Link Collection

August 31, 2008

LOTD August 31

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 12:50 am

Pretty cool that this study found that cows usually point north. That you to Ben for the link–I forgot to include this in the LOTD when it was in my local paper a couple of days ago:

It is sad that so many people in New Orleans feel they are too poor to evacuate:

National Guardsman asked a man for a beer in a parking lot before a Philadelphia Phillies baseball game. The man refused so the National Guardsman and a friend beat him up so badly that the man went into a coma. The National Guardsman was sentenced to being deployed to Iraq for a year…but he actually was going to be deployed ANYWAY and his deployment was actually delayed due to his trial! So, he in effect got no punishment even though he and his friend might have ruined the other man’s life:

The sales of HP’s mini-notebook are going very, very well and might be a good sign for that whole sector:

August 29, 2008

LOTD for August 29

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 11:14 am

The predictions I had seen had NOT listed Alaska’s governor as one of the top candidates for McCain, so this is a surprise to me! Palin could appeal to Hilary’s female supporters and has the strong conservative record that McCain lacks to appeal to the conservative Republican core. History will be made no matter who wins the election, we will have either the first African-American President or the first woman VP:

M/A-COM’s public safety radios for New York have NOT been performing well. After *3* rounds of testing have failed, the NY comptroller says that NY should cancel not proceed with the $2 bil contract with M/A-COM. M/A-COM would be out the $50 mil+ they have already spent on the program since NY doesn’t have to pay anything if they aren’t satisfied with the Phase 1 network:

Hackers have been attacking Iraq’s vulnerable computer system. Iraq’s entire cybercrime division has just one computer! How do they protect their government’s computer systems when they have just 1 laptop? This is a huge moneymaking area for terrorists already, but with Iraq increasingly sharing government information online they need to protect the information!

It is interesting how the Missile Defense Agency has to convince some people (American public, Congress) that the missile defense work is doing well, and has to convince others (especially Russia) that it doesn’t work that well:

The DoD turned to the experts in protecting people from head injury–the makers of NFL equipment:

Sony’s CEO hints that they might end the Sony Ericsson venture, that they might never make back the $3 bil they spent developing the PS3, that the Wii has a better business model, among other interesting tidbits:

Yahoo is shutting down its social networking site Yahoo Mash:

Qualcomm was found to have infringed on Broadcom patents again:

The iPhone is making some headway into the Enterprise, but RIM is still dominant:

2/3 of Abilene Christian’s incoming freshmen will get free 3G iPhones…I feel bad for the other 1/3!

Google takes on Apple’s App Store with the Android Marketplace:

This sheriff sentenced himself to a week in jail!

A slice of Princess Diana’s 27-year-old wedding cake just sold for $1,830!

August 28, 2008

LOTD for August 28

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 6:30 pm

As we reduce our troop count in Iraq, we are increasing our spending on private contractors there. We are expected to spend more than $1.2 bil on contractors this year!

One problem with the private contractors is that they seem to get into a lot more trouble than our troops, causing PR and other problems. Halliburton and one of their partners were just sued for engaging in human trafficking!

Another private contractor used is MVM, which just lost a $1 bil CIA contract because they didn’t have enough armed guards:

These writers propose an interesting way to punish Russia for the Georgia invasion and the other threats they have been making lately. They say that US and EU regulators should go after the business dealings of the Russian tycoons that have bankrolled Putin–that use of “soft power” will cause Russia’s ruling elites to demand changes from their government:

Looks like Georgia has no Navy left–Russia destroyed the rest of their ships at the pier and took back with them whatever they could:

Sad (but not surprising, this type of thing has gone on for centuries) to read about the looting that Russian soldiers did in Georgia. Taking the inventory of a storage area that contained used underwear and old socks seems kind of over-the-top to me, though:

Military housing in Kentucky will use solar and geothermal energy to create “zero-energy” homes:

Pretty amazing to me that Toyota could soon be shipping its cars from Japan to the US on a solar-powered ship!

The laptops on the International Space Station have been infected with a virus:

The IEEE completed 802.11r, the standard for roaming between 802.11 APs:

Article about what we can learn from France, probably the top place for open source development in the world:

Article about the rise of community Linux outside of North America, where community versions of Linux are replacing the popular commercial distributions:

Taiwan arrested a a hacker group that stole private information about 50 million people…including their police chief and current and former Presidents!

