April 2010 - Posts

1) Flying Fish

If you've ever been out past 10 miles on a boat in the Gulf of Mexico, then you've seen hundreds if not thousands of these. They jump out of the water and can glide for 


2) The Chinese Gliding Frog


This frog looks normal enough, but this little guy is a glider too! The Chinese Gliding Frog is a type of tree frog that can glide at an angle less than 45 degrees from tree to tree. They do this by extending all of their appendages and opening up their toes and using their webbing as sort of a parachute. Pretty neat!


3) The Paradise Tree Snake


The Paradise Tree Snake is not only one of the most colorful snakes in its region, Malaysia, but it has another trick up its sleeve. This snake can take flight by flattening it's body out and taking a leap of faith!


Here's a video of the snake in action.

4) The Flying Dragon


Draco Volans, or the Flying Dragon, is a normal looking little lizard until he feels the need for a quick escape or just an adrenaline rush. These little guys have flaps of skin connected to 5 extendable ribs that they use as sails to glide through the canopy.

Watch the Draco Lizard in action. (if you notice, the snake is actually the Paradise Tree Snake as mentioned in #1!)

5) Gliding Ants


These ants are of the tropical tree ant variety and are unlike any other ants. They make their home high up in the canopy of the forest, so falling from there could mean getting extremely lost or  probably dying. These little guys have developed a knack for controlling their fall, and can use their legs as rutters to guide their fall back to the trunk of the tree from which they came.

Gliding ants in action.

6) The Mobula

The Mobula is a genus of ray that can propel itself up to 2 meters out of the water and glide back down to the surface. The Mobula resembles the Manta Ray that is in the same family. My worst nightmare: being out on a boat enjoying my day and getting stung in the face by a flying ray.


7) TheColugo


The Colugo of South East Asia is the best glider out of all of the gliding mammals. The Colugo can glide up to 70 meters from tree to tree! That's 230 feet! WOW! They're known as flying lemurs, but they are not lemurs at all. They are actually pretty clumsy climbers since they lack opposable thumbs and are pretty feeble.

This Colugo is actually gliding through the air with its young clutching to its belly!

Watch the Colugo in action.

Posted Saturday, April 24, 2010 11:51 AM by cstanton | 2 comment(s)
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New Banksy street art has been showing up in San Fransisco's Chinatown and Mission district.

Troy Holden took this great shot:



Banksy has been in the San Fransisco area since January when he was promoting the premier of his  street art documentary "Exit Through The Gift Shop."

Just recently have his works been showing up around the city.



Warholian has been documenting the new art with photos and video.

Also, if you'd like to see Banksy in the Bristol Museum check this out.
Posted Friday, April 23, 2010 3:21 PM by cstanton | 2 comment(s)
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Snoop Dogg has teamed up with "Day 'N' Night" rapper Kid Cudi to bring you an eco-friendly video for the new song "That Tree" a week before earth day. Actually, scratch that, this video is more about burning trees than it is planting them. Check out the clip below.

This upbeat and cheerful buddah lover homage to the kind herb features the rappers in some lumberjack garb, harvesting paper cut-out trees. Younger viewers may not get the joke, but their outfits are those of Cheech and Chong from the stoner classic film "Up In Smoke." They are joined by a couple of chicks that seem to be doing most of the work and a deer that looks a little lifted.

Tell me what you think of the video, chronic or beasters?


Posted Thursday, April 15, 2010 2:40 PM by cstanton | with no comments
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Since its release in 1999, the Electribe series of synthesizers by KORG has been a favorite by creative artists across the world and across several electronic genres. The beatmaking power of the Electribe series is now portable thanks to iElectribe, KORG's first dedicated application for the iPad.

iElectribe gives a real hardware feel by using precise touchscreen commands to tweak each knob, fader, and dial and fully incorporates the iPad's full 9.7 inch screen.

iElectribe brings a few things to the table.

  • The first is the sound engine and sequencer from the Electribe•R
  • 64 new preset patterns that are ready to use
  • 8 awesome effects including a tempo-matching BPM delay for easy mixing.
  • Advanced Motion Sequencing

Much less important, but not any less cool, is that the user can completely customize the look of the tool using photos on their iPad.


The most special thing about the iElectribe is undoubtedly the Advanced Motion Sequencing that allows you to save all of the tweaks and turns of the knobs for all of the parameters directly to the pattern! So while your pattern is playing you can be messing with the knobs, save it, and play it back and if you choose you can tweak the controls on a second time to create advanced and crazy patterns like never before!



