1. Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture
Though the museum was originally proposed a century ago, Washington DC’s Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture finally opened its doors this past weekend. Telling important stories about black people, issues and culture, the museum has some 36,000 artifacts on display. We’re most excited about items that represent some of the first black astronauts—for example, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden donated his flight suit and other pieces, just another facet that’s helping to tell a fuller, more accurate and inclusive version of America’s history. Learn more on their website or plan a visit.
2. Hangover-Free Alcohol
Created by Professor David Nutt, a synthetic alcohol called ‘alcosynth’ might be the solution to your hangovers. The professor and former government drugs advisor says alcosynth “mimics the positive effects of alcohol but doesn’t cause a dry mouth, nausea and a throbbing head.” He hopes that regular booze will be fazed out and replaced by his magic drink by 2050. Interestingly, the effects would max out at five or so drinks, meaning (in theory) people would never feel “too” drunk. While that is certainly good news for health and safety, it will be interesting to see if that really is what all drinkers want. Read more at The Independent.
3. NASA’s Free Retro Mars Posters
NASA has taken a retro approach to promotion for its Journey to Mars program, and the results are enough to encourage you to sign up. Half recruitment posters, half travel advertising, the designs have an endearing, nostalgic vibe. Between NASA and Elon Musk, heading to Mars—once again—is at the forefront of our collective consciousness. You can download them all at mars.nasa.gov.
4. Battling for the Position of Arbiter of Style
Bloggers have changed the fashion industry, gaining influence and altering the way style filters down through consumers. A thoughtful new piece from Quartz addresses recent slights from both fashion industry editors and the luxury retailer Neiman Marcus regarding the importance—or, in their opinion, negative impact—of opening the doors of fashion to those without a long-standing platform. On one end, the statements reflect the continued struggle for influence in the sphere while the other end makes note of department stores inability to keep up with the instantaneous nature of bloggers. Either way, it looks like the older institutions must continue to adapt because likes, regrams and shares seem to stipulate a more democratic future.
5. Solo Radio Matches Music to Your Mood
After reading your facial expressions, Solo Radio chooses music to play to match your mood. The device takes a photo of your face and then sends it to Microsoft, whose program analyzes it. Next, “Solo translates this information into a valence rating, and uses Spotify to play a track with corresponding valence ratings, therefore matching your mood.” The endearing device even changes its own expression to match yours—since misery loves company. Read more at It’s Nice That.
6. Unlike Trump’s Wall, Tecate Wants One Made of Beer
In time for the first debate and 41 days until the election, Tecate released a clever TV spot that’s funny, but political. The commercial proposes a wall between Mexico and the United States, but unlike Trump’s proposed wall, this one would encourage bringing people together for a beer. It was appropriately shot outside Tecate, Mexico—a boarder town; and in the true spirit of togetherness, the Mexican brand hired US agency Saatchi & Saatchi. While being clever advertising, it’s also a thoughtful take and an important one in this political climate. Read more on AdWeek.
7. Snapchat’s Video-Enabled Sunglasses
While Google Glass didn’t take off, Snapchat evidently thinks there’s still something in tech specs as they have announced their video-enabled sunglasses: Spectacles. Created to upload video to the “memories” section of Snapchat directly, the sunglasses are Bluetooth- and WiFi-enabled and “capture the human perspective with a 115 degree field of view.” The glasses will be available in three colorways. Read more at the Snap blog.
8. HighSnobiety’s Gin Guide
“Gin” is translated from the Dutch “jenever” and sometimes takes a backseat to whisky when it comes to education and tasting. But HighSnobiety is breaking it all down for readers—from defining the spirit, to essential ingredients and elements, distilling, and all the different types. For rookies, it’s a great lesson and for experts, it’s a good way to brush up and maybe find some new brands to try. Read more at HighSnobiety.