Thursday, September 29, 2022

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

New Non-Stick

"Scientists break down silk to invent extremely efficient non-stick material". (Via H.R.)

Monday, September 26, 2022

Light Posting Notice

Admin note: Posting may be very light this week, due to external obligations.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Stone Skipper

"Stone Skipping Is a Lost Art. Kurt Steiner Wants the World to Find It."

Video of the current world record 88 skip throw:

Dental Microrobots

"These shape-shifting microrobots can brush and floss your teeth". (Via H.R.)

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

$2 Paper Microscope

"He Invented a $2 Paper Microscope For Remote Lab Work So Scientists Don’t Have to Haul Heavy Equipment"

Timing Laughter

"Scientists try to teach robot to laugh at the right time"

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Daring Fireball On iPhone 14 Pro

John Gruber offers extensive commentary on the new iPhone 14 Pro, and he really likes it.

Data Searches At US Border

WaPo: "Customs officials have copied Americans' phone data at massive scale".

Key excerpts of the first article:

[T]he revelation that thousands of agents have access to a searchable database without public oversight is a new development in what privacy advocates and some lawmakers warn could be an infringement of Americans’ Fourth Amendment rights against unreasonable searches and seizures.

In a 2018 filing, a CBP official said an officer could access any device, including in cases where they have no suspicion the traveler has done anything wrong, and look at anything that “would ordinarily be visible by scrolling through the phone manually,” including contact lists, calendar entries, messages, photos and videos.

If officers have a “reasonable suspicion” that the traveler is breaking the law or poses a “national security concern,” they can run an “advanced search,” connecting the phone to a device that copies its contents. That data is then stored in the Automated Targeting System database, which CBP officials can search at any time.

Here are some tips on how best to protect your data privacy at the border crossing.


Monday, September 19, 2022

iOS Features

"All the New Privacy and Security Features in Apple iOS 16"

What If? 2

"What If? 2 is here with even more serious answers to your weird questions".

Includes nice interview with author Randal Munroe.

Friday, September 16, 2022

Color Math

"Math error: A new study overturns 100-year-old understanding of color perception".

Direct link to academic abstract: "The non-Riemannian nature of perceptual color space"

Antarctica Internet

"SpaceX hits a milestone as Starlink arrives in Antarctica, high-speed internet now available on all seven continents". (Via H.R.)

Thursday, September 15, 2022

DNA Jeopardy

"San Francisco sued by woman who says her rape-kit DNA was used to arrest her"

San Francisco has been sued by a sexual assault victim in a complaint that describes "the San Francisco Police Department's shocking practice of placing crime victims' DNA into a permanent database without the victims' knowledge or consent."

"Plaintiff Jane Doe, a sexual assault survivor, was re-victimized by this unconstitutional practice," alleged the lawsuit filed Monday in US District Court for the Northern District of California. "In 2016, she provided a DNA sample to the San Francisco Police Department as part of its investigation into her sexual assault. However, she never consented to it to be stored or used for any other purpose. Nevertheless, the Department maintained Plaintiff Doe's DNA in the database for more than six years."

According to the lawsuit, Jane Doe was arrested on burglary charges in 2021 after DNA from a crime scene apparently matched the DNA she provided five years earlier. The charges were eventually dropped...


Quantum-Resistant Algorithms

"What are quantum-resistant algorithms -- and why do we need them?"

Wednesday, September 14, 2022

Realistic Synthetic Embryos

"This startup wants to copy you into an embryo for organ harvesting; With plans to create realistic synthetic embryos, grown in jars, Renewal Bio is on a journey to the horizon of science and ethics."

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

New 3-D Gear

This is a cool video and a slick idea. I'm also amazed that the idea of inventing a new type of gear is still possible in the 21st century.

Cheaper Storage

"New optical disc tech could make $5 per TB possible". (Via H.R.)

Monday, September 05, 2022

AI Art Wins Contest

"An AI-Generated Artwork Won First Place at a State Fair Fine Arts Competition, and Artists Are Pissed": 

A man came in first at the Colorado State Fair’s fine art competition using an AI generated artwork on Monday. “I won first place,” a user going by Sincarnate said in a Discord post above photos of the AI-generated canvases hanging at the fair.


Sunday, September 04, 2022

AF all Snafu

"The Air Force Just Survived a Reply-All Apocalypse"

Friday, September 02, 2022

Producing Oxygen On Mars

"MIT's MOXIE takes a huge step toward human life on Mars with oxygen production". (Via H.R.)