Latest stories - Mark Frauenfelder

Yesterday   Peter Leigh, known as the Nostalgia Nerd on his YouTube channel, has a cool new hardcover book out called The Nostalgia Nerd’s Retro Tech: Computers, Consoles and Games, which is exactly what it says it is - photos and descriptions of gear from the 1970s-1990s.

2 Days Ago   Kano is a Raspberry Pi based computer system. It comes with everything you need besides an HDMI monitor. I love the keyboard with the included trackpad.

2 Days Ago   Watching this 1987 video of two Radio Shacks (one with Madonna music in the background) makes it clear that 30 years can be a long, long time ago.

2 Days Ago   High school science teacher Bruce Yeany says, "Here are a few more example of balancing toys that are made with simple materials. Making these types of toys have been especially popular with students.

2 Days Ago   "Katamari" is the Japanese word for "clod" or "lump," and people familiar with the Katamari Damacy video game franchise know that the object is to created a giant clod of stuff by rolling it around like a snowball, picking up increasingly larger objects over time.

2 Days Ago   Sam and Simone realized they could build a house for the same amount they would have spent on a year's rent in Australia. So they did, in one of their parents' backyard.

3 Days Ago   I'm very sad to hear that Pete Shelley, leader of The Buzzcocks, died of a heart attack today. He was 63. From The Guardian: The band formed part of the UK’s punk scene and have been closely associated with it ever since.

3 Days Ago   Nicole says: "Today's all-new episode of Vox Media's 'Consider It,' kicks off with Stephen Miller's uncle, David Glosser, who says that if his dead grandfather were to hear about his nephew's immigration policies 'he'd be spinning in his grave.'" Read the rest

3 Days Ago   I bought a second Contigo Autoseal Chill Stainless Steel Water Bottle (24 ounces) because it's on sale today (plus there's a 5% off coupon) and I really like the one we have.

3 Days Ago   First, take this quiz to see how good you are at distinguishing between real faces and fake ones made with generative adversarial networks (GANs). Then, read this article that teaches you how to spot the fakes.

3 Days Ago   Mack (9) and John (13) have lived in Korea for about 4 years. They speak Korean fluently and with good accents, and now appear on television frequently.

3 Days Ago   This morning David and I were texting each other about the Brady Bunch, which we often do because we love the show and so does every member of our families.

4 Days Ago   In 1998 I profiled artist/inventor Chuck Hoberman for Wired (read it here). It was a fun article to write because Chuck is brilliant, and very nice.

4 Days Ago   Most HD television sets have a motion smoothing setting to reduce blur, but if it is applied to movies, it makes the movies look like a soap opera.

4 Days Ago   Scotch Tear-by-Hand Tape costs a bit more than regular packing tape, but the convenience of not having to tear the tape (and your fingers) with a dispenser is more than worth the additional expense.

4 Days Ago   Our washing machine chatters and shakes so much that sometimes I think it's going to break apart. (In fact, I hear it shaking right now.) I adjust the feet frequently (why do they make it so hard to turn the feet to raise and lower them?), but it doesn't do a lot of good.

4 Days Ago   Lucas Brar plays Gershwin's "Summertime" on a guitar, starting with a simple bass line, them adding increasing complexity as he continues. Image: YouTube Read the rest

4 Days Ago   The sushi-making scene is one of many standout scenes in Wes Anderson's Isle of Dogs. Now we can see how the sushi-making scene was made, thanks to this time lapse video of animators moving the sushi ingredients and the hands of the sushi chef.

4 Days Ago   Hokkaido is the northernmost of Japan's major islands. It's here that the practice of racing giant draft horses is being kept alive. The horses race against each other by dragging heavy sleds (weighing between 900 pounds and 2000 pounds).

5 Days Ago   “If the Crown Prince went in front of a jury, he would be convicted in 30 minutes,” Senator Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) said after a closed-door Senate briefing with CIA Director Gina Haspel.

5 Days Ago   "It’s aggressively tangy, like Kool-Aid made from pine cones." That's how The Atlantic's Olga Khazan describes the smell of the men's body wash she used during a recent shower (it was her boyfriend's body wash; she'd run out of her own lavender-scented liquid soap).

5 Days Ago   Tim of Grand Illusions demonstrates a neat little trick, called the Magic Sword, in which a piece of solid metal seems to pass through another piece of metal.

5 Days Ago   Long before #MeToo became the catalyst for a women's movement about sexual assault — and a decade before the fall of Harvey Weinstein, Bill Cosby and U.S.

6 Days Ago   Peter Brown was born in Philly, but he made the mistake of visiting Jamaica for one day, years ago on a cruise. But that gave U.S.

6 Days Ago   When Tod Kurt of ThingM recommended these reversible Micro USB cables, I bought a 3-pack on Amazon. They really do work. Both the USB male plug and the micro plug can be inserted without regard to the orientation, like a USB C plug.

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