17 Movie Posters From a Reddit Fan Favorite

Among the many novelty reddit accounts, Your_Post_As_A_Movie stands out as a delight. On the subreddit r/pics (one of the default forums non-members see when they go to the main page), Your_Post_As_A_Movie selects photos or other images that users have posted to make into a fake movie poster. The pictures range from lovely landscapes to funny observations and even family snapshots, but with a eye for design and Photoshop skills, plus credits and an appropriate title, they get transformed into a feature film. And they appear seemingly instantly. Take a look at the poster he (or she) made for this article:

Oh, sure, it’s self-congratulatory, but aren’t all movie posters? After all, it’s a form of advertising. If you look at it full size, you’ll see, among the many credits to reddit, a small logo at the bottom right saying “created especially for mental_floss.”

1. EON

A nice photograph of an industrial site by Cheesedude666 became a dystopian future in the film EON. Notice the casting choices. That’s exactly who the producers of this movie would want.

2. NIGHT AT THE AQUARIUM

A father captures a moment in his daughter’s life when the family visited an aquarium. That moment became the magical movie Night at the Aquarium. Redditor dopplerizer, who took the original photograph, immediately said he was going to hang the poster in his daughter’s room. What a treat!

3. NEW YORK NEW YORK

A picture of New York City during Fleet Week last year was posted by the photographer’s brother, redditor manbear69. It’s a great picture, but more exciting as the alien invasion movie New York New York. The addition of Will Smith, Jeff Goldblum, and a lot of ominous smoke makes it an entirely different story. Note that in this, and every movie poster, the name of the redditor posting the picture can be found in the credits.

4. THE KARATE CAT

A funny picture of a cat wearing martial arts gear by kittypotter was funny enough on its own, especially with that facial expression. It’s even funnier as the movie The Karate Cat, presumably aimed at a younger audience.  The cat’s expression pegs him as the world-weary reluctant hero who rises to the occasion to dispense justice.      

5. KUIPER

DeviantART member Mygrapefruit took one of her photographs and dressed it up as an otherworldly scene. When it was posted to reddit last year, Your_Post_As_A_Movie devised the film Kuiper. I’d go see it.

6. YOU ARE FAT

A high-res photograph of a mouthwatering double cheeseburger with all the trimmings, presumably for advertising purposes, gets a documentary. And who better to produce You Are Fat than Morgan Spurlock, who gained fame with his 2004 documentary Super Size Me?  

7. DAYS OF GLORY

Redditor current_rotations took a picture at Lollapalooza after festival attendees helped this fellow crowd-surf to the front of the stage. It’s a great picture, and Your_Post_As_A_Movie saw an inspiring biopic titled Days of Glory.

8. NOWHERELAND

A movie poster can be quite intriguing even without the stars’ faces. We already know what they look like; what we really want to see is something we haven’t seen before. The original photograph of a bridge was so green and beautiful, it had to be the setting of a fairy tale. Nowhereland looks like it would be a great film, especially with two stars from Game of Thrones appearing in it.   

9. THE VOID

DonTago posted a colorful picture of a pine forest. It wasn’t the colors that interested Your_Post_As_A_Movie, but the shapes. In The Void, that forest became a dark and scary place featuring ghostly specters.

10. TURTLE POWER

Just last week, Delosisland shared a photo of herself with a turtle that approached her on the beach. It looked like the premise of a buddy comedy, and Your_Post_As_A_Movie made it so

11. JOURNEY’S END

When a soothing .gif of a lake was posted, Your_Post_As_A_Movie turned it into an intriguing animated tease for the adventure film Journey's End.

12. LIFE, LIBERTY, AND THE PURSUIT OF ZOMBIES

Redditor phobos512 stood in the shadow and took a photo of the Washington Monument backlit by the sun. The flags contrast nicely with the dark obelisk. Your_Post_As_A_Movie was more impressed by the ominous look of the iconic monument, and went with a dark theme in Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Zombies. You can almost see our elected representatives fighting for the survival of their beloved country.   

13. ASSASSIN’S CLUB

A quartet of housemates took a group photo, and barbecuemeatgames shared it on reddit, noting how they “ended up looking like bad asses.” Not only that, but you can see the different “types” that would be cast in an ensemble crime film. Your_Post_As_A_Movie did a good job assembling the Hollywood stars for Assassin’s Club.

14. LONDON BRIDGE

A striking aerial view of London and the Thames is the setting of a disaster flick in London Bridge. It’s a bridge, and it’s in London. Should it matter that the focus of the original photograph is Tower Bridge? When that was pointed out, Your_Post_As_A_Movie worked quickly to make it work as London’s Bridges, plural, with all the bridges being blown up. Any time Your_Post_As_A_Movie has to make a quick correction, it is presented as the “director’s cut.”  

