Webtacular World Issue # 371, May 31, 2021

Greetings Webtaculators! I hope everyone enjoyed a long weekend, and gave serious consideration as to whether Americans (excluding Confederates) who died in our wars gave their lives to ensure less Americans could vote or to ignore a violent insurrection in our Capitol. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: We Collectively Choose To Learn The Wrong Lessons
Why: Because it has been a year since George Floyd was murdered. Instead of turning inward, and truly examining America’s heritage, people do things like murdering a bunch of co-workers instead of facing a review for alleged racist statements.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: A Shift Toward Our Future
Why: Because Big Oil lost massively this past week – ExonMobil shareholders installed new renegade board members, Chevron was forced by shareholders to take customer emissions into account when planning emission reductions, and Shell was forced to cut even more greenhouse gas emissions than it planned by a Dutch court.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Voting Restrictions In The US
Why: Because one party is hellbent on winning regardless of the cost.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (long reads)
What: The Problem With Automation
Why: Because as it stands right now, AI has inherent bias. Using it in policing or insurance will only result in continued biases against certain types of people.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. reads)
What: What The Hell Is Wrong With Us?
Why: Because between multiple instances of awful fan behavior during the NBA playoffs and the Grand Slams not respecting Naomi Osaka’s request to not do post match interviews to the point where she quit the French Open, athletes have been getting absolutely no respect.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: MGM(A)
Why: Because Amazon bought the historied MGM studios for a cool $8.45 billion.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Pitchfork Turns 25
Why: Because one of the most influential music blogs of the past two decades, regardless of its taste being largely indie- focused and questionable.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: The Hungriest Caterpillar Lives On
Why: Because the beloved author of The Very Hungry Caterpillar passed away. The book is one of the children’s classics that truly holds up both through its bold illustrations and its simple, yet elegant story of transformation.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Being OK is OK!
Why: Because two recent games, Biomutant and Knockout City, are solid 7/10’s for different reasons – Biomutant is a game made by 20 people that is trying to do what it takes a team of hundreds and doesn’t quite make it, and Knockout City is a simple variation of dodgeball that somehow reinvents shooters while not having much content. Both are extremely fun.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: It’s Quiz Time Y’all; How To Indie In 60; Death Of the Condiment
Why: Because Internet.

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

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

Webtacular World Issue # 370, May 23, 2021

Greetings Webtaculators! Trying to return to normal takes time. I’m still trying to adjust to being relatively able to to participate in society in a “regular” way – it turns out many social norms and customs a person develops over their lifetime actually require practice to maintain. It also can be absolutely draining, even if it also makes you feel great. My advice is treat it like working out after an injury; ease back into things, and ramp up as you get stronger again. Of course, I don’t usually listen to my own advice, which is my way of pre-apologizing for the briefness of this issue. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The State Of Our Infrastructure
Why: The recent attack on the East Coast’s gasoline pipeline proves that our modern society remains way more vulnerable to malfeasance than ever before. In this case, Colonial Pipeline lost control of it’s billing system, so it couldn’t track transactions. The only course of action that made sense to a company that only exists to extract profit was to shut down gas delivery, even though the damage caused by this action most likely far outstripped what the company would have lost if it continued to deliver gas without tracking.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: We Quit
Why: Because businesses are failing to provide workers enough money to do their jobs. Weird how many businesses fail basic economic theory.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (22 min. watch)
What: Signing Off
Why: Because over the pandemic, Judge Middleton’s courtroom and the broad access to his cases made minor celebrities of the judge, the lawyers, the plaintiffs, and the defendants who appeared before him. The court is advising that hearings no longer be distributed widely. This is the exact reason the Supreme Court doesn’t film itself – it turns out that having too much access can actually hinder a court’s ability to do its job.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: The Future Is Ford
Why: Because Ford decided to update its most sold model to an EV.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Old White Dudes Can Still Be Winners!
Why: Because Phil Mickelson became the oldest winner of the PGA Championship at 50 years old.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Spiraling
Why: Because the latest entry in the “Saw” series is apparently awful.

MUSIC THINGS OF THE WEEK (some read)
What: Billboards and Eurovisions
Why: Because both happened, I guess.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. look)
What: Fake Plastic Trees
Why: Because my friend and I used to play a modified version of “Punch Buggie” where the goal was to be the first person to spot hidden cell towers on the way up to Tahoe.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Go Read Something Else
Why: Because there will always be more books.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Oregon Re-Trailed
Why: Because selling all of your supplies and buying nothing but bullets was the best strategy on the green and black version, but probably not the most historically accurate.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Second Thumb; Levitating Hot Dog; BTS’ World
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: F-150 Lightning
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

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

Webtacular World Issue # 369, May 16, 2021

Greetings Webtaculators. This weekend, I got to see a group of friends in person. I had not been able to do this in over a year because of COVID. Thanks to the vaccine, things can start getting back to normal, or some version of it. Also, pay your taxes. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Back To Normal
Why: Because I have essentially written a version of the recent escalation of violence between Israel and Palestine multiple times already throughout Webtacular World’s eight year history (See Issue # 283, Issue # 233, Issue # 226, Issue # 168, and Issue # 33 for just some examples). Much like those other times, the violence and death is a choice, and not a necessary outcome, made by two hardline parties in a bid to maintain their own power. It has been, and remains, atrocious.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Infrastructure Week!
Why: Because the United States is still falling apart, but the right policies can start putting it back together.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The NRA Is Screwed
Why: Because a judge tossed out the NRA’s bankruptcy claim, leaving the organization on the hook for New York-based lawsuits.

