You Might Like… a Number of Amusements on Colophons, Consequences, Drones, Troglodytes, Pink, and More

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.

Publishing Trendsetter – A Publisher’s Menagerie: Stories behind Publishers’ Animal Logos – Elisabeth Watson – Ever wondered what’s with the penguin logo? or the borzoi of Alfred A. Knopf? Now Watson fills you in on the animal colophons that grace the opening pages of your favourite books. Well, some of them at least.

Boing Boing – Circus Galop: the bonkers, non-human-playable anthem used to stress-test automatic pianos – Cory Doctorow – This is wild: a video of a “mechanical piano” playing a piece written way back when in order to test player pianos, a piece of such ferocity that no single human being could manage it. Now, what if they got those five kids who videoed themselves playing one guitar…

This American Life – Reap What You Sow – A radio documentary on “people living with the unintended consequences of their decisions,” including those following Alabama’s new “immigration law,” making life difficult for immigrants, and “not just the undocumented ones.” – What did people do in a medieval city? – Shawn Vincent – A list, seemingly for gamers to use, taken from a variety of sources including the tax list for Paris in 1292. Now you can discover if you want to become a “hayward,” a “thimblerigger,” or an “ostiary” when you grow up. Not many surprises here, but there are a few terms that might be new to you.

YouTube – A Swarm of Nano Quadrotors – the GRASP Lab, University of Pennsylvania – These mini drones can be unsettling at the best of times, but a squad of them dancing in step is downright creepy. I like the line quoted in one of the comments on the (fairly impressive) video: “I, for one, welcome our new nano robotic overlords.”

BBC – We’re All in the Same Boat, Aren’t We? – Adam Curtis – An illuminating history of big ship cruising, both above and below decks. Curtis wonders whether this story isn’t an allegory for what’s happening in the larger Western society.

Wired Magazine – The New French Hacker-Artist Underground – Jon Lackman – Paris has an unequalled web of underground tunnels and passageways. A group known as Urban eXperiment, or UX, carries out “shocking acts of cultural preservation and repair, with an ethos of ‘restoring those invisible parts of our patrimony that the government has abandoned or doesn’t have the means to maintain.'”

YouTube – There is no pink light – minute physics – There’s no pink stripe in the rainbow. Everyone sort of knows that, but what you might not know is that pink is what happens when red meets violet coming around the colour circle the other way, as it were. Watch the vid. Explains it better.

Bloomberg – Aristotle’s Ideal, Killed by Web (Part 3) – Winifred Gallagher – The author of “Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life” offers the last in a three-part series of excerpts from her forthcoming book “New: Understanding Our Need for Novelty and Change”.

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