Tag Archives: weekthatwas

The week that was, Royal Wedding edition

The United Kingdom will shut down this weekend for the Royal Wedding. Punters are betting on everything with 2:1 odds that the queen will be wearing a blue hat while the appearance of a white hat is a long 33:1.

While doing research for the wedding, a staff writer for The New Yorker discovered that Her Majesty The Queen, “owns all porpoises, whales, sturgeon, and dolphins that pass within three miles of Britain’s shores.”

Sweden is well on its way to becoming a cashless society. Fewer than half of Swedish banks keep any cash on hand. In other news, thousands of Swedes are implanting microchips under their skin to save having to carry around ID cards.

The city of Chicago is selling more than 3,200 vacant lots on the city’s South and West sides for just $1 each.

A robotic dragon burst into flames during a parade at Disney World. On-lookers, unaware of the calamity, thought the pyrotechnics were all part of the act.

West Japan Railways issued a statement after one of its trains mistakenly departed a station 25 seconds early. The company spokesman said the incident was, “truly inexcusable.”

A family in China was dismayed to discover that their adopted pet dog with a ravenous appetite was, in fact, a bear.

Watching Westworld? UCLA neuroscientists reported Monday that they have transferred a memory from one animal to another via injections of RNA.

A member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology skeptical about climate change suggested that perhaps the sea level was rising because of “rocks” in the ocean.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is using doughnuts and bacon to lure black bears into an enclosure where they can get a sample of their fur.

Boeing predicts that over the next two decades China will need 110,000 new pilots. To this end, China is buying up flight-instruction schools in the US, Europe, Australia and Canada.

Xia Boyu, a Chinese climber who lost both legs climbing Everest over 40 years ago, successfully summited the mountain at the age of 69.

Photo: Special marmite packaging ready for the royal wedding this weekend

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The week that was (05-11-2018)

California passed the UK to become the 5th largest economy in the world.

An Israeli settlement camp in the West Bank was the first to deploy miniature drones to secure its borders.

Feliks Zemdegs from Australia has broken the world record for solving a Rubik’s cube. He did it in just 4.22 seconds.

It took three months for the Postal Service and UPS to catch on that a man in Chicago had submitted a change of address form to redirect all of UPS’ corporate mail to Apartment L2, 6750 N. Ashland Ave. in Chicago where the resident intercepted, sorted, and cashed $60k in checks meant for UPS.

A man in China accidentally paid over $29,000 for two steamed buns when he entered his PIN instead of approximately 30 cents he owed into Alipay, the mobile payment app he was using.

Detailed radar surveys of Mt. Mantap, the site of North Korea’s underground nuclear test site, revealed that the most recent explosion vaporized granite rock causing a cavity about, “the size of a football stadium” and caused the mountain to collapse into itself.

It was revealed that the iconic cascading green characters shown at the beginning of all Matrix films are just recipes for sushi.

“I was imagining about 100 or 200 people might want to come, not 30,000,” said Laurent Luft, the president of the Paris Naturist Association which organized an art exhibit where you are required to leave your clothes at the door.

Google announced that it has taught a computer to say, “um-hmm” which was heralded as a major leap forward in Artificial Intelligence.

A pitcher for the Red Sox got in trouble after some speculated that his three-hour Fortnite sessions caused carpal tunnel injury endangering his pitching.

China is building high rise buildings to house industrial pig farms.

Photo: Truck carrying chocolate overturned on a Polish highway (NYT)

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The week that was, May-the-Forth be with you edition

The world’s oldest spider died. She was 43.

Gibson Guitar, makers of BB King’s Lucille and Jimmy Page’s double-neck, declared bankruptcy.

Soni Wolf, the founding member of the San Francisco-based group, Dykes on Bikes, died of natural causes. She was 69.

A group of Iranian women disguised themselves with beards and wigs in order to sneak in and watch a soccer game.

Italians are bringing in Chinese labor to work in Tuscany to make expensive handbags that carry the coveted, “Made in Italy” label. Many of these handbags are probably exported back to China.

More than 500 students and teachers were evacuated from a university in Australia because of rotting durian that had been left in a cupboard.

The photography world erupted in controversy after an award-winning wildlife photo was accused of photo-shopping in a stuffed anteater. But doubts remain.

Ford announced new technology they are developing for car windows that allows for blind people to “feel” the view.

Engineers in NYC are volunteering time and hardware to build NYC Mesh, a guerrilla alternative network to the expensive, centralized ISPs.

A museum in the South of France had an existential crisis when it discovered that over half of its collection are forgeries.

UC Berkeley announced plans to build housing on People’s Park.