The FBI arrested the blogger who nine unreleased tracks from the new Guns n’ Roses album–he is charged with 9 counts of Copyright violations that could give him 3-6 years in prison for each count:

The Sydney orchestra mimed their entire opening ceremony performance at the 2000 Olympic Games!
Article link

Bloomberg accidentally posted an obituary of Steve Jobs!

CBS made over CNET this week, giving the first look at the property they paid $1.8 bil for:

Nearly 1,000-pound woman is charged with beating her nephew to death, but her defense is that her limited movement would prevent her from doing what she is accused of:

August 27, 2008

LOTD for August 27

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 9:14 pm

Lockheed’s Navy patrol plane bid was $5.2 BILLION *less* than Northrop’s bid…but Lockheed LOST anyway due to past problems with Lockheed’s subcontractor, General Atomics. Wow, when your competitor bids $5.2 billion more than you and still wins, it shows that your customer was not happy with your performance!

After the long appeal process to get the previous tanker decision overturned, Boeing says that it won’t even bid in the new competition unless it gets more time to make its bid:

The UN found that a US airstrike killed 90 civilians in Afghanistan…60 children and 19 women were among those killed. This is NOT the way for the US to get the Afghanistan people to choose NATO over the Taliban:
Article link

Looks like the Taliban are winning in the battle over their former capital city. How could the Afghanistan government have just 10 guards to protect a prison with 1,400 inmates, including 350 Taliban prisoners who were freed?

It looks like a MAJOR factor in the reduction in violence in Iraq was that our military convinced the Sunni group Sons of Iraq to help the US fight Al Qaeda. We and the Iraqi government promised the Sons of Iraq that they would be hired into the Iraqi security forces when Al Qaeda was defeated. Now, it appears that the Iraqi government has decided to basically wage war against that Sunni group, breaking the promises made and creating 100,000 unhappy, armed Sons of Iraq. This could be a mess!,0,4646204.story

It is pretty cool that Wii Sports and Guitar Hero are giving big boosts to the rehab of injured vets. Doctors at Walter Reed Hospital have found that the Wii distracts patients from their fears and their body’s resistance to movement by getting the patient to focus on the game:

Looks like Northrop is having big problems with the ships coming from their Gulf Coast shipyards…and consequently our Marines do not have their new amphibious transport ship:

Iran hyped it new submarine. If their claims are true (Iran’s government has exaggerated their military’s capabilities before), then this would give Iran the power over the world’s energy markets:

Scientists transformed one type of cell into another in living mice, a big step towards the goal of growing replacement tissues to treat a variety of diseases:

The Bay Area’s FasTrak system apparently can be hacked–not only could this mean lost revenue, but it could provide criminals with false alibis:

The Internet’s biggest security hole (at least so far) has been revealed:

Earthquake zone off of the Oregon coast is more active than the San Andreas fault!

Medical identity theft is increasing:

A PhD student in Australia won the contest that asked for people to come up with ways to protect the Earth from a collision with an asteroid:

Verizon and LG were sued over their visual voicemail offering. With this inventor already suing and getting settlements and licensing agreements from AT&T, Apple, and Vonage, I think it is clear that Verizon and LG are going to be paying this guy soon:

Looks like the iPhones are NOT very secure about the way they store private information. iPhone information that is supposed to be protected by a password can be accessed with a couple of button presses! Apple was surprised to hear about this bug. The suggestion to avoid storing stuff in favorite entries probably will not be a popular one:

Another article link

Apple was censured for their false advertising in UK iPhone Ads:

SiRF filed a patent lawsuit against GPS competitor Global Locate. Broadcom bought Global Locate and countersued SiRF. Broadcom must have some excellent lawyers (see: Qualcomm victories), as not only did they beat back SiRF’s lawsuit but they seem to have succeeded in getting a ban on the import of devices with SiRF’s GPS chips! That is a huge victory for Broadcom and is a BIG problem for a lot of consumer products that planned to have GPS-enabled devices:

OJ’s daughter apparently beat him up and then called the police because she felt bad about it:

August 26, 2008

LOTD for August 26

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:17 pm

Plot to kill Obama during his acceptance speech was foiled–they had high-powered rifles and everything else with them and instead of denying it one of the suspects said that “blacks don’t belong in political office”:

Swiss engineers smuggled nuclear technology to Iran and Libya? I wonder how widely this information has spread…and how much more dangerous the world is because of it:

Carnegie Mellon researchers created low-cost system to prevent eavesdroppers, preventing the “man-in-the-middle” attack:

