Boing Boing


? Boing Boing

Dale Dougherty is the founder of MAKE Magazine and Maker Faire. He believes in a simple idea: that we all have potential to be makers. He is passionate about creating a generation who are creative, innovative, curious, and making things to improve our world.

Dale Dougherty, Maker — PART 1 from THE NEXT LIST on Vimeo.

What causes brain freeze

? Boing Boing

The warm weather, the icy beverages and the splitting headaches you get from drinking them too fast. In this episode, Scientific American editor Ferris Jabr explains how brain freeze occurs and how best to avoid it.

If you are going to insult a minority at least do it properly

? Boing Boing

Ashton Kutcher get pwnd by Hasan Minhaj:

?”You have a shitty accent. You’re not even being racist correctly. If you’re gonna be racist, come correct with your racism.”?Hasan Minhaj.

Downhill Babes

? Boing Boing

Anna and a friend undertake a breathtaking longboard freeride down a winding mountain road (possibly in Maryhill, Washington, home to a full-size Stonehenge replica). It’s really something to watch, though my inner worrywart kept wanting to stop the proceedings and equip the riders with protective clothing for their bare skin. I was a little disappointed that we didn’t see the dismount, because the whole way down, I kept wondering, how the hell do you stop?

Rob Beschizza On Blogging

? Boing Boing

The?Managing?Editor of Boing Boing, Rob Beschizza, explains what blogging is to him and how to blog.

There are some good parts, great parts and gay parts of his post. But since Boing Boing is one of the worlds best blogs it pays to listen to what Rob has to say.

His comments about critics are interesting:


Even if you have thriving, dedicated, civil, reasonable, no-nonsense commenters, they’ll still be a tiny fraction of your readership. It’s true that they’re an important constituency; they build upon your work and buy your t-shirts. But losing sight of the 99.95 percent of readers who never talk to you is a bad idea–a bad idea that grows with your readership.

How do you serve people who aren’t in the habit of giving feedback? The answer’s simple:don’t stop doing whatever it is that brought them to you.

A habitual mistake of successful bloggers is to react to criticism from commenters and peers. First, we write about something in a certain way that builds an audience. Then the audience reaches a threshold at which criticism loudly presents itself. Then we make the critical mistake of thinking the critic represents the audience.

It’s hard to figure out how to respect a largely invisible readership, but the first step is respecting whatever you did to earn it.

and my personal favourite related to critics, but ones who are tits at blogging themselves:


Harsh, but true! Ignore bloggers, SEO experts, marketing gurus and other people who have figured out a traffic trick or two, but who have never built a large audience of daily readers.

A lot of people have a fixed idea of what a blog is: it’s something like Boing Boing, Gawker, or TechCrunch as they were years ago. A smattering of news, thoughts, links, opinions, random stuff. But you need to run where the ball is headed, not where it was in 2005.

At Boing Boing, we now pay experienced freelancers for original features on extremely obscure subjects. Long before becoming part of AOL, TechCrunch had a full-time staff of reporters who knew what was going on in Silicon Valley before anyone else. Gawker now occupies two floors in Manhattan, and has video monitors informing dozens of writers how their stories are performing.

Instead of trying to repeat others’ success, find something that no-one else is doing right. Find something close to your heart that no-one else is as interested in as you are.

Finally, stay away from cynics who see success in writing as a closed circle. I didn’t do a day of blogging before I got hired by Wired a few years ago; I posted comments on other people’s posts, on forums. Within a couple of years, I was an editor at Boing Boing.

So, people whining about the inaccessibility of the so-called blogging A-list can safely be ignored. They always were full of shit and they always were a bore. Be good at what you do, make friends with people who know a thing or two, and always be posting.

Exterminate your Stress

? Boing Boing

The Daleks provide a nice calming relaxation audio for the highly stressed person…perhaps Trevor Mallard might like to try this:

Chart of the Day

Boing Boing has an interesting post about diet and obesity. But it was this graph that piqued my interest…basically if you stuff ever increasing amounts of food into your gob you get fat…who woulda thought?

