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A 100-Year-Old Row Home is Dripping With Charm — House Tour

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Name: Stephen and Amy Saxton and their dog Miko
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Size: 1,000 square feet
Years Lived In: 3.5 years, owned

After living in Philadelphia for over six years, Stephen and Amy bought their first home together in the city's Fishtown neighborhood in 2013. Fishtown, a classic working-class neighborhood in Philadelphia, is named for its history in the shad fishing industry. It is home to many restaurants, cafes, and breweries, including the notable Philadelphia Brewing Company and Stephen Starr's beer garden, Frankford Hall. It's the perfect neighborhood if you long for the small town feel in a big city.

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hansolosays
36 days ago
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Norfolk, Virginia
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Papua New Guinea looks to ban Facebook for a month and considers launching a replacement

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Papua New Guinea could ban access to Facebook for a month, time that officials say would provide an opportunity to study its effects on the population, according to a local news report.

“The time will allow information to be collected to identify users that hide behind fake accounts, users that upload pornographic images, users that post false and misleading information on Facebook to be filtered and removed,” Communications Minister Sam Basil told the Post-Courier. “This will allow genuine people with real identities to use the social network responsibly.”

The Australian Broadcasting Corporation reports that the controversial plan is only one idea under consideration for the social media platform, but it’s already raising questions about government censorship.

Basil told the Post-Courier that the government was looking to comply with legislation passed last year and was also considering the prospect of “a new social network site” built for Papua New Guinea citizens.

The country of about 8 million people would not be the first, or the most populous, to shut down Facebook. Government estimates reported by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation place Facebook users at between 600,000 and 700,000 people in the nation.

The company is already banned from operating in some countries, including China and North Korea, and there have been intermittent shutdowns in others. The service was banned in Sri Lanka for about a week earlier this year after allegations that the company’s tools were being used to spread violence.

Facebook continues to face questions about how it handles user data, following revelations from the Cambridge Analytica scandal.

Neither Facebook nor Basil’s office immediately responded to a request for comment.

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hansolosays
82 days ago
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This would be awesome!
Norfolk, Virginia
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2 public comments
MotherHydra
81 days ago
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After watching the saccharine mea culpa video ad facebook released to respond to their metric shit ton of bad press, all I have to say is: everyone should do this.
Space City, USA
sirshannon
81 days ago
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We should all be so bold.

Visualizing the Death Star's Practical Construction

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It's that time of the year when nerds start overanalyzing the latest "Star Wars" movie. But designer Isaac Botkin recently went back to the previous film, "Rogue One," and asked himself a practical question: From a structural standpoint, how would one construct a Death Star? I.e., in what sequence would which components come together in order to form the finished sphere?

Because I lack imagination, I always thought you'd build it like a house, where you get the framing lumber up first in its totality, then attach the cladding. But as we saw in "Return of the Jedi," that's not how the Empire's contractor decided to do it:

In any case, here's Botkin's take on how you'd put the thing together:

Writes Botkin:

This is a personal project that I worked on with my brother. I enjoyed watching a little bit of Death Star assembly in Rogue One, but I wanted to see more. I came up with a very simple method of revealing geometry with Lightwave's instancing tool, and then started building the underlying parts of the fully armed and operational battlestation. Since there was a lot of procedural animation, I was seeing a lot of interesting shapes appear that I hadn't planned, but the thing that really pulls it together is the new score by Ben Botkin.

See Also:

- Death Star Architect Speaks Out, Defends Design of Exhaust Port

- Energy Company Calculates Daily Operating Cost of the Death Star

- The Death Star vs. Florida and Other Photorealistic Scale Comparisons


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hansolosays
236 days ago
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:)
Norfolk, Virginia
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Watch the new trailer for Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One

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We got our first look at Steven Spielberg’s next big science fiction movie Ready Player One at San Diego Comic-Con earlier this year, and today, Warner Bros. released a new trailer on Facebook Live, with author Ernie Cline answering questions about the origins of the story.

Based Ernie Cline’s debut novel, Ready Player One is set in a dystopian world where almost everyone spends a majority of their time in a virtual reality system known as OASIS, where players can visit any conceivable world (allowing the book to mash up an incredible number of ‘80s pop culture references). The trailer opens with Wade Watts (played by The Tree of Life / X-Men: Apocalypse star Tye Sheridan) saying that he got his name because his father thought that it sounded like a superhero name. He then talks about OASIS, which allows people to do anything, and that people stay because they can become anyone.

The trailer then shows James Halliday, the founder of OASIS, who tells gamers that he’s died, but that he left behind a massive Easter egg hunt: whoever finds the three hidden keys will get control of the entire system. Wade is one such participant, who teams up with another competitor, Art3mis (played by Bates Motel’s Olivia Cooke), to find the three clues before a major corporation does.

Along with the trailer, Warner Bros. released a retro poster for the film that harkens back to the novel’s paperback cover. As Kotaku pointed out, there’s one thing that’s a little... off about it.

