Photo of the Day

In testing cavalry swords, the blade is struck under the same conditions as the bayonet (No 2), is placed in a machine* and pressed on the top while in a vertical position, until it is shortened four inches (No. 1), and must bear a 28lb. vertical pressure without bending. As the result of a investigation instituted by the Government, was recently discovered that in pressing on blade so that it bent first on one side, then the other–a common practice among infantry officers–the fibre of the metal was strained; when, therefore, the vertical pressure test is applied and the blade sprung, a small cross is stamped on the convex side to denote that the sword may be sprung only on that side.

*This device was known as an “eprouvette”.

“Swords: How they are made and something about curious ones” by Frank Lamburn, Pearson’s Magazine, Vol. 2, July to December, 1896


Music of the Day



If the embed of the audio doesn’t show up, here is the link to the page. This is a song entirely composed of sounds from a washing machine. Written by Matmos, a Baltimore-based conceptual art and electronic music duo, this piece is just one of many that make up an album called Ultimate Care II featuring a washing machine from the duo’s basement.

Matmos often creates music from unusual sources. In the past they’ve used cow parts and canisters of helium as sources for their sounds. You can read more about the duo in the link below.



I’m Back!

I’ve not forgotten about you, my friends! I’ve been having a pretty busy summer so I haven’t had much time to schedule things, but worry not, I’ve bookmarked many exciting things and have hundreds more old ones to share with you all. Hopefully I can post with more regularity now that my summer class is almost over.