pen_and_sword

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Reminder: You Can Totally Dodge The Blue Shell In Mario Kart

Heck, thanks to the new video editor in <i>Mario Kart 8,</i> you can even dodge blue shells with extreme style now.<p>See this epic moment captured by Thomas …

Just how fast is Mario, and how far does he run in Super Mario Bros.?

Running enthusiasts, next time you complete a 5K pat yourself on the back and say to yourself, "I just finished <i>Super Mario Bros.</i>"<p>Extrapolating the distance of each level, assuming Mario's small size and his stride are those of an average man, Nick Greene of Mental Floss calculated that Mario runs …

Writing in Games: It’s Much More Than Narrative

Why some of the best writing has nothing to do with character or story.<p><b>Warning: This feature contains a minor spoiler for The Last of Us: Left Behind.</b><p>…

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor - Q & A with Michael de Plater

One of the most interesting games up for release before the end of this calendar year is Lord of the Rings-tinged action-adventure, Middle-earth: …

Four top family-friendly video games coming this fall

This time of year, video game companies reveal their lineups for the fall releases at a conference called E3. While most of the games grabbing the …

Roadtrip Mixtape: Location-Based Playlists for Your Journey

Just this week Spotify revealed it was expanding its Web API, with data from its recent acquisition of The Echo Nest taking a leading role. With that in mind, an interesting little nugget has come to fruition courtesy of music technologist Paul Lamere and the tight-integration between the …

Birds in their natural habitat

Today is caturday once again, and if you're like me, you are busy -- perhaps a bit overwhelmed -- with all the things you have committed to finishing before going on holiday.<p>I recently stumbled across this lovely video by a talented filmmaker that you must see. This video documentary may provide …

Stem-cell advances may quell ethics debate

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Robert Waddell says he's glad the stem cells that healed him came from "a guy who was 50 years old" and not a human embryo.<p>As a Catholic, Waddell opposes the destruction of embryos and didn't want to rely on embryonic stem cells to cure his kidney disease. But he avoided this …

Are Fish As Intelligent As Crows, Chimps... Or People?

The science shows that fish use tools, feel pain, have long memories, and deserve better treatment from us.<p>Whether they're caught in the wild or raised in captivity, fish are a major food souce worldwide. Nearly 5 billion people worldwide got 15 percent of the animal protein in their diets from …

Why do earphone cords always get tangled? Physics

Our picks of the week from around the web, including the science behind an everyday knotty problem, the man who sequenced his baby’s genome before birth and why the internet is a psychology experiment.<p>The pivot<br>Scott Adams | Dilbert | 16 June 2014<br>Notes on start-up culture in Silicon Valley. “The …

How Did The Meter Get Its Length?

The U.S. doesn't routinely use the metric system. The U.S. government definition of a foot is 0.3048 meters. But if the length of a foot is based on the meter, what's the length of the meter based on?<p>Transcript<p>STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:<p>Three countries in the world do not routinely use the metric system …

True Facts About The Fruit Bat

This amusing video shares a few facts about the amazing megabats – the largest flying mammals alive in the world today<p>Once again, it's caturday, so let's watch some animals doing stuff!<p>Today's animals are megachiropterans, or "big winged" bats – more commonly known as megabats or fruit bats. Unlike …

Drug cocktail might help diabetics make insulin - Futurity

Combining two different medications might help patients with Type 1 diabetes at least partially regain the ability to produce their own insulin.

Scientists Spy 'Magic Island' On Titan, Saturn's Strangest Moon

As if Titan, the Saturnian moon with mountains, dunes, rivers and lakes made of flammable hydrocarbons, wasn’t weird enough, now researchers have spotted an “island” in the middle of its second-largest lake that seems to appear and disappear.<p>Rather than an island of magic or any other sort, the …

7 Lost Household Arts You Should Revive

Cleaning

Whedon and Abrams: Happy Birthday to Pop Culture's Lead Designers

This week is bookended by the birthdays of the two most influential pop culture titans working today: Joss Whedon turns fifty today (Monday, June …

5 Applications For Graphene, The 'Wonder Material,' That Could Change The Way We Live

Graphene, the pure carbon material that's just one atom thick and nearly transparent when laid out in sheets, manages to be roughly 200 times stronger than steel, even though it's 60,000 times thinner than Saran Wrap.<p>Graphene is also an excellent conductor of energy, can be synthesized from unique …

Check out the best art GIFs of 2014

The creators of the Giphoscope -- the hand-cranked, real-world GIF machine -- have set about making a real name for themselves in the world of art. Marco Calabrese and Alessandro Scali have just hosted their very first ever annual Giphoscope Award, created to honour the very best of animated GIF …

Art

27 Tips for Mastering Anything

This story originally appeared on Business Insider<p>What does it take to become a master at your craft? Is genius innate, or can it be learned?<p>In his book, "<i>Mastery</i>," Robert Greene draws from the latest research, interviews modern masters, and examines the lives of former greats like Albert Einstein, …

A Little Girl Wrote Google A Letter Asking To Give Her Dad A Day Off, And Google Responded

Here's some advice on how to get some time off from work: Have your daughter send a really cute letter to your employer, asking them to give you a day off.<p>Bonus points if the letter is written in crayon.<p>One little girl decided to give her dad a hand. She wrote his employer, which happens to be …