The biggest thing that happened this summer was my daughter Jordan moved out! Yep, she's off to college... flew the roost. And turned 18. Wow, they do grow up so fast. She's doing great, we're very proud of her. And this means for the first time since I started blogging, I've changed my "about me" page. I no longer live with three of my four daughters, now just two.
For the first time since going public, GOOG announced earnings, and their stock price jumped from $140 to $160. Which prompted Bambi Francisco at CBS Marketwatch to predict $400. Bubble? What bubble?
Did you see this? Global Warming Bombshell. "Canadian scientists Stephen McIntyre and Ross McKitrick have uncovered a fundamental mathematical flaw in the computer program that was used to produce the hockey stick... Suddenly the hockey stick, the poster-child of the global warming community, turns out to be an artifact of poor mathematics." Wow.
The Scientist examines California's proposition 71, the "stem cell initiative". The primary opposition to this is coming from ardent Christians, who somehow equate "stem cell research" with "abortion". The tenuous link is that embryonic stem cells are often harvested from miscarried or aborted fetuses. I think stem cell research is very promising. However I have a different objection; this proposition would create a $3B publicly funded institute. California is flat broke. How the heck are we going to afford this? Not to mention, is this really an efficient way to "do science"? No. The best thing the state can do is stay out of the way of academia and private industry. Arnold is supporting 71, but I can't figure out why; it just doesn't make economic sense.
GNXP took a close look at AIDS affecting evolution in Africa. "Three biologists from the University of California, Berkeley, show in Nature that over a period of several generations, AIDS could alter the frequency of specific genetic mutations in African populations, delaying the average time between HIV infection and onset of disease." This is natural selection in action! (Not to be confused with unnatural selection, which is swamping these effects...)
Matt Webb considers skeuomorphs. "A skeuomorph is a design feature that is no longer functional in itself but that refers back to a feature that was functional at an earlier time."
This is interesting. If you're a Tivo aficionado, you know that the old Series/1 Tivos were eminently hackable, whereas the newer Series/2 Tivos are not. Which makes the Series/1s more desirable for a certain class of user (yes, I am running a webserver on my Tivo, aren't you?) Anyway apparently it is now possible to hack Tivo Series/2s! Those Dutch programmers...