Weekend Hangover: From Doctor Who to Fart Odors, 18 Stories You Might Have Missed

Monday, July 14, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Ian McKellen
Whatup, Holmes?

Ian McKellen as a 93 year-old Sherlock Holmes may see long life as a benidiction, but we have to wonder if he still wants to cum a batch. This was but one of the weekend thread stories you might have missed, compiled with the aid of Kyle LeClair, and now it's time for the rest. Tipsters this week include skrag2112, Gallen_Dugall, Citrus King, CobraCommander, NOT.DrAbraxas, brownkidd, Anyone00, scockery, DrAbraxas, SlyDante777, fury_cartoon, donnaryoko,andre_morelo

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Guided Bullets Can Change Course in Flight

Friday, July 11, 2014 at 11:30 am

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Don't tell Gene Simmons, but the futuristic bullets he fired in Runaway are nearly ready.

The system combines a maneuverable bullet and a real-time guidance system to track and deliver the projectile to the target, allowing the bullet to change path during flight to compensate for any unexpected factors that may drive it off course.
It also has a cute nickname: DARPA is calling it EXACTO, a sort-of acronym for Extreme Accuracy Tasked Ordnance. And yet another obstacle for people with poor aim to become lethal snipers is broken down.

Check out footage from a recent test...

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The 14 Coolest Things on the Harry Potter WB Studio Tour in London

Thursday, July 3, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Although the primary purpose of my trip to England was to see family, my wife and I had a special incentive too - as a birthday present, my cousin managed to procure us tickets to the UK Warner Bros. Studio Tour in Watford, just outside of London. Now, unlike studio tours here in Hollywood, this was a show-and-tell with exactly one topic: Harry Potter. But on that one topic, it had every damn thing you can imagine short of a personal greeting from Alan Rickman. The studio isn't allowed to have anything that be considered a "ride" - that would infringe on Universal Studios' exclusive international rights to same - but it does have as many props, costumes, miniatures, wigs, effects and other doodads as could presumably be secured, and it presents them in a way that puts most collections of far more acclaimed artworks to shame.

You can probably picture some of what's there already. But I'm here to show you the best things you might not have expected...

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Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: Robots, Revivals and No More Reboots!

Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 8:00 am

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Luke's mother-in-law is former LAPD, a licensed property appraiser and a self-described crazy cat lady. None of which has prepared her for TR readers. All questions and answers are real.

Well, while you all were not looking, I went out of town and back to Mexico. Stayed again at the Melia resort in Puerto Vallarta. I will have to say things have improved since the comments I made in March 2014. This time we had a clock and coffee-maker in the room, better ocean view and my mom had rice pudding restored at the desert table. She was very happy this time.

Anyway, I want to give a shout out to the Activities staff at the resort. They work so hard and are very friendly and helpful. You should see the smile on this one guy named Raul. Raul reads Topless Robot and likes X-Men. The regular staff was training high school kids on summer break and all seemed to be going well. While at the resort, I got to meet Dino the Dino from The Flintstones (above) - he is the big purple one and I'm the big yellow one (no, I'm not Big Bird).

So now let's see what my minions have come up with for questions this week.

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Super Terrific Japanese Thing: Kobian, the Robot Comedian

Wednesday, June 18, 2014 at 5:20 pm

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Takanishi Laboratory/Waseda University

In typical Japanese fashion, Kobian's full name is actually "Bipedal Humanoid Robot That Makes Humans Laugh With Use of the Method of Comedy and Affects Their Psychological State Actively." Through exhaustive research, scientists tried to figure out what makes people laugh and see if they could program the robot to duplicate that.

Scientists being scientists, their study of humor led to conclusions like: "Part of the methods for making humans laugh are published by comedians or researchers. In order to achieve a robot's behavior for making humans laugh based on these methods, we studied 6 books[16-21] in which the methods for comedy and the ways for funny conversations are gathered comprehensively. These methods in the books are picked up from wide range of skits or ways of expressions, but most of the methods are commonly the same between other contents. We extracted the methods that are especially common in these books and show them below."

Apparently it worked for Japanese audience, but what about Topless Roboteers? It's time for us to find out...

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The Scariest Teddy Bear of All Time

Monday, June 16, 2014 at 3:47 pm

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I'm not even talking about that face, above, which is nightmare fueling enough.

No...this thing has an action feature that, once seen, will never be unetched from your retinas. This toy makes McFarlane Toys look like Fisher Price Little People. And it just sold for $712.

This is a true test of self-loathing, folks. Do you want to see the toy in action? Then proceed...

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Weekend Hangover: 12 Stories You Might have Missed, From Aquaman to Dracula

Monday, June 16, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Compiled as always with the help of Kyle LeClair, this weekend's styories saw the casting of a new Aquaman, a Hello Kitty collection that repels tomcats, a Disneylike Doctor or 13 (above), and cricket chips.

Tipsters this week include: Gallen_Dugall, SlyDante777, Citrus_King, Dr.Gonzo82, troi, Anyone00, Timely Flower-Hermit, andre_morelo

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The Sniper App for Google Glass, Because That Couldn't Possibly Go Very Wrong

Wednesday, June 11, 2014 at 5:30 pm

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I guess pretty soon we'll be saying that guns don't kill people, but Google does - TrackingPoint labs have figured out an app for the wearable device that helps less accurate marksmen account for wind resistance, firing around corners, and other potential factors that might keep somebody crazy with a gun from killing you the first time.

These'll be great for the military, but I'm not sure the kind of person who's likely to be an early adapter to Google Glass is the kind of person I want armed. TrackingPoint's timing is impeccable, no?

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6-9-14 Weekend Hangover: 17 Stories You Might Have Missed

Monday, June 9, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Be honest, you miss her as Mary Jane...

It's the stories you might have missed last week and over the weekend! Compiled with the aid of Kyle LeClair, this week's list includes stories on sushi dating, Beavis and Butt-head, Ant-Man, giant ancient crocodiles, Spider-Man erections and more.

Tips submitted by the likes of troi, SlyDante777, Citrus_King, rkwsuperstar, Dr.Gonzo82, GreggoryBasore, NOT.DrAbraxas, andre_morelo, skrag2112, Gallen_Dugall.

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U.S. Government Seeks Sarcasm Detector, Because That's a Really Useful Device

Thursday, June 5, 2014 at 11:30 am

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The poor Secret Service. When they eavesdrop on our social media feeds, they have a hard time telling how sincere we all are.

It's heartbreaking to hear such a thing, and I really hope somebody can come up with something that will allow them to come to such important conclusions. After all, it's far too much to expect of aspiring agents that they be in any way versed in human nature, or have the discernment to understand what constitutes a real threat and what doesn't. We certainly do not pay them for that. I can understand why they would want a computer program to do this crucial part of the job for them, especially if it's software which works with their cutting-edge, advanced Internet Explorer 8 browsers.

I wonder how they sleep through the night, worrying not about the odds of taking a bullet for the president, but the extreme hardship of understanding jokes.

h/t Anyone00