Link Collection

May 31, 2009

LOTD for May 31

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:55 pm

Susan Boyle suffered an emotional breakdown after not winning Britain’s Got Talent and paramedics came to her hotel room and took her to a hospital:

Texas won a record-setting 25 inning game yesterday. It is good that they were the only undefeated team left in the regional so they can play less games and rest a little…even if they lose tonight’s game against Army (which will probably happen–Army should beat a tired Boston College team in the afternoon and beat a tired Texas team tonight), they still can win tomorrow’s game to advance:

That Buffalo flight that crashed (see yesterday’s LOTD) had a sleep-deprived pilot who lied about his flight record (and the airlines didn’t check his record–they could have easily found out about his flunked certification tests) and a co-pilot who was sleep-deprived and earned just $16,000 per year. How qualified are their co-pilots when truck drivers can make 3x that salary?

The recession has resulted in a lot of US high school students choosing to go to Canadian Universities because they are a lot cheaper:

Three senior Spanish Army officers (including a General) were sentence to prison for knowingly misidentifying bodies of peacekeepers returning from Afghanistan. Three three officers falsified official documents and randomly assigned the identities of 30 bodies!

“Take our daughters and sons to work day” went horribly bad at these Florida prisons when more than 40 children (as young as 5 years old!) were shocked with stun guns! Three employees were fired and two others resigned:

This Dallas woman’s 11-month-old twins got a DNA test and they found that twins had different fathers! This is a rare case of heteropaternal superfecundation. She admitted having an affair and her fiance says that he’ll stay with her and raise both twins as his sons:

Dry Fly Distilling (in Spokane) gets volunteers on Saturdays who work 3-hour shifts bottling and packing their products for shipping. The volunteers are not paid, but they get a free lunch and 3 or 4 small shots of gin or vodka. They don’t advertise this at all but they get a LOT of volunteers to show up for some reason…they now have to use a sign-up list, and they filled their volunteer needs for this year already:

Boston man was pulled over for driving to endanger because he was all over the road…because he was eating a bowl of cereal while driving:

Belgian bodybuilding championship was canceled when ALL 20 bodybuilders ran away when officials unexpectedly showed up to do steroids testing:


May 30, 2009

LOTD for May 30

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 3:03 pm

For Lori–the Octo Mom signed a deal to star in a reality TV show:

Susan Boyle came in second in the finale of Britain’s Got Talent tonight:

For the first time in the company’s history, spending on Visa debit cards has exceeded spending on Visa credit cards. Debit transactions were 70% of Visa’s transactions during the period. Consumers are increasingly preferring debit cards at places where cash and checks were the preferred way to pay:

Emily was the most popular baby girl name in the US for 12 years, but Emma ended the streak in 2008. Jacob was the most popular baby boy name in the US last year, the 10th straight year. Barack and Miley moved up the charts, with Barack jumping a record 10,126 spots:

I think that it is great that starting July 4 people will get to walk up their stairs to get to the crown of the Statue of Liberty:

It is shameful that the Members of Parliment in the UK have been abusing the system and getting repayments (and overcharging for things) for regular expenses. Because renovating their home is paid for by the taxpayers, some shameless elected officials have run a property racket–buying homes, spending taxpayer money to renovate them, and then selling the homes for big profits:

Pilot of the Continental plane that crashed into a Buffalo home (everyone on the plane died, 50 total dead) flirted with his co-pilot as the plane was landing and he was never properly trained on the plane’s anti-stall stick-pusher…so, he yanked the stick back instead of pulling it forward to save the plane. He also had failed *five* flight exams before the fatal crash!

Both the pilot and co-pilot were not monitoring the flight instruments before the crash and the head of pilot training for the company the pilot worked for said that they could have recovered from the stall if they had operated properly:

May 29, 2009

LOTD for May 29

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 4:38 pm

New lethal virus (this one comes from rodent viruses) has been identified in Africa–the virus has already killed 4 people. It apparently causes bleeding like the Ebola virus:

Study found that a 10% reduction in auto emissions would have a substantial impact on the health of Americans:

Pres. Obama made cybersecurity a top priority, elevating cybersecurity concerns to a top management priority for the U.S. government:

Homeland Security will scan the fingerprints of people leaving the US, starting with the airports in Atlanta and Detroit. They also are asking travelers to carry RF-enabled ID cards when crossing the US/Canada border:,homeland-security-to-scan-fingerprints-of-travellers-exiting-the-us.aspx

Homeland Security is asking science fiction writers to offer imaginative services in return for travel expenses only:

A prestigious University in Tokyo gave *free iPhones* to its students, and used its GPS to catch students who cut classes. Truants typically get others to sign in for them, but they don’t want to give their phones away since it has so much personal information (plus, nobody will be able to reach them then):

