Cultivated Disinterest in Professional Sports
Like many of my friends, I have treated professional sports with cultivated indifference. But a year and a half ago, I decided to become a football fan. Several years ago, I was at a talk by Michae...
" This ignorance among highly educated people limits our ability to communicate, bond, and build relationships across different segments of society. It limits our ability to engage in conversations and build a common culture that crosses our highly stratified and segmented societies. "Posted on 2015-01-31T01:23:33+0000
The Surprising Secret of India’s Success Could Be its Brain Drain
For decades, developing country governments have struggled with what is called the “brain drain” but new research suggests in India’s case it could be a good thing.
Student fury over 'impossible' exam
Final year economics students at Sheffield University are furious after an exam this week contained "impossible" questions.
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An Introduction to Computer Networks
A free and open textbook covering computer networks and networking principles, focused primarily on TCP/IP
How Patrick McKenzie (patio11) Builds Twilio Apps
You may know Patrick McKenzie as patio11 on the interwebs. He's the: founder of Bingo Card Creator highest rated commenter on Hacker News author of Sel
The real reason measles cases spiked in 2014: the Ohio Amish
Last year was terrible for measles in the United States: there were 644 cases — the highest annual caseload in two decades. Granola-crunching Californians, wealthy Oregonians, and Jenny McCarthy...
""We all took the vaccine after that. I had one shot, and I still took the other one and we had all our kids vaccinated, too. After people saw how sick people got, they changed their minds.""
I sometimes feel one major reason people don't get their kids vaccinated is that they've forgotten how horrible these diseases can bePosted on 2015-01-29T17:09:54+0000
The Free Code Camp Blog: A Vision of Coding, Without Opening your Eyes
The Day the Purpose of College Changed
On February 28, 1967, Gov. Ronald Reagan spoke of "certain intellectual luxuries that perhaps we could do without." Here's why liberal education has never recovered.
A Gentle Primer on Reverse Engineering | Emily St.
Over the weekend at Women Who Hack I gave a short demonstration on reverse engineering. I wanted to show how “cracking” works, to give a better understanding of how programs work once they’re compiled. It also serves my abiding interest in processors and other low-level stuff from the 80s.
Who Owns Los Angeles?
"What is this you call property?”, asked Massasoit, the leader of the Native American Wampanoag tribe. “It cannot be the earth, for the land is our mother, nourishing all her children, beasts, bird...
One Week of Harassment on Twitter
Ever since I began my Tropes vs Women in Video Games project, two and a half years ago, I’ve been harassed on a daily basis by irate gamers angry at my critiques of sexism in video games. It can...
YouTube now defaults to HTML5 <video>
Main is usually a function. So then when is it not?
It began when my coworker, despite already knowing how to program, was forced to take the intro level Computer Science course at my university. We joked with...
All the Technology but None of the Love - Jacques Mattheij
This post has been re-written several times, so please forgive me if it does not come across as coherent as I would like to. The main reason for the …
" Please do not become one of those people in tech that are just in it for the money but that actually hate the technology itself."
This is full of gemsPosted on 2015-01-27T17:04:01+0000
Source Code Similarities: Experts Unmask 'Regin' Trojan as NSA Tool - SPIEGEL ONLINE - News -...
Just weeks ago, SPIEGEL published the source code of an NSA malware program known internally as QWERTY. Now, experts have found that it is none other than the notorious trojan Regin, used in dozens of cyber attacks around the world.
Police urge Google to turn off feature warning drivers of officers' location
Authorities claim popular mobile app Waze could put lives in danger from would-be cop-killers who can find where targets are parked
Rooftop solar is now cheaper than the grid in 42 American cities
Homeowners in some of the largest U.S. cities can get a better return from rooftop solar than from a pension fund or the S&P 500, a new study found.
Holy Shit, I Interviewed the President
Bethany Mota, Glozell Green, and I got an opportunity that a lot of people don’t think we deserved.
" Legacy media isn’t mocking us because we aren’t a legitimate source of information; they’re mocking us because they’re terrified. Their legitimacy came from the fact that they have access to distribution channels and that they get to be in the White House press pool because of some long-ago established procedures that assumed they would use that power in the public interest. In reality, those things are becoming less and less important and less and less true. Distribution is free to anyone with a cell phone and the legitimacy of cable news sounds to me like an oxymoron. The median-aged CNN viewer is 60. For Fox, it’s 68."Posted on 2015-01-26T17:48:47+0000
Has Technology Killed the Jewelry Industry?
Jewelry sales continue to plummet. Are iPhones and Kindles to blame?
