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There's a Long Wait to Check Out the 'Most Exclusive Website'

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It's human nature to want instant gratification‚ which is probably in part why the Internet is so popular. Not only is our access to information seemingly limitless, it's often instantaneous, too. When it's not—if, say, our connection happens to be slow—we quickly grow critical of what constitutes being worth the wait. And yet, a new website is proving that arbitrary exclusivity and long lines can lend even unknown destinations a certain cachet.

MostExclusiveWebsite.com lives up to its URL. It allows only one visitor at time, for 60-second increments; at the end of your minute, you're booted from the site. At the time of writing this, there were more than 44,000 people in virtual line as ticket number #168952—someone by the name of "matheus"— was currently enjoying whatever mysteries lie beyond the perpetual 30-second countdown clock.

The site was launched in March of this year by Justin Foley as a way of experimenting with the open source web framework Meteor.

"The Internet is kind of designed to be open and accessible, and when you put a site up, you want as many people as possible to connect to it. So, what if I did something that was the antithesis of that?" he told the Daily Dot.

At first, no one really took notice. Foley posted it on Reddit's r/Funny, but with wait times hovering around a mere minute, the point of the experience was moot. Recently, however, it found new life on Reddit's r/InternetIsBeautiful after being ranked number one on a list of "10 Completely Useless Websites" by blog Johnny Lists. And now 782739 minutes (and counting) have collectively been spent waiting. The average user spends 20 minutes waiting on the site (or, let's be honest, browsing other tabs without ticketed entry); the longest wait time Foley has heard of is six hours, which even he doesn't recommend. 

"I'm not sure anything on the Internet is worth six hours of waiting," he quipped.

What did that particular user find after those six hours? You could search around on the wait-free Internet for spoilers, but it's just not the same as taking a ticket and getting in line.

[h/t Daily Dot]

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George Washington’s Incredible Hair Routine

America's Founding Fathers had some truly defining locks, but we tend to think of those well-coiffed white curls—with their black ribbon hair ties and perfectly-managed frizz—as being wigs. Not so in the case of the main man himself, George Washington.

As Robert Krulwich reported at National Geographic, a 2010 biography on our first president—Washington: A Life, by Ron Chernow—reveals that the man “never wore a wig.” In fact, his signature style was simply the result of an elaborately constructed coiffure that far surpasses most morning hair routines, and even some “fancy” hair routines.

The style Washington was sporting was actually a tough look for his day. In the late 18th century, such a hairdo would have been worn by military men.

While the hair itself was all real, the color was not. Washington’s true hue was a reddish brown color, which he powdered in a fashion that’s truly delightful to imagine. George would (likely) don a powdering robe, dip a puff made of silk strips into his powder of choice (there are a few options for what he might have used), bend his head over, and shake the puff out over his scalp in a big cloud.

To achieve the actual ‘do, Washington kept his hair long and would then pull it back into a tight braid or simply tie it at the back. This helped to showcase the forehead, which was very in vogue at the time. On occasion, he—or an attendant—would bunch the slack into a black silk bag at the nape of the neck, perhaps to help protect his clothing from the powder. Then he would fluff the hair on each side of his head to make “wings” and secure the look with pomade or good old natural oils.

To get a better sense of the play-by-play, check out the awesome illustrations by Wendy MacNaughton that accompany Krulwich’s post.

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"American Mall," Bloomberg
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Unwinnable Video Game Challenges You to Keep a Shopping Mall in Business
"American Mall," Bloomberg
"American Mall," Bloomberg

Shopping malls, once the cultural hub of every suburb in America, have become a punchline in the e-commerce era. There are plenty of malls around today, but they tend to be money pits, considering the hundreds of "dead malls" haunting the landscape. Just how hard is it to keep a mall afloat in the current economy? American Mall, a new video game from Bloomberg, attempts to give an answer.

After choosing which tycoon character you want as your stand-in, you're thrown into a mall—rendered in 1980s-style graphics—already struggling to stay in business. The building is filled with rats and garbage you have to clean up if you want to keep shoppers happy. Every few seconds you're contacted by another store owner begging you to lower their rent, and you must either take the loss or risk them packing up for good. When stores are vacated, it's your job to fill them, but it turns out there aren't too many businesses interested in setting up shop in a dying mall.

You can try gimmicks like food trucks and indoor playgrounds to keep customers interested, but in the end your mall will bleed too much money to support itself. You can try playing the bleak game for yourself here—maybe it will put some of the retail casualties of the last decade into perspective.

[h/t Co.Design]

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