1. AuthaGraph World Map Corrects Perceptions
No map is perfect but those behind AuthaGraph have offered an alternative that addresses size perception. By laying the spherical world out on 96 triangles, which are then transferred to a triangular pyramid, they have been able to depict continents (and countries) in more accurate sizes with regard to one another. When unfolded, this pyramid can either lay flat in rectangular form or be folded into a globe, with both being accurate. It’s not the best navigational tool, but that’s not the point—this is an educational implement.
2. Product Placement and Brand Mentions in Top 20 Tracks
A whopping 212 different brands have been mentioned throughout all the songs that reached top 20 status in the last three years, according to Bloomberg pop culture reporter Kim Bhasin and data journalist Lance Lambert. Their study analyzed the tracks, searching for brand references, whether by proper name or through slang references. Rolls-Royce received the most mentions (helped along the way by Rolls-Royce owners Drake, DJ Khaled and French Montana), but eight of the top 10 brands overall were cars. Remarkably, everything from Rolaids to Adobe Photoshop and Grey Poupon received shout-outs. Head over to Bloomberg for all the results.
3. Wired’s Very Accurate Tech Anxiety Matrix
Ranging from the frivolous and least likely to substantiated worries, Wired magazine has assembled a chart of our biggest tech fears and anxieties. Aside from being a beautiful piece of data visualization, the graph addresses everything from addiction to phishing and puts it all into context. Maybe the tech bubble will burst again. Perhaps a robot will take your job. Get ready for more cyber-attacks but don’t ever expect Trump to stop tweeting. See the whole matrix over at Wired to feel… connected to others.
4. Furniture Shaped Like Fast Food
For the Italian brand Seletti’s upholstered furniture debut they’ve once again partnered with the whimsical design firm Studio Job and the result is certainly eye-catching (and arguably mouth-watering). This new pop culture-saturated “UN_LIMITED EDITIONS” line draws inspiration from fast food. In a nod to Americana, there’s a sofa in the form of a hot dog bun, complete with a comfortable upholstered sausage inside. There’s also a hamburger chair, with a pickled cucumber armrest and tomato slice as a back cushion. Not for everyone but certainly fun, the pieces are explored further over at designboom.
5. Recycle Your Eclipse Glasses
After the total solar eclipse in the United States, many who took proper precaution find themselves with flimsy cardboard eclipse sunglasses. Thankfully, these glasses don’t need to occupy table space or end up in the trash. Astronomers Without Borders is soon to announce a program where they’ll be redistribute these glasses to schools in Asia and South America for the solar eclipse in 2019. “This is an opportunity for schools to have a first-hand science experience that they might not otherwise have” Mike Simmons, the president of Astronomers Without Borders, explains to Gizmodo. Anyone looking to recycle their glasses can send them to Astronomers Without Borders’ corporate sponsor, Explore Scientific, at 621 Madison Street, Springdale, Arkansas.
6. Ettore Sottsass Sketched His Autobiography
Prolific and significant, architect and designer Ettore Sottsass sketched an autobiography back in 1993. Now published in a new edition of Phaidon’s “Ettore Sottsass,” these sketches offer a fascinating peep inside the brain of a master. They’re incredibly charming and accompanied by poetic notes of interest. (An especially interesting one: as a child, he enjoyed designing cemeteries.) Proving Sottsass was quite a sensitive soul, this illustrated autobiography makes for quite the exploration. Read and see more at FastCo.
7. NASA’s Night Photography Tracks Cracking Glaciers
Following the Larsen C ice shelf’s behavior quite closely, since one of the largest icebergs in history broke off in July, scientists came across a problem: it’s winter in Antartica and therefore it’s entirely dark. To solve the issue, NASA scientists have added a special instrument to a satellite in order to photograph and track the ice shelf. Instead of using regular light like normal cameras, this one uses a Thermal Infrared Sensor—capturing images “by measuring the differences in temperature between the water and the ice.” Find out more at National Geographic.
8. Farewell Jerry Lewis
The prolific, much-adored (and somewhat disdained) comedian and filmmaker Jerry Lewis has died aged 91 at his home in Las Vegas. Lewis performed in Manhattan nightclubs as a contrasting character to his stage-mate Dean Martin—and the duo rose to fame fast. From acting on Broadway and in films (perhaps most famously, “The Nutty Professor”), producing and writing his own movies, and penning multiple autobiographies, Lewis tried his hand at many mediums. But, as the NY Times says, “His ultimate object of contemplation was his own contradictory self, and he turned his obsession with fragmentation, discontinuity and the limits of language into a spectacle that enchanted children, disturbed adults and fascinated postmodernist critics.” Read his full, fascinating obituary at the Times.