" The last few birthdays and Christmases have yielded vacation getaways, iPhones of every generation, even a smart home thermostat. What hasn’t shown up under the Christmas tree in the last five years? Diamond anything."Posted on 2015-01-26T17:40:50+0000
Chemists find a way to unboil eggs
UC Irvine and Australian chemists have figured out how to unboil egg whites – an innovation that could dramatically reduce costs for cancer treatments, food production and other segments of the $160 billion global biotechnology industry, according to findings published today in the journal ChemBioCh…
Chris Granger - Coding is not the new literacy
Despite the good intentions behind the movement to get people to code, both the basic premise and approach are flawed. The movement sits on the idea that "coding is the new literacy," but that takes a narrow view of what literacy really is.
" To put it simply, the next great advance in human ability comes from being able to externalize the mental models we spend our entire lives creating."Posted on 2015-01-26T16:59:27+0000
SleuthSayers: The $3500 Shirt - A History Lesson in Economics
Fascinating stuff, Eve. By the way, have you looked at the bottom of page 188 of the July August issue of AHMM? It is worth your while.
What should I do about Youtube?
My Google Youtube rep contacted me the other day. They were nice and took time to explain everything clearly to me, but the message was firm: I have to decide. I need to sign on to the new Youtube...
I paid $25 for an Invisible Boyfriend, and I think I might be in love.
The new service creates the man or woman of your dreams and helps you fake a convincing digital relationship.
Tech billionaire’s gnarly fight with California surfers over private beach
State may use powers never employed in 77-year history, seizing private land for public use to end a battle with venture-capital investor Vinod Khosla
Text-Only Video Games Don’t Need Graphics to Be Beautiful, Innovative, and Complex. Hadean Lands...
The best video game I played last year is a science-fiction thriller about alchemy, and it has no graphics or sound effects. With little more than text, it manages to be far more impressive and innovative than the last Metal Gear Solid game. Hadean Lands is a text adventure, a genre also known...
Improving Linux networking performance [LWN.net]
As network adapters get faster, the time between packets (i.e. the time the kernel has to process each packet) gets smaller. With current 10Gb adapters, there are 1,230ns between two 1538-byte packets. 40Gb networking cuts that time down significantly, to 307ns. Naturally, 100Gb exacerbates the prob…
New amazing metal is so hydrophobic it makes water bounce like magic
Scientists at the University of Rochester have created a metal that is so extremely hydrophobic that the water bounces on it as if it were repelled by a magic force field. Instead of using chemical coatings they used lasers to etch a nanostructure on the metal itself. It will not wear off, like curr…
16 Things | Andreessen Horowitz
We don’t invest in themes; we invest in special founders with breakthrough ideas. Which means we don’t make investments based on a pre-existing thesis about a category. That said, here are a few of the things we’ve been observing or thinking about; we’re especially grateful to our founders/companies…
Saudi King Abdullah dies aged 91
Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz has died in hospital aged in his 90s, state TV says
This will be interesting to see how it plays out.
Also, news agencies, it's disappointing to see how you can't even get the age of a world leader right.Posted on 2015-01-22T23:46:31+0000
My First BillG Review - Joel on Software
How things worked at Microsoft (before the party moved elsewhere).
2015 Gates Annual Letter
See how the lives of people in poor countries will improve faster in the next 15 years than they have in any other time in history. And join us!
Using NYC Taxi Data to identify muslim taxi drivers
Remember that NYC Taxi data set that allowed you to see who visited a gentlemen's clubs and which celebrity took a taxi where? Reddit user uluman now seems to have found a way to distinguish muslim...
America’s best-selling cars and trucks are built on lies: The rise of fake engine noise
The engine growl in some of America’s best-selling cars and trucks is actually a finely tuned bit of lip-syncing or digitally faked altogether — and it’s driving car enthusiasts insane.
“If you’re going to do that stuff, do that stuff. Own it. Tell customers: If you want a V-8 rumble, you’ve gotta buy a V-8 that costs more, gets worse gas mileage and hurts the Earth,” Brauer said. “You’re fabricating the car’s sexiness. You’re fabricating performance elements of the car that don’t actually exist. That just feels deceptive to me.”Posted on 2015-01-22T02:26:56+0000
A Comprehensive Guide to Building a Scalable Web App on Amazon Web Services - Part 1
How to Think About AWS & Scalability, Key AWS Services, Architecture Concepts including Security, Dockers, Containers and more
Our Exclusive Hands-On With Microsoft's Unbelievable New Holographic Goggles | WIRED
The prototype is amazing. It amplifies the special powers that Kinect introduced, using a small fraction of the energy. Project HoloLens’ key achievement—realistic holograms—works by tricking your brain into seeing light as matter.
Retiring Python as a Teaching Language
I'm James Hague, a recovering programmer who has been designing video games since the 1980s. This is Why You Spent All that Time Learning to Program and The Pure Tech Side is the Dark Side are good places to start.
