LOL (lots of links)
the things I’m reading, watching, enjoying. internet diary.
inconclusive, unorganized, maybe awe-inspiring, maybe not
👀. 💅🏼. ✏️. 🤠. 🦋. 🔮. 🧬. 🗺. 🍭. 🤯. 🧠. 🦦
- Reddit post about why math is good. 11/22/2021.
- I found Todd Schneider’s website from his 2014 Slate article about the longest disambiguation pages on Wikipedia. Turns out he has a number of cool data projects including an N-gram analysis of The New York Times weddings section and a followup for Vox. 11/21/2021.
- crouton.net. 11/21/2021.
- This site summarizes terms of service and ranks them on privacy so that you don’t have to read them. 11/20/2021.
- all the best tech headlines compiled in one site. 11/20/2021.
- PLEASE, if you click one link, let it be this one. The Finnish government has a startlingly good social media presence and this video featuring “Epic Tax Guy” is the best thing I’ve ever seen in my life!!!!!!! 11/14/2021.
- Sabrina Imbler from NYT wrote about bee screams. 11/11/2021.
- brb redesigning my website to look like this. 11/10/2021.
- Good and critical and very smart NYT review of emrata book. 11/7/2021.
- Elegant interactive Wikimedia page on cognitive biases. 11/7/2021.
- The MarineTraffic website is a live world map that shows thousands of ships around the world. Click an icon on an icon for photos/info about the ship! 11/7/2021.
- On the job with a Wikipedian in Residence. 11/6/2021.
- Story in the Daily Mail about Joe Biden farting in front of Camilla. maybe he did it for Diana. 11/6/2021.
- website full of math art!!!! 10/5/2021.
- New York Post documents Pete Davidson’s relationships. 11/5/2021.
- What’s the deal with Instagram letterboards? this is a good essay. 11/5/2021
- All Things Insteresting published 35 cool maps. 11/4/2021.
- Proflie on Sydney Leathers (girl from the Anthony Weiner scandal). 11/3/2021.
- Website that changes design every time you blink. 11/2/2021.
- How easy it is to lie with statistics. I expected this Youtube video to rehash correlation vs. causation but it was a riveting 18 minutes. 11/1/2021.
- Bird makes Samsung notification sounds. 11/1/2021.
- Reddit thread on “cow names” in other languages (ex Bessie). 10/31/2021.
- Really wanna get my hands on the new Peter Thiel book but for now this essay by Anna Wiener will do the trick. 10/31/2021.
- Otters in Snow stamps!! 10/31/2021
- Neocities site with the best old-school horror gifs.
- AI-generated English words (they sound so real). 10/29/2021.
- Flowing data-- an essential bookmark. 10/29/2021.
- Wapo article about 10 hour long Youtube videos, “2011’s weirdest Youtube trend.”
- Rank your favorite fruits and compare with your friends! There’s something so wholesome and 2014-esque about this! 10/28/2021.
- Actor Timothee Chalamet used to have a YOutube channel where he custom painted x box controllers, reports Vice. 10/28/2021.
- Absolutely transfixed by this Smith College Library Rap, made by librarian Jodi Shaw. According to the caption, she spent two months making it and a week before orientation, her supervisor told her that she couldn’t show that she couldn’t rap because she was white. Also she made a big deal about how Smith was ‘hostile to white people.’ And then she changed the rap to add sections that defended herself (”I’ve got a good heart and I am a good mama and I did nothing to deserve this drama brought upon me solely because of my skin color”), and put it on Youtube. I find the rap cringey, the story even cringier, and I cannot stop thinking about it!! Apparently this was in the news in February but I missed it, I guess. 10/27/2021.
- Human + chimpanzee = humanzee. 10/27/2021.
- From the New Yorker a decade ago, an essay about a Michigan dentist and UMich alum who turned into a kickass marathoner! 10/25/2021.
- Blobfish actually look quite normal most of the time. 10/25/2021.
- Wikipedia Category:Nostalgia. 10/25/2021.
- Modernist post offices of Michigan! Loved these pictures of post offices built after WWII in rural Michigan towns. “While the federal government offered a set of standard floor plans and mechanical systems, communities were given a great deal of leeway with facade materials and details—imbuing a degree of local character to what would have otherwise been a homogenized building type.” 10/25/2021.
- Smallest stop motion film ever (made with carbon monoxide molecules!) 10/24/2021.
- What Uranus scientists think about your disgusting jokes. (Futurism) 10/24/2021.
