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Extribulum: The Arbiters Of Taste Also Sell Ammunition

Posted by val0525


Yes, Wal-Mart shoppers read. In fact, Wal-Mart and Target are two of’s biggest competitors. Earlier this year, Wal-Mart was fourth in sales as a distribution channel behind Barnes & Noble, Borders, and Their sales stats have been dropping steadily (in 2004 they could account for as much as 20% of a book’s sales) but they’re still right up there. Wal-Mart outsells all independent bookstores in the US collectively.

As of April this year, Wal-Mart was the fourth-largest distributor of books in the United States.

via The Arbiters Of Taste Also Sell Ammunition.

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Honey: doesn’t contain the parts that make it good for you

Posted by rabidchild

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Over 21,000 sign petition seeking “vapid response,” cookies

Posted by rabidchild

Ars Technica

via Over 21,000 sign petition seeking "vapid response," cookies.

Over 21,000 sign petition seeking "vapid response," cookies

A feature on the White House's website designed to encourage citizens to interact with the administration has become what every very public forum on the Internet eventually becomes: a target for trolls.

The "We the People" petition feature of, launched in September, is intended as a way for citizens to petition the Obama administration for action on specific topics of concern. Citizens can register an account on the site, and create petitions or sign those of others. When a site user creates a petition, a unique URL is generated for the petition that can be spread via social media or e-mail; the petition becomes visible on the White House website once it hits 150 signatures within 30 days. If a petition gets over 25,000 e-signatures in 30 days, it will be reviewed by White House staff for an official response, according to the latest version of the tool's "terms of participation."

That threshold was originally set at launch at 5,000 signatures. But the administration has been forced to tune its thresholds to deal with the popularity of the petition tool, such as petitions to acknowledge that aliens are among us and to "stop lying."

The tone of the White House's response to many of the petitions has spawned the latest rapidly-rising request for a White House response, so far signed by over 21,000 registered site users.


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I Do Not Think That Word Means What You Think It Means, Hypocrisy Edition

Posted by rabidchild

Paul Krugman

via I Do Not Think That Word Means What You Think It Means, Hypocrisy Edition.



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Google “Do a Barrel Roll” Right Now [Starfox]

Posted by rabidchild


via Google "Do a Barrel Roll" Right Now [Starfox].

Google "Do a Barrel Roll" Right Now Do it. Right now. Why are you still here?

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Minor Quakes In the UK Likely Caused By Fracking

Posted by devlogic

"Non-conventional extraction of hydrocarbons is the next wave of production, including natural gas and oil – at least according to its advocates. One of the most controversial of the technologies being used is hydraulic fracture drilling, or 'fracking.' Energy companies have been gobbling up Google ad words to push the view that the technology is 'proven' and 'safe,' while stories about the damage continue to surface. Adding to the debate are two small tremors in the UK — below 3.0, so very small – that were quite likely the result of fracking there. Because the drilling cracks were shallow, this raises concerns that deeper cracks near more geologically active areas might lead to quakes that could cause serious damage."

via Slashdot.

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R2-D2 Thinks He’s Link, Battles Ganon On a…Bantha? What the Hell? [Fan Art]

Posted by rabidchild


via R2-D2 Thinks He's Link, Battles Ganon On a...Bantha? What the Hell? [Fan Art].

R2-D2 Thinks He's Link, Battles Ganon On a...Bantha? What the Hell? [Fan Art]

R2-D2 Thinks He's Link, Battles Ganon On a...Bantha? What the Hell?Artist Andy J Hunter throws Star Wars and The Legend of Zelda together to see what sticks.

The result is R2-D2 as Link. Fighting Phantom Ganon. Who's riding a Bantha.

Best not to ask too many questions.

You can see more of Hunter's mashup work at his personal site.

R2-D2 Thinks He's Link, Battles Ganon On a...Bantha? What the Hell?


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The Kinect Effect

Posted by rabidchild

The Kinect Effect

The is hands down, the best Microsoft commercial I have ever seen. I has soul. It has spirit. It has open optimism about what a company and creative enthusiasts can do together. They are even showcasing kinect projects on the official website


My hats off the the tens of thousands of creative developers who have explored the wide ranging uses of Kinect and, of course, to Microsoft & Xbox for seeing that it is a very positive thing to embrace. Yes, Kinect is a product that ultimately must make money through games and applications. But, it can also have a remarkably positive impact on our culture.

Best $3000I ever spent.

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Indexed: Happy Movember

Posted by val0525


via Happy Movember.


Occupy Oakland Shuts down the port

Posted by izlosst

(11-02) 20:18 PDT OAKLAND -- Thousands of people jammed into downtown Oakland on Wednesday for a general strike called by Occupy Oakland to protest economic inequity and corporate greed - then marched en masse to the Port of Oakland and shut it down.

As many as 5,000 people, by police estimates, clogged the main port entrance on Middle Harbor Road and seven other gates as the sun went down, chanting slogans and halting all truck traffic going in or out.

"Whose port? Our port!" many yelled, while dozens climbed on top of the idled trucks and waved signs.

The few police officers within sight kept a considerable distance, and the waterfront took on the air a combination protest and street carnival, with everyone from office workers to gutter punks standing alongside each other denouncing inequality.

Port officials said in a statement that maritime operations were "effectively shut down." Dozens of trucks sat idling at the port, unable to enter or leave.

