alex mizell -- 49% sacred, 51% profane
you are peeping the 20 most recent tracks my funky friend
The case of the 500-mile email: "We're having a problem sending email out of the department."
"What's the problem?" I asked.
"We can't send mail more than 500 miles," the chairman explained.
I choked on my latte. "Come again?"
BBC News – Laser fusion test results raise energy hopes: The goal is to harness the power of the largest laser ever built to start "ignition" – effectively a carefully controlled thermonuclear explosion.
It is markedly different from current nuclear power, which operates through splitting atoms – fission – rather than squashing them together in fusion.
Proving that such a lab-based fusion reaction can release more energy than is required to start it – rising above the so-called breakeven point – could herald a new era in large-scale energy production.
Machine Learning with Quantum Algorithms: A new type of machine, a so-called quantum computer, can help here. Quantum computers take advantage of the laws of quantum physics to provide new computational capabilities. While quantum mechanics has been foundational to the theories of physics for about a hundred years the picture of reality it paints remains enigmatic. This is largely because at the scale of our every day experience quantum effects are vanishingly small and can usually not be observed directly. Consequently, quantum computers astonish us with their abilities. Let’s take unstructured search as an example. Assume I hide a ball in a cabinet with a million drawers. How many drawers do you have to open to find the ball? Sometimes you may get lucky and find the ball in the first few drawers but at other times you have to inspect almost all of them. So on average it will take you 500,000 peeks to find the ball. Now a quantum computer can perform such a search looking only into 1000 drawers.
Google Launches Public DNS to Speed Up Web – Reviews by PC Magazine: Users who want to try out the new Google DNS servers can change their DNS settings to 22.214.171.124 or 126.96.36.199, as its instructions describe. Google strongly recommends, however, that users copy down their existing settings. Interestingly, Google also provides telephone support for its Public DNS as well.
bwapi – Project Hosting on Google Code: The Brood War Application Programming Interface (BWAPI) is a free and open source C++ framework for creating AI modules for Starcraft: Broodwar. Using BWAPI, programmers can retrieve information on players and individual units in Starcraft as well as issue a wide variety of commands to units, opening the doors for custom AIs with new micro and macro algorithms.
Large Hadron Collider: Damaged by a Time-Traveling Bird?: In a series of audacious papers, Nielsen and Ninomiya have suggested that setbacks to the LHC occur because of "reverse chronological causation," which is to say, sabotage from the future. The papers suggest that the Higgs boson may be "abhorrent to nature" and the LHC's creation of the Higgs sometime in the future sends ripples backward through time to scupper its own creation.
Strangers in Paradise: Strangers in Paradise is the story of the lure, seduction and potential addiction of creating a “second life” online. Imagined lives in a virtual world, where users can make their dreams come true — what could possibly be wrong with that? For some, a lot. The fallout of a fictional virtual life can have far-reaching repercussions for their real lives.
Algae and Light Help Injured Mice Walk Again | Magazine: In the summer of 2007, a team of Stanford graduate students dropped a mouse into a plastic basin. The mouse sniffed the floor curiously. It didn’t seem to care that a fiber-optic cable was threaded through its skull. Nor did it seem to mind that the right half of its motor cortex had been reprogrammed.
One of the students flipped a switch and intense blue light shone through the cable into the mouse’s brain, illuminating it with an eerie glow. Instantly, the mouse began running in counterclockwise circles as though hell-bent on winning a murine Olympics.
Then the light went off, and the mouse stopped. Sniffed. Stood up on its hind legs and looked directly at the students as if to ask, “Why the hell did I just do that?” And the students whooped and cheered like this was the most important thing they’d ever seen.
Irrational Decisions Anchoring and Arbitrary Coherence: Professor Ariely describes some experiments which demonstrated something he calls arbitrary coherence. Basically it means that once you contemplate a decision or actually make a decision, it will heavily influence your subsequent decisions. Thats the coherence part. Your brain will try to keep your decisions consistent with previous decisions you have made. Ive read about that many times before, but what was surprising in this book was the the arbitrary part. The initial anchoring factor can be totally arbitrary, but it will still heavily influence your subsequent decisions.
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