Charming Animation Illustrates the Different Gaits of Four Legged Animals

GIF via Laughing Squid

Can’t get enough of the funny way your dog or cat trots around? Animator Stephen Cunnane breaks things down with his mesmerizing animal gait animation. Focusing on four-legged animals (quadrupeds) Cunnane’s animation moves from walk to sprint, giving a close-up detail on how the paws’ movement makes the body gently sway.

“Animals walk weird…who knew?! This animated video helps break down animal gaits for animators, artists, or any old fan of studying creatures,” Cunnane writes. And clearly, his work has been a hit, with over 60,000 views of the clever clip. If you think looking at the gaits of animals is all fun and games, it’s actually serious business.

Animals not only change their gait depending on the type of terrain, but some—like lizards—even use it to help with respiration. Interestingly, humans were unable to fully understand and define the gaits of animals until photography made it possible to create still images of animals in motion. English photographer Eadweard Muybridge’s 1878 images of The Horse in Motion was even taken to help settle the idea that at some point, all four of a horse’s hooves leave the ground when trotting.

Across six different gaits—walk, amble, pace, trot, canter, and gallop—Cunnane uses a canine to demonstrate a type quadruped gait. The well-designed animation will bring a smile and any pet owner or animal lover who can’t get enough of watching mammals move. And, if you prefer insects, Cunnane has another animation for you.

Animal Gait Anitmation by Stephen Cunnane

GIF via Laughing Squid

Stephen Cunnane created a charming animation detailing the gait of four-legged animals.

Interested in the way insects move instead? Don’t worry, Cunnane’s got you covered.

Stephen Cunnane: Website | Facebook | Instagram | Vimeo 
h/t: [Laughing Squid]

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The B&N Podcast: Robert Harris


Every author has a story beyond the one that they put down on paper. The Barnes & Noble Podcast goes between the lines with today’s most interesting writers, exploring what inspires them, what confounds them, and what they were thinking when they wrote the books we’re talking about.

The novelist Robert Harris has made a specialty out of flash points in history: the explosion of Mt. Vesuvius in ancient Rome, the cracking of the Enigma code, or the intrigue surrounding the Dreyfus Affair in 19th-century France. In his latest, Munich, Harris turns to the infamous 1938 meeting between Neville Chamberlain and Adolf Hitler. Spinning a tale of brooding suspense around the true story of those four days in September, Harris offers a dramatic and thought-provoking new perspective on Chamberlain’s “appeasement” of the Nazi regime. In this episode, the author joins us to talk about that meeting and the strange alchemy required to turn a historical moment into page-turning thrills.


From the internationally best-selling author of Fatherland and the Cicero Trilogy—a new spy thriller about treason and conscience, loyalty and betrayal, set against the backdrop of the fateful Munich Conference of September 1938.

Hugh Legat is a rising star of the British diplomatic service, serving at 10 Downing Street as a private secretary to the Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain. Rikard von Holz is on the staff of the German Foreign Office—and secretly a member of the anti-Hitler resistance. The two men were friends at Oxford in the 1920s, but have not been in contact since. Now, when Hugh flies with Chamberlain from London to Munich, and Rikard travels on Hitler’s train overnight from Berlin, their paths are set on a disastrous collision course. And once again, Robert Harris gives us actual events of historical importance—here are Hitler, Chamberlain, Mussolini, Daladier—at the heart of an electrifying novel.

Like this podcast? Subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher to discover intriguing new conversations every week.

Author photo of Robert Harris (c)

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The Barnes & Noble Review

With dawn’s light peeking over the horizon and snow dusting the…

With dawn’s light peeking over the horizon and snow dusting the steep rock walls, this winter scene at Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park in Colorado reminds us of a Van Gogh painting. Every determined tree and each ripple of stone stands out, telling a story that spans geologic eras. Lesser known than other Colorado parks, the Black Canyon can be a stunning surprise to first time visitors. Photo by James Broscheid (

Balancing Work and Study: 4 Highly Effective Tips You Need to Try

If you are a student, you’ve probably thought of getting a job. But is it possible to work and study at the same time?

