Friday, August 29, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
MindThrow looks like a potentially interesting cross between Wikipedia and Facebook. I've only started exploring their site, but it's encouraging to see new ideas building on prior "Web 2.0" applications.
Monday, August 25, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
The new Class of 2012 Beloit Mindset List is now out, in reference to the cultural context of incoming college freshmen. Here are a few excerpts:
4. GPS satellite navigation systems have always been available.If you want to feel old, read the whole thing.
10. Girls in head scarves have always been part of the school fashion scene.
19. Films have never been X rated, only NC-17.
20. The Warsaw Pact is as hazy for them as the League of Nations was for their parents.
22. Clarence Thomas has always sat on the Supreme Court.
33. The Tonight Show has always been hosted by Jay Leno and started at 11:35 EST.
46. The Green Bay Packers (almost) always had the same starting quarterback.
56. Michael Millken has always been a philanthropist promoting prostate cancer research.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Update on US Air Force Cyber War, Cyberspace Command, and Cyber Control System.
Managing Brain Memory Overflow: "IBM is unveiling a new software memory assist system for mobile devices, dubbed 'PENSIEVE', that collects, stores, and cross references information that you might otherwise forget about, that will be forever lost to other things and events in your life."
Monday, August 18, 2008
Recovering text from damaged historical manuscripts with CAPTCHAs:
Researchers are now reporting on a successful way to identify the words that computers can't handle: turn them into CAPTCHAs, and get people to do the work...
Scanned text is subjected to analysis by two optical character recognition programs; in cases where the programs disagree, the questionable word is converted into a CAPTCHA. It, along with a control word of known identity (used for cases where a bot is trying to crack the CAPTCHA) are then distributed to participating websites...
Each OCR software program managed about 84 percent accuracy but, when their results were combined with the reCAPTCHA system, the overall accuracy shot up to 99.1 percent.
Friday, August 15, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
The Michael Phelps diet:
Breakfast: Three fried-egg sandwiches loaded with cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, fried onions and mayonnaise. Two cups of coffee. One five-egg omelet. One bowl of grits. Three slices of French toast topped with powdered sugar. Three chocolate-chip pancakes.Only 12,000 calories a day!
Lunch: One pound of enriched pasta. Two large ham and cheese sandwiches with mayo on white bread. Energy drinks packing 1,000 calories.
Dinner: One pound of pasta. An entire pizza. More energy drinks.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Quiz of the day: "How many of the 100 most common English words can you guess in 5 minutes?"
I scored 45/100. (Via BBspot.)
I scored 45/100. (Via BBspot.)
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
Invisibility devices, long the realm of science fiction and fantasy, have moved closer after scientists engineered a material that can bend visible light around objects.(Via Linkfilter.)
...It follows earlier work at Imperial College London that achieved similar results with microwaves. Like light, these are a form of electromagnetic radiation but their longer wave-length makes them far easier to manipulate. Achieving the same effect with visible light is a big advance.
Friday, August 08, 2008
Eric Raymond writes about swordfighting camp, geekery, adrenalin, and evolutionary biology. (Via Transterrestrial Musings.)
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
Clever parking garage directions:
In Melbourne I developed a way-finding-system for the Eureka Tower Carpark. The distored letters on the wall can be read perfectly when standing at the right position. This project won several international design awards.(Via BBspot.)
Tuesday, August 05, 2008
Monday, August 04, 2008
"Survey of instant-messagers finds any two people just 6.6 degrees apart":
With records of 30 billion electronic conversations among 180 million people from around the world, researchers have concluded that any two people on average are distanced by just 6.6 degrees of separation, meaning that they could be linked by a string of seven or fewer acquaintances.Here's the abstract and the full paper (PDF format).
The database covered all of the Microsoft Messenger instant-messaging network in June 2006, or roughly half the world's instant-messaging traffic at that time, researchers said.
Sunday, August 03, 2008
Friday, August 01, 2008
"Shimano is launching an electronic shifting system for high-end road bikes":
By replacing the conventional levers that pull wound-steel cables through protective housings with solid-state switches and rubber-coated wires, there's no chance for road gunk to clog things up and interfere with shifting, or, for that matter, your post-ride beer...
The derailleurs, whose job is to move the chain from gear to gear as you shift, talk to each other and automatically adjust so the chain doesn't rub. They also calibrate themselves, so you don't have to play with cable tension to maintain shift quality as cables stretch and the chain and cogs wear.