“Dr. John W. Mauchly, inventor of some of the original room-size electronic computers, poses in Washington, DC, on November 2, 1962 with one the size of a suitcase after addressing a meeting of the American Institute of Industrial Engineers. He now is working on a pocket variety which, he says, may eliminate the housewife’s weekly shopping list and the chore of filling it by hand. He predicted everyone will be walking around with his own personalized computer within a decade.
With pop culture apparently suffering from a retro epidemic lately, today’s 60th anniversary of Singin’ in the Rain provides a chance to look back at a film that was ahead of its time in the way that it, too, looked back. Still fresh and charming in present-day viewings, Singin’delivered a sophisticated take on a tremendous transition in moviemaking that had happened decades before its release. But unlike the recent Oscars’ slate of history-fetishizing films—The Artist, Hugo, and Midnight in Paris among them—it didn’t romanticize the past but rather voyaged happily forward. […]
Beyond the actual backdrop of an industry in flux, Singin’ in the Rain’s jokes and light parodies of actors and Hollywood culture are still surprisingly insightful and effective. There’s the dopey screen siren thinking that she’s in a relationship with her co-star because she read it in a gossip magazine. There’s Kathy Selden’s (Debbie Reynolds) attempt to insult the cocky movie star with her emphatic declaration that “if you’ve seen one movie, you’ve seen ‘em all.” And there’s the brilliant segment where Don Lockwood recounts his rise to fame, telling his fans that he was trained at Juilliard and brought up on Shaw and Molière, while we in the audience are treated to an amusing simultaneous montage revealing that he actually cut his teeth through thankless beer-hall performances and dangerous stunt work.
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Tebow has come to expose something weirdly profound in our culture. This is America, circa 2012: 43 percent of the people who know about Tebow believe divine intervention is a factor in his success. African Americans (60 percent) and Latinos (81 percent) believe God’s hand is reaching down to create more perfect spirals for #15.
Exhibit A in the case of our failed education system.
A look at the Dippin’ Dots manufacturing process, as the oddball ice cream maker files for bankruptcy — (via Dippin’ Dots, Futuristic Ice Cream-Maker, Files for Bankruptcy)
If you want to have a badass story to tell at a party, go base-jumping. Off of a wind turbine.
Grist highlights an amazing video compilation of people jumping off wind turbines with hand-carried parachutes. Three things to note: 1) This is insane. 2) Wind turbines are huge; an increasing amount of wind turbines stand taller than 300 feet, or about the same size as the Statue of Liberty, including her pedestal.
Religion is the vision of something which stands beyond, behind, and within, the passing flux of immediate things; something which is real, and yet waiting to be realized; something which is a remote possibility, and yet the greatest of present facts; something which gives meaning to all that passes, and yet eludes apprehension; something whose possession is the final good, and yet is beyond all reach; something which is the ultimate ideal, and the hopeless quest.