July 1, 2005

War of the Shotgun

  • Optical Illusions - Free Picture Illusions (science, fun, illusion)
    • Optical illuisons are like hacking your brain. Browse some of these well-known illusions.
  • RaidenX - Presented By Flash Player (flash, games, 80s)
    • It’s a flash tribute ot the Raiden games of yore. I love those purple powerups! Scroller/shooter.
  • rmccown.org - GeoGoogleCacheMaps ™ (geocaching, gps, geography, maps)
    • Bob’s making it easy for us to upload GPS data and see it superimposed on a Google map. This rocks the party. Use GPSBabel, if you need to, to get your GPS data into GPX file format. Then, upload your less-than-25k file up to his service. Voila! Currently works with track files… but more features are in the works.
  • mq.swf (animation, flash, funny, japanese)
    • What if Michael Jackson were trapped in a bunch of old video games? If you’ve ever asked yourself that question, the answer is now before you.
  • Brainpixels - Extracting Video from Cat Brains (science, video, blog, neurology)
    • Are they really making progress in the ability to “jack into” the brain of another being (that being being a cat at this point)? This blog entry claims we are.
  • Harris Cyclery Articles (repair, bicycle, howto, reference)
    • I catch ribbing around the office for not having my bicycle repaired (there is a bike shop down the street). But I have confessed to having a fear of admitting that I cannot fix my bike myself. I’m hoping that the copious articles on this site will help.
  • 2005 Newport Black Ships Festival (japanese, fun, recreation, summer)
    • The annual Japanese-American festival held in Newport, RI.
  • tetka.swf (wtf, flash, odd, funny)
    • Ever wonder what a human body would look like falling through a sky? Me neither. But this is just weird enough to add to the shotgun post.
  • How to Meditate (exercise, health, lifehacks, howto)
    • Meditation can help you become less connected to things. Wonder if it works with food cravings.
  • Penny Alcohol Stove (diy, howto, cooking, stove, camping)
    • This site describes how to make your own compact camp alcohol stove. Also, instructions on building a compact wood stove. I don’t camp anymore, but I love this stuff!
  • FoxIt PDF Reader : Lifehacker (firefox, free, software, tips)
    • FoxIt PDF reader for faster PDF reading. Also, some tips on speeding up Acrobat 6
  • wtfsticker.com (politics, humor)
    • Whiskey Tango Foxtrow. “W” is for whiskey.
Posted by James at July 1, 2005 8:39 AM
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Hey, that GeoGoogleCacheMaps thing is the greatest thing since sliced bread!


Posted by: nwoCcM boB at July 1, 2005 2:52 PM

Waaaah, this one has me confused:
Please explain. That way, I'll still feel like an idiot, but at least I'll know why.

Posted by: Julie at July 1, 2005 3:13 PM

It's supposed to have you confused.

The figures look like triangles, but they aren't. The hypotenuse of the composite figure is not a straight line (not in either case, I don't think.)

Print it out and hold a straight edge up to both and you will see.

Yeah - this one is tricky. But I've seen one that is worse. The disappearing leprechaun. I think Martin Gardner came up with it. Based on a similar principle, but a leprechaun disappears. And I can never tell where he goes. Very frustrating.

To this day it is the only illusion of that type that consistently confounds me.

Posted by: James at July 1, 2005 3:20 PM

Actually, it turns out it was Sam Loyd who invented the leprechauns puzzle. And here it is, with an explanation:


Posted by: James at July 1, 2005 3:38 PM

And now I get what's happening.

Another childhood mystery solved.

Posted by: James at July 1, 2005 3:39 PM

You mean they CHEATED??? Wow, you're right. I did have to print it out to be sure.

I'd never seen the leprechaun one before. I actually found that one less confusing (and annoying). I expect trickery from irregular-shaped leprechauns, but I will never again be duped by innocent-looking triangles.

Posted by: Julie at July 1, 2005 3:50 PM

I was just a kid when I saw the leprechaun one, and I wasn't able to find a copy on the net lo these many years, once I had lost the original slips of paper I cut out of Scientific American.

The reason that the triangles don't bug me so much is not because of any expectation. I can see that those lines aren't straight, whereas with the leprechauns it takes me some more looking to see that the leprechauns are all a little bit taller.

And when I was a kid, I didn't notice that at all. Or think it was possible.

Stupid kid!

Posted by: James at July 1, 2005 3:58 PM

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