Article about how Qualcomm has created a new device category called “smartbook” that uses their Snapdragon chipset and is a cross between a netbook and a smartphone:
Article link

Article about how the Android platform could end up in all types of consumer devices…including TVs, washing machines, and digital picture frames:

Interesting that the Palm Pre is the first non-Apple device that can sync with iTunes and iPhoto and make them seem to think the Pre is an iPod. Palm dodged the questions about how Apple would feel about that…but I’m guessing some lawyers will be quite busy for Apple and Palm! Calling Apple “practically a monopolist” while showing that your device can trick Apple-run sites to think it is an iPod is really inviting a lawsuit…

Report says that wireless connectivity will be the main focus for car manufacturers by 2012. The report says that consumers will consider in-vehicle connectivity as important as safety and fuel efficiency by 2016…I can’t see data access in a car to be as important as safety and fuel efficiency, but maybe I’m just an old fogey:
Press release

Sprint will offer a tri-mode phone that has CDMA, WiFi, and WiMAX:

May 28, 2009

LOTD May 28

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 6:19 pm

The Air Force is wary of having the next-generation bomber be pilotless:

Hardin, Montana built a $27 million prison facility two years ago to revitalize their economy…but it has remained empty ever since it was built (no crime surge in Montna to fill their prison). So, they are asking to house the Gitmo prisoners…with Montana’s senators objecting:

Analysis about the broad R&D agreement that the US and Japan finalized with apan over nuclear-based energy R&D:
Article link

Lax IT access control makes the TSA’s financial information vulnerable. They don’t even check privileges to make sure that people have the right level of access and they don’t check if people who quit or are fired are locked out of the system!

The US is not prepared for a strong solar storm, with a storm like the Carrington Event possibly taking out power to a large part of the US for months. That would cause a big shortage of water, food, fuel, communications, and so on:,2933,522260,00.html

Japanese scientists succeeded in engineering the birth of a transgenic marmoset baby–the monkey inherited his parents DNA and also a jellyfish gene that made his parents and him glow green under fluorescent light. This was the first time that parents were able to pass a genetically engineered trait to their offspring, and scientists hope to use this breakthrough approach to create animal models of neurological diseases:

Commentary criticizing how states (so far Hawaii, Oregon and Delaware) have been taking millions of dollars that were collected as 911 fees and transferring it to their general fund to balance their budgets:

Apple’s back-to-school sale gives FREE iTouches to students and teachers who buy a Mac, in addition to Apple’s education discount:

Report found that the iPhone is still driving customers to AT&T:;title

This consumer survey shows just that the iPhone has been a huge benefit to AT&T, but Verizon (helped by having the highest customer satisfaction rating and lowest dropped calls, far better than AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile) has been strong also:

Palm’s stock shot upwards with the news that Verizon will have the Palm Pre in the next 6 months or so. The article also mentions that Verizon will have the BlackBerry Storm 2 and some Android-based phones within the next 6 months. I thought that Sprint had the Pre as an exclusive until the end of the year?

Google said that there will be at least 18 Android phones on the market by the end of this year:

Hearse driver stopped for a beer and failed to deliver a body to the cemetery while the family waited, wondering why the body wasn’t delivered to the funeral:

The pressure sure seems to be getting to Susan Boyle. Considering how her life has changed ever since her first appearance on Britain’s Got Talent, this is not too surprising:
Article link

May 27, 2009

LOTD for May 27

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 5:09 pm

New York’s new broadband network could be model for first responders. I heard a talk from a Northrop executive at the Next-Generation Radio Communications Conference two years ago and was impressed, and I’m glad that Northrop’s network is doing a good job for New York:

Pres. Obama highlighted the huge solar array (72,000 solar panels, 30 million kW/h per year!) at Nellis Air Force Base. The DoD has a lot of other alternative energy projects planned, including a 500-megawatt solar array at Fort Irwin:

DARPA’s Transformer vehicle program is looking to develop a “proper flying car”, which can fly for up to 2 hours on a take of fuel and be operated by a typical soldier who doesn’t have pilot training:

A humanoid robot with a realistic head and a figure of a young Japanese female has been developed that moves like a human and responds to speech. The robot will be used by Japan’s entertainment industry (for example, it models clothes during fashion shows) and as a human simulator for evaluation of devices:

Wings that waggle could cut airline fuel bills and emissions by 20% by dramatically reducing in-flight drag, using the Helmholtz resonance principle:

Article about how Sotomayor’s nomination united Hispanics yesterday:

The Australian government planned to make a law requiring the use of their firewall for all Internet users in their country…however, protests might have changed those plans because the blacklist was leaked and people found out that the firewall was going to block poker sites, Wikipedia pages, religious sites, and even business sites:

