The Verge recently discovered a YouTube video showing a menu that opens up a myriad of Mortal Kombat secrets.  As they say in their article:

"The menus, which appear in Mortal Kombat, Mortal Kombat 2, Mortal Kombat 3, andUltimate Mortal Kombat 3, have been dubbed EJB menus after the game's creator, Ed Boon. The menus can be used to launch the arcade cabinet's diagnostic test, manually change initials on the leaderboard, and show each character's ending bit of story. Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3's menu also includes options to unlock hidden characters, a demonstration of the game's fatalities, and a secret Galaga-clone (shown at the 9:30 mark)."

 Below is the video, which was uploaded by YourMKArcadeSource.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has unveiled a set of 14 vintage style travel posters to promote science and space enthusiasm.  Some of these include tourist destinations of Venus, Kepler 16b, and many more.  Check out the full list and poster size downloads from the NASA website:

Check out a few examples below, but be sure to check the link above for the full selection.

With the Super Bowl finally over and a wait of six months until the next game, what better way to fill in the gap than with some technological footnotes in the National Football League?  Below is a video that shows the in depth scientific endeavors of how a basic yellow line revolutionized how Americans enjoyed football.

From the team of scientists that created previous attempts to enhance television sports to the mathematics in the stadium, Vox shows how difficult it is to broadcast such a basic piece of the game.

On Tuesday, Twitter has announced that a panel will be formed in order to advise on speech, specifically the abuse of free speech over its platform.

This new panel will be formed by a Trust & Safety Council, which consists of over 40 members and will develop new strategies to combat abusive language over the Twittersphere.

Patricia Cartes, head of global policy outreach, stated, "As we develop products, policies, and programs, our Trust and Safety Council will help us tap into expertise and input of organizations at the intersection of these issues more efficiently and quickly."

According to TechNewsWorld, the goal of the Trust & Safety Council is threefold:

  • Safety advocates, scholars, and researchers focused on children, media literacy, digital citizenship and efforts that promote greater compassion and empathy on the Internet;
  • Grassroots advocacy groups that use Twitter to build movements and momentum; and
  • Community organizations that work to prevent abuse, harassment and bullying, as well as those involved in mental health and suicide prevention.
This announcement comes off the heels of a report earlier this week claiming that Twitter has a change to their timeline algorithm.  While this caused a stir among users, CEO Jack Dorsey attempted to calm the uproar over this possible change.

While our previous persona was an entrepenerial emperor, many, and some do, argue that Hillary Clinton comes from a political empire, that is, the Clinton family.  Family dynasties are nothing new to American politics, despite its greatest attempts to rid itself of such power structures: consider the Roosevelt family, Kennedy family, and the Bush family.

The current front-runner of the Democractic candidacy, Hillary has seen her fair share of all things politics.  Having studied law at Yale University, Clinton has experienced the Governor's Mansion of Arkansas (for two terms) as first lady, the White House (for two terms) as first lady, senator of New York, and Secretary of State.
Hillary Clinton
Hillary's experience, connections, and what she represents may very well be what have the attention of her large number of supporters.  The woman to have made it the furthest in the bid for presidency thus far and the one that seems most probable to be elected to the position in the near future, Clinton represents a class of people that feel underrepresented, that is, the female vote.  Piggybacking off of their ability to elect the first black American to the office of president, the Democratic party seems to be the party of progress, something Clinton campaigns on.  Hillary's relevant experience cannot be ignored: she has seen what it is like to be in office for many years, directly and indirectly.  

Those not of the liberal political persuasion call into question a number of things regarding the legitimacy of Clinton's candidacy.  Is someone fit to lead America although they have had a number of questionable decisions on their record?  Is someone who by many's assertion has changed their stance on a number of issues to appeal to those listening to her at the time the right choice for our country?  Who is to say they would not do the same to various world leaders, namely the ones America is at odds with?
What is real? How do you define 'real'? If you're talking about what you can feel, what you can smell, what you can taste and see, then 'real' is simply electrical signals interpreted by your brain.

As much as I want to fight it, I admit music is no exception to this - just ask John Adams.  Not the former president, but the American composer, John Coolidge Adams.  A very reputable and accomplished minimalistic composer, the aforementioned quote makes me think about a lot of things.  The type of music generally penned by Adams has an air about it that is very Matrixy musically, and arguably in tone.  John Adams came first, however...

