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The Missing Links: Invasion of the Chickens, A History

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The Future Is Now
Because in the 1960s the future was 50 or more years from then, which could be now. So now is the future for the 1960s. The same could be said for the 1890s, when 50% of the future was 51-500 years from that point in time. But when is the future now? Oh, just look at this chart.

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On Writing & Snoopy
Everyone’s favorite cartoon Beagle waxes philosophical on writing - and gets some help from some people that know a thing or two about it.

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My Arm Itches. Oh Sweet Lord, It’s Flesh Eating Bacteria!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Probably. It might just be an itch. But I’m pretty sure it’s flesh eating bacteria.

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We Have Some of the Best Readers and Commenters Around
But we do get the occasional spammer trying to sell us cheap Uggs. Here's how Tumblr keeps out the trolls.

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Today Is Mr. T's 60th Birthday!
Celebrate by reliving that magical Christmas of '83 when Laurence Tureaud played the White House Santa.

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The Chicken Coup
The new issue of Smithsonian magazine details the sweeping epic tale of how the chicken ended up on everyone’s plate. They also have a gallery of chickens dressed as famous historical figures. Because that’s funny.


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If A James Bond Villain Built A Pool
It would probably resemble this 66 million gallon behemoth.


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And A Few Random Things That Occurred to Me:

- On this past weekend’s season finale, Kristen Wiig received a send-off like very few other SNL cast members ever have. I think it proves that I was right to include her in my Top 10.

- In her Weekend Links this past Saturday, Allison Keene included a story asking whether you can call a 9-year old a psychopath. I don’t know the answer to that, but after a weekend of my wife being out of town, I do know you can call a 2-year old one.

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Live Smarter
A Simple Way to Charge Your iPhone in 5 Minutes
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Spotting the “low battery” notification on your phone is usually followed by a frantic search for an outlet and further stress over the fact that you may not have time for a full charge. On iPhones, plugging your device into the wall for five minutes might result in only a modest increase of about three percent or so. But this tip from Business Insider Tech may allow you to squeeze out a little more juice.

The trick? Before charging, put your phone in Airplane Mode so that you reduce the number of energy-sucking tasks (signal searching, fielding incoming communications) your device will try and perform.

Next, take the cover off if you have one (the phone might be generating extra heat as a result). Finally, try to use an iPad adapter, which has demonstrated a faster rate of charging than the adapter that comes with your iPhone.

Do that and you’ll likely double your battery boost, from about three to six percent. It may not sound like much, but that little bit of extra juice might keep you connected until you’re able to plug it in for a full charge.

[h/t Business Insider Tech]

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Live Smarter
Trying to Save Money? Avoid Shopping on a Smartphone
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Today, Americans do most of their shopping online—but as anyone who’s indulged in late-night retail therapy likely knows, this convenience often can come with an added cost. Trying to curb expenses, but don't want to swear off the convenience of ordering groceries in your PJs? New research shows that shopping on a desktop computer instead of a mobile phone may help you avoid making foolish purchases, according to Co. Design. Ying Zhu, a marketing professor at the University of British Columbia-Okanagan, recently led a study to measure how touchscreen technology affects consumer behavior. Published in the Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, her research found that people are more likely to make more frivolous, impulsive purchases if they’re shopping on their phones than if they’re facing a computer monitor. Zhu, along with study co-author Jeffrey Meyer of Bowling Green State University, ran a series of lab experiments on student participants to observe how different electronic devices affected shoppers’ thinking styles and intentions. Their aim was to see if subjects' purchasing goals changed when it came to buying frivolous things, like chocolate or massages, or more practical things, like food or office supplies. In one experiment, participants were randomly assigned to use a desktop or a touchscreen. Then, they were presented with an offer to purchase either a frivolous item (a $50 restaurant certificate for $30) or a useful one (a $50 grocery certificate for $30). These subjects used a three-point scale to gauge how likely they were to purchase the offer, and they also evaluated how practical or frivolous each item was. (Participants rated the restaurant certificate to be more indulgent than the grocery certificate.) Sure enough, the researchers found that participants had "significantly higher" purchase intentions for hedonic (i.e. pleasurable) products when buying on touchscreens than on desktops, according to the study. On the flip side, participants had significantly higher purchase intentions for utilitarian (i.e. practical) products while using desktops instead of touchscreens. "The playful and fun nature of the touchscreen enhances consumers' favor of hedonic products; while the logical and functional nature of a desktop endorses the consumers' preference for utilitarian products," Zhu explains in a press release. The study also found that participants using touchscreen technology scored significantly higher on "experiential thinking" than subjects using desktop computers, whereas those with desktop computers demonstrated higher scores for rational thinking. “When you’re in an experiential thinking mode, [you crave] excitement, a different experience,” Zhu explained to Co. Design. “When you’re on the desktop, with all the work emails, that interface puts you into a rational thinking style. While you’re in a rational thinking style, when you assess a product, you’ll look for something with functionality and specific uses.” Zhu’s advice for consumers looking to conserve cash? Stow away the smartphone when you’re itching to splurge on a guilty pleasure. [h/t Fast Company]

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