March 29, 2018 How Dark Patterns Trick You Online In graphic and web design, a dark pattern is "a user interface that has been carefully crafted to trick users into doing things, such as buying insurance with their purchase or signing up for recurring bills." The neologism dark pattern was coined by Harry Brignull in August 2010 with the registration of darkpatterns.org, a "pattern library with the specific goal of naming and shaming deceptive user interfaces.
March 28, 2018 Boris Johnson told off by House of Commons Speaker John Bercow, the Speaker of the House of Commons, tells off the foreign secretary for using 'inappropriate and sexist' language. Boris Johnson referred to the shadow foreign secretary as Lady Nugee. Emily Thornberry is married to Sir Christopher Nugee but goes by her maiden name. Bercow said it was sexist to address people by the titles of their spouses rather than their actual names.
March 27, 2018 A Robotic Fish Swims in the Ocean During test dives in the Rainbow Reef in Fiji, SoFi swam at depths of more than 50 feet for up to 40 minutes at once, nimbly handling currents and taking high-resolution photos and videos using (what else?) a fisheye lens. Using its undulating tail and a unique ability to control its own buoyancy, SoFi can swim in a straight line, turn, or dive up or down. The team also used a waterproofed Super Nintendo controller and developed a custom acoustic communications system that enabled them to change SoFi’s speed and have it make specific moves and turns.
March 20, 2018 'Holy Sh*t, We’re in a Cult!' How do well-meaning, intelligent people end up in a cult? EnlightenNext was an organization, founded by self-styled guru Andrew Cohen, that aimed to facilitate spiritual awakening. Cohen’s most devoted students meditated for hours—at times, months—on end, were often celibate, and lived together. However, what started as an idealistic venture quickly turned into a complicated, sinister world.
March 12, 2018 Why European Clocks are Running Slow, and British Clocks Aren't Many people sent Tom Scot this story: it covers his favourite topics of power grids and temporal anomalies. But when the mainstream press have already covered it, how could he add something more? The answer: by adding another pet topic, Unnecessary British Patriotism. And a teasmade.
March 5, 2018 The Moiré Effect Lights That Guide Ships Home Tom Scott had never heard of moiré effect beacons until he got an email asking him about them. It seemed like a really clever idea - but it was really hard to research. Or at least it was, until he stumbled upon one magic phrase that revealed its history.
March 2, 2018 The Story of “Cool” It’s hep, it’s groovy, it’s outta sight. It’s the word “cool.” Unlike those other words, it doesn’t sound dated at all. Slang hardly ever manages that trick. How did “cool” stay cool?
March 1, 2018 Why Truly Sociable People Hate Parties Our age has a high esteem for parties. Yet some of us have a particular fear of them - which we're made to feel very bad about, as if this was a sure sign of being an anti-social and unfriendly person. Far from it. As this film argues, truly sociable people tend to hate parties a lot.