What a Hurricane Looks Like From Outer Space

≡ Category: Uncategorized |1 Comment

In anticipation of Gustav…. Here’s what Hurricane Dean looked like for the crew flying in a NASA space shuttle last August. You can check out more NASA videos on YouTube here. It’s also added to our YouTube playlist. Thanks to Bill for pointing this out. (Readers: If you see good pieces of cultural media, feel free to send them our way.


On the Lighter Side: Re-Thinking Classic Films

≡ Category: Film |Leave a Comment

Ending the week on a lighter note …
A backer of indie film festivals, Volkswagen presents “See Film Differently” – a series of videos that feature amusing re-interpretations of classic movies. Here, you’ll find new takes on Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Die Hard, and Mary Poppins.


Knock $100 Off Amazon’s Kindle

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Nice find by Kottke.org. If you’re willing to sign up for an Amazon credit card (with no annual fee), you can get a $100 rebate on the Kindle, Amazon’s fast-selling e-book reader. This brings the price down to $259. And, as Kottke warns, you should always read the fine print. You can get more info here, and buy the Kindle here.


Teach Your Children Mandarin … They’re Going to Need It

≡ Category: Language Lessons |2 Comments

Thomas Friedman’s latest opinion piece in the New York Times starts like this:
After attending the spectacular closing ceremony at the Beijing Olympics and feeling the vibrations from hundreds of Chinese drummers pulsating in my own chest, I was tempted to conclude two things: “Holy mackerel, the energy coming out of this country is unrivaled.


Learning Spanish with Free Audio Lessons: The Lay of the Land

≡ Category: Language Lessons |10 Comments

Today we have the pleasure of welcoming a guest contribution by Eleena de Lisser, who runs Voices en Español, a bilingual blog and conversational Spanish podcast (iTunes – RSS Feed).


An Animated History of Evil

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This animated mockumentary traces the history of evil from Ancient Greece until today. While I wouldn’t make the video part of a standard high school curriculum, I give it points for creativity. We’ve added it to our YouTube Playlist.


The Story of Stuff in 20 Animated Minutes

≡ Category: Current Affairs, Film, Video - Politics/Society |1 Comment

Here’s another good submission (many thanks) that came out of last week’s book giveaway…
It’s an animated film called The Story of Stuff, which offers “a 20-minute, fast-paced, fact-filled look at the underside of our production and consumption patterns.


Photography in Motion: 360-Degree View of Beijing’s Olympic Stadium

≡ Category: Art |1 Comment

Finnish photographer Kari Kuukka has posted a panoramic view of Beijing’s Olympics Stadium, capturing the mood about 30 minutes before the men’s 100m final, when Usain Bolt blew away the field. Give the page a few seconds to load and the picture will go in motion. Hat tip to Metafilter, and adieu to Beijing.


Download a Free Copy of Cory Doctorow’s Bestseller, Little Brother

≡ Category: Books |2 Comments

Here’s a good item that came out of yesterday’s book giveaway — Benjamin L called our attention to the fact that you can download a free copy of Little Brother, the new novel by Cory Doctorow, who writes for the popular BoingBoing blog and has consistently backed the whole idea of “open culture.


The World Without Us: Get A Free Copy of the NY Times Bestseller

≡ Category: Books, Current Affairs, Science |25 Comments


What if we disappeared from the face of the earth tomorrow? All of us, just like that? What would happen? How would the remaining world survive or thrive without us? That’s the scenario that gets examined by science writer Alan Weisman (who we interviewed last year) in his non-fiction eco-thriller, The World Without Us.


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