Friday Links

SMBC Comics is frequently silly or bizarre, but cartoonist Zach Weiner also captures a lot of profound ideas in his art. This comic is the most simple and elegant illustration I’ve ever seen of the Technological Singularity and the rise of artificial intelligence. (Or at least, that’s how I interpret it, and this is my blog, so clearly I’m right.) The last panel has stuck in my brain for days.

How do you get into space? Why, strap two 747s together to make the biggest wingspan in human history, then launch a rocket from its back! So says billionaire Paul Allen, who recently founded Stratolaunch, a new competitor of Virgin Galactic that hopes to put humans in orbit by 2020.

Rats show a lot more empathy than you might expect, says NPR.

Richard Burton wasn’t the only professional badass. Here’s a video of Bruce Lee with an…inventive…new way to light matches.

Felicity Aston is now just days (hours?) from becoming the first woman to reach the South Pole alone. And she’s tweeting her expedition! Normally I’m not a huge fan of Twitter, but that is cool. Recent message from Antarctica:

The sastrugi have gone and the snow was covered in bobbles of frost today that sparkled like a carpet of diamonds.

Got any links of your own to share? Put ’em in the comments! Self-pimpage is allowed.

Happy Friday, everyone, and have a phenomenal weekend. See you on Monday!

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