Watch: A new NASA documentary narrated by William Shatner

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NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia turns 100 this year. In celebration, the space agency produced this short documentary and enlisted Captain Kirk himself, William Shatner, to narrate. Here are just a few highlights from NASA Langley’s incredible history:

• In times of peace and war, NASA Langley helped to create a better airplane, including unique wing shapes, sturdier structures, the first engine cowlings, and drag cleanup that enabled the Allies to win World War II.

• Langley broke new ground in aeronautical research with a suite of first-of-their-kind wind tunnels that led to numerous advances in commercial, military and vertical flight, such as helicopters and other rotorcraft.

• Langley researchers laid the foundation for the U.S. manned space program, played a critical role in the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs, and developed the lunar-orbit rendezvous concept that made the Moon landing possible.

• Development by Langley of a variety of satellite-borne instrumentation has enabled real-time monitoring of planet-wide atmospheric chemistry, air quality, upper-atmosphere ozone concentrations, the effects of clouds and air-suspended particles on climate, and other conditions affecting Earth’s biosphere.

• Protecting astronauts from harm is the aim of Langley’s work on the Orion Launch Abort System, while its work on materials and structures for lightweight and affordable space transportation and habitation will keep future space travelers safe.

• Helping to create environmentally benign aeronautical technologies has been a focus of Langley research, including concepts to reduce drag, weight, fuel consumption, emissions, and lessen noise.

NASA Langley: Innovation at 100

This boat is a hot tub and vice versa

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The Hot Tub Boat is both at the same time. You can rent one to float around Seattle’s Lake Union or custom order your very own from HotTubBoats.com.

“Well, the hot tub boat is fifteen feet over all, she’s about six feet wide, about close to 400 gallons of water in the hot tub,” says (Seattle-based co-inventor Adam) Karpenske. “It can take six people on the boat at any time.”

“She does her haul speed at about three-and-a-half knots. It’s controlled by a little joy stick. Kind of like a lot of people have equated it to ‘if you ever played Pac-man, you can drive the hot tub boat.'”

Hit the water in a Hot Tub Boat(King5 via Weird Universe)

Watch: Determined goat breaks into office by butting glass door until it shatters

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A small polyurethane company in Louisville, CO was vandalized on Sunday, with its front glass door completely smashed in, and at first the owners thought they’d been robbed. But when police came and realized nothing had been stolen, they checked the surveillance camera, only to find it was delinquent goat – backed up by a goat gang who can be spotted in the background of the video – who was determined to do some damage. The goat butted against the glass 20 minutes until it finally shattered the door.

Quoted in The Daily Camera, the company’s owner, Greg Cappaert, has a good sense of humor about it:

“He must have seen his reflection in the door and thought it was another goat. He was trying to beat up the whole building…Everybody had a good chuckle over it.”

‘Legacy,’ a short film from Eric Mittleman

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Watch our longtime Boing Boing TV collaborator Eric Mittleman’s short film, ‘Legacy.’

It’s free to screen online at YouTube and Vimeo, and has been running on-board Virgin America flights, where Eric and I produce the Boing Boing channel full of wonderful videos.

About ‘Legacy,’ Eric tells us,

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Dissociative psychedelic Ketamine may help suicidal children

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Ketamine is a short-acting dissociative anesthetic commonly used on animals and sometimes people. Of course it’s also beloved by many psychonauts for its unusual dreamlike or “out of body” psychedelic effects. (It’s someti While Ketamine has been shown for years to help treat depression, anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder in adults, researchers at Yale School of Medicine now report that it has great promise as a fast-acting intervention for children in crisis. From Scientific American:

It was less dramatic to watch than I expected, but the kids were definitely high. There was a lot of giggling involved, and they often said that they felt like time was changing and that their bodies felt ‘funny’ and sometimes numb. Nicole, (a suicidal 14-year-old,) admitted, “I’m not gonna lie. I like the feeling of it.”

