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And we’re back with our eighteenth installment of Your Comments. Here are our favorites from the past week, from Make: Online, our Facebook page, and Twitter.

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DanYHKim reminded us that junk can be a useful Tool for Creativity:

Well, I really mean ‘junk’. That is, junk is the stuff you can’t figure out what to do with it. Garbage is stuff you throw away.

Having junk means you can take it apart, scavenge parts, see how it works when you do *this* to it. With the freedom to break it, junk allows you to be creative and daring.

This is actually born out in the study of evolutionary genetics. Genes that are replicated in the genome, due to some mistake in DNA replication, are available to be mutated without deleterious effects, since the other copy is sufficient to maintain the critical function. The ‘extra’ or junk gene is available to gain new functions that may become important at some other time. Similarly, a pile of junk lets you mess with stuff and create new, exciting stuff.

. . . or more junk and garbage, in my case.

Brick Moon wrote an interesting grammar critique in response to the discussion about data on the article Flickr data-mining discovers record-breaking whale migration:

Datum Data:
an original poem, inspired by this thread:

A datum here,
a datum there.
Data can be anywhere

Here a datum,
there a datum.
Data cannot be an item?

Can you buy
a gram of grammar,
or a pound
from a two-pound hammer?

“Water don’t,
but data do”
somehow doesn’t
quite ring true.

All due praise
to data parsers,
and to
dialect effacers.

Some odd phrases
give us pauses,
but we say them
just becauses.

dokein wondered about an alternate design for Polly the housetruck:

Amazing, quality work. And I think a modern cab-over-engine commercial truck was a very practical choice for the base vehicle… but I have to wonder, how much cooler would this look with an old Willys Jeep FC-170 cab in the front?

TimC points out a potential barrier to commercial adaptation of the The Conversacube:

Sadly, the alcoholic beverage industrial complex will never let this invention see the light of day! It would put them out of business in short order.

On Facebook, Ollie Eisman is revealed to not be a cat person with this suggestion for the Self-venting cat box in a drawer:

Or just get a poodle and be rid of those filthy beasts. :)

On Twitter, keveightysev likes the Skeleton flamingos:

These make me want to own regular pink flamingos JUST so I can change them up for Halloween

Like these comments? Be sure to sound off in the comments! You could be in next week’s column.

Above photo by Flickr user funadium.