It's a grey day today, perfect for my afternoon plans - holing up with a bunch of friends for pen and paper exploits and food - but before I deal with bags of dice and disconsolate dragons here are a few of the fruits of this week's reading.
These are not the Sunday Papers:
How octopuses control and move their soft bodies is of interest to engineers who aim to design biologically inspired robots.
"People want to build soft robots for medical purposes and rescue operations," said Dr Guy Levy, one of the researchers involved in the project.
Such soft-bodied, octopus-inspired arms would not be limited by fixed joints, he explained. This could be useful to access narrow, difficult to reach spaces - perhaps getting help to people trapped at the scene of a collapsed building.
The online media industry makes real money. It's now possible to find a career in this industry, rather than just a fleeting job. An organized work force is part of growing up. I fully expect that Gawker Media will emerge from this experience stronger than it has ever been.
“I believe she been brainwashed,” Mohammed said, when first asked about his youngest daughter. “She’s not that kind of girl. They brainwashed her.”
“Everyone’s parents or family members says that about those who have come here,” Hoda said of her father’s accusation. “To that I say, ‘Fear Allah, fear Allah with what you accuse us of.’”
Amy Merrick in the New Yorker writes about Designing For Disability - there's not a big change to document here, but it's a good piece for pointing out fashion's reticence when it comes to bodies which don't fit the industry's "aspirational" model, the demand for better designs - form tends to get forgotten in the face of function - and the psychological impact such designs could have.
Many of [Alicia Contreras' clients learning how to use canes] have foregone traditional canes and have turned instead to hiking sticks. Unlike a cane, a hiking stick lends the impression of vigorousness, as if the person carrying it to the grocery store is merely warming up for a weekend trek. “They were proud of them,” Contreras said. “They felt like, ‘I am active, I am safe.’”