Monday, May 23

US Marshals Invite You To Dig Through The Unabomber's Closet

by Jason Toon


Now the most feared hoodie and sunglasses of the 1990s can be yours - if you've got tens of thousands of dollars to spend. The U.S. Marshals service is currently conducting an online auction of the personal effects of Ted "Unabomber" Kaczynski, open through June 2, with the proceeds to benefits the victims of Kaczynski's attacks.

The list of Unabombabilia on the block ranges from his mental health records (current top bid: $725) to his typewriter ($11,100), from a pile of birth certificates and IDs ($3,025) to a "long black knife" ($3,060). The highest price right now, of course, is fetched by the ensemble that we all saw in that police sketch ($20,025). For a better look at the stuff, consult the Unabomber auction Flickr gallery. If you're in the market for a grisly piece of history and would like to help out the victims of an awful crime spree, you've got until June 2 to place your bids.

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Wednesday, May 18

You Can Tell He's Lying By The Way His Cat Ears Twitch

by Jason Hinklin-Lauderdale

It's late. You're tired. Your girlfriend sits alone on the couch, her eyes red and puffy from crying most of the night. In a quiet voice, she says. "I don't know what else to tell you. Steve and I, we're just friends. The same goes for Teddy the office mail clerk and Harry from my car pool. And I don't even that delivery guy from the Chinese food place's name. Why would I cheat on you with someone whose name I don't even know and never remembers to bring us extra hoisin sauce with our order?"

You want to believe her. Really, you do. She's saying all the right things. Her body language is clearly letting you know that she's telling you the truth. But it's just not enough, is it? And now, before you make the hardest decision of your relationship, you find yourself wishing that your girlfriend had brainwave-sensitive cat ears on her head that might tip you off as to what she's truly feeling.

 

 

Touted as a new "communication tool" that augments the human body's ability to convey emotion, Neurowear's Necomimi is a set of mechanical cat ears that respond to your brainwaves. Concentrate and they perk up. Relax and they fall. I think. Do both, which is apparently something professional sports players are really good at when they aren't taking steroids or organizing dog fights, and they'll twitch.

And that's great and all, but I'm not sure twitching fake plushy cat ears are capable of telling me anything other than that the person wearing them is into Anime or Manga. Maybe that's just me, though. I mean, just look at all the fun these folks are having.

 

 

I wonder how popular these will be when they're released later this year. After all, it might be good for us to get in on the ground floor of the impending "animal ears as communication device" thing while we can. Woot-branded brainwave-sucking monkey ears, here we come.

 

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Tuesday, May 17

Your House is on Fire! What do you Save?

by Randall Cleveland

It's a game nearly as old as humanity, if you can call envisioning one of the most horrific disasters a person can experience a game. Someone posits the hypothetical situation: "You wake up. Your house is on fire. Your family's safe, but you only have time to save one thing. What is it?" And then you're supposed to uncomfortably stammer while you mentally rifle through your life deciding which of your accomplishments is least deserving to burn to cinders. Inevitably you will make the wrong decision. If you say your treasured diary with all your thoughts and experiences, the asker will say, "What? Not your family photos?!" If you say the family photos, they'll say something like, "Not your lucky guitar? The one you first serenaded your wife with?" Now a web site called The Burning House is taking the game and eliminating the judgmental question asker, only to replace him with the entire internet...

 

Screen shot 2011-05-17 at 10.51.05 AM

 

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Wednesday, May 11

New Batman Scene LEAKED: And Woot Has the Scoop!

by Randall Cleveland

Christopher Nolan's latest Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises, has been a regular blip on internet comic geek and film nerd radars as it goes through casting and hiring stages. People have been debating which actors are right for which roles, which comic story the film should tackle, and who is actually more excited for the third installment to arrive in theatres. Well the joke's on them, because it turns out the third Batman flick is already well into production.

We don't normally dabble in leaks of any kind, but when an anonymous Wooter sends you a link and confirms personally that it's "probably legit," that's just a scoop too good to pass up...

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Tuesday, May 03

Internet Insanity!: Edward Muscare

by Randall Cleveland

Anyone who's ever used the internet in their life has gotten a warning at some point: "Careful," paranoid worrywarts and reasonable folks alike will warn you, "there are some CRAZY people on the internet." This feature looks at some of those crazy people, but not the ones you have to worry about stealing your identity and chopping you up. These are just the people you probably wouldn't want to get stuck talking to at a party (Woot makes no claim as to the risk of being chopped up by anyone in this column, including the author). In this installment we'll take a look at a guy even Tim Burton would dismiss as too creepy: edarem.

