Posts with mood nervous (12)
link friday: the NFL and head injuries, women in science, Antonin Scalia
Posted on 2013-10-11 14:18:00
Tags: football links
I was going to write something about how I don't want to talk about the government shutdown or impending debt ceiling disaster, and then I looked at my list of links and lo and behold, there were a few doing just that.
- This summary of some Republican focus groups is pretty interesting/slightly depressing.
- Atul Gawande has a good short column about Obamacare and Republican obstructionism.
- The 10 Stealth Economic Trends That Rule the World Today - I rolled my eyes at the title, but there was some interesting stuff in here.
- NFL deliberately campaigned against science regarding head injuries - I was going to write a full post about this at some point, but I've been too depressed about it all. Here's the thing: I don't regularly watch football, but I do follow it some. But all this news about head injuries, the pain that many players suffer while playing and after retiring, and (to a much smaller extent) the fact that the NFL receives huge subsidies (did you know the NFL is technically a non-profit?) really make me think that I shouldn't be supporting football for moral reasons. So...I don't know.
- The press-release conviction of a biotech CEO and its impact on scientific research - the CEO was convicted for subdividing his patient group after the fact and touting that the drug worked great on "mild to moderate" sufferers of a disease. Be careful out there, statisticians!
- Why Are There Still So Few Women in Science? - very interesting article by one of the first two women to get a bachelor's degree in physics from Yale.
- WATCH: Rice University placekicker uses a soccer "rabona" to execute an onside kick - nifty little kick. (see: ambivalent comments about football above)
- A long, kinda weird, interview with Antonin Scalia - apparently he has friends "that I know, or very much suspect, are homosexual" but none have come out to him. I wonder why...
Exciting thing #1! and lots of links
Posted on 2011-09-27 11:24:00
As promised: exciting thing #1 is my first An Engineering Mind video! I thought it went decently, but watching myself on video is really hard...
Now, a bunch of links:
- A rational theory behind the Netflix/Qwikster split is that it helps Netflix in negotiations with content providers (a similar Wired article). This makes more sense than anything I've read so far, and the link to an explanation of affiliate fees was very helpful.
- An article showing that salt probably isn't linked to heart disease unless you're hypersensitive to it.
- A good description of why teenagers are so reckless - their brains are still forming in various ways. (thanks David!)
- The MOB makes the New York Times! (although the article is pretty short)
- An example of a particular highway in Massachusetts whose speed limit is artificially low so the police can write more tickets. I think that Texas has a law saying that towns can get no more than a fixed percentage of their budget from traffic tickets, and that's helped similar shenanigans from taking place down here. (thanks David!)
- Don't shine laser pointers at airplane/helicopter pilots - worth it for the video of a guy doing it being arrested.
- A good logic joke (thanks David!)
weekend pictures, my first ad!
Posted on 2010-06-07 10:52:00
Tags: pictures palmpre projects
We went down to Houston this weekend to see the Young Frankenstein musical (verdict: entertaining but not as good as the movie), and ended up seeing a nice backyard with some bees. Also: back in Austin we saw the original Batman movie at the Paramount with Adam West. Pictures of all the above:
The Palm Hot Apps competition will award cash prizes to the 221 most popular free and paid apps on June 30. I think FlightPredictor has a (very) outside shot at winning, so I bought an ad for it on webOSroundup. (it's one of the boxes on the right - doesn't show up every time so you might have to reload) Thanks to destroyerj and skimmerduk for design help!
One year and one day ago, the Palm Pre went on sale - PreCentral has a a good retrospective on what went wrong and what went right.
Posted on 2009-08-17 09:52:00
Tags: pictures palmpre projects links
Pictures from New Mexico and Barbara & Alex's wedding are up. Note that the pictures from the wedding itself aren't that great...I did my best!
Published a Pre version of PasswordHash - it was relatively easy to port. A new feature (in the web and Firefox versions as well) lets you force a special character to appear in the password.