Researchers appear to have broken through the limits set by “Overton’s Rule”, a 100+ year-old rule of pharmacology. This could be a big breakthrough that affects the development and testing of new drugs:
Article link

The demand for nuclear engineers is increasing significantly, with the increase in nuclear power plants and the expected 20,000 veteran nuclear engineers expected to retire by 2012:

Wind farms are apparently a big problem for bats, not as big of a problem for birds. The problem isn’t that the bats are running into the rotating turbines, the problem is that the low air pressure zones put so much pressure on the lungs of bats that it can kill them:

It is sad that half of the food made worldwide is wasted, and the water used to grow that wasted food is a major contributor to global water shortages:

The California drought has resulted in some counties suing the state for better water rights:

WiMAX is doing well in India and projections have WiMAX getting 20% market share by 2012!

AT&T added international data plans for iPhone users who travel to 67 other countries. The cheapest plan is $120 per month in addition to whatever they currently pay for their iPhone usage:

Survey of 3G iPhone users found that the data speed problems have more to do with cellular network overload than problems with the phone itself:

Nielsen estimates that 2.9 million Americans got the text message over the weekend announcing Obama’s VP choice:

Jessica Simpson will apparently be the decorator for Tony Romo’s new home. I’m actually not including this due to Simpson or Romo–I’m including this because I’m amazed at how cheap real estate is in Dallas! Romo bought a home in an exclusive gated community that has a golf course, the home is 5,551 square feet with 5 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms, 2 half-bathrooms, a game room, pool, and spa…for under $700k! His house cost less than my house! That is crazy!

This Florida woman was arrested after her TENTH DUI arrest. TEN DUIs!

August 25, 2008

LOTD for August 25

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 5:05 pm

Russia is full-scale *inflatable* versions of its tanks and weapons systems:

Solar-powered UAV flew for 3.5 straight days in a recent test:

Professor in Japan claims that North Korea’s Kim Jong Il died in 2003 and has been replaced by a lookalike:

Qualcomm achieved a 20+ Mbps data rate in a 5 MHz channel via HSPA+. This would double the data rate and triple the voice capacity of current HSPA networks:

Clearwire shareholders are getting $1.62 bil in stock in the new Clearwire:

Obama’s campaign wasn’t able to get the text messages about the VP choice out to their supporters as quickly as they had planned:;_ylt=Ah9dzPYC4P1XWh1FVWd5oxwjtBAF

This TSA inspector caused a TON of delays because of the way he pulled himself up to 7 American Airlines planes:

Analysts say that Amazon’s Kindle is selling better than expected and compare it to the iPod. Great news for Amazon and great news for the electronic book industry! $1 bil in sales for Kindle products in 2010…that is pretty impressive growth!

Here are the College rankings from US News & World Report:

Halloween generate $5 bil per year in sales! Hard to imagine that people were found to actually shop for Halloween stuff in July and when one store didn’t have their Halloween stuff out yet they went to buy their stuff from another Halloween store…are people in that much of a hurry to buy Halloween stuff?

This site summarizes all of the rumors about the changes for the 2009 Prius. It would be really, really sad if the major Prius changes were delayed for a year or more because we were hoping to get the next-gen Prius! I really liked the report about the 2009 Prius having solar panels in its roof…too bad that the next-gen Prius might be delayed:

This report seems to indicate that the next-gen Prius was getting a lot of its fuel-economy boost from its Lithium batery…but it seems like the Litium batteries are delayed so the next-gen Prius is delayed. Toyota already announced a 60% increase in Prius production for 2009, which seems to indicate that they will have somethings different in the 2009 Prius to get sales to be that much higher than 2008:

Interesting that Honda’s new hybrid for 2009 will be a 5-door passenger sedan (Prius size) and priced just $1900 more than regular gas-powered cars:

Interesting article about Honda’s hybrid plans:

August 23, 2008

LOTD for August 23

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:21 pm

Desalination plant gets key OK for site near San Diego (thank you Ben for the link!). This will be the largest desalination plant in the Western Hemisphere and will provide 10% of the water that San Diego needs:

I think that it is silly how Obama and McCain are arguing over who is the wealthier candidate and they are both trying to say that the other is out of touch with “regular” Americans. I do agree with this article that Americans don’t seem to mind rich politicians but they DO mind if the politicians seem out of touch. And McCain saying that it takes $5 mil per year for someone to be considered rich really blows my mind! The funny thing is that by his standard the Obamas are “middle-class” ($4.2 mil last year) and the McCains are “rich” ($6.4 mil last year, over $100 mil net worth). To me, this was a bigger misstep for McCain than not knowing how many houses he owns:

