archives.design archives designs from the Internet Archive

This almost feels like archival inception and that’s honestly the best kind of inception to me.

archives.design is a digital archive of design-related items from the Internet Archive, curated by Valery Marier. She runs the site in her free time. Naturally, the site itself is beautifully crafted and seeing all the covers on a digital shelf in all their glory is exquisite.

Submit an item to the collection by emailing Valery at info@archives.design.

Weird and wild Wikipedia rabbit holes

During my first attempt at a university education away from home, I spent a lot of time falling down Wikipedia rabbit holes to combat loneliness. It filled my head with even more useless information but I had fun doing it.

Back in January, writers from The Ringer discussed some of the weirdest Wikipedia wormholes they’d found themselves in. Some were straightforward like John Gonzalez’s trip from Prometheus (the movie) to Prometheus (the Ancient Greek god who stole fire from the Gods to give to humanity, which he made from clay, and suffered the consequences).

Others were more long-winded like Michael Baumann’s route from Sir Arthur Currie, an officer in the Canadian army who fought in WWI, to Sea Dragon, a concept-designed rocket that could launch from the sea (At 150m long and 23m in diameter, it would have been the largest rocket ever built.)

My point is: All Wikipedia wormholes lead to giant rockets and/or giant explosions.

For me, I can’t remember any specific Wikiholes but I’ll make some time and report back.

A Bloodborne comic but it stars Frasier and Niles Crane

I’ve never played Bloodborne but I did watch Frasier and that’s all that matters in this hilarious comic by Joe Chouinard. And if you didn’t read this in their voices, you’re not a true fan!

Speaking of Frasier, here are some of Niles’s best deep burns.

What do you actually get when you buy an NFT token?

bitcoin

I’m a vocal critic of NFTs (non-fungible tokens). I think they stink and they’re a serious moral and environmental hazard. Earlier today, I saw a Twitter thread about what you get from an NFT token and, well, it caused the tweeter’s eyebrows to break the laws of physics and biology:

@jonty tweeted: Out of curiosity I dug into how NFT's actually reference the media you're "buying" and my eyebrows are now orbiting the moon

I recommend you read through the thread but the key part is: whoever sells you the NFT keeps all aspects of the NFT and you get a file that references the digital file you pay for that can be lost if the server hosting it disappears. In essence, they’re worthless.

Short version: The NFT token you bought either points to a URL on the internet, or an IPFS hash. In most circumstances it references an IPFS gateway on the internet run by the startup you bought the NFT from. Oh, and that URL is not the media. That URL is a JSON metadata file

Second tweet from the thread

I’ve seen a suggestion that NFTs can help marginalised artists make money from their art in an easier way. But how many marginalised artists are making $70m from a JPG like this monstrosity?

UROULETTE takes you on a random journey through the Web

There’s nothing I love more than falling down a small Web rabbit hole and UROULETTE gives me that buzz along with the risks associated with its namesake.

Those risks relate to the potential broken links. As the site launched in 1998, a lot of the random links you’ll find won’t go anywhere. Link rot is a growing problem on the Web and sites like these are akin to visiting abandoned buildings in major cities.

But if you’re lucky enough, you’ll find an awesome site that hasn’t changed in decades and nothing beats seeing Times New Roman and minimal styling on the internet (before it was called brutalist web design).

Internet related: the internet art of Mazaccio & Drowilal, a gallery of early internet images, and over a sextillion ways to spell Viagra.

The internet art of Mazaccio & Drowilal

Skɪz(ə)m exhibition view (copyright Martin Polak, 2020)

Mazaccio & Drowilal are a French art duo that make artworks from found internet images.

Whether it’s IRL still lifes of desktop icons, dogs staring wistfully into sunsets, or celebrity snapshots defaced with paint and tape, the duo’s subject matter is universally familiar to anyone who’s found themselves in a thumb scroll wormhole, and that’s exactly the point.

Quote from It’s Nice That

It’s all trés cool, trés French, and trés internet. That sentence didn’t make any sense. But the art does to me and that’s all that matters.

Internet-related: Internet Archaeology: a gallery of early internet images

Steamed Hams but its an oral history

Originally called “Chalmers vs. Skinner,” the two-minute-and-48-second piece was part of an unusual episode of The Simpsons that aired during the show’s seventh season, on April 14, 1996. While most episodes of The Simpsons focus on the show’s titular family, “22 Short Films About Springfield” was different, as it was broken up into a series of short segments focusing on Springfield’s supporting characters. “Steamed Hams” — as “Chalmers vs. Skinner” would later come to be known — was simply one of those segments. 

(via MEL)

See also: Steamed Hams but there’s a different animator every 13 seconds, in the style of Seinfeld, and in the style of Dragonball Z.

RELAXATION TAPE NO. 2: the opposite of ASMR

RELAXATION TAPE NO. 2

(Content warning: the video content in this article contains violent and flashing images not suitable for people with photosensitive epilepsy or related conditions)

As much as I love ASMR, I like off-kilter zany stuff on the Internet. I spent most of my late teens getting into YouTube Poops and YTMND memes. The reason I use ASMR in this context is that it serves as a good analogue for what I’m about to show you. It’s truly the opposite of ASMR: it’s chaotic, nonsensical, loud, brash, and everything ASMR isn’t.