15. HOW TO BUILD YOUR OWN DEATH STAR

The art used doesn’t have to be a photograph. SirJediPanda showed us a drawing he did during a boring class, which turned the lecture into a lesson on building a Death Star. It became an educational film titled, appropriately enough, How to Build Your Own Deathstar (Episode One).  

16. 1911

Redditor photojacker colors photographs at Dynamichrome. He presented a colorized version of a picture Herbert Ponting took in Antarctica in 1911 during the Terra Nova expedition. It became a historical drama called 1911.

17. MY OTHER ME

Photographer markbleeblu shared a portrait he took using the reflective power of water. The subject bears a remarkable resemblance to Kiera Knightly in the picture, so she was cast as the star of the movie My Other Me. Turned on its side, the portrait became an eerie cinematic special effect.  

All images via imgur courtesy of Your_Post_As_A_Movie.

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Undersea Internet Cables Could Be Key to the Future of Earthquake Detection
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iStock

Considering that 70 percent of the planet is covered by oceans, we don't have all that many underwater earthquake sensors. Though there's plenty of seismic activity that happens out in the middle of the ocean, most detection equipment is located on land, with the exception of a few offshore sensor projects in Japan, the U.S., and Canada.

To get better earthquake data for tremors and quakes that happen far from existing sensors, a group of scientists in the UK, Italy, and Malta suggest turning to the internet. As Science News reports, the fiber-optic cables already laid down to carry communication between continents could be repurposed as seismic sensors with the help of lasers.

The new study, detailed in a recent issue of Science, proposes beaming a laser into one end of the optical fiber, then measuring how that light changes. When the cable is disturbed by seismic shaking, the light will change.

This method, which the researchers tested during earthquakes in Italy, New Zealand, Japan, and Mexico, would allow scientists to use data from multiple undersea cables to both detect and measure earthquake activity, including pinpointing the epicenter and estimating the magnitude. They were able to sense quakes in New Zealand and Japan from a land-based fiber-optic cable in England, and measure an earthquake in the Malta Sea from an undersea cable running between Malta and Sicily that was located more than 50 miles away from the epicenter.

A map of the world's undersea cable connections with a diagram of how lasers can measure their movement
Marra et al., Science (2018)

Seismic sensors installed on the sea floor are expensive, but they can save lives: During the deadly Japanese earthquake in 2011, the country's extensive early-warning system, including underwater sensors, was able to alert people in Tokyo of the quake 90 seconds before the shaking started.

Using existing cable links that run across the ocean floor would allow scientists to collect data on earthquakes that start in the middle of the ocean that are too weak to register on land-based seismic sensors. The fact that hundreds of thousands of miles of these cables already crisscross the globe makes this method far, far cheaper to implement than installing brand-new seismic sensors at the bottom of the ocean, giving scientists potential access to data on earthquake activity throughout the world, rather than only from the select places that already have offshore sensors installed.

The researchers haven't yet studied how the laser method works on the long fiber-optic cables that run between continents, so it's not ready for the big leagues yet. But eventually, it could help bolster tsunami detection, monitor earthquakes in remote areas like the Arctic, and more.

[h/t Science News]

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How Much Smartphone Use Is Too Much?
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Since the iPhone debuted in 2007, ushering in the age of the phone-as-computer, smartphone use has exploded worldwide, with an estimated 2.3 billion users last year. According to a 2016 Pew Research survey, 77 percent of Americans own a smartphone, and other recent stats have found that users are on their phones an average of more than five hours per day—almost double the rate in 2013. More people now use a mobile device to get online than they do a computer. This is especially true in regions where people may not be able to afford a personal computer but can buy a smartphone.

We love our smartphones perhaps a little too much, and the desire to unplug is growing among people who see 24/7 connectedness as damaging to their mental health. This week, Apple announced new iPhone features meant to curb our dependence on our devices, including a weekly "Report" app that shows your phone and app usage, as well as how many times you physically pick up your phone. (One small study by the consumer research firm Dscout found that we touch our phones more than 2600 times a day.) You can also set customized limits for overall phone usage with the "Screen Time" app.

Many of us feel anxiety at the very thought of being without their phone and the access it offers to the internet. Researchers have a term for it: nomophobia ("no mobile phone phobia"). So how much smartphone use is too much?

That turns out to be a surprisingly difficult question to answer. "Smartphone addiction" isn't an official medical diagnosis. Even the experts haven't decided how much is too much—or even whether smartphone addiction is real.

DEFINING ADDICTION

To understand what's going on, we have to first step back and define what addiction is. It's different from habits, which are subconsciously performed routines, and dependence, when repeated use of something causes withdrawals when you stop. You can be dependent on something without it ruining your life. Addiction is a mental disorder characterized by compulsive consumption despite serious adverse consequences.

Yet, our understanding of behavioral addictions—especially ones that don't involve ingesting mind-altering chemicals—is still evolving. Actions that result in psychological rewards, such as a crushing a castle in Clash Royale or getting a new ping from Instagram, can turn compulsive as our brains rewire to seek that payoff (just like our smartphones, our brains use electricity to operate, and circuits of neurons can restructure to skew toward rewards). For a minority of people, it seems those compulsions can turn to addictions.

