Obamahenge: US President Visits Stonehenge

Obama Stonehenge Illuminati

"Yep, this site is perfect for the next Bilderberg BBQ!"

Post your own satirical captions below!

Via National Geographic.

Have You Seen This Lost Wormhole?

Please notify your nearest Timelord if found.

Art by Michael Kleinman, via Laughing Squid.

News Briefs 05-09-2014

"Nature must govern technology, not the other way around."

Quote of the Day:

“Logic only gives man what he needs. Magic gives him what he wants.”

Tom Robbins

Darklore Volume 8: Now Available!

Good things come to those who wait, the old saying goes. And I've definitely made you wait for this one - it's almost a year overdue - but we finally made it: I'm happy to announce the eighth instalment of our anthology series covering hidden history, fringe science and general Forteana, Darklore Volume VIII, is now available for sale! You can pick up your copy from any number of online retailers through a simple search. But for simplicity's sake, here's the links to Amazon:

Darklore Volume 8

Here's a quick listing of what you'll find within:

  • Mike Jay dives into the strange history of 'sane hallucinations'
  • Martin Shough investigates the ball lightning enigma, and the way science has approached the mystery as compared to the UFO phenomenon
  • Joanne Conman discusses her revolutionary theory about ancient Egyptian astronomy
  • Daniel Bourke compares modern accounts of post-death consciousness with the descriptions of the world beyond found in the Tibetan Book of the Dead
  • Cat Vincent examines the rise of pop culture-based, hyper-real religions
  • Blair MacKenzie Blake revisits the strange history of the Shaver Mystery craze
  • Lucy Ryder explores the history of 'corpse roads' through archaeology and folklore
  • Ray Grasse asks the question: what does it mean when weird things happen?
  • Martin J. Clemens looks into reports of a 24,000-year-old pyramid in Indonesia
  • Robert M. Schoch explores the nature of death and consciousness
  • Alistair Coombs goes in search of the 'Cult of the Cosmic Bull'
  • Greg Taylor reports on the 'dying light' witnessed by some people at the passing of a loved one

Thanks for everyone's support of the Darklore series - it helps to fund this website, and also provides financial support for contributors so that they can continue researching and writing about the stranger side of life.

I'm sure y'all will enjoy this latest instalment in the series. For those of you who remain unconvinced, I'll publish some sample articles at the Darklore website (and here at TDG as well) in the coming week.

Enjoy!!

(Note: Leaving this up on the front page for a few days, regular daily updates can still be accessed via the 'river of news' page view.)

News Briefs 04-09-2014

Does the phrase 'running on fumes' imply fatigue makes you more Steampunk?

Quote of the Day:

"We need shamans, and if society doesn't provide them, the universe will."

~Joe Lewels, Ph.D

More Evidence of the Intelligence of Birds: Cockatoos Learn to Make Wooden Tools to Reach Food

Cockatoo using a tool to reach food

Yet more evidence supporting the intelligence of birds (or at least, certain species). Figaro, a Goffin’s cockatoo (an Indonesian parrot species) was observed by researchers to have spontaneously started to create thin stick tools out of wooden aviary beams and use them for raking in nuts out of his reach. The researchers wondered whether other cockatoos could learn from Figaro's behaviour, and so let them observe what he was doing.

The cockatoos were placed in front of a metal cage containing a nut and given a small flat piece of wood.

After several attempts to reach the nut by poking the unwieldy piece of wood under the cage, the birds quickly realised that something smaller was required, and set about making a smaller tool.

Cockatoo Figaro was the first to start sculpting sticks to reach the food but his actions were soon copied by birds who were watching.

And researchers at Oxford University and the University of Vienna found that the copying birds began to refine the technique, changing Figaro’s slow raking process to a quick, more efficient, flick.

Link: Bird-brained? Cockatoos filmed making wooden tools to reach food

Related:

News Briefs 03-09-2014

Enjoy.

Quote of the Day:

"It’s hard to get lost when you don’t know where you’re going.”

~ Jim Jarmusch

The Origin of 'A Glitch in the Matrix': Philip K. Dick Discusses Déjà Vu and Living in a Simulation, in 1977

The Matrix

The 1999 blockbuster The Matrix has provided plenty of great lines to popular culture, from "buckle your seatbelt Dorothy" to "dodge this". But perhaps one of the most enduring has been "a glitch in the Matrix", referring to the scene in which Neo (Keanu Reeves) experiences déjà vu with a black cat. His companions, more experienced in the computer-simulated reality of the Matrix, are put on edge by this, explaining to him that "déjà vu is usually a glitch in the Matrix, it happens when they change something".

The terms "a glitch in the Matrix" is now used often when people experience something distinctly weird - so much so, that it's even the official name of a subreddit devoted to Fortean weirdness.

The Matrix draws from a deep well of influences, starting with the 17th century philosopher René Descartes and ending with a melting pot of popular modern culture, including Grant Morrison's The Invisibles, William Gibson's Neuromancer, Mamoru Oshii's Ghost in the Shell and the collected works of Philip K. Dick. And it is the latter who seems to have been the origin of the idea that "déjà vu is usually a glitch in the Matrix". At a 1977 appearance at the Metz Science Fiction Convention in France, Dick told of his own strange experiences, including recovered memories and déjà vu - and the personal revelation that these experiences were evidence of alternative universes:

We are living in a computer-programmed reality, and the only clue we have to it is when some variable is changed, and some alteration in our reality occurs. We would have the overwhelming impression that we were re-living the present - déjà vu - perhaps in precisely the same way: hearing the same words, saying the same words. I submit that these impressions are valid and significant, and I will even say this: such an impression is a clue, that in some past time-point, a variable was changed - re-programmed as it were - and that because of this, an alternative world branched off.

Were the Wachowski siblings, who wrote the movie, aware of Dick's comments? Or is the similarity between these ideas just one more example of a 'glitch in the Matrix'...?

News Briefs 02-09-2014

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Quote of the Day:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new.

Steve Jobs