Goldman Sachs President David Solomon said that artificial intelligence has made many of the jobs on Wall Street unnecessary. On the equity desk, “where 15-20 years ago we had 500 people making markets in stocks. Today we have three.”

Taylorism is alive and well in China as it was revealed that workers in high-stress environments, “wear caps to monitor their brainwaves, data that management then uses to adjust the pace of production and redesign workflows”

Facebook published research that demonstrates how they can send messages directly to your skin.

The first person charged under Malaysia’s new Anti-Fake News law was sentenced to one month in prison for exaggerating local police response times in a video he uploaded to YouTube.

Photo credit: Thanks to Isaac Hepworth for the chyron generator and Julia for the text.

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The week that was (04-27-2018)

MedMen, a high-end marijuana dispensary, opened its doors on Fifth Avenue.

“It was selfish. It started small and got bigger and out of control,” said Gilberto Escamilla, a South Texas man pleading guilty to stealing $1.2M in fajitas.

Because of quadruple-digit inflation in Venezuela, computers at the country’s stock exchange are no longer able to efficiently calculate share prices.

Students at the UC Berkeley elected a squirrel to its student senate.

Avery Island, the home of Tabasco, is in danger due to rising sea levels.

Kim Jong Un  brought his own toilet to the historic Korea summit.

Scientists can now successfully keep a pig’s brain alive, without the body.

Donald Trump’s scheduled visit to the UK in July will fall on Friday the 13th when there will also be a partial eclipse of the sun.

After an argument with his mother, a 12-year old boy grabbed his mom’s credit card and took a 4-day holiday in Bali.

California has several initiatives to break off from the United States. In Memphis, leaders are discussing leaving the State of Tennessee.

It was reported that only three wild caribou are left in the contiguous United States.

Scientists grew vegetables in Antarctica without soil or sunlight to determine if it might be possible to grow crops on a potential mission to Mars.

A mail carrier in Brooklyn stashed about 17,000 pieces of undelivered mail for more than a decade because he was “overwhelmed”

A road that recharges electric vehicles as they drive on it opened in Sweden.

An engineer in Japan who grew up watching The Transformers, built one.

Photo credit “What the Verdun battlefield looks like now”  jeroentje22

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The week that was (04-20-2018)

The CEO of MGA Entertainment bid $890 million in a last-minute effort to save Toys R Us from going bankrupt. Five people were arrested after they turned an abandoned Toys R Us into a massive rave.

The Walmart yodeling boy sang at Coachella.

In a leaked memo, Apple warns employees to stop leaking information

Samsung stock plummeted 10% after an employee of Samsung Securities pressed the wrong key and mistakenly unleashed 2 billion shares (worth about $105 billion USD) to members of its stock option program instead of 2 billion won (about $2 billion USD). The mistake was compounded during the 37 minutes it took to realize and correct the error when several eagle-eyed employees sold their windfall, flooding the market and depressing share prices.

The IRS’ “modernized eFile tax system,” built to handle bulk tax form submissions from online services such as Turbo Tax and H&R Block’s Tax Cut, crashed on the last day to file taxes.

In preparation for the eventual colonization of space, NASA shot human sperm into space.

Bitcoin prices spiked with some attributing the renewed interest to the cryptocurrency satisfying conditions that would make it halal.

Scientists accidentally created a mutant enzyme that breaks down plastic drink bottles.

Four recent MIT graduates unveiled their new “Spyce Kitchen,” a robotic cooking machine about the size of a refrigerator which, at the press of a button, can turn out in less than three minutes any of the seven chef-approved bowls of stew on its menu. The first prototype, built in the basement of their fraternity house, “was conceived as an engineering solution to every hungry college student’s gripe — where to get good, cheap food fast.”

If you think your coffee has a bit too much of a jolt in it, beware. It might contain used battery dust.

A trader named Morgan Stanley was fired from Morgan Stanley.

Police in Louisiana say a woman came home to discover a naked stranger in her tub, eating her Cheetos while taking a bath.

In what is being hailed as a “Moon-landing equivalent for robots,” two engineers in Singapore have built an AI-powered robot that can build an IKEA chair in less than 21-minutes without instructions.

The FDA approved contact lenses that darken in sunlight.

Remember that burned out home in San Jose listed for $800,000? A condemed home in Fremont, just a few miles away, sold for $1.2 million, all cash.

A small town in Georgia prepared for a large Neo-Nazi march scheduled in their town by inviting families to draw rainbows and unicorns along the parade route.

Five men that attended San Rafael High School in 1971 came forward with the origin story of 420 code with published evidence.

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The week that was (04-13-2018)

Queen Elizabeth compared President Trump to a noisy helicopter.

An Ohio man was arrested Wednesday on a domestic violence charge, after hitting a woman in the face with a pizza.