Psychologists have been treating internet addiction for almost as long as the internet has been around: Kimberly Young, a clinical psychologist and program director at St. Bonaventure University, founded the Center for Internet Addiction back in 1995. By 2013, addictive behavior connected to personal technology was common enough that in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V), the bible for mental disorder diagnoses, the American Psychiatric Association included "internet gaming disorder" as a condition "warranting further study." These days, thanks to an abundance of horror stories involving people who were glued to the internet until they died—and living gamers who are so engrossed in their games that they ignore paramedics removing dead gamers—internet rehabs are popping up all over the world.

But in virtually all of the medical literature published so far about internet addiction—including the WHO's forthcoming 11th edition of International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11), whose "excessive use of the internet" is built around how much gaming interferes with daily life—there's no mention of smartphones.

According to Marc Potenza, a professor of psychiatry and neuroscience at the Yale School of Medicine, there's a reason for these omissions: Despite the official definitions included in the DSM-V and ICD-11, "there's debate regarding the use of those terms [internet addiction]. Both the ICD-11 group and the DSM-V group chose to focus on the behavior rather than the delivery device."

So while you may feel nomophobia when you can't find your internet "delivery device," the global psychiatric community thinks it's the internet itself that's the problem—not the phone in your hand.

THE REWARDS THAT COME FROM OUR PHONES

We are getting something from our phones, though, and it's not just access to the internet. Receiving a notification gives us a small dopamine burst, and we learn to associate that dose of pleasure with the smartphone. You may pull your phone from your pocket a dozen times an hour to check for notifications—even if you know they're not there because your phone would have, well, notified you.

It's not unusual for people to become attached to an action (checking the phone) rather than its reward (getting a notification). Sometimes smokers trying to quit feel the urge to chew or bite and need to replace cigarettes with gum or sunflower seeds. According to Stephanie Borgland, a neuroscientist and associate professor at University of Calgary, this is called a Pavlovian-instrumental transfer—a reference to Ivan Pavlov's experiments, in which he reinforced behavior in dogs through signals and rewards. Borgland tells Mental Floss that we can become compulsively attached to the cues of phone use. We cling to the physical stimuli our brains have linked to the reward.

There may be an evolutionary basis to this behavior. Like other primates, humans are social mammals, but we have dramatically higher levels of dopamine than our cousins. This neurotransmitter is associated with reward-motivated behavior. So when we get a notification on an app that tells us someone has engaged us in social interaction—which we naturally crave—it triggers our natural inclinations.

HOW TO CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM (FOR YOUR PHONE)

The global psychiatric community may not be convinced our smartphones are a problem, and no one has died from checking Snapchat too often—or at least it hasn't been reported. But most of us would say that spending five hours a day on our smartphones is too much. So are there any guidelines?

At this stage of research into smartphone use, there are no specific time-limit recommendations, though some researchers are working on a smartphone addiction scale; one was proposed in a 2013 study in the journal PLOS One. Based on what's said to be coming out in the ICD-11, here's one simple guideline: Problematic smartphone use negatively interferes with your life. Some research suggests Facebook, Instagram, and even online gaming make us feel more isolated and less connected. The more we try to fill that hole by tapping away at our phones, the more we crave social interaction. "There are a number of factors that have been associated with these behaviors or conditions," says Potenza, who is developing tools to screen for and assess problematic internet use and has consulted with the WHO on these issues. "And arguably one of the most consistent ones is depression."

One way to assess whether your smartphone is a problem is noting how you react when you're cut off from it, according to the PLOS One study. The study proposed a "smartphone addiction scale" based on negative responses to being without a smartphone, among other criteria. What happens on a day when you accidentally leave it at home? Are you irritable or anxious? Do you feel isolated from friends or unsafe? Do you have trouble concentrating on work, school, or other important responsibilities, whether or not you have your phone?

While smartphones may not be truly addictive in a medical sense, learning how to use them in a more mindful, healthy manner couldn't hurt. Test yourself for nomophobia [PDF]—knowing how much time you spend online is the first step to identifying how that can be problematic. Block distracting sites or track usage via a timer or an app (beware third-party apps' privacy settings, however). Delete the apps that keep the phone in your hand even when you're not online, like games. If you're still struggling, you could ditch smartphones altogether and downgrade to a "dumb" phone or get a Light Phone, a cellular device "designed to be used as little as possible."

A recent WIRED feature argued that using the internet five hours per day isn't a personal failing so much as a reflection of the way many apps are purposely designed to keep you salivating for more. So perhaps the best measure is to leave your phone behind once in a while. Schedule a screen-free Sunday. Go for a walk in the woods. Meditate. Socialize instead of binging The Office again. Don’t worry—you’ll be fine.

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