Adams' opera Nixon in China
The section of Adams' opera Nixon in China called "News has a Kind of Mystery" is a great representation of minimalism.  A lot of rhythmic repetition/pulsation with simple melody and constant harmony that gradually evolves is apparent throughout the work.  You don't have to take my word for it, just take a look at the tape...

I think people would be more open to classical music if they knew how eclectic it really is.  Mozart and Beethoven are great, but there is so much to be explored than them.  Adams is, in my humble opinion, something many people would enjoy to their surprise.

Until next time...
The genre I probably appreciate most but have the least knowledge of or familiarity with is jazz. There are so many things going on simultaneously, musically speaking, it makes me go crazy, especially when experienced live.  I had the privilege of seeing Roy Hargrove perform at Jazz Showcase in Chicago this past week.  Although I am not familiar with his music enough to know the set list, I can tell you that it was one for the books.  

Roy Hargrove quintet, Jazz Showcase
I am not sure what said "this quintet is absolutely legit" more: the fact that Roy Hargrove had sunglasses on indoors for the entirety of the set or the fact that the musicians could be found at the bar in the same room they performed in before and after the set.

Whether or not these things contributed to the sensation of feeling giddy, it was something that overcame me that fine evening.  It was such a strong experience that I told my company that I felt like I was a girl who was flatteringly asked out buy a guy that they liked: my heart was racing and I felt like screaming the entire set.  I have more descriptive language in mind to describe the reaction I have to jazz and had seeing the Roy Hargrove quintet, but I find it to be unnecessary to expound upon.

The performance embodied so much of what makes jazz great: people just gathering around to listen to good music performed by people that thoroughly enjoy performing music.  This was obviously apparent in each member's contribution to the artistry of the group.  The chemistry between each of the members could be felt throughout the room.  The bass and drummer has me weak at the knees.

Unfortunately, as stated, since I am unfamiliar with the genre, the only thing more I can really say is check them out for yourself

Until next time
Businessman, imperial entrepreneur, entertainer, and best-selling author: it could have been said that Donald John Trump had done it all prior to his announcement in June to run for the republican candidacy. Trump is showing the world that not only has he done it all, but he is doing it still.  Since his campaign was officially initiated, the limelight has been unable to escape Trump.  A number of politically incorrect statements, self-funded campaign (when considering his wealth and resource pool, this cannot be downplayed), and being the outsider of outsiders unhindered by the media have helped Trump immediately grasp and sustain the lead in most polls.

Donald John Trump
A lot of similarities can be observed between Donald Trump's surprising entrance and consistently held lead in polls and his stint in the world of professional wrestling: both seemingly came out of thin air, were considerably successful, and had him overtaking the establishment that had administered the organized prior to his involvement.  This could very well be part of the reason he has caught and sustained the attention of so many Americans, for better or worse.

Donald Trump - champion in and out of the ring
The thesis of Trump's candidacy may be the real reason many Americans are drawn to the idea of having him preside over the country.  Best summed up in his frequently used catchphrase "Make America great again," what American doesn't want a renaissance of prosperity and peace to spread throughout the land and world?  The reason this is no longer the case, Trump states, is the unfortunate density of incompetence in Washington, DC.  Trump also states that a return to the values many conservative politicians hold dear is the way to make the country great again, namely with an immediate repeal of the Affordable Care Act.  Claiming he would be a stickler on illegal immigration, Trump asserts that building a wall on the southern border would be done during his term.  While many have been critical of this, Trump consistently reassures his listeners that the wall would include a large door in the wall, reinforcing that he would want many immigrants to come to America, but legally.  Trump is now opposed to abortion although in the past was in favor of it.

While new to politics, to call into question the man's ability to lead is foolish - he has built and maintained a successful empire for years.  Is this enough though?  While there may be similarities between the business world and foreign policy world, there are a number of differences though - differences substantial enough to cause many to call into question the true legitimacy of this man as the republican candidate.  A lack of experience in world politics is a shortcoming one simply cannot overlook, and one that may be capitalized on by his eventual opponent (assuming Trump were to win the republican ticket).

Confidence and charisma sell...