31 January 2011

Physicists call for alien messaging protocol #physics #aliens

In a submission to the international journal, Space Policy, postgraduate astrophysicists Dimitra Atri, Julia DeMarines and Jacob Haqq-Misra suggested that a protocol be developed to improve the likelihood that messages would be understood.

The messaging to extraterrestrial intelligence protocol (METI, pdf) would include constraints and guidelines for signal encoding, message length, information content, the researchers wrote.

It should also specify a transmission strategy, they said, suggesting a simple physical or mathematical language with the signal repeated regularly to avoid being overlooked as noise.

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Physicists call for alien messaging protocol #physics #aliens

In a submission to the international journal, Space Policy, postgraduate astrophysicists Dimitra Atri, Julia DeMarines and Jacob Haqq-Misra suggested that a protocol be developed to improve the likelihood that messages would be understood.

The messaging to extraterrestrial intelligence protocol (METI, pdf) would include constraints and guidelines for signal encoding, message length, information content, the researchers wrote.

It should also specify a transmission strategy, they said, suggesting a simple physical or mathematical language with the signal repeated regularly to avoid being overlooked as noise.

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25 January 2011

Problems with your router? Reset its base channel #router #wifi

We've been struggling for several months with our super high speed wireless routers. Replacing them did not solve the problem. We work with 60 MB broadband here, and were lost without it.

We live in an heavily populated neighborhood with hundreds of wireless routers within a one block area. This means that almost everyone has their wifi router base channel set to 11 - delivered that way in the box.

Can you see the signal for your wifi router, yet your devices - iPhones, laptops - cannot communicate and connect to your wifi network? Then connect your PC with a cable to your router. Open your browser and go to your Router Configurator http://192.168.0.1 (check router label for this exact URL).

Go to your Wireless Basic Settings and change the channel.

Your devices are just having trouble connecting to your wifi signal with all those routers signaling on the same channel in such close proximity to one another.

Now, unplug router and modem. Restart your modem first; wait a few minutes and restart your router.

Hope this helps. Many thanks to Rick at UPC NL call center for working through this with me. What a relief and such a simple solution.

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22 January 2011

Why You Learn More Effectively by Writing Than Typing

The act of writing helps you clarify your thoughts, remember things better, and reach your goals more surely. Here's a look at the science and psychology behind writing, and why the pen may be mightier than the keyboard.

By Melanie Pinola Jan 21, 2011 01:00 PM

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17 January 2011

Virtual job-hunting: Technology fills situations vacant

Looking for a job - or trying to find a new employee? Then prepare for a technological revolution.

New tools, many of them related to the explosion in use of social media, are transforming the recruitment world.

Ready for your close-up? Graeme Anthony's video CV got him the job he was looking for.

Read rest of article by Rory Cellan-Jones Technology correspondent, BBC News :
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12194581

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15 January 2011

14 January 2011

Unfollowed: Pentagon Deletes Social Media Office

At a time when Facebook has 500 million users and Twitter is closing in on 200 million, the Pentagon no longer has a single person guiding its communications shop on how to use social media to get the military’s message out.

By Spencer Ackerman Email Author  January 13, 2011 

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Jimmy Wales says Wikipedia "too tough" for many

Wikipedia's founder tells the BBC that the online encyclopaedia must become easier to edit, to bring in a new generation of contributors.

By Jonathan Fildes
Wikipedia is too complicated for many people to modify despite billing itself as "the free encyclopaedia that anyone can edit", its founder has said.

Jimmy Wales told BBC News the site wants a new generation of contributors, including more women.

The online encyclopaedia, which is 10 years old on 15 January, is the world's fifth most popular site.

He said a lot of people were "afraid" to contribute to the site by the sometimes complicated code - known as Wiki mark-up - needed to format entries.

Go to BBC to read the original article.

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Researchers can predict your video game aptitude by imaging your brain

January 13, 2011

Researchers report that they can predict "with unprecedented accuracy" how well you will do on a complex task such as a strategic video game simply by analyzing activity in a specific region of your brain.

