Friday, February 6, 2009

Who wants to make a dumb choice?

This is untrue but funny.

'Millionaire' Contestant Makes Worst Use Of Lifelines Ever

NEW YORK - Idaho resident Kathy Evans brought humiliation to her friends and family Tuesday when she set a new standard for stupidity with her appearance on the popular TV show, 'Who Wants To Be A Millionaire.'

It seems that Evans, a 32-year-old wife and mother of two, got stuck on the first question, and proceeded to make what fans of the show are dubbing 'the absolute worst use of lifelines ever.'
After being introduced to the show's host Meredith Vieira, Evans assured her that she was ready to play, whereupon she was posed with an extremely easy $100 question. The question was: 'Which of the following is the largest?'

A) A Peanut
B) An Elephant
C) The Moon
D) Hey, who you calling large?

Immediately Mrs. Evans was struck with an all consuming panic as she realized that this was a question to which she did not readily know the answer.
'Hmm, oh boy, that's a toughie,' said Evans, as Vieira did her level best to hide her disbelief and disgust. 'I mean, I'm sure I've heard of some of these things before, but I have no idea how large they would be.'
Evans made the decision to use the first of her three lifelines, the 50/50. Answers A and D were removed, leaving her to decide which was bigger, an elephant or the moon. However, faced with an incredibly easy question, Evans still remained unsure.
'Oh! It removed the two I was leaning towards!' exclaimed Evans. 'Darn. I think I better phone a friend.'
Using the second of her two lifelines on the first question, Mrs. Evans asked to be connected with her friend Betsy, who is an office assistant.
'Hi Betsy! How are you? This is Kathy! I'm on TV!' said Evans, wasting the first seven seconds of her call. 'Ok, I got an important question. Which of the following is the largest? B, an elephant, or C, the moon. 15 seconds hun.'
Betsy quickly replied that the answer was C, the moon. Evans proceeded to argue with her friend for the remaining ten seconds.
'Come on Betsy, are you sure?' said Evans. 'How sure are you? Duh, that can't be it.'
To everyone's astonishment, the moronic Evans declined to take her friend's advice and pick 'The Moon.'
'I just don't know if I can trust Betsy. She's not all that bright. So I think I'd like to ask the audience,' said Evans.
Asked to vote on the correct answer, the audience returned 98% in favor of answer C, 'The Moon.' Having used up all her lifelines, Evans then made the dumbest choice of her life.
'Wow, seems like everybody is against what I'm thinking,' said the too-stupid-to-live Evans. 'But you know, sometimes you just got to go with your gut. So, let's see. For which is larger, an elephant or the moon, I'm going to have to go with B, an elephant. Final answer.'
Evans sat before the dumbfounded audience, the only one waiting with bated breath, and was told that she was wrong, and that the answer was in fact, C, 'The Moon.'

Caution...they walk among us!


This one is actually better! (No comments needed!)

Caution... They Walk Among Us!

Some guy bought a new fridge for his house. To get rid of his old fridge, he put it in his front yard and hung a sign on it saying: 'Free to good home. You want it, you take it.' For three days the fridge sat there without even one person looking twice at it. He eventually decided that people were too un-trusting of this deal.

It looked too good to be true, so he changed the sign to read: 'Fridge for sale $50.'

The next day someone stole it!

***They walk amongst us!***


One day I was walking down the beach with some friends when someone shouted....'Look at that dead bird!' Someone looked up at the sky and said...'where?'

***They walk among us!!***


While looking at a house, my brother asked the estate agent which direction was north because, he explained, he didn't want the sun waking him up every morning. She asked, 'Does the sun rise in the north?' When my brother explained that the sun rises in the east, and has for sometime, she shook her head and said, 'Oh, I don't keep up with that stuff'

***They Walk Among Us!!***


My colleague and I were eating our lunch in our cafeteria, when we overheard one of the administrative assistants talking about the sunburn she got on her weekend drive to the beach. She drove down in a convertible, but 'didn't think she'd get sunburned because the car was moving'.

