President Obama officially announced a new brain research initiative in a press conference at the White House this morning, something he first hinted at in his State of the Union address in February. In its first year, the project would devote roughly $100 million in public funding and a similar amount from private foundations, to develop new tools for mapping neural circuits. "The human brain is at the present time the most complicated organ in the known universe," Francis Collins, the director of the National Institutes of Health, told reporters on a conference call this morning. Understanding how circuits of neurons contribute to the complex properties of the brain and how they break down in disease is one of the biggest scientific challenges of our time, Collins said. "We aim through this very ambitious project, some might even call it audacious, to begin to unravel those mysteries."
Johnny Depp is 53 years old but he doesn't look a day over 26 in the new "Pirates of the Caribbean" movie -- at least for a few moments. There was no plastic surgeon involved, heavy makeup or archival footage used to take the actor back to his boyish "Cry Baby" face, however. It's all post-production visual effects, and after a decade of refining the process since Brad Pitt ran the gamut of time in "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button," it's becoming commonplace in major Hollywood movies. Depp is just the latest mega-star to get the drastic de-aging treatment on screen, joining the ranks of Robert Downey Jr. (in "Captain America: Civil War"), Michael Douglas (in "Ant-Man"), Kurt Russell (in "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. In the old days, a lucky unknown lookalike (or look enough alike) could have scored the part of young Jack Sparrow or Tony Stark.
An Ivanka Trump look-alike vacuums at a recently launched art exhibit in Washington, D.C. (Ryan Maxwell Photography) A Washington, D.C. museum has launched an exhibit that features an Ivanka Trump look-alike and invites onlookers to toss crumbs onto a pink, plush carpet for her to vacuum up -- supposedly in the name of celebrating feminism. "Ivanka Vacuuming," by artist Jennifer Rubell, is an exhibit that CulturalDC is running at the Flashpoint Gallery from Feb. 1-17. The exhibit features a woman, who looks startling like President Trump's eldest daughter, clad in a pink dress and stilettos while wielding a vacuum next to a giant pile of bread crumbs. "Inspired by a figure whose public persona incorporates an almost comically wide range of feminine identities--daughter, wife, mother, sister, model, working woman, blonde-- 'Ivanka Vacuuming' is simultaneously a visual celebration of a contemporary feminine icon; a portrait of our own relationship to that figure; and a questioning of our complicity in her role-playing," a press release for the exhibit says. In front of the Ivanka look-alike, viewers will see a "white pedestal" with a giant pile of crumbs.
"Supergirl" stars Chyler Leigh and Floriana Lima took to Twitter to thank GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) for including the CW series in the list of nominees for the outstanding drama series category for this year's GLAAD Media Awards. Leigh, who plays Alex Danvers on the DC Comics TV series, wrote in a tweet that they are "grateful and proud" of the recognition. Lima, who portrays Alex's girlfriend Maggie Sawyer, is also appreciative of the nomination. The GLAAD Media Awards recognize and honor media for their fair, accurate and inclusive representations of the LGBTQ community and the issues that affect their lives. And since "Supergirl's" LGBTQ love story between Alex and Maggie has been well-received by fans and critics alike, it isn't really a surprise that the show got a nod from GLAAD.
At its worst, to be blind on the internet is to be told that you are a liar. "Every time I say I'm visually impaired," says Casey Greer. "someone will try to shut me down, saying, 'Well then how did you type this comment?!' It feels silly that in 2019, I always have to explain that blind people use and love the internet just as much as anybody else." YouTube's thriving community of blind creators, of which Greer is part. These creators have become voices for a poorly understood and often overlooked group of people, who, apparently unbeknownst to many sighted people, share digital space with them every single day. If you are sighted, Visual Impairment YouTube answers questions you likely never thought to ask: How do blind people keep houseplants?