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Month: December, 2016

Read this before you give your child a HYPHENATED last name! The horrifying secret that the reptilian ruling class royal families don’t want you to know!


Here’s a problem we’ve all faced: you are a member of a noble family, and so is your spouse: clearly, your child must inherit both of your venerable royal surnames, but how?

One solution is to combine both names into a new hyphenated name.

But this really just kicks the problem down the road—it’s not feasible to double the length of a surname with every generation.

If you do that, you’ll end up with a name like these (real) people:

In fact, if hyphenation is rigorously followed, then after 10 generations a single last name would take over an hour to write out by hand.

Fortunately, there is a simple solution!


This solution has a natural inspiration: in mammalian biology, even though a child inherits genetic information from each parent, the size of the genome does not double with each generation. Instead, the chromosomes are mixed together (“recombined”), and each parent only contributes 50% of the theoretically-maximum amount of hereditary information (Figure 1).


Fig, 1: The parents (yellow + orange for one parent, and green + blue for the other parent) contribute shuffled-up versions of the four chromosomes shown at left. The child inherits a total of two “recombined” chromosomes, as seen at far right.

We can do exactly the same thing for last names!

We’ll split up each name by phoneme (or by syllable, but usually a syllable is too “large” a unit), and then mix the names together.

For example, for parents “SMITH” and “KOBAYASHI,” we would write out the names phonetically….

S M IH TH         (Parent #1's last name)

K O B A YA SH EE  (Parent #2's last name)

…then arrange the two different-length names so that they match up in length (the shorter name will have some extra blank spaces in it)…

S _ M _ IH __ TH


…and finally pick randomly from each parent as we read along from left to right. In this case, the chosen phonemes are highlighted in red:

  S _ M _ IH __ TH

  S   B A YA    TH

Giving the name “S’bayath,” perhaps also written as “Sbayath” or “Sibayath” (3 syllables: S•ba•yath)

See figures 2 and 3 for an in-depth illustration of this method to existing hyphenated names.


Fig. 2: If we have two parents with hyphenated names (“Smith-Walton” and “Kobayashi-Jones”), then the phoneme-based name recombination will work as follows. The original names are at left, the gray highlighting in the middle shows which phonemes were (randomly) chosen to contribute to the child’s name, and the name at the right is the recombined name, each of which will be one half of the child’s new surname.


Fig. 3: In this case, the final name is “Salton-Jobashines,” but there are hundreds of other possible surnames that could have arisen. For example, if the name recombination were flipped (so that the gray-highlighted regions were discarded instead of selected), the final name would have been W’mith–Koya, perhaps also written as as “Wuhmith-Koya.”


Next time you’re about to inflict an 8-part hyphenated surname upon your royal heir, think of the plight of Mr. Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg described above, and consider this approach instead!

PROS: Inspired by nature, which means that it’s inherently good and true.

CONS: There is a very small chance that your child could end up with an unpronounceable last name with no vowels, or a name like “Aaaaaaa.”

Never fall for a clickbait title again with this one INSANE museum tip! Your art appreciation teacher would hate it.


Museums are often large and weirdly laid out, and it’s frequently impossible to see the high points of culture without major hassle.

In contrast, amusement park rides are laid out with extreme care to provide an engaging experience the whole way through.

Specifically relevant to this proposal are “narrative” rides where a user gets into a vehicle and experiences a story of some kind. Examples:

  • “Haunted house” rides
  • Disney rides like “Pirates of the Caribbean,” “Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride,” or “It’s a Small World.”


We will combine the amusement park “narrative ride” with the contents of a museum (Fig. 1).

Advantages of experiencing the contents of a museum as a linear ride instead of an open “wander about freely” space:

  • Dawdlers are prevented from hogging the best Greek urn viewing locations.
  • The viewing experience is linear, and can thus be more easily crafted by the museum curator.
  • An audio guide can be synced up with the ride, so no separate “press this number” audio guide is required. Instead, the audio guide can come out of speakers in the vehicle or in the exhibition hall.


Fig 1: This “Pirates of the Caribbean”-style museum ride is both engaging and educational.


You must demand that any future museums that you attend be presented in the format of a theme park ride.

PROS: Greatly increases cultural and educational opportunities.

CONS: People may fall into the river if they become too enamored of a specific piece of work and try to remain near it while the ride moves on.

The secret that BIG CITY LAWYERS don’t want you to know! Never get convicted of a crime you committed again, with this one insane tip!


“Justice is blind” is a common, but incorrect, expression.

It is indisputable that that factors of age, sex, race, general attractiveness, style of dress, hairstyle, and more will factor into both whether or not an individual is convicted of a crime and in the severity of sentencing for those convicted of a crime.


