Ars Technica: The best science and math moments in Sesame Street’s first 50 years. “There was nothing on television like Sesame Street when it premiered 50 years ago, and the truth is, there’s still nothing quite like it now. (That’s a big reason why it was such a valuable acquisition for HBO in 2015.) Throughout the years, the show has always been on the front lines of what’s important to teach children. And as some of the show’s greatest hits demonstrate, long before educational advocates began popularizing the STEM acronym (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), Sesame Street was already there with silly characters promoting serious lessons.” I am always here for the pinball song. One two three FOUR FIVE six seven eight NINE TEN eleven twelve….
Stuff NZ: Facebook launches reporting tool to combat celebrity-bait ads in NZ. “Facebook has launched a new reporting tool to help New Zealanders flag misleading, celebrity-bait advertisements. The ads use images of public figures to encourage users to sign up to investment schemes or buy beauty products, for example. Users then struggle to get out of payment schemes.”
ABC News (Australia): John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John and Savage Garden added to official Sounds of Australia archive. “This will be music to your ears: John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John and Savage Garden are the latest artists to be added to the National Film and Sound Archive’s selection of recordings.”
Esquire: What to Read, Watch, and Listen to In Preparation For the Robot Apocalypse. “From Smart House to 2001: A Space Odyssey, pop culture tends to instill in our collective human consciousness a general distrust of technology. But somehow, we just don’t get sick of stories about the inevitable robot apocalypse. … To help guide you through our potential near-future terror, we’ve put together everything to see, read, and listen to from pop culture and academia. We’ll fill you in on how each one predicts what our robot-everything lives will look like, too.”
Another find via Reddit: a database covering popular music in movies and television from the 1920s to 1981. It’s called Lights, Camera Backbeat. From the About page: “LCB starts at the beginning of synchronised sound and film with early Vitaphone and Phonofilm musical shorts in the 1920’s and continues up to the birth of MTV in 1981. The 1980’s launched a new era in music on film with a massive increase in music videos produced for TV use as well as home video product on VCR and Betamax. Prior to 1981 there were often only limited chances to see major pop music performers on TV and in the cinema, particularly if you lived outside the USA.” I did a couple of quick searches; the database did not contain Paul Anka’s performances in GIRLS TOWN and did not contain Mamie Van Doren’s songs from UNTAMED YOUTH. So lots of results, but nowhere near complete.
How-To Geek: What Is a “Hot Take,” and Where Did the Phrase Come From?. “Hot takes are everywhere online. You’ve probably seen the phrase ‘hot take’ thrown around, but what exactly does it mean? Where did it come from, and how do you use it?”
The Parthenon: New website provides platform for West Virginia filmmakers. “Vandalia TV may look like many other streaming services, except for one big difference: Every film on the website was created by a West Virginia filmmaker.”