Friday, February 22, 2013

Best of the Week #94

Well now for a change in Mollie’s-life-soundtrack pace, how about a little Atmosphere to get us through our Friday? (Believe it or not, I know all the words to a lot of their songs.) This, this, this, this, and this.

In the marathon training department, I’m on track for 50 miles this week (plus one pool day, pilates, and one climbing day)! Unless I don’t run tomorrow, in which case it’ll be 46.

My most popular post this week was Running with Podcasts, which I rarely do anymore because you know what's better than running with podcasts? Running with friends!

Mmmk, now for some Best of the Week links:

Random but excellent: A 1961 New York Times photo, showing Louis Armstrong playing trumpet for his wife, Lucille, in front of the Great Sphinx and pyramids in Giza, Egypt.

Has anyone been following the Haiti cholera problem? Basically, after the earthquake in 2010, UN peacekeepers brought cholera to Haiti and it was (and I thinks still is?) a MAJOR problem. Now, well, this sucks. “U.N. invokes diplomatic immunity on Haiti cholera epidemic.”
  • For nearly two and a half years, the United Nations has sought to skirt responsibility for a ravenous Haitian cholera epidemic that killed at least 8,000 Haitians -- and sickened several hundred thousand more -- since the first outbreak was detected in October 2010, downriver from a sewage outlet used by a contingent of Nepalese blue helmets.
  • Today, Ban Ki-moon phoned Haitian president Michel Martelly to inform him that the United Nations has no intention, or legal obligation, to pay compensation to the families of Haiti's cholera victims.
Also a GREAT read: “In the Time of Cholera: How the U.N. created an epidemic -- then covered it up.”

On the lighter side: "15 Hedgehogs With Things That Look Like Hedgehogs."

Awesome: "World's Largest Rope Swing."

Technology is so cool and people are amazing. “As 3-D Printing Becomes More Accessible, Copyright Questions Arise.” Can you 'Sue The Genie Back Into The Bottle'? I think no.
  • "The technology is coming whether we like it or not," Weinberg says. "And so, as a CEO of one of these companies, you can spend a lot of time and money trying to sue it out of existence — and sue the genie back into the bottle — or you can spend that same time and money and apply it toward finding a way to use the technology to your advantage."
More from NPR on 3D printing: “Print  Me An Ear: 3-D Printing Tackles Human Cartilage.”
  • This insta-ear would have to be tested in larger animals before it's used in humans, Bonassar says. "We're still identifying what the perfect cell source is for these implants," he says. Candidates include human ear cartilage or stem cells from a person's bone marrow or fat.
  • Growing ears and other body parts this way has been the focus of speculation and experimentation for years, and not just by Bonassar's lab. Use in humans has always been "years away." Is that still true?
And even more! “A Factory on Your Kitchen Counter.”
  • But there is a growing sense that 3-D printers may be the home appliance of the future, much as personal computers were 30 years ago, when Dick Cavett referred to the Apple II in a TV commercial as “the appliance of the ’80s for all those pesky household chores.”
  • Like computers, 3-D printers originally proved their worth in the business sector, cost a fortune and were bulkier than a Kelvinator. But in the last few years, less expensive desktop models have emerged, and futurists and 3-D printing hobbyists are now envisioning a world in which someone has an idea for a work-saving tool — or breaks the hour hand on their kitchen clock or loses the cap to the shampoo bottle — and simply prints the invention or the replacement part.
Word. Though I’m not 100% sure this is a good thing for me. Can I has sleep and running please??? (source)

Sometimes I feel like this...sorry I'm not sorry. ALL ABOARD!

Let’s go to Rio, ok? Ok. "Carnival 2013 in Brazil."

Al Roker loves Joe Biden and gets SO excited when he shakes his hand. I looove it!

Aaaah WTF Friday: "Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue Goes to 7 Continents, Finds Exotic People to Use as Props."

  • For the 2013 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, the magazine photographed models on all 7 continents. A world tour of ill-fitting "swim" wear! But sometimes a half-naked lady standing in front of a gorgeous natural backdrop just isn't enough. So the photographers used natives as props.
  • Using people of color as background or extras is a popular fashion trope, whether it's Nylonmagazine, the Free People catalog, British Vogue or J. Crew. But although it's prevalent, it's very distasteful.

I love everything about this story. "Young Ugandan chess-prodigy: lessons in the slum take her to the world stage." Basically, a girl from a slum becomes an international chess badass and “the ultimate underdog.”
  • She heard about a Western-based religious charity that mentored slum kids and served food near her alleyway, and also taught the kids some odd game called chess.
  • “I was hungry,” Mutesi says, “I’d never heard of chess, and I’d never seen it. So… I was like, ‘Maybe I can also go there to learn about chess and get a cup of porridge.’”
  • Eventually, someone at the organization, a US-based group called Sports Outreach ministry, assigned a five- year old child to teach Mutesi the rules of chess, setting her on a path that would eventually transform her life and outlook, and lead her to compete in international matches.
  • The first indications that she might be a prodigy came when she started to beat the boys in chess. In Uganda, chess is considered too difficult for girls. But Mutesi changed that belief.
  • At the age of 14 she qualified to represent Uganda in the World Chess Olympiad. Even without formal training, she proved apt enough to travel to Russia for the match. She is considered the best female player in Uganda and last year became the first Ugandan female to enter a male tournament and win.
This is insanely cool and beautifully shot: “The Camel Race.”

  • Young camel owner Hamad quits his job for the love of his life: his camel Khudriah who just begins her first racing season. In 2005, a human rights outcry banned the use of child jockeys, and so Qatar's camel races now feature robot jockeys in a reinvented twist of tradition. "The Camel Race" is an insider verité-style look into the tucked-away camel culture of Qatar, revealing a world of modern bedouins, camel racing, and the deep roots of Qatar's heritage.
Color photography from 100 years ago– CRAZY! "Russia in color, a century ago."

  • The high quality of the images, combined with the bright colors, make it difficult for viewers to believe that they are looking 100 years back in time - when these photographs were taken, neither the Russian Revolution nor World War I had yet begun. Collected here are a few of the hundreds of color images made available by the Library of Congress, which purchased the original glass plates back in 1948.
This is absolutely 100% amazing. "Street artist playing Hallelujah with crystal glasses."

Oh and guess what? Today is my birthday eve (let's pretend that's a think, k?). Which means, dun dun dunnnn...BIRTHDAY WEEKEND! :)