Chinese Powdered Baby Flesh Pills: Adulterated.

South Korea says it will increase customs inspections targeting capsules containing powdered human flesh.

The Korea Customs Service said it had found almost 17,500 of the capsules being smuggled into the country from China since August 2011.

The powdered flesh, which officials said came from dead babies and foetuses, is reportedly thought by some to cure disease and boost stamina. But officials said the capsules were full of bacteria and a health risk.

"It was confirmed those capsules contain materials harmful to the human body, such as super bacteria. We need to take tougher measures to protect public health," a customs official was quoted as saying by the Korea Times.

Ministry spokesman Deng Haihua, quoted at the time in China Daily, said China had "strict management of disposal of infant and foetal remains as well as placentas".

Previously, previously.

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Travis Shrugged

Travis Shrugged: The creepy, dangerous ideology behind Silicon Valley's Cult of Disruption

The pro-Disruption argument goes like this: In a digitally connected age, there's absolutely no need for public carriage laws (or hotel laws, or food safety laws, or... or...) because the market will quickly move to drive out bad actors. If an Uber driver behaves badly, his low star rating will soon push him out of business.

It's a compelling message but also one with dire potential consequences for public safety, particularly for those who can't afford to take a $50 cab ride to Whole Foods.

I do enjoy any smackdown of Randites, and reading a Travis quote about how awesome it would be if a bunch of billionaires would go "on strike" to teach California some kind of lesson makes me want to delete the Uber app from my phone immediately.

On the other hand, the taxi situation in San Francisco is so useless and despicably corrupt that it's hard not to see this in the light of "the enemy of my enemy is my friend." If the Taxi Commission is against it, it can't be anything but good, right?

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

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We've Got a Fuzzbox and We're All Going to Die.

Well, this is depressing: Jo Dunne of Fuzzbox Dies Aged 43.

Jo Dunne, the guitarist of Birmingham punk band We've Got A Fuzzbox And We're Gonna Use It!!, has died aged 43.

The singer died from cancer in the city's St Mary's Hospice on Friday night.

I loved this band. Their first album, Bostin' Steve Austin, was just fantastic. They took a much poppier turn on the second album (once they graduated high school) but that first one was great.

My favorites of their videos:

This playlist appears to be the entirety of the Look at the Hits on That!! DVD.

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Evolution of Type, Exhibits 22-26

Andreas Scheiger:

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Sportball's inevitable consequences

What I don't understand is all you people who are acting shocked, shocked at the discovery that sports fans will use any excuse to destroy things.

It's like you haven't been paying attention to anything in the history of ever.

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A hive of scum and villainy

"All that transactional content is just sitting there! blah blah Facebook blah blah Amazon blah blah fundraising this week."

I really need to stop forgetting to bring my headphones to this cafe. It didn't used to be this bad here.

Previously.

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a Kickstarter for individual shows

Bring the Gig:

So, this is basically the same thing that Kim Boekbinder did last year but they're trying to build their own Kickstarter-like infrastructure around it.

The new kink here is that if the show reaches a funding goal then the people who pre-bought tickets get their money back and see the show for free, but people who buy tickets after the goal was reached have to pay. (Which can't work, see below.)

It's an interesting idea, but they have done exactly one show so far so take it with a huge grain of salt.

Fans fund goals by purchasing BringTickets before an event's deadline expires. When an event is funded the "Gig is On" and standard Box Office Tickets start to sell. If funding falls short then all funding participants receive a full refund.

Reward: If Box Office Ticket sales reach the magic number, BringTicket purchasers get their money back and go to the concert for free.

What happens after the goal is reached?

After the goal is reached we start selling Box Office Tickets just like any show does. If Box Office Ticket sales reach the magic number all BringTicket purchasers for the event go for free.

What happens if we reach the goal but no Box Office Tickets sell?

Then the fans who funded the show get an exclusive show and have already paid for their tickets.

How do you set the goal amount (How is the cost of the show determined)?

Bring the Gig negotiates and confirms pricing with artists, venues, security, event staff, lighting, sound, insurance and everything else needed to produce a show. We total all these expenses and use that total as the goal amount.

Yeah, this part cannot possibly fly. They can't do that and still get any venues to sign on. Taking the risk of putting on the show for free exactly reduces the problem to that of booking an unknown band with an unknown draw: in other words it obviates the need for schemes like BringTheTicket. The only way this can work is for the sales goal to be that the non-refundable sales exceed the costs, ignoring the refunds.

The goal of services like this is to convince the venue that the show will do well. If you are an established act with history in town, you don't have to do that, the numbers already tell the story. A service like this is for bands that the venues know nothing about: it's a way to eliminate risk. But instead they've just gone and put the risk back in.

Without eliminating that risk, you might as well just be using one of the many gig-matchmaking services like SonicBids who take a cut off the top.

Why don't you accept pledges instead of charging at the time of check-out?

Because pledges are not guaranteed funds, pledges increase the risk for everyone involved, including the fans buying tickets. Also, by offering the potential reward of attending a show for free it opens up too many potential loopholes for abuse.

I think what they just said here is, "Obviously Kickstarter has been a mammoth failure, so we don't want to follow them into the grave." Oh wait, I got that wrong, actually what it says is, "We can't figure out how to do that so we're gonna just lie about it."

Previously, previously.

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Notes and Mail annoyances

Dear Lazyweb,

Why do my pages in the "Notes" app keep duplicating themselves? It seems like I get a duplicate page every time I edit one of them, but it's a Heisenbug because I can't make it happen at will. If I edit a note on my iPhone, wait a few minutes, edit it again on my iPad, and repeat, it does the right thing. And yet, it seems like every time I edit a note then put my device away, the next day I've got two of them (the pre-edit version and the new one). WTF?

Also, is there still no way for me to get push notifications of new email on my iPhone? My mail lives on an SSL IMAP server under my own control, as is right and proper. I am unwilling to CC all of my email to Apple, Google or any other third party. And yet, I would like to get a notification when new mail arrives, instead of having to manually poll. Am I still out of luck?

Previously, previously.

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