***They Walk Among Us!!!!***


My sister has a lifesaving tool in her car it's designed to cut through a seat belt if she gets trapped She keeps it in the trunk.

***They Walk Among Us!!!!!***


I was hanging out with a friend when we saw a woman with a nose ring attached to an earring by a chain. My friend said, 'Wouldn't the chain rip out every time she turned her head?' I had to explain that a person's nose and ear remain the same distance apart no matter which way the head is turned...

***They Walk Among Us!!!!!!! ***


I couldn't find my luggage at the airport baggage area. So I went to the lost luggage office and told the woman there that my bags never showed up. She smiled and told me not to worry because she was a trained professional and I was in good hands. 'Now,' she asked me, 'Has your plane arrived yet?'...

(I work with professionals like this.)

***They Walk Among Us!!!!!!!!***


While working at a pizza parlour I observed a man ordering a small pizza to go. He appeared to be alone and the cook asked him if he would like it cut into 4 pieces or 6. He thought about it for some time before responding. 'Just cut it into 4 pieces; I don't think I'm hungry enough to eat 6 pieces.

***Yep, They Walk Among Us, too.!!!!!!!!

Sadly, not only do they walk among us, they also reproduce and vote !!!!

RIAA Lied To Congress About New Filesharing Suits

Posted by timothy on Friday February 06, @04:10AM

from the honestly-they're-all-at-the-cleaners dept.
The Courts
NewYorkCountryLawyer writes"On December 23, 2008, the RIAA's Mitch Bainwol sent a letter to the Judiciary and Commerce Committees of both the House and Senate, falsely representing to them that the RIAA 'discontinued initiating new lawsuits in August.' A copy of the letter is online (PDF). In fact, as many of you already know, the RIAA brought hundreds of new lawsuits since August. See, e.g., these 40 or so cases which just represent some of the cases brought in December."Maybe they're just taking a broad view of the world "initiate."

Italian Red Lights Rigged With Short Yellow Light

Posted by timothy on Thursday February 05, @09:42PM

from the decent-pellet-gun-might-help dept.
The CourtsGovernmentSoftwareTransportation
suraj.sun writes with an excerpt from Ars Technica which brings to mind the importance of auditable code for hardware used in law enforcement:"It's no secret that red light cameras are often used to generate more ticket revenue for the cities that implement them, but a scam has been uncovered in Italy that has led to one arrest and 108 investigations over traffic systems being rigged to stop sooner for the sole purpose of ticketing more motorists."

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Sustainable Dave Stops Taking Out Trash for One Year

garbage cansFor an entire year, Dave Chameidesput nothing on the curb for garbage pick up. Not even a box of recycling.

Instead, he put all of his trash in the basement. Sounds like a nasty basement? Probably not. The year long experiment in garbage conservation generated only 30 pounds of trash, 153 glass bottles, 64 plastic bottles and a 50-pound box of paper for recycling. Dave's personal garbage dump fit an organized 10 square feet of basement space.

If Dave can do it, there's no reason a lot of us can't take up the challenge and confuse city garbage pick-up folks. Some tips from Dave. No plastic bags, drink tap water, and think about the packaging of stuff you buy. Oh, and probably most importantly, get some worms working for you. Dave used a worm composting bin that ate up leftover foods and "a couple of pounds of paper a month".

Dave tracked his year through his blog 365daysoftrash and now runsSustainable Dave, a site on sustainability and not throwing stuff out. My city has a good organic bin program so I think I'll stay away from having a worm army in my house. But if Dave could reduce his waste in one year to what the average American puts out in six days, I'm sure there are a bunch of ways I can reduce my curb side pile.