The answer is yes.

To be successful in balancing work and study, here are some tips and tricks you can consider.

Find a Job Based on What You Are Studying

It might seem difficult but it is not impossible!

For example, if you are pursuing a degree in History, you could look for jobs that can help you improve and learn more about your course. Universities are often looking for students who want to get involved.

You can help with different organization or your school’s administrative tasks. Either way, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with successful people who surely have a lot to teach you. Plus, you’ll be able to earn while learning, too.

Filling your resume with field-related experience also increases your chances of getting a job after you graduate. Employers appreciate related experience.

Become the Master of Time Management

time management planning

Your schedule might be pretty tight if you’re working and studying at the same time. This is a challenging situation but you need to stay committed to make it through.

The key to balancing work and study successfully is to manage and organize your tasks carefully. Take into consideration using an agenda. It helps a lot! You can plan all the activities you have to do and, while time passes, you’ll get used to using it.

Every person in the world has the same amount of hours in a day, the same amount of days in a month, and months in a year. If others can make it work, so can you. Make changes to your current schedule until you have full control over your time. Follow this schedule to optimize your tasks.

See Also: 5 Essential Time Management Tips to Live By

Take Breaks

take breaks

Of course, you might feel overwhelmed because it is not easy to work and study at the same time. Every once in a while, a break might help a lot. Don’t bury yourself under a pile of articles and lessons right after you come back from work.

Take your time and relax! Of course, it is also important not to push it and start procrastinating. Limit the length of your break and follow your agenda.

Enjoy a couple of hours with your friends, take a walk with your dog, and do some morning exercise to keep the energy levels high. Something as simple as your favorite chocolate can make things better, as long as you keep track of your schedule.

See Also: Five Things To Do Right Now To Stop Procrastinating

Keep Your Motivation Level High

At first, you could feel that everything is possible and that you can make it through without problems. The boost of motivation you have at the beginning is incredible and it gives you amazing powers.

But, with time, you might feel overwhelmed or tired and so your level of motivation might decrease. It will become harder and harder to do your assignments after a long day at work.

Reward yourself after you finish reading your lessons. Keep in mind that you do not have to give yourself amazing rewards. A chocolate, watching a movie or going for a walk will surely help. Besides that, you’ll have more energy and you will retain the information easily. Receiving small rewards after accomplishing tasks makes it easier to retain information.


Of course, it is not an easy job balancing work and study. Both of them are important for us and we should take care of both aspects. Although it might seem challenging at first, and it is, you should probably keep in mind that it’s not impossible.

By successfully managing your time and your breaks, you can easily achieve work-study balance. And remember, this is just a transition period towards adulthood. Do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do!

The post Balancing Work and Study: 4 Highly Effective Tips You Need to Try appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

How ‘the Kingfish’ Turned Corporations into People

Although Huey Long was a populist who championed the little guy over big business, his attempt to muzzle the press ultimately empowered the very corporate interests against which he so often inveighed. When Long imposed a punitive tax on Louisiana newspapers to stifle criticism, it was not at all clear that for-profit business corporations had free speech rights—indeed, the prevailing law was on Long’s side. But in 1936, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the newspaper corporations and struck down Long’s advertising tax. Instead of a shield for persecuted dissenters from government orthodoxy, the First Amendment was transformed into a sword used by business to strike down unwanted regulation.

It’s Not What You Have But How You Feel That Makes You Rich

One day, while riding the train, I overheard a cry for help. Sure, the young lady sitting across from me was literally crying.

“If only I was rich,” she said. “If only I was rich!”

“I know, Babe . . . I know,” responded her friend in hopes of consoling her.

What started out as watching from afar, as if I were some nosy neighbor peeking from a window, turned into full-blown observation. What struck me most peculiar of all- for some reason- was the word “rich.”

After mulling over the thought for a second or two, I turned to Google for help.

Rich = Abundantly Supplied

The search engine instantly returned a definition.

Rich: abundantly supplied.

So, I asked myself: “Does that girl look ‘abundantly supplied’?”

Well, I see an iPhone 7 in her hand and a Louis Vuitton purse on her lap.

