Please Don’t Use This Site on This Site

A yet-to-be-released browser plugin created by MIT researcher and fellow east PA-er Dan Schultz promises to do for the web what Fox News will never do for its on-air hosts.

Pants on fire fox?

From NPR:

CORNISH: Of course, the joke about beer goggles is they make people or potential dates look more attractive then they really are. Schultz’s Truth Goggles are meant to do the opposite. With this software, your potential [presidential] candidate might not look so hot anymore, once the program has searched and flagged their statements as dubious. Then it would link you to the research of fact-checking websites like PolitiFact.

SCHULTZ: The inspiration behind this project goes back to my freshman year, when I took a course about “The War of the Worlds” broadcast that happened in – I think it was 1938.

SCHULTZ: I would like to help keep people from believing that aliens are invading the planet. I want to use this tool to trigger their critical abilities, to get them to think a little bit harder about what they are seeing.

Long/ Live/ the sound of extinct objects

Phones today beep and buzz. MP3s don’t scratch. Noises that were once familiar, such as the clacking of manual typewriter keys or the ding of the gas station driveway bell, have all but vanished. Kara Kovalchik of shares these and other sounds your kids have probably never heard.

Worth a listen just for the sound of a photograph being dispensed from a Polaroid camera, or the click of the dial on a rotary phone.

From A Broken Record, and Other Sounds Kids Don’t Know {talk of the nation} and 11 sounds your kids have probably never heard {mental floss}.

Super Betterer

I wrote about the new video game designed to help people recover from things, Super Better, when it was first discussed on On the Media two months ago. Game designer Jane McGonigal was back on this week, and she revealed a code that grants access to the beta version of the game. (Go to the SuperBetter site, and enter sochofriend where it asks, “have a key to enter?”).

It’s a fantastic concept, one that will help tons of people. It was designed with brain trauma victims in mind, but can easily translate to other types of afflictions.

First, you tell SuperBetter what ails you:


It’s essentially an interactive web app that helps the user focus on getting better, picture what that improved state would look like, and enlists the support of friends and family. These are all concepts supported by science, and the video game-esque presentation hooks the user and encourages them to stick with it.

I look forward to seeing the final release!


I’m not shy about my love for the weekly radio show Left, Right & Center. It’s the Gilligan’s Island of talk radio — that is — there’s a token member of each level of society or in this case, each political persuasion (sort of). There’s the optimistic, if not denialistic (is that a word?) Tom Hanks-look-alike from the political center, Matt Miller. Then there’s your affable, conservative Brit — a combination that never fully sets in the first time you hear it. Then there’s the on-again off-again Arianna Huffington, from the “independent progressive blogosphere,” whatever that means.

Last but not least is Robert Scheer, the outspoken, banks-must-die advocate for the left. Despite the fact that three of those four could be considered on the left (it is California after all…), I appreciate the intellectual rigor present in their conversations.

Then again, maybe the real reason I like the show is the way the other three seem to set it up so perfectly for Scheer in almost every episode. His rant from last weeks’ show is a good example of any of what I’m talking about, and makes such an awesome point about the hypocrisy coming from the media/right/left about the Occupy movement.

Scheer, wrapping up a soliloquy about the police presence in L.A. as Occupiers set up camp near Bank of America, next to the headquarters of Wells Fargo:

I think that the Constitutional guarantee of the right of people to assemble and demand a redress of grievances — if you can’t do that over this kind of issue, it makes the Constitution hollow, it mocks it. And for our government to have celebrated demonstrations that are certainly more disorderly than these, more of an inconvenience to people, in places like Cairo, in China… we said “no, so what if they disrupt traffic in these places, they have the right to assemble,” and now here people are talking about keeping the sidewalks clean, let’s not inconvenience people, I think it’s nonsense.

Nonsense indeed. From last weeks’ episode, Occupied by Occupy {kcrw}.