Watch Motherboard’s new documentary about the jellyfish-beating science behind Diana Nyad’s 53-hour swim from Cuba to Florida.
Tenga is a Japanese manufacturer of disposable male sex toys—they make cylindrical “masturbation aids” that somehow don’t seem as repulsive as the Fleshlight (perhaps mostly because they’re not called a fleshlight). They’re also promoting a jerry-rigged amalgam of software and robotics that’s easily the closest you can come to having physical sex with a video game.
Happy Valentine’s Day
Future Harper’s Index of America
Numbers are fucked. Numbers know more about America than America knows about America. It’s like our whole existence is a string of digits some dork fantasized in his sleep and accidentally whipped into creation. Based on the evidence at hand, the state of where we’re headed only gets grosser, which maybe should be more obvious every hour than it already is.
By my calculation, here are some predictions, with a head-nod to the Harper’s Index of the Not Too Far To Come:
Average height of a newborn baby in 2060: 30”
In 2090: 0.4”
Percentage of Americans who believe “Silent Night” was written by Jesus Christ: 86
Number of wolves kept as house pets in the United States: 3,054,000
Of wolf-human hybrids born to those households: 98,000
Times John “Papa John” Schnatter will be reelected to presidential office following constitutional amendment: 107
Number of stand-ins believed to extend the life of “Papa John”: 81
Number of topping available for order on a Papa John’s pizza during his presidency: 2
Average weight of pizza consumed per week per citizen (in pounds): 9
Average weight of citizen (in new unpronounceable measurement designed to veil actual impact of a person’s weight as indicative of health): 4
Average weight of cover models of America Monthly magazine (subscription required with citizenship): .0003
Total sequels in Fast and the Furious chain filmed before the interior collapse of the moon: 39
Number of additional Biblical Commandments “discovered” chiseled onto the face of silver asteroid that will crash down and obliterate the lower half of Florida: 209
Length of Disney World Employee Memorial Wall and Hotel constructed along the border between U.S. and Mexico (in miles): 1,933
Who Is ‘Her’? – by James Franco
Spike Jonze’s Her is a story about the death of human love masked as a love story between a man, Theo (Joaquin Phoenix), and his sexy artificially intelligent operating system, Samantha (Scarlett Johansson’s voice). Theo works as a professional surrogate letter-writer, a profession that’s equal parts emotional detective, jaded but secretly hopeful voyeur, and empathetic poet. His specialty is the intimate love letter, so his letters give voice to the feelings for the couples that hire him. This service, one set in an unnamed metropolis in the near future (and was shot both in Los Angeles and Shanghai to give the grey and pastel Google-age sheen to the exteriors) provides a parallel for Theo’s eventual relationship with his OS, an ethereal and exponentially hyper-intelligent lover who says everything he wants to hear, just like Theo’s letters do for his clients. The central questions of the film are existential: What does it mean to be human? How do we define emotions? Can something digital, and programmed, have a personality? How valuable are our bodies in the dawning age of total digital immersion?
I Went Looking for Love at Tinder’s Launch Party
Tinder’s popularity rises with the increasing number of lonely people in the world. Largely capitalizing on the solitude of the city-dwelling 20-somethings who form the majority of the app’s users, it has reduced the human romantic experience down to its most basic level. Your iPhone flashes up a picture of a stranger’s face. Put your thumb on it and swipe left if you don’t want to have sex with them; swipe right if you do. If you’re the kind of puritanical moralist who has issues with that, then fuck you. When you’re little more than a faceless urban speck, wedged in that sticky interim period between formal education and a living wage, techno-dogging offers a welcome distraction.
However, I was still a little surprised when my friend forwarded me this invitation to an official Tinder “Launch Party” in London, England:
Why was this party occurring over a year after the app’s actual launch? Maybe the launch was going to serve as an inaugural huzzah for a sort of Tinder elite, a pool of the most right-swiped people in Britain. Maybe the people who run Tinder just want to renew the hype around it after a couple of months of the media talking it to death. Could it perhaps be an orgy? Obviously I had nothing better to do that evening, so I went down to take a look and find out what Tinder’s finest really thought of Jack, 24, Peckham.
David Bowie just sent us his new video for “Love is Lost.” Since we’re obliged to do anything he says, we decided to premiere it.