Trivial Posts #9: Parasites, Giant Robots, Editors, And The Doctor

This week’s Trivial Posts is a bit more ‘things to make you think’ rather that ‘wow!’ this week, but it’s still fitting the simple mission of bringing you a collection of interesting posts, ideas, video clips, essays, images, and anything else that catches my eye online.

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The scientist who grew larva in his body

When you are a scientist exploring the rainforest, and you forget your anti-insect cream one day, what are you to do when the parasites attacked? If you are Piotr Naskrecki, you decide to let the blighters grow under your skin before capturing them as they burrow out and get ready to pupate. Fascinating, icky, and nature, all in one. And he knows his SEO loading headline strategy as well.

Puppy-killing scientist smuggles rainforest babies in body cavity

I held his hand as he drank the fatal dose

I’m going to simply quote the summary text for Liesl Graz’ piece on her husband’s assisted suicide, and hope for as much dignity when the time comes in my life, no matter what side of the relationship I am on. “Liesl Graz’s husband, Gerard, wanted to die with professional help and not face a slow, painful decline. She recalls their last days together – and the moment it happened”

The day my husband chose to die

“We either sit and wait, or we take these flare guns and do something really stupid.”

Trivial Posts isn’t always about posts made in the last week (although most of the time it is), it’s about also about fun stuff I find in the week. And a look back at Guillermo Del Toro’s ‘Pacific Rim‘ is always worth another look.

How the pre-apocalyptic epic rescued the helmer in his darkest hour

The Manchester Guardian needs as Editor

The Guardian occupies a very interesting space as a publisher – all very liberal, always on the right side of truth and justice, and rarely making any money. As long-standing editor Alan Rusbridger steps down (to run the parent company, so no chance of ongoing interference there!) Michael Wolff profiles the vacancy for GQ.

The Poisoned Chalice

Prohibition never tasted so good

Whenever I travel to the US for anything more than a forty-eight hour stopover, I pop a kilogram of Dairy Milk chocolate in the bottom of my suitcase. I joke with the US Customs that it’s for ‘hormonal reasons’ but with the recent crackdown by the Hershey Chocolate Company on Cadbury’ chocolate being imported from the UK for sale in the US, I wonder if that will still be okay.

Fans stockpile sweets

The man who gave the world portable power

The transistor may have shaped the 20th century, but it was the lithium-ion battery that allowed us to take them everywhere and anywhere. For that, thank John Bannister Goodenough, profiled in Quartz.And the inventor isn’t finished yet.

Lithium-Ion, mark 2.

This Week’s Long Read: All of time and all of space

I was wondering what would be the long-form read this week, and then right at the death, the final entry in Philip Sandifer’s ‘Tardis Erudtorum’ series of posts looking at the history of Doctor Who was posted. It’s not just a long read, it’s a comprehensive document of one man’s exploration of a fifty year old television show. At a paragraph shy of 100,000 words, settle in to one man’s exploration of another man.

A Mild Curiosity in a Junkyard.

What Have I Been Up To?

My post on how Tim Cook neutered Steve Jobs’ threat of ‘thermonuclear war’ against a number of players in the Android ecosystem has proven to be a popular read (especially as Cook did finish the job, but in his own supply-chain focussed way). And of course it’s the season for countries to select their songs for the Eurovision Song Contest, so as well as the Trivial Posts newsletter, I’ll draw your attention to the weekly Eurovision newsletter from the ESC Insight team.

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