 Image: Warner Bros

Ready Player One hits theaters on March 30th, 2018.

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hansolosays
252 days ago
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:)
Norfolk, Virginia
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Ron Swanson tells Ajit Pai he has no honor for killing net neutrality

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Even FCC chairman Ajit Pai’s heroes can’t stand him.

Ron Swanson, the ornery small-government hero of Parks and Recreation, despises public officials who abuse their power. So when Pai showed off his signed “Ron Swanson Pyramid of Greatness” to Vice News, Swanson put him on notice.

Here’s what Nick Offerman, the man who played Swanson’s iconic role, had to say:

Pai plans to kill net neutrality next Thursday. Too bad he’s not making friends.

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hansolosays
254 days ago
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Norfolk, Virginia
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Old Man’s War in Development at Netflix

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For those who don’t know, yes, that’s the original of the Old Man’s War cover art. It’s on my office wall. And yes, that’s my hand.

So here’s some lively holiday news: An Old Man’s War movie is currently in development at Netflix. Surprise! Here are the details over at Deadline.com. I’m pretty happy about this.

And now, your questions:

Are you excited?

Hell, yes. One, because I would love to see an OMW movie. But also, two, Netflix is a place where a lot of fantastic entertainment is happening these days. It’s trying a lot of things and taking a lot of chances, and most people I know who are working with Netflix are thrilled about being there right now. It really seems like it could be a great place for the OMW universe.

So is this a movie or TV series?

It’s a movie. On your television!

(Or computer or phone or monitor or wherever you choose to watch Netflix, I don’t judge.)

But can a two to three hour movie truly hold the vastness and complexity of Old Man’s War?

I mean, yeah. It’s a pretty speedy story in that first book. And as to the rest of the universe of the series, if the first OMW movie works and people watch it and like it (hint, hint), we can have sequels. There are six books! We have lots to work with.

Who is going to be in the film? You should get [insert favorite filmmaker/actor here]!

Whoa, there. This is the development announcement, where we announce the studio (Netflix) and the producers (Jon Shestack Productions and Madhouse Entertainment). Now that we’re all on board with making the movie, we’ll start putting all the puzzle pieces together. Don’t worry; when we pick folks, we’ll probably do follow-up announcements.

Hey, wasn’t Old Man’s War in development as a movie, and a TV series, before?

Indeed it was. It was in development at Paramount for a while as a movie, and then at Syfy as a TV series.

What happened?

It just didn’t work out. Both times, really smart folks did a really excellent job and tried to make it happen, but the entertainment industry is what it is, and the stars didn’t align.

But this time will be different!

Well, yes, I hope so. It would be nice. I think we have the studio and producers to make it happen.

How long has this been percolating?

I got the rights to OMW back in the summer. We fielded pitches and offers and then in October, while I was out in California, I had a meeting with the producers. After that it was just waiting on contracts.

Man, lawyers, am I right?

In this case, I’m a big fan of lawyers. Mine (Matt Sugarman) has done very well by me. As has my film/TV agent, Joel Gotler, and my book agent Ethan Ellenberg has been part of this particular brain trust, too. It takes a village to make a good deal.

How involved will you be in the production?

As the article linked above notes, I’m an executive producer on the movie, so I’m pretty substantially involved. Which is nice! I have opinions, you know. I’m going to share them.

So can I have a job?

You’ll have to go through official channels.

You’re an executive producer! You’re an official channel!

Yes, but not that official channel.

Okay, well, can I give you this script of something entirely unrelated?

No.

Hollywood’s changed you, man.

It always does.

So, this is great, but what I really want is a film/TV version of [insert another book/story I wrote here].

I have a number of things in various stages of development, only one other of which (The Collapsing Empire) is currently public knowledge. When/if those other projects get to public knowledge stage, trust me, I’ll be talking about them. Just like this, in fact.

I will say that it’s an exciting time to be me, and that with the projects currently in play, I’m lucky to be working with some incredible people. I feel very fortunate that this gets to be my life. And today, I feel particularly fortunate that we’re working to get this Old Man’s War movie to you.

Arrrrgh I can’t wait HELP ME.

Well, there are the books. And Old Man’s War itself is just newly released in a delightful pocket-sized hardcover edition! Which, by the way, if you order from Jay and Mary’s Book Center through this Sunday, I will happily sign and personalize for you (along with any other book of mine you buy).

I see how you dropped an ad for yourself in there, Scalzi.

Yes, well. I’ve got bills, folks.

I have other questions or comments!

That’s what the comment thread is for. Note I’m on deadline (uuuhh, an actual deadline, not just the entertainment news site), so responses might not be immediate. But I’ll get in there.


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hansolosays
254 days ago
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I really liked that book... hopefully they can do it justice
Norfolk, Virginia
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254 days ago
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2 public comments
acdha
255 days ago
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Oooooh…
Washington, DC
Ferret
255 days ago
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Woooo!
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