HealthCare.gov sends personal data to dozens of tracking websites
The Associated Press reports that healthcare.gov–the flagship site of the Affordable Care Act, where millions of Americans have signed up to receive health care–is quietly sending personal health information to a number of third party websites. The information being sent includes ones zip code, inco…
How Uber and Lyft have exploited long waits, slow travel and poor service to crack open...
An inside look at the behavior of riders in San Francisco.
" In one of their more striking findings, Rayle and co-authors found that 66 percent of the trips taken by people who use these app services would have been twice as long if taken by public transit instead (that's if nearby transit was at least available). That number includes all of the time spent just waiting for the trip to begin. "Posted on 2015-01-21T17:12:07+0000
Is 'SimCity' Homelessness a Bug or a Feature?
A new 600-page, two volume epic about how to get rid of the homeless in SimCity.
" "To me video games are the so-called 'real America,'" he said. "The real America operates according to a video game logic, and that game logic is neo-liberalism, and that absolutely manifests in San Francisco, that to me is the epicenter of inequality. In San Francisco you either have a Tesla and you drink a seven dollar cappuccino or you're homeless in the streets.""Posted on 2015-01-21T17:04:40+0000
A Designer's War on Misleading Parking Signs
The story of a girl who got too many parking tickets, and dared to dream of a better tomorrow.
SpaceX Sells 10% Stake to Google, Fidelity for $1 Billion
Space Exploration Technologies Corp., the rocket maker run by billionaire Elon Musk, said that Google Inc. and Fidelity Investments have invested $1 billion that will give them a combined stake of almost 10 percent.
Animal Welfare at Risk in Experiments for Meat Industry
In the past 50 years, lamb chops have gotten bigger, pork loins less fatty and steaks easier to chew — all thanks in part to the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center. But these achievements have come at a steep cost to the center’s animals.
" Roger Ellis, a scientist and veterinarian who now works for a cattle nutrition company, said that when he determined about 10 years ago that a sheep had died at least in part from neglect, a center official pressed him to “soften the diagnosis.” Dr. Ellis said that he refused, and that the center had an outside veterinarian change the death record."Posted on 2015-01-20T17:56:08+0000
What the Web Said Yesterday
The Web is continually erasing its past. The Wayback Machine aims to preserve its tracks. Jill Lepore reports.
Google Nears $1 Billion Investment in SpaceX
Google Inc. is close to investing roughly $1 billion in Space Exploration Technologies Corp. to support its nascent efforts to deliver Internet access via satellites.
Scalability! But at what COST?
Michael Isard, Derek Murray, and I recently sent in a HotOS submission (it’s not blind, so no harm talking about it, we think). The subject is hinted at from...
" Here are two helpful guidelines (for largely disjoint populations):
If you are going to use a big data system for yourself, see if it is faster than your laptop.
If you are going to build a big data system for others, see that it is faster than my laptop."
A Localization Horror Story: It Could Happen To You - Locale::Maketext::TPJ13 - search.cpan.org
Imagine that your task for the day is to localize a piece of software -- and luckily for you, the only output the program emits is two messages, like this:
Obama calls for government-run high-speed internet
The president is visiting Cedar Falls, IA, today to make the case for city governments to build their own super-fast broadband networks.
A City Run by Children
At KidZania, a global theme-park chain, kids pretend to have grownup jobs, from dentist to factory worker. Rebecca Mead reports.
" They said that KidZania gave them what they desired most of all: a sense of autonomy. “Whenever you’re at home, your parents say, ‘You need to do this, this, and this,’ and you say, ‘I don’t want to do this,’ ” the boy with the overwhelming social-media presence told me. “But, when you’re in KidZania, you feel like you’re an adult, and you say what you want to do.” "Posted on 2015-01-14T17:40:38+0000
Bees, Inc.: Save the Honeybee, Sterilize the Earth
A decade ago, people started panicking about the collapse of the honeybee population and the crash of our food supply.
The Rise and Fall of the Lone Game Developer
But the industry had changed. The days of the solitary, brilliant, auteur developer had passed like rain on the mountain.
" When I was in college they told us there would always be a demand for software developers. In general that’s still true.
I always wondered what it would look like when it stopped being true, when the need for developers dwindled, and programming stopped paying the bills.
Now I know.
For the lone game programmer that day has already arrived.
Twice."Posted on 2015-01-14T02:16:57+0000
Hotter Than Lava
Every day, cops toss dangerous military-style grenades during raids, with little oversight and horrifying results.
Flashbangs are really scary.