Some Wal-Mart employees are complaining how Wal-Mart is making a big nationwide push for their managers and supervisors to vote Republican, with the discussions being held during mandatory meetings. Telling employees who to vote for would be illegal…so instead, they are telling their employees *not* to vote for Obama because that would be bad for their company. Wal-Mart is the biggest private employer in the US, so this is a major nationwide factor in the upcoming elections:

The bill to ban driving with a pet in a driver’s lap advanced in the California Legislature:

Analyst says that the computer mouse will be obsolete in 3-5 years:

Interesting that money actually *reduces* the motivation for people to do things! This study showed that college students (who normally would be extra-motivated for money!) actually were less motivated to solve puzzles when they were given cash rewards for each puzzle solved, and the students who were NOT given money actually solved more puzzles!

Interesting how the Malaysian tree shrew basically lives on an alcoholic nectar (the equivalent of 9 beers per day for a human!) and never gets drunk. It is also funny how the different articles I’ve read customize the alcohol analogy based on their audience–NPR mentions this is the equivalent of 9 glasses of wine per day, other sites mentions it is the equivalent of 9 beers per day:

Interesting that Indonesian orangutans actually make and apply natural ointments to soothe pain. Self-medication is a pretty advanced behavior!
Article link

Eating tofu and other soy-based foods can cut a man’s sperm count in half! Eating just a single serving of tofu or just a cup of miso soup is enough to cut the sperm count in half!

Pretty cool that this inventor has actually made a jet pack that lifted his teenage son about 3 feet off the ground and kept him in the air for 45 seconds, far longer than other jet packs. His jet pack is supposed to be able to have people fly much higher off the ground for 30 miles at 60 mph. He plans to sell them for $100k each and if it actually works and if it gets in some popular movie (like a James Bond movie), then I think it will sell quite well to the wealthy:

August 22, 2008

LOTD for August 22

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 4:10 pm

Reminder to anyone who plans to attend MILCOM that they need to register by 8/28 to get the cheaper price. I’m happy to say that I will be presenting a paper at the conference:

I cannot believe that the Mexican peppers that pose salmonella risk are STILL being sold in the US! They just dropped the price so that it was cheaper than the no-salmonella peppers, so small grocery stores and restaurants are buying the cheap peppers. Some test for salmonella after buying the peppers, others do not:

Amazing that the highest kidnapping rate in the world is in Mexico, not Iraq or Columbia. Rich and middle-class Mexicans are kidnapped for ransom money, but some (even minors) are killed by the kidnappers. Mexicans are now getting tiny radio transmitters implanted under their skin so that they can be rescued quickly if they are kidnapped:

The US paid the Sunni “Awakening” groups to help with security in Sunni-dominated areas in Iraq, as the Awakening groups are credited for reduced casualties for US troops. However, the Shiite-dominated Iraqi government is apparently rounding up and arresting the Awakening groups now, against the wishes of our military. The Sunnis are feeling betrayed since we used them to fight against Al Qaeda and now they are being thrown into jail because the Shiites are worried about the training and organization they had in the fight against Al Qaeda. Some are actually being arrested by the Iraqi government while they are on the payroll of the US!

Our Coast Guard is not doing that well in the race to claim the Arctic. I hope that the new President provides the funds and resources needed to claim what the US deserves!

The Marine Corps is issuing new body armor that is smaller and lighter:

Recently declassified documents show that the PR push for the Iraq invasion came before the US even did their intelligence analysis of Iraq:

Researchers found out that New York has a much greater risk of earthquakes than previously assumed. Scarily, two (previously unknown) active fault lines were discovered to intersect right under a new nuclear power plant near New York!

NSF gave the Air Force Academy $285k to study wave energy:

They are paying actors in Poland to stand in line outside of stores to hype interest in the 3G iPhone:

University of Washington researchers have developed software that allows deaf people to use sign language with cell phones!

I think that it is great that the tiny nation of Niue gave laptops to ALL of its children yesterday! They got a donation of 500 laptops and their nation only has 1,500 people!;_ylt=AufTtE2QyeY9HUDIATvG7c4jtBAF

Alaska Airlines is using satellites instead of Aircell for their in-flight WiFi service:

Verizon and Google are close to signing a mobile search deal:

Amazing that the glaziers during midievel times used nanotechnology (well before that name existed!) for their stained glass windows. Also amazing that those stained glass windows served as air purifiers!
Article link

Man used a Barbie fishing rod to catch a 21 pound catfish! The fish was 2 inches longer than the fishing rod and he only used a 6-pound test line!