 

 

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Monday, May 02

The World We Live In

by Scott Lydon

Plenty of people hop on Twitter to talk about what they think is interesting. Usually, it's only of interest to them, or maybe a few select friends. And then there's Sohaib Athar. He's the guy who... well...

surprise

 

That's right, by virtue of being a night owl, Sohaib was an accidental eyewitness to the capture of Osama Bin Laden. Over at Techcrunch, they've got all his honest, well-meaning tweets on display ("Go away, helicopter, before I take out my giant swatter"), allowing you to see history in progress 140 characters at a time. Head over, take a look, and if your boss catches you reading… well, he or she will probably be interested too. It's the kind of day to cut each other a little slack, right?

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Thursday, April 28

For The Love Of The (Video) Game

by Jason Hinklin-Lauderdale

I understand why online gaming is so popular. Really, I do. I mean, who doesn't love rage-quitting? And is there anything more magical than having a twelve-year old girl hurl racial slurs at you? Add that to the exquisite joy that comes with never having to have any sort of contact with another human being, and it's a wonder video arcades lasted as long as they did! I mean, all that pesky social interaction and face-to-face competition? Earning the respect of one's peers? Exhibiting patience while you wait to play your favorite game? Oh, and let's not forget all that exhausting standing. What an awful experience it all must have been.

You really have to wonder why independent filmmaker Kurt Vincent wants to put together a documentary celebrating one of the greatest arcades to ever exist, Chinatown Fair, which closed its doors for good a few months ago. He's even asking for donations to help him finish the project through Kickstarter, as you can see from the video below. Viewer, beware: Not only will you see shocking scenes of people enjoying being around one another while they play video games, the language gets a little NSFW in the final two minutes.

 

 

In all seriousness, I'm pretty excited about this project. It's awesome to see people so interested in gaming's social history, and I hope his film gets the backers it needs. If you'd like more information, check out his Kickstarter page or follow his blog on Tumblr.

 

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Monday, April 25

Buy The Ticket, Take The Final Ride

by Jason Hinklin-Lauderdale

The Euthanasia Coaster is like something out of an old B-grade horror film. The plot almost writes itself: Five kids on Spring/Summer break, their vehicle breaks down, "Oh look, a carnival! Maybe someone there can help us!", demon carnies, evil ringmaster, a bunch of running and death in various carnival mainstays, all leading up to an explosive and fiery climax high a top the title's namesake. Heck, it might even be a good B-movie if it already wasn't a horrific design project.

 

 

Designed by a PhD candidate at the Royal College of Art in London, it very literally kills with thrills in an effort to make the last ride you would ever stand in line for "pleasing, elegant and meaningful." I, for one, have never really equated those words with roller coasters ever, but maybe that's just me. And while there's no chance someone would actually be insane enough to build the thing, the plans themselves are probably enough to give your most coaster-phobic pal nightmares for a night or two.

[via DVICE]

 

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Friday, April 22

One Time Zone Ahead Of Last Call

by Scott Lydon

Someone gets to do "the full pat-down" then someone owes you a drink. That's supposed to be the rules, right? You at least expect them to take an interest in you. But when's the last time a TSA agent complimented your outfit, or asked for your phone number, or even said they hoped to see you again? These days, checkpoints leave you feeling like you just walked through a 70s swinger's club. It's heartbreaking. What ever happened to romance?

If you're the sort of person who needs a stiff drink after Security, check out cocktail blog Cocktailians.com. My buddy Sam has developed a small flight-legal ingredient kit and a system to pick up the rest as you go. Sugar from the coffee bar, muddler from Panda Express, a coffee cup for the shaker: suddenly, you're Monte Carlo in the sky. Take a look and see for yourself in this short video...

 

 

He's got the full list on his site if you're looking to make some sky-drinks for yourself. Sadly, there's probably an FAA rule which prevents you from selling the drinks to other passengers, but maybe you could set out a tip jar to recoup the cost of your ticket. If nothing else, you'll impress the stewardesses.

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Thursday, April 21

Waste Time Watching A Timepiece Be Made

by Jason Hinklin-Lauderdale

Seems kind of silly to be made to write up a blog post on the very brink of Skynet destroying human civilization and everything, but whatever. Skynet doesn't sign my checks, so I guess I need to come up with something.

Oh! How about a three-minute video of people making an hourglass? That certainly is "timely", huh? Heh heh. Heh. Ugh.

 

 

Well it's a neat little video, anyway. Now then, if anyone else needs me I'll be stocking up my great-grandpa's fallout shelter. Sure, this may all turn out to be entirely fictional, but it's better to be safe than sorry, you know?

[via kottke]

 

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