Scientists figure out what’s bugging the bees—and how to save them

Save bees!

By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Swarm, the new app from Foursquare, is done with games


Does anyone even care about badges anymore? What seemed like an unavoidable trend just a few years ago is now fading into the sunset. Perhaps this is no better felt than in the release of Foursquare’s new app, Swarm (which is, funny enough, named after a badge on Foursquare). While it does a great job of spinning out the friend-focused elements of Foursquare’s check-in system, Swarm is shockingly devoid of any gamification features — especially ones that arguably put the company on the map in the first place.

Swarm_ScreenWhen logging in to Swarm for the first time, users with a history on Foursquare will see their data — including friends and past check-ins — seamlessly port to the new interface. You can check in with the same ease as the original Foursquare app, but the app encourages users to update their general location with its “neighborhoods” designation.

For example, if I’m sitting…

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By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Two bells


Two bellsThere are millions of these little beauties around the British countryside at the moment – and they even find a home in the leafier spots of London.

The native bluebell, more delicate than their robust European cousins, wondrous clustered richly together and in their own right.

Worth spending far too long on your knees in the woods with a macro lens… Click to enlarge

photo shop green

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By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Sad Batman


Earlier this week, the first image of Ben Affleck’s Batman (henceforth known as “Batfleck”) was released to the general public.


Personally I was not impressed. It looks to me like Batfleck has been abusing steroids, he’s vein-ier that a porn cock and his ears look like kitten ears. (SirEats will have you know his ears are more batlike than Batfleck.)

But, as is true of all things, my reaction had nothing on the internet’s. Behold the Sad Batman Meme.

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By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Cloud fight: Sifting through the Red Hat OpenStack support twitsnit


You have to love it when the fallout from a story is bigger, better and more exciting than the story itself.

Earlier this week the Wall Street Journal, citing unspecified documents, reported that Red Hat(s rhat) would not support its own Linux customers’ use of non-Red Hat OpenStack. Since OpenStack is the foundation of Red Hat’s foray into cloud computing — which, let’s face it, is its growth path, I followed up on that story here. Red Hat supporters cried foul, saying that this was standard practice for many software companies — that no one vendor can support everyone else’s stuff. Others denied the contention altogether.

So let’s try to sort this out. First, from the Journal:

“In its quest to sell OpenStack, Red Hat has chosen not to provide support to its commercial Linux customers if they use rival versions of OpenStack, according to documents reviewed by The Wall…

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By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Poems by James Owens

The Blue Hour

Hard Rain

Blackbirds were there and not there,
flickering as darkly as the forest,
in and out of the wind,
quick needles sewing the day to our blood.

She said, “They are seeds on the first breath of creation.”

She said, “Maybe there is a world where chaos
is distinguishable from order, but I won’t go there.”

She said, “My bones are hollow, too,
and when I tumble onto the grass
with my arms wide, the sky falls into me.”

Her face was shining.

It breaks my heart when I remember
that this was the day before the storm.

I told you: look, it is snowing

It was beginning
just then, outside

in the winter sunlight,
first flakes erratic and

quick, from a cloud-
swept wilderness.

You were three years old.
I loved you, and

the same snow was already falling
in some other year

when I…

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By nikiasyikin Posted in Food

Alphabet a History: L is for Loveliness

80,000 words

(An excerpt from diary, July 1989)

Loveliness is one letter away from loneliness.

There is something about writing for me that is lovely and lonely all at once. There are so many more things I am able to express and say through writing that I can’t say in real life. Mostly, because I write what I am unable to feel in physical reality.

Maybe it is because while growing up, I did not have a safe space in which to cry and experience sadness. I had loving parents whose definition of love involved teaching me how to survive war-scale tragedy. To that end, crying and sadness were not tolerated.

I needed somewhere for my intense sadness to go, and so I would stay up all night and write letters to my friends. And write in my diary. And because cutting too is a version of writing, I would carve morse…

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