John Farrier's Blog Posts

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Ballet School for Blind Dancers

(Video Link)

A school in São Paulo, Brazil trains people who are visually impaired -- many completely blind since birth -- to be graceful and coordinated ballet dancers. Fernanda Bianchini opened her school in 1995 and developed an effective way of teaching dance by touch to hundreds of students. A few of her students have even become professional dancers.

-via Oddity Central | Previously: Super Mario Bros. Ballet

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Mountain Dew & Doritos Cupcakes

So let's say that you're a college sophomore and you want to eat a balanced diet from all of the three major college sophomore food groups: Mountain Dew, Doritos, and snack cakes. The problem is that it takes time to acquire and store all three of those items. The solution is to eat a cupcake that combines all three food products! The bakery 4 Rivers Smokehouse in Orlando, Florida has you covered. It also offers Coke and Ruffles cupcakes and Cheerwine cupcakes. Coming soon: Nehi grape soda cupcakes!

Link -via Geekosystem | Official Website | Photo: Katie Quinn/Today Show

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Police Arrest Man Despite His Excellent "Fighting Is What Redneck People Do" Excuse

Although one might think that it would be an ironclad legal defense, police in Martin County, Florida nonetheless arrested a man for getting drunk, shooting his lawnmower in his front yard, and then fighting with his son:

After being cuffed and placed in a cruiser, Wach asked why he was being arrested, according to a Martin County Sheriff's Office report. After being provided with an explanation by a deputy, Wach claimed that he “shoots in the yard all the time.”

And, as for fighting with his 18-year-old son, Wach remarked that, “fighting is what redneck people do.”

Link -via Althouse | Photo (unrelated) by Flickr user toolstop

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Daria Cosplay Nails It

deivantART user SoDespair created a cosplay photo set that mimics the animated TV show Daria perfectly. Daria Morgendorffer, Jane Lane and her brother Trent Lane are caught in their original settings. Trent even has the correct tattoos.

Link -via The Uniblog

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Woman Probably Fails Her Driver's License Test after Driving into the Sea

But I should note that I'm just guessing. The article doesn't actually say that this woman, who was trying to pass a practical test for her driver's license, failed because she ran her car off a pier. Google Translate renders the Spanish-language text as follows:

"The inspector could not stop the march and the truck fell into the sea. The woman was trapped in desperation because you could not get the seat belt," said Requena.

A passerby jumped in and rescued the driver. The inspector swam away from the car and departed the scene without giving notice.

Link (Google Translate) -via Jalopnik | Photo:

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Invincibility Quesadillas

Like in the Super Mario Bros. games, eating these quesadillas will make you temporarily invincible. If you're going to sustain this ability, you have to keep eating them -- as many as necessary so that people start avoiding you. You can find a recipe at the link.

Link -via That's Nerdalicious!

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World's Smallest V-12 Engine Fits in the Palm of Your Hand

(Video Link)

A brilliant machinist named Patelo made this 12cc V-12 compressed air engine. Except for the screws, he cut all of the parts from scratch. This video shows him grinding the parts, assembling them, and then running the engine at about the eight minute mark. It's an amazing demonstration of precise machining.

-via Boing Boing | Previously: Tiny, Functional V-8 Engine

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Tremble before the Greatness of the Stachentar

A friend of redditor burnworldburn28 made this image for a mustache growing competition. The only sad thing about this photo is that it's not a family portrait.

Link -via Geekosystem

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The Swedish Christmas Straw Goat

Christmas is less than a month away, so it's time to put up your Christmas straw goat. That's what the town of Gävle, Sweden has done every year since 1966, although residents support the practice for different reasons:

Half of the people take pride in the giant animal, while the other half take equal pride in attempting to burn it down. To date, the goat has been burnt down more times than it has survived the Christmas period. Large sums of money apparently change hands, as people bet on whether it will survive, or how long it lasts before being burnt down and previous attempts to sabotage it have even included the bribing of security guards

Link -via The Agitator | Photo: Wikimedia Commons

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Plush Marshmallows

Marshmallows have a rough life; their best case scenario is to get eaten. In inexperienced hands, the little white bundles of sugar can meet a fiery end, as Etsy seller Brittany illustrates with her marshmallow plushes.

Link -via Super Punch

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Pocket Size Espresso Machine

Instructables user urant built a self contained espresso machine that fits in his pocket. An alcohol stove provides the heat. That part required a lot of tinkering in order to be both safe and effective. The end result is a portable machine that brews a cup of espresso in just a few minutes.

