Webtacular World Issue # 207, November 19, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators! Trump update (because he really isn’t worth talking about this week) – currently Twitter feuding with unworthy famous person about whether or not Trump should have left American citizens in Chinese jail. I’m really writing this more for myself, so that when I’m old, and assuming the Internet is still around and I’ve kept my payments for hosting this domain name current, I will be able to see what sort of nonsense I lived though. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Zimbabwhat?
Why: Because Africa’s longest reigning ruler, Robert Mugabe, was forced to step down from power. At this point, he still has not resigned. There is a lot to unpack here, and you should probably start with the history of Mugabe.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Entrepreneur Is French Because It’s Fancy
Why: Because I have lots of friends who are entrepreneurs. Many of them are not from wealthy backgrounds, and have still managed to do amazing things. However, it is still interesting to think about where the access to capital came from, and the way in which that access was granted. Related.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Ajit Pai-l Of Garbage
Why: Because Ajit Pai is an asshat and has personally made my colleagues’ jobs more difficult in the attempt to bring parity to the communication potentials of the United States. This is aside from his recent role in ignoring the growth of monopolies within the communications industry, and his direct involvement with the destruction of the existence of an open Internet. Again, while you all still have access to this content, Ajit Pai is a bad person, and deserves to have bad things happen to him. Being the world we live in, he will probably end up receiving a multi-million dollar salary at one of these companies or being hired as a lobbyist.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Moar Tesla Pls
Why: Because the truck is the thing that will actually change the world, but the new Roadster looks pretty sweet, too. Because nothing is perfect, you should also probably be aware of the problems that exist within the company.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Italy Blows It
Why: Because the US is not the only bad soccer team who didn’t make the World Cup.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Super Heroes!
Why: Because super heroes are fun, and so are lists. The new Justice League is not one of those best.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: The Return And Untimely Fall Of Rap Rock
Why: Because between the initial publication of this story and now, one of the artist widely mentioned in the article, Lil Peep, passed away due to a drug overdose.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Back To Basics
Why: Because writing a good cookbook is hard. Here’s why salt, fat, acid and heat are the only things you need to make food taste good.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Pew Pew
Why: Because EA managed to make a good Star Wars game bad by ruining the reason why people play games. It is a gorgeous game with good mechanics that utterly fails to give people a reason to keep playing it. The company now owns the most downvoted post in Reddit history, which is all sorts of nuts considering what else has happened this year.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Our Drone Future; Our Robot Future; Our Future
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Save America
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Advertisements

Webtacular World Issue # 206, November 12, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators! Well, it’s been one year since America collectively decided that it was OK for a man with the temperament of a toddler to be President. Specifically, people like this. In a certain rebuke to this choice, the current midterm elections lead to the election of many people who represent the polar opposite of ideals. Not because they are Democrats, necessarily, but because a transgendered person won against a homophobe, a refugee won in Montana, and many people of different backgrounds won for the first time. This is good. This is progress. I can only hope that these individuals live up to their promise, and that voters do not forget the madness that we are currently living through. Or, we could collectively forget / continue to be awful and vote a politically disgraced pedophile into the Senate. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: What’s The Deal With White People And Torches?
Why: Because Poland hosted 60,000 shitheads to call for a Muslim Holocaust. For a country that helped host the Holocaust 70 years ago, that is a truly disgusting sentiment.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: $1.5 Trillion Short Term Memory
Why: Because remember how Republicans constantly threatened to shut down the government and cause financial havoc over the debt ceiling? Apparently they don’t.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: 280 Characters!
Why: Because Twitter is dumb.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Sports And The Military
Why: Because Steph Curry apparently writes well, too.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Thor Is Good
Why: Because of Jeff Goldblum, obviously.

