Geomagnetic Planetary Hard-Drive

February 28th, 2006 | researchmaterial

Geoff Manaugh is a mad genius:

… it occurred to me that if the U-Bahn system could somehow be hooked up to massive, earth-anchored magnets, and made, therefore, to produce a magnetic field of its own, that you could transform all of Berlin into a geomagnetic harddrive.

As a sail traps the wind, a planetary harddrive would use geomagnetism.

Provided constant motion on behalf of the trains, I thought, and given absolutely gigantic magnets of the right polarity and location, Berlin could start producing its own magnetic field – which meant that any city with a subway could be transformed into a harddrive. Harddrive London. Harddrive Beijing. Harddrive Moscow.

Of course, it’s obvious even to me that you’d have to do quite a lot more than just bury some magnets underground in order to transform a city into a harddrive – you’d need a shovel, for instance, and perhaps some strong anti-manic drugs; but my point is that if Christopher Wren could build a tower that simultaneously memorialized the Great Fire of London even as it acted as a scientific device, then perhaps you could turn urban infrastructure itself into a kind of working scientific apparatus.

You could turn all of Berlin into a geomagnetic harddrive….

(Thanks to Matt Jones)

Teresa Meza

February 28th, 2006 | photography

Another shot I keep forgetting to share, by Teresa Meza. So beautifully sleazy.

Jesustown, FL

February 28th, 2006 | researchmaterial

A former marine who was raised by nuns and made a fortune selling pizza has embarked on a £230m plan to build the first town in America to be run according to strict Catholic principles.

Abortions, pornography and contraceptives will be banned in the new Florida town of Ave Maria, which has begun to take shape on former vegetable farms 90 miles northwest of Miami.

Tom Monaghan, the founder of the Domino’s Pizza chain, has stirred protests from civil rights activists by declaring that Ave Maria’s pharmacies will not be allowed to sell condoms or birth control pills. The town’s cable television network will carry no X-rated channels.

The town will be centred around a 100ft tall oratory and the first Catholic university to be built in America for 40 years. The university’s president, Nicholas J Healy, has said future students should “help rebuild the city of God” in a country suffering from “catastrophic cultural collapse”.

Yet civil rights activists and other watchdogs concerned about the separation of church and state are threatening lawsuits if Ave Maria attempts to enforce Catholic dogma. Environmentalists have also complained the town will restrict the habitat of the Florida panther, an endangered species. Asked recently about possible lawsuits in Florida, Monaghan replied: “That’s great. That would be the best publicity we could get.”

Monaghan, 68, sold his takeaway chain in 1998 for an estimated $1 billion…

(Found by Garrett Dwyer, thanks)

Milking The Cow

February 28th, 2006 | researchmaterial

32 seconds of deeply alien, peculiar video art by Tanja Puustelli: “A screen printed video work featuring a pornographic loop of a fellatio scene, accompanied with the sound of a cow being milked into a metal bucket in sync with the movement of the image.”>

Xvid avi, QT mov.

The Hasn’t Been Weekly In A While Katie West

February 28th, 2006 | people I know, photography is still coming soon, apparently.

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