Europe has got the measles

Europe has got the measles

Anti-vax shenanigans has lowered Europe’s average vaccination rate below the threshold to adequately provide for herd-immunity. Coming off a record low in 2016, 2018 is headed for the stars! Via Al-Jazeera: A record number of measles cases has been recorded in Europe, the World Health Organization (WHO) has said. More than 41,000 people have been infected and at least 37 have died as a result of the contagious disease in 2018 so far. It is the highest number of infections this decade, beating last year’s number of 23,927. “Following the…

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This deck of cards will spark small, IRL experiences

This deck of cards will spark small, IRL experiences

The fabulous Lea Redmond of Leafcutter Designs (previously) has launched a brand new project. It’s called Lively Matter and it’s a 52-card activity deck to create grand adventures and experiences out of the ordinary. She writes: Each card in the Lively Matter deck gives instructions for a tangible, mini adventure that you can do by yourself or with friends. The activities are delightful, thoughtful, and repeatable. For example: get a gum ball at a vending machine, then pay special attention to that color for the rest of the day… The activities…

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PETA frees animal crackers from their cages

PETA frees animal crackers from their cages

For more than 100 years, the animals on the Barnum’s Animal Crackers’ packaging were depicted in a circus cage. Now, thanks to a request from PETA, that has all changed. The animal rights organization asked Mondelez, Nabisco’s parent company, to remove the bars in a letter sent in 2016, according to AP: “Given the egregious cruelty inherent in circuses that use animals and the public’s swelling opposition to the exploitation of animals used for entertainment, we urge Nabisco to update its packaging in order to show animals who are free…

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AI will try to paint what you tell it to, often generating surreal horrors

AI will try to paint what you tell it to, often generating surreal horrors

A research team wrote about how they trained a machine-learning AI to generate images from text descriptions. When fed birds as its dataset, it got very good at painting birds… … But the more you feed it, the crazier it gets. More collected here, and you can try it yourself thanks to Chris Valenzuela’s online implementation. Here are my efforts. Read full story

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Police officer who breastfed a malnourished baby at hospital hailed a hero

Police officer who breastfed a malnourished baby at hospital hailed a hero

Argentinian police officer Celeste Jaqueline Ayala was on duty at a Buenos Aires hospital when she heard the incessant cries of a baby there. She went to investigate and learned that the infant was malnourished. Officer Ayala is the mother of an infant herself, so she sat down and breastfed the hungry baby. Now she is now a hero in the eye of the police department and the public. From WGNTV: Days after the photo went viral, Cristian Ritondo, Vice President of the legislature of Buenos Aires, met with Ayala…

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The Beach Boys’ “Do It Again” with the delay removed from the drums

The Beach Boys’ “Do It Again” with the delay removed from the drums

Do It Again is one of my favorite songs, not least because of the distinctive delay effect applied to the drums by sound engineer Stephen Desper, giving it its weird blend of electronic fuzz and nostalgia (“like something from another planet“). Here it is with the delay effect removed. Being honest with myself, I have to say it’s better this way. But then, I wasn’t there in ’68.Read full story

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New panda mom doesn’t know she’s raising twins

New panda mom doesn’t know she’s raising twins

Zookeepers are tricking a new panda mom of twins into thinking she’s got only one cub, so both will survive. In this BBC Earth clip, a new panda mother doesn’t realize she’s raising twins. According to the narrator, who is none other than David Attenborough, it’s not unusual for pandas to birth multiples. What is unusual is for mama pandas to take care of more than one panda cub when she has. Normally, she’ll abandon one (or more) of them so that the other will live. Attenborough says that it’s…

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