BlookUp turns your social media updates and blog posts into books

(This is not an ad.)

When I was looking for a way to make a photo book out of some of my photos, I came across BlookUp. The project, created by Philippe Bruno, allows you to upload your tweets, blog posts, Facebook posts, or even Tumblr posts and create books for anyone who wants them.

This can work for people or companies who pride themselves on their social media presence or want to reset online but keep some of their favourite thoughts and memories in physical form. The main reason I wanted to make my own photobook was because Sean Brown did the same with his book, In No Particular Order (available at the Curves Shop and Selfridges if you’re in the UK). The ethos behind it was this: “don’t delete your old work”. Services like BlookUp help you from throwing that work in the digital trash.

Language without emojis

Clo S. of This Too Shall Grow went two weeks without using emojis and chronicled her experiment:

On the first day of my experiment, I was already worrying that I wasn’t warm enough, or wasn’t conveying my reactions well enough. On the second day, I missed using emojis. It hadn’t even been 48 hours, but the good stuff comes when you push through, so I kept at it. On the third day, finally, I started feeling good about this. I wrote:

“This is actually cool, I don’t know if I want to get back to emojis. Maybe I just needed to get the habit out of my system.”

No shit, Sherlock.

In the first few days, I did have to edit emojis out of my messages, as I was using them reflexively. During this experiment, I pondered about the importance of emojis to convey banter, being concerned that without them, I’d simply come across as mean.

I could probably do two weeks but it’d be tough and I’d worry if I was coming across as cold and distant. But if you asked me to stop saying “lol” and “haha” at the end of sentences? Big struggle. I was talking to a friend the other day who’d asked me how I was and we talked about how we used “lol” to cushion the blow of expressing less-than-pleasant feelings. It’s a crutch, for sure, and emojis add a certain flavour to our digital conversations, for good or bad.

Japanese culture related: ‘Repro Japan’ and how Japanese culture has influenced the rest of the world, ‘I’m just experiencing Japanese culture’, and Fumi Ishino’s ‘Index of Fillers’

Scott Seiss's retail TikToks (compilation)

Scott Seiss Retail TikTok Compilation FULL

Get ready for 5 minutes of belly laughing (and flashbacks if you’ve ever worked in retail or customer service). Scott Seiss is a writer and comedian who took to TikTok to make these grouchy retail meme videos. He is tired of your mess and is ready to tell you about yourself.

TikTok related: Gav – the huge TikTok baby and the cutest duck TikTok

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.

TikTok relatedScott Seiss’s retail TikToks and the cutest duck TikTok