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Friday, December 16, 2016

Friday links

Here, on one sheet of paper, is a map of the entire internet as of 1973.

The Island Where Donkeys Wear Pajamas.

Advice from c. 1200: How to Survive the Winter. Don't forget to lay off the purging and blood-letting, and keep your hands and feet covered in wolf grease.

Humans and Cats Have a Strange, Complicated History.

Digital Incarceration: The Finger Pillory.

ICYMI, Wednesday's links are here, and include lots of ugly Christmas sweaters (and DIY instructions for making your own), how animals cope with cold, debunking Kwanzaa, and a 1562 map of America showing the homes of giants, mermaids, dragons and cannibals. Also, T'was the Overnight Before Christmas: the merry tale of how air cargo deregulation led to Amazon.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

A movie is being made about Dunkirk - here's the trailer

The evacuation of large elements of the British and French armies from Dunkirk (wiki) on the French coast, which took place during the period from May 26 through June 4, 1940, followed their defeat by the German blitzkrieg that overwhelmed France during the early months of World War II. The sudden German attack through Belgium on May 10 had quickly rolled up the French and British left wing and surrounded it in a small enclave on the English Channel opposite Dover. 

In a largely improvised but brilliantly executed maritime operation that mustered both the Royal Navy and civilian small craft of every kind, nearly 340,000 British and French troops - nearly 90 percent of those invested - were ultimately withdrawn, despite incessant German armored and air attacks.

Dunkirk was, of course, the inspiration for Winston Churchill's "We shall fight on the beaches...we shall never surrender" speech:
We shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end. We shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing in the air, we shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender.

More on Dunkirk here, including a contemporaneous newsreel.

Excellent cartoon: "The Talk", because if you don't explain quantum computing to your kids, someone else will

Scott Aaronson and Zach Weinersmith at SMBC (Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal):

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Wednesday links

Lots of ugly Christmas sweaters, instructions for making your own, plus ugly Christmas sweater suits, and here's how to make Ugly Sweater Ornaments.

CIA Declassifies Maps from 75 Years of Surveillance.

T'was the Overnight Before Christmas: The Merry Tale of How Air Cargo Deregulation Led To Amazon. Related (by the underlying poem): T'was the Night Before Kwanzza, and more of Kathy Shaidle's Kwanzaa-debunking collection

ICYMI, Monday's links are here, and include Mother Teresa's meeting with then-NYC Mayor Guliani to lobby for a parking permit, the pre-Seinfeld origins of Festivus, Teddy Roosevelt's impact of football, and a new Guinness World Record-setting Rube Goldberg machine that takes 412 steps to light a Christmas tree.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Monday links

Before Seinfeld: The Origins of Festivus.

ICYMI, Friday's links are here, and include (without limitation) lots of really bad nativity sets, the history of the chicken dance, Pretend to Be a Time Traveler Day, and how McDonald's got started.