Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's that time of year again. Are you sick of that phrase? You're not alone! People are also sick of words like bailout and maverick and carbon footprint.

It really IS the end of the year, however, and Filmoculous has gathered all the "best of" lists together in one place.

Tomorrow begins the Year of Astronomy! I know Cassandra is thrilled. Speaking of space, apparently it really messes with spiders' heads. And speaking of Cassandra, she's sent in links on the science behind psychic phenomena, a new (to us) website on astrology, and an article on "Pop EP," or pop evolutionary psychology.

Happy new year, everyone! May 2009 be the year of awesoments as well as astronomy.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The fabulous Dark Roasted Blend now has a constantly-updated page on steampunk. Huzzah!

I was poking around in search of others interested in both steampunk and transhumanism, and found the Traveler's Steampunk Blog had just posted about such things. Synchronicity at work! (Also note the entry on dieselpunk, which is another fave of mine. Where are the robots, I ask you?)

Good for dieselpunks, steampunks, and anyone of a mind to trap/annoy something/someone: instructions on making a net-shooting gun. I'm tempted.

Jess Nevins, a fellow librarian who is well-known in the neo-Victorian world, is posting a penny blood from 1876 titled "On the Queen's Service." Good stuff.

And lastly, this is not steampunk at all but ties into the way we think of gender now and in the future: a fascinating article and accompanying slideshow on the Muxe of Mexico, who live in "a socially sanctioned netherworld between the two genders."

Monday, December 29, 2008

Welcome back! I think the bugs are all fixed, and even though this week will be erratic due to holidays and whatnot, we are back on schedule. This means arty links for your Monday!

Painting: He lived five hundred years ago, but we're still discovering new sketches by da Vinci. These were on the back of a painting.

Photography: A Flickr slideshow titled "Please Don't Divorce Us" puts faces to the Proposition 8 fight.

Writing and film: A 1937 WPA filmed interview with H.P. Lovecraft is the first I've seen of the author in person, so to speak.

Speaking of the WPA, do we need a Secretary of Culture?

Film and music and art and more: Mashed in Plastic is a tribute to David Lynch. They have a YouTube channel for their video work as well.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

If you can read this, it means Blogger finally patched up whatever fell apart yesterday, and posts are going up again! Hooray and happy holidays to all!

Also, the link of the day, of course, is NORAD and Google teaming up to track Santa's progress around the globe. Maybe we should look into supersonic reindeer as a green alternative to travel in the coming year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Hey kids! Want to see a working model of the Antikythera Mechanism? Sure you do!

If you're still looking for some last-minute gift ideas, Villainess soaps look like an excellent idea for the Neo-Victorian in your life. If there is one, that is. If the recipient is more of a tinkerer, perhaps you could interest him or her in this Tesla car alarm. (The entire Tesla Down Under site is amazing, but also bandwidth-heavy, so go in with some warning.)

Swiped from Matt of Enter the Octopus: a weblog devoted to mustaches of the 19th century.

And finally, Danny points out that Oddee has done a whole entry on gorgeous libraries, and as I won't be updating on Thursday, I send you there now!

Monday, December 22, 2008

It's snowing in Seattle, and somehow these amazing snow sculptures are possible there. This must be super-special Seattle snow or something, because this has never worked in boring old Midwest/New England snow.

The New York Public Library has joined the Flickr Commons group, and they have an incredible amount to share.

I think I would understand street maps better if they followed the subway motif, like this map of London British motorways. [Edit: UK reader Julie points out, quite rightly, that the map is all of Great Britain, not just London. I should not post until I've had coffee.]

Kaiser Wilhelm II's Prussian palace is going to be rebuilt in Berlin. Prussia will rise again!

Discovery of the day: NOTCOT is chock-full of interesting bits. Do go check it out.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Links from others! Thanks, everyone. Apologies for the erratic posting this week -- we'll be back on a more regular schedule on Monday.

For the Cincinnati folks, however, Saturday is the night we bid farewell to the Club Creatures by having a crazy dance party for them. Come out and send them off to NYC in style!

From Holly: kung-fu squirrels! Yahhh!

From Cassandra: volcanic eruptions on Earth may have killed off the dinosaurs, and there may be ice volcanoes on Saturn's moon. (The existence of dinosaurs on Saturn's moon is still in doubt.)

If you appreciate the shoe-throwing shenanigans of the past week, you may wish to contribute a photo to Thank You For Throwing Your Shoe. Just a suggestion!

