance to the tunnel and projects a stop sign onto that water curtain.
It's never occurred to me that tea could be a pie flavor, but it has to Sarah Baird, a writer and cook in New Orleans. Her pie filling recipe includes ground cloves, cardamom, ginger, cinnamon and the contents of chai tea bags.
(Photo: Sarah Baird)
When we last saw master bladesmith Tony Swatton, he made a fully functional axe modeled after Gimli's from The Lord of the Rings. Most recently, he created a battle-ready version of the bat'leth, a sword from Star Trek. Qapla'! His tempered steel sword is ready to sever Jem'Hadar heads.
At the link, you can watch a video of Mr. Swatton making the sword. Be sure to watch until the end, which shows his assistants attacking targets with the bat'leth.
Got a beard? Then you've got potential ad space to rent! Cornett-IMS, an ad agency in Kentucky, came up the idea. It has already leased billboard space to the restaurant company A&W:
At least, that’s what A&W was thinking when they signed up with a Kentucky-based agency to create “beardboards.” According to Biz Insider, the “half-joke, half genius” scheme involves paying men with beards $5 a day to walk around with a mini ad clipped to their facial hair.
“We’re getting a ton of emails from guys with epic beards that want to host beardboards and we’re actually in talks with some brands that want to be Beardvertisers. I think we’ll probably be seeing some beardboards in the wild before too long,” said agency Cornett-IMS’s Whit Hiler.
The Chesapeake blue crab is a symbol of Maryland, so in 1984, Baltimore artist Jackie Leatherbury Douglass made this enormous sculpture of that creature. A Baltimore Sun article from 2000 describes it:
The county, wanting an eye-catching tourism display, commissioned the crab's creation more than 15 years ago, from Shadyside artist Jackie Leatherbury Douglass and her husband, John.
Originally, Jackie Douglass recalls, "they wanted a 30-foot crab, which was just impossible." The three-dimensional, 10-by-7-by-5 1/2 - foot blue crab they settled on took the Douglasses more than 5,500 hours to assemble, with John welding the steel frame and Jackie performing the stained-glass work.
The result was more than just a fitting icon for Anne Arundel County, with 550 miles of heavily crabbed waterfront, and a capital city known as Crabtowne, and a newspaper nicknamed the Crab- wrapper.
(Photos: Elvert Barnes)
The diet can wait until...well, let's not kid ourselves.
Sarah J. Gim used already made glazed donuts and slow churn ice cream to make the sandwiches. She froze them, then dipped them in melted chocolate and served them to undoubtedly thankful people. You can find process photos and her recipe at the link.
No, Doctor, I'm not going to lecture you on where to park your TARDIS. You can disregard my advice. But let's make sure that we lock the door when we leave.
-via Nerd Approved
In the Nineteenth Century, artisans in Eastern Europe made amazing smoking pipes out of meerschaum, a soft mineral. Roy Ricketts has assembled a collection of outstanding examples of this crafting tradition. Ben Marks of Collectors' Weekly explains why craftsmen used meerschaum:
Meerschaum is a relatively new material to pipe making, appearing no earlier than the 18th century. Found primarily in and around the city of Eskişehir in western Turkey, meerschaum is a porous mineral that’s soft enough to be carved but hard enough to be polished, revealing the carver’s artistry. Unlike hardwood briar pipes, which are also finely carved, meerschaum does not burn, which means the bowl is cool to the touch when it’s being smoked and the pipe material imparts no flavor to the tobacco. And because meerschaum is porous, meerschaum pipes change color over time as they are smoked. Thus, the stone, which is carved white, turns butterscotch brown when made into a pipe, filled with tobacco, and smoked, a process that’s frequently hurried along by rubbing a finished pipe with beeswax and, occasionally, ox blood.
At the link, you can see more photos of pipes in Mr. Ricketts's collection.
You could just say out loud "Happy birthday!" or "You're fired!", but creative people find different ways of communicating. Victoria Hudgins shows you how, step by step, to bake your special message to a special someone inside a cake.
You got your diploma/degree! Congratulations!
Grant Snider of Incidental Comics has nothing specific to recommend, but he proposes a good mindset for graduates to keep.
Seulbi Kim, a student at the Rhode Island School of Design, offers this one-handed solution to transporting food from your local burger joint. She writes:
The carrier will reduce the volume by about 50% compared to that today because I tried to simplify the design and minimize the amount of paper used with a hook for French fries, a sleeve for a burger, and a hole for soda drink, which causes people to carry it easier, and more materials saving. It is one-handed, convenient, practical, and compact, so your hands can be more free by holding all in one.