Perhaps more dramatic than the trips themselves, which happened in a carefully controlled procedure room with a psychiatrist and anesthesiologist ready to intervene if needed, were the interviews that came after. I could see the weight of depression lifted from these patients within hours. Adolescents who were previously ready to end their own lives became bright and hopeful. Psychiatry has never seen a drug intervention so powerful and fast acting. While most anti-depressants take weeks to work and offer modest improvement, ketamine offers dramatic improvement in less than a day…

Dr. Michael Bloch, Yale child psychiatrist and principal investigator of several controlled trials for ketamine for adolescents, points out that the drug is only used for select patients who have severe mental health problems that have not responded to other medications. The infusions are provided in a clinical trial setting, where doctors collect efficacy data and carefully watch for side effects. For each of his patients, the theoretical risks of ketamine are carefully weighed against the risk of suicide. For Nicole, who seemed likely to die from suicide, the calculus was not difficult.

The Ketamine Breakthrough for Suicidal Children(SciAm)

How to combat manspreading on the subway – sit on the offender

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Lifehacker has a list of ways to deal with a manspreader taking up a seat. Asking politely is probably effective, but my favorite is Cassie J Sneider’s technique: plop down on the manspreader’s leg.

“Excuse me,” I said, standing in front of a thirtysomething guy with his legs spread so far, it looked like he was doing some sort of post-vasectomy physical therapy exercise. He ignored me.

As a woman, I am used to this, so I gestured to the seat and said excuse me again. Nothing. I checked and he wasn’t wearing headphones.

This man, like the three or four others taking up multiple seats on this train car, are the center of our universe from sun-up until sundown, never once considering the lady with the stroller, the World War II vet stooped over a cane, or the child riding home from school alone.

We all go about our ride politely avoiding calling them out on their selfishness, holding grocery bags and diaper bags and the weight of all our frustration, seething. In that moment, something became crystal clear to me: seething doesn’t help anyone, but sitting on a dude sure is satisfying.

I waited a moment. He leisurely stretched his calves, turned away from me, and then I sat on him.

“Excuse me,” I said, using my bony ass to crush his thigh. Outside of a horror movie, I have never seen anyone react so quickly to get away from another human being. There was terror, then disgust, then anger. I took out my book and turned to him. “Thank you,” I said, and then smiled like Kathleen Turner in Serial Mom. It would have been rude otherwise.

Image: FriedC/Wikipedia

Russian real estate firm employee was mystery 8th person at Don. Jr.’s Trump Tower meeting

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The eighth person present at that June 2016 Trump Tower meeting in which Donald Trump Jr. hoped to get a hold of damaging, hacked info on his dad’s Democratic presidential rival, Hillary Clinton?

We now know that mystery eighth person at the Don Jr. meeting was Ike Kaveladze.

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If you want to learn about Arduino, this is the book to get

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Arduino is on open-source electronics prototyping platform that lets you make interactive stuff without having a degree in electrical engineering.

For about $25 you can buy a credit card sized circuit board that has input connections (for buttons, knobs, light sensors, microphones, humidity sensors, fart detectors, Internet signals, etc) and output connections (for servo motors, LEDs, buzzers, speakers, stepper motors, vibrators, etc). You write programs on your computer to tell the Arduino how to process the input signals and how to activate the output components. This program is uploaded to the Arduino’s microprocessor, making it self-contained.

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Jane Austen is the face of Britain’s new £10 note

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Novelist Jane Austen will soon become the latest historical figure to be honored on a British banknote, and the Bank of England has revealed an early run of the printed bills. Tuesday is the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s death.

The author of classics like Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility and Emma will take the place of biologist Charles Darwin on the £10 note. The Jane Austen tenner is expected to come out in September, 2017.

From Reuters:

The central bank has printed an initial run of a billion of the new notes, which are known in Britain as “tenners”, after last year’s launch of a five pound note made from a polymer film that the BoE said is more durable and harder to forge.

