An important message from Cave Johnson

"Extra-Earth Outsourcing Initiative: Disclaimer: Any resemblance to Earths not residing in the public domain is guaranteed by the physical laws of multiverse theory, and therefore not actionable."

"This is not a dramatization. An Earth where sea mollusks have created an advanced land-based society with wholly inappropriate bipedal keyboards is guaranteed to exist."

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Hulu to require Cable TV subscription

Bwaaahahahhaha! *snerk* Bwhaaaaaa!

Hulu, which attracted 31 million unique users in March under a free-for-all model, is taking its first steps to change to a model where viewers will have to prove they are a pay-TV customer to watch their favorite shows, sources tell The Post.

It's like they're trying to chase their customers away!

So lemme get this straight -- Hulu started out by having everything, but with ads that you can't even fast-forward through, and then they crippled it to only have many first-run things a week late, and then they crippled it again to only have one back-season... And did I mention that it still makes you watch ads that you can't fast-forward through... And then they added a pay service, Hulu Plus, which has some stuff that Hulu doesn't but doesn't have a lot of stuff that plain-old Hulu does have... which you have to pay for but that still has ads you can't fast-forward through.... and now they're going to change them so that you can't watch any of it -- even with ads -- without proving that you also subscribe to cable TV that you don't watch, even (one assumes) for things that originally aired over "free" network TV.

Are these guys acting as The Pirate Bay's PR and Customer Outreach department, or what? Have they been so thoroughly infiltrated?

Oh, and, "Don't let Pay TV be the Monster in your Living Room! If you want to stop Pay TV and save Free Televsion, sign the petition in the lobby of this theatre!"

Previously, previously.

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DNA Lounge update

DNA Lounge update, wherein you vote for us in Best of SF.
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Sealand to form Roller Derby Team

"No home games."

"The Principality of Sealand is delighted to announce its own all-female roller derby team and wishes it every success in this up and coming sport" said Prince Regent Michael of Sealand. "No home games."

The new team will be formed of skaters from the South Wales area, selected for their skill and commitment.

Previously.

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I just cancelled DirecTV.

I only had to say, "No really, I just want you to cancel my account" twice, and "Let me talk to your manager" once.

(They were trying to tell me "we're going to charge you an extra fee if you don't mail your receiver back to us -- the receiver I bought, did not rent, at a local store -- until after the third time I said, "No, that's not going to happen" and he put me on hold for 30 seconds and pretended to consult with his manager.)

Previously.

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A conspiracy of the auto industry, you say? Why that's just crazy talk.

The Invention of Jaywalking

Drivers who kill or maim pedestrians with their vehicles are still only rarely treated as criminals, as long as they are not drunk and do not flee the scene. Even that is sometimes not enough to merit serious charges.

It wasn't always like this. Browse through New York Times accounts of pedestrians dying after being struck by automobiles prior to 1930, and you'll see that in nearly every case, the driver is charged with something like "technical manslaughter." Across the country, drivers were held criminally responsible when they killed or injured people with their vehicles. [...]

The paper opined that even in the case of a child darting out into traffic, a driver who disclaimed responsibility was committing "the perjury of a murderer."

Norton explains that in the automobile's earliest years, the principles of common law applied to crashes. In the case of a collision, the larger, heavier vehicle was deemed to be at fault. The responsibility for crashes always lay with the driver. [...]

Local auto clubs and dealers recognized that cars would be a lot harder to sell if there was a cap on their speed. So they went into overdrive in their campaign against the initiative. They sent letters to every individual with a car in the city [...] The industry lobbied to change the law, promoting the adoption of traffic statutes to supplant common law. The statutes were designed to restrict pedestrian use of the street and give primacy to cars. The idea of "jaywalking" - a concept that had not really existed prior to 1920 - was enshrined in law.

The Crisis of Pedestrianism

He wondered about that inescapable word: pedestrian. If we were to find ourselves out hiking on a forest trail and spied someone approaching at a distance, he wanted to know, would we think to ourselves, "Here comes a pedestrian"?

Of course we wouldn't. That approaching figure would simply be a person. Pedestrian is a word born from opposition to other modes of travel; the Latin pedester, on foot, gained currency by its semantic tension with equester, on horse. But there is an implied -- indeed, synonymous -- pejorative. This dates from Ancient Greece. [...] In other words, not to be on a horse, flying or otherwise, was to be utterly unremarkable and mundane. To this day, Ronkin was intimating, the word pedestrian bears not only that slightly alien whiff, but the scars of condescension.

Simply by going out for a walk, I had become a strange being, studied by engineers, inhabiting environments whose physical features are determined by a rulebook-enshrined average 3 foot-per-second walking speed, my rights codified by signs. (Why not just write: "Stop for People"?) On those same signs in Savannah were often attached additional signs, advising drivers not to give to panhandlers (and to call 911 if physically intimidated), subtly equating walking with being exposed to an urban menace -- or perhaps being the menace.

Having taken all this information in, we would gingerly step into the marked crosswalk, that declaration of rights in paint, and try to gauge whether approaching vehicles would yield. They typically did not. Even in one of America's most "pedestrian-friendly" cities -- a seemingly innocent phrase that itself suddenly seemed strange to me -- one was always in danger of being relegated to a footnote.

Which is what walking in America has become: An act dwelling in the margins, an almost hidden narrative running beneath the main vehicular text. Indeed, the semantics of the term pedestrian would be a mere curiosity, but for one fact: America is a country that has forgotten how to walk. [...]

Despite these upsides, in an America enraptured by the cultural prosthesis that is the automobile, walking has become a lost mode, perceived as not a legitimate way to travel but a necessary adjunct to one's car journey, a hobby, or something that people without cars -- those pitiable "vulnerable road users," as they are called with charitable condescension -- do.

Previously, previously, previously, previously.

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Tough policy.

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Context-Free Patent Art. World falls to Serfdom.

Previously.

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Mormon Flow Chart for Your Soul

This is some Hubbard Mark Super VII Quantum Electropsychometer shit right here.

Seems like there's a lot of confusion lately over what Mormons actually believe. If you are a befuddled believer or heathen, here's a handy chart to help you out. This guide can help you track the progress of your soul from its disembodied birth in heaven to its final resting place in one of the four houses of the afterlife. Come to think of it, perhaps this would make a good board game...

...and the footnotes.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

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MaP Testing Protocol

Paste extrusion into 350 gram segments.

"Toilet model maximum performance (MaP) level is identified as the maximum media loading (in discrete increments expressed in grams) at which toilet model successfully clears all media from fixture in at least four of five attempts. [...] Test specimens may contain small volumes of air, however, specimens that float shall not be used."

Previously.

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