You Might Like … a Brief Visit to Mars, Opulence, a One-Room Hotel, Baarle-Hertog, Glyndebourne, 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.

360pano – Martian solar day two – Curiosity Rover / NASA – That’s the sun you’re looking at, as seen from the fourth planet out. Take this huge panoramic photo to its fullest size on your browser; roam around; wonder.

New York Times – Ryan, Romney and the Veil of Opulence – Benjamin Hale – This is a take on John Rawls’s veil of ignorance to talk about fairness in politics. “The veil of opulence would have us screen for fairness by asking what the most fortunate among us are willing to bear.”

Core77 – Hypercubus, A Hotel Room That Travels Like You Do – Perrin Drumm – And the most fortunate among us might be interested in the fact that you can take it with you — provided you’re only on a holiday. This attractive mini-dwelling is being pitched as a pop-up hotel room you can plunk down wherever you’d like. (Might make good housing for the homeless, no?)

Foreign Policy – The 2012 Failed States Index: Interactive Map and Rankings – Blaine Sheldon – Or the stateless of the world, of whom there would seem to be many, if the failed state concept holds up. Canada, by the way, is a healthy green, though — and this is my favourite line on the page — “Due to technical problems, Newfoundland is white and cannot be colored in.”

BLDGBLOG – Baarle-Hertog – anon – Not a failed state, at least not yet, Belgium is in some small measure an entangled state. This is a map and a brief account of the city where which it interpenetrates with The Netherlands. And we think we’ve got some complicated border towns here! (The situation here is remarkably similar to that in the fascinating novel The City and The City by China Miéville.)

Traffic England – Live Traffic Information – Highways Agency – Across the Channel to another sort of entanglement — and the start of an interesting system. Information provided by the GPS instruments on fleets of trucks and other vehicles is aggregated and transformed into a live map of conditions on the major roads in England. Zoom in for really useful detail.

Glyndebourne Festival – Le nozze di Figaro – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – Don’t need a traffic report to get to this opera at Glyndebourne. Just go to this link at 6:00pm (BST) to see the live performance. I think that converts to noon today so you’d better take an early lunch. If you miss it, there’s lots else to enjoy on the site.

Vimeo – Double – Double Robotics – Of course, if this invention takes hold, your boss will be everywhere, whether or not you’re on lunch. Can you imagine how (little) long this peeping tool would last in most places of work? / YouTube – Magical heart rate monitor iPhone app – Hau-Yu Wu et al. – Whereas this invention strikes me as really useful: scientists have developed means to discern and amplify changes in video that are too small for the eye to notice, with the result that a host of hidden processes become visible. Oh, and there’s an app for it, too.

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