Friday, November 20, 2009

Friday link-dump

Have been piling up things I want to blog, while simultaneously running a time debt at work and at home. A couple of personal posts will be forthcoming, but meantime here are a bunch of things that each deserve a whole blog post but aren't going to get them...
  • Here's a short and sobering video of ACLU interviews with Gitmo detainees who were held for several years and then released without charges or explanations. Oh, our lost national purpose!

  • Three things about football helmets (from the lighthearted to the serious):
    1. Some of the helmets need some serious redesign from the graphical effectiveness point of view.
    2. This New Yorker article has sapped much of my enjoyment of Sunday afternoon football games: Offensive Play tracks the degree of lasting injury and brain-damage done to the average player (especially lineman) and wonders how we justify our acceptance of this gladiatorial combat (which the author compares to dogfighting in its brutality).
    3. Following on those revelations, another author asks whether we should do away with helmets in order to make players more cautious and remove some of the daily battering that their heads are subjected to.

  • More on how great it is to be a woman today:
    1. A writer and editor notes that popular fiction about women tends to be dismissed as "chick lit," while similar stories with male protagonists (and authors) tend to be seen as universal in their lessons and appeal. Women are just so... different. (via Medley)
    2. Katha Pollitt at the Nation asks the Democrats we all worked so hard to elect, Whose Team Is It, Anyway? when they say that the only way to pass healthcare reform is to abandon the health and freedoms of women. Time for somebody else to "take one for the team."

  • For fans of The Wire, a little trip through some great moments and characters: The 100 best quotes from The Wire.

  • A ten-year-old takes a principled stand, refusing to recite the Pledge of Allegiance until gays really share the liberties and justices of the rest of us... (and no, neither he nor any family members have a direct personal stake in the issue)

  • Science blows my mind: slow-motion video of water drops show that they bounce on the water surface (often several times) before being absorbed. Very cool.
    wireless ginko
  • Finally, a little lightness in honor of fall: many clever concepts illustrated with leaves. Kicks and giggles.
    (via kottke)

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