Link Collection

August 23, 2009

LOTD for August 23

Filed under: Uncategorized — gokamoto @ 12:21 am

Robots with artificial animal-inspired brains quickly evolved to deceive and cheat each other. Do we really want to encourage robots to cheat and deceive in order to look out for their self-preservation while we also start to arm robots?
http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/08/real-life-decepticons-robots-learn-to-cheat/

Nice summary of the electric car development by each car manufacturer:
http://nextbigfuture.com/2009/08/electric-cars-mitsubishi-now-nissan.html

Interesting summary of the decline in net worth of the super-rich. John McAfee (the founder of the antivirus software company) went from a net worth of over $100 million to $4 million, forcing him to sell his 10-passenger Cessna jet and fly coach instead, and to auction off all of his big properties to get cash to pay his bills:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/21/business/economy/21inequality.html

Interesting feature article analyzing the Cash for Clunkers program pros and cons:
http://www3.signonsandiego.com/stories/2009/aug/23/8216clunkers8217-provides-quick-test-stimulus/?metro&zIndex=153975

Feature article on the years it took to get approval to make the Rock Band game for the Beatles:
http://www.wired.com/gaming/gamingreviews/magazine/17-09/mf_rockband

Identity fraud is at its highest level in five years, but human error apparently results in most of these cases and not hackers. Problems identified include records dumped in the trash and flash drives lost at conferences or laptops left behind at airports (business travelers lose 500,000 laptops at airports each year!). This article also has some pretty bizarre cases of personal information getting leaked–a Virginia gas station attendant refilled the receipt printer with a used roll that had prior customers’ credit card data printed on the back, a New York community college mailed 14,000 alumni magazines with the recipients’ Social Security numbers printed on the back, and the State of Louisiana mailed 150 tax-bill reminders with a second taxpayer’s data on the back!
http://www.smartmoney.com/spending/budgeting/dingbat-data-leaks/

GM’s pilot program to have their California dealers sell cars on eBay generated interest (630,000 visits in the first week) but resulted in few sales. In the first 9 days of the pilot program, GM dealers listed 16,228 vehicles on eBay and completed 45 sales–but GM said that it got customers to go to dealers to complete sales that were not recorded on eBay:
http://editorial.autos.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=1086065

Study found that the spleen is much more useful than previously thought, especially for recovery from heart attacks and diseases. The study results seem to agree with a report from 1977 that found that World War II soldiers who had undergone spleen removal had higher rates of death due to diseases in general (specifically including heart disease and pneumonia) during the 28 years after the war, compared with soldiers who kept their spleens:
http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/46001/title/The_not-so-dispensable_spleen

70% of American children don’t get enough vitamin D, which has a variety of negative health effects for them when they are children and may increase their risk of developing diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and a variety of cancers. One problem is that parents are much more worried about skin cancer and are so diligent about putting sun block on kids that kids cannot generate vitamin D from being in the sun:
http://www.cnn.com/2009/HEALTH/08/03/vitamin.d.children/index.html?iref=newssearch

The most malignant known form of malaria may have jumped from chimps to humans, and the study found that similar disease-causing parasites may soon jump from monkeys and apes to humans:
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/08/090803-malaria-origins-chimpanzees.html

Study of brain neurons seems to indicate that we actually learn more from success than failure:
http://www.livescience.com/health/090804-learn-from-success.html

Story about what happened when a husband asked his wife that he wanted a divorce and she chose not to believe him:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/02/fashion/02love.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

It was a *great* idea for Texas to spend their money on facility improvements for athletics instead of making an endowment like most schools. The stock market crash resulted in most schools losing *huge* portions of their athletic endowments while Texas is earning $25 million from the premium seating projects they spent their money on. This article goes over the disparity in athletic departments in the country–25 athletic programs make money (an average of about $4 million per year) while the other 94 D-IA programs lose money (an average of about $10 million per year):
http://www.statesman.com/sports/content/sports/stories/longhorns/2009/08/22/0822finances.html?cxtype=rss&cxsvc=7&cxcat=54

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