RELAXATION TAPE NO. 2 (R-rated cut)

A new video mixtape from the CDTcrew; naughty bits removed. Uncut DVD will be available at some point. Meanwhile--enjoy and remember to relax! And YouTube--this is for adults only and is for entertainment purposes only…relax.

RELAXATION TAPE NO. 2 is a collection of videos made by CDTcrew and I have no idea what to call them. But I find them funny for their chaos and randomness. Clips appear to have been recorded on VHS, old or new, with echoey vocals and all kinds of video effects. It’s also violent and garish but in a cinematic sense. There’s punching, blood, explosions, shouting, screaming, and Warner Bros cartoons. And this is with the “naughty bits removed”.

One YouTube commenter had it right:

this is like the video version of grind-core.

I’ve never listened to grindcore but, given the sound of the name, it fits whatever style of videography RELAXATION TAPE NO. 2 is. This won’t be to everyone’s tastes and that’s totally acceptable—I don’t even know why it’s close to any of my tastes—but it appears to have a fan base if the comment section is anything to go by.

Enjoy! Or not. Probably not.

Meet Gav – the huge TikTok baby

Meet Gav – the huge TikTok baby

I’m still not on TikTok and still have no interest in joining. But after the awesome dancing duck TikTok, there’s a new kid on the block. Literally:

@kat.027

##gav ##boom ##babypowder

♬ Woah – KRYPTO9095 feat. D3Mstreet

Gav isn’t actually a baby – he’s 3 apparently – but even then, he’s huge. In the above video, Gav is bouncing on his dad’s stomach like he’s a bucking bronco. And that’s baby powder by the way, although pretending it’s smoke adds to the hilarity.

Then there’s Gav doing his best World’s Strongest Baby impression or Gav taking a sugar snooze after devouring candy and eggs for Easter. But the comments make it for me. Check this Twitter thread as an example. My favourite:

You can follow @kat.027 on TikTok for more of Gav’s big buff baby escapades.

And the award for Cutest Duck TikTok Goes To...

I’m not on TikTok and have no interest in joining. I prefer to catch the funniest TikToks on Twitter and save myself from the boring ones. That strategy has worked well and I hit the jackpot yesterday when I found this:

Dancing with my Duck! | HartYT_ TikTok Compilation 1#

Let me address each incredible part of this TikTok one-by-one.

1. It features a dancing duck

I love ducks. They’re in my top ten animals list and in terms of cuteness, they’re second only to hippos for me. This duck appears to be a Pekin duck (I’ll wait to be corrected) and Joey and Chandler owned one in Friends.

2. Hart was getting into it

Hart is an animator and memer (seriously, go check out his YouTube) who was ready to bust moves with his duck. And he did not disappoint.

3. That song is awesome

Part of the appeal of this TikTok, besides the dancing and the duck, is the song. Twitter provided as it always does and gave the title: Vibe by Cookiee Kawaii.

By now, I’ve watched this feather-shaking duck about 10 times and I’m ready to watch it some more before the day’s up. Happy Black History Month!

Christopher Meloni reads thirst tweets about his ass

Christopher Meloni Reads Thirst Tweets

First thing’s first – this content is probably NSFW. You don’t actually see Christopher Meloni’s butt in this article but there are plenty of sexual references to it.

I admit I enjoy seeing Elliot Stabler when I watch SVU reruns every weeknight on 5 USA. But not for his ass. No, that posterior worship is reserved for the people of the internet as he found out when he read thirst tweets about him.

What’s the fascination with Christopher Meloni’s bum?

Look at the guy. From his time on the drama series Oz, to his 12-year stint on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, the actor has garnered fans of his acting and physique in equal measure.

And there are a lot of web pages about his ass. BuzzFeed made the video at the centre of this article, but in 2015, Alex Naidus and Lara Parker co-wrote Literally Just 17 Pictures Of Christopher Meloni’s Butt, with the subheading “It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.” Do a search to find the rest (with photographic evidence of said derrière).

Thirst tweets

The video clocks in at just under 3 minutes but that’s enough time for Chris to dive into some of the raunchiest thoughts of Twitter and he loved every one of them.

His favourite tweet involved someone’s imaginary conversation with a partner, a “Christopher Meloni mask” and making the “bumm bumm” sound from Law & Order when they… just watch the video and find out for yourself. This post is too erotic.

Was Paul Charles Dozsa the Democracy Manifest Guy?

Not Paul Charles Dozsa but Cecil George Edwards

TL;DR So it appears that the Democracy Manifest guy was not Paul Charles Dozsa but in fact a man named Cecil George Edwards who was mistaken for Dozsa. You can find out more about him and the infamous video in this interview with Edwards.