LaserPup trains for battle with Laser Cats

by Paul Miller, posted Feb 5th 2009 at 2:10PM

We don't really know where to begin. LaserPup involves shooting a laser at a dog over the internet, nothing more, nothing less, but somehow it transcends traditionally pointless moddery and becomes something so much greater. Maybe it's because you shoot a dog with a laser over the internet. LaserPup is a ceiling-mounted laser and webcam whose beam can can be directed around the floor with an iPhone-friendly browser-based interface. There's switch for turning on and off the lights, and when the laser is activated or deactivated it makes a sound to alert the dog that it's time to get shot at by lasers. In the future, there was a nuclear war... video is after the break.

Honda VP Wants to Price Insight Below $20,000

the 2010 Honda InsightLast September, Honda announced that they were bringing back the Insight -- or at least the Insight brand identity -- and in 2009 they we're going to come after the Prius with a vengeance. With the Insight's launch date set for Earth Day, April 22nd, the suits at Honda are still deliberating over pricing options for the US market. Obviously, in this down market, the lower the price, the better. That's why Honda's executive VP Koichi Kondo is campaigning to sell the Insight for less than $20K.

If Honda is really serious about knocking the Prius out of the #1 spot, or even gaining a significant foothold in the hybrid market, they know they've got to go painfully low on price. The first market to see the Insight will be Japan, and the price for the Japanese is already set at1.89 million yen ($21,140), so I don't know how they will manage to sell the Insight in the US for under 20K -- but they might have to. Although some would argue that the EPA underestimated the Insight's fuel economy, the EPA rated it 43mpg city/40mpg Highway. Compare that to the Prius' 48/45.

One bad day at Halmark

My tire was thumping. 
I thought it was flat 

When I looked at the tire... 

I noticed your cat. 


First-Person Shooter Modified For Fire Drill Simulation

Posted by Soulskill on Thursday February 05, @06:52AM

from the crap-where's-a-medkit dept.
First Person Shooters (Games)The MilitaryUnited StatesGames
Hugh Pickens writes"Researchers at Durham University have modified a video game and turned it into a fire drill simulator using the Source engine (the 3D game engine used to drive Half-Life 2), and created a virtual model of one of the university's departments. Dr. Shamus Smith said that although 3D modeling software was available, modifying a video game was faster, more cost effective, and had better special effects. 'We were interested in using game technology over a customized application and the Source Engine, from Half-Life, is very versatile,' said Smith. 'We used the simulation to see how people behaved in an actual fire situation and to train people in "good practice" in a fire.' The team says the virtual environment helped familiarize people with evacuation routines and could also help identify problems with a building's layout. One problem, however, was that while the simulation worked for most people, those who played a lot of video games did some unusual things when using the simulation. 'If a door was on fire, [the gamers] would try and run through it, rather than look for a different exit,' said Smith."This makes me wonder to what extent entertainment software will fill the role of non-entertainment software as the tools and engines become more and more powerful. Ars mentions related news that the US Dept. of Naval Research is dumping millions of dollars into "virtual reality-like simulations of small-scale urban conflicts." It's unclear whether this is related to the US Army's similar program.

Rich Man, Poor Man: Body Language Can Indicate Socioeconomic Status, Study Shows

ScienceDaily (Feb. 5, 2009) — Socioeconomic status (SES) is determined by a number of factors such as wealth, occupation and schools attended. SES influences the food we eat, hobbies we participate in and can even have an impact on our health.

Read More

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Toward 'Invisible Electronics' And Transparent Displays

ScienceDaily (Feb. 5, 2009) — Researchers in California are reporting an advance toward the long-sought goal of "invisible electronics" and transparent displays, which can be highly desirable for heads-up displays, wind-shield displays, and electronic paper.

Read More

Happy Employees Are Critical For An Organization's Success, Study Shows

ScienceDaily (Feb. 4, 2009) — One's happiness might seem like a personal subject, but a Kansas State University researcher says employers should be concerned about the well-being of their employees because it could be the underlying factor to success.