It is hard for me to believe that McCain did not know how many houses he owns! However, Obama is quite wealthy himself so I don’t think this issue will stick around too long:

Oil speculators really have a huge power over the prices we pay…and so much of oil now is being controlled by speculators!,0,3654822.story?track=rss

For Lori–Jessica Simpson sure went off on Carrie Underwood!

August 21, 2008

LOTD for August 21

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:05 pm

Texas A&M researchers claim that they have found a way to cheaply convert everyday waste directly into 95-octane gasoline. If they are correct that they can do this conversion of billions of gallons of gas for under $2 per gallon, this could be a HUGE benefit to our economy and environment. Instead of having our landfills get more and more filled, they could be turned into profit-generating gasoline!
Article link

Google is now the largest funder of the enhanced geothermal research in our country, more than even our government. Geothermal energy (tapping the Earth’s heat to generate electricity) emits no air pollution and can generate 2000 times the total electricity that our country uses!

Intel announced that it was increased the efficiency of wireless recharging of devices, with efficiency up to 75% now. They are first going to design a system that can automatically recharge a laptop without wires:
NY Times article

Apple was hit with a class action lawsuit due to their 3G iPhone connection problems:

Pretty amazing to me that a lot of Universities are now giving FREE iPhones and iPod Touch devices to their students!

The US and Poland signed a deal to put a missile defense system 115 miles from Russia’s border;

Analysis about how the missile defense systems proposed for Poland and the Czech Republic will mainly serve to irritate Russia. The analysis points out that the missile defense systems won’t actually protect against a missile attack by any country other than Russia, and that Russia can easily get around the missile defense systems:

More on the difficult situation in Afghanistan. It is very interesting that a former US-trained Afghan Warlord is now working with the Taliban against to NATO forces…no wonder their tactics have been more complex lately:

This guy is really upset that Dell tried to trademark the term “cloud computing”:

Three new Blackberries are hitting the market:

American Airlines launched in-flight WiFi service for flights from NY to LA, SF, and Miami:;_ylt=AvQmRlaq1z53oWGmYgHVGoIjtBAF

Microsoft is apparently paying Seinfeld $10 mil per year to get him to try to make them “cool”:

These newlyweds were tasered by police at their wedding reception AND 2 nights later during another disturbance. They spent their first night as a married couple with strangers in different holding cells 50 feet apart from each other:,CST-NWS-wed18.article

This woman sat on her boyfriend’s toilet for TWO YEARS! Her skin actually grew around the seat! Her boyfriend finally called the police, but authorities are wondering why he waited for 2 years:

August 20, 2008

LOTD for August 20

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 8:30 pm

DoE scientists set a solar cell efficiency world record by converting 40.8% of light hitting the device into electricity:

Article link

Oklahoma inventor says that by using our existing offshore oil and gas platforms we could cheaply harness wave power for electricity and hydrogen. Many of those platforms are being retired since the gas/oil there is depleted, so they could be hydrogen generators and use the already-existing pipelines connected to them to transport the energy:

The military is apparently 2-3 years away from making an invisibility cloak (via metamaterials) that will also deflect radar signals:

Interesting 400-page declassified document about Bin Laden. Very interesting tidbit that the Clinton Administration thought that its 1998 missile strikes would convince the Taliban to give up Bin Laden but instead it drove the Taliban and Bin Laden closer together:

Interesting to read about how Russia’s planes were shot down by Georgia due to mistakes Russia made:
Article link

WALL-E Look-a-Like won the British robot Grand Challenge:

Apple released a fix for the 3G iPhone that is supposed to help with its dropped call problem:;_ylt=AoauKd6392WHPZGI5jKKNV4jtBAF

Cox Communications (the cable company) is looking to use the 700 MHz spectrum it won in the recent auction to offer a wireless service that integrates all of its offerings into one device. Cox spent $304 mil for 22 licenses in the 700 MHz spectrum, so they clearly had a plan for that spectrum:,2817,2328383,00.asp

HSBC denied that it was considering switching from their Blackberries to the iPhone:

Online newspaper reading declined *significantly* over the past year:

Study of Americans shows that the decline of readership for newspapers and viewers of TV news broadcasts is expected to get much, much worse:

Lori found this cute Lego version of the Olympics!

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