A history of the Cabbage Patch Kid crazeAPR 17

From Vice's American Obsessions video series, a piece on the Cabbage Patch doll craze of the 1980s.

The idea for the Cabbage Patch doll was brazenly stolen from the original creator by Xavier Roberts, whose Wikipedia entry currently begins:

Xavier Roberts (born October 31, 1955, Cleveland, Georgia), misappropriater of Cabbage Patch Kids, is an American artist, businessman, thief and asshole.

His profile also states that he went on to create a series of bear toys called The Foreskin Bears. LOL. (via devour)

  quick links, updated constantly

Ernest Baker spends a week with Drake, "the most thoroughly modern of all rappers"

Confirmed: the first nesting pair of bald eagles seen in NYC in 100 years

An interview with Slack's CEO; Q. So do you think Slack is worth $3 billion? A. It is, because people say it is.

Choire Sicha reviews Jon Ronson's So You've Been Publicly Shamed. Daaaaang.

Tags: Blade Runner, sequels, Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford

Elon Musk: "humans need to be a multiplanet species"

Oral history of the 1990s Orlando Magic, the dynasty that wasn't

The monetary cost of gun violence in the US is $229 billion/yr. That's $700/person a year.

Comparing the rise of BuzzFeed to the similar trajectories of Time, USA Today, and MTV

Cryotherapy: The Dubious Appeal of Shooting -260 Degree Nitrogen at Your Naked Skin

There's no quick links archive yet. If you'd like to see 'em all, follow @kottke on Twitter.

The Hateful Eight teaser trailerAPR 17

This is the teaser trailer for Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful Eight, the movie whose script leaked, was cancelled, was planned to be released as a book, and then uncanceled.

Update: I'm getting emails and tweets saying this trailer is fake. And if it is fake, is there a non-fake leaked trailer out there or...?

Jiro Ono and Rene Redzepi Have a Cup of TeaAPR 17

Jiro Ono (who Dreams of Sushi) and René Redzepi (who is probably the current Best Chef in the World™) sit down for a cup of tea and a chat.

At one point, Redzepi asks Jiro at what age he thought he had become a master. The reply:

Let's say it's 50. There is a lot of failure before that. You go through failures and successes, and more failures for years until it feels like you have achieved what you had in mind the whole time.

There's also a bit at the end, offered almost as an aside, of what it takes to be a master: a blend of stubbornness and sensitivity. What a combination...I wish they'd had another cup and talked about that.

The Making of Star WarsAPR 17

In 1977, only a few months after the movie came out, a hour-long television special called The Making of Star Wars aired on ABC. It was the first documentary about Star Wars.

LOL to the rehearsal shot at 4:10 of Han going "bang, bang, bang, bang, bang" while shooting his blaster, the reaction of Luke, Han, and Leia to a boom mic blowing the 18th take of a scene at 34:20, and the description of Princess Leia as "royalty of a very liberated kind". (via kung fu grippe)

Mad River Glen's famed single chairAPR 16

From Nowness, a brief homage to the single chair lift at one of the oddest and most wonderful ski areas in the US, Mad River Glen in Vermont.

You don't have a lot of opportunity in life these days to have 10 or 12 minutes alone. Some people think when they come here and they ride the chair, it's a lonely ride. I never really thought of it that way.

I haven't checked for sure, but Mad River might be the only ski area in the world with a chairlift that has its own beer.

Earliest Apple.com homepageAPR 16

Kevin Fox recently unearthed a screenshot he took of Apple's homepage in the early 90s:

Apple early homepage

I don't remember this version, but it looks like it was contemporary with this Microsoft homepage (which I do remember). I bet there's footage of this page in Triumph of the Nerds or Nerds 2.0.1 or on an episode of Computer Chronicles. Anyone?

FKA BiggieAPR 16

Terry Urban's 8-song mashup album of FKA Twigs and Notorious B.I.G.

Why not FKA Biggs? Or Notorious T.W.I.G.S.? Twiggie Smalls? (via @frank_chimero)

Star Wars: The Force Awakens teaser trailer #2APR 16

Ok, this one gave me goosebumps. I hope this is good.

MoMA's digital art vaultAPR 16

MoMA Digital Art Vault

Ben Fino-Radin of MoMA's Department of Conservation wrote a brief post about how the museum manages their digital artworks, including a bit about how they think about futureproofing the collection.

The packager addresses the most fundamental challenge in digital preservation: all digital files are encoded. They require special tools in order to be understood as anything more than a pile of bits and bytes. Just as a VHS tape is useless without a VCR, a digital video file is useless without some kind of software that understands how to interpret and play it, or tell you something about its contents. At least with a VHS tape you can hold it in your hand and say, "Hey, this looks like a VHS tape and it probably has an analog video signal recorded on it." But there is essentially nothing about a QuickTime .MOV file that says, "Hello, I am a video file! You should use this sort of software to view me." We rely on specially designed software-be it an operating system or something more specialized-to tell us these things. The problem is that these tools may not always be around, or may not always understand all formats the way they do today. This means that even if we manage to keep a perfect copy of a video file for 100 years, no one may be able to understand that it's a video file, let alone what to do with it. To avoid this scenario, the "packager" -- free, open-source software called Archivematica -- analyzes all digital collections materials as they arrive, and records the results in an obsolescence-proof text format that is packaged and stored with the materials themselves. We call this an "archival information package."

Seveneves by Neal StephensonAPR 15

Stephenson Seveneves

Neal Stephenson has made the first 26 pages of his upcoming book, Seveneves, available on his website. About the book:

A catastrophic event renders the earth a ticking time bomb. In a feverish race against the inevitable, nations around the globe band together to devise an ambitious plan to ensure the survival of humanity far beyond our atmosphere, in outer space.

But the complexities and unpredictability of human nature coupled with unforeseen challenges and dangers threaten the intrepid pioneers, until only a handful of survivors remain...

Five thousand years later, their progeny-seven distinct races now three billion strong-embark on yet another audacious journey into the unknown... to an alien world utterly transformed by cataclysm and time: Earth.

The novel is out on May 19.

The salad days of coin huntingAPR 15

Roger Pasquier hunts for coins on NYC sidewalks and keeps track of how much he finds. He discovered an odd consequence of everyone having a smartphone: people don't pick up change on the sidewalk anymore.

From 1987 to 2006, he averaged about fifty-eight dollars a year. Then Apple introduced the iPhone, and millions of potential competitors started to stare at their screens rather than at the sidewalks. Since 2007, Pasquier has averaged just over ninety-five dollars a year.

I know, I know, that's anecdotal and correlation != causation and whatever, but that's an interesting theory.

David Chase on The Sopranos endingAPR 15

Tony Soprano

David Chase analyzes the final scene of The Sopranos in great detail for the Directors Guild of America's quarterly magazine.

It was my decision to direct the episode such that whenever Tony arrives someplace, he would see himself. He would get to the place and he would look and see where he was going. He had a conversation with his sister that went like this. And then he later had a conversation with Junior that went like this. I had him walk into his own POV every time. So the order of the shots would be Tony close-up, Tony POV, hold on the POV, and then Tony walks into the POV. And I shortened the POV every time. So that by the time he got to Holsten's, he wasn't even walking toward it anymore. He came in, he saw himself sitting at the table, and the next thing you knew he was at the table.

Great read. Here's the final scene to refresh your memory.

The Loch Ness soup ladleAPR 15

Behold, the world's greatest kitchen utensil, the Nessie Ladle.

Nessie Ladle

Ex Machina soundtrackAPR 14

A new listen-while-you-code/write/design favorite.

I really liked the movie. Matt Zoller Seitz's review captured it well.

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