Webtacular World Issue # 288, June 9, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators! With all the craziness in the world, one of the few things that I have been able to do to feel somewhat grounded is help people around me.  This weekend, I helped run Ribs for Kids, a BBQ competition event put on by my local chapter of Active 20-30 in order to support local underprivileged children. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by everything else as well, donating your time and effort to local issues is one way to feel like you can actually make an impact.  On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Why Is There Gay Pride?
Why: Because things like this, this, and this are continuously happening in today’s world.  These are not problems straight people have. At least some groups are trying to admit and apologize for their past bigotry.

WORLD STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: One Out Of Seven
Why: Because over a million people Hong Kong took to the streets to protest a bill that would allow suspected criminals to be extradited to China for trial.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Explosive M&A
Why: Because companies that build things to kill people probably should not be joining together.

NEWS NEWS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Why Unions Work
Why: Because employees at Vox Media,  a news conglomerate that I rely on quite frequently, recently walked off the job in order to secure favorable terms in from their employers. It worked.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Meet Your New Heroes
Why: Because the Women’s World Cup is great soccer. It is amazing what these players have to go through to play, especially compared to their male counterparts.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Dark Phoenix Not Doing What It’s Namesake Says It Does
Why: Because the last X-Men movie made before Fox was sold to Disney is not good. Here’s why.

THEATER THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: The Tonys
Why: Because Hadestown won for best musical, and The Ferryman won for best new play. I need to go to more shows.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: RIP Dr. John
Why: Because one of the premier voices of New Orleans music passed away this week.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The Fall Of The Internet
Why: Because when one of the foremost writers of the cyber punk genre understands that the promise of the internet doesn’t hold up weaponized bad information.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (long watch)
What: E3
Why: Because Microsoft came out very strong on the first day of the conference by announcing a new console and a reasonably priced subscription bundle.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Why Theater Is Good; How To Draw A Stick Figure; People Love Keanu Reeves 
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: A fast forward through the next couple of weeks so I can go watch the World Cup.
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

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

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Webtacular World Issue # 287, June 2, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators. Everything Is Fine. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Mueller Says The Same Thing, On Television
Why: Because America is full of idiots who do not believe something happened unless it is told to them by a person on television. It does not help that Mueller uses big words and language that requires inference and basic logic to determine its meaning (“[i]f we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so,”) so it is unlikely that his repeating his findings will change anyone’s mind at this point.

INTERNATIONAL STORY OF THE WEEK (7 min. read)
What: Back To The Drawing Board
Why: Because Netanyahu failed to form a new government after his recent election.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: How Not To Advertise
Why: Because North Face, a company that usually does good, decided the best way to advertise its message was by taking advantage of a non-profit. Not a great look.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: The Quacking Waddling Thing With Wings Does Turn Out In Fact To Be A Duck
Why: Because it turns out that the change to the 2020 census regarding the addition of citizenship status was included specifically to deter immigrants from being counted in the US census in order to help Republicans.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (long reads)
What: Liverpool Does It
Why: Because Liverpool F.C. won the Champions League for the first time in 14 years.  Speaking of international football, let’s just say there are some problems with the amount of money in the league.  If you think this only applies to European sports, you might want to take a look at the meltdown that the Lakers had in its front offices.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Maybe Rom Coms Aren’t Terrible?
Why: Because Always Be My Maybe is legitimately funny and sweet, and has one of the best uses of a celebrity cameo I have seen in a very long time.

TELEVISION THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Good Good Omens
Why: Because Good Omens, based on the Neil Gaiman / Terry Pratchett novel of the same name, is a very enjoyable 6 episode palate cleanser from GoT.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: byeTunes
Why: Because assuming reports are correct, iTunes is no longer the one stop location for all of your Apple apps, music, and movies.

ART THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Maybe Not The World’s Most Expensive Painting
Why: Because it is entirely possible that Salvator Mundi was not actually painted by da Vinci.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: What Libraries Are Good For
Why: Because libraries still have the ability to organize information better than the Internet can.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. watch)
What: Fewer Walls More Bridges
Why: Because Hideo Kojima, one of video game’s most well known auteurs, released an 8 minute trailer for his new game, Death Stranding.   If you’re wondering why a video game needs an 8 minute trailer, lets just say it covers babies with psychic powers, ghost demons, WW1, Guillermo Del Toro, a character named Die Hardman, and fire demon terminators.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: If This Is Real, Humans Deserve Nothing; “I Had Nothing To Do With Russia Helping Me To Get Elected”;
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Ferrari SF90 Stradale (It’s Ok, It’s A Hybrid)
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

