Film/Video/New Media · Human-ities · Performativity · Social/Politics

Deep Inside: The Statistics of Porn (USA)

For the first time, a massive data set of 10,000 porn stars has been extracted from the world’s largest database of adult films and performers. I’ve spent the last six months analyzing it to discover the truth about what the average performer looks like, what they do on film, and how their role has evolved over the last forty years.

The average male and female performer are the same height as the average American man and woman: 5’10″ and 5’5″ respectively. However, porn stars are quite a bit lighter. At 117 lbs, the average female performer is a considerable 48 lbs under the national average for women, and the average male, at 167.5 lbs, weighs 27 lbs less than the national average for men. So, just how were these porn stars’ weights determined when they were typed, probably with one hand, into the database?

The Internet Adult Film Database’s data is culled from various sources, including performers’ modelling profiles and the information they give during interviews in the porn films themselves. So presumably at some point the heaviest woman in my sample, who weighs 719 lbs (about the same as two giant pandas), and the lightest woman, who weighs 10 times less, at 74 lbs (the same as the average American 10-year-old girl), mentioned their weights, and an owl-eared fan heard them and rushed to the database to pop them in.

Excerpt from a study by Jon Millward. Continue HERE

Human-ities · Technology

From “Operation Wetback” To Newtown: Tracing The Hick Fascism Of The NRA

Mark Ames: Until now, I have largely avoided getting dragged down into the gun control debate, in part because gun proliferation doesn’t explain why “going postal” first exploded into the culture in the late 1980s, and has worked its way into the American DNA ever since. Gun control or lack thereof doesn’t explain why these kinds of rampage shootings only appeared in the late Reagan era and spread ever since then. And there must have been my own personal prejudices too — I grew up with guns, and despite a couple of bad episodes involving guns and a drunken violent stepfather, I have a reflexive contempt for people who haven’t gone shooting and tell you that gun control laws are the answer.

Well, guess what? Their knee-jerk solution is more right than mine.

Passing gun restrictions today probably wouldn’t do much to slow down rampage massacres, at least not for awhile — but the politics of sweeping gun control laws could have a huge transformative effect over time. It’s no longer impossible for me to ignore that fact.

Which means it’s also no longer possible for me to ignore the National Rifle Association, and its hick fascism politics that’ve been poisoning our culture ever since the NRA’s infamous “coup” in 1977, when the NRA was taken over by far-right fanatics led by a convicted murderer and onetime US Border Guards chief named Harlon Carter — whose previous claim to fame was when he led a massive crackdown on Mexican immigrant laborers called “Operation Wetback.” That’s not a typo by the way.

Excerpt from an article written by Mark Ames at NSFWCorp. Continue HERE

Architectonic · Bio · Human-ities · Science

Native Americans and Northern Europeans more closely related than previously thought


Using genetic analyses, scientists have discovered that Northern European populations—including British, Scandinavians, French, and some Eastern Europeans—descend from a mixture of two very different ancestral populations, and one of these populations is related to Native Americans. This discovery helps fill gaps in scientific understanding of both Native American and Northern European ancestry, while providing an explanation for some genetic similarities among what would otherwise seem to be very divergent groups. This research was published in the November 2012 issue of the Genetics Society of America’s journal Genetics.

Text and Image via Archaeology News Network. Continue HERE

Design · Science · Social/Politics

The Social and Fractal Dimension of ZIP Codes

ZIP codes have been around for less than fifty years. In addition to allowing future historians to ascertain that the television show “Beverly Hills 90210″ must have been created no earlier than 1963, ZIP codes have become part of our culture, organizing our locations and determining the flow of mail.

But ZIP codes are not created randomly. There is an order and a structure to this mail system. Let’s use this nearly-fifty-year anniversary as an opportunity to examine the quantitative aspects of ZIP codes.

One quick way to look at ZIP codes is by seeing how each part of a ZIP code defines a part of our country. Ben Fry, of Fathom, created a simple visualization called zipdecode to do just this. As you type each successive digit of a ZIP code and see what regions of the United States it describes. For example, if you’re typing in 64110 (Kansas City), you can see what parts of the United States begin with ‘6’.

Text by Samuel Arbesman on WIRED. Continue HERE