This is a post in a series appearing each Friday, setting out some articles, videos, podcasts and the like that contributors at Slaw are enjoying and that you might find interesting. The articles tend to be longer than blog posts and shorter than books, just right for that stolen half hour on the weekend. It’s also likely that most of them won’t be about law — just right for etc.
Please let us have your recommendations for what we and our readers might like.
University of Oxford – Proto-Elamite – Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative – No, that's not your child's drawing of Santa's reindeer you see above you. It's writing. Proto-Elamite, as it happens, the oldest as-yet undeciphered writing that we know of, some 5,000 years old. Researchers are about to crack the code. According to a BBC article, which is easier going than the official site, offers of help in the project are being fielded. People who work for doctors, this is your moment.
We Made This – Being for the Benefit of Mr Kite! – Nick Esdaile and Joe Fellows – Speaking of deciphering old documents, here's a video about a recent reconstruction of the Victorian poster that inspired Lennon's song. Song lyrics included on the website. And even better, a YouTube video here of the actual recording of the song complete with all the outtakes.
Zythophile – Shades, dives and other varieties of British bar – Martyn Cornell – Seeing that we're in Britain, I thought we might stay there and have a drink. This piece looks back at the way drinking establishments were set up and labelled in the past. Nice bit of social history.
Core77 – LiquiGlide: MIT's Slippery Coating Liberates Ketchup – Perrin Drumm – Some other kinds of liquids don't go down quite as easily, down the bottle sides, that is. Enter science. A new "non-toxic" coating lets the good stuff slide right off the plastic and on to your ("non-toxic") food. Watch and wonder.
PandoDaily – The Return of Dean Kamen – Adam L. Penenberg – And when it comes to wonders, it's a wonder that I have not yet ridden on a Segway, that strange dork-cool scooter invented by Mr. Kamen. Here we learn (not quite as much as we'd like) about the possibility he's ready to release his efficient version of that old curiosity, the Stirling engine.
Skeptical Science – The Escalator: Viewing Global Warming – dana1981 – It's okay to be skeptical about more energy out than in, but what about global warming. Here's a whole site dedicated to getting the science right and clear. This animated graph helps explain certain downturns by putting them in the larger context.
Earth Observatory – Image of the Day – NASA – And what a larger context NASA's pics provide! A photo a day will keep you supplied with wonder. But if you can only come at this occasionally, you can roam back through the gallery.
YouTube – London Heathrow Approach Time-Lapse – Cargospotter – Here the gallery is run like a movie. The filmmaker is one of those guys you used to see at the fence around airports taking pictures of the plance. Guess you still do see them. Here these big beasts flick into view and off stage like gulls on the wind. Hypnotic.
The Guardian – Crime's grand tour: European detective fiction – Mark Lawson – Planes are one way to escape. Fiction, especially genre fiction, is another (cheaper and safer) way. Here the author explores the European masters "from Holmes and Poirot to Montalbano and the rise of Scandi-noir."
Vimeo – Oh, How Love – L CON, Marc De Pape – De Pape runs some lovely old, old shots of Toronto behind a nostalgia laden song from the new albumn by L CON (Lisa Conway). I'm not sure she hits some of her notes, but the glissandos add to the wistfulness.