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Web/Tech

December 18, 2014

"What are some stories from the good old days of Microsoft and young Bill Gates that may not have been written in the popular press?"

Including an excellent one about billg's mom.

December 11, 2014

"Financially speaking, which computer languages can earn the most for the programmer?"

Not close to consensus but an interesting discussion at Quora.

"Who Buys Music Anymore? A Statistical Inquiry"

It's mainly the olds who are still buying CDs.

December 04, 2014

"Stayed Up All Night"

Make your own mixtapes on the Web

(For those of you too young to remember mixtapes, see John Cusack in High Fidelity.)

Link via Metafilter.

December 02, 2014

"12 Technologies We Need To Stop Stalling On And Develop Now"

Especially "Cell Modeling For Brain Emulation" and "Genuine Anti-Aging Interventions".

November 01, 2014

"King of click: the story of the greatest keyboard ever made"

That would be the IBM Model M.

And yes, speaking as someone who used one, it was great. 

October 21, 2014

Another modern problem rears its ugly head

Forget ISIS and Ebola, this is really, really bad: modern technology has made it much more difficult to be a music snob.

My record collection is no longer a lifestyle, a biography, a status. The identities that I and a generation of fellow aesthetes spent our lives fashioning are suddenly obsolete. They turned out to be mere patterns of consumption, no more resilient than the patterns of production that provoked them. Not content to ruin music for the first three decades of my life, the major labels have collapsed and ruined dating too. I will probably never forgive them, if I ever get around to forgiving myself.

October 02, 2014

"Here's What Everyone Is Getting Wrong About The Apple Nude Celebrity Photo Attack"

If accurate, this is very interesting.

But buried in an extensive interview with Charlie Rose, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that Jennifer Lawrence and her fellow celebrities fell victim to something called a "phishing scam."

September 25, 2014

"Development of Tiny Thorium Reactors Could Wean the World Off Oil In Just Five Years"

I can't evaluate the science or engineering, but if this even half right, shouldn't we have an Apollo-like project to do this ASAP?

(Or maybe this: "What If Giant Space-Based Solar Panels Could Beam Unlimited Power To The Earth?")

September 22, 2014

"The Downside of Giving Every Student a Laptop"

I believe it

A new study suggests the policy may be doing more harm than good. It finds public school students in North Carolina who gain their first regular access to a home computer between the fifth and eighth grades experience “a persistent decline in reading and math test scores.”

In their analysis of data from 2000 to 2005, economist Jacob Vigdor and his colleagues warn that, for disadvantaged youngsters, the positive impact of having access to online instruction “may be negated by counterproductive use of computers, particularly by students in unsupervised home environments.”

Makes L.A.'s initiative seem all the more dopey: "Supt. Deasy's early and avid support of iPads under intense scrutiny".

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