Invisibility cloak, 400 freestyle relay, Homestar Ruiner

Monday, August 11, 2008

My invisibility cloak must have malfunctioned. Invisibility cloaks are becoming reality, or at least progress is still being made. Scientists have created new metamaterials that can bend light the wrong way. CNN reports: “Researchers have demonstrated for the first time they were able to cloak three-dimensional objects using artificially engineered materials that redirect light around the objects.” Here are two articles: “Scientists say they’re closer to invisibility material” (CNN) and “Invisibility cloak one step closer, scientists say” (Scientific American). Reminds me of optical-camouflage technology.

If you didn’t see it, be sure to check out the Americans’ amazing gold-medal comeback performance in the men’s 4×100 freestyle relay: “Lezak runs down French to win relay gold for U.S.” This means that Michael Phelps’ quest for eight gold medals at one Olympics is still alive. ESPN has provided some classic sports achievements to compare to the 400 relay: “Dramatic relay latest among fantastic Olympic, sports finishes.”

The first episode of Strong Bad’s Cool Game for Attractive People is out. It’s titled “Homestar Ruiner.”

So, if celebrity deaths come in threes . . . (OK, wait, put your critical thinking abilities on hold and let’s pretend we aren’t forming patterns from random data) . . . did Estelle Getty from “Golden Girls” begin the trilogy of deaths that Bernie Mac and Isaac “Chef” Hayes just finished? Or was Estelle part of an earlier series, maybe the one that included TV journalist Tim Russert? Should we be waiting for a third? And does this game require all recently deceased individuals in the series to have something in common, such as profession or ethnicity or geographic location, in order to complete the series? Can I get a ruling?

Speaking of rulings, The Onion reports: “Supreme Court Rules Death Penalty Is ‘Totally Badass’” and will continue to rule on the basis of awesomeness rather than constitutionality.

In music-related news: The Year Zero Case Study is a great overview of the alternate reality game based on the Nine Inch Nails concept album of the same name. Radiohead and aniBoom have chosen four grand winners in the In Rainbows Animated Music Video Contest. And people keep making cool stuff with the “House of Cards” 3D animation data that Radiohead released last month, such as a time-lapse LEGO bricks interpretation of the song.

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