With this new feature exclusive to the iElectribe and its $9.99 promotional pricetag (until June 30th,2010... $19.99 afterwards), if you have an iPad, it certainly beats the heck out of paying upwards of $300 for the hardware that does less and is MUCH less portable. =

iElectribe is available at the Apple Store now.
Posted Thursday, April 15, 2010 11:42 AM by cstanton | 1 comment(s)
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"Will It Blend?" is a question often asked and answered by Tom Dickson, Blendtec's own blending expert. Armed with an unlimited supply of blender blades and top-end blenders, Tom throws all kinds of things in there, ranging from Airsoft guns to laser pointers, to answer the question "Will It Blend?"

This time, Tom wants to find out whether or not the iPad can face the blades of the Total Blender, which costs a hefty $400, and make it out alive. Will it blend?

Posted Monday, April 5, 2010 1:46 PM by cstanton | 1 comment(s)
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The Adult Swim animated series The Boondocks, based on the comic strip by Aaron McGruder, is back again for a sure-to-be hilarious third season.



The first season premiered in '05, followed by a second in '07, and after a 3 year break will return on May 2nd, 2010.

The Boondocks makes fun of nearly every aspect of American culture and race relations through both subtle ironies and blatant plays on stereotypes. If you haven't seen it yet and you have a sense of humor, you're missing out.

The voices are awesome too, Granddad is played by John Witherspoon from Friday, and Cedric Yarbrough from Reno 911 plays Tom and Colonel Stinkmeaner.

The third season trailer has just been released, so check it out before Sony gets it taken down.


Really disappointing that it's the final season, I'm totally bummed out... but it looks like it's gonna be a good season with some touchy issues.. and Bushido Brown is back!
Posted Monday, April 5, 2010 12:43 PM by cstanton | with no comments
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Lil Wayne has ducked and dodged the legal system for quite some time, but now his time is up and he has begun serving a year long sentence at Rikers Island in New York. The rapper loves the public eye and if you thought for one second you wouldn't hear from him for these 8 months (rich people get good behavior), THINK AGAIN. Just today he's launched a website to keep in touch with his friends and fans until he's out in November.



"During my prison stint, I want my fans to know I love you. I want all of you to know that I appreciate all the mail I get, and this is my way of saying thank you. The F is for Family, Friends, and Fans," writes Lil Wayne to start off his first entry.

The rapper can't access the internet in prison. Even if making it rain on the judges has worked in the past, I guess he can't get the guards to smuggle in a laptop for him. His letters to his team will be transcribed weekly and posted on the website for his fans to read.

The first post is all about how he is in good spirits, loves his kids, and has a strong emphasis on how much he loves his fans. His post contains shout outs to three of his fans that have written him during his stay and urges more of his fans, and even "those who hate," to keep writing him.

"For real, this will be the best way we can communicate for the coming months. The same way yall miss me, I miss yall, only 100 times more. To those who hate. Hate is only a form love that hasn’t found a way to express itself logically. Keep sending the letters and I promise keep responding. Thank YOU, thank YOU, thank YOU. No matter what they do to erase me, my love for you will always be permanent. Remember that. Take care. God bless."

I wonder what else he'll have to say. :)



Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 3:12 PM by cstanton | with no comments
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There are always those movies that you really want to see, or just files that you want to have, but they're either so rare or so new that it seems like nobody has them. In those cases you generally have to tediously scour all of the torrent sites that you have accumulated throughout your career of being a filthy pirate, or just give up.

A great time saver for the pirate, Torrent Scan is a great new Firefox Add-on that allows you to search for torrents without having to visit your entire pirate repertoire of torrent sites. Torrent Scan is a tool bar that automatically searches all of the best torrent websites for you, and it produces great results.

The add-on scans through sites like BTjunkie, isoHunt, SUMOtorrent, and a bunch of others. GET IT HERE!

It has a ridiculous amount of torrent engines, but they're not all active at first. You can click the little wrench icon at the top, go to customize engines, and then drag and drop engines available to you from another "available engines" list to your active engines if you want to scan those too! And, if you want to make it really pretty you can select a theme.

Torrent Scan is the most customizable torrent add-on there is, I would suggest you check it out if you're into file sharing.
Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 2:22 PM by cstanton | with no comments
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Ever have the craving for cartoons? Well The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack on Cartoon Network is a great place to start because Modest Mouse allstar frontman Isaac Brock is contributing the music to an upcoming episode!

Apparently Isaac is a big fan of The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack, a REALLY trippy and pretty funny show about a boy named Flapjack that's on a never-ending quest for candy to satisfy his gargantuan sweet tooth.

Details on when the episode is going to air are still unknown, but my guess is that you might be able to find out on the creator's blog.
Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 11:39 AM by cstanton | with no comments
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A holiday that not many have heard about lies right between Good Friday and Easter.. A much more fun holiday. It's International Pillow Fight Day! On Saturday, April 3rd, there will be massive pillow fights around the world. You can use this site to help you find the one closest to you. Though it's a little late, you can even organize your own and post it to the site.

Unfortunately I won't be able to make it to any of these cities so I'm going to have to knock some more-than-likely uninformed people around with my pillows locally.

