io9 Weekend Roundup

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WEEKEND ROUNDUP: 7/16 - 7/17 - THE END OF DAYS IS JUST PACKED | Artwork by Timothy Lim (via Rampaged Reality).

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80 years ago, the best headline ever about owls was written

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It's been a big week for owls, what with the last Harry Potter film hitting theaters and an unfortunate British owl hitting a bedroom window. So it's rather fortuitous that this fantastic article from a 1930 issue of Modern Mechanics was brought to my attention. More »

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Take a documentary tour of London's dark and dank underground tunnels

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We've seen the urban spelunkers at Silent UK plumb the depths of London's abandoned mail train. Now they've created Crack the Surface, the first in a series of short films detailing their explorations of London's underground, an experience one spelunker compares to a real-life roleplaying game More »

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Watch a short film about Japan's 300-year-old handmade robots

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Filmmaker Matthew Allard has made this lovely little interview with craftsman Hideki Higashino, who specializes in the creation of Karakuri, or automata dating back to Japan's Edo period. Don't worry, they're a helluva lot less freaky than medieval European automata. More »

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The Wonder Woman TV show would've looked like a really awesome antiperspirant commercial

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If these handsome storyboards by Cesar Lemus are any indicator, the axed Wonder Woman TV show was chock full of scenes of Wonder Woman hoofing it through glades and dells and arenas and Hollywood Boulevard, filled with slack-jawed onlookers. More »


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Man builds turbine-powered Batmobile right out of the Tim Burton films

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When he was building his own street-legal Batmobile, car aficionado Casey Putsch was such a stickler for detail that he used a real turbine for the engine. It's not the stealthiest engine around, but subtlety, thy name is not Batmobile. More »


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Will 2011 put the "Comic" back in Comic-Con?

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It's an old chestnut among comic book fans that the San Diego Comic-Con has paradoxically ceased to be about comics. Hollywood juggernauts like Twilight, Avatar, and The Avengers have eclipsed the funny books in years past, leading some comic fans to grouse that they've become strangers at their own party. More »


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What if the Creature from the Black Lagoon used PostSecret?

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There's far more to monsters than kidnapping women and getting revenge on their creators. In the painting series "Tiny Confessions," these creatures lay their souls bare and confess the pain they don't want you to see behind their anger. More »


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The tautochrone: a shape that "looks like" time

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It's the end of a long action movie. The hero and villain are in a mad chase over a city skyline to deactivate and trigger a nuclear bomb, respectively. The villain throws himself down on a daringly curved piece of architecture with the intent to slide to the bottom of the curve and reach the trigger first... More »


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A visit to the world's most depressing abandoned water park

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Abandoned amusement parks are some discomfiting stuff. Videographer Mike Eisenberg knows this, and he's made this urban archaeology reel of the derelict Splash Down Dunes amusement park in Indiana, which is currently occupied by "a ton of mosquitoes and a lonely deer." More »

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Torchwood: Miracle Day is our real-life health nightmare writ extra-large

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When nobody can die, the world ironically becomes a massive hospice. That's the giant revelation at the heart of week two of Torchwood: Miracle Day. More »


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A complete guide to the planets' birthdays

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Last week saw Neptune Day, the first anniversary - in Neptune years - of the planet's discovery on September 23, 1846. That got us thinking: what are the "birthdays" for all the other planets? Here's a handy, mildly insane guide. More »

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New Judge Dredd movie photo shows that Dredd doesn't remove his helmet in the dark

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After seeing that zarjaz official photo and some leaked shots of his bike, it's been a while since we've seen anything from the production of Dredd. More »

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Where is all the Earth's heat coming from?

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Earth runs on massive amounts of heat, enough to melt iron in the core and create our magnetic field, enough to power the constant movement of plate tectonics. Where all this heat comes from is a mystery...but we're getting closer. More »


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Wear a map of Middle-earth as a decorative sun dress

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Looking to wear the Shire to your next picnic? Black Milk Clothing's $100 Middle-earth dress (note: site's crashed due to traffic) will take you there and back again, but you might have to contend with nosy strangers informing you there's a dab of Mordor on your hip. More »


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Hilariously awesome scientific paper finally reveals whether going to bed early make you healthy, wealthy, and wise

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That, at least, was Benjamin Franklin's theory. (He also said we should be early to rise, because he was a jerk, I guess.) But when scientists put this old maxim to the test, did they find any truth to it? More »


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