Is Ebola the New Jaws?
Oct28

Is Ebola the New Jaws?

In 1975, Steven Spielberg directed a movie derived from a Peter Benchley novel called “Jaws.It was the story of a gigantic white shark terrorizing a resort town, killing a number of swimmers and the shark hunters who went after it. This realistic film was a major hit, the highest grossing film up until that time, frightening and intimidating moviegoers all over the country and eventually the world. People were talking about it for...

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Liberal or Conservative? How Your Brain Reacts to Disgusting Images Reveals Your Political Affiliation
Oct27

Liberal or Conservative? How Your Brain Reacts to Disgusting Images Reveals Your Political Affiliation

Conservatives and liberals really are wired differently. Scientists can accurately predict whether a subject is left-wing tree-hugger or a right-wing gun-toter based on how their brains respond to certain images, a new study in Current Biology has found. P. Read Montague, a scientist at Virginia Tech, said his experiment was inspired by data that shows...

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Freezing Worker Eggs: Are Apple and Facebook Playing God? (Germany, France, Switzerland)
Oct24

Freezing Worker Eggs: Are Apple and Facebook Playing God? (Germany, France, Switzerland)

Over the past year and a half, as the scale of the global mass surveillance being pursued by the National Security Agency in collaboration with America’s tech giants has become clear, these corporations – Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft – have become objects of derision for Americans and people around the world. Now it seems there is new cause to look upon these firms with suspicion. Over the course of the past...

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It’s Pizza Time
Oct19

It’s Pizza Time

Who doesn’t love pizza? While I would be hesitant to call pizza the “ultimate food,” it’s hard to deny that few things go over quite as well with large groups of people. Pizza always seems to be on the menu, any time of day and for any reason. Best of all, on the surface, pizza...

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What would you do if you were groped in public?
Oct17

What would you do if you were groped in public?

In the shadow of #gamergate*, here’s a refreshing story of empowerment and focused anger. And another way your smartphone is your friend. Nude photos, rape threats, mass shooting scares: Welcome to the disturbing chaos of #Gamergate http://t.co/4Hd5ZgLz5r pic.twitter.com/5SfMKCD0M6 — Mother Jones (@MotherJones) October 16, 2014 Imagine you’re walking down a city street, minding your own business. You notice a guy following...

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Microsoft CEO tells women that their salary rests on karma, then retracts
Oct10

Microsoft CEO tells women that their salary rests on karma, then retracts

At the Grace Hopper celebration of women in computing, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella gave this bit of career advise to the assembled audience of 8,000 women: “It’s not really about asking for a raise, but knowing and having faith that the system will give you the right raise” … because “all HR systems are long-term efficient, short-term inefficient.” Satya Nadella, 8 October 2014 Grace Hopper conference As you might...

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Cartoon: iPhone 6 plus
Oct09

Cartoon: iPhone 6 plus

See great cartoons by all the top political cartoonists at http://cagle.com. To license this cartoon for your own site, visit...

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Privacy and Democracy
Oct07

Privacy and Democracy

Privacy is not a concern for citizens in totalitarian states where autocrats or the ruling group want to be all knowing. Those in power try to eliminate private thoughts or communications, their goal being to prevent their overthrow by the people or other groups in opposition. Invasion of citizens’ privacy by government surveillance and various high tech corporations in democratic nations has only become a matter of general interest...

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The End Of Lotus 123
Oct06

The End Of Lotus 123

One of my first experiences with PC programs was Lotus 123.  As a scientist and engineer it was a blessing.  Originally I used it on a pre-Windows DOS PC and was often a pain in the you know what but it still made my job much easier.  I can say the same for the pre – Windows word processor WordPerfect.  Well 123 is on it’s way to the software grave yard. So farewell 1-2-3. It may not have been the first computer...

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SciFi Weekend: Tuesday Shows Go Dark (SHIELD and Person of Interest); Sleepy Hollow; Under The Dome (“Nothing But A Giant Suck Hole”); Doctor Who; Outlander; Arrow; Gotham; Shatner Star Trek Rumors; If Ayn Rand Wrote Buffy
Sep28

SciFi Weekend: Tuesday Shows Go Dark (SHIELD and Person of Interest); Sleepy Hollow; Under The Dome (“Nothing But A Giant Suck Hole”); Doctor Who; Outlander; Arrow; Gotham; Shatner Star Trek Rumors; If Ayn Rand Wrote Buffy

Tuesday night featured the return of two television shows which have both changed for the post-Snowden era, Agents of SHIELD and Person of Interest. On each show the heroes are now working in secret, or even greater secrecy than they had operated in the past. The premiere of Agents of SHIELD was not as good as the final episodes of the first season following Captain America: The Winter Soldier but did show promise of setting up a far...

