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My Week on the All-Emoji Diet

Kelsey Rexroat:

Including the chili pepper, there are 59 food-themed emoji. What are they? How can they be assembled into recipes? And most importantly, could someone live on emoji alone?

I had to know. I undertook a challenge:

  1. For seven days, I would only eat foods represented by emoji.
  2. I would eat every emoji food by the end of the seven days.

This doesn’t end in hospitalization or anything, I just like it because it’s a preposterous idea.

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Hi Score Girl Halts Serialization After SNK's Copyright Charges

Anime News Network:

The editor-in-chief of Square Enix’s Monthly Big Gangan posted a message to its readers announcing that the magazine will temporarily halt serialization of Rensuke Oshikiri’s Hi Score Girl in light of alleged copyright violations. SNK Playmore had filed a complaint, asserting that the manga features over 100 instances of characters from The King of Fighters, Samurai Spirits (Samurai Shodown), and other fighting games owned by SNK. Police searched the publisher’s headquarters last Tuesday.

An SNK Playmore representative told ITmedia News that there were “absolutely no” requests or discussions by Square Enix to obtain consent to use SNK characters. The manga also uses characters from CAPCOM’s Street Fighter II, Sega’s Virtua Fighter, Namco’s Genpei Tōma Den, and other games. ITmedia News contacted CAPCOM, Sega, and Bandai Namco Games, and each one said that it gave formal consent for the manga to use its games’ characters.

That they properly licensed the other characters but not SNK’s is probably the most bizarre part of this story.

(In case you weren’t aware, Square Enix has a manga publishing division inherited from Enix, and they actually publish a lot.)

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Madden ratings guru has the players' attention

Arnie Stapleton, AP:

[Donny] Moore is the “ratings czar” for “Madden NFL,” the man responsible for making sure the popular video game’s virtual avatars accurately reflect their real-life counterparts.

Moore uses all sorts of metrics and measurements to come up with ratings. Then, he tweaks the numbers weekly after watching all the games and pondering feedback from fans and even the players themselves.

Among the guys he underestimated were Washington running back Alfred Morris and Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz, both of whom started a season with mid-60s ratings and finished in the high 80s. It works the other way, too. Ray Rice started last season at 95 and finished at 82.

I love how apparently there’s just this one guy who makes up every single number in that game.

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Dominic Nahr took some photos for TIME at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, which suffered meltdowns in 2011 after being struck by tsunamis:

Japan, Okuma, 2014. A TEPCO worker stands inside the central control room of reactor 1 and 2. Both reactors overheated, causing meltdowns. The melt down in reactor 1 eventually led to a hydrogen explosion that released large amounts of radioactive material in the air.

There are some pretty neat photos in the set, but it’s all very harrowing. Three and a half years later and they’re still cleaning it up.

Dominic Nahr took some photos for TIME at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, which suffered meltdowns in 2011 after being struck by tsunamis:

Japan, Okuma, 2014. A TEPCO worker stands inside the central control room of reactor 1 and 2. Both reactors overheated, causing meltdowns. The melt down in reactor 1 eventually led to a hydrogen explosion that released large amounts of radioactive material in the air.

There are some pretty neat photos in the set, but it’s all very harrowing. Three and a half years later and they’re still cleaning it up.

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Does a Company Own Its Facebook Likes?

Joshua Brustein, Bloomberg Businessweek:

The story (of the legal dispute, not the television show) begins in 2008, when Stacey Mattocks started a fan page for The Game. Soon thereafter, the show went off the air, but the Facebook page lived on. When BET decided to revive The Game in 2010, the network reached out to Mattocks, offering to give her part-time work maintaining her page as the show’s official fan page. BET wasn’t eager to start from scratch: Mattocks had already gathered about 2 million “likes,” according to court documents.

Mattocks and BET signed a deal giving the company administrative access to the page; each agreed not to lock the other out. BET employees and Mattocks worked together, quickly amassing 4 million additional “likes.” But Mattocks wanted a full-time job, and she decided to play hardball to get it. She revoked BET’s administrative access, saying she’d give it back when they agreed to pay her an acceptable salary. The company responded by starting its own page. It also asked Facebook to shut down Mattocks’s page—it contained copyrighted material—and have all the “likes” transferred to its own page. Facebook obliged and Mattocks sued, arguing that she should have the right to capitalize on the business opportunity she had created by getting a lot of people to approve of her page.