TELEVISION THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: The Continued Fallout
Why: Because men in [insert industry here] are shitty.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: How To Not Win An Award
Why: Because busking outside of an awards show is probably the most real country thing a performer could do. Good job, Sturgill.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Escape To The Stars
Why: Because science fiction continues to feature more diversity than ever. I highly suggest the Binti series for a really quick but interesting take on Afro-futurism.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Mosaic; May The Force Be With You Forever; Whoops
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: More Better Politicians. The bar is really not that high. We can do better than pedophiles.
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 205, November 5, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators. Somehow things just keep getting more awful. I’m sorry that the world isn’t full of puppies and rainbows, or puppy rainbows, because that is infinitely better than the reality we have to face on a daily basis. This week, we learned you can only politicizes certain kinds of violence, but not others (violence against politicians remains a currently unknown, but we will probably find out more soon), the Trump Train continues to lose its engineers, our brightest stars are lecherous pedophiles, and terrible pizza gets political in the stupidest kind of way. At least the Dodgers lost the World Series. Also, remember to set your clocks back. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Mass Killings
Why: This week, many people were killed in different ways in the United States. Eight people were killed by troubled man who decided to mow down people with a truck on HalloweenToday, almost 50 people were shot by a troubled man while attending church servicesFinally, three people were shot to death in a Walmart by a troubled man in Denver – I almost forgot about that one.
In terms of responses, our President offered furious vengeance against immigrants for the first one – never mind that Uzbekistan is not in the Middle East, nor is part of the current list of banned countries. For the second, I cannot tell if people are being ironic when they are offering “thoughts and prayers” to people who were killed in the middle of praying, but if it didn’t work in the middle of their massacre, it sure as hell wont do any good after. And the third, like I said, I already forgot that one happened. It really is hard to keep track of them all – and when you’re comparing 3 to 50, it just isn’t memorable.
I am sad. I am furious. I am exhausted. It goes without saying that this should not happen, and yet it continues. Each one of these acts of heinous violence against people commuting from work, worshiping, and shopping was caused by a “troubled man.” The running theme seems to be that when men fail, they are so afraid to face their own shortcomings that they take their cowardice and weaponize it to destroy others. Like every previous time this has happened, the only answers I have are not politically feasible. So I will continue to sit here, sad; furious; exhausted.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The World’s Wealth
Why: Because a clearer picture of the corruption of wealth has never been produced. There is no greater example of this corruption then when a Queen, whose position is fully funded by the tax paying populous, then avoids paying taxes on that wealth by setting up accounts in a tax shelter. Funny, because the way our government is talking, it seems as though these poor wealthy folk have too many taxes!

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Russian Ties
Why: Because Mueller officially charged Manafort, Gates, and Papadopoulos (that’s a fun name to say out loud) in the actions regarding Russian influence on the election.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: The X Factor
Why: Because two technology companies came out with new “x”es – Apple with the iPhone X, and Microsoft with the Xbox One X. The second one needs a few more “x”es, I think.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: The Astros Win
Why: Because as a Giants fan, this made me happy.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Falling Stars
Why: Because Kevin Spacey is a serial abuser. He will be far from the only person who will no longer have a job after this is all said and done.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Somber Musings
Why: Because sometimes sad pop gospel is the right sound for the mood you’re in.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Overwrought Problems Of Rich People
Why: Because Salman Rushdie’s latest is escapism for people who like flowery language and happen to inherit Manhattan brownstones.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: A Return To Beginnings
Why: Because Call of Duty went back to World War II in the latest iteration of war games.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What:  Car Climb; Poop Face; Haka
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: A Cayman Bank Account
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 204, October 29, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators! I hope everyone had a safe and spooky Halloween. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The First
Why: Because the first charge in the investigation of Russian interference in the election will be announced on Monday. This is one week following the delivery of Jeff Flake’s speech against Trump.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: How Not To Rebuild
Why: Because Puerto Rico just canceled this highly suspect deal due to connections with Ryan Zinke, the current Interior Secretary under Trump.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: The March Towards The Dismantling Of Rights
Why: Because the lengths the government went to in order to attempt to deny a person their right over their body , while at the same time highlighting the multiple problems with the treatment of immigrant detainees.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Just Letting Myself In
Why: Because it isn’t good enough that Amazon already listens to everything you do, now they want to physically be there as well.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: 58 Runs And Counting
Why: Because this has been the best baseball to watch in a long time. And I’m not just saying that because the Dodgers are losing (sorry!).

