East of the Sun, West of the Moon

2005/12/1

Almost

Filed under: Humo(u)r — Erwin @ 9:19 pm

I can almost do this too, except mine would look like this:

  1. Go to Google
  2. Type Erwin Harte
  3. Press “I’m feeling lucky”

Using just my first or just my last name will fail horribly, I don’t think I’m even on the first few pages then. 🙂

Linkage (33)

Filed under: Linkage,Technology — Erwin @ 4:19 pm

Have some coffee (New Scientist):

Coffee improves short-term memory and speeds up reaction times by acting on the brain’s prefrontal cortex, according to a new study.


Regular phone-companies are stalling and the VoIP-companies are being threatened (Ars Technica) as a result:

VOIP providers could potentially be required to put new customers on hold until they can comply with FCC regulations. An FCC ultimatum gave VOIP providers 120 days to provide consumers with reliable emergency 911 services. <…> . Although the FCC will not force VOIP providers to terminate phone services currently provided to existing customers, the moratorium on new customers will certainly impede widespread VOIP adoption, and the inflexibility of the FCC could potentially inhibit developers of new voice communication technologies.

I seriously hope the FCC never even considered forcing VoIP providers to terminate phone services to existing customers, that would really piss of a few people, myself included of course. I know and knew what my provider (Vonage, let me know if you want a referral for a nice discount when signing up) does or does not offer in terms of 911 calls and I’m fine with that (as is M, last I checked). I’ll cheer loudly if it improves, but it’s not like they tried to hide this lacking support from me, unlike what some people would like you to believe.


Is it going to get cold in Europe (New Scientist)?

The ocean current that gives western Europe its relatively balmy climate is stuttering, raising fears that it might fail entirely and plunge the continent into a mini ice age.

The dramatic finding comes from a study of ocean circulation in the North Atlantic, which found a 30% reduction in the warm currents that carry water north from the Gulf Stream.

As a layman I would expect the climate to become more extreme. Warmer summers, colder winters, that sort of stuff, but time will tell I guess.


I seem to be on a roll with New Scientist today, here’s one more that I found interesting recently:

Some relatives of people with autism also display behaviours and brain differences associated with the condition, even though they themselves do not have it. This could make it easier to spot families at risk of having an autistic child. It could also help in the quest to identify the genetic and environmental triggers for the condition, though it seems these triggers might vary from country to country.

The reason I find it interesting is because I’m familiar with at least one, possibly two, persons in the PDD-NOS spectrum, which is autism-related, and it’s hard not to think you see certain behaviour in relatives, so it’s nice to see this somewhat confirmed.

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