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Odds and ends

Hoo boy! Did you see this over at Michelle‘s? The (government funded) Smithsonian Institute was so gosh-darned excited by Obama’s challenge to out-innovate the Chinese (remember him wittering on about a “Sputnik moment“?), they’ve launched a new blog called the Department of Innovation. This is the logo.


Ahem. Beg pardon. Three gears configured thusly are incapable of turning. If the top gear is going clockwise, it’ll turn the gear on the right counter-clockwise, and the gear bottom left will be pulled in both directions at once. Total gridlock. Perfect.

The blog post gets about ten comments in before people start ragging on them about it.

As an illustrator who used to work for an engineering company, I sympathize. I did retarded shit like this all the time. In fact, I may have made this exact mistake at some point.

But wouldn’t you think someone at the SMITHSONIAN FREAKING INSTITUTE would pick up on it before it escaped into the wild?

Next up, a modern explanation for the behavior of Peter the Wild Man. He was an 18th Century feral child, found naked in a forest in Germany in 1725 and brought to London by George I as a sort of a pet.

Actually, “modern explanations” bore me stiff — especially when they’re based on a close examination of not very skillful portraiture — but I enjoyed reading about Peter. Whatever was wrong with the poor bastard.

I especially liked the non-sequitur at the end: “His very existence exposed the shallow artifice of Georgian society as a bit of a sham.”

Um, what?

And finally, Christopher Taylor‘s second book, Old Habits, is out in a print-on-demand edition. I haven’t read it. I have utterly sworn off paper as a means of transporting information. But if you follow Christopher’s excellent blog, you know dude can write.

Have a good weekend, everyone!

August 12, 2011 — 9:09 pm
Comments: 57