Then, I got to thinking: to be “abundantly supplied” means to have more than you need.

When I’m sitting around the table with family at Thanksgiving and everyone feels more stuffed than does the turkey, everybody is abundantly supplied. In other words, so far as food goes, we’re all rich because we have more food than we need.

What about housing?

Every non-homeless person is abundantly supplied. The same line of reasoning goes for the rest of the basic necessities. Once the basic necessities are met, all bodily needs are abundantly supplied.

The Mind is Everything

mental domain

Unlike bodily needs which require basic necessities to satisfy basic desires, mental desires and needs are almost always abstract in nature. For this reason, we, as humans, can transcend meeting basic needs.

Just think of the people who still manage to crack a smile even when their bodies don’t feel comfortable during a fast. And think of depressed people. Although they have their basic needs met, they can’t manage to smile.

With that, remember this:

The best things in life are not only free but- get this- they’re not even things!

What Makes You Rich

See Also: 10 Mind Exercises That Will Teach You How To Build Self Confidence

When the Beatles famously sang “Money Can’t Buy Me Love”, they could’ve easily added “Money Can’t Buy Me Happiness, Peace or Even Riches”.

Aye, there’s the rub!

There’s no amount of money that can make you feel rich.


Because it’s not what you have but how you feel that makes you rich. This is by no means a revolutionary idea.

The wise men of yesterday used to say that it is better to be born lucky than rich.

Indeed, if you’re lucky enough to be a happy person, which ultimately depends on how you interpret reality, no amount of gold or lack thereof can ever affect your disposition.

This explains why Socrates went so far as to say that “he is richest who is content with the least, for content is the wealth of nature.”

And it is this wealth of nature which Shakespeare called his crown “a crown it is that seldom kings enjoy”.

What Socrates and Shakespeare both understood was that words such as happiness and riches are nothing but synonyms for contentment. In fact, contentment can be likened to a girl who wakes up in the morning in her natural state—stank breath and all.

When that same girl goes to her stylist and makeup artist, she transforms into the supermodel Happiness. Presto! She now can strut her stuff on the runway.

But when the show is over, Happiness—as did Cinderella—turns back into her natural self: plain ol’ Contentment.

If to be content means merely to be satisfied, then real wealth can only be measured by having as much money as you need, not want. After all, if happiness is a state of mind and everything about the mind is invisible.

To expect something invisible to give you happiness would be equivalent to expecting your eyes to let you see a ghost. This point may best be illustrated by the following thought experiment.

The World’s Richest Poor Man

Imagine traveling back to the year 1720. Think that you were born into royalty.

Being born with such luck, you have all the power and riches in the world. But here’s the catch: you’ve already tasted what life is like in the 21st century.

Now, here’s where the true nature of riches reveals itself.

As a king living in the 18th century, the average lifespan was about 35 years. Today’s average life expectancy is roughly 80 years.

So, let’s say you endured the harshest conditions possible, such as living homeless. That would probably cut off about a decade from your lifespan. Yet, that still leaves you off two times better than the richest king in the eighteenth century.

But such a case study would fail to reflect the average conditions of someone living today because most people aren’t homeless.

Most people have access to the basic conveniences, like smartphones, TVs and so forth. Think about it: Your Majesty didn’t even have a dumb-phone in his palace.

There are so many luxuries taken for granted today that would have so far exceeded the imagination of people from another age.

In Closing

happiness makes you rich

People living today may never see how lucky they are if they continue to compare their status with others- probably just like the woman in front of me.

After waking up from my daydream, it finally dawned on me: the only thing in life that can make you poor is a poor attitude. Bingo!

Never saw it in that light. But, of course, the poor queen sitting across from me won’t be able to hear about my bright idea and fairy tales of poor kings.

The post It’s Not What You Have But How You Feel That Makes You Rich appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

3 Tips From An Introvert On How To Improve Your Relationships

You’re reading 3 Tips From An Introvert On How To Improve Your Relationships, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’re enjoying this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.


Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure you are not, in fact, surrounded by jerks.

