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Life, Y'Know? Science Society

Blade Runner: San Francisco

Terry Tsai: SF drone footage during the #BayAreaFires on 9/9/20, set to Blade Runner 2049 music.

Now we’re getting Red Sky Crossovers in real life, too? Perfect.

Categories
Science

Gourmet Pop Rocks

This is some top-notch “I do not want to do this content but I will do this content because it is my job” content.

Also I learned more about Pop Rocks than I ever thought possible, so that’s a pretty solid bonus.

Categories
Science

BBC News: Physicist Stephen Hawking dies aged 76

Stephen Hawking died yesterday:

The British theoretical physicist was known for his groundbreaking work with black holes and relativity, and was the author of several popular science books including A Brief History of Time.

I’m a huge fan of Stephen Hawking and genuinely love “A Brief History of Time”, so this news really bums me out.

Categories
News Politics Science Technology

WIRED: Google’s Clever Plan to Stop Aspiring ISIS Recruits

Jigsaw, Google’s think-tank, has used Google’s search advertising algorithms to help dissuade people searching for information on joining ISIS to, y’know, not join.

The program, which Jigsaw calls the Redirect Method and plans to launch in a new phase this month, places advertising alongside results for any keywords and phrases that Jigsaw has determined people attracted to ISIS commonly search for. Those ads link to Arabic- and English-language YouTube channels that pull together preexisting videos Jigsaw believes can effectively undo ISIS’s brainwashing—clips like testimonials from former extremists, imams denouncing ISIS’s corruption of Islam, and surreptitiously filmed clips inside the group’s dysfunctional caliphate in Northern Syria and Iraq.

That’s brilliant and an actual display of courage. Google deserves all the high-fives.

Source: Wired.com

Categories
Politics Science Technology

Should All Locks Have Keys

Given the hullaballoo over the idiotically-dangerous “Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016” that was released in draft form today, I thought it might be wise to remind people why strong encryption is a good and necessary thing. Fortunately, this video does all the legwork for me, which is really rather considerate of it.

Categories
Entertainment Science

Quantum Chess: Paul Rudd vs. Stephen Hawking

Caltech’s Institute for Quantum Information and Matter, which apparently is a thing that exists, released a video where Paul Rudd plays Dr. Stephen Hawking in a game of Quantum Chess, which is also apparently a thing that exists.

It’s directed by Alex Winter, who played Bill in “Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure and/or Bogus Journey”, and features narration by Keanu Reeves, who played Ted in “The Matrix”. It’s 11 minutes long and worth every second of your time, I promise.

h/t: Gizmodo

Categories
Politics Science Society Technology

FOX News: The Voice of Reason

FOX News’ Shepard Smith on Ebola. It’s reasonable, non-sensationalist, clear and coherent.

No, I don’t know when we fell into a portal that landed us on the Bizarro world, either.

Categories
News Science Technology

Hyperloop

Elon Musk, the dude behind Tesla Motors, SpaceX, and was a founding member of PayPal, announced his intentions for the Hyperloop transportation system yesterday.

The solar-powered system, which Musk previously described as a cross between a Concorde, rail gun and air-hockey table, would shoot as many as 28 passengers in each enclosed capsule through a low-pressure steel tube at up to 800 miles per hour, according to the 57-page design plan.

The plans are also open-source, meaning anyone can build upon and improve them. I suppose it’s too much to hope for that this could be the start of a cross-country high-speed rail system for the U.S., what with the lobbying dollars that the airline industry likely has, but it’s nice to dream.

Categories
Linkin' Log News Science

Cicadas On Parade!

The Huffington Post reports that we’re going to see some crazy on the East Coast this summer:

If you live on the East Coast between Georgia and Connecticut, get ready for the air to be filled with billions of large, buzzing insects known as cicadas, a massive brood of which have been feeding on roots underground for the past 17 years — all in preparation for this one moment… The red-eyed insects, also known as Magicicada, tend to form denser clouds than other varieties of cicada. These swarms can be as dense as 1.5 million cicadas per acre.

Back when I was a kid, I used to take the shells that cicadas grew out of that they left behind on trees and glue giant googly-eyes on them. It was fun. (In other words, it’s time to invest in the companies that make giant googly-eyes, because I am going to be increasing their profit margins single-handedly this summer.)

Categories
Science

SCIENCE! In SPACE!

Two thoughts:

  1. Science is awesome.
  2. The 133 people who have thumbs-downed this video on YouTube should be arrested for murdering their inner child. Monsters.

via NPR via Aduronia