The findings, published in the online journal , offer detailed insights into the brain structures that facilitate learning, and may lead to the development of training strategies tailored to individual strengths and weaknesses.

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Why is a definition of life so important yet so elusive?

What is life?

Biologists have been unable to agree on a definition of the complex phenomenon known as "life." In a special collection of essays in Astrobiology, a peer-reviewed journal from Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., leaders in the fields of philosophy, science, and molecular evolution present a variety of perspectives on defining life.

Tables of content and a free sample issue are available online.

Why is a definition of life so important yet so elusive? 

Read further:

http://www.machineslikeus.com/news/what-life 

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13 January 2011

Barack Obama artwork case settled

Mannie Garcia's photo and Shepard Fairey's image

An artist behind an iconic image of Barack Obama and the Associated Press news agency have agreed to settle copyright infringement claims.

As part of the deal, New York artist Shepard Fairey has agreed not to use another AP photo in his work without first obtaining a licence.

The two sides have also reached a financial settlement, the terms of which have not been disclosed.

The case relates to a picture of the US president taken in 2006.

Street artist Fairey used the photo, taken by Mannie Garcia, when he created his Hope artwork during Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.

Fairey sued AP in 2009, seeking a declaration he did not violate its copyright with his iconic image.

Go to BBC to read the original article.

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11 January 2011

A-ha! Neural Evidence for Sudden Insight

ScienceDaily (May 12, 2010) — A recent study provides intriguing information about the neural dynamics underlying behavioral changes associated with the development of new problem solving strategies. The research, published by the Cell Press in the May 13 issue of the journal Neuron, supports the idea of "a-ha" moments in the brain that are associated with sudden insight.

 

New research supports the idea of "a-ha" moments in the brain that are associated with sudden insight. (Credit: iStockphoto/Kutay Tanir)

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Competition - Which is the smallest planet - um...Eris or Pluto? What's a few feet in space? A guess at best.

From The New York Times:

The War of the Worlds, Round 2

Now, researchers say that the rival to Pluto that was discovered six years ago is actually smaller than Pluto.

http://nyti.ms/ibPcwp

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Drug-induced kindness - Oxytocin turns out to be the hormone of the clan not universal

From The New York Times:

Depth of the Kindness Hormone Appears to Know Some Bounds

The love and trust that oxytocin promotes are not toward the world in general, just toward a person’s in-group.

http://nyti.ms/dMMBd4

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USA particle lab #Tevatron closing due to budget cuts - EU will now seek elusive Higgs boson particle #physics

Hunt for elusive Higgs boson particle - crucial to current theories of physics - will now fall to Europe's Large Hadron Collider (LHC). 

Tevatron ring (Fermilab)The Tevatron will end operations in 2011 as originally scheduled
CMS experiment at the LHC (Cern)The LHC is the only other rival in the race to detect the Higgs

The Higgs boson is of huge importance to the widely accepted theory of physics, known as the Standard Model.

It explains why other particles have mass, but, despite decades trying, no-one has yet detected it.

The LHC, which is based underground on the Franco-Swiss border near Geneva, is the only other competitor in the race to find the Higgs.

In 2010, physicists at Fermilab said they were closing in on the elusive particle.

The Tevatron and the LHC alone are powerful enough to probe energy ranges where the Higgs may reside.

Some physicists have previously said the European machine may not be in a position to detect the Higgs for two to three years.

Extending the Tevatron's lifetime beyond 2011 would have been a game-changer, giving the US lab a potential advantage in the race to make a discovery.

Cern, the organisation which runs the LHC, has for some time been planning to shut down the machine in late 2011 for up to one year.

But recently, officials had been considering whether to delay this scheduled closure - for maintenance work - until the end of 2012, giving the LHC more time to hunt for the elusive particle.

Fermilab would have needed an extra $35m per year to operate the Tevatron into 2014.