The good news for Sprint is that the Kindle provided the majority of their new subscribers…the bad news is that they get only $2 per month in revenue from Kindle subscribers while they get $56 per month for their average postpaid subscriber:

Nebraska man wore a Bud Light box as a mask when he stole 9 packs of cigarettes:

For Lori–Did AT&T break American Idol’s rules to help Kris Allen win? Providing free phones with free text messaging to gatherings of Kris Allen fans in Arkansas and showing them how to send *10* text messages by pressing just one button breaks several American Idol rules…and they apparently did not provide this help to Adam Lambert fans:

May 26, 2009

LOTD for May 26

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 9:06 pm

Sonia Sotomayor was nominated for the Supreme Court. She was long-rumored to be one of the top choices, and the confirmation battle could be interesting…she was definitely not a candidate to pick if Pres. Obama wanted to avoid a confirmation fight:

I’ve gone through these “puff” machines in airports before–they blow puffs of air that is supposed to shake loose traces of explosive particles that are on someone’s body. They were deployed at 37 airports at their peak, but after $30 million or so and 5 years in service, they are being phased out now:

Secret Service spokesperson disputes the memo from the Secret Service that asked for $33 million or faced the threat of a “near-term mission failure.” The Secret Service document says that they need the money to make its communications systems compatible with the White House’s communications system. It would be quite odd for the Secret Service to be currently unable to communicate with the White House, and it is even odder that the Secret Service is denying its own memo:

Research Center has been established at Georgia Tech for study of methods to improve the recovery of soldiers with serious injuries:

MicroPlanet’s Smart Grid technology has been successfully deployed in the Marine Corps Base in Kaneohe. They found the payback time was less than 2 years, so they are looking to do the entire Kaneohe base and also to use this at bases in Guam next:
Article link

Zero Pollution Motors is looking to bring a car to US roads in less than 2 years that is powered by a combination of compressed air and a small conventional engine. The car would cost less than $20k, gets 100 mpg, and emit only air when you drive less than 35mph. A French startup already has demonstrated a car with this technology:
Article link

Analysis of the future of wind power in the US:
Article link

New Memory material may hold data for one billion years:
Article link

Article about how the stimulus money will give a big boost to the wireless industry, especially for WiFi equipment vendors:
Press release

World’s first commercial 4G/LTE was unveiled in Sweden by Ericsson and TeliaSonera:

Photos and an article about the Android-based HTC Lancaster that is expected to be released by AT&T in August:

Photo and article about the Android-based Motorola Heron, expected to be released later this year for AT&T:

HTC is planning to release an Android-based phone for the China market, which would be the first legally sold Android-based phone for China. The software has been customized for China Mobile (the world’s largest carrier with 500 million accounts!) and the line of Android-customized phones will be called OPhones:

The unsubsidized price for the Palm Pre is $850, which seems to indicate that Sprint is heavily subsidizing the Pre phones for their customers:

The Palm Pre boost for Sprint might be short-lived because Palm apparently has another smartphone coming out later this year for AT&T:

RIM is opening a data center in Atlanta and will create 200 high-tech jobs (average salary of $70k, decent for that region) for developers to work on next-generation BlackBerry devices:

Netbooks have really been catching on–3 million netbooks were sold during the first half of 2008 and about 10 million were sold during the second half of 2008. This report says that netbooks are catching on with the under-21 market, which could lead to tremendous growth:

Article about the controversy going on for Microsoft’s pricing strategy for netbook vendors:

Man passed out while driving his truck due to low blood sugar…so his 6-year-old boy moved from the back seat and drove the truck for several blocks until a police officer could run up to the truck and put the gear into park to stop the truck. The boy’s 3-year-old brother was also in the back seat while all this was going on:

May 25, 2009

LOTD for May 25

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 8:14 pm

Google Earth found a nice way to honor our fallen troops, creating a map that will connect people with the stories of every American and Coalition serviceman and woman that lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. You can see photos, learn about how they died, visit memorial websites with comments from family and friends, and explore the places they called home and where they died:

French-developed security platform turns e-mail into the electronic equivalent of registered mail:

Mexico is erecting a statue to the swine flu’s “patient zero”:

Article about how the some newspapers have increased subscriptions and revenue by charging nonsubscribers for web access to their newspapers:

Scientists have discovered a key protein that might explain the anti-aging and anti-cancer benefits of dietary restriction:

Monthly testosterone injection for men has been found to be just as effective the pill or condoms. The main side effect was a change in sex drive, with men becoming *more* amorous:

Scientists have found a genetic link for autism, a specific region of chromosome 5:

UK researchers found that being bullied in childhood doubles a young person’s likelihood of having psychotic symptoms in early adolescence:

A new rabies virus has mutated to becoming contagious among skunks and foxes in Arizona, and it is spreading quickly:

May 23, 2009

LOTD for May 23

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 9:46 pm

Studies found that companies who have women in senior positions have greater financial success–for example, Fortune 500 companies that aggressively promote women have 34% higher profits and European firms with more women in power had their stock increase by 64% over two years, as compared to companies that do not had a 47% stock increase:

Man is suing a New Jersey medical school because he says he was harassed and eventually suspended for identifying himself as an African-American…even though he is white:

New Zealand’s world-leading sauvignon blanc’s flavor was analyzed and it turns out that a key ingredient is *cat’s pee*:,22049,25461618-5012895,00.html

Hurricane Ike left many people in Southeast Texas without electricity for days…and a mini-baby boom is expected now that it is about 9 months later:

I didn’t realize that Joe the Plumber publicly quit the Republican party…I guess I ignored him since that burst of publicity he had before the election:,8599,1896588,00.html

Ohio senior who attends a Christian private school was suspended for taking his girlfriend to her public school prom. Even though he’s going to miss his graduation, he says that it was worth it:

Great story about how a high school senior had to miss her senior prom because she was in the hospital due to E. coli, so they brought the prom to her in the hospital and she was crowned prom queen:

This woman wrote about letting her 9-year-old son ride the subway by himself and the uproar and media attention that followed. She brings up a lot of good points as to why she did it, but I guess all the negative news in the world makes it a reflex for me to wonder about the advisability of letting a child doing this:

May 22, 2009

LOTD for May 22

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:17 pm

The Department of Homeland Security will field tricorder-like tools that can monitor a patient’s medical condition from 40 feet away. Taking vital signs quickly could enable first responders to save lives:

The Pentagon is looking for hackers in high school and college:

ReconRobotics was given a $1.35 mil contract for 150 of their miniature throwable Recon Scout robots. Infantry or special ops units can throw the robots and assess hostile situations from a safe distance away:

DARPA is funding programs that will try to weaponize cyberattacks–having something that soldiers can carry around in their backpacks that will allow the non-specialist to use on the battlefield:

The “drivers” of the Mars rover Opportunity have discovered a wealth of information during their two-year exploration of Victoria Crater, including finding supporting evidence that water flowed once on the surface of Mars. Great photo of Victoria Crater in the article:

Shipping executive testified before Congress that the US should have armed federal security personnel to protect ships going through pirate-infested waters:

75-ton robot will be used to dismantle a nuclear reactor in the UK:

The BlackBerry Storm 2 is apparently being released next month from Verizon:

Nice summary of the battle between the state attorney generals and Craigslist over adult ads:

New Zealand couple asked their bank for a $6300 loan and the bank accidentally put $6.3 million in their account instead! Instead of telling the bank about the error, the couple transferred the bulk of the money to an offshore account and fled the country. They are now on a wanted list for Interpol, and Interpol sent an investigator to China because that is where the couple is believed to be hiding:

A woman that was caught shoplifting used her 2-month-old nephew as a weapon to get away…TWICE throwing the tiny baby at people who tried to stop her from getting away!

More than just the athletes are training for the Winter Olympics (February in Vancouver)–a Canadian agency has already begun training Vancouver’s prostitutes:

LOTD ready Jason sent me this funny comic that relates to many of the links I post here:

May 21, 2009

LOTD for May 21

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 7:01 pm

Robotic therapy shows promise for helping children with brain injuries and those with cerebral palsy:

Article about the Terminator-like walking robots being developed for the DoD:

The House hearing on the Osprey took just 5 minutes and consisted of both political parties sharply criticizing the Pentagon for “stonewalling” the review of the Osprey:

Instead of using just the three spatial dimensions for disc storage, researchers are looking to also use spectral (color) and polarization dimensions…this could result in storage devices 2000x current devices being available in as little as 5 years:

Article about how the GPS system is “close to breakdown”, based on a GAO report saying that some of the crucial GPS satellites could fail as early as next year:

The IRS is apparently lax about destroying sensitive tax documents–anyone looking in trash bins at the IRS can find a wealth of sensitive information that could be invaluable to identity thieves:

NTT DoCoMo is releasing a 3G handset that also can serve as a WiFi Access Point! That would eliminate my need for a home broadband connection, as the phone can serve 8 WiFi devices (6 if WiFi security is used):

Acer will release an Android-based phone this year:

I love this stand-up routine by Jimmy Kimmel at the ABC upfronts this week:

For Lori–there were less than 100 million votes for the American Idol finalists…and 38 million of those votes were from Arkansas!

The House Speaker for the State of Arkansas posted a twitter message last night and his wife, kid, and he accounted for more than 1,000 votes for Kris Allen. I’m sure that linking himself to Kris Allen won’t hurt his image with his voters…

For Lori–Kate from John and Kate Plus 8 really comes off looking bad in articles lately:

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