The Water Cooler

Science, Technology, Business, and Politics

Friday, October 03, 2003

Many-to-Many Group weblog on social software, featuring contributors such as Clay Shirky.

BBC NEWS | Technology | Half-Life 2 code leaked online: "The makers of the eagerly awaited Half-Life 2 have appealed for help to track down who leaked the source code of the game on the internet. "

Chickens Prefer Beautiful Faces: "We trained chickens to react to an average human female face but not to an average male face (or vice versa). In a subsequent test, the animals showed preferences for faces consistent with human sexual preferences (obtained from university students). This suggests that human preferences arise from general properties of nervous systems, rather than from face-specific adaptations. We discuss this result in the light of current debate on the meaning of sexual signals and suggest further tests of existing hypotheses about the origin of sexual preferences."

A great idea if I've ever heard one. It's what's best for the Iraqi people, it bears the sacrosanct seal of international precedent, and it screws the French.

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

GPS will pinpoint Coke prize winners Next year Coca-Cola is planning to give prizes to people who buy special cans of Coke by tracking them down using GPS tags embedded in the cans and bottles and presenting them with prizes including a Hummer H2 and one million dollars in gold.

Building a Balancing Scooter DIY Segway

The Presidency Wars David Brooks nicely summarizes the current state of politics

Yahoo! News - Studies: Don't Believe Homework Hype: "The image of students lugging home heavy packs of books may be familiar in many homes, but two new studies offer a different picture: The nation's homework load is light. "

Tuesday, September 30, 2003 - Engineering news, engineering information and engineering jobs for engineering professionals: "A prototype digital video system producing images of such high quality that the human eye struggles to distinguish them from reality has been developed by Japanese engineers. " | Girl, 5, makes bong in class (September 29, 2003): "A five-year-old Territory girl shocked teachers when she showed her class how to make a bong out of a Coke bottle during a ``show and tell'' session."

Monday, September 29, 2003

Job growth returns to the Street - Sep. 29, 2003: "Wall St. forecast: Job growth. Among traders, brokers, and analysts, hiring is beginning to creep up." - Hundreds riot near U. of Washington - Sep. 29, 2003: "Hundreds of people along Fraternity Row near the University of Washington built a huge bonfire, overturned a car and threw rocks and bottles before police in riot gear used pepper spray to break up the crowd, authorities said. "

ParAllele universe grows You don't have to be a biochemist to see there's something different about the South San Francisco company, which makes genetic discovery tools. In fact, Mohr, Davidow Ventures general partner Bill Ericson -- who isn't a biochemist -- worked hard to edge out other suitors to lead the round. Existing investors Abingworth Management, Index Ventures and Versant Ventures also participated.

France to U.S.: "Yak yak blah yak." The French giving advice on nation building is like Larry King giving advice on marriage. How do you say, fermez votre bouche!

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Slashdot | Wall Street Meat. Book review, then the usual slashdot discussion (some I WANT EVERYTHING FREE AND NOW with some gems as well).

Star Carlton - Wrath 2 another dumb game.

Star Carlton - Police Sniper Fun video game.

The Daily News Online: Who would have thought that two guys from Southern Washington would be involved in something like this? "Albertini, 28, told Cowlitz County sheriff's deputies that he, Ambrosia M. Rodriguez, 18 of Kelso, and Jay Dee Powell Jr., 18, of Longview were in a pickup shortly before 9 p.m."

Yahoo! News - World Photos - AP

Lonely Campus Voices Most good universities have at least one conservative professor on campus. When, for example, some group at Harvard wants to hold a panel discussion on some political matter, it can bring out the political theorist Harvey Mansfield to hold up the rightward end. At Princeton it's Robert George. At Yale it's Donald Kagan.