15 March 2007

Cool stuff of the last day or so

Rather than inundating my family with stuff I find interesting, I'll just stick it up here.

First up, an interesting post tying eye motion over an image to the task/inclination/psychology of the observer:

[Cognitive Daily] Artists Look Different

David Brin used this in his novel Sun Diver when the crew was trying to identify which one of them was a criminal.

Next, an interesting post on the Cuban educational system:

Vamos A Cuba

Although I know he's the sort of guy who tortures prisoners and executes his enemies - not that we would ever torture prisoners or execute enemies of the state - I have a certain admiration for Castro, because he is also a patriot, and I'll assert the average Cuban has a better life in many ways under him than they did under puppet dictators like Batista. He and Cuba have prevailed in spite of the US embargo, and in spite of the USSR (and its aid) disappearing. It will be, um, interesting when he dies and idiot wanna-bes return to try to take over.

Anyway, enough politics: back to science. Robert Ballard is truly doing some interesting things these days:

[Deepsea News] Webcasting Exploration

Maybe it's just because I'm such a science geek, but this is seriously cool. Finally, a compelling reason for HDTV beyond sports and porn.

Finally, my former employer got the tap on the shoulder to work on the HD Photo format for Microsoft; kudos for that. Of course, their top competitor is kicking their butt with a new product release at AIIM. That's what comes of having your act together in product development, one would conclude. My prediction is that Atalasoft will wind up buying Pegasus one day, but only for the technology. Maybe.

12 March 2007

Clever, he is

You have to love the singlemindedness of 10-year-old boys... voicemail from my son.

I also have to add a plug for the excellent - and free! - WavePad and Switch tools from NCH Swift Sound. I used them to edit and convert the cellphone audio I recorded on the Mac (long story involving a cheap but capable Dell Inspiron 1501 notebook without a built-in microphone).

Sadly, the excellent Syntrillium CoolEdit Pro is no longer around, having been folded into Adobe Audition.

09 March 2007


I saw Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the author of Infidel, on Bill Maher's show some time back, and I was struck by her quiet strength and intelligence. I was looking for something on amazon today and came across her book, and the section on the page with the Washington Post review is well worth reading, even if you never read the book.

While I'm tilting more toward Sam Harris these days with respect to religion - a lot more, in fact, since I've been in Lynchburg - I've always been offended to see Muslim families in the west where the males dress in Western clothes and the females dress in burqas, because this is a clear example of a religion making women inferior.

So, while all religion sucks - except for pastafarianism, of course - Islam, even the "progressive" versions, sucks worse.