TECH THING OF THE WEEK (long read)
What: Ode To The Filing Cabinet
Why: Because filing systems are an important, overlooked part of business operations.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Greatness
Why: Because Steph Curry singlehandedly willed a broken Warriors team to the play-in game while also winning his second scoring title at the age of 33. That may not seem old, but it is ancient in basketball years.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Dumb Zombie Fun
Why: Because maybe we all need a bit of purposeful stupidity now and then.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: A Little Bit Blonder Now
Why: Because St. Vincent’s latest album runs right back to the 1970s. It works, because everything Annie Clark touches does.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (long look)
What: The Same Damned Thing
Why: Do you like seeing people being obliterated by rockets and missiles? I sure don’t.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Game Makers
Why: Because the video games industry still hasn’t figured out that keeping workers relatively happy over a long term is worthwhile.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Just 12 Minutes 
Why: Because the game 12 Minutes looks like it might be one of the templates for how games can be the best medium to tell certain stories.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: A History In Googling; Lovetris; Hearing Rage For The First Time
Why: Because Internet.

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

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

Webtacular World Issue # 368, May 9, 2021

Greetings Webtaculators! Happy Mother’s Day to all who are celebrating. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: No Herds Here
Why: Because Americans are such free thinkers that we will no longer be able to reach herd immunity. Thanks, idiots.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Doge A Bullet
Why: Because the meme crypto Dogecoin burned brightly for a while, but crashed back down like most things Elon Musk touches.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: What True Greatness Looks Like
Why: Because Cruz Reynoso, the first Latino member of the California Supreme Court, passed away this weekend.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Much More Than An Energizer
Why: Because energy electrification requires massive amounts of batteries. Here’s a refresher on how they work.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The Non No-Hitter
Why: Because baseball’s attempt to make new rules is getting ridiculous.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: No Need To Get Back To Theaters Quite Yet
Why: Because Netflix seems to be trying its hardest to make sure it has enough good movies, like Mitchells vs. The Machines, to keep you at home.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (some reads)
What: New Things
Why: Because while I could spend time talking about the new Weezer and Coldplay (which are both better than they have any right being), I’d rather talk about newer artists I stumbled across – check out Ashe, Remember Sports, The Aces, and Argonaut & Wasp. It’s good stuff – the kids are all right.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK ()
What:
Why:

PODCAST THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Keep Being Anti-Racist
Why: Because you can get help doing this with Be Antiracist, Ibram X. Kendi’s new podcast.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Even More Evil
Why: Because Resident Evil is back again, this time with a giant vampire lady who kidnapped the protagonist’s baby. What’s not to love? In other news about gaming news, three of the founding members of the long-running website Giant Bomb just left to pursue other things. Giant Bomb was one of the first gaming sites that understood that people wanted to watch videos of gameplay long before most other outlets understood how massive of a change the industry was going to face.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Opioids Are A Bastard; Musk On Parade; Way Too Much Star Wars
Why: Because Internet.

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

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

Webtacular World Issue # 367, May 2, 2021

Greetings Webtaculators! Welcome to the second May of 2020. However, thanks to the power of Science, we may get to leave this forever-year behind us soon. I just got my second shot of the Pfizer vaccine, and have never been happier to have been stabbed by a stranger. I hope you all can get vaccinated as well soon. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: History
Why: Because for the first time ever, two women appeared behind the President as Biden addressed Congress last week. Generally speaking, I hope America can meet all of the goals the President set.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Better, But Divergent
Why: Because I think the IMF’s forecast is correct – the important part to recognize is that COVID not only hit countries differently, but will have vastly different levels of recovery. This should be avoided as much as possible.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: How Big Are Schools’ Boundaries?
Why: Because like most things with technology, once simple definitions no longer quite fit in a world where your classroom is also your bedroom, and you can yell about your teacher to your whole school on a weekend.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (12 min. watch)
What: Friends In Space
Why: Because watching humans try to figure out moving around in space is hilarious.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Pobrecito Arron
Why: Because it looks like Arron Rodgers is stuck in Green Bay for the rest of his life.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: No One Watched The Oscars
Why: Because continuing from my joke last week, it turns out no one actually did watch. Viewership plummeted below 10 million for the first time EVER.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: Dave Grohl Just Won’t Stop Making Things This Year
Why: Because I realize that I talk about the Foo Fighters a lot on this, but it’s only somewhat my fault – he dude just keeps on making / doing things, including this ridiculously stacked movie about the start of some of the largest bands in the last 50 years.

ART THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The Return Of The Smithsonian
Why: Because the U.S.’ premier group of museums are reopening this month.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Revisiting Prisoner
Why: Because last week I got to listen to Jason Rezaian speak about his experience, and I am glad that is something I will (hopefully) never have to experience.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Live Die Repeat(al)
Why: Because Returnal is an extremely difficult but beautiful roguelite where failure is part of the game.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK (∞)
What: Don’t Climb Everest During A Global Pandemic; How To Be The Best TV Comedy Writer; Jeff Goldblum + D&D = Magic?
Why: Because Internet.

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

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