August, 2002

Saturday, August 31, 2002

Smallpox vaccine may provide long-term immunity - "In the US, the smallpox vaccine was required for school entry prior to 1972, and about 60% of the US population has been vaccinated."

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Friday, August 30, 2002

Doubts Grow on 'Covering' of Options - "the bottom line is that the corporation is not an arms-length lender to its top executives. And in this case, particularly since the loan is so short term and well collateralized, there's no reason they can't find financing apart from the corporation"

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Did chimps outlast ancient AIDS? - "the chimp's lack of genetic diversity, which was found in genes related to the immune system's defense against disease, suggests that a lethal sickness attacked chimps in the distant past"

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Poll shows free speech support down - "Those less likely to support newspaper rights included people without a college education, Republicans, and evangelicals, the survey found."

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Lobbying for insecurity - "We already knew that security is less a technical problem than a human problem. If true, Microsoft's alleged NSA coup demonstrates that it's a political one as well."

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Thursday, August 29, 2002

Al-Qaeda 'poised to strike again' - "this document reflects the challenge of controlling an organisation that is spread across the world, with no central leadership, and which has a cunning ability to hide itself within benign organisations"

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Start-up valuations not at bottom yet - "That air suggests that VCs still have too much too spend. That might be what's keeping up valuations"

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Wednesday, August 28, 2002

The Talent Myth - "Managers are supposed to take detailed notes on their employees throughout the year, in order to remove subjective personal reactions from the process of assessment. You can grade someone's performance only if you know their performance. And, in the freewheeling culture of Enron, this was all but impossible. People deemed 'talented' were constantly being pushed into new jobs and given new challenges."

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Seniors battle scooters in S.F. turf war / Demonstrators fight proposed state law that could allow two-wheelers on sidewalks - "there are no data on accidents"

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nikepresto :: Le Parkour's TV Spots - "When a chicken in this neighborhood gets angry it will chase you down."

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Tuesday, August 27, 2002

Tipping Toward Hate by Alisa Solomon - "Experienced advocates from both sides have rushed in to support student efforts, but rather than fill in some of the knowledge gaps, they have contributed to the polarization."

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The Naked Face - "Emotion doesn't just go from the inside out. It goes from the outside in."

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Monday, August 26, 2002

When Feds attack - "The court's ruling would permit the employer to 'sniff' your e-mail or Internet passwords (or, for that matter, banking or medical record passwords), and later use that data to read your files, because you had no 'expectation of privacy' when entering the passwords." - READ THIS

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Can Global Warming Trigger a 'Little ice Age' - "Not to downplay El Ni?o in the least, because it causes grave human suffering and billions of dollars in damage - but El Niño is relatively short-lived. It lasts only a year or two."

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Why the only certainty about the La Palma tsunami is that it WILL happen - "As the wave spreads out it looses its strength, but it will still be several tens of metres high as it strikes the United States."

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Friday, August 23, 2002

Carry-on coffee allowed again at airports - "El Al still asks those questions, but it's still part of a larger process where they're interrogating passengers, which is what we need to do in this country"

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Thursday, August 22, 2002

Wildlife park to add mammoth attraction - "using a technique that involves impregnating an Indian elephant -- its closest genetic relative -- with mammoth sperm and then repeating the procedure with its offspring could produce a creature that is 88 percent mammoth in 50 years"

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Saturday, August 17, 2002

Winged robot learns to fly

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Friday, August 16, 2002

The Waco Road to Baghdad - "Though the president's harshest critics think he's stupid, I've always maintained that the real problem is that he thinks we are stupid."

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Thursday, August 15, 2002

Where Freedom Reigns - "If Islam is ever to undergo a reformation, as Christianity and Judaism did, it's only going to happen in a Muslim democracy. People say Islam is an angry religion. I disagree. It's just that a lot of Muslims are angry, because they live under repressive regimes, with no rule of law, where women are not empowered and youth have no voice in their future. What is a religion but a mirror on your life?"

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Justice Dept. Balks at Effort to Study Antiterror Powers - "Since I've been here, I have never known an administration that is more difficult to get information from that the oversight committees are entitled to."

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Gene Mutations Linked to Language Development - "Researchers are likely to try to introduce the genetic mutations into mice as part of their work, but they said many other genetic changes would likely be necessary to produce a talking animal, and several said they doubted anything of the sort would ever be possible, let alone desirable."

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Mice first to produce other species' sperm

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Going up? Space elevator wins support - "Expected to be operational in 15 years, the space elevator's biggest advantage is the tonnage it can deliver." - Tthe space elevator's biggest advantage is that it benefits from economies of scale - something that is not true of any rocket based space transport.

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The myth of cybersecurity - "But 'weak encryption' is no longer a reasonable excuse for insecure systems. It's clear by now that real security comes not just from strong crypto, but from recognizing and embracing human strengths, frailties and common behaviors in building, managing and using complex systems. People are always the weakest link."

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Wednesday, August 14, 2002

Judge Skewers U.S. Curbs on Detainee - "I have no desire to have an enemy combatant get out of any status," Doumar said. "However, I do think that due process requires something other than a basic assertion by someone named Mobbs that they have looked at some papers and therefore they have determined he should be held incommunicado. Just think of the impact of that. Is that what we're fighting for?"

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And Justice for All - "Inside the U.S. intelligence community, sources tell NEWSWEEK, there were high-level doubts about Ashcroft's dramatic announcement of an ongoing plot from the very beginning. But those views received scant attention at the White House, