Qatar's $45 Billion Plan to Build a Brand New City for the World Cup →

The Olympics and the World Cup, two events held up as beacons of international cooperation and urban development, are increasingly limited to the realm of nations who have the power—and thus the cash—to actually afford to host them. As one Russian activist put it last year, after human rights abuses were reported amongst migrant workers at Sochi, these events are “like drugs for dictators.”

To a certain extent, whether or not these abuses continue depends on whether or not the world keeps showing up for these events. It’s easy to be outraged right now, but in the end, it all comes down to those two weeks in 2022. Ultimately, it’s the audience itself that has to decide what kinds of abuse they’re willing to stomach for a sport.  

wordpainting:

hazzaisperfection:

9 Quotes for the Ultimate Book Lover

Yes!

A previously unpublished chapter of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

The Vanilla Fudge Room is from an early draft of Roald Dahl’s most famous novel. With new illustrations by Quentin Blake.

image

The remaining eight children, together with their mothers and fathers, were ushered out into the long white corridor once again.

"I wonder how Augustus Pottle and Miranda Grope are feeling now?" Charlie Bucket asked his mother.

"Not too cocky, I shouldn’t think" Mrs Bucket answered. "Here – hold on to my hand, will you, darling. That’s right. Hold on tight and try not to let go. And don’t you go doing anything silly in here, either, you understand, or you might get sucked up into one of those dreadful pipes yourself, or something even worse maybe. Who knows?"

Little Charlie took a tighter hold of Mrs Bucket’s hand as they walked down the long corridor. Soon they came to a door on which it said:

THE VANILLA FUDGE ROOM

"Hey, this is where Augustus Pottle went to, isn’t it?" Charlie Bucket said.

"No", Mr Wonka told him. "Augustus Pottle is in Chocolate Fudge. This is Vanilla. Come inside, everybody, and take a peek."

They went into another cavernous room, and here again a really splendid sight met their eyes.

In the centre of the room there was an actual mountain, a colossal jagged mountain as high as a five-storey building, and the whole thing was made of pale-brown, creamy, vanilla fudge. All the way up the sides of the mountain, hundreds of men were working away with picks and drills, hacking great hunks of fudge out of the mountainside; and some of them, those that were high up in dangerous places, were roped together for safety.

As the huge hunks of fudge were pried loose, they went tumbling and bouncing down the mountain, and when they reached the bottom they were picked up by cranes with grab-buckets, and the cranes dumped the fudge into open waggons – into an endless moving line of waggons (rather like smallish railway waggons) which carried the stuff away to the far end of the room and then through a hole in the wall.

"It’s all fudge!" Mr Wonka said grandly.

"Can we climb up to the top?" The children shouted, jumping up and down.

"Yes, if you are careful," Mr Wonka said. "Go up on that side over there where the men aren’t working, then the big hunks won’t come tumbling down on top of you."

So the children had a wonderful time scrambling up to the top of the mountain and scrambling down again, and all the way there and back they kept picking up lumps of fudge and guzzling them.

"Now I’m going to have ride on one of those waggons," said a rather bumptious little boy called Wilbur Rice.

"So am I!" Shouted another boy called Tommy Troutbeck.

"No, please don’t do that." Mr Wonka said. "Those things are dangerous. You might get run over."

"You’d better not, Wilbur, darling," Mrs Rice (Wilbur’s mother) said.

"Don’t you do it either, Tommy," Mrs Troutbeck (Tommy’s mother) told him. "The man here says it’s dangerous."

"Nuts!" Exclaimed Tommy Troutbeck. "Nuts to you!"

"Crazy old Wonka!" shouted Wilbur Rice, and the two boys ran forward and jumped on to one of the waggons as it went by. Then they climbed up and sat right on the top of its load of fudge.

"Heigh-ho everybody!" shouted Wilbur Rice.

"First stop Chicago!" shouted Tommy Troutbeck, waving his arms.

"He’s wrong about that," Mr Willy Wonka said quietly. "The first stop is most certainly not Chicago."

"He’s quite a lad, our Wilbur", Mr Rice (Wilbur’s father) said proudly. "He’s always up to his little tricks."

"Wilbur!" shouted Mrs Rice, as the waggon went shooting across the room. "Come off there at once! Do you hear me!"

"You too Tommy!" shouted Mrs Troutbeck. "Come on, off you get! There’s no knowing where that thing’s headed for!"

"Wilbur!" Shouted Mrs Rice. "Will you get off that … that … my goodness! It’s gone through a hole in the wall!"

"Don’t say I didn’t warn them," Mr Wonka declared. "Your children are not particularly obedient, are they?"

"But where has it gone?" Both mothers cried at the same time. "What’s through that hole?"

"That hole," said Mr Wonka, "leads directly to what we call The Pounding And Cutting Room. In there, the rough fudge gets tipped out of the waggons into the mouth of a huge machine. The machine then pounds it against the floor until it is all nice and smooth and thin. After that, a whole lot of knives come down and go chop chop chop, cutting it up into neat little squares, ready for the shops."

"How dare you!" screamed Mrs Rice. "I refuse to allow our Wilbur to be cut up into neat little squares."

"That goes for Tommy, too!" cried Mrs Troutbeck. "No boy of mine is going to be put into a shop window as vanilla fudge! We’ve spent too much on his education already!"

"Quite right," said Mr Troutbeck. "We didn’t bring Tommy in here just to feed your rotten fudge machine! We brought him here for your fudge machine to feed him! You’ve got it the wrong way round a bit, haven’t you, Mr Wonka?"

"I’ll say he has!" said Mrs Troutbeck.

"Now, now," murmured Mr Willy Wonka soothingly. "Now, now, now. Calm down, everybody, please. If the four parents concerned will kindly go along with this assistant of mine here, they will be taken directly to (the) room where their boys are waiting. You see, we have a large wire strainer in there which is used specially for catching children before they fall into the machine. It always catches them. At least it always has up to now."

"I wonder," said Mrs Troutbeck.

"So do I," said Mrs Rice.

And high up on the mountainside, one of the workers lifted up his voice, and sang:

"Eight little children – such charming little chicks. But two of them said ‘Nuts to you,’ and then there were six."

"Fudge Mountain" is an unpublished chapter from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl; ©1964, 2014 by the author, printed with permission from Roald Dahl Nominee Limited.

Source: The Guardian

NASA Sets A 2018 Launch Date For The Rocket That Will Take Us To Mars    →

Please let this happen. The Apollo 11 mission was one of the human race’s crowning achievements, an event of global significance that while led by Americans, was celebrated by the world. I think Poet Archibald MacLeish’s "Riders on Earth Together, Brothers in Eternal Cold” best sums up the societal impact of space flight and the eventual moon landings:

To see the earth as it truly is, small blue and beautiful in that eternal silence where it floats, is to see ourselves as riders on the earth together, brothers on that bright loveliness in the eternal cold—brothers who know now they are truly brothers. 

The world today desperately needs another space program that can redirect our sights away from the ongoing massive geopolitical shit storms, and towards a watershed moment that provides people, regardless of borders, with a collective sense of achievement and cosmic significance. 

On a side note, if we do find even rudimentary life away from Earth, maybe all these irrational and imbecilic fundamentalists will start to get a fucking clue. Then again, they probably won’t. 

Do not go gentle into that good night →

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Dylan Thomas, 1914 - 1953

brucesterling:

*You should buy this book so that more universities will come up with weird cool projects like this.
http://www.harpercollins.com/9780062204691/hieroglyph
About the Book

Inspired by New York Times bestselling author Neal Stephenson, an anthology of stories, set in the near future, from some of today’s leading writers, thinkers, and visionaries that reignites the iconic and optimistic visions of the golden age of science fiction.
In his 2011 article “Innovation Starvation,” Neal Stephenson argued that we—the society whose earlier scientists and engineers witnessed the airplane, the automobile, nuclear energy, the computer, and space exploration—must reignite our ambitions to think boldly and do Big Stuff. He also advanced the Hieroglyph Theory which illuminates the power of science fiction to inspire the inventive imagination: “Good SF supplies a plausible, fully thought-out picture of an alternate reality in which some sort of compelling innovation has taken place.”
In 2012, Arizona State University established the Center for Science and the Imagination to bring together writers, artists, and creative thinkers with scientists, engineers, and technologists to cultivate and expand on “moon shot ideas” that inspire the imagination and catalyze real-world innovations.
Now comes this remarkable anthology uniting twenty of today’s leading thinkers, writers, and visionaries—among them Cory Doctorow, Gregory Benford, Elizabeth Bear, Bruce Sterling, and Neal Stephenson—to contribute works of “techno-optimism” that challenge us to dream and do Big Stuff. Engaging, mind-bending, provocative, and imaginative, Hieroglyph offers a forward-thinking approach to the intersection of art and technology that has the power to change our world. 

brucesterling:

*You should buy this book so that more universities will come up with weird cool projects like this.

http://www.harpercollins.com/9780062204691/hieroglyph

About the Book

Inspired by New York Times bestselling author Neal Stephenson, an anthology of stories, set in the near future, from some of today’s leading writers, thinkers, and visionaries that reignites the iconic and optimistic visions of the golden age of science fiction.

In his 2011 article “Innovation Starvation,” Neal Stephenson argued that we—the society whose earlier scientists and engineers witnessed the airplane, the automobile, nuclear energy, the computer, and space exploration—must reignite our ambitions to think boldly and do Big Stuff. He also advanced the Hieroglyph Theory which illuminates the power of science fiction to inspire the inventive imagination: “Good SF supplies a plausible, fully thought-out picture of an alternate reality in which some sort of compelling innovation has taken place.”

In 2012, Arizona State University established the Center for Science and the Imagination to bring together writers, artists, and creative thinkers with scientists, engineers, and technologists to cultivate and expand on “moon shot ideas” that inspire the imagination and catalyze real-world innovations.

Now comes this remarkable anthology uniting twenty of today’s leading thinkers, writers, and visionaries—among them Cory Doctorow, Gregory Benford, Elizabeth Bear, Bruce Sterling, and Neal Stephenson—to contribute works of “techno-optimism” that challenge us to dream and do Big Stuff. Engaging, mind-bending, provocative, and imaginative, Hieroglyph offers a forward-thinking approach to the intersection of art and technology that has the power to change our world. 

(via emergentfutures)

This is too awesome. My kids will never know the true purpose of WASD now. 

Action Comics #1 Sells for $3.2 Million - SuperHeroHype →

I’m not saying money is a good measure of everything, but here at least it shows how much Superman as a cultural icon is worth.

(*_*) <3

http://thehigherlearning.com/2014/07/31/the-pope-just-released-a-list-of-10-tips-for-becoming-a-happier-person-and-they-are-spot-on/ →

Top N lists are always full of questionable content, but when it contains secular advice free of even a smidge of religious dogma, from the leader of the largest religious group in the world, I think it deserves special mention.

On a side note, this guy has to be the most progressive Pope ever. I wonder if all the other Popes are looking down from heaven and cursing the Cardinals for having elected him. Can you even curse in heaven? So many questions o_O

"Please, don’t worry so much. Because in the end, none of us have very long on this Earth. Life is fleeting. And if you’re ever distressed, cast your eyes to the summer sky when the stars are strung across the velvety night. And when a shooting star streaks through the blackness, turning night into day… make a wish and think of me. Make your life spectacular. I know I did."

cute-overload:

Bow Ties Are Totally In Right Nowhttp://cute-overload.tumblr.com

cute-overload:

Bow Ties Are Totally In Right Now
http://cute-overload.tumblr.com