(…) The writer was buried in Winchester Cathedral in 1817 and completed many of her best-known works such as “Pride and Prejudice” and “Emma” in the nearby village of Chawton.

“Ten pounds would have meant a lot to Jane Austen, about the same as 1,000 pounds ($1,300) would mean to us today,” BoE Governor Mark Carney said at the launch of the new note in Winchester.

Austen received a 10 pound publisher’s advance for her first novel and the new banknote bears a quotation “I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!” from her later work, “Pride and Prejudice”.

The quotation came from a character who in fact had no interest in books and was merely trying to impress a potential suitor. It drew a mix of amusement and criticism in the media when it appeared on an initial design of the note in 2013.

[PHOTO, TOP: Bank of England governor Mark Carney poses with the concept design for the new banknote featuring Jane Austen outside the Jane Austen House Museum in Chawton, southern England. (Chris Ratcliffe/Reuters)]

Evaporative cooling bandanas really work

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Human beings are incredible evaporative cooling systems, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use a little help when things are really hot. These cooling bandanas work wonders.

During a recent heatwave, my daughter and I had to cross the Nevada desert in an AC-less VW Van. This was done to honor my parents 50 years of marriage. Our family shows love with great suffering. The kid and I relied on these Miracool bandanas to help us survive.

Sewn into the lining are absorbent gel crystals of some composition. When soaked in h2o they really expand. Slowly the gel releases water, and its evaporation cools you down.

We found they’d last a full day, but needed to be resoaked after a full day of driving in such a dry climate. Soak them overnight in the fridge for an extra cold start to the day.

You get a pack of 4 for $9.

MiraCool Cooling Bandanas. Pack of 4 via Amazon

Billions of dollars’ worth of predatory student loans may…just…vanish

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Private student loans are the worst of a bad bunch, with incredibly high interest rates and penalties on funds used to finance educations at the kinds of “universities” who later get their accreditations yanked for academic malpractice and deceptive advertising — universities that target the most naive kids from the least educated backgrounds, load them up with debt, waste four years of their lives, and pop them out the door with a useless “degree.”

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You have a startup idea you want to develop into reality. This business plan app in our store shows you how.

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New business ideas are a dime a dozen; everyone and their cousin has a concept for a new app or service that may or may not revolutionize a small slice of the world. Whether it’s novel ways of ordering food, or time savers that only apathetic wealthy people would pay for, coming up with your own ‘like Uber, but for X’ is the easy part of growing a successful company. Where many fail is in hammering out the nitty-gritty details to actually realize their goals.

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Amazon files for meal-kit trademarks, and Blue Apron shares shrivel in fearful anticipation

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Everyone’s favorite Internet monopoly Amazon looks like it’s about to eat Blue Apron’s lunch. Amazon just announced plans to boy high-end grocery chain Whole Foods last month in June, and has also recently filed for trademarks around prepped meal kit services– that’s Blue Apron’s sole business.

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This cannabis cigar contains 12 grams of weed and costs $420

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A weed store in Seattle called Leira makes pricey cannabis cigars.

From The Potlander:

Seattle-based Leira rolls cannabis cigars, the smallest of which is a petite three-and-one-quarter-inch cigarillo size that retails for $110 in Washington shops, like Freedom Market of Longview, where I snagged mine. They sell out “within hours or the weekend they are dropped,” the company told us, as cannabis users splurge on a product that “represents success, luxury, and sophistication.”

This cigarillo includes 4 grams of flower, coated with a half-gram of rosin, wrapped in cannabis leaves. It’s advertised as burning slowly over an hour. They also sell a six-inch Corona, which retails for $420, and which is filled with 12 grams of flower, sealed with 3 grams of rosin and also covered in cannabis leaves, that they claim will burn for us to five hours.

Leira works hard to make the packaging look lux as well: each cannagar is sold in a corked glass jar, topped with drips of purple wax.

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