Link -via Make

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Ramen Cup Transformer

(Video Link)

To celebrate the fortieth anniversary of its Cup Noodle line, Nissen Foods is building an army of transforming robots. When not in Kill All Humans Mode, they look like harmless cups of ramen sitting in your pantry.

Link (Google Translate) -via That's Nerdalicious!

Previously: Nissen Cup Noodle Ad Featuring Yoda

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The Well of Death

(Video Link)

Driving in a bowl isn't new, but neither is this rickety track made from salvaged wood. The Mauth Ka Kuan or Well of Death from a circus in India features spectacularly fearless drivers. Skip about two minutes into the video to watch them get truly insane.


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BBC Builds Dalek Model That Imitates the Actions of On-Screen Daleks

When the Daleks on TV speak, your toy Dalek speaks. When the Daleks on TV move, yours moves. When the Daleks on TV exterminate humans, yours exterminates humans. It is indeed a flawless plan:

It works through TVs or set-top boxes that are internet enabled, sending out Wi-Fi signals to any device in the home that can also connect to the internet.

The successful trial, involving two foot high Daleks, was revealed by BBC research and development bosses in the industry journal Broadcast.

Project director Adrian Woolard said: "It's a playful illustration that shows the possibilities that exist to producers when we start to think about future connectivity in a home environment in which all devices will be IP (internet) connected.

"Effectively this puts another actor in the living room, enabling a production team to write a script and include it as part of the viewer's experience."

You can watch a video of the toy at DVICE.

Link -via DVICE | Image: BBC

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Beautiful but Deadly Snakes

Mark Laita composed a series of photographs of dangerous snakes from across the world. My favorite image is this one of the rhinoceros viper, a snake found in West and Central Africa.

Link -via My Modern Met | Photographer's Website

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South Korea Builds Robot Prison Guards

In order to control its population of rebellious human prisoners, South Korea's Ministry of Justice plans to test robot prison guards:

The robots are designed to patrol the corridors of corrective institutions, monitoring conditions inside the cells. If they detect sudden or unusual activity such as violent behavior they alert human guards.

The government should keep in mind that, with rising energy prices around the world, such a program could be expensive to maintain. There are, however, alternative energy sources.

Link -via Technabob | Photo: Yonhag

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Thanksgiving Dinner on the Death Star

It was supposed to be a fun family holiday, but things got tense yesterday. Really, Luke and Leia just can't seem to let go of the past when Vader is trying to hard to rebuild relationships. Photographer Stephen Hayford was on the scene for a portrait, but ended up taking a more revealing shot of family drama.

Link -via That's Nerdalicious! | Photographer's Website

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It's A Good Thing That He Had a Safety School

Harvey Wax failed to get into Princeton's law school, but he did get into Harvard's and went on to have a successful career. His letter, kept for many years in his family, was recently published in an anthology of rejection letters edited by Bill Shapiro. In an interview about this letter, Wax said "If you don’t get rejected, you don’t reach out even further, you don’t stretch yourself."

Link -via Letters of Note

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Bicycle Wheel Animation

(Video Link)

As part of her dissertation project, art student Katy Beveridge attempted to discern "whether it was possible to film animation in realtime." You can see from the zoetropes that she made with bicycle wheels that it definitely is. Clever soundtracking subtly enhances the visual effects, especially the scene with the mechanical hammers.

Artist's Website (warning: auto-sound) -via Colossal

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Salmon Crossing a Road

(Video Link)

There was only about an inch of water, but it was enough for these salmon in Mason County, Washington to participate in amphibious operations training. It's time to choose sides.

Link -via Blame It on the Voices

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Lucky Iron Fish Saves Lives in Cambodia

Anemia is a serious problem in Cambodia, leading to birth defects and impaired brain development. Chris Charles, a graduate student at the University of Guelph in Canada, was trying to persuade villagers there to increase the amount of iron in their diet. A simple solution would be to stir chunks of iron inside cooking pots, but Charles encountered serious resistance to this idea. His solution, which gained broad acceptance, was to shape the iron like a local fish considered lucky:

“We designed it about 3 or 4 inches long, small enough to be stirred easily but large enough to provide up to about 75 per cent of the daily iron requirement,” said Charles. They found a local scrap metal worker who could make them for $1.50 each, and so far they have been reusing the fish roughly three years.