Where was the futurist who predicted mundane shit like this? Flying cars my butt.

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On August 16, Janis Ian and Tommy Emmanuel performed “At Seventeen” and “Over the Rainbow” at the Philadelphia Folk Festival. Tommy’s improv accompaniment is pretty good.

"At Seventeen" is a famous song so I knew the first couple of lines and general melody of it, but I didn’t really know the song until listening to it here. And I gotta say, the verse 4 lyrics are outstanding. The metaphor is so perfectly bitter and impersonal, and she slips “debentures” into a soft rock song for crying out loud.

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The mystery of the falling teen birth rate

Sarah Kliff, Vox:

For five years now, America’s teen birth rate has plummeted at an unprecedented rate, falling faster and faster. Between 2007 and 2013, the number of babies born to teens annually fell by 38.4 percent, according to research firm Demographic Intelligence. This drop occurred in tandem with steep declines in the abortion rate. That suggests that the drop isn’t the product of more teenagers terminating pregnancies. More simply, fewer girls are getting pregnant.

But there’s something uniquely frustrating about the recent, steep decline in teen birth rates: nobody knows why it’s happened.

She then runs through a number of theories, ranging from somewhat unsatisfying to deeply unsatisfying.

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In Focus had a nice photo set the other day of the Wright brothers and their development of airplanes. This one’s from the Library of Congress:

First flight: 120 feet in 12 seconds, on December 17, 1903. This photograph shows man’s first powered, controlled, sustained flight. Orville Wright at the controls of the machine, lying prone on the lower wing with hips in the cradle which operated the wing-warping mechanism. Wilbur Wright running alongside to balance the machine, has just released his hold on the forward upright of the right wing. The starting rail, the wing-rest, a coil box, and other items needed for flight preparation are visible behind the machine. Orville Wright preset the camera and had John T. Daniels squeeze the rubber bulb, tripping the shutter.

That’s basically how we both fly and take pictures these days too.

In Focus had a nice photo set the other day of the Wright brothers and their development of airplanes. This one’s from the Library of Congress:

First flight: 120 feet in 12 seconds, on December 17, 1903. This photograph shows man’s first powered, controlled, sustained flight. Orville Wright at the controls of the machine, lying prone on the lower wing with hips in the cradle which operated the wing-warping mechanism. Wilbur Wright running alongside to balance the machine, has just released his hold on the forward upright of the right wing. The starting rail, the wing-rest, a coil box, and other items needed for flight preparation are visible behind the machine. Orville Wright preset the camera and had John T. Daniels squeeze the rubber bulb, tripping the shutter.

That’s basically how we both fly and take pictures these days too.

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Who Invented the Ice Bucket Challenge?

Josh Levin of Slate searches YouTube and Instagram for a whole bunch of videos of people dumping ice water on themselves or other people:

"Where does a phenomenon begin?"

That’s the question ESPN’s Tom Rinaldi seeks to answer in a long SportsCenter feature on the ice bucket challenge, which has reportedly raised more than $50 million for ALS charities in less than a month. Rinaldi says that it began “with one name”: Pete Frates. A former Boston College baseball player, Frates was diagnosed with ALS in 2011. On July 31 of this year, he challenged some friends and celebrities (including NFL quarterbacks Tom Brady and Matt Ryan) to take the ice bucket challenge to “strike out ALS.” As my Slate colleague Will Oremus pointed out, various outlets have since claimed that Frates invented or inspired the challenge, with the Boston Globe, BuzzFeed, and MLB.com joining ESPN in labeling Frates as the stimulus for the chilly, charitable fad.

This origin myth, while heartwarming, just isn’t true. The real story of how the ice bucket challenge came to dominate your Facebook feed takes nothing away from Frates’ inspirational message, or the fact that his personal struggle helped draw celebrities to the cause and drive charitable contributions. But focusing on “one name” obscures another fascinating tale, one that illustrates how movements mutate and evolve as they travel across the Web.

(the answer is that there is no answer)