- Reallyyy liked this article about how meth is changing chemically. Frankly, I really like chemistry! People forget that! 10/24/2021
- Vox had a really cute video to celebrate 10 million subscribers and their team gave shoutouts to people and/or websites that are really helpful! Things like connectedpapers.com, newspapers.com, worldradiohistory.com, Prelinger archives. It made me want to learn Adobe After effects and get better at making animations!!!! 10/23/2021
- It’s an email from your fridge! 10/23/2021
- Why pee comes out in those helical patterns. 10/22/2021.
- Draw an iceberg and see how it will float. 10/22/2021.
- The celebrity home / zillow gone wild guy Samir started taking a selfie a day and selling them as NFTs. 10/22/2021.
- Twitter thread about cows and beans that look like cows. 10/22/2021.
- The best of Billy Mays. 10/21/2021.
- The pitch deck for the Trump Media Group (?!) which Matt Levine discussed at length in his very good newsletter Money Stuff. 10/21/2021.
- Obviously billionaire are rich and obviously they don’t really pay their taxes but here are the specific ways they pass their wealth to their heirs tax-free. from Bloomberg. 10/21/2021.
- Unsolved mystery archive. 10/21/2021.
- unrepentent fungi thief. 10/18/2021.
- People left very interesting (and thorough?!) comments on my BoingBoing post about the word “orange.” 10/17/2021.
- View a random window from around the world. 10/17/2021.
- Tiktok as the Southern Gothic- newsletter from Dirt. 10/17/2021.
- IMPORTANT VIDEO 10/15/2021.
- On a weird website binge! pointerpointer.com. 10/15/2021.
- THE BEST MAPMAKING TOOL for graphs etc. 10/15/2021.
- Okay seems like this Brazilian website is *only* a photo of a dessert??? but there’s an email??? gonna have to investigate this a little bit more. 10/14/2021.
- Type in a movie, and this site will make a map of similar movies. 10/14/2021.
- The sideways dictionary defines tech terms with crowdsourced analogies. 10/14/2021.
- A bunch of AI projects all in one place. 10/14/2021.
- Run Windows 95 in your browser! 10/14/2021.
- Glow in the dark plants!!! unpaywalled paper describing the research is here. 10/14/2021.
- Why we use the word “redhead” not “orangehead”, and why “ginger” doesn’t make any sense. 10/13/2021.
- A “buttload” is an actual imperial form of measurement. 10/13/2021.
- Neural networks from scratch ! 10/11/2021
- The top baseball books on Goodreads are definitely about baseball! 10/11/2021.
- What better time to learn about the Fermi Paradox? Just click it!! 10/11/2021.
- This AI art almost moved me to tears? Weird night. The other art on the site is great too. 10/11/2021.
- A site about Ronald McDonald statues with PERFECT web design. 10/10/2021.
- Sudowrite, an AI writing tool!!!!!!!!!!! 10/10/2021.
- A woman bought old film from Ebay and developed it!!!! Essay in the Guardian. 10/10/2021.
- explaining the needless ubiquity of touchscreens in doctor’s offices and airports. the essay is kinda long. 10/9/2021.
- Johnny Appleseed was more boozy than wholesome and the “an apple a day” had a resurgence with the prohibition movement as apples were repurposed from precursor to hard cider to a standalone food. Essay in Smithsonian! 10/9/2021.
- Why everything is a trauma response. 10/5/2021.
- Horrified by the nightmare that is reverse logistics. This article in The Atlantic by Amanda Mull is all about online returns. 10/6/2021.
- Quartz article: Tea if by sea, cha if by land. 10/6/2021.
- long egg production. sooo important. 10/5/2021
- Why Ronald McDonald isn’t really around anymore. 10/5/2021.
- Funny Tiktok. 10/5/2021.
- Funny story about a garage door replacement. good dialogue. 10/4/2021.
- The Crowd Tangle Chrome extension tells you what platforms an article has been most-shared on, among other data pieces. 10/2/2021
- Good Vox article by my friend Rebecca Jennings about how Tiktok tells everyone they have ADHD!!!!!! 10/2/2021
- Brochure from Cyberslice, a company started in 1996 that allowed pizza parlors to accept online orders. 9/26/2021
- The 2001 research-heavy letter to the editor arguing that the Genesis creation story in which God made Eve from one of Adam’s ribs may be misinterpreted— instead, the paper argues that God made Eve from Adam’s penis bone. This would explain why human males are one of the only mammals withone a penis bone (I wanna call it a boner bone but the real name is baculum). 9/25/2021.