“We’re getting fantastic results; there seems to be a huge decrease in anemia and the village women say they feel good, no dizziness, fewer headaches. The iron fish is incredibly powerful.”

Link -via @MarilynTerrell | Photo: Christopher Charles

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Pumpkin Pie Cooked inside a Pumpkin

Blogger Brooklyn Supper suggests adding a bit of butternut or kabocha squash to a conventional pumpkin pie recipe for added flavor. You can read her recipe at the link.

This gives me a crafting/cooking idea: a pumpkin pie cooked inside a pumpkin then carved into a jack-o'-lantern.

Link -via Tasteologie

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Alcoholic Law Books

The people at Bender Bound, Inc. used to be attorneys at a big law firm, so they understand the importance of at-work refreshment. They alter thick professional books that will never be opened -- until you need a drink. Although their product range originally focused on law books, they've branched out into a variety of categories listed on their page, including this one:

You're better off with a flask from the NeatoShop.

Link -via Lowering the Bar

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Microsoft Cart Offers Free Bacon to Amazon Employees in the Hope of Luring Them Away

Microsoft wants to hire the best engineers for its Kinect project, but that's hard when there are so many tech companies in the Seattle area vying for prospective employees. It hired the ad agency Wexley School for Girls to find a solution. The agency did so: bacon. Wexley set up a food cart outside of's headquarters and invited workers there to have some bacon:

The promo made its debut today in the shadow of headquarters in South Lake Union, where a stream of bacon lovers braved the downpour for free strips of Swinery pepper bacon.

Also free were toppings, including spray cheese, Sriracha, peanut butter, maple syrup and chocolate sauce.

Serious candidates may even get a bacon air freshener.

I just looked outside the door and there's no cart from anyone in front of the Neatorama office. I feel a bit unloved.

Link -via DVICE | Photo: Brier Dudley/Seattle Times

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Watch Brine Icicle form at the Bottom of the Sea

(Video Link)

Scientists in Antarctica used a time-lapse camera to capture the formation of a brinicle -- an icicle made from brine. As the salty water sank, it froze, forming a spike of brine down to the seafloor. As it grew over several hours, the brinicle killed everything in its path, including numerous unlucky starfish.

Link -via Geekosystem

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Teenager Arrested for Drunk Driving Blames Her Boyfriend for Not Taking Her to See the New Twilight Movie

An eighteen year old girl in Aurora, Illinois was arrested for drunk driving and driving without a tire on one of her wheels. But she had a good reason:

She told deputies she was extremely upset with her boyfriend because she did not get to see the new “Twilight” movie as they were supposed to do, according to a police report.

It's hard to be a teenager these days, especially when you have a crummy boyfriend like that.

Link -via Dave Barry | Image: Summit Entertainment

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Portrait of Beethoven Made from His Own Sheet Music

To carry out this elaborate project, Erika Iris Simmons sketched an outline of the composer and then cut up the center of the sheet with an X-Acto knife. She folded and arranged the pieces, doing her best to keep them in order and the notation correct. Simmons has similar pieces at her site, including a wave formed from the text of Benoit Mandelbrot's The Fractal Geometry of Nature.

Link | Artist's Website

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Ultimate Hunting Dog Trained to Fetch Vodka

(Video Link)

Lassie has nothing on this pup. Tsar the dog knows exactly how to be man's best friend.

-via That's Nerdalicious!

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The Katskhi Pillar

In the Seventh Century, monks built a monastery on the top of a natural stone pillar outside of Chiatura, Georgia. It was used by the Stylites -- Christian ascetics who lived on top of pillars to express their devotion. That sect is now extinct, but the monastery is still there. Visitors get to the top by climbing a 130 foot ladder.

Link | Photo: Ivane Goliadze

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In the Future, Bionic Contact Lenses Will Let You Keep up with Your Twitter Stream through Your Eyeballs

If there's one big problem with the Internet, it's that you can't be on it all day, every day, without interruption. No, sometimes you must take your eyes away from the screen. Those are sad times, but they will soon be in the past. Researchers have made progress toward interactive contact lens displays. Here's the future envisioned by the developers:

They envisage hundreds more pixels could be embedded in the flexible lens to produce complex holographic images.

For example, drivers could wear them to see journey directions or their vehicle's speed projected onto the windscreen.

Similarly, the lenses could take the virtual world of video gaming to a new level.

Link -via Dave Barry | Photo: Flickr user skippyjon

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Profile for John Farrier

  • Member Since 2012/08/04


Blog Posts

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