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Engineering team invents lab-on-a-chip for fast, inexpensive blood tests

While most blood tests require shipping a vial of blood to a laboratory for analysis and waiting several days for the results, a new device invented by a team of engineers and students at the University of Rhode Island uses just a pinprick of blood in a portable device that provides results in less than 30 minutes.


published: Monday, January 10, 2011 - 03:23 in Health; Medicine
http://esciencenews.com/articles/2011/01/10/engineering.team.invents.lab.a.chip.fast.inexpensive.blood.tests

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No left turn lane: 'Superstreet' traffic design reduces travel time 20% & collisions 46%

No left turn: 'Superstreet' traffic design improves travel time, safety

Published: Monday, January 10, 2011 - 11:37 

Related images

(click to enlarge)
Superstreets are thoroughfares where the left-hand turns from side streets are re-routed, as is traffic from side streets that needs to cross the thoroughfare. In both instances, drivers are first required to make a right turn and then make a U-turn around a broad median. This diagram shows superstreet traffic patterns. The lefthand image is of the most common superstreet design, in which traffic on the superstreet itself can turn left. In the righthand image, traffic on the superstreet cannot turn left.
Dr. Joe Hummer, North Carolina State University
"Superstreet" traffic designs result in faster travel times and significantly fewer accidents, according to the new study.
Dr. Joe Hummer, North Carolina State University

"The study shows a 20 percent overall reduction in travel time compared to similar intersections that use conventional traffic designs," says Dr. Joe Hummer, professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering at NC State and one of the researchers who conducted the study. "We also found that superstreet intersections experience an average of 46 percent fewer reported automobile collisions – and 63 percent fewer collisions that result in personal injury."

The so-called "superstreet" traffic design results in significantly faster travel times, and leads to a drastic reduction in automobile collisions and injuries, according to North Carolina State University researchers who have conducted the largest-ever study of superstreets and their impacts. Superstreets are surface roads, not freeways. It is defined as a thoroughfare where the left-hand turns from side streets are re-routed, as is traffic from side streets that needs to cross the thoroughfare. In both instances, drivers are first required to make a right turn and then make a U-turn around a broad median. While this may seem time-consuming, the study shows that it actually results in a significant time savings since drivers are not stuck waiting to make left-hand turns or for traffic from cross-streets to go across the thoroughfare.

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Men with macho faces attractive to fertile women - intelligence not accounted for

Men with macho faces attractive to fertile women

When their romantic partners are not quintessentially masculine, women in their fertile phase are more likely to fantasize about masculine-looking men than are women paired with George Clooney types.

Read the rest of the article:

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2 January 2011

Europe’s Young Grow Agitated Over Future Prospects - & they are not the only ones - 50-plussers also at risk

From The New York Times:

Europe’s Young Grow Agitated Over Future Prospects

Experts warn of volatility in state finances and the broader society as the most highly educated generation in the history of the Mediterranean hits one of its worst job markets.

http://nyti.ms/fBiNgy

Note: Those 50-plussers here in Europe also have no future prospects. Pensions have disappeared in a financial debacle. Opportunities to generate new work are extremely limited. And, the government wants to raise retirement age to 67. If you do not receive unemployment benefits, you are not even counted in statistics for the "unemployed".

Amidst all this, 50-plussers are also looking beyond European borders for opportunities to support themselves. The social contract is strangling them - and they are no longer even beneficiaries of it. Why does the system not work? What kind of new system can evolve from the existing one to include all efforts and not just a select or "loud" group?

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Finding a Use for Tumblr

From The New York Times:

BITS: Finding a Use for Tumblr

Trying to find a reason to use the highly popular social service Tumblr.

Nic Rad, a Brooklyn-based artist, answered the question most succinctly in a recent poston his own Tumblr, noting that "Tumblr is designed for daydreamers."

Read on.... http://nyti.ms/e0Ycfz

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How much has your marriage helped you to personally develop and grow - take the quiz

From The New York Times:

SUSTAINABLE LOVE: The Happy Marriage Is the ‘Me’ Marriage

For a long, fulfilling partnership: give your partner a chance to e-x-p-a-n-d. Take the quiz. http://nyti.ms/fcOlqU

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