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

Webtacular World Issue # 286, May 27, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators! I hope everyone had an enjoyable Memorial Day weekend.  I’m pretty sure most of Northern California missed the memo that it’s supposed to be time for hanging out outside while BBQing, since it is still raining / snowing even though it is light until 8:30pm, but oh well.  It would also be nice if our own Armed Forces celebrated the holiday correctly, but apparently they care more about dead soldiers than the ones served their time and lived to tell about it. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3  min. read)
What: Brexiters Brexiting
Why: Because Theresa May is a failure.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Decisions Decisions
Why: Because do you really think anyone knows the difference between all of the different hair care products on store shelves? Now take away your ability to test their smell, add a couple more thousand choices, and that’s what online shopping is for essentially every category of product.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Slow March To Taxes
Why: Because the US will eventually see Trumps tax returns.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: New Way To Weigh
Why: Because there is a new kilogram in town, and it’s ready to be a constant companion to people looking to figure out mass.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: That’s Not A T-Shirt Cannon, THIS is T-Shirt Cannon
Why: Because even though the Bucks are out, they still figured out a way to give T-shirts to the masses in the nose bleeds.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (medium read / watch)
What: The Early Nineties Are Coming Back To Take Our Money
Why: Because there is a new Aladdin, a new Star Trek: Next Generation, and a new Terminator. If you want something new, check out these flicks from the Cannes Film Festival when they inevitably end up on Netflix.

TELEVISION THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Lonely Island Throws A Bash
Why: Because The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience is one of the most surreal things put on film I have ever seen. Easily worth a half an hour of your time.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (long read / listen)
What: Every Song Of The Summers
Why: Because NPR made a playlist of 56 years of songs that represent what got people dancing during the longest days of the year.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read / look)
What: The Story Behind The Pictures
Why: Because nature doesn’t even need to try to look good in pictures.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read)
What: Kids Don’t Read Books
Why: Because there is no need to use a physical version of something that you can get access to whenever you want on your computer or phone.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Crank It
Why: Because the new Playdate, besides being developed for by many renowned developers, has a crank, and is adorable.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: I Don’t Dance I Work; Uniform On; The Only Genie You Need
Why: Because Internet.

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

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

Webtacular World Issue # 285, May 19, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators. The final season of Game of Thrones is the appropriate show for our current times.  What began as a true revolutionary show during the Obama years winds up barely being able to perform basic story telling. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Alabama Hates Its Citizens
Why: Because someone who rapes a woman and causes a pregnancy now has a lighter potential jail sentence than if that person who was raped decides to abort their pregnancy.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Get Huawei From Here
Why: Because the Republicans and Trump continue to demonstrate that they definitely do not believe in or want a free market. Which is fine, but not if their constituents don’t understand that they are continuously being lied to.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Stare Indecisis
Why: One of the most important underpinnings of our judicial system, that precedent be taken seriously, is being thrown out of the window by Conservative judges.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Not Living Up To Its Promise
Why: Because as the world of technology fails to live up to its promise (see a running theme yet?), there are parts of our tech forward lives are in some ways still OK. It’s also good when we realize just how pervasive it can be, and as a society, decide that we don’t need it.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Make That Paper
Why: Because “student”-athletes might actually be able to be partially paid for their talents.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: John Wick 3 – The Wickiest
Why: Because what started out as a movie about a guy who was mad at the people who hurt his dog has turned into one of the best action franchises.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. read combined)
What: How Are You Feeling?
Why: Want some pensive music with strong female vocals (actually) as you drink a glass of wine while thinking of how things could have been? Check out the new National album.  Want to pretend you live in the 80s and dance all your feelings away? Then the new Carly Rae Jepsen album is your jam.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. look)
What: B2B
Why: Because Bay To Breakers remains one of the most fun races in the US, even if it is no longer the wild free for all it once was.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Rage Harder
Why: Because sometimes all you need out of a video game is something that allows you to shoot mutants with a BFG.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: RIP Grumpy Cat; You Were The Man Then, Dog; The Truth About Comas
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Sensible access to abortion.
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

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

Webtacular World Issue # 284, May 12, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators! On a brighter note than much of this week would entail, I want to wish all of you mothers a happy mothers day – especially to you new moms.  I know it isn’t easy, mostly because many of you have been bravely sharing your struggles with it, but you are all doing such a wonderful job.  Keep raising great kids, because we need good people in the world.  On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Barr Is In Contempt
Why:  Because the worst business man in America has created a Constitutional crisis.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Uber (As In Both Meanings) IPO
Why: Because Uber’s IPO did not go off as planned, even though it was one of the biggest IPOs in history. As an aside, it was really cool seeing a childhood friend who has overcome a lot get to ring the New York Stock Exchange’s opening bell.  Also, more trade wars, because, as previously stated, our idiot president is the worst business man in America.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: A Fetus Is Not Alive
Why: Because the recent attacks on Roe v. Wade are becoming more and more vicious and repugnant as time goes on.  Essentially, Georgia wants to label and prosecute a number of my friends and family as murderers. Georgia can kindly go fuck itself. Meanwhile, Denver is getting ready to go find itself by tripping in a forest.