Apparently men who "strongly endorsed old-school notions of masculinity" were half as likely to get flu shots and other preventative medicine. Can't say I'm surprised.
Also, "for men, sexual boredom was correlated with variety in partners (or lack thereof), while for women, it was more related to variety in activity." Good to know? (the Coolidge effect description at Wikipedia is pretty funny)
Finally, an Obama protest I can get behind.
Posted on 2009-07-15 13:10:00
Tags: reviews gay books politics links
The Episcopal Church voted to start putting together same-sex blessing ceremonies, which, you know, would have been awfully convenient. But still awesome!
In news that should surprise no one, scientists are way more likely to be Democratic than Republican, like 55%-6%.
The sequel to Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (my review here) has been announced: Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters!
I recently bought a few comic books (or "graphic novels"?) after rewatching V for Vendetta and liking it. Quick thoughts, in the order I read them:
Batman: Year One - shorter than I expected but still pretty entertaining.
V for Vendetta - I was disappointed. The book is really long, and while there are some differences between the book and the movie, I mostly (horrors!) prefer what the movie did. I also found it somewhat difficult to tell what the hell was going on.
Batman: The Killing Joke - The artwork is really nice and I enjoyed the story. Wish it was longer (it was only 50some pages)
Batman: The Dark Knight Returns - Only halfway done (it's long!) but I'm enjoying it.
Anyway, after absolutely loving Watchmen my interest in comic books has kinda subsided - they're fun but not something I'm hugely interested in.
Posted on 2008-11-03 09:43:00
Here are mine: feel free to post yours here!
- President: Obama wins Kerry states + IA NM CO VA NV OH for a total of 311-227 electoral votes. (here's a decent calculator to play with) This is a somewhat conservative estimate and I hope he breaks 330 EVs or so so it's not that close.
- Senate: Dems win new seats in VA NM CO AK NH OR NC for a total of 58. The GA race goes to a hotly-contested runoff.
- House: Um, I dunno, Dems gain 25 seats.
- California's Prop 8 fails but it's very very close.
Mostly just guessing on these with a slight pessimistic edge.
An interesting video about voting dirty tricks from the Obama campaign, although it's weak on actual advice.
A reminder: exit polls will be leaked tomorrow during the day. They will be partial numbers and very unreliable (they showed Kerry winning in 2004). I don't think I'm gonna be able to stop myself from looking at them (numbers!!) but they're pretty meaningless.
Posted on 2008-02-06 13:49:00
Tags: health work
My right eye has been doing this weird twitching for the past 5 days or so. It doesn't happen all the time, and it doesn't hurt, but sometimes it'll just start twitching like the eyelid is stuck open or caught on something. And the eye does feel a little dry. Anyone have any clue whether this is serious or not? It's a little irritating, but I can live with it if it's not the sign of some larger problem (eye falling out, for example - that would be bad).
Work meeting #1 today, big work meeting #2 tomorrow.
Posted on 2008-01-09 09:18:00
Tags: rant work mortgage house
Big work meeting today after lunch.
We met with our mortgage guy yesterday and everything seems to be in order, so bully for that. After work we're gonna view the house again and then, in all likelihood, make an offer, which is exciting! This just in: the house was not used previously to manufacture methamphetamines (yes, this question is on the seller's disclosure).
Also, $32 per month is a ridiculous sum of money to pay to a homeowner's association, for use of a pool that we'll probably never use.
if music be the food of love
Posted on 2007-09-10 09:59:00
Tags: worldofwarcraft cluesolver
I felt fairly blah on Saturday, feeling a real lack of drive and not wanting to do anything or start anything. I expected to be plunged more into blahness yesterday since djedi was leaving, but listening to music I don't get to at work while I read a good book (Three Fortunes in One Cookie - highly recommended!) helped a lot.
