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November 2, 2012
dailydot:

Unraveling Markovian Parallax Denigrate, the Internet’s oldest and weirdest mystery 
Spam. It’s the Internet’s most resilient parasite. Millions of messages pollute the Web’s pipes every day. Grow a monster penis. Lose 20 pounds. Help out an African prince. You know the drill.
A lot of it is garbled junk, sentences that read like a computer ingested the Oxford English Dictionary and vomited it back out. The results are bizarre and often unintentionally hilarious, a favorite subject of forwarded emails or, in the age of Twitter, cult celebrity. Spam account @horse_ebooks boasts 120,000 thousand followers thanks entirely to the accidental and absurdist poetry of its tweets.
But back in 1996, users of the proto-Web community Usenet got spammed with messages that reached an almost transcendent level of bizarre—a weirdness so precise it implied the influence of a very human intelligence. [more]

I read this piece all the way through, and it really reminded me of this magazine that no longer exists, but was a cover-to-cover read for me in the late ’90s: Internet Underground Magazine. It had some awesome design for the era, covered edgy topics, and even inspired some notable early memes. It was a great magazine because it seemed much more invested in the culture of the internet than its much-more-heralded competitor, Wired, did. But it closed in 1997, the victim of low ad sales and a change in ownership. It’s too bad. Like Suck.com, they missed out on the good part.
It just hit me that The Daily Dot is the modern equivalent of this magazine, which just made my respect for them go way up.

dailydot:

Unraveling Markovian Parallax Denigrate, the Internet’s oldest and weirdest mystery

Spam. It’s the Internet’s most resilient parasite. Millions of messages pollute the Web’s pipes every day. Grow a monster penis. Lose 20 pounds. Help out an African prince. You know the drill.

A lot of it is garbled junk, sentences that read like a computer ingested the Oxford English Dictionary and vomited it back out. The results are bizarre and often unintentionally hilarious, a favorite subject of forwarded emails or, in the age of Twitter, cult celebrity. Spam account @horse_ebooks boasts 120,000 thousand followers thanks entirely to the accidental and absurdist poetry of its tweets.

But back in 1996, users of the proto-Web community Usenet got spammed with messages that reached an almost transcendent level of bizarre—a weirdness so precise it implied the influence of a very human intelligence. [more]

I read this piece all the way through, and it really reminded me of this magazine that no longer exists, but was a cover-to-cover read for me in the late ’90s: Internet Underground Magazine. It had some awesome design for the era, covered edgy topics, and even inspired some notable early memes. It was a great magazine because it seemed much more invested in the culture of the internet than its much-more-heralded competitor, Wired, did. But it closed in 1997, the victim of low ad sales and a change in ownership. It’s too bad. Like Suck.com, they missed out on the good part.

It just hit me that The Daily Dot is the modern equivalent of this magazine, which just made my respect for them go way up.

19:05 // 1 year ago
March 27, 2012
There needs to be a very close look at the effectiveness of standardized testing, especially as it relates to certain children who come to school without the sufficient home life to succeed.
Former Georgia Attorney General Michael Bowers • Discussing an investigative report by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that shows that 196 of the country’s 3,125 have suspicious standardized testing results, suggesting high levels of cheating. (Atlanta’s already suffered from a high-profile cheating scandal of its own in the past year.) Some of the districts accused of cheating said they would investigate further, while others took to defending the integrity of their students. (For what it’s worth, the AJC defended its reporting on the story, with AJC Editor Kevin Riley saying that ”We believe in our methodology and are transparent about it.”) If cheating in standardized testing is widespread, does that suggest a problem with the schools or with the tests? source (viafollow)
14:42 // 2 years ago
November 29, 2011

Cyber Monday’s version of Black Friday drama: Counterfeit stuff

  • 150 counterfeit websites taken down on Cyber Monday source

» Don’t mess with our passion for shopping. After such a turnout for Black Friday, shoppers were ready for online deals on Monday. So were websites touting fake merchandise — from sports jerseys to DVDs to accessories. This was a part of the investigation called “Operation In Our Sites,” which has seized 350 such counterfeit sites since 2010.

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0:04 // 2 years ago
June 8, 2011

Louisiana may have an oil spill off its coast; pending investigation

Coast guard investigating alleged oil spill: Stress the “alleged,” as a Coast Guard spokesman has said it’s “too early” to make a definitive judgment. That said, a fisherman reported what he thought to be an oil spill “several miles long” off the Louisiana coast near Venice, and the Coast Guard has deployed to ascertain whether the offending substance is indeed oil, and if so where it may have come from. For obvious reasons, oil turning up off the Louisiana coast reminds us of bad, bad things. We hope like crazy this turns out okay. source

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18:50 // 3 years ago
April 12, 2011

Heart attack may derail Mubarak corruption investigation

Hosni Mubarak admitted to hospital: Mubarak, who was to appear before investigators on charges of corruption (subpoenas have been issued for him and his sons), has reportedly suffered a heart attack. Reports suggest he’s receiving treatment in Sharm el-Sheikh, a resort near the Red Sea where Mubarak has lived in exile since being driven from Egypt earlier this year. The former strongman is 82-years-old, and in failing health many Egyptians fear he will die before facing justice. Journalist Jano Charbel: “The fallen dictator must be locked up in a prison cell, not placed in a five-star hospital.” source

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16:49 // 3 years ago
March 7, 2011
Senator John Ensign to call it a career
John Ensign, signing off: The Nevada Senator is expected to announce he won’t seek reelection in 2012, opting instead to retire from public life. Ensign, 52, would face a winnable but nonetheless taxing battle to retain his seat in light of the ethics investigation against him, stemming from his extramarital affair with the wife of one of his top political aides. Ensign is one of Congress’ members of “The Family,” the secretive, moralistic Evangelical organization that operates out of the “C Street” house in Washington, which made his marital infidelity seem especially hypocritical and irritating to his detractors. (thanks pantslessprogressive) source
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John Ensign, signing off: The Nevada Senator is expected to announce he won’t seek reelection in 2012, opting instead to retire from public life. Ensign, 52, would face a winnable but nonetheless taxing battle to retain his seat in light of the ethics investigation against him, stemming from his extramarital affair with the wife of one of his top political aides. Ensign is one of Congress’ members of “The Family,” the secretive, moralistic Evangelical organization that operates out of the “C Street” house in Washington, which made his marital infidelity seem especially hypocritical and irritating to his detractors. (thanks pantslessprogressive) source

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14:41 // 3 years ago
January 26, 2011
We conclude this financial crisis was avoidable.
Report by the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission • The panel’s report, charged with investigation and review of America’s cataclysmic economic crisis, was obtained by Reuters on Tuesday. It cites human error, action, and inaction as being to blame for the collapse. The report will be widely released on Thursday. source (viafollow)
14:30 // 3 years ago