COOL SH*T

Volume 218

SM1L3Y N3WS 4ROM D0WN UNDER.

You know the feeling – you’re looking at ordering a new number plate for your wheels and thinking, if only I could have an emoji on it as well. No? Well, regardless, for drivers in Queensland Australia it’s soon to become a reality. To begin with, you’ll only be able to choose from the crying laugh, a winking face, sunglasses, heart eyes and the standard smiling face so you’ll have to wait a bit longer if you’re hoping to whack an eggplant on there.

About bloody time!

Speaking of emojis, ‘isn’t it ridiculous that there’s five variations of a mailbox, a floppy disc emoji and a fax emoji, but no period emoji?’

These are the words of Susanne Legena, the CEO of Plan International Australia (a girls-focused development charity) when discussing why there is a need for an emoji for periods. A number of options were put forward their campaign but in the end, a blood droplet emoji has been approved by Unicode, the emoji powers that be. Arriving early 2019.

Guns don’t kill people, tampons do…?

Keeping with the theme of breaking down period taboos, I came across this recently (although it was created a number of years ago). A couple of teenagers created this game – where you fight off menstrual haters by throwing tampons at them – to help normalise periods and banish shame and embarrassment. As explained when you play the game, ‘although the concept of the game may be strange, it’s stranger that society has accepted and normalised guns and violence through video games, yet we still find tampons and menstruation unspeakable.’ It’s also bloody addictive.

Fancy a pint?

Despite there being over 3,500 pubs in London, finding one that’s just right isn’t easy. A Pint In London is a simple narrative-led game created by Londoner Ana Kinsella, that takes you on a multiple choice journey in search of the perfect watering hole. Have a go and broaden your go-to list.

This Person Does Not Exist.

This is a weird, fascinating and creepy website. Click on it and you will be shown a hyper-real but completely fake person. Refresh it as many times as you like and you will get a new face each time. It’s done using a special kind of AI algorithm called generative adversarial networks (GANs). It was created by an Uber software engineer called Philip Wang, who wanted to raise public awareness of the technology. It’s mesmerising.

Pinterest Takes A Stand.

The role of social media platforms and the spread of misinformation is a hot topic right now and Pinterest have decided to take a stand.

One topic that’s got attention at the moment is the spread of anti-vaccine misinformation on Facebook – a quick search for ‘vaccine’ brings up a number of groups containing bad information that contradicts scientific evidence. Pinterest decided to take action and a search for ‘vaccine’ simply won’t return any results – they’ve added it to their ‘blacklist’ of ‘polluted’ terms.

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