And lastly, I am not sure how I made it this long without hearing about Parry Gripp, but I'm remedying that posthaste.

Have a spiffy weekend, everyone! See you Monday.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Here at Spooky Librarians, we are all about books, and we are also all about squirrels. (We're all about a lot of things.) It's not surprising that we love this contest from Powell's Books, asking for a name for their squirrel character!

Speaking of books, there is talk that the Newbery award winners can be "too challenging" for kids these days. Oh, whatever, people.

The media is dying. Have you heard? Now there's a Twitter feed that tracks the layoffs and the upheavals in real time.

The history of Illinois corruption makes for some fascinating reading, regardless of your political leanings. (Full disclosure: I am related to the Madigans, in a distant sort of way. I've only met them at weddings and funerals and whatnot.)

From Cassandra: The top ten archaeological finds of 2008.

And finally, here's some more library design porn for those of us who love looking at library architecture. These have a more modernist bent.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Okay, I lied. Thanks to Holly, we have an awesome link to share for Spooky Wednesday: Ghost Signs of Chicago!
Hey there. Today is a vacation day for Folderol! We'll be back tomorrow, honest.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A gift for those people who have everything: Rocketship Tours will take them to the edge of space and back again. Alternatively, they could stay on land and enjoy their furniture made from actual aircraft.

Meanwhile, for the rest of us entrenched in reality, there are free films to watch online! Check out Der Luftkrieg der Zukunft (The Airship Destroyer), a silent German film from 1909 with dirigibles and more! (The entire Europa site is amazing and worth several hours of study.)

Steampunk and taxidermy have a weird symbiotic relationship that I don't truly understand. Something about gears and bones and transhumanism, I suppose. At any rate, this computer mouse by Daniel Pon combines both worlds in one click!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Happy birthday, Zazoo!

Today has been busy, but here are two great sites to visit: the art of Daniel Martin Diaz and the weblog of a film scout in New York City. Have at them! Back soon.

Friday, December 12, 2008

RIP, Bettie Page. You were an icon.

From Bunny: the perfect geek gift -- a Dalek voice changer helmet. (Also good for steampunks -- think of the mods you could make to this!) Check out the video of the helmet in action, too.

From Cassandra: red wine and cigarettes may help fight Alzheimer's. This is the kind of medical research we need!

Also from Cassandra: how office roles can mirror family roles; another look at the mysteriously disappearing honeybees; the increasing weirdness of looking younger while getting older; and the "New Objectivist Institute for Second Life," which is...odd.

Have a spiffy weekend, everyone! See you Monday!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A few brief informational bits today, while I scramble to get stuff ready for the holidays...

Google is watching you! Well, when you look at their updates to "street view" in Google Maps, it's probably true.

I think I've linked to Neglected Books before, but I don't think I knew they have a weblog!

I also had no idea that Dr. Peter Roget, of thesaurus fame, had such a strange life. Talk about a need for structure. Yikes.

InMyBook provides a greeting card and bookmark, all in one!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's the Day Without a Gay. How's it going out there?

Cassandra has sent in so many good links I could probably feature her contributions for the rest of the week. Today's assortment:

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

If you're shopping for a steampunk this season, you might consider assembling a clockwork bird (or providing them with the blueprints so they can make it themselves!). Also, if you remember earlier posts about sci-fi travel posters, you might be interested in the new calendar which looks nothing short of awesome.

If you're thinking far beyond the holidays, however, there's now a handy steampunk's guide to the apocalypse. (It's a .pdf file, be warned. Hopefully the apocalypse will be Acrobat-friendly.)

Signs that steampunk may have gone an eensy bit too far: these Star Trek steampunkified wallpaper images and the recent birth of a Twitter steampunk group.

Signs that steampunk hasn't gone far enough yet: look, a steampunk brewery in Durham, North Carolina! Doesn't it make you crave one in your own town?

And finally, speaking of my own town, the Cincinnati steampunk corps are making an excursion to the Air Force museum at Wright-Patterson this weekend. All are welcome! You can even try to break away and look for aliens while there, but we will disavow all knowledge of you if you're caught.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Opera in manga form? Sure, why not? Opera Live features just that -- click on "read" and then choose "manga" to read short summaries of operas like La Boheme with anime characters.

Just in time for the holidays, there's a $500 fashion book starring Barbie. Er. You could also look at a short slideshow for free!

