Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Hanah Metchis has some interesting thoughts on invisible wear and tear.
Electronic paper has now reached video speed.
"Nigerian Philanthropist Can't Give Away Millions"
Some gamers who are victims of crimes in their virtual world want to call in the real world justice system. (Via Techdirt.)

Monday, September 29, 2003

"Geek Eye for the Luddite Guys" (Via GMSV.)
"Most Phallic Buildings in the World" contest: Here's the winner and the other nominees. (Via BBspot.)
Endless swimming pool.
Texture garden: Serious algorithmic eye candy. (Via Linkfilter.)

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Administrative note: GeekPress will be taking a few days' hiatus. We'll be back Monday, September 29!
Origami principles are being used in a variety of high-tech applications, such as collapsible solar sails and designing buildings for increased earthquake safety. (Via Quare.)
Everything you wanted to know about television. (Via BBspot.)
Will PlanetLab replace the Internet?
"Why Everything You Know About Murphy’s Law is Wrong": A detailed history of Murphy's Law and the man behind the legend, engineer Edward Murphy, Jr. (Via Cosmic Log.)

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Could religion survive the discovery of extra-terrestrial life? (Via Gravity Lens.)
The Pentagon is considering buying armies of Scottish killer robot soldiers. I don't know why this makes me think of this quote by Groundskeeper Willie from The Simpsons, "Now, the kilt was only for day-to-day wear. In battle, we donned a full-length gown covered in sequins." (Via Fark.)
Panicking mice behave like panicking human beings, making them a good model for studying disaster response strategies.
Using Google image search to pick baby names. Or to avoid horrible baby names.
Chemists may be forced to revise Avogadro's number.
How widespread is cheating with handheld PDAs and cellphones during class?

Monday, September 22, 2003

Internet dating: US News & World Report has a lengthy cover story on the effects of internet dating on the American social scene.
The luxury Library Hotel in Manhattan has rooms based on the Dewey Decimal system. For example "[r]oom 700.003 includes books on the performing arts, for example, while room 800.001 has a collection of erotic literature." However, the owners of the Dewey Decimal system are not amused and are suing the hotel for trademark infringement. Based on the hotel website, it looks like a pretty nice place to stay. Here's a full list of the rooms available. (Via IPList.)
What are the probabilities for landing on any particular square in the board game Monopoly? This guy has figured them out. (Via Boing Boing.)
Paleontologists have discovered the world's oldest genitals.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

Jason Rollette is building a railgun.
The Grand Canyon in Arizona was born on the East Coast.

Friday, September 19, 2003

How to translate Gangsta to Pirate. (Via Boing Boing.)
The universe might have been born in a black hole.
What your sleeping position reveals about your personality. (Via bottomquark.)
Some monkeys apparently have a highly developed sense of fairness.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Internet utility of the day: Map to Mordor. (Via GMSV.)
College freshman builds nuclear fusion reactor from junk parts. Fortunately, it only emits 4 neutrons a minute. (Via ObscureStore.)
Cheating at the slot machines. (Via Metafilter.)
Ghosts are apparently scared of mobile phones. (Via Techdirt.)

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

The worst jobs in science. (Via Transterrestrial Musings.)
Some so-called penis enlargement pills have heavy fecal contamination. (Via Quare.)
What's the truth behind the various "name a star" commercial companies?
Two display systems that don't require projection screens.
Visitors to Doune Castle in Scotland are often "overcome with an irresistible urge to say silly things like 'Bring out your dead!' and 'We are the knights who say NI!'" because of the castle's prominent role in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. (Via Linkfilter.)

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Digital blunders. (Via BBspot.)
Who invented "Ctrl-Alt-Del"? (Via IPList.)
Space elevators are a hot topic. Here are a couple of good review article -- this one via Steve LaNasa and this one via Rand Simberg.
Dave Barry tortures the telemarketers.

Monday, September 15, 2003

MTV has created a very good parody of Matrix: Reloaded. And in case you missed it, here's last year's MTV parody of the Council of Elrond scene from LOTR: Fellowship of the Ring. (Via Linkfilter.)
Beware this innocent-looking electronic greeting card that secretly loads spyware onto your system.
The coolest thing in the universe.
Intelligent bricks. Resistance is futile...

