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‘cool’ Archives

The Best Job in the World

The Best Job in the World

Help wanted: Spend six months working for Tourism Queensland as "caretaker" and resident blogger on an island in Australia's Great Barrier Reef. Compensation is $105,000 and housing in a three-bedroom villa with a pool. "They'll also have to talk to media from time to time about what they're doing so they can't be too shy and they'll have to love [...]

The Princess Bride DVD ambigram

The Princess Bride DVD ambigram

The latest cover of the Princess Bride DVD has an amazing ambigram. A suitably awesome cover for one of the finest movies ever made. (more…)

Learn where someone was born from their Social Security number

Learn where someone was born from their Social Security number

In the United States, a Social Security number (SSN) is a nine-digit number issued to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and temporary (working) residents under section 205(c)(2) of the Social Security Act, codified as 42 U.S.C. § 405(c)(2). The number is issued to an individual by the Social Security Administration, an independent agency of the [...]

New SanDisk SSD G3 is as fast as a 40k rpm HDD

New SanDisk SSD G3 is as fast as a 40k rpm HDD

SanDisk today unveiled its third-generation family of solid-state drives (SSDs). Using multi-level cell (MLC) NAND flash memory technology, SanDisk's G3 Series establishes new benchmarks in performance and price-performance leadership in the SSD industry. Designed as drop-in replacements for hard-disk drives (HDDs) in notebook PCs, the initial [...]

Twitter IRC server: tircd

Twitter IRC server: tircd

tircd is an ircd proxy for talking to the Twitter API. It should work with any standard IRC client. After running the Perl script, you authenticate to the IRC server using your Twitter username as your /nick. Join the room #twitter and the /topic will be set to your last update. Any message you type will update Twitter and the room’s topic. All [...]

Become a virtual Texas Deputy

Become a virtual Texas Deputy

I think what we're missing here is a proper scoring system... 5 gold for a confirmed event 10 gold for an arrest 100 gold for a conviction 10000 gold for bigfoot The Texas Border Sheriff's Coalition has joined BlueServo in a public-private partnership to deploy the Virtual Community Watch, an innovative real-time surveillance program [...]

Steganography made simple

Steganography made simple

As programmers, our code should be readable, not cryptic; but sometimes it’s fun to surprise, obfuscate or conceal. Wikipedia says: Steganography is the art and science of writing hidden messages in such a way that no-one apart from the sender and intended recipient even realizes there is a hidden message. By contrast, cryptography obscures the [...]

Euler’s Identity is said to be the most beautiful theorem in mathematics

Euler’s Identity is said to be the most beautiful theorem in mathematics

Gauss is reported to have commented that if this formula was not immediately apparent to a student on being told it, the student would never be a first-class mathematician. "It is absolutely paradoxical; we cannot understand it, and we don't know what it means, but we have proved it, and therefore we know it must be the truth." - Benjamin [...]

50 Things We Know Now That We Didn’t Know This Time Last Year

50 Things We Know Now That We Didn’t Know This Time Last Year

Well, well, well. Wasn't 2008 a newsy little year? Believe it or not, events happened that had nothing to do with the presidential election, fuel prices, or Michael Phelps. Not that you'd have an easy time sifting through all the media debris to find the information that actually meant something. With so many distractions, you probably [...]

HOWTO: Make a DNS Dead Drop

HOWTO: Make a DNS Dead Drop

Landon Fuller figured out a nice application for Dan Kaminsky's DNS hack -- using DNS servers on the public Internet as "dead drops," with messages stashed on them that can only be retrieved by people with the secret: In each DNS query, 7 bits are reserved for a number of flags, one of which is the Recursion Desired (RD) flag. If set to 0, the [...]

Super-Secret Spy Lens

Super-Secret Spy Lens

Candid shots of people just living their lives and doing real things completely unaware that they were on camera. The Super-Secret Spy Lens, which is basically a periscope that attaches your SLR's zoom lens, allows your point that zoom lens as a "fake out" object. It uses a secret cut-out on the side and a precision mirror assembly inside to let [...]

Holiday Gift Guide: Nonfiction Books

Holiday Gift Guide: Nonfiction Books

Here's part one of the LandoftheFreeish Holiday Gift Guide, a roundup of the bestselling items from this year's reviews. Today's installment is nonfiction books... Googling Security (Greg Conti) A book that opens your eyes to how much you disclose to Google The Pirate's Dilemma: How Youth Culture Is Reinventing Capitalism (Matt [...]

I made this, you play this, we are enemies… the weirdest game I’ve ever played

I made this, you play this, we are enemies… the weirdest game I’ve ever played

I don't know that I've ever seen any computer art quite as -- I'm sorry, there's no other way of putting this -- as fucked up as "I made this, you play this, we are enemies," a Flash game that really strongly resembles the unmistakable bonkerosity of the complicated sketches left behind the crazy people who used to sit at their own tables in the [...]

NotifyMeWhenItsUp Emails You When a Web Site Returns or Disappears

NotifyMeWhenItsUp Emails You When a Web Site Returns or Disappears

Web site Notify Me When It's Up performs a very simple but worthwhile task: It sends you an email when a downed site you want to visit returns to the internet. Similar to Down For Everyone or Just Me, which helps you figure out if a site you're having trouble reaching is really down or its, well, just you—Notify Me When It's Up takes the next [...]

MP3s Prevent Piracy

MP3s Prevent Piracy

If you're looking to attack a pirate ship, forget cutlasses and cannon balls. Go full speed ahead with an MP3 sonic blast. At least that's the latest method being used in sea warfare, as highlighted last week when a sonic blast was used to scare away Somali pirates from attacking a chemical tanker close to the Horn of Africa. The weapon, which [...]

Visualized Linux Boot Sequence

Visualized Linux Boot Sequence

Most of us don't appreciate all the processes involved with our OS's boot sequence; we're far more interested in watching that status bar fill. In this visualization of the Linux boot sequence, each function is a node, and each line connecting the nodes represents a call, direct branch, or indirect branch. The image itself was created via [...]

“Single?” Lawn Signs Conquer the American Landscape

“Single?” Lawn Signs Conquer the American Landscape

This is a good, and really thoroughly researched, expose on the company behind those annoying lawn signs... I always see those signs around the city but I thought it was just some small scale operation. Over the past two years, I have developed a growing fascination with lawn signs.  Not the ones advertising politicians or plumbers, but the ones [...]

Capitalize on Call Avoidance

Capitalize on Call Avoidance

This may sound familiar… You need to make a phone call, yet are dreading the possible response. As you are dialing, you hope and pray that the other person won’t pick up -  wouldn’t it be great if you could just leave a message and avoid the whole conversation? Now, you can!  I recently found out about a new free service offered by [...]

Cruel blue screen of death prank with revolting ASCII goatse

Cruel blue screen of death prank with revolting ASCII goatse

Make contributor Joe Grand (aka "Kingpin") shows his BSODomizer prank gadget in action. Complete plans are available or you can buy an assembled unit for $79. What is BSODomizer?BSODomizer is a small, battery-powered, mischievous electronic gadget that interfaces between a laptop or desktop and VGA monitor and flashes images onto the monitor at [...]

Accept credit card payments from your iPhone

Accept credit card payments from your iPhone

The trouble with credit cards isn't being able to accept them... The trouble is when you do start trying to accept them, the fee's eat up all your profits. Setup fees, traction fees, value of the transaction fees, monthly account fees. What the hell, I found that I could make use of a fed credit union and cut out all most all those [...]

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