Novelty stores: 5 weird bookshops every book lover will adore

venice

Where do you get your fiction fix – the library? The local bookstore? Online? Well, it’s time to step it up a notch: sometimes the shop itself is as fascinating as the titles you’re there to purchase. Just look at Venice’s Libraria Acqua Alta, pictured above! Here’s five more weird bookshops from around the world that you’ll give your first editions to visit…
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Wonder Web! 23 Chrome extensions that make surfing a joy

best Chrome extensions

If you’re a Chrome user, chances are good that you’ve already got a handy extension or two—but you can always use a few more to enhance your online experience. Here are our picks for 23 of the most useful Chrome extensions currently out there. Get ready to start downloading, because these just might change how you use the internet.

1. HTTPS Everywhere

HTTPS Everywhere automatically switches thousands of sites from insecure “http” to secure “https”, making your browsing more secure.
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19 surprising facts about Raiders of the Lost Ark you probably didn’t know

Indiana Jones

When Raiders of the Lost Ark hit the theaters in 1981, it introduced us to the whip-cracking archaeologist Indiana Jones and kicked off one of the most popular film series of all time. The film was a major critical and popular success, earning the title of highest-grossing film of the year as well as a few Academy Awards. Its popularity remains strong today, and is often named as the best action-adventure in film history.

We love sharing facts about movie magic (like these 82 mind-blowing movie facts), so we’ve rounded up 19 surprising facts about the filming of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Next time you watch it, you’ll love it even more. Let’s get cracking!

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7 remarkably inventive ways authors have promoted their books

salesperson

The book market’s a tough one: with supermarkets and online retailers driving down prices and publishing houses looking to their marketing teams rather than their editors for acquisition advice, it’s getting harder and harder to for writers to sell fiction to publishers and for publishers to shift books – especially more literary titles – to the public. But that means that writers, publicists and bookstores are getting ever more inventive in their sales techniques: here are seven real-life tricks that have been used to catch the customers’ attention – some formally and intellectually innovative, and some, well, just plain old audacious.

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The 24 best music websites for rocking your world

bestmusicwebsites

Bob Marley famously said, “One good thing about music, when it hits you, you feel no pain.” If there’s one man who knows what he’s talking about, when it comes to top tunes, it’s Marley. Question is, what are the best places to get hit by the magic of music on the Web? Google “the best music websites” and you get over 300 million results. Happily, you don’t have to wade through them all to find the best because we’ve done the hard work for you. So, crank up the volume and get on down with the best booty shaking sites online.

1. Plug.dj

Now you can be the DJ

2. StereoMood

Choose the tunes that best suit your mood

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The ad man guide to firing up your creativity

admanwritingtips

You’ve been working like a Duracell bunny all week on five different ad campaigns. Your Art Director has made your concepts look like bad expressionism and your Creative Director is questioning your copywriting talents with phrases like “did you go out drinking last night?” and “Maybe it was cool in the Eighties”. When the weekend arrives it feels like you’ve jumped aboard a lifeboat.

For the next forty-eight hours, you want to forget work and write some fiction, but your brain is mush and your enthusiasm has done a runner. What do you do? It’s a tough one, but one great thing about working in advertising is that you have to hit deadlines. And to hit deadlines you need to fire up your muse. Here are five foolproof techniques, which I’ve used in the last decade to make my clients happy.

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You won’t believe how trippy this digital artist makes old photos look

surreal6

“I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past,” US President Thomas Jefferson once said.

Well, now thanks to Luke Robson, a British 20 year old digital collage artist, we can get the best of both worlds. Luke has mixed the past with a trippy vision of the future by going crazy with old pics. A maestro at digital compositing and colour theory, he creates collage pieces, which though retro in style, are futuristic in subject matter. To find out how he works his magic, we hooked up with the man himself. Here’s what he had to say.

digitalartYour work is an amazingly trippy combination of retro photos and intense colours and scenes, what inspired you to create your collages?

I’ve always enjoyed old-fashioned vintage photography and love to see images of people or settings or even a situations that can no longer be seen today. For this reason I wanted to bring these old photographs back to life, add some colour to them and manipulate them into my own form of surrealism. I find it so much more interesting to create a scene that’s complete surrealistic and as far away from reality as I can imagine. Usually, I find inspiration from the original source images themselves.

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Rockin’ shots: The stories behind music’s most iconic photos: No.3

iconicmusicpics

The third photo in our series on music’s most iconic photographs epitomizes the rock star legend lifestyle. Hardly surprising when you discover that it features, Led Zeppelin, a group Danny Goldberg, vice president of the group’s Swan Song label said weren’t famous by accident, but “liked being the biggest band in the world”. So, who was the lensman who caught this iconic moment on film?

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Writers who partied: The myth of the lonesome author destroyed

PartyWriters1

You’re probably familiar with the stereotype of the lonesome and reclusive author that hides from society while penning poignant works of genius–and yes, it’s actually quite common for writers to be introverted. But it’s also common for writers to be outgoing and social, wanting to be out and about in the world, mingling with the people and experiences that they write about. And then there are these writers–those that took “being social” to the next level.

Each of the writers on this list were known for their hard-partying ways–some partied sober, while others partied by experimenting with alcohol or drugs–but each of them smashed the stereotype of the lonesome writer into pieces. So let’s take a look at a few of literature’s top party animals.

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29 American customs that surprise the rest of the world

bizarreamericancustoms

You might think over the last few years America’s popularity around the world has taken something of a battering. Yet the annual Anholt-GfK Nation Brands Index, an international survey measuring the popularity of countries around the world by polling 20,000 people across 20 countries, says otherwise. In fact, in this year’s survey, the United States came second behind Germany and just ahead of the UK. But despite all the love and respect for many aspects of the American way of life, there are many American customs that non-Americans find, frankly, bizarre. To see for yourself, here are 29 recently shared on Reddit.

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