- The real research article called “The Taxonomy of Barney” from 1995!!!!!!! 9/24/2021.
- Why everyone should stop calling the iPhone “sexy”. 9/24/2021.
- The evolution of dinosaur-shaped chicken nuggets. 9/23/2021.
- Dunkin merch is kind of bizarre.... marathon Sauconys, a limited-edition bachelorette bathrobe, a branded tandem bike, this sweatshirt. 9/23/2021
- Vintage cocktail recipe books. 9/22/2021.
- I downloaded the fitness app Strava in 2017 and it changed my life. I was taking a post-high school gap year in Chicago where I didn’t have very many friends and I started running a LOT. Strava has challenges and segments that gamify the sport, and it connected me to the local running scene. Three marathons and one half Iron Man later, really can’t say enough about what it’s done for me. Anyway, here’s a long article in Outside Magazine about it. 9/18/2021.
- This doctor wants there to be more organ emojis. 9/17/2021.
- “Paradise Lost: The Rise and Ruin of Couchsurfing.com,” by Andrew Fedorov in Input. 9/17/2021.
- Cool data viz article by The Michigan Daily about responses to a survey by Umich freshmen! 9/16/2021.
- One of my favorite scammy topics to read about is MLMs. Like, I could get lost in the anti-MLM subreddit for hours. I just found pinktruth.com which exposes the dark side of being a Mary Kay seller. 9/16/2021.
- This guy wrote a fun article about the fake letters he wrote to Dear Prudence (one ended up on Tucker Carlson) 9/14/2021.
- The photos people left on an online “recipe” for ice cubes. hahaha. 9/14/2021.
- The dark side of certain “eco-fashion” and vegan fashion materials. 9/13/2021
- I love ex-Man Repeller writer Haley Nahman’s newsletter Maybe Baby, and she wrote about her moral dilemmas with Instagram influencing. I thought a few quotes from this week’s edition were too good not to share.
“Taylor Swift is the perfect avatar for this value system. Known most for her down-home approachability—posting photos of her cats, writing songs about her life, letting fans into her actual home—Swift is one of the quickest celebrities to align herself with faceless corporate behemoths. Apple, Capital One, CoverGirl, Diet Coke, Comcast, Sony, Verizon, Subway, Walgreens, American Express, Target. She almost never misses an opportunity to make more money. I like Swift’s music, but it seems a fairly cynical way of doing business, and she’s rarely critiqued for it despite being critiqued for nearly everything else.”
- Checkboxland, where everything is made of HTML checkbox elements. 9/12/2021
- There’s something beautiful about the web page for the Woolly Worm Festival in North Carolina. 9/10/2021
- A round up of very good Letterboxd reviews of the new Cinderella movie
- Inside the surreal world of “made for advertising” websites. 9/10/2021
- This TikTok account is just videos of someone pouring cleaning products into a toilet. 9/10/2021
- The Rise and Fall of Mars Hill podcast explores mega churches, 2000s masculinity, and more. 9/5/2021.
- I started writing like five posts a day for Boing Boing so now a lot of the things I would be adding here are ending up there. Anyway, I’m obsessed with this interview with the creative director of Webkinz that my friend Jackson Weimer did for Forbes!!!! Welcome to the Curio Shop. Hope you find what you’re looking for. It’s a super long read but really fun and nostalgic. 9/5/2021.
- Miles Klee wrote about how he stopped taking his phone to the bathroom for Mel Magazine. 8/31/2021.
- New York Mag article on the new Gawker. “How long do we think this is even going to last? There’s no ads even on the site yet. It’s like a snow globe right now.” 8/30/2021.
- Nestflix, the website about shows within shows. 8/29/2021.
- Garfield minus Garfield. 8/28/2021
- A search engine for 30 Rock created by a Twitter user named @Phylan. You type in whatever you can think of and it will pull up captioned screenshots from episodes where that word was said. 8/27/2021.
- https://aiweirdness.com - a blog run by Janelle Shane, where she uses artificial intelligence to generate strange and hilarious cakes, modern art, pickup lines, paint colours, candy hearts and more. 8/27/2021
- Here’s a very interesting article about how every movie looks kind of orange and blue. 8/27/2021.
- And an awesome essay/interactive visualisation about how repetitive songs are by the Pudding, to complete the trilogy to the other two cool music articles already in the LOL (and an equally interesting accompanying video by Vox!). 8/27/2021
- This article shows what it would look like if film directors designed your home office. 8//27/2021
- All the essays by Collin Nissan, my favorite humor writer. 8/27/2021.
