Binoculars make researching what is directly in front of you much easier

Phones are no longer the only consumer product to be made from bananas! Researchers in Brazil have developed a plastic from the cellulose in bananas and other plants that can be used in cars. (Wired)

Content farms do not grow bananas, pineapples, or any other plant matter. Instead they serve as sometimes-surprising-but-mostly-predictable cultural mirrors. “We are, it seems, avid TV watchers who adore sports, pets, and our families, worry about our jobs, and suffer from hypochondria.” (Slate)

The 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire was last week and the Gray Lady (now with paywall!) takes a look at the media’s role in shaping public perception and even includes some snazzy primary documents.

Speaking of the Gray Lady, she has good things to say about Sunday night’s Japan benefit concert. Notably, the effort raised $34,000 for Japan Society’s Earthquake Relief Fund.

Rejection burns like spilled coffee, according to a new study. “No other negative emotion, not anger and not fear, elicits reactions in the pain matrix of the brain.” (Bloomberg)

Since Columbians never complain about anything, this might come as a shock: hating similar things is a great way to make friends. (NY Mag)

Superstar in residence Jeffrey Sachs recounts his recent trip to Egypt and Tunisia, prescribing economic reforms that he hopes will sustain the fledgling democracies. (NYT)

Oracular Spectacular via Wikimedia Commons

p.s. Housing starts today!

JJ lounge undergoing transformation this morning