Back in 2012, I ate at a restaurant in Hampstead, London, just outside the Royal Free Hospital where my dad was getting cancer treatment (he’s fine now). After I finished, I got up and walked out and about halfway between the restaurant and the hospital, I realised: I hadn’t paid. Then I asked myself two things – should I carry on or go back and pay? I couldn’t deal with the guilt of leaving without paying so I went back.

For some, eating and skipping the bill is a way of survival. But for others, it’s a form of arrogance and you’re gonna get caught eventually. Paul Charles Dozsa was the finest example. Born in Szeged, Hungary, in 1940, the former chef and world chess champion was eccentric to say the least. He described himself as a “Hungarian nobleman” and liked to wine and dine in the best hotels and restaurants in Australia where he spent his later life. But he didn’t like to pay for the privilege. He regularly left without paying – pleading poverty when asked. How you can say you are of noble heritage and say you’re poor is beyond me but there we are. Dozsa hustled his way through 54 of these acts. Attempt 55 was the final straw.

Or so people thought.

The infamous “Democracy Manifest” video that most of us now know was part of a longer video, taped by a reporter named Chris Reason for Australia’s Seven News. The full video shows a man being arrested but his real name – Cecil George Edwards – was revealed as well as the fact it was a case of mistaken identity. Edwards was later released that day. The shortened clip was uploaded to in 2009 and soon went viral. And, with viral content comes myths and speculation, which I clearly fell into myself.Other names suggested were John Bartlett and John Ziegler but none were true. It was Edwards all along.

Gentlemen – this is democracy manifest!

Cecil Edwards, upon being put in a “headlock”

Edwards’s identity wasn’t revealed until 2020 when an Australian punk band called The Chats made a music video for their track “Dine ‘N Dash” featuring the real Cecil George Edwards. The reasoning for his theatrics when arrested was to “appear crazy so he might be placed into an asylum where it would be easier to escape”.

For Dozsa, however, his ways of escaping payment included a misplaced wallet, bounced cheques, poverty, and convincing the restaurant that police involvement was a waste of time. As the venues for his crimes were always 5-star establishments, he was discreetly removed without arrest as not to disturb the guests. One such case involved feigning illness to avoid paying.

What is the charge? Eating a meal? A succulent Chinese meal?

Edwards questioning the reason for his arrest

And the reasons for his crimes? The Hungarian Army had implanted a device in his head. He was half right though. At least with the head part. Dozsa passed away in 2003, apparently from a brain tumour (although the story revelation involved breaking the Hippocratic oath). The tumour might have explained the behaviour and his subsequent cognition. But I’m sure he died as he lived – by the seat of his pants with a full belly and no money to pay for the privilege.

And you, sir? Are you waiting to receive my limp penis?

Edwards before being shoved into the car

For more info about Dozsa’s life (there’s a lot more, trust me) check out this forum thread. RIP Paul Charles Dozsa and long live Cecil George Edwards – the real Democracy Manifest Guy.

The magnificent arrest of Paul Charles Dozsa

Tumblr Thinks Everything Is Porn

Welcome to Tumblr

The problem is it seems to be flagging pretty much everything. Gita Jackson of Kotaku profiled some of the stranger subjects deemed inappropriate by Tumblr. They included:

  • Garfield
  • A vase and some plant pots
  • Dinosaurs
  • Some fruit with teeth
  • Mario
  • A roast chicken in a wall
  • A VR prototype

Maybe there needs to be another sub-section for Rule 34. Or it needs to be rewritten altogether.

Check out some of the wildest ones below. Lemme go see what they’ve flagged on my Tumblr account…

(via Kotaku)

My All-Time Favourite Chili Pepper Challenge by AyyOnline

AyyOnline's Chili Pepper Challenge.

The other is the one with the two white girls which I’ll post tomorrow, but back to my all-time fave. AyyOnline was a popular black British Youtuber until he left (and recently came back) and during the chili pepper challenge’s heyday, Ayy joined in. The hottest pepper at the time was the Naga Viper pepper or “Ghost pepper” as it was also known. It was the “World’s Hottest Chili” in 2011 with a rating of 1,382,118 Scoville Heat Units (SHU). Pepper X is the unofficial champion now (used in the Hot Ones’ sauce) but the Naga Viper was the king for quite some time.

The featured image for this post is the precise moment before he took the “deadly” bite; the record scratch “you’re probably wondering how I ended up in this situation” moment. What follows is hilarious. Cue removal of clothing, ice, yoghurt, and some vomiting. The initial reaction was classic. The instant realisation that you’ve made a bad decision and there’s no way out. Well, not a comfortable one anyway. But like he said, he did it for laughs and he got plenty from me over the years. I’m glad he didn’t live up to the ghost pepper’s name and came back.

Fun facts about chili peppers (courtesy of Wikipedia):

  • Chilis were part of the Aztecs’ staple diet and originated in Mexico.
  • The substance that gives chilis their intense heat is called capsaicin.
  • 32.3 million tonnes of green chili peppers and 3.8 million tonnes of dried chili peppers were produced in 2014 worldwide.
  • China is the world’s largest producer of green chillies, providing 50% of the global total.