The Last of the Pinball Doctors in NYC

@ 6am ()

In the age of home videogame consoles and dead arcades, Motherboard interviews Pinball Technician, Mike Hooker.

Interestingly enough, WSJ did a piece on Mike seven years ago. Back then there were around 750 people in the US who could repair pinball machines. Although I wonder if there are more now given the popularity of “barcades” in cities.

If you’re into classic arcades and pinball machines, check out the Strong Museum of Play in Rochester NY. They have an amazing collection of arcade games, and an awesome exhibit on Pinball Machines.

 

Would Discovering Alien Life Ruin Us?

Feb 3, 2018 @ 4pm ()

Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell discusses the Great Filter hypothesis and helps us ponder is effects of discovering alien life.

Either we’re super lucky to be here and we took a huge step in our development so we’re the first, or we haven’t and that next step is ahead of us; which basically spells out certain doom because any alien civilization that came before us wiped itself out once it got to that step. Bill Bryson discusses the former in his book A Short History of Nearly Everything. As much as I want to “believe”, I’m going to bet on the fact that we’re just really really lucky to be alive. Of course some would argue if we’re lucky at all. Any who! Watch!

Maya “Megalopolis” Revealed by Laser Scans

Feb 1, 2018 @ 9pm ()

Researchers using laser scanning discover a network Maya roads and houses hidden under the jungle canopy of Northern Guatemala.

Using a new technology called LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging), scholars digitally removed the jungle canopy and were able identify 60,000 previously unknown Maya houses, palaces, roads, and structures.

VIA NATGEO

Engineering of the Drinking Bird

Jan 31, 2018 @ 2pm ()

Bill Hammack, the Engineer Guy, has a new video up on YouTube telling the fascinating history and science behind this novelty toy.

I always wanted one of these as a kid, though after watching this, I don’t think I missed much. I do love Bill’s videos though.

VIA ENGINEERGUY

Robots in the Woods

Jan 29, 2018 @ 3pm ()

A Reddit user’s mother caught a group of Boston Dynamics employees walking their robot, Atlas, out in the woods in Lincoln, MA.

I love how no one acknowledges her – not even the robot. They’re doing a great job teaching that robot how to be a New Englander.

VIA LAUGHING SQUID | REDDIT

Strava’s fitness tracker heatmap reveals more than exercise routes

Jan 28, 2018 @ 9pm ()

A seemingly obvious side effect to a fitness app that uses GPS data to track users progress, Strava’s global heatmap show’s more than just exercise routes.

In November 2017, Strava released their global heatmap which illustrates the popularity of running and biking routes throughout the world. Unfortunately for national security, their maps also may show regular patrol routes at military bases overseas.

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Forbidden Snacks

@ 5pm ()

Apparently teens are eating Tide Pods? Enough so that The SciShow created a video about it.

In the first 3 weeks of 2018 at least 86 American teens have gotten sick enough to alert poison control.

I wasn’t going to post about the Tide Pod issue itself. I just wanted to get to the following Reddit bit – but found the Sci-Show post, which happens to be a really interesting lesson on a really stupid behavior. You’d think that “don’t eat laundry detergent” would be enough, but if side effects like “vomiting blood and seizures” doesn’t change your mind… *shrug*

Anyways, onto the original post – Reddit has a /r/forbiddensnacks subthread that is laughable. Check it out.

VIA BOING BOING