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Democrats: The party of the rich, at least in the US Senate. (Chart created by Tom McMahon from data in this CNN story.)
Today's FoxTrot is amusing.

Friday, September 12, 2003

Quantum cryptography is finally going commercial.
"Notebook computers that show images in 3-D will be put on sale in Japan and the United States next month by Sharp Corp"...
Alternate numbering systems: If you're American, you're used to referring to the numbers 10^3, 10^6, 10^9,... as "thousands, millions, billions, trillions, quadrillions, quintillions", etc. But if you're British, you use a different naming system, i.e. "thousands, millions, milliards, billions, billiards, trillions, trilliards", etc. In other words, a "billion" to the British is the same as a "trillion" to an American. (Via BBspot.)

Thursday, September 11, 2003

How David Blaine performs his levitation trick. Or some of his other street magic. (Via Neoflux.)
Blocking HIV with a "living condom".
One in seven British office workers don't even know how to turn on their PC.
Geek Fiction of the Day: "The Problem with Grandma's Computer" (Via Dale Tudge.)
Ars Technica has a detailed review of Gnome 2.4, the latest version of the open source Linux-based desktop.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

"How Hackers Break In To Enterprise Networks -- A Step-By-Step Demo"
Who else is making money from spam? Why, the anti-spam companies, of course.
"Asteroid Scares: Why They Won't End"
Colorful optical illusions. (Via Madville.)

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Make your own Silly Putty. (Via Linkfilter.)
The music of Bach is disproportionately associated with "serial killers, Nazis and mad scientists" in the movies. (Via Jerk Sauce.)
Subsonic (ultra-low frequency) music can give you a major case of the heebie-jeebies. (Via Techdirt.)
It's the Law and Order coloring book! (Via Steve LaNasa.)

Monday, September 08, 2003

Scientific analysis of the "5 second rule" for food dropped on the floor. (Via Linkfilter.)
Google turns 5 years old. I personally can't imagine using the internet anymore without Google.
"Five Things I Learned From Getting Fabulously Rich Overnight" -- technology boom millionaires reflect on the effects of sudden wealth on their lives in the post-crash era. (Via Techdirt.)
"People speaking English as a second language find each other just as intelligible as they do native English speakers... The effect works regardless of the speaker's mother tongue."

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Saturday, September 06, 2003

Cool ASCII movies.

Friday, September 05, 2003

"Prisoners' Inventions": Interesting article on the clever improvised gadgets created by prison inmates using very limited resources.
Some biological molecules exhibit quantum behaviour.
Nanotechnology researchers have created the world's smallest bucket, which can carry only a few hundred atoms.
How much money do electrical engineers make?

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Translator cam: Researchers at HP have developed a slick handheld translator for foreign-language signs. Their system combines an iPaq handheld with a digital camera and a wireless internet connection. After the user snaps a picture of, say, a Russian-language street sign, the image is analyzed and the remote software generates an English-language translation.
Devout Hindus no longer need to wait in line to pray to the elephant-headed god Ganesh. Subscribers to BPL Mobile they can now make their offerings by SMS. "After the prayer, the temple sends the BPL customer a receipt, special offerings and a portrait of Ganesh."
A cloud weighs as much as 100 elephants. (Via Fark.)
Amphibious sports car. Only $235,000. (Via Techdirt.)

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Some San Diego high schools are installing ATM cash machines on campus. Parents are not thrilled. (Via Obscure Store.)
"GPS device thief caught by GPS"
Customizing the Windows desktop. (Via EliteGeek.)
Spyware: Everything you ever wanted to know. (Via Linkfilter.)

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

How to interpret facial micro-expressions.
Fancy bottled waters may not be any more "natural" or healthy than plain old tap water. Details here. (Via IPList.)
"Mind Expanding Machines"
An armada of 29,000 rubber duckies will be invading the New England coast soon. Apparently, they were part of a toy shipment that was lost at sea between China and Seattle back in 1992, and they have managed to stay together as a group across 3 oceans for 11 years. (Via Quare.)
"An Australian biologist has come up with a theory that the Cambrian explosion was a rapidly-escalating arms race catalyzed by the development of the first creature with vision." As biologist Andrew Parker puts it, "A light switch was turned on. All animals (even those without eyes) needed to be adapted to vision before they were eaten, or before they were outwitted by their prey." (Via Transterrestrial Musings.)