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YouTube

Watch Everything That Happens Behind the Scenes of An Episode of SNL

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YouTube

One of the American institutions cherished almost as much as watching Saturday Night Live each weekend is the habit of spending the following days complaining about how awful Saturday Night Live was the previous weekend. The American public has a way of labeling every successive new cast as the worst in the show’s long history. Now-legendary casts like the one containing Farley and Sandler and Spade were even hated by many in their own time.

But whether you are an SNL lover or someone who loves to hate it, you can still marvel at the nearly impossible act of getting the show on the air every Saturday. Starting from scratch each week with a brand new guest host poses a ton of challenges, but the biggest stunt seems to be pulling off the breakneck speed required to move seamlessly from sketch to sketch to video to musical act to Weekend Update, all within the confines of a rather compressed studio in New York’s 30 Rock building. A backstage video shared a few years ago shows that the transitions aren't always so easy.

The video above was released yesterday on the SNL YouTube channel. It takes the recent Anna Kendrick episode and reduces it to a 2-plus minute time lapse that allows you to see just how quick and cramped things have to be in order to keep the show on-time and on-track. So, even if you don’t laugh at the show, you’ll probably respect the effort.

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Ikea
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Design
How IKEA Turned the Poäng Chair Into a Classic
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Ikea

IKEA's Poäng chair looks as modern today as it did when it debuted in 1976. The U-shaped lounger has clean lines and a simple structure, and often evokes comparisons to Finnish designer Aalto’s famous “armchair 406.” Its design, however, is ultimately a true fusion of East and West, according to Co.Design.

In 2016, the Poäng celebrated its 40th birthday, and IKEA USA commemorated the occasion (and the 30 million-plus Poäng chairs they’ve sold over the years) by releasing two short videos about the armchair’s history and underlying design philosophy. Together, they tell the story of a fateful collaboration between Lars Engman, a young IKEA designer, and his co-worker, Noboru Nakamura.

Nakamura had initially come to IKEA to learn more about Scandinavian furniture. But the Japanese designer ended up imbuing the Poäng—which was initially called Poem—with his own distinct philosophy. He wanted to create a chair that swung “in an elegant way, which triggered me to imagine Poäng,” Nakamura recalled in a video interview. “That’s how I came up with a rocking chair.”

“A chair shouldn’t be a tool that binds and holds the sitter,” Nakamura explained. “It should rather be a tool that provides us with an emotional richness and creates an image where we let go of stress or frustration by swinging. Such movement in itself has meaning and value.”

Save for upholstery swaps, a 1992 name change, and a new-ish all-wooden frame that's easily flat-packed, the modern-day Poäng is still essentially the same product that customers have purchased and enjoyed for decades. Devotees of the chair can hear the full story by watching IKEA’s videos below—ideally, while swinging away at their desks.

[h/t Co. Design]

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iStock
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Medicine
Why Haven't We Cured Cancer Yet?
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iStock

Walkathons, fundraisers, and ribbon-shaped bumper stickers raise research dollars and boost spirits, but cancer—the dreaded disease that affects more than 14 million people and their families at any given time—still remains bereft of a cure.

Why? For starters, cancer isn't just one disease—it's more than 100 of them, with different causes. This makes it impossible to treat each one using a one-size-fits-all method. Secondly, scientists use lab-grown cell lines cultivated from human tumors to develop cancer therapies. Living masses are far more complex, so potential treatments that show promise in lab experiments often don't work on cancer patients. As for the tumors themselves, they're prone to tiny genetic mutations, so just one growth might contain multiple types of cancer cells, and even unique sub-clones of tumors. These distinct entities might not respond the same way, or at all, to the same drug.

These are just a few of the challenges that cancer researchers face—but the good news is that they're working to beat all of them, as this TED-Ed video explains below.

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