Thursday, January 23, 2014

Stuff I'm reading while waiting for the rain to fall

Here's a random collection of stuff I enjoyed...

  • Some of what we did at Danger: The future that everyone forgot
    the early cast at Danger was largely from Apple, WebTV, General Magic, and Be. I was one of those Apple people. Joe had invited me to lunch one day—sushi, as I recall—and when we were finished eating he casually mentioned that he and Andy had started a new company and asked if I wanted a job. I said, “yes,” without even asking what the company was going to do. I figured that it would probably be cool.
  • Evgeny vs. the internet
    Depending on whom you ask, Evgeny Morozov is either the most astute, feared, loathed, or useless writer about digital technology working today. Just 29 years old, from an industrial town in Belarus, he appeared as if out of nowhere in the late aughts, amid the conference-goers and problem solvers working to shape our digital futures, a hostile messenger from a faraway land brashly declaring the age of big ideas and interconnected bliss to be, well, bullshit.
  • Book Review: Good Math
    Software engineers need to have a good understanding of mathematics. In this newsletter, we review a book written by a geek and aimed at the geek who wants to discover interesting facts about maths.
  • Using Rust for an Undergraduate OS Course
    The default language choice for Operating Systems courses is C. Nearly all (at least 90% from my cursory survey, the remainder using Java; if anyone knows of any others, please post in the comments!) current and recent OS courses at major US universities use C for all programming assignments. C is an obvious choice for teaching an Operating Systems course since is it the main implementation language of the most widely used operating systems today (including Unix and all its derivatives), and is also the language used by nearly every operating systems textbook (with the exception of the Silberschatz, Galvin, and Gagne textbook which does come in a Java version). To paraphrase one syllabus, "We use C, because C is the language for programming operating systems."
  • Where will we live?
    A housing shortage that has been building up for the past thirty years is reaching the point of crisis. The party in power, whose late 20th-century figurehead, Margaret Thatcher, did so much to create the problem, is responding by separating off the economically least powerful and squeezing them into the smallest, meanest, most insecure possible living space. In effect, if not in explicit intention, it is a let-the-poor-be-poor crusade, a Campaign for Real Poverty. The government has stopped short of explicitly declaring war on the poor. But how different would the situation be if it had?
  • Albanian can be done!
    The Ottomans in their extreme arrogance will only leave a token force of between 2K and 3K to besiege your capital. This is your saving grace. The smaller army will take longer to defeat the garrison and, unless dice rolls perpetually go against you as they are wont to do in critical battles, you should be able to defeat the army with your starting 3K and reset the siege.
  • How a 1,500-ton ocean liner turns into a cannibal-rat-infested ghost ship
    But both De Rhoodes and the Irish coast guard already tried to find the ocean liner a slew of times last year (paywall), to no avail, as the New Scientist reports. The New Scientist explains that surveillance equipment has some pretty big deficiencies when pitted against the ocean’s vastness.
  • Swell that produced huge waves in Hawaii to hit California coast,0,2062739.story#ixzz2rGTNzVwp
    According to one buoy northwest of the island of Kauai, the surf heading toward Hawaii was at its highest level since 1986, Tom Birchard, a senior forecast for the National Weather Service in Honolulu, told the Los Angeles Times.
  • An Illustrated Guide to F1′s Radical New Engine
    In recent years Formula 1 has made a big push toward efficiency, and to make the technology propelling guys like Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso around the track at least somewhat relevant to the cars the rest of us drive. They’ve experimented with kinetic energy recovery systems and even toyed with the idea of making the cars run only on electricity in the pits. Beginning this year, teams are are downsizing from a 2.4-liter V8s to 1.6-liter V6s that feature direct injection, turbocharging and a pair of energy recovery systems that pull in juice from exhaust pressure and braking.

1 comment:

  1. I got that 'Good Math' book from the library. I have only read some of it. The author sure likes to type. What percentage of a math book should be equations vs. other text? I think I like about 5%. This book is less than 1%.