Here's a video from the '09 pillow fight in Washington D.C.



I think this is a great random holiday. Everyone needs a good pillow fight from time to time and I don't think we get enough of them.

This is another idea from the urban playground movement. Basically their goal is to make these unique events happen in public space to encourage people to get out and to stop doing non-social consumer activities like watch television. The goal is to get people to pull the wool from their eyes and recognize and take a stand against advertisement and commercialism invading our public space, everywhere we look.

I'm all for it, which is why I'm going to hit some people with pillows tomorrow.
Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 11:04 AM by cstanton | with no comments
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I know I'm a few days late on posting this, but I've decided that it's worth it. I'm a little upset with my most recent purchase of the Stimulus Package for Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

The map pack came with 5 maps, but only 3 are new! Two of them are from Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, which I already payed for 3 years ago. I mean it's great to be able to play the maps again with the new additions, but at the same time I would have much preferred them to add more original content considering the $15 price tag. I do believe that's the most I've ever payed for any addition to any game... ever. Well maybe Starcraft: Brood War, but that definitely included a lot more new original content.

On the 31st, when the map pack was first released, the only working server was for the people that had purchased the pack. I was craving my fix in the evening and came to find that I couldn't play, but I checked my friends list and saw people playing matches on boards that I didn't have. I had been planning on purchasing the maps as soon as they came out, but honestly I did not expect them to be a full $15.

On the brighter side, all of the new maps, unlike the maps from the pack that was released for COD 4, are well designed, balanced, and fair. The levels are pretty vast, and can't be completely run from one spot. There are many different paths through the levels and there's always the possibility of someone being at your 6.

The two remade maps are Overgrown and Crash. They were fan favorites from the first Modern Warfare and are actually pretty cool maps. Overgrown is set in some small war-torn rural village with a farm on one side, some buildings on the other, and a dried up creek running between the two sides. Crash is set in a more urban village with a crashed helicopter being the focus of the map.

The new levels are Bailout, Salvage, and Storm.


Bailout

Bailout is set on a city street with a bunch of buildings lining each side, the whole level is sloped with one spawn at the low end and one at the high end, which makes it a little uneven... "ITS OVER INSURGENT, I HAVE THE HIGH GROUND"



Salvage is probably my favorite new level. It's set in the snow and is pretty even on both sides. A lot of tires, cement pipes, and other junkyard stuff provide a copious amount of hiding spots. The flow of the level is really natural and I haven't been trapped or had anybody trapped in a spawn once.



Storm is set in... well.... a storm. It is a lot like Downpour from COD 4. It's just a bunch of randomly skewed buildings, some filled with mannequins which I guess are for target practice, and has a warehouse filled with crates.

All in all I'm happy that they released a map pack to give the game a little more variation, but I am not happy that I had to pay $15 for only three new maps. It's kind of a slap in the face that they call it the "Stimulus Package." At least the maps are much better than the maps that were in the map pack for COD4.
Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 9:58 AM by cstanton | with no comments
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Most people that aren't of strong Christian faith hear about Good Friday and how the day is to commemorate the crucifixion of Christ and wonder... Why is this called "Good Friday?"



The leader of the Christian faith was tormented and hung on a cross til death. Why is this good at all? Seems like Jesus was probably having a pretty Bad Friday.

"Today is a good day because it is in commemoration of Jesus giving himself up for all of our sins, a sacrifice for the reconciliation of humanity. His act of 'goodness' allows us to come together and reconcile with God in unity as believers," says Deacon Gary Brinkworth of Good Shepherd Parish in Tallahassee, Florida.

Though the day is focused on the suffering of Jesus that we basically caused him, Deacon Brinkworth says that "it is a time that we can all take part in the suffering of Christ. We can all be remorseful yet optimistic as one, we know that the crucifixion of Christ leads to hope and a new life, a resurrection."

So basically, the day is to remind those of faith of the sacrifices of Jesus Christ so that they can appreciate the covenant made with God, basically saying that he'll give us a second chance because his Son found us worthy enough to die for. So what he did was "Good" in the sense that we won't all burn in Hell.

Good Friday also has a couple of different names, two more appropriate and one of the same. Holy Friday and Black Friday, which seem much more appropriate, and ....... Great? Friday are all other names for the day.

It seems like Good Friday would mark the turn of the B.C.E. to C.E., but it doesn't. According to a few different groups using a Crucifixion darkness and eclipse model which is consistent with Apostle Peter's "Moon Of Blood," the crucifixion happened on April 3rd, 33 C.E.

So, all in all.. Good  Friday is "good" for people of faith because it brings unity to them in remembrance of the suffering of Christ and gives them happiness from being reminded of the covenant with God that resulted from his sacrifice.

Good Friday takes place on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday... so that's today!
Posted Friday, April 2, 2010 8:45 AM by cstanton | with no comments
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