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: How To Not Be Yourself
Why: Because Andy Serkis is best known for playing characters that he could never actually be.

TELEVISION THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Even Stranger Things
Why: Because Stranger Things was back. I’m assuming everyone already binge watched over the weekend.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Take A Plunge
Why: Because Fever Ray (one half of The Knife) just came out with her first new album in 8 years. Or, if you want lighter, nerdier pop, Weezer released a perfectly OK new album as well.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: A Good List Of Books
Why: Because these are the books that you will probably never get around to reading, even though you probably should.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Pick your Poison
Why: Because three very well reviewed games were released on Friday. If you want to kill Nazis, play Wolfenstein 2. If you want to explore ancient Egypt, play Assassins Creed: Origins. Finally, if you want to play one of the most creative and endearing takes on one of the most beloved games franchises ever, play Super Mario Odyssey.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: David S. Pumpkins Forever; Doing Halloween Right; Eat Your Art
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Furniture For My Cat
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 203, October 22, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators! The best thing about this week was that it had the lowest amount of Trump driven news in a while. Sure, I guess he disrespected yet another military family, regarding the death of a soldier in Niger (why US forces were killed in Niger [which is here] is a country US soldiers really have no business being killed in, and is a whole different problem that will probably not be answered any time soon). This is especially strange considering he just finished spending a few weeks yelling at the NFL about disrespecting the military and proposing mandatory flag worship to show respect, but whatever. The man obviously contains multitudes. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Remembering What Presidential Means
Why: Because while our current version went golfing, (definitely for his 31st time, and likely for his 59th), our five living past presidents got together to do a fundraiser for all of the US’ hurricane victims.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Economics 101
Why: Because theoretically, people should be willing to pay whatever the price the market will bear for a given product. In the real world, people will riot.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Do The Math
Why: Because I realize that a bunch of lawyers went to law school because they hated math, but it is not an excuse not to utilize quantitative data where it is available.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Power Of #
Why: Because the #MeToo movement has been one of the most powerful ways for women to explicitly communicate just how widespread sexual harassment is. It is an extremely brave thing to do. The absolutely insane part is that there are apologists who just do not get it. For my own part, I am sorry, I support you, and I will do better.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Sports Day
Why: Because all the sports were on the television. Sadly, the Dodgers are going to the World Series.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (39 min. listen)
What: Rare Feeling
Why: Because I know that I already posted about Twain a few weeks ago, but Mt.’s album just came out, and I’ve been letting it take me to another place on continuous repeat. This is essential music.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: A Return To Daemons
Why: Because I spent the last few weeks re-reading His Dark Materials in preparation for the release of The Book of Dust, Phillip Pullman’s followup trilogy. Revisiting these as an adult has given me a much greater appreciation to the themes of free will and spirituality that are presented in the first novels, and I’m glad that someone is still speaking to children in such a direct manner.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: A Walk Through South Park
Why: Because the kids of South Park are still in 4th grade, even though the rest of us have grown up.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Only The Best; More Twain; HA-HA, Nelson’s A Girl!
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Vinyl Rare Feeling
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 202, October 15, 2017

 

