The Weekender: out of time edition

What to do, see, and read this weekend

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Good morning, and welcome back to The Weekender. Our weekend journey is just now starting, so thank you for choosing us for your travels. As you may recall, this was the 50th week of the year 2014 on the planet known colloquially as Earth, otherwise known as Terra in other inhabited star systems. It was not a quiet week, as you might imagine. Below you'll find your itinerary, carefully crafted for your pleasure; stories from the week passed and recommendations for the days ahead. Now. Please sit back and relax as we take you on a journey through time and space. You might hear a slight buzzing in your ears as we get started.

Do this

The Forever Now, New York City

When an art exhibit uses a word coined by William Gibson, you know it’s going to be good. The Museum of Modern in New York is organizing a study of "atemporality" — the modern feeling of being out of sync with time. Let the 17 painters contributing abstract works take you on a trip. "The Forever Now" kicks off Sunday.

moma

Read this

Project Goliath: Inside Hollywood's secret war against Google

Leaked emails show Sony has an ambitious plan to fight piracy, and to do so without a PR backlash. The plan could change the internet as we know it — and be serious trouble for Google.

mpaa goliath

How the NYPD is using social media to put Harlem teens behind bars

Jelani Henry was charged for two attempted murders, and social media evidence was reportedly at the center of the case. Eventually, the charges were dropped — but not before he spent 19 months in prison.

Harlem Jelani Portrait

The 2014 Verge 50

This is our definitive list of the people who made a difference in 2014.

verge 50 lede

Let's go crazy: Inside the making of Purple Rain

The classic Prince album "Purple Rain" turned 30 this year. In retrospect, the album was destined to make pop history. But once upon time, that outcome didn’t seem so obvious.

Prince Cover 1

Will the US torture doctors face any consequences?

A newly released Senate report on the CIA’s torture program revealed that doctors, nurses, and psychologists participated and enabled the brutal activities. But now that the secret is out, it’s unclear what will happen next.

CIA lobby (wikimedia commons)


Japan has a cute problem

Matter
Sophie Knight explains how Japan’s fondness for "cuteness," or "kawaii," may be holding women back.

Japan’s reverence for kawaii, and its close association with femininity, demands that women speak in a high, singsong voice, that they use childlike gestures and expressions, and that they never, ever challenge a man. Those who go against the grain by exhibiting ambition, brains, or strong opinions are disparaged for being too "aggressive."

cute


Every episode of every Star Trek series ever, ranked

Playboy
Somewhere on the spectrum between madness and brilliance lies this article, a complete ranking of every Star Trek episode ever aired.

There's an energy crisis and Janeway really wants some coffee. A spooky nebula may be able to charge the ship's batteries but, wouldn't you know it, it isn't just a cloud it is a nucleogenic being that may be sentient. And needs our help!"

Star Trek door chime


The story behind AOL's iconic yellow running man

The Atlantic
Adrienne LaFrance goes deep on AOL’s buddy message mascot. You know the one.

He popped up on the screen people saw when they were waiting for their modems to stop screeching. He was perched atop the Buddy List. He was splashed across the seemingly infinite supply of software CDs that AOL sent to homes across the United States. He appeared in a bizarre ad with Sharon Stone at the turn of the century and eventually made mascot-like appearances at offline events.

aol man Image: AOL


Talk like an Egyptian

Aeon
In our digital age, we’re inclined to thinking we’ll have a document of our culture forever. But as Grayson Clary argues, so did the Egyptians.

Still, for all its carven glyphs, Egypt cannot claim to have passed down its dreams, memories and hopes for the future. Some of its civilisation has been recovered, but some was lost irretrievably. This is sobering enough on its own terms. When you examine our beloved present day from an Egyptological distance, you see that we are vulnerable to a similar fate.

pyramids egypt

Listen to this

Charli XCX - London Queen

Charli XCX is a pop singer who occupies a weird niche between punk riffs and sugar-sweet melodies. Her latest album, "Sucker," is being released this week. Get acquainted.

J. Cole - January 28th

On his new track, "January 28th," J.Cole riffs for four minutes over one hell of a smooth hook.

Play this

Papers, Please - iPad

The PC game Papers, Please stirred controversy when Apple decided to censor its nudity, and then decided against it. What got obfuscated is that the paper-stamping immigration thriller is better than ever on iPad.

Papers, Please

Watch this


Inherent Vice

Paul Thomas Anderson’s stoner-noir film "Inherent Vice" premieres in some theaters weekend. Although it’s mostly been praised by critics, it’s proved controversial among some members of the Verge staff. See it, and make up your mind.