JOURNALISM THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Free Press
Why: Because the White House is going full authoritarian.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Playoffs Are Fun
Why: Especially when your teams get to move on. Go Sharks and Warriors.

TELEVISION THING OF THE WEEK (no min. read)
What: God Damnit GoT
Why: Because it was a bad episode when it could not afford to be one. No link because I don’t want to spoil it for people who actually still want to watch it.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Big Thief
Why: Because Big Thief’s low-fi album U.F.O.F. makes you remember that rock still exists, it just doesn’t sound exactly the same as you remember it.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Our Literate Ex President
Why: Because Obama released another great book list.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Video Game Makers Try Out Collective Action
Why: Because in what seems like the remaining entertainment industry that hasn’t figured out guilds, unions, or why banding together might actually benefit them all, a few employees actually held a walkout for one of the worlds biggest game makers.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: GoT Bad; Road Trip; 25 Years Of The Blue Album
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: A Redo Of Game Of Thrones Season 8.
Why: Because Brian deserves it. Yes, I know there are more important things in the world happening, but when the things I use to escape the world are also not living up to their promise, then it makes everything even worse. And Barry is too depressing of a show to be a replacement.

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

Webtacular World Issue # 283, May 5, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators. I am very confused as to how William Barr is considered to be good at his job. This was ridiculous. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: It Shouldn’t Be News, But It Is
Why: Because Barr failed to perform a basic function of his job as Attorney General of the United States, and has set up yet another constitutional crisis. Because of this monster, a failed military coup, continued escalation of conflict in Israel and Gaza, another school shooting, and another poorly executed attempt to dismantle Americans’ health care all happened without much bandwidth to pay attention to any of it.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What:  Prime Time
Why: Because Amazon’s two day free shipping dream probably shouldn’t have worked.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Drug Problem
Why: Because a pharmaceutical executive was found guilty of racketeering due to the way in which the company encouraged opioid prescriptions.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: The Kentuky Derby
Why: Because the outcome of the biggest horse race in the US was overturned after video review. We also learned that Trump doesn’t know how to spell Kentucky.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read / 3 min. watch)
What: A Tale Of Two Video Game Movies
Why: Because Pikachu is looking pretty good. Sonic is not.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Over A Decade Of Vampires
Why: Because Vampire Weekend just came out with its new album as Indie Rock, or whatever music they are, is slowly being killed by pop, rap, and EDM. I still like it. Some people do not.

STAR WARS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: RIP, Chewie
Why: Because Peter Mayhew, the actor who portrayed Chewbacca for the majority of the series, passed away this week. It was also Star Wars day yesterday, so it felt appropriate to make this its own thing.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: A Tale Of Two VR  Headsets
Why: Because Oculus and Valve are releasing the next evolution in virtual reality. One is $400 and has no wires, and the other is $1000 and has wires. I wonder which one people are going to buy?

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Better Sonic; Back To The Show; True Love
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Probably both VR headsets, so I don’t have to spend time watching our government destroy itself.
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

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

Webtacular World Issue # 282, April 28, 2019

Greetings Webtaculators. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Nazis Are Alive And Well In The US
Why: Because for the second time in 6 months, synagogue congregants have been the target of national terrorist attacks by white American men.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Worldwide Military Spending Highest In Decades
Why: Because there sure are a lot of countries acting like they are gearing up for war.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: What The Census Means
Why: Because in trying to figure out how many people live in the United States, it is irreverent to also ask if people are citizens of the US, especially when it appears that the only reason for that question is to deter people from answering the census form.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: You Have No Followers
Why: Because Twitter is essentially forced to admit that there is a significant portion of its user base that are not real people.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: How Did This Go In?
Why: Because the things good basketball players can do in clutch moments is ridiculous. It’s always good to understand how much work it takes to sink a step back 3 from 30+ feet in one of the game’s best defender’s face.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Movie To End All Movies
Why: Because Avengers Endgame somehow managed to take 11 years worth of movies about superheros and stick a perfect landing. It also made over a billion dollars over one weekend, so that’s not too shabby.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Me Is Bad
Why: Because you should probably listen to Lizzo or Florence + The Machine’s take on Jenny of Oldstones from GoT.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Instagram And Being Real
Why: Because everyone’s posed photographs aren’t really cutting it anymore.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (long look)
What: Lost In Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Why: Because a huge portion of the author’s manuscripts and documents are now available online.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Get Over Here
Why: Because Mortal Kombat 11 (yes, there have been 11 main line Mortal Kombat games) actually succeeds in making you care about a story where ninjas beat each other up and then one tears off the other’s head.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: The Best Mexican Food In The US; Chili Pepper Challenge; Every Fatality Ever
Why: Because Internet.

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

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