Yorick was going to be portrayed by a real human skull (donated by a man who wanted to be on stage after his death) in the Royal Shakespeare Company's latest production of Hamlet, but now they're not going to use it in the performance. Sad, really.

An in-depth analysis of Cinderella determines that it's all about what women want and how women hold each other back, and mother issues, and a lot more. (Cassandra, feel free to vent in the comments!)

The Poster Public Project has some great ideas. I like the first and last photos the best.

And finally, please consider making a donation to help out a scifi writer in trouble. Details -- and an awesome short story -- are at John Scalzi's Whatever.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Happy Friday, everyone! And Happy Repeal Day! Local Cincinnati types can celebrate tonight at Grammer's and Mecklenburg Gardens, among other places.

It's getting to that time of year for reviews and recaps. The best 100 films of 2008 are listed in the UK's Times Online. You may disagree with their decisions. (Thanks, Cassandra!)

Here's a brilliant end-of-year idea: finger puppets of celebritieswho died in 2008! I wish I'd thought of that when we were doing the DeadLog way back when.

For next year's resolutions, Bunny suggests Stickk. His summation: "You wager an amount of cash and if you fail your goal the cash gets taken from you and given to a charity/organization you hate. Interesting incentive!"

From Cassandra: sometimes when you go deer hunting, the deer fights back. Keep that in mind.

And finally, via Gawker: I had no idea John Maynard Keynes had such an alternative lifestyle. I am rethinking my worldview of economists.

Have a spiffy weekend, everyone! See you Monday.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Looking for a holiday gift for the bibliophile in your life? Look no more, for here is a handy list! I had no idea there was so much out there.

Another idea is to buy your favorite librarian some drinks and then watch the newest Librarian special onTNT this weekend. (Well, I think that would be fun, at any rate. Your mileage may vary, depending on the librarian.)

Did anyone else read the Nate the Great books growing up? Did anyone else think they'd seen Emily the Strange before, but couldn't remember just where? Well. Wow.

From Cassandra, some bizarre interview questions from Oxford and Cambridge, including "would you rather be a novel or a poem?" I'd rather be a poem, myself.

Google has their own advent calendar of sorts, counting down to 2009 with useful resources and widgets.

And lastly, found via Stephen's Lighthouse, the Typealyzer purports to categorize your writing according to the Myers-Briggs personality test. I put Folderol in and it told me the following:

ESTP - The Doers

The active and playful type. They are especially attuned to people and things around them and often full of energy, talking, joking and engaging in physical out-door activities. The Doers are happiest with action-filled work which craves their full attention and focus. They might be very impulsive and more keen on starting something new than following it through. They might have a problem with sitting still or remaining inactive for any period of time.

The most hilarious part of this analysis is that in real life, Myers-Briggs pegs me as an INFJ. Keep this in mind if you meet me in person, I guess!

Tomorrow: links from others! Thanks, all.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

We humans are in trouble, for cats have started to use Twitter. Thanks to Ghlaghghee, I now really want to name a cat or dog "Arglebargle."

Cassandra sent in a really good article about the Mormon vs. gay battle, written from the perspective of a former Mormon.

From space: the Hubble Advent Calendar! A new image appears each day.

The always-great Oddee lists ten unique churches, all spectacular in different ways.

If all the place names in the world were literally translated...we'd live in a really weirdly named world. The Atlas of True Names displays such a world!

Bunny can vouch for the fact that pareidolia is a normal way of seeing the world for me (what that says about me is still up for debate). The Art of Darkness shows a seriously eerie photo taken during a fire. What do YOU see?

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Catching up with some steampunk links sent in by others: J. Marsocci points to the awesome SteamGearLab (now with a new t-shirt design for the SteamPug! I think everyone should have a SteamPug), and Dan sends in this great article about steampunk and The Golden Compass. Thanks so much, everyone!

For the graphics geniuses amongst us: go forth and compete in the CG Society's steampunk contest, and win prizes for your efforts!

For the epicurians: Fuel for the Boiler: A Steampunk Cookbook. Need anything more be said?

For the tinkerers: a lovely assortment of rayguns.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Today is World AIDS Day. It's been seven years since I wrote this, and I'm not sure that anything has changed.

In less serious, more absurd matters, people are dancing their Ph.D. If their Ph.D. is in architecture, that means you really can dance about architecture, yes? (Found via Metafilter.)

Lunch bag art can be beautiful.

Monsters can also be beautiful -- and adoptable! The main page for Monster Workshop is worth a look, too, as is the weblog.