December 2007 Archives

6 Billion Others

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Another brilliant site from one of my favourite photographers - Yann Arthus Bertrand. Listen to some fascinating testimonials by ordinary people from all over the globe and all walks of life. Includes a centenarian with 4 wives from Kenya, a female refugee from Darfur and all sorts of people whose personal stories range from the unbearably tragic to the unspeakably beautiful.



Sketch Swap

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Sketch a picture and then click the button to exchange with someone else's sketch.- I thought mine was bad enough but the one I got back was even worse..hehe

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I have to say that I did NOT draw this myself.

Name that Tune

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http://www.namemytune.com/

This site is a fabulous idea - ever found yourself humming a tune that you've heard but no idea what song it is?

Hum your tune into your mike and other people will try and identify it - either that or do the guessing on other people's tunes...

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Google's Hidden Features

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Did you know that Google is a lot cleverer than you might normally think. There are 15 different hidden functions listed on this site. Learn how to use them and empower yourself.

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Eat the Healthiest Foods

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Browse the top 130 healthiest foods in the world and find out what they are, where they come from, why they're good for you, their history, how to store and prepare them and lots more stuff like that...this site goes into a lot of detail and it's interesting stuff.

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The trusty old Dtaeng Moh (or watermelon).


The Origins of English Words

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Etymological origins of words in the English language - "Etymologies are not definitions; they're explanations of what our words meant and how they sounded 600 or 2,000 years ago."

This one is for all English speakers everywhere - and big shout out to all the English teachers in Bangkok..
 

Ancient Chinese Tricks

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"The best thing about mind/body training is how it makes you feel inside. But maybe the second best thing is, it lets you do impressive stuff you couldn't do otherwise. Like make it impossible for someone much bigger than yourself to bend your arm. Or make your body feel so heavy that two people can't lift you off the ground - even though they could a moment before. These Cool-Ki tricks are certainly cool, but they also teach you a lot about your mind/body state."


   


Asian Beer

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THis is a recently popular blog about Asian beers - the good and the bad...if you're living in Asia or have developed a taste for the Oriental ales from your local restaurant / Asian supermarket this site is a must-see.

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Ask the Philosophers

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http://www.askphilosophers.org/

This is a discussion site whereby members of the general public - that means you if you want - can pose moral and maybe spiritual questions to real philosophers and see what they have to say on the issues.

Site has been going quite a while now so there are plenty of archives on various topics to browse through.

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Plato.

Drugged Spider's Webs

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An interesting experiment - a collection of pictures of webs made by spiders high on various illicit substances. Apparently the spiders have been fed with drug-dosed flies to get them in that state.

Browse to the main site and you'll also be able to find references to many many articles on cannabis as well as a collection of art to do with weed as well.

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Web of a spider on LSD...



Sidewalk Art

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There appears to be a bit of a boom for pavement art at the moment. These examples are just awesome.

And if you're interested in those, take a look at these...

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Top 20 Videos on the Net

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No need anymore to troll all the big video sites one-by-one. http://www.viralvideochart.com puts all the hottest vids from YouTube and Google Video and all the rest of them into a chart and they are then all accessible from the one web page.

What would Jesus do?

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http://www.b3ta.com/challenge/what_would_jesus_do

Site opened a challenge asking what Jesus would do in certain situations - people post amusing images in a bid to win the challenge. There's some pretty heavy satire here so if you're a devout Christian who's easily offended then maybe you shouldn't look at this one...

Site actually has a lot more ongoing challenges than just the Jesus one (which is now closed).

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Learn about Meditation

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http://www.wildmind.org/

Site delves in to background and practice of meditation with articles on breathing and posture as well as its ties with yoga, pain management and meditation in prisons(!) plus a lot more...

Site also helpfully links to related places on the Net...

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Funny Toilet Instructions

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On a more light-hearted note - check out these amusing toilet signs from around the world.

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As seen in Malaysia.