Fig. 1: If the defendant were replaced by a featureless silhouette, it would be impossible for the defendant to be negatively impacted by existing prejudices.


Normally, someone accused of a crime is forced to sit in the trial room, but they typically have very little input into the actual trial.

Therefore, it’s not actually necessary that the person sitting at the defendant’s table actually be the defendant.

The proposal is as follows: the actual defendant can hire an attractive model (of a sex, race, age, etc. of their choosing) to represent them in the courtroom. This hired stand-in could be a well-spoken and attractive orator.

The jury and judge would never actually know who the real defendant was.

If this “proxy defendant” needs to take the witness stand, they could also be outfitted with a wireless earpiece so that the real defendant could supply information to the proxy, who would then actually be the one to relate it to the judge or jury.

As an additional point: it’s frequently possible to determine a defendant’s sex and race by just their name. This can be solved by assigning randomized names and/or numbers to the defendant and others involved in the case. (In fact, this is already done for jurors in America—”Juror Twelve” is unlikely to be a person’s actual name.)

Fig. 2: Even the most fair judge is at least somewhat influenced by the appearance of the defendant; for example, the be-suited golden man at left is unlikely to be judged as harshly as the unkempt gremlin at right.

PROS: Allows justice will actually be applied fairly, regardless of the appearance of the defendant.

CONS: Would further increase the advantage of wealthy defendants.

Obsolete password requirements cost over 50 billion dollars in lost productivity per year—solve the problem forever with these new password requirements!


You’re probably familiar with web sites that have very particular password requirements:

  • “Your password must contain a number, capital letter, and special character.”
  • “Your password must contain the name of a Triple Crown-winning horse.”
  • “Your password cannot contain your username.”

The purpose of these requirements is usually to either:

  1. Require that the password not be instantly guessable by hackers
  2. Require that the password be specific to a particular web site. Although this is quite rare, it does exist. For example, a bank could require that “$” appear in a password four times, which would prevent you from re-using your other passwords. (This is the same principle used by colleges that have weird essay prompts, preventing an individual from re-using other essays.)

The issue:

There are relatively few variants of these requirements, and they are all extremely unimaginative.

For example, the password pa#ss@W0rd can probably be used on most sites—so when one of them gets hacked, your bank account will be imperiled!

Three proposals:

The following proposals are for more creative methods of enforcing unique passwords (which generally would not be usable between sites).


Figure 1 / Proposal 1: Require that CURVED letters and ANGULAR letters alternate in the password. Very straightforward!

Font nerd bonus feature: See bonus figure A (at bottom) for more details about the degree to which this property depends on the specific font you are using.


Figure 2 / Proposal 2: Require that a password contain a number, letter, Chinese character (light blue), Devanagari syllable (purple) Greek letter (dark blue), and accented letter (orange). Those specific character sets are arbitrary, so different users could be given different language requirements. There is no shortage of options: there are ~32 character sets for currently-written languages in the current Unicode build plus approximately 100 historical scripts no longer in standard use.

Downside to this method: If you got really unlucky, your password might require the following: an Egyptian hieroglyph, Chinese obsolete seal-script character, Sumero-Akkadian cuneiform mark, and linear B symbol. Probably you should just register a new user account at that point. If you got incredibly unlucky, the site might even require a script that is not in Unicode yet (perhaps Maya glyphs). In that case, presumably you would have to draw (or carve) the appropriate Maya glyph and upload a picture with your cell phone camera.


Figure 3 / Proposal 3: Require that a password solve a certain type of visual puzzle. In this case, we require that a continuous line be drawn through all the symbols (this is shown as a yellow highlight).

Downside to this method: this puzzle would be extremely font-specific; the “p -> c” line and “c -> 6” line are a bit questionable even here.


If you run a web site, you should change your obsolete password requirements immediately!

PROS: Makes password re-use between sites impossible.

CONS: Probably you’ll use a password manager and then it will get hacked and/or you’ll forget the master password.


Bonus Fascinating Typeface Fun Fact Figure A: As a surprising feature of English typography, curved-and-non-curved letters (which are important to distinguish in the “curved vs angular” proposal in Figure 1) are consistent among nearly all non-handwriting fonts.

For example, a capital “M” is nearly always 4 straight lines, whereas a lower-case “m” is almost always two curved arches. The only counterexample I found in a non-exotic font was that a lower-case “j” is normally curved, but it is completely straight in the font “Futura.”  Futura is one of the few not-totally-a-gimmick fonts that defies the conservation-of-letter-curve.