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Russia insists that citizen data be retained on in-country servers
Sep27

Russia insists that citizen data be retained on in-country servers

Bits are not atoms, no matter how hard governments insist that they be treated as such. The latest “thou shalt treat them the same” edict came from the Russian bear. According to Roskomnadzor, the Russian government’s mass media and telecom overseer, Google, Facebook and Twitter must register as “organizers of information distribution” and “keep information about their Russian users on servers...

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Despite Rising Voice of Climate Movement, Global Leaders Dither
Sep24

Despite Rising Voice of Climate Movement, Global Leaders Dither

Despite Rising Voice of Climate Movement, Global Leaders Dither By Nick Cunningham The largest ever gathering for climate action took place in New York on Sept. 21, just two days ahead of a major negotiations on a climate treaty between global leaders at the United Nations. The “People’s Climate March” attracted an estimated 400,000 people and the message to the political class was clear: stop dithering – it’s time for meaningful...

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Why a UN Climate Agreement Cannot be Reached
Sep22

Why a UN Climate Agreement Cannot be Reached

This week the UN will convene a climate summit where Secretary General Ban Ki Moon will ask leaders to bring “bold announcements and actions that will reduce emissions, strengthen climate resilience, and mobilize political will for a meaningful legal agreement in 2015.” For those who have marched in cities around the world this weekend demanding change, the summit offers a new opportunity to finally set the world on a corrective path...

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Study finds people attracted to the smell of those with the same politics
Sep21

Study finds people attracted to the smell of those with the same politics

Politics stink? Maybe. A new study reveals that people are attracted to the smell of others with similar political opinions – an idea that also helps explain why so many couples share political views. This is no random conclusion. Researchers from three major universities persuaded 125 participants to evaluate the body odor of 21 “strong” liberal… graphic via...

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On the Internet There’s No Such Thing as a True Science Denier
Sep21

On the Internet There’s No Such Thing as a True Science Denier

On the Internet There’s No Such Thing as a True Science Denier By Tina Dupuy Science isn’t like religion in that you can’t just pick and choose the science you don’t concur with. You can’t, say, believe in evolution, but not for species you think are gross. Or think gravity is a sound theory but it only pertains to left-handed Oregonians. Or accept atomic theory but only for people named Adam. You get the...

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Packing Your Nose With Pork Strips Stops Nosebleeds: ‘Improbable Research’
Sep21

Packing Your Nose With Pork Strips Stops Nosebleeds: ‘Improbable Research’

Believe it or not, there are legitimate Nobel prizes out there for scientists who make bizarre and seemingly silly — but important — discoveries. They’re called Ig Nobel Prizes, and this year’s winners studied a wide array of fun topics from reindeers to the slippery-ness of banana peels. The Ig Nobel Prizes are also known...

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Apple does something really right
Sep19

Apple does something really right

I’m no fan of Apple. But I really like their latest move. It’s a dilly. Apple said Wednesday night that it is making it impossible for the company to turn over data from most iPhones or iPads to police — even when they have a search warrant — taking a hard new line as tech companies attempt to blunt allegations that they have too readily participated in government efforts to collect user information. The move, announced...

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FCC receives 3+ million comments on #netNeutality, takes another look at mobile
Sep18

FCC receives 3+ million comments on #netNeutality, takes another look at mobile

The FCC received 1,776,471 emails and 1,297,691 electronic comments on its network neutrality proposal from late April to September 15. On Wednesday, the agency released daily and weekly data totaling 3,074,162 comments. The comment period officially opened on May 15, but the email account was established April 24. This explains the different start dates on the two charts. The first bump in daily online comments chart followed John...

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‘Zionists Planned ISIS’: Justice Official’s Tweet Reflects Wider Problem (Het Parool, The Netherlands)
Sep17

‘Zionists Planned ISIS’: Justice Official’s Tweet Reflects Wider Problem (Het Parool, The Netherlands)

What should be done? We in the West have a right to free speech, but free speech can be a dangerous thing. It isn’t a new problem, but in the Netherlands they are dealing with a particularly acute case. Last month, Justice Ministry official Yasmina Haifi tweeted that the Islamic State was part of a ‘Zionist plot’ to blacken the name of Islam, and was promptly suspended from her job with … wait for it …...

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Martian Meteorite Yields More Evidence Of The Possibility Of Life On Mars
Sep17

Martian Meteorite Yields More Evidence Of The Possibility Of Life On Mars

Katie Brewin/Aeron Haworth, The University of Manchester A tiny fragment of Martian meteorite 1.3 billion years old is helping to make the case for the possibility of life on Mars, say scientists. The finding of a ‘cell-like’ structure, which investigators now know once held water, came about as a result of collaboration between scientists in...

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