The Null Device


The Onion's in fine form today: Lowest Common Denominator Continues To Plummet:

In a Syracuse University study conducted last month, reruns of Happy Days, a show derided by 1970s critics as "targeted to third-graders," were deemed "beyond comprehension" by 75 percent of present-day third-graders. The surveyed students expressed frustration with the show's characters, some of which exhibited more than one trait. "Fonzie rides a motorcycle, but he also likes girls," one subject said. "I don't get it." The test group also took issue with Happy Days' "boring," non-fatal motorcycle crashes and confusing lack of gunplay and/or graphic nudity.

decline humour satire stupidity the onion 0

Neuroscientists at the Max Planck Institute have found that the brain is hardwired to detect musical harmony and distinguish it from noise or disharmony. The distinction appears to be made in Broca's area, which is also involved in understanding language.


Proprietary format good, open format bad: Here comes another CD copy protection scheme, which hopes to make CDs you cannot rip into your MP3 collection for your own personal use. Somehow, this new system will redirect the felons who rip CDs to a site where they can download access-controlled Windows Media files. Of course, this locks you into Microsoft's platform, but then again, I suspect that this access control technique may not work on other platforms (such as Linux).


A good picture from the May Day protests in London (currently still under way).