Dynamic Earth

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Masquerading under the same name as the perpetual exhibition in Edinburgh Dynamic Earth is an online exhibition about the birth of our solar system and the development of our planet Earth. The site is divided into 4 sections, "Gems and Minerals", "Rocks and Mining, "Plate Tectonics and Volcanoes" and "The Solar System". Browse through the interactive site to watch a video about the birth of the Sun, view images taken by the Hubble Telescope, see maps of our ancient continents and learn about the hidden stories held within rocks, gems and minerals and other geologocal phenomena.

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Lords of the Logistic

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This is  a collection of unusual photos taken mostly in Asia by the looks of them. Some of you may scream "Photoshop!" but having lived over there for 10 years I can confidently say that unfortunately most of these are straight up...

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Fly Fishing

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Read all about the history of this addictive practise -  this site was of great interest to myself - but that's probably because I used to be into this kind of thing. Did you know that fly fishing was widely practiced in Europe as far back as the 13th Century? And some cultures have been doing it since 200 A.D.? Guess they didn't have carbon fibre rods and all that back then though...

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Adams dry fly.
 

Long Bets

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http://www.longbets.org/

Bet on long-term predictions about anything at all - bet against someone else's predictions or do some predicting yourself - it's real money that you're putting down, and if you're any good, winning...

"The purpose of the The Long Now Foundation is to improve long-term thinking..."

Soviet Gulags

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Fascinating stuff if you're into this kind of thing...read all about them, their background, who was in them and what they were like...

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Picture of Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Spirograph

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Find out what a spirograph is and then make your own design with this neat Java applet...





...and then in a similar (but not same) vein check out these man-made spirals at this place...



Odd Watches

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Odd watches is a site that documents some of the stranger designs of timekeepers - pictures and blurb included about each one and there are indeed some very strange designs in there...

chromatron.jpgThe Chromatron


Learn how to speak Arabic

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http://www.gulfarabic.com/

This site teaches you how to speak Arabic as it is spoken in the Gulf states - you need to register to get the whole course but it's free. Mouseover for pronunciation sound effects and step-by-step learning with useful phrases for different situations...I'm not sure how different the language is from what is spoken in some of the North African countries  - but suspect they would know what you're saying over there whatever you're speaking...:-))

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This is a bit off topic but here's myself and Bill (my eldest) in the Pentlands a couple of months ago.

The Dreaded Lurgy

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http://www.insidecancer.org/

Award-winning site demonstrating pretty much everything about cancer, its causes, diagnosis and treatment and a lot of other stuff about this terrible disease. Everything is explained with a good balance of layman's terms and scientific terms also and it's all displayed with a nice use of Flash.

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A T-cell (orange) killing a cancer cell.

FBI and the Freedom of Information Act

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Find out what the US government knew and when they knew it with these previous secret files being released due to the Freedom of Information Act...by the way I'm not sure how comprehensive this listing is seeing as it's the FBI's own website but there's some pretty interesting reading up here.

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Flight Tracker

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I had a hard time a few months ago trying to find a site that tracked flights in and out of Edinburgh. Now I've found this one which looks like it's pretty comprehensive with its airports and flights...might come in handy one day...

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Kang Yatse - a Skiing Misadventure

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Following on in the travel thread - this is a story of a couple of Americans' trip to the Indian Himalayas from start to finish. The site itself is done in Flash - watch the story through mini-videos.

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Notes from the Road

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A brilliant travelogue...very well written actually on a selected few places from around the World

"By road, by kayak, seaplane and most of all on foot, I try to tackle the themes of city and country in the modern World."

Also some excellent photography to be found here but unfortunately none small enough to include in this post...
 

Damn Interesting

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DamnInteresting.com has grown to be one of my personal favourites - I have spent hours on this site whilst working through the lonely night shifts at work. It's well worth more than just a quick look - and the articles are just as the title says - damn interesting!

Read about (amongst many other things) - programmable drinks bottles, gravity-powered planes and lots of other things here...



How Sleep Works

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Nice article from the HSW crew - did you know cows can sleep while they are standing up but they only dream when they are lying down?

ahem, ahem, fascinating...ahem

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