On the other hand a friend of mine argued with me about the so called obesity epidemic…she said I was wrong and that there is an obesity epidemic…she caught it…and a few others she knows have caught it too.

The missing solo

via Boing Boing

In this video we see Sir George Martin, Giles Martin (his son), and Dhani Harrison listening to the mix of “Here Comes The Sun”.

Suddenly Dhani opens the channel with the “lost solo guitar”. And now, with the master track in the background, you can hear how it sounds in music.

That was George Harrison. A true genius.

A proper response

The other day Boing Boing published an article about the Police in Georgia (the country not the state) and their new iPad like?devices. In the article they added the following comment:

“100% guaranteed those crooked, fat, lazy cops will be using these devices primarily for porn and Russian gambling services.”

Boing Boing is clearly very widely read because the?Georgian?government responded. The letter is awesome and shows how you can turn a silly comment into a social media win. Labour should take note:

The article published on [Boing Boing on] January 12, 2012, about the initiative by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia to introduce new portable field computers (so called ?Police Pads?) ends with an anonymous quote declaring that “100% guaranteed those crooked, fat, lazy cops will be using these devices primarily for porn and Russian gambling services.”

Stereotypes like this are easy to toss out?but are quite simply incorrect. This quote does not reflect the productivity, effectiveness, transparency, and reliability of the police force in Georgia today, but rather the bygone era of the 1990s, a reality that has drastically changed thanks to an ambitious and successful reform process.

The reform process in Georgia began immediately after the 2003 Rose Revolution. The new government inherited a completely corrupt and bloated law-enforcement system. The systemic corruption and the high level of crime throughout the country resulted in a very low level of public trust: fewer than 10% of Georgians had confidence in the police, according to 2003 polls. And the very low average policeman’s salary (approximately $68 per month) made the soliciting of bribes routine.

Georgia has since made the creation of an efficient and modern police force a national priority, undertaking a series of reforms that sought to rebuild the national police force literally from the ground up. The entire national police force was fired, and a new force hired, trained and deployed with the aim of meeting the highest international standards of professionalism.

These reforms are widely regarded as an unqualified success. Having reduced corruption and bribe taking to levels comparable to those in Europe, the police in Georgia have earned the trust and respect of the public they serve:

?According to Transparency International?s latest Global Corruption Barometer, in terms of public perception Georgia has the world?s 5th least-corrupt police force, placing it ahead of Germany or even the United States;

?According to the survey conducted by the International Republican Institute (IRI) in November 2011, 87% of population have confidence in Police;

?According to a survey funded by the EU and conducted by GORBI Institute in 2011, Georgia has one of the lowest “victimization coefficients,” a measure that reflects public perceptions of crime and individual security.

On the subject of the so-called “Police Pads,” reforms have transformed what was once an antiquated backlog of paper files for car imports, registries, and customs. They have been replaced with new, cutting-edge technology capable of streamlining requests and filing paperwork in record time.

Georgia has much work to do in shaking off the vestiges of nearly a century of Soviet occupation, but the transformation of our police force into a modern and professional service is an achievement that Georgians are deeply proud of, and a symbol of our commitment to retake our rightful place in the European community.

January 16, 2012
Press Center of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia

No one will be under any illusion now as tot he fact that Georgia is a vibrant, modern, improving economy climbing out of the wreck of Soviet domination.

How traffic jams are made

via Boing Boing

A couple of years ago, Cory posted?a really interesting story about the mathematics behind seemingly cause-less traffic jams. It’s pretty interesting. Shorter version: The researchers think jams like this are caused by one person braking, and the response to that slow down moves through dense traffic in a way that is mathematically very similar to the shock wave from an explosion. Once you have enough density of cars on a road, jams are inevitable.