Contraptions

What Were The Earliest Vibrators Like?

by on February 3, 2014

They were steam-powered, coal-fired, belt-driven and studded with vibratodes as Rachel Maines, technology historian and author of The Technology of Orgasm explains. I thank her for introducing me to the term “vibratode,” and to the phrase “hedonizing technology.” She gives an eye-opening account of the social, medical and technological history of self-pleasure, replete with self-deceptions, hypocrisies and rooftop Chattanoogas.

But in any case, there’s the connection with hydrotherapy and


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Shopping By The Stars: New Year’s Edition

by on December 16, 2013

In this new installment in what future generations will one day refer to as ‘Paltry Wisdom,’ we provide helpful shopping tips for you, the consumer. Many of us will soon be awash in the drunken, regretful spectacle that is New Year’s Eve. Maybe you’ve been invited to attend a New Year’s party. Maybe you’re the kind of conscientious party guest who plans ahead and brings a gift for the host. …
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Do Androids Need Buddhist Non-Attachment? (And A PowerWasher)

by on August 9, 2013

BlueFairy-700

The Blue Fairy from A.I. Artificial Intelligence

1. The robot who loved his ‘mom’ too much

2. The robot who loved whoever came into the room, too much

Robot Programmed to Fall in Love with a Girl Goes too Far

Kenji was part of an experiment involving several robots loaded with custom software designed to let them react emotionally to external stimuli. After some limited environmental conditioning, Kenji first demonstrated


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Eyes Of A Drone

by on June 14, 2013

A new camera developed by the Pentagon’s research arm was highlighted in a recent special on PBS’ “Nova” in an episode called “Rise of the Drones.” It’s a camera system so detailed it can discern specific movements and even what a subject is wearing.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s (DARPA’s) Autonomous Real-Time Ground Ubiquitous Surveillance Imaging System (ARGUS) has 1.8 billion pixels (1.8 gigapixels), making it the world’ highest


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Purpose Of The NSA Snoop Machine Revealed

by on June 13, 2013

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The Midnight Curve

A senior, although not current, official of the NSA today revealed the targeted purpose of its vast snoop-and-scoop Internet spying apparatus and, incredibly, it is this – time travel. The wholesale capture of the Internet past, and the current and ongoing capture of the Internet as-it-is-occurring, with exponentially increasing levels of granularity, is allowing NSA servers to knit together what is being called an Intertinuum, …
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Maywa Denki – Dedicated To Whimsy

by on May 14, 2013

Innumerable species play, and many – certainly many primates – laugh and tease and jest. But are we alone in our ability to grasp, appreciate, and delight in the absurd? How stands the octopus on Dada? (On his head-foot, of course.) As this video of the Maywa Denki group illustrates, true nonsense requires a most subtle and flexible mind, and whimsy takes dedication.

Via Laughing Squid

Originally posted May 24, …
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Top 10 Most Powerful Nuclear Bombs In History

by on March 23, 2013

Via Democratic Underground
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Folding And Cutting The Space-Time Continuum (with things you probably have around the house)

by on February 11, 2013

With paper, felt pens, scissors and some unspecified power tools, the charming mathemusician, Vihart, plays Grinderman with the fabric of reality. Dance, critters!

via Open Culture
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“Gravity is a Mistake”

by on February 6, 2013


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Compressorhead ~ Ace Of Spades

by on January 6, 2013

No Sleep ‘Til… …well, just no sleep

Compressorhead is:

Stickboy (drums) was created to exacting specifications. 4 arms, 2 legs, 1 head, no brain. he plays a Pearl 14 piece kit with double kick. stickboy junior, the bastard child of an unknown mother takes control of the hihat shuffle. inception date 2007

Fingers (guitar) joined stickboy in 2009 and brings 78 purpose built fingers, enough to play the entire fret


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Mars 360 (Through Curiosity Eyes)

by on September 21, 2012

Click, pan and zoom the martian landscape through the lenses of the Curiosity rover.

Mars Panorama – Curiosity rover in New Mexico

h/t Alex Evstr…
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1000 Words, 1000 Days: Day 234 – Class & Elegance From The Bradford Exchange

by on August 26, 2012

I have waited a long time for this day.

No online catalog of kitsch, from the Franklin Mint to the R2D2 replicas on Skymall, comes close to the sheer volume of quirky miscellany as the Bradford Exchange. Indeed, this may be the first topic I re-visit, as they continue to update their supply of unfathomable oddities.

Founded in 1973 as a way for collectors to swap trinkets and doodads …
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