Home > Links, Weekly Link Dump > This Week 03: October 18

This Week 03: October 18

This week’s round-up of cool/funny/sad/interesting things from around the web contains quite a lot of things from BoingBoing and Pharyngula, so if you follow those sites you’re already ahead of the game.  Our crazy combo this time features Anne Frank, Joss Whedon, another wacky Japanese TV show, tabloid standards, aquaria, whale sharks, the planet Mercury, chimpanzees, Sarah Silverman and The Vatican.  Let’s begin!

This week I was interested by:

(found via BoingBoing)

It’s the only existing footage of Anne Frank who, as the linked article neatly summed up, was “the inspirational 13-year-old diarist who hid from the Nazis in an Amsterdam attic before finally dying in a concentration camp.”  It comes from a wedding video from some of her neighbours.

I was amused/disappointed by:

5 Reasons it Sucks to be a Joss Whedon Fan – The mixed reaction is because most of what the article says is true and it’s amusing seeing it all presented quite accurately, but is obviously disappointing for the same reason.  The third point, about Whedon trying to dodge blame any time he’s involved in something bad, is one I particularly agree with.  Though it’s a fairly poor Alien film, I did actually quite enjoy Alien Resurrection on its own merits, and it was uncomfortable reading his attempts to avoid responsibility, saying that even when the followed his script, they did so “wrong”.

I was unsurprised by:

Starsuckers’ celebrity hoax dupes tabloids – Essentially, a group of people decided to send fake tips about celebrities to the gossip sections of several newspapers, and see if they’d try to source them or just run with them as they are.  Not only did they successfully get their lies into papers, they were then quickly picked up by other papers who took the original source as true, and there was even one fake story about Sarah Harding that The Sun apparently spoke to a corroborating source about.  Either that, or the paper had to have invented it:

A Starsuckers researcher called the Sun pretending to be “Karys”, the wife of a removal man who had recently helped the singer move home. The reporter was told Harding owned a number of books on quantum physics and a telescope. “Maybe she’s really into astronomy or something, I dunno,” she said.

The Sun’s story, headlined “Sarah’s a real boffin”, claimed Harding was a “secret stargazer” who reads “mind-boggling books about astronomy and quantum physics”. It also contained a quote from “a source”, which, the Atkins team insists, did not come from them.

“There’s a lot more going on under that blonde barnet than Sarah’s given credit for,” the Sun’s source said. “She’s a smart cookie and does read an awful lot.”

In their defence we are only talking about quick, throwaway articles to fill space in the celebrity gossip sections, but it’s still not great that they’ll take the word of anonymous callers and not check at all.

This week I loved:

To a Top Scientist (found via BoingBoing) – In 1957, schoolboy Denis Cox sent Woomera’s Rocket Range an urgent letter about his designs for a rocket.  The letter is basically one big drawing with a few superficial details and a couple of specifics – “4 Rolls Royce Jet Engines” – adding that they would need to “Put in other details”.  It’s really sweet, and though he didn’t get a reply back then the letter’s rediscovery has apparently prompted The Defence Science Technology Organisation to get some of its rocket scientists to reply.  Excellent.

This week I was soothed by:

(found via Pharyngula)

Technically I wasn’t actually soothed by the video because I was already nice and mellow, but it’s still soothing in general.  It’s footage from the world’s second largest aquarium, the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium in Japan, set to some peaceful music.  I’ve never been to an aquarium that even comes close to that, but I really would love to.  Those whale sharks are magnificent.

I enjoyed:

MercuryCAUTION, links to 20MB image (found via It Starts With a Bang) – It’s a high-resolution image of Mercury’s surface in a chunky 20MB file.  Lots and lots of craters.

I was amused by:

(careful, there’s some NSFW language)

(found, yet again, via Pharyngula)

Comedian Sarah Silverman offers a proposal to end world hunger: sell the Vatican and use the money to feed those who need it.  It’s an entertaining watch.

I was boggled by:

Arm Fall-off Boy – As far as I’m aware the whole set-up for all those myriad audition scenes was to intentionally have a lot of duff candidates, but this one stretches the “super” part of super powers pretty far.

I was saddened by:

Quoting from the source: "Lying in the wheelbarrow is the body of Dorothy, a chimpanzee who died suddenly of natural causes; the people in the scene are preparing to bury her. Behind the fence is a quiet gathering of her friends."

Quoting from the source: "Lying in the wheelbarrow is the body of Dorothy, a chimpanzee who died suddenly of natural causes; the people in the scene are preparing to bury her. Behind the fence is a quiet gathering of her friends."

(found via Pharyngula again)

I didn’t actually mean to start and end with sad links, but that’s just how unpredictable the internet can be.  Aside from the weekly highlights, that’s all for this week!

Film of the Week: Up

TV of the Week: Dexter (season six premiere)

Game of the Week: Brutal Legend

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  1. October 19, 2009 at 23:34

    Came across a Twitter post that tied in nicely with the Joss Whedon article linked above, and the point about him not being afraid to kill people off:

    “RT @BrianLynch: Joss Whedon to direct an episode of GLEE. Three characters to die.”

  1. November 2, 2009 at 19:27

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