In the evening I had football on while I totally rethought my approach to the clue solver. The whole specifying everything in terms of logic just wasn't working at all, and I didn't want to give up on it, so I'm rewriting things to do my own inference, etc. It actually doesn't look that hard and I can take advantage of the fact that some things are much easier for me to understand (one and only one suspect did it) than to specify it in propositional logic, which is what I was down to.
Spent the remainder of the evening installing Galleon and getting rid of my way old program for listening to music on the TiVo. (which didn't shuffle playlists at all) It took me a while to get it working correctly for who-knows-what reason, but it works now.
Kara run was pretty successful - we downed all the stuff we had earlier, plus Curator (hard fight!) and the Chess Event. (which, as Sepp said, was "free loot!") Took a shot at Netherspite for fun and he (it?) kicked our collective asses, finishing at 100% thanks to crazy portals and beams and whatnot.
djedi's interviewing at NI today - wish him luck!
Posted on 2007-08-21 13:36:00
Tags: projects cluesolver
When I was growing up1, I didn't play Clue much. There was that game where we drew three random cards for the solution and ended up with two weapons or something like that. We never played with the rule that if you suggested someone they moved into your room, or that your suggestion had to include the room you were in (I think). And I remember at least one game where everyone showed you a card instead of just one person. My strategy was always to simply mark off cards I had seen, which was not terribly successful when I started playing with friends who played with the "real" rules.
I finally figured out (or refigured out? maybe I knew this before? my memory - unreliable...) a better strategy on this last visit to Austin, which is to use the information about if other people have certain cards or not. So for every suggestion that someone makes, when someone passes I write down on each of those three cards that that person doesn't have them, and when someone shows a card I write down that they have one of those three cards, and using that information you can learn a lot. The last game I played I didn't win, but I was pretty close to knowing what the solution was.
So, I thought it would be a fun project to write a Clue solver - that is, something on which you indicate the information you see (Mary made the following suggestion and it got passed around until John showed a card) and it deduces everything it can from that.
My current approach is to specify rules in first-order logic and use some sample code from my old AI book (AIMA) to figure things out. Unfortunately, the rules don't lead to definite clauses, so I think forward chaining is out. I've been trying to use resolution, but it doesn't work right and is slow. Maybe I'll try backward-chaining instead. If I have to I'll break down and write Clue-specific code to figure things out but it would be really awesome if I can get it working just by specifying the correct rules.
If you're following along at home in your copy of AIMA, I've been reading a lot of Chapter 9. :-)
I found this class project to do something similar (here's the project description (pdf)) which has a good explanation of resolution and the rule-based approach, although they seem to be using propositional logic and not first-order logic. Which might be what it takes to make it work in a reasonable amount of time.
1 - I fully expect wonderjess to correct me here since my memory is pretty horrible. (back)
Peppermint Mocha links
Posted on 2006-11-16 13:55:00
Tags: worldofwarcraft links
So what with all my efforts to get a Peppermint Mocha being thwarted, I thought fate was sending me a message. Well, I sent fate a message by going out of my way this morning to get one - so there! And it was gooood too. And helped keep me awake until now.
This should be an Onion headline, but it's real - apparently OJ Simpson wrote a book about "how he would have committed the murders if he were the one responsible. What??? Who thinks this is a good idea? Also, he's being interviewed on Fox about the new book - kudos to NBC for turning down an interview. Yikes.
The story of a Star Wars virgin who watched the films for the first time in order from I to VI. Kinda amusing.
I played Excite Truck on a Wii today for a few minutes. I'm excited! Also, I sure hope I wasn't banned from WoW for using Linux. (not Blizzard's intention, but it sure would be inconvenient...)
Posted on 2005-10-19 21:20:00
So I'm posting this in the middle of the game - Astros are up 4-1 in the bottom of the 6th. Just wanted to link to this good column on ESPN, although he's a little down on the Astros' chances.
Update (10:05 PM): It's Astros 5-1 going into the 9th inning. Could this be it? I'm so excited I can't sit still!
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