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Hot Links

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HOT Links is a new food column by Vice magazine's Dan Meyers that takes a look at the underappreciated culinary stars of YouTube. From low-budget commercials for local mom-and-pop restaurants to amateur cooking clips and kitchen disasters, this won't be your typical foodie column espousing the virtues of artisanal jams, hip restaurant trends or celebrity chefs.

In Meyers' debut column, he gathers up his seven favourite tourist-trap commercials from video-sharing sites. From O'Kelly's in Fargo to Larry's on the Lake in Missouri, these commercials may not make you want to dine at these restaurants, but they are entertaining.

 

12 Social Media Accounts That Turned into Books

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EVEN five years ago, the idea that a social-media account or a blog would get a book deal was laughable. All that changed after Justin Halpern and his Twitter feed Sh*t My Dad Says were an unexpected smash hit, not only taking the web by storm, but attracting the publishing industry -- all looking for the next big thing on social media -- in droves. Just as when the music industry descended on Seattle after Nirvana broke, literary agents were now firing up Twitter and Tumblr, hoping to cash in.

Obviously, not every clever Twitter account or social-media persona got a book deal, but some high-profile projects like Garfield Minus Garfield by Dan Walsh, Charlie McDowell's Dear Girls Above Me and Taylor Jones' powerful collection of pictures, Dear Photograph, all managed to successfully make the transition from the web to print.

This list also doubles as some great last-minute gift ideas for the social-media addict or bookworm on your list.

 

8 Gadgets That Improved My Life in 2013

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TECHNOLOGY changes so rapidly that sometimes we buy the latest gadget just because it's new, while other times we try to buy something for more practical reasons. From a fitness-tracking device that will help you understand your health and activity better to CrashPlan, a backup service that will prevent data loss and keep your photos, documents and files up-to-date and secure, this list contains eight gadgets that will actually improve your life and not just take a chunk out of your bank account.

 

Video of the Week: 100 Movie Trailer Mashup

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IF there are a bunch of films from this year that you haven't seen yet, this supercut of 100 movie trailers from 2013 may put you in the mood to get out to the theatre or to start making a list of what you've missed. These sprawling supercuts have become a December tradition and are an excellent way to get excited about the movies that were released this year.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 12, 2013 C19

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Updated on Thursday, December 12, 2013 at 9:29 AM CST: adds links, adds video

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