From Boing Boing

  • Why we never forget how to ride a bike

    There's scientific truth to the saying that you never forget how to ride a bike. Even if you can't remember phone numbers, birthdays, or where the hell you parked your car, it's likely that even if you haven't been on a bicycle in decades, you can climb on and ride away just fine. Why? Neuropsychologist Boris Suchan of Germany's Ruhr University Bochum lays it out as best we know in Scientific American:

    As it turns out, different types of memories are stored in distinct regions of our brains....


  • The thinnest piece of paper in the world

    Japanese specialist paper manufacturer Hidaka Washi Ltd makes the world's thinnest paper using 1,000-year-old methods.

    The paper is then sent to museums and libraries around the world—including the British Museum and the Library of Congress—and is used to restore and protect books and works of art.

    (Great Big Story)

    Read the rest


  • Bernie Sanders introduces the Stop Walmart Act: no stock buybacks without a $15 minimum wage

    Bernie Sanders's latest legislative proposal is the Stop Walmart Act; Sanders describes Walmart as the "poster child for corporate greed" and uses that as a launching point to propose a ban on stock buybacks from companies unless they pay their lowest-waged employees $15/hour.

    It's a followup to his Stop Bezos Act, a proposal that ultimately shamed Amazon to raising its minimum wage to $15.

    In a call with reporters, the independent senator from Vermont reiterated his praise of Amazon,...


  • Do you think that we're living in a simulation?

    Do you believe that we're living in a simulation? Has that belief affected your life? My old pal Rodney Ascher, director of fantastically freaky documentaries like Room 237, about weird theories surrounding The Shining, and The Nightmare, a study on sleep paralysis, is starting on a new far-out film about people who are convinced that our world is a digital creation. If you're one of those people, Rodney would love to hear from you.

    "The approach, like my other films, is to focus almost...


  • Garry Shandling hosted secret pickup basketball games at his home for 25 years

    Nearly every Sunday for 25 years, Garry Shandling held a secret pickup basketball game for his friends, including celebrities like Sarah Silverman, David Duchovny, Sacha Baron Cohen, Will Ferrell, Kevin Nealon, and Judd Apatow. ESPN writes, "Those Sundays yielded friendships that are responsible for some of the best television and film of the past 20 years. As director Alex Richanbach says, 'This group of people found a little family in Los Angeles because we all have the same comedy...


  • My life on the road: watching life roll by from the corner of my eye

    Two days of waiting in Casper, Wyoming, $1,200 and two new tires later, we were back on the road. Casper is a small city. It is one of Wyoming's most populated cities. It is a city flanked by mountains and, while we were being held captive by a blown out tire on a holiday weekend, a miserably cold, humid city.

    It was a city we were happy to leave.

    The man who taught me how to fight once told me that the only thing worse than getting punched is waiting to get punched. This holds true for many...


  • Generative adversarial network produces a "universal fingerprint" that will unlock many smartphones

    Researchers at NYU and U Michigan have published a paper explaining how they used a pair of machine-learning systems to develop a "universal fingerprint" that can fool the lowest-security fingerprint sensors 76% of the time (it is less effective against higher-security sensors).

    The researchers used "generative adversarial networks" (GAN) to develop their attack: this technique uses a pair of machine learning systems, a "generator" which tries to fool a "discriminator," to produce a kind of...


  • Raccoons may not be rabid, just drunk

    In Milton, West Virginia, concerned citizens called police to report rabid raccoons but it turns out that the animals (the raccoons that is) were more likely just drunk. “We have had calls [of] suspected rabid raccoons twice over the last two days,” the Milton Police Department wrote in a short Facebook post. “Turns out they appear to be drunk on crab apples.” From Newsweek:

    It wouldn’t be the first time an animal has made the headlines for public intoxication. In 2015, footage of a squirrel...


  • The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin, 2017 documentary about 'Tales of the City' creator

    In anticipation of the brand new Tales of the City series (!!), Netflix is now playing the documentary about its creator, The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin.

    THE UNTOLD TALES OF ARMISTEAD MAUPIN examines the life and work of one of the world's most beloved storytellers, following his evolution from a conservative son of the Old South into a gay rights pioneer whose novels have inspired millions to claim their own truth. Jennifer Kroot's documentary about the creator of TALES OF THE CITY moves...


  • Only three hours left to win a role in "Bill and Ted Face the Music"

    The strongest news we've heard that Bill and Ted Face the Music will actually be made is that they are now auctioning off a walk on role for charity.

    There are three hours left to bid. The proceeds go to Homes for Our Troops. I hope you win!

    From SYFY.com:

    With Veteran's Day starting off the week, the charity group Homes For Our Troops kicked off a celebrity-fueled series of auctions to raise funds for their cause. While you can bid on everything from a Game of Thrones sweepstakes to George...


  • Delorean hovercraft for sale

    You can own this DIY hovercraft Delorean for $45,000 "or best offer." After all, where you're going, you don't need roads. The seller is donating 10% of the sale to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinsons Research. Video of the vehicle below. From eBay:

    What you get:

    1. Hand-built Hovercraft sculpted to look exactly like a Delorean. This is a functional work of art, it is not a Delorean bolted onto a hovercraft. There's only one in the world!

    2. Custom flatbed tilting trailer built...


  • Here's the secret details of 200 cities' license-plate tracking programs

    The Electronic Frontier Foundation and Muckrock teamed up to use the Freedom of Information Act to extract the details of 200 US cities' Automated License Plate Recognition camera programs (ALPR), and today they've released a dataset containing all the heretofore secret data on how these programs are administered and what it done with the data they collect.

    All told, these programs account for 2.5 billion license plate scans, in which 95% of the vehicles scanned were not under suspicion of...