- NYT article interviewing Claire McNear who reports on Jeopardy! for the Ringer and exposed former-host-pick Mike Richards’ inappropriate comments. I love Jeopardy and I love Jeopardy reporting and I’ve loved Claire McNear for a few years!! 8/25/2021
- Conspiracy theory about OK Soda, Coca Cola’s bizarre, short-lived 90s drink marketed to the counterculture. 8/25/2021
- Inside Hook was one of the first real places that ever interviewed me about Depths of Wikipedia so I feel an odd loyalty to them. Anyway, they have a kickass roundup of the 80 best single operator newsletters. Read the list. 8/23/2021
- Essay about cultures that incorporate whistling in their language “Speaking In Whistles”. 8/23/2021
- Some Wikipedia volunteer made an interactive webpage comparing the heights of tall things, all for strangers to enjoy. 8/20/2021
- Jonathan Safran Foer, who wrote Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and Eating Animals, has a bunch of weird conversation starters on his tumblr. Maybe fun to ask your friends if you’re on drugs or feeling profound idk. 8/19/2021
- YouTube channel of hip hop lo-fi beats exclusively set to Simpsons scenes. 8/19/2021
- Toilets with threatening auras on Twitter. 8/17/2021
- Essay called “I didn’t know how to write about my sister’s death so I had AI do it for me” 8/17/2021
- Ughhh new Gawker is so visually appealing and addicting and all around good!!!! 8/13/2021.
- The US Social Security Administration estimates I’ll live to 85.8, which I found out from this calculator. 8/9/2021
- Cool personal website for someone named Reed Kavner with a bunch of cool projects. I love finding people in the comedy x computers x education niche that I love!!! 8/6/2021
- Aesthetics wiki about McBling. 8/2/2021
- Attention Kmart shoppers: someone just emailed me a bunch of cool spots on the Internet Archive (thanks Mark!) and my favorites are this collection of Kmart background music and this collection of VHS intros. 8/2/2021
- A pretty fun and punchy essay about why English is so weird and inconsistant. I’m the type of person that finds spelling/grammar errors completely permissible (occasionally even endearing) because our conventions are just so arbitrary. 8/2/2021
- Website with logos drawn from memory. 8/2/2021
- A 2013 Reddit post with real-life cheats. Bookmark this!!!! 7/23/2021
- In 2016, someone analyzed 10,000+ Craigslist missed connections for Vox. 7/22/2021
- A quaint 35-second video of a man doing what we all fantasize about: deleting his entire computer. 7/22/2021
- Let’s all take refuge in this compilation of the world’s worst websites. 7/22/2021
- I met @newyorknico yesterday, “New York’s unofficial talent scout” who showcases odd, interesting, and heartwarming New Yorkers on social media. A friend of mine got invited to his barbeque, and I tagged along. After I met him, someone told me about an odd camp of people that claims that Nico shouldn’t have a platform because he “wasn’t born in New York” (he was) and because he went to private school and therefore “can’t relate to real New Yorkers”. There’s always something to hate people for-- even the best people. Anyway, there are a number of hateblogs for xkcd, the STEM-focused internet comic that I love, and they’re delightfully petty. 7/19/2021
- A timeline of the top 40 viral videos. 7/19/2021
- This unconventional programmer makes silly, amusing, sometimes frivolous projects. I love them. Here’s one that makes 30,000+ variations of the “guys say they know a place and then take you to....” meme. 7/18/2021
- I almost never watch TV shows all the way through, so this website which gives the best episodes for each tv show is great. 7/15/2021
- Top 50 most fascinating people in Brooklyn article from Brooklyn Magazine. 7/13/2021
- An old blog about things that look like ducks. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck.... etc. 7/10/2021
- “I Kissed a Girl” to “Call Me By Your Name”, a data-driven exploration of queerness in music in The Pudding. 7/04/2021
- For NYT Magazine, what six families spend in a month. 7/03/2021
- The internet's original source code was sold as an NFT for $5.4M this week. 7/01/2021
- I watched a few episodes of the documentary “This is Pop” from Netflix and my favorite was the episode on Autotune-- it landed such kickass interviews and makes you love T-Pain!!!
Toucan is a new Chrome extension which switches certain words to your language of choice, using spaced interval repitition to help you learn a language without trying. 6/27/2021. One Time Secret offers an alternative to sharing passwords or credit card numbers via text message with your friends or family. The site creates a unique link which is deleted upon viewing. 6/27/2021.