I have been a social introvert for as long as I can remember. You know, I always preferred the company of my family and that of my close friends. Meeting someone new meant sweaty palms, an increased heart rate, and the occasional embarrassing blunder. After it kept me from taking advantage of opportunities and from meeting new people for years, I decided that something had to be done.

Assume Responsibility For Your Behavior

One thing that I used to tell myself, again and again, was that I was unlucky when it came to meeting the “right people”. This included people at work, the few acquaintances I had, and one failed relationship after another. All that changed when I started assuming responsibility for my behavior and for the people that I met.

You see, you attract people through your behavior. Yes, you are correct, Lady Luck also has a hand in it. But, if you go bar hopping, you are more likely to find other bar hoppers. It might get you a little bit of temporary excitement, but it rarely leads to something more meaningful. If you lack self-esteem, you are more likely to be taken for a ride by a control freak that will exploit your vulnerability.

Once you start to assume responsibility for who you are and how you feel, things change. You realize that you are in control of how you feel, where you go and who you meet. You are more likely to meet people that you’ll actually enjoy as friends. You get a lot more lucrative opportunities and you will not hesitate to take advantage of them.

 Stop Caring So Much

I have literally spent tens, if not hundreds of hours worrying about what other people thought. Any inquisitive glance thrown my way made me wonder if there was something wrong with my hair, the way I looked or the way I behaved. After I worked up the courage to ask a few people about the way they looked at me, I realized that some, if not most of those looks where admiring, thoughtful or just unintentional.

You should avoid being rude, overly sarcastic or even arrogant. Some people use that as a defense mechanism. On the other side of the spectrum, caring too much about things that other people see as trivial matters is going to take you nowhere good. Unless you are in a position of power or influence, you cannot change millions of other people to be more like what you expect them to be. Most of the time, you can only change yourself.

Manage Your Expectations

My childhood was spent reading adventure novels. A good book, with mixed flavors of mystery, romance and adventure could keep me occupied for hours. At that time, most of the things that I knew about social behavior, human interaction and relationships came from those books. You can probably imagine how big of a shock was when I first started living on my own.

Expectations are what usually what trigger dissatisfaction, anxiety, or even depression. Let’s suppose that your significant other ends up stealing the few inherited pieces of jewelry that you have, pawns it and gambles the money away. You are naturally going to be very angry and hurt because you expected your partner to behave better. This example is a double-edged sword and it was meant to be that way.

There are expectations that are the result of the rules that make up the foundation of our society. You know, such as not stealing, not hurting other people, etc. These rules are usually respected and enforced, but that shouldn’t trigger a false sense of security in you. It is better to stay a little bit more alert, as a habit, than to become a victim.

For the other type of expectations, let’s go through a little exercise.

  1. Imagine that you acquired the things that you dream about. You know, not fortunes and everlasting fame, because you are not a greedy person and you do not want those things just for the sake of having them. I am talking about a loving spouse, a few beautiful children, a big house in a cozy neighborhood, brand new SUV, good job with a more-than-comfortable income.
  2. Now imagine that you do not have ALL of those things. You still have a loving spouse, a few beautiful children, but you struggle with your job and income, you live in a 1-bedroom apartment and drive a second-hand, older car.

Correct me if I am wrong, but if you expect to someday to have everything listed in point 1 these are your options:

  • Postpone your happiness until you can get everything in point 1 and more. You will feel miserable because you do not have it yet and those feelings are likely to transmit to your family
  • Appreciate what you already have and work hard to get more. Even in the eventuality that you fail getting that big house, you are still happy, because you already had what really matters

Practicing gratitude is a trendy tactic that helps people break free of depression and live a happier, fuller life. You should give it a try because it really works.

However, when I hear the words “appreciate what you already have”, I get a little bit scared sometimes. I am afraid of not settling for less than I can get. I am afraid of not becoming the most that I can be during my lifetime. But I also refuse to let expectations that might be hard to get prevent me from seeing what I already have and how truly blessed I am.

You’ve read 3 Tips From An Introvert On How To Improve Your Relationships, originally posted on Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement. If you’ve enjoyed this, please visit our site for more inspirational articles.


