Sunday, 24 June 2012

10 stories and links that I found educative, interesting or simply weird

The Smoking Dog: 1927
via Shorpy Historical Photo Archive - Vintage Fine Art Prints by Dave
The Smoking Dog: 1927
March 18, 1927, Washington, D.C.
“Margo Couzens, daughter of Senator Couzens”
An heiress whose early life might be outlined thusly: aspiring artiste; leadfoot horn-honker; teenage bride (eloped); hothead horn-honker; divorcee.
National Photo Company Collection glass negative.
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Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
Every week, Martin Kemp hears from people convinced they’ve found a lost Leonardo. Then one day, someone really did. “I experienced a frisson”... more

Portraits of a Dot: Earth from Space via Britannica Blog by Richard Pallardy
NASA called its 1972 image of Earth – captured from the Apollo 17 spacecraft—the Blue Marble. Carl Sagan dubbed the 1990 photograph of our planet – taken at his request from the Voyager 1 space probe – the Pale Blue Dot
 Images of our planet from space tend to bring out the existential in those that examine them. How can they not? Object lessons in the subjectivity of perspective, they're simultaneously self-portraits and group portraits, landscapes and still-lifes.
Earth seen from Apollo 17, December 7, 1972. Credit: NASA
Earth seen from Apollo 17, December 7, 1972. Credit: NASA
Read more – and feel very small!

Esquire’s Automobile Parade, 1935 via Retronaut by Amanda
Since I am not that much “into” motor cars my choice of picture, and the reason why I picked on this entry in the first place, is the cover.

You can view all the cars, pictures and information, here.
Source: Old Car Brochures

Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
No mere cad, Casanova was a spy, astrologer, friend of Voltaire. History’s greatest lover? Maybe. Enlightenment polymath? Definitely... more

Scientists lift lid on turtle evolution
via 3quarksdaily by Azra Raza
From PhysOrg:
The turtle is a closer relative of crocodiles and birds than of lizards and snakes, according to researchers who claim to have solved an age-old riddle in animal evolution. The ancestry of the turtle, which evolved between 200 and 300 million years ago, has caused much scientific squabbling – its physiology suggesting a different branch of the family tree than its genes do.
“The evolutionary origin of turtles has confounded the understanding of vertebrate evolution,” the scientists wrote in a paper published in the Royal Society journal Biology Letters. Until the latest study, that is – which claims to have been the biggest of its kind. &ldquoOur study conclusively shows that the genetic story is that turtles are more closely related to birds and crocodilians,” research team member Nicholas Crawford from Boston University told AFP. Anatomy and fossil studies of turtles and their reptilian relatives generally place the shelled creatures in the family of lepidosaurs – snakes, lizards and tuataras (rare lizard-like animals). Genetic studies, however, say they have more in common with crocodiles and birds – which fall into the archosaur group of animals that also included the extinct land-bound dinosaurs. The latter finding has now been confirmed by the most exhaustive genetic study on the topic ever done, said Crawford – having gathered “ten times as much” information as previous research efforts.
More here.

Pin-Up Girls Before and After II, 1950s
via Retronaut by Chris

All images by Gil Elvgren
See the rest of the images here – and read the comments!!

Arts & Letters Daily – ideas, criticism, debate
Want to understand the states of the former Soviet Union? Scrap political science and get acquainted with Gogol, Chekhov, and Dostoyevsky... more

Bugs Galore, a new book illustrated by Bob Staake
via Boing Boing by Mark Frauenfelder
Bugs Galore is a kids’ book written by Peter Stein and illustrated by Bob Staake, one of my favorite illustrators (see my review of Look! A Book!, a video of Bob's unusual drawing process[went to 404 when I tested it] The making of one of his New Yorker covers, a review of The Donut Chef, his version of Struwwelpeter, and a review of The Orb of Chatham [this one not working either]) .
One neat thing about Bugs Galore, besides its funny/gross poetry and delightful artwork, is that Bob's six year old niece, Amelia Leonard, drew some of the bugs that appear in the book
Go to the Boing Boing post to see these:
(right). Jane and I had a great time seeking them out in the colourful, busy pages.
Below, a couple of sample pages, so you can hunt for Amelia's bugs, too.
Buy Bugs Galore on Amazon [was – is now £8.39]

Disaster Will Strike
via How-To Geek by Asian Angel
In this game your mission is to become a “master or mistress” of destruction as you attempt to destroy all the dinosaur eggs on each level of the game.
Are you ready to unleash madness and mayhem on dino-kind?
Asian Angel's walk-through is here or you believe you don’t need any help go straight to the game here.

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