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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Efficiently Producing Quantum Dots

Posted by kdawson on Wednesday February 04, @04:48AM

from the dots-i'll-give-you-dots dept.
generica1 writes"The Edmonton Journal is reporting on the University of Alberta's National Institute for Nanotechnology's recent invention of a new method to produce quantum dots — what are currently the world's smallest quantum dots, possibly allowing for startling increases in the efficiency of semiconductor-based equipment. 'Roughly speaking, we predict there could be a 1,000-time reduction in power consumption with electronic computers built in this new way,' said Robert Wolkow, a physicist at the University of Alberta and leader of the team behind the breakthrough. Read the article for a description of the wave-like phenomenon employed by Wolkow's team to accomplish a vastly lower power consumption during the transfer of electrons."

Human-Animal Hybrids Fail

Posted by timothy on Tuesday February 03, @12:00PM

from the good-help-hard-to-find dept.
SailorSpork writes"Fans of furries and anime-style cat girls will be disappointed by the news that attempts to create human animal hybrids have failed. Experiments by British scientists to create embryonic stem cells by putting human DNA into cow or rabbit eggs had raised ethical concerns, but the question of how we would treat sub-humans will have to wait until we actually figure out how to make them."

Students Call Space Station With Home-Built Radio

Posted by timothy on Tuesday February 03, @10:34AM

from the prince-albert-in-a-tin-can dept.
Pizzutz writes"Four Toronto college students have accomplished a technological feat that their teachers are calling a first. The Humber College seniorsmade contact with the International Space Station Monday with a radio system they designed and built themselves. School officials say that, to their knowledge, that's never been accomplished by students at the college level."Somewhat disappointingly, the students actually did have permission to make contact.

USB cake design worst birthday surprise in history

by Darren Murph, posted Feb 3rd 2009 at 7:01AM

Imagine this -- you walk into a custom confectionery and inform the design team that you want the image on a USB flash drive made onto a very special cake. In fact, you even leave the flash drive with them so they can really look it over. Sure, you'd think they would get to frost-brushing that unicorn flying through a rainbow right onto the cake, but apparently the artists in question had other ideas. Namely, creating a photo-perfect replica of a Lexar flash drive on the surface of what appears to be an otherwise delicious pile of sugar. Seriously. Too bad about that black icing, birthday boy.

[Via UberReview]

New Evidence From Excavations In Arcadia, Greece, Supports Theory Of 'Birth Of Zeus'

ScienceDaily (Feb. 3, 2009) — In the third century BCE, the Greek poet Callimachus wrote a 'Hymn to Zeus' asking the ancient, and most powerful, Greek god whether he was born in Arcadia on Mt. Lykaion or in Crete on Mt. Ida.

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Novel Approach To Create High-density Magnetic Data Storage

ScienceDaily (Feb. 3, 2009) — In order to achieve higher storage densities on computer disks, the last decades were dominated by optimization of magnetic materials, i.e. the magnetic particles (grains) were gradually shrunk while, at the same time, the magnetic stability (magnetic anisotropy) was increased.

Read more

Monday, February 2, 2009

"Magnetic Tornadoes" Could Offer New Data Storage Tech

Posted by ScuttleMonkey on Monday February 02, @02:47PM

from the where-your-data-stops-no-one-knows dept.
Data StorageTechnology
coondoggie writes to tell us about the latest technique researchers are investigating as a possible means to store data, magnetic tornadoes."Conventional computer memories store data in "bits" that consist of two magnetic elements that record data in binary form. When these elements are magnetized in the same direction, the computer reads the bit as a "0"; when magnetized in opposite directions, the bit represents a "1," researchers stated. According to scientists, a vortex forms spontaneously - one vortex per disk - in a small magnetic disk when the disk's diameter falls below a certain limit. Although the vortex does not whirl about like a meteorological tornado, the atoms in the material do orient themselves so that their magnetic states, or "moments," point either clockwise or counterclockwise around the disk's surface. At the center of the disk, the density of this rotation causes the polarity of the vortex core to point either up out of the disk or down like a tornado's funnel, researchers stated. Because the vortices that form on the disks contain two independently controllable and accessible magnetic parameters, they could form the basis for quaternary bits that would contain data written as a 0, 1, 2, or 3."