Satyajit Ray’s ‘The Hero’ Revisited

The train, in which nearly all the action takes place, is a hive of designs. The compartments frame a latticework of plots as intricate as anything in Graham Greene’s novel Stamboul Train. Almost everyone has a scheme and almost every character, in this film about acting, is more than ready to pretend to be something that he or she is not. Everyone, essentially, is reflecting back the movie star’s concern about how much selling yourself to the Devil may, in fact, be the right and selfless thing to do, if it can offer those who are suffering a respite from their plight. The result is a festival of ironies.

How Has Trade Changed Over Time

Trading centuries ago was way different than what we’re experiencing today. It was less convenient, easy, and predictable. It took a lot of time and it came with a lot of risks.

Here, we take a look at how has trade changed over time.

Setting the scene

Post-war investment was very different to the trading opportunities of today. The Great Depression, along with two world wars, had impacted the Stock Market such that very few people owned common stock. In fact, until 1954, daily trading volumes sat below one million shares on the NYSE – a tiny fraction of what they are today.

Investing was time-consuming and investment choices were fairly restricted, thanks to the limited competition among independent stockbrokers.

With contemporary technology, trade took much longer, too. Investors had to contact their brokers to instruct a trade. After that, a ticket needs to be created before the transaction can be carried out.

Prices were also harder to come by. An investor had little choice but to contact a stockbroker for the current market price on shares.

One instrumental change that took place was the introduction of a monthly investment program by the NYSE. This enabled investors to risk smaller amounts of money.

The 1970s to the end of the 20th century

stock market 1970
Via wikiwand

While the Stock Market was experiencing slow growth during the 1970s, progress and changes in other areas were beginning to take place. Where trading had traditionally taken the form of physical stock certificates, this decade saw the rise of electronic trades, with stocks held at a central depository.

As automation and technology improved, the capacity for trading volume increased. At the time, the NYSE reported a daily trading volume of 100 million by 1982.

In 1970, the trade in derivative financial instruments increased. A number of governments initiated volatility into the markets by relaxing controls on pricing and a methodology for establishing option prices was introduced. Predicting future prices was sped up with the advancement in computing technology.

It wasn’t just the improvements in computers that helped the financial markets grow in the late 20th century.

In their 1996 publication, “Globalization Myths”, Paul Bairoch and Richard Kozul-Wright noted that the price of a three-minute phone conversation from New York to London fell by $242 over the course of the century. By 1990, a call was just $3. That’s way lower than its $245 price in the 1930s.

With cheaper telecoms available and electronic trades predominating, commissions were lower and investments could be smaller. Smaller risks were a major factor in the increase of mutual funds. With the introduction of individual retirement accounts (IRAs), more investors chose to pool their money with others’ in order to achieve financial goals.

21st-century trading

21st century trading

Today, it’s possible to make trades from the comfort of your living room, without having to employ the services of a broker or a financial advisor. The internet has proved an invaluable resource to investors, with current prices available on demand and the option of managing daily investments themselves.

Trade options have become so extensive that those who are new to investing can find the market somewhat intimidating. With the information available on the internet, new traders can easily adjust.

Compared with the 20th century, the economic sectors are vastly different. Iron, coal, and steel were a much larger part of the market before. Today, banking, pharmaceuticals, and information technology are the largest sectors.

Further differences include a rise in online brokerages, which means investors are able to pay lower commission rates, and the introduction of decimal pricing for stocks in 2001. As a result, there’s faster trading.

These developments come with an increased risk.

As the credit crunch of the late 2000s demonstrated, globalization and the close relationship between international markets can mean there is nowhere to hide when disaster strikes. An apparently small event in an overseas market can, therefore, have economic implications across the world.

Rather than being conducted through multiple regional exchanges, today’s global economy is defined in terms of financial centers. The largest of which are Tokyo, London, and New York.


Although investing is quicker, cheaper, and more convenient nowadays, the number and complexity of options make it more challenging. With the risk introduced by globalization, a portfolio structured for the future is more important than ever.

See Also: Trading Tips For Beginners: Are You Emotionally Ready to Trade Online?