"Sometimes loud noises trigger memories of the event. One summer night after the accident, Dukes woke up in a panic. A storm was raging outside and, in her sleepy state, she confused the thunder and lightning for flashbang explosions. She ran into the bathroom once again and curled up on the floor, rocking and saying, “They’re coming, they’re coming.” Her mother found her and asked who was coming. “I said, ‘Them. Please don’t burn me again.’”"Posted on 2015-01-14T02:12:05+0000
Why do all records sound the same?
No, it’s not you — records do all sound the same these days. Desperate to get their music on the radio at all costs, rec…
"Why does most music sound the same these days? Because record companies are scared, they don’t want to take risks, and they’re doing the best they can to generate mainstream radio hits. That is their job, after all. And as the skies continue to darken over the poor benighted business of selling music, labels are going to cling to what they know more fiercely than ever."Posted on 2015-01-13T02:41:17+0000
The Stunning Scale of AWS and What it Means for the Future of the Cloud - High Scalability -
James Hamilton , VP and Distinguished Engineer at Amazon, and long time blogger of interesting ...
"All 14 other cloud providers combined have 1/5th the aggregate capacity of AWS (estimate by Gartner)
Every day, AWS adds enough new server capacity to support all of Amazon’s global infrastructure when it was a $7B annual revenue enterprise (in 2004).
Amazon has designed and built their own power substations. It only saves a little money, but they can build them much faster. Utility companies are not used to dealing with the rate AWS is growing at, so they had to build their own."Posted on 2015-01-13T02:32:43+0000
How to raise successful children — advice from parents lucky enough to know
Tips from Washington-area parents lucky enough to know.
KeySweeper is a stealthy Arduino-based device, camouflaged as a functioning USB wall charger, that wirelessly and passively sniffs, decrypts, logs and reports back (over GSM) all keystrokes from any Microsoft wireless keyboard in the vicinity.
What's new in CPUs since the 80s and how does it affect programmers?
This is a response to the following question from David Albert: My mental model of CPUs is stuck in the 1980s: basically boxes that do arithmetic, …
Nothing you can do impresses me.
Because of the urgent need for new blood / ideas in the tech world, our lack of ability to reward new developers is a particularly profound example of shooting oneself in the foot.
" Seriously, is “Is it responsive?” really the first words you want to come out of your mouth, before you’ve even seen the product? Can you step back, suspend your criticism for just one second, and realize that someone has just completed a shit-ton of work?"
Yup, developers are pretty meanPosted on 2015-01-10T02:36:10+0000
The Foreign Spell
The foreign has long been my stomping ground, my sanctuary, as one who grew up a foreigner wherever I happened to be. Born to Indian parents in Oxford, England, I was seven when my parents moved to Ca
"But all I thought then was that nearly everywhere I knew was foreign, which meant that nearly everywhere had the power to unsettle and surprise me, forever."Posted on 2015-01-10T02:27:08+0000
A Career in Science Will Cost You Your Firstborn
"I hate science." In six years of graduate school, this has to be the phrase I’ve heard most frequently from my colleagues. People who have dedicated their lives to science. People who made a decision...
Anti-vaccination update: How the measles crisis struck Disneyland
As many as 12 measles cases have been connected to visits to Disneyland or Disney's California Adventure Park, California public health authorities say--including at least six occurring in people who were unvaccinated for the disease. Among them were two infants too young for immunizations.
For Sale: “Your Name Here” in a Prestigious Science Journal
An investigation into some scientific papers finds worrying irregularities
The Colombian army sent a hidden message to hostages inside a pop song
To reach hostages held deep in the Colombian jungle, the Colombian army turned to an ad man and wrote a pop song
Antibiotic Pulled From Dirt Ends 25-Year Drug Drought
Scientists have discovered an antibiotic capable of fighting infections that kill hundreds of thousands of people each year, a breakthrough that could lead to the field’s first major new drug in more than a quarter-century.
Wikipedia on HHVM
If you've been watching our GitHub wiki, following us on Twitter, or reading the wikitech-l mailing list, you've probably known for a while that Wikipedia has been transitioning to HHVM. This has been a long process involving lots of work from many different people, and as of a few weeks ago, all no…
Dissecting OpenBSD's divert(4) Part 1: Introduction - Lawrence Teo's Pseudorandom Thoughts
For more than four years I have been using and tinkering with OpenBSD’s divert(4). At one point after OpenBSD 4.9 was released, I ran into an …
This Ingenious Machine Turns Feces Into Drinking Water
Bill Gates recently got to check out the Omniprocessor, an ingenious machine designed and built by Janicki Bioenergy, which turns human waste into water and electricity.
Moonpig are one of the most well known companies that sell personalised greeting cards in the UK. In 2007 they had a 90% market share and shipped nearly 6 million cards. In July 2011 they were bought by PhotoBox. I've...
The California Sunday Magazine
The California Sunday Magazine. January 4, 2015.
Joost's Dev Blog: What most young programmers need to learn