The mark the 40th anniversary of the release of Cup Noodles's curry flavors, Nissin is releasing a set of little curry-themed model Gundams armed with tea kettles:
The three kits included in the promotion are 1/380 scale, so we're looking at maybe 2.5-3" in height. Included in three different flavors are the RX-78-2 Gundam, Char's Gelgoog and the classic Zaku II. Each of the kits are done in clear plastic and their weapon of choice is a tea kettle. As much as heating water with a beam saber makes sense, the kits will have tea kettles.
(Images: Cup Noodle)
It has taken more than two years of work, but Detroit, the city in which the movie RoboCop takes place, will finally get a statue of its favorite son:
The 10-foot tall statue that pays homage to a crime-fighting cyborg from a 1980s action film based in Detroit has been put together and is ready to head to back to the Motor City. [...]
The fundraising effort to build the monument raised $67,436 through 2,718 backers about two years ago. So far, that funding has been enough to cover the cost of the monument's construction, though organizers have not ruled out the need for an additional round of fundraising or a corporate partnership as the project moves further along.
The effort to build a Robocop statue in Detroit began in 2011 when a Massachusetts resident posted a Twitter message to Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, saying that "Philadelphia has a statue of Rocky & Robocop would kick Rocky's butt. He's a GREAT ambassador for Detroit."
Mayor Bing responded to the Tweet by saying, "There are not any plans to erect a statue to Robocop. Thank you for the suggestion."
(Photo: Imagination Station Detroit)
This hardened criminal was apprehended on Oct. 17, 1893. The nefarious François Bertillon, aged 23 months, was nabbed for "gluttony, nibbling all the pears from a basket."
Parents of toddlers: you know how to use this photo. Keep it handy.
(Photo: Metropolitan Museum of Art)
The brother and sister cooking duo Bob and Carlene Deutscher prepared a luxurious Mother's Day breakfast. Their crêpe batter contains cocoa and apple cider and the filling has strawberries and heavy cream. This is how breakfast should be on every day of the week!
Allegedly, this photo was shot in an Uwajimaya, an Asian grocery store chain in Seattle. I think I'll try something safer, such as the chicken.
According to several redditors, this photo shows how many people in India queue: very close together. Redditor iwsfutcmd shares a story:
This was a problem when I was travelling in India.
I'm very understanding of other cultures' ideas about personal space and whatnot, but there's a logistical problem:
I'm standing in line for a train ticket, wearing my huge traveller's backpack that's about 3/4 my size. I'm pressed up against the man in front of me (as custom dictates). Man behind me is pressed up against my backpack (again, as custom dictates). I turn sideways to look at something, man behind me moves forward to close the gap made by my backpack vacating precious line space (as custom dictates).
I turn back to how I was, accidentally smashing man behind me with 25 kilos of pain.
"Oh my god, jesus, I'm sorry!"
I turn to help him up, and as I do so, men in line fill gap left by my backpack.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
A 2010 New York Times article describes queuing practice in India:
There is a feline quality to standing in Indian lines. Certain parts of the man behind you — you don’t know which — brush against you in a kind of public square spooning, the better to repel cutters. (Women do less touching.) Still, this is no deterrent to cutters. They hover near the line’s middle, holding papers, looking lost in a practiced way, then slip in somewhere close to the front. When confronted, their refrain is predictable: “Oh, I didn’t see the line.”
But in a churning India, the line has new resilience. Businesses are becoming vigilant about enforcing queues, and a growing middle class, more well-off and less survivalist, is often less eager to cut. In this way, India’s experience seems to feed into a tradition of seeing line etiquette as a marker of modernity, of graduating from chaos to order, whims to rules, brutality to gentility, scarcity to abundance.
What queuing customs have you encountered?
The best part of last night's episode of Downton Thrones was when Dexter fused with the TARDIS. RT if you agree!
Oh, you haven't seen it yet? Sorry for the spoilers. But now there's an app for that:
Lamere is a 17-year-old high schooler who has developed a browser plug-in that will block tweets with TV spoilers.
Twivo, a plug-in for Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox browsers that will be available to everyone in a few weeks, blocks tweets if it detects keywords that may reveal important details about a show users may want to watch.
After installing Twivo, users activate the plugin whenever one of their shows is going to come on. They also designate keywords, or tags, to tell Twivo which tweets to block. For example, a user could decide to block tweets that include a show's name, characters' names or even the names of the actors.
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