January 21, 2010
Source: xkcd webcomics
Source: TechCrunch — February 1, 2011 | Alexia Tsotsis
TechCrunch | Geo-location has come to this: After three weeks in review, Wheretheladies.at, a web app that aggregates Foursquare checkins by the female gender, is now available on the iPhone. The concept OF A BIG COMPASS POINTING YOU IN THE DIRECTION OF LADIES is so unprecedented that Apple actually called co-founder Jeff Hodsdon on his cellphone to ask about the app during the review process.
Co-founded by… read more
The making of visual effects for Cloverfield. In the second video: “Subway Parasites” segment from the Cloverfield DVD’s “Cloverfield Visual Effects” extra. This 2008 disaster/monster “mockumentary” was directed by Matt Reeves, produced by J. J. Abrams and written by Drew Goddard.
The film follows six New Yorkers attending a party on the night that a gigantic monster of unknown origin attacks the city. All footage is shot from the perspective of… read more
An article, “Why Do Dachshunds Have Short Legs? Science Has an Answer,” in R&D, July 17, 2009, reminds me of an observation. In the language of computer programming, a retrogene is a patch on a pre-existing piece of software. Could it be that the entire embryogenic/genomic network that dictates a creature’s morphology is nothing more than a set of onion-skin layers or patches on conserved coded-machinery that has worked before? If so, it’s going to take a lot of industrial-strength gene-insertion genomics to unravel it, since it has no real logic that would help us make sense of it and guide us to a proper reading frame. (This is more evidence that there’s no “intelligence” in the “Intelligent Design” of Darwinian evolution).… read more
Seeing Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland in IMAX 3-D (which continues as No. 1 in box office sales for the second weekend in a row), I thought that the Jabberwocky poem came from the original Alice in Wonderland, but it didn’t. It came from the sequel, Through the Looking Glass.
Recall that Lewis Carroll was a professor of mathematics at Oxford University before he was more well-known as the… read more
Singer/Songwriter Paul Dempsey describes the inspiration for his track “Ramona Was a Waitress,” off his album Everything is True:
“It’s an unusual song, ‘Ramona Was a Waitress.’ It’s about a guy arguing with an artificial-intelligent robot waitress about mortality,” says Dempsey. ”Sort of an unusual subject for a pop song but that’s just what I was thinking about as I scrawled the lyrics. Artificial intelligence and conscious robots arguing about… read more
Google Labs has launched Julia Map, a fractal renderer in HTML 5. which lets you generate and explore fractals — specifically, the Julia set and Mandelbrot set — with just a browser (no need to launch a program).
In a significant medical prothesis breakthrough, Rob Summers, 25, a pitcher for Oregon State University who was completely paralyzed below the chest five years ago after being struck by a vehicle in a hit-and-run accident, can now stand on his own for up to four minutes at a time — without support — and up to 25 minutes with assistance provided only for balance.
What’s especially exciting about this… read more
I don’t write to our whole community often, but this week is special because it’s the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and many people don’t know that Meetup is a 9/11 baby.
Let me tell you the Meetup story. I was living a couple miles from the Twin Towers, and I was the kind of person who thought local community doesn’t matter much if we’ve got the… read more
video | Google
Interview with Ray & Amy Kurzweil, author of book Flying Couch: a graphic memoir.
summary from Google | Ray Kurzweil, best selling author and a director of engineering at Google, in conversation with his daughter Amy Kurzweil, New Yorker cartoonist and author of the critically acclaimed graphic memoir Flying Couch.
Ray & Amy Kurzweil discuss their creative work, inspirations, and… read more
Welcome to our new weekly Health Tips column, covering breaking news of medical findings and other health-related information you can use now, or in the near future. This week: new stroke treatments, toxins in food packaging and cashier receipts, and new risks from alcohol and sugary drinks.
Three new stroke treatments: DHA, found in fish oil, protects the brain from damage and enhances recovery, even five hours… read more
In the science-fiction movie Source Code (April 1 release), a secret program called “Source Code” sends a pilot back in time to cross over into another man’s identity and relive the last eight minutes of the passenger’s life on a train.
“People… read more