The Null Device
Seldom-asked questions about Japanese culture; from why office workers make exaggerated jogging movements when moving about through the office to why green traffic lights are said to be blue in Japanese; from Western cartoon characters having fifth fingers added for the Japanese market (to avoid looking like yakuza or untouchables), to why the country is called "Japan" in English whilst being called "Nihon" or "Nippon" in Japanese; with plenty of colourful anecdotes. (via Found)
Also via bOING bOING, a table of software license fees in terms of earning power, for various countries. Did you know that it takes the average Burundian more than five and a half years to earn enough to buy a copy of Windows XP and MS Office, whereas it takes the average Luxembourgian less than a week, and the average American slightly longer than that?
Satirical Christian webzine (yes, there is such a thing) Ship of Fools has a feature titled the 12 Days of Kitschmas, bringing a choice selection of tacky Christian-themed consumer goods; from unrealistically fair-skinned holy figurines of several varieties to flashing cross mobile-phone covers (I bet everyone in the cool cliques in Bible-belt high schools has one of these) to this artfully deceptive Lord of the Kings jigsaw puzzle, seemingly designed to nudge its young recipient into permature teenage Satanism; and who can go past a nail in a cardboard box:
COMING SOON! A 7-inch screw in a cardboard box, to remind you of what George Bush and Tony Blair are doing to the Middle East! Meanwhile, get your nail in a cardboard box for just $8.99
(via bOING bOING)