Greetings Webtaculators. We just can’t catch a break this year, can we? As most of you are aware, the areas of Sonoma and Napa Counties in California are engulfed in flames. I grew up in the county immediately south of Sonoma and Napa, and currently live close by in the East Bay. The national news coverage has mostly focused on the “wine country” aspect of this disaster, but Napa and Sonoma, especially the parts that were hit hardest, consist of working class homes, schools, and communities. I have many friends and colleagues who no longer have homes, because they burned to the ground. I have been living in a surreal haze for the past week, coming home every day under a setting blood red sun due to the smoke saturated sky.  If you can help, please feel free to donate here. If you’re reading this and have been affected by the fires and need help, please feel free to reach out. I will gladly bring meals, donate necessities, or help out in any way I can. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Tubbs Fire
Why: Because this is what global warming looks like – unprecedented floods and fires.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Destabilizing The Health Market For Fun
Why: Because Trump is opening up the healthcare market to low-premium policies. While this sounds good in theory (I’m healthy! Why should I pay a lot of money for something I don’t need?), it really means that when, let’s say you, I don’t know, have a freak brain issue that sends you to the emergency room and requires multiple visits to specialists, multiple MRIs, a spinal tap, and plenty of drugs, you can bet that your cheap coverage will not pay for most of it. Have fun in forever debt. Oh – that’s not even mentioning people with pre-existing conditions – but you don’t have to worry about them, because they will be dead. In other health related news, Republican Senators teamed up with drug companies to kill Americans with opioids. If I sound angry, that’s because I am.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (Long read)
What: The Case Against Trump
Why: Because the Brookings Institute compiled 100+ pages of information regarding what is currently known about Trump’s potential obstruction of justice.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: VR Round 2
Why: Because people hate wires (see phones without wires).

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: I Believe That We Will… Oh. Shit. Nevermind.
Why: Because America is definitely far from #1 in the only sport that the entire world seems to agree is the most important sport. Here’s who you should root for in the World Cup instead.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Good
Why: Because the fallout from Harvey Weinstein’s sexual harassment is only just beginning.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. watch)
What: Protest Song
Why: Because Marshall Mathers spits hot fire. For something non-political, check out the new St. Vincent or Beck. Both are very good escapes.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. look)
What: What The Apocalypse Looks Like
Why: Because the fires are still not under control.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. look)
What: Good Books
Why: Because the National Book Awards people know a good book when they read one.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Ethics Of Orc Murder
Why: Because the new Lord of the Rings game is really fun, aside from the troubling premise that your character enslaves members of a fictional race for the purpose of making them kill each other for your entertainment and profit. Or you can just spend your time killing Kumail Nanjiani.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Line Of The Mountain KingTake On Me; Walk Off
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Rain
Why: Because The North Bay deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 201, October 8, 2017

Greetings Webtaculators. This week was bad. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Stop. Shooting. People.
Why: Because last weekend, as I was finishing up the previous edition of Webtacular World, I saw a tweet about a potential shooter in Las Vegas. I did not go to bed until around 3AM, and am not even sure how much I actually slept. I was too busy trying to make sense of the fact that a cowardly, wealthy white man decided to amass an arsenal and then unload hundreds of rounds into a concert. Over the following days, and after the first deluge of misinformation, I felt a continued numbness for a country that still widely thinks that someone’s ability to own weapons capable of such destruction are somehow paramount to their freedom. But I’ve already been through my thoughts on this before. So let’s just look on the bright side, right? Hey, at least mass shootings are profitable. Who cares that our country has a deep sickness regarding our actual care for each other? We should just roll over, give up, and accept these sort of things as the new normal, after we tweet our “warmest condolences,” of course. Nothing can be done to fix this, don’t politicize this, but still go to Vegas and party and drink and gamble and shoot your fears away. Everything will be just fine.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Do Not Pass Go, Equifax
Why: Because the Monopoly Man is the best thing to happen to protesting in a while.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The Kennedy Question
Why: Because a lot of the way our future elections will be determined will be based on this gerrymandering case.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Get Your Politics Out Of My Sports
Why: Because this administration is full of stupid children. Pence wasted $250,000 of taxpayer money for this bullshit.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: A Movie Titan’s Downfall
Why: Because much like the shooting, I am no longer surprised by the behavior of “powerful” men.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: RIP Tom
Why: Because I am lucky that I was able to see Tom Petty perform multiple times. He was truly one of the greats.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Scary Book Covers For Scary Times
Why: Because all of the art in Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark is terrifying.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Pay To Win
Why: Because a number of modern games are relying on people buying in game items in a gambling-type fashion in order to make their character perform better.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Fan 1, Dude 0; Hot Wings 1, Terry Crews 0; Goose 1, Farmer 0; Rick And Morty 1, Customers, 0.
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Future Jacket
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™