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The Radicals

The title of Ryan McIlvain’s new novel The Radicals refers not only to McIlvain’s protagonists but also to a piano composition performed early on in the narrative and described as “a musical record and a critique…of the medieval Christian attempts to impose God’s kingdom on earth…” A portentous note has been struck. Ahead, we fear, lies Meaning and this is hardly surprising. McIlvain’s previous novel Elders was primarily a brooding drama of internal struggle among young Mormon missionaries, a drama in which the denouement was a biblically long time coming. Acclaimed, parenthetically, as a worthy addition to the category of “ex-Mormon fiction,” (one that claims writers like Terry Tempest Williams, Neil Labute, Shawn Vestal and Brian Evenson), Elders established McIlvain as above all serious. Thankfully The Radicals reveals him also to be agile and irreverent. “I was a hale, hearty, well-adjusted child of loving, educated parents,” Eli, the narrator, admits, “I just couldn’t bring myself to give a shit anymore.” That’s more like it.

We meet Eli on the tennis court opposite his new friend Sam Westergard. Both are graduate students in New York City. Their subject being Marxist theory, they are playing tennis ironically. Or pretending to, acting like “a pair of intellectuals disgracing the game” while in fact straining to win. Not like the real athletes on an adjacent court, “their rally balls ticking back and forth metronomically, and low over the net, like grown-up shots.” The scene could be the opening of a T.C. Boyle story; jittery and sharp, it alerts us to every sound, every shift of light and to an undercurrent of menace. Then, sure enough, “I couldn’t have known I was standing across the net from a murderer,” Eli recalls, “and neither could he.” (McIlvain has us on edge and, despite existential digressions, keeps us there. By the time his politically charged and emotionally turbulent plot subsides, Eli the socialist and Sam the ex-Mormon will stumble into killing and here too the novel’s lens is tightly focused and the images sickeningly clear:  “now the old man has pitched forward, jerking forward and to the side as if bitten by the sound, and then another, then a third loud pop….Sam tracking him with his gun, following his movements, as if stirring something in the air.”

Before action, however, comes doctrine and, surprisingly, romance. The first arrives in the shape of Eli’s ex-girlfriend Alex who leads a radical group agitating against the swindling energy corporation Soline and its criminal CEO while the second takes the form of Jen, a young classical pianist (see above) who inspires Eli to become a better person (and her fiancé) but to whom he lies. About his abandoned dissertation; about the fast-food job he sabotages; and about Alex who is now with Sam who has turned mysterious. “He ran hot and cold sometimes in the space of a single sentence,” Eli frets, “and the cold could stop your heart, as if you’d swum out with him into the warm shallows of his old enthusiasm…only to feel the bottom drop out at the continental shelf’s edge: Suddenly you’re in bottomless, dark, updrafting, freezing water.”

The Cause, the Relationship and the Friendship cross paths in Arizona where Eli joins Alex’s group in occupying the foreclosed house of one of Soline’s victims and where a standoff with local police, deftly staged, fizzles wonderfully. “It felt like whole minutes before the giant officer softened, scoffing a little…. ‘I take it you’re the Occupy leftovers?’ he said. ‘You poor little hipster shits – you guys are all forty years late to the party.’ He tapped his partner on the shoulder and headed back to the cruiser.” Then it’s on to the Grand Canyon for Jen and Eli (“above miles of open, carved-out, calcified sky, like loss embodied, a present absence, and where was the vast spiky mold the land had been imprinted with?”) before the return to New York City, the slide into deceit and homicidal obsession, and then a final ascent to what sounds like redemption. The Radicals certainly ends on a soaring, rhapsodic note. But the novel is most satisfying when it doesn’t soar; when, for example, in Manhattan at nightfall a drunken Eli watches “the mysterious switchboard of the opposite buildings activate, permutate, the lights blinking on and off, shifting, sending mysterious signals” or when a desperate Eli loiters outside Jen’s workplace, “waiting with the manic, rattling feeling of a man who can see a giant countdown in the noonday sky.” This is McIlvain at his best, keeping his eye on the ball.


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