"It's a victory," exulted one protester, 21-year-old Oakland art student Umar Shareef. "To get all these people together as one unit is amazing."

Andrez Quintanilla, a 28-year-old truck driver, was trying to drop off a load at the port but was forced to cool his engines outside the entrance.

"It's good what they're doing," he said. "They're trying to make sure everyone has their rights, but I wish they would let me go. I need to go home."

Occupy Oakland, the activists who have camped outside City Hall for nearly a month, originally targeted the port to show solidarity with union workers embroiled in a dispute in Longview, Wash. But to most of the thousands of protesters who flowed west from around Occupy Oakland's nerve center in Frank Ogawa Plaza, it was a finale to a long day of outrage at the widening economic divisions in America.

Day of activism

The first general strike called in Oakland since 1946 was largely peaceful. Young activists, middle-class wage earners, students and homeless people mingled good-naturedly as they held rallies and meditation meetings, heard speeches and marched to protest at dozens of downtown businesses and banks.

An ice cream truck handed out treats with protest slogans, and a flash mob danced to the old disco hit, "I Will Survive."

Adam Bergman took his two children and one of their friends out of their Oakland elementary school for the protest. Concerned about violence, Bergman said he wanted to stay at the back of the pack.

"I think it is important to show them what's happening right now," he said. "It's part of our civic duty to support freedom of speech ... to stand up for the 99 percent of us."

There were some instances of vandalism, which interim Police Chief Howard Jordan said had been instigated by "60 to 70 anarchists ... bent on causing problems."

When protesters smashed windows at banks, a grocery and two small businesses, videos showed the instigators were mostly wearing black, with bandanas over their faces.

Jordan said in an evening press conference that there had been no arrests.

Mini city

Within Frank Ogawa Plaza outside City Hall, organizers expanded the Occupy Oakland encampment into a mini-city with medical pavilions, meditation tents and children's zones. Lines for the portable toilets were about 20 deep throughout the day, and the line for free food often had 50 people.

In between marches the plaza's amphitheater filled with more than 1,000 people as poets and others spoke to lambaste everything from excessive bank profits to capitalism itself.

"Today is about saying no to the 1 percent," said Cat Brooks, co-chairwoman of the Onyx Organizing Committee, an Oakland grassroots organization.

Few uniformed police officers were on the streets, although some showed up outside at least one bank to talk to the crowd about staying calm.

"Oakland has an opportunity tonight to show the country and the world what peaceful expression can look like," said City Administrator Deanna Santana. "The world is watching."

Businesses closed

In a statement, Mayor Jean Quan said she supported the goals of the protesters but noted that many residents would not be participating in the strike.

"We must make sure that those who have to go to work and keep their businesses open are able to do so," Quan said.

Some businesses did stay open, with a few of those bringing food to the protesters - but many downtown stores also closed for the day.

The closed stores included national chains such as Rite-Aid, Tully's Coffee and Foot Locker. Some of the stores that remained open would only accept cash to honor the strike and avoid sending credit card fees to multinational corporations and banks.

Major labor unions in the city expressed support for the movement, and though they could not legally strike for the day many workers said they would take paid time off to participate.

Port officials said about 35 to 40 longshoremen - or a little more than 10 percent - did not show up for the day shift.

Bank protests

The tensest moments during the daylight hours came when dozens of protesters clustered in front of bank branches, which quickly shut their doors and let in only a few customers at a time. Demonstrators pounded on the doors, chanted slogans including, "Don't feed the greed," and drew graffiti with the same sentiments on windows and walls.

Protesters smashed windows around 3 p.m. at a Wells Fargo Bank branch at 12th Street and Broadway, a Bank of America near Lake Merritt, a dry-cleaning store and a financial office on Webster Street near 21st Street, and at a Whole Foods store on Bay Place - where vandals spray painted "Strike" in large letters on the outside wall.

A spokesman at Whole Foods, which closed the store after the vandalism, said it had allowed employees to take part in the general strike.

Several protesters said the vandals did not speak for them.

"This is not what we represent," said Erin Sitt, a student at Academy of Art University in San Francisco. "You can't let a couple of sour apples ruin the bunch."

The downtown vandalism declined as darkness came. Hundreds of protesters remained behind in front of City Hall, giving speeches and waving banners, but virtually everyone else wound up at the port.

Teachers participate

More than 300 Oakland public school teachers did not show up to work, and others used the day to teach their students about the dynamics of protest. Most who took the day off had alerted the district in advance that they would be observing the general strike, but a shortage of substitutes forced some classes to be consolidated, district officials said.

Pat Kaplan, who teaches fourth grade at Bridges Academy in East Oakland, was waiting at the Fruitvale Station to board a BART train and wearing a military uniform emblazoned with the title "Gen. Huelga" - "general strike" in Spanish.

"We've had tremendous cuts at our school and lost four staff people," Kaplan said. "We have no field trips and we have to ask parents for paper and pencils, but banks made billions of dollars this year."

City officials allowed public employees to take the day off, but every Oakland police officer was required show up for work. About 5 percent of city employees called in to say they would be taking either an unpaid furlough or paid vacation day, officials said.

Chronicle staff writers Jill Tucker, Carolyn Jones, Will Kane, Joe Garofoli, Carolyn Said, Justin Berton and Henry K. Lee contributed to this report.

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