- This Bloomberg piece “Bland New World” is a meticulously-researched dive into the millenial DTC brands who arm themselves with generic branding (to take on The Man). 6/24/2021.
The Wikipedia page for Alexandra Petri. I love (80% admire, 20% envy) her. She was the youngest WaPo columnist in 2010, lost Jeopardy and wrote about it, and has had a bazillion frivolous projects to her name (also, her roommate at Harvard was Megan Amram). She once wrote “My goal is to be weirder than everyone else and hope that no one stops me. So far no one has.” Great Reddit AMA here. I have jealous admiration of her life and brain!! 6/24/2021.
“Nostalgia Is a Hell of a Drug,” on Gawker’s imminent return, this time led by Leah Finnegan (from The Outline, RIP). 6/24/2021.
The seven-year-old Reddit AMA of double-dick dude. 6/24/2021.
︎ If you’re bored enough to scroll through this you should instead scroll through Wikipedia’s List of Common Misconceptions so you can become an “aaactually” guy. 6/22/2021.
- The Letterboxed reviews on this 10 hour shot of paint drying are shockingly profound. Maybe when you stare at a wall for 10 hours you have epiphanies... I must try this! 6/22/2021.
- How to Party 1950s Instructional Video- edifying! 6/21/2021.
- Bouncing DVD logo to project on the wall at parties or stare at as a form of meditation. 6/21/2021.
- Why your parents suck at texting , an 8-minute Youtube video on the ways capitalization, punctuation, and spacing choice in informal writing (twitter, texting, etc) can be highly developed and incredibly personal, like a form of digital handwriting. 6/21/2021.
“Robert Sapolsky on the toxic intersection of poverty and stress,” an Ezra Klein Show podcast episode. Listened to this one on a run and kept stopping to take notes. He’s a ridiculously compelling speaker and I was super into this discussion on policy, the justice system, and cultural commentary around poverty-- all through the lens of neurobiology. 6/19/2021.
A newsletter of the most-edited Wikipedia articles of the week. Each Friday, the Wikipedia-data-duo behind Hatnote send an email of the most edited pages and most active discussions. It’s an interesting way to reflect on the news (in an “oh right, that happened this week” way). 6/18/2021.
The ultimate “which character are you” quiz, which is like 100 Buzzfeed quizzes in one, and seems a little bit more reputable. And it only takes 5-10 minutes! One strategic (nefarious?) way to learn how your friends and/or love interests rank themselves on various personality scales is to ask for their results link and mouse over the dots on their graph. Ideal for moments when you want to know if he doesn’t like you back or if he just isn’t very emotional (and you’re not mature/invested enough to ask directly lol). 6/18/2021.
Sending your friends ecards for every occasion. 123greetings has a Web 1.0 kitch feel that I’m obsessed with. 6/13/2021.
The “What font is this” chrome extension which, upon mousing over any font, tells you the size, font, hex number, weight, line height, and more. 6/12/2021.
The Sal Kahn interview on How I Built This. I can only ever remember my mom calling three men hot, and they were, inexplicably, my dad, Derek Jeter, and Sal Kahn. Kahn is hilarious and humble and genuine here unlike some other interviewees who take themselves too seriously. Did you know he was in a heavy metal band in high school which disbanded when he went to MIT? That he was raised in poverty in Louisiana by an immigrant single mother?! This might be my favorite podcast episode in months. 6/12/2021.
Two weird-internet worlds collided when I found out that one of the admins of the (genius, perfect) Instagram account Shitty New Yorker Captions is ALSO the author or this riveting 2011 read called A Conspiracy of Hogs the McRib . The account admins did a 20-minute radio interview with the New Yorker cartoon editor Emma Allen a few years ago and it was so funny I giggled! 6/12/2021.
This out of office message generator pulls from Wikipedia to keep your coworkers thoroughly entertained and inspired. You can put a random link, a random quote, or both next to your generic “out of office” message! 6/10/2021.
The Pudding put together a cool viz ranking rappers by unique words in their lyrics. 6/10/2021.
Another link from The Pudding: most hated and most loved things, according to data from the dating app Ranker. From the top of the list: Jokes, puppies, foreplay, animals, cuddling, pets, free samples, ice cream, the internet, Saturday. Also interesting are the polarizing topics: overachievers, Buzzfeed, talking about feelings, McDonalds, pulling all nighters, wasabi, Twitter, double dates, airports, sloppy kisses, black coffee. 6/9/2021.
The State of the Species, an essay which reminds you that humanity is a little blip in the history of time and puts you in your place!!!! all time favorite