What We’re Reading: May 1, 2014

Today’s What We’re Reading features a visual history of data storage, documenting the stories of the men who finished last in the Tour de France, 10 crazy jobs that will exist in the future, and much more!

History Links

The Origins of Michael Jackson’s Moonwalk

Video at Open Culture: “The line-up includes artists lucky enough to have left lasting footprints—Cab Calloway, Sammy Davis Jr., Fred Astaire, as well as those we’d do well to rediscover: Rubberneck Holmes, Earl ‘Snakehips’ Tucker, Buck and Bubbles….”

From Player Pianos to the Cloud: The History of Data Storage

Mashable documents the history of data storage in one visual, from the punch card in 1940, to the floppy disk, to our current medium, the cloud, which holds an estimated 1 exabyte of data.

Turn, Turn, Turn

Roy Rogers reviews the new AMC Revolutionary War series at the Junto. See also the review by Carolyn Eastman in Perspectives.

The Art of Losing

A history of the men who finish last in the Tour de France has been written, reports the London Review of Books.

Atari Cartridges Found in New Mexico Landfill

Hundreds of copies of E.T., the “worst video game ever made and blamed for contributing to the downfall of the video game industry in the 1980s” unearthed! Reuters reports, “Atari is believed to have been saddled with most of the 5 million E.T. game cartridges produced. According to New York Times reports at the time, the game manufacturer buried the games in the New Mexico desert in the middle of the night.”

Exploring the Decaying Ruins of Brother Island, NYC’s Last Unknown Place

A photographer documents the ruins of Riverside Hospital, opened in 1885 to quarantine smallpox patients.

Bring Back Train Robberies

Jon Methven at the Atlantic: “The main difference in train robbery, now as opposed to 200 years ago, is that no one robs trains anymore, which has resulted in citizens taking public transportation for granted.”

Arts and Culture

The Collecting of African American Art IX: Collecting Black: An Anachronism

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, presents this video of an interview with Darryl Atwell, a collector of African American art.

Overcoming Looting and Years of War, Iraq Museum Moves to Reopen

Plans to reopen the museum in 2014 do not include displaying the most valuable items, from Ur and the tombs of Nimrud.

A Journey through Jewish Worlds

An exhibit of Jewish manuscripts, scrolls, and lavishly decorated marriage contracts.

Iceland’s Penis Museum Curator on What The Final Member Gets Wrong

“The founder of Iceland’s Phallological Museum, famous for his quest to add a human penis to the collection, feels deceived by the documentary The Final Member,” the Daily Beast reports.’”

MetPublications

The Metropolitan Museum of Art provides the full text of some of its books and other publications on its website, including The Age of Caravaggio, The Age of Napoleon, and Al-Andalus.

Year-2000Fun and Off-Beat

10 Crazy Jobs That Will Exist in the Future

Jobs include a nostalgist (interior decorators who design spaces to reflect different decades), a telesurgeon (specializes in performing surgeries in patients in far off locations), and a healthcare navigator (to inform patients about healthcare choices).

17 Totally Fetch Facts You Might Not Know About Mean Girls

In honor of the 10th anniversary of the movie Mean Girls (now a cult phenomenon), Buzzfeed has a list of the most unexpected facts you may not know about the movie.

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