A Houston gas station owner opened fire on someone who underpaid for his Slim Jim.

A 12-year-old in Philadelphia was arrested for brandishing a loaded assault rifle.

A Spaniard, raised by wolves, confessed to being disappointed with human life.

Someone finally invented a “roomba for your lawn.” (Lars in Tokyo points out Honda already has one).

Sales are way up at the New England Confectionery Company after they announced they were going to stop making their iconic Necco wafer. “People are rushing to stockpile them like they’re the next cryptocurrency.”

After 120 years, Sears is closing its last store in Chicago, its hometown.

DARPA developed a neural implant that has been shown to improve short-term memory by an average of 35 percent.

Chinese search engine giant Baidu launched a stock photo platform that uses blockchain technology to protect image intellectual property.

A married couple in China that was tragically killed in a car crash four years ago gave “birth” to a baby through a surrogate mother using IVF. The grandparents are overjoyed but had to submit to DNA testing to prove the baby’s nationality.

Researchers from Columbia University and New York State Psychiatric Institute determined that the human body continues to produce new brain cells well into your 70’s.

Hockey sticks were left out on front doorsteps all across Canada as the nation mourned the loss of 15 college hockey players in a tragic bus crash.

In Denmark, the demolition of an old 173-foot concrete silo went horribly wrong and took out the neighboring library and cultural center.

A burned out house in San Jose was listed for $800,000.

“It’s a windy day. It must have flown through the window and into my purse,” claimed Kennecia Posey who was pulled over for erratic driving and arrested for possession of cocaine and marijuana.

Eight Argentinian police officers were fired after claiming that more than half a ton of marijuana that disappeared from a police warehouse had been eaten by mice.

“The time has come for serious consideration of a shift in federal marijuana policy,” said former Speaker of the United States House of Representatives John Boehner in a statement announcing his addition to the board of one of the nation’s largest, multi-state actively-managed cannabis corporations.

In an effort to combat climate change, Los Angeles began painting some of its streets white to reflect the summer heat. Not to be outdone, China is testing roads paved with solar panels.

A 112-year-old Japanese man was recognized by Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s oldest male. The world’s oldest female is a 117-year-old Jamaican.

Starting next year, it will cost an extra 1,000 yen to leave Japan.

A large chunk of the Irish cliffs of Mór fell into the Atlantic.

photo credit: Trump walked to Air Force One in high winds — and the photos of his hair are mesmerizing

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The week that was (04-06-2018)

While a Milwaukee pastor was delivering his Easter sermon to his congregation a thief broke into his SUV and stole his bible.

An Easter performance of the Passion of Christ was all too real for a member of the audience member in Brazil. Taking matters into his own hands he whacked the actor playing a Roman soldier with his motorcycle helmet to rescue Jesus from the cross.

For the first time in modern history, the murder rate in London surpassed that of New York.

A South Carolina congressman pulled out a loaded .38-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun during a meeting with his constituents on Friday.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation was called out to rescue two goats stuck on a bridge.

photo credit: U2 pilot selfie with Northern Lights

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The week that was (03-30-2018)

The Governor of Utah signed a bill ordering Utah’s Department of Agriculture and Food to grow medical-grade cannabis for terminally ill patients.

It was a slow news day in Arizona on Monday so a Phoenix TV station decided to do an epic 90-minute livestream of a cat stuck on a pole.

Linda Brown from Brown vs. Board of Education died at age 76.

Two Chinese companies are now offering cars that they can 3D print in just three days for under $10k.

Another Chinese company has teamed up with Ford to offer five different model cars via a vending machine and mobile app.

Scientists have managed to build a bio-computer made of living human cells.

Maserati and Ferrari teamed up to build an SUV that can go from 0-60 in 3.7 seconds and do a top speed of more than 180 mph.

Alexo Athletica announced a new yoga pant that features a pocket where you can carry a small pistol.

Stormy Daniels had her much anticipated interview on 60 Minutes which set off a renewed debate over which magazine was used for the famous spanking.

Chinese startup 32Teeth has combined facial recognition and big data analysis to create a connected toothbrush that, “offers precise identification of 16 tooth surface cleanliness levels and analyzes users’ brushing activity data.” Oh, and you mine cryptocurrency while you brush your teeth too.

Last week a 3-year old was killed by a stray bullet from an AK-47. This week a 73-year old collapsed at her kitchen table, shot by her neighbor who obviously needs more target practice.

“I am not bitter. I was upset at first but mistakes happen,” said Richard Phillips upon being released after 45 years in prison for a crime he didn’t commit.

A Georgia woman drove her SUV into a concrete pole to prove to her children that God was real.

With two goalies out on injury, the Chicago Blackhawks had to reach deep into their bench to come up with an emergency goalkeeper. Scott Foster is an accountant by day and the last time he played a competitive game was in 2005.

Opening Day for the Miami Marlins didn’t start out so well.  The first pitch of the season resulted in a home run.

After multiple failed tries, ‘Mad’ Mike Hughes, the 61-year old retired limo driver from Apple Valley, California finally launched himself into the air on his steam-powered rocket made from a modified RV. “I’m tired of people saying I chickened out and didn’t build a rocket. I’m tired of that stuff. I manned up and did it,” said Hughes. While he made it up to 2,000 feet, it wasn’t high enough for him to complete his mission and prove the earth is flat.

Photo credit – The Atlantic

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The week that was (03-23-2018)

A Romanian court ruled that a 63-year-old man is dead despite what would appear to be convincing evidence to the contrary: the man himself appeared alive and well in court. The court told him he was too late and would have to remain officially deceased.

In an effort to save money, the US Navy’s new Virginia-class submarines have replaced the clunky joysticks that used to control their periscopes with a more readily available (and familiar) XBox controller.

Another week, another pet mishap by United Airlines, this one narrowly averted. A flight turned around before reaching its destination once it was discovered the pet was on the wrong flight. Better to inconvenience the passengers on the flight than to suffer another unflattering story in the press. By Tuesday, United announced a temporary suspension to all pet transport.

Ford Motor recalled 1.4 million cars because loose bolts could allow the steering wheel to come off. Unfortunately, these cars are not yet able to take over and drive themselves.

The last male northern white rhino passed away. Scientists efforts to keep the species alive now turn to in vitro fertilization with the last two female northern white rhinos. (photo by @amivitale)

Charles Lazarus, the founder of Toys-R-Us died this week, just one week after the company he founded announced it was closing its doors for good.

Bozo the Clown passed away. Frank Avruch, who played Bozo from 1959-1970 died at 89.

Naomi found an interesting looking rock while digging around in the dirt during her older sister’s soccer game. This week she found out that it was a rare, 65 million-year-old fossil.

For the first time, the French ate more hamburgers than ham-and-butter baguettes.

Sherpas in Nepal removed 200,000 lbs of trash from Mount Everest. The mounds of trash included empty bottles of Tuborg beer, food cans, torn tents, empty oxygen bottles and even bodies of expired hikers.

CryptoKitties, an cryptocurrency-powered collectible game, received an investment of $12 million with high profile VC firms Andreessen Horowitz and Union Square Ventures leading a funding round.

Mexico launched a cryptocurrency backed by habanero peppers.

The design for the new post-Brexit British passports was announced. They will be made in France.

A 3-year old was accidentally shot by her grandmother as she was cleaning her AK-47.

Dramatic aerial video shows how Kenya’s Rift Valley is living up to its name.

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The week that was (03-16-2018)

We lost a great mind this week. In all the stories of Stephen Hawking’s life, my favorite was the detail that he used to run his wheelchair over the toes of people he didn’t like.

Mining cryptocurrency generates a lot of heat in the computers that are doing the computations. One French company decided to take advantage of the excess heat and sell them as “plug-and-mine” heaters.

A plane in Russia had a bumpy talkoff, lost it’s rear door and proceeded to dump $368 million in gold bars and diamonds all over the runway and 16 miles of desolate countryside Siberia.

Canada announced that they have hired their first female head of the mounties. Brenda Lucki, will take over as commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in mid-April.

Those people that steal your delivered boxes off your front doorstep? They have a name now, they’re called “porch pirates.”

Walmart filed a patent for robotic bees.

A giant, yellow, inflatable rubber duck escaped from western coast of Australia.

Google Japan released Google Street View from a dog’s perspective. This follows up a 2015 project when they released Google Street View in Hiroshima from at cat’s perspective.

Japan’s Sanrio announced that a Hello Kitty bullet train will start operating this Summer on the Osaka-Fukuoka route. This will join ANA’s Pokemon Jet which has it’s own website lovingly laid out in Comic Sans.

A hippo was discovered living in a pond in Southern Mexico. No one knows how it got there but the residents of the town have come to love the animal so much they have nicknamed it “Tyson.”

The Swindles were moving from Oregon to Kansas and took a United flight with their 10-year-old German shepherd Irgo in the hold. When they went to pick up their dog in Kansas City, a Great Dane was there instead. United mixed up the two and sent Irgo on a 16-hour flight to Japan. Apparently United has a pretty poor record for pet transportation.

The New Zealand post has a much better record. They successfully delivered a package addressed to, “Kay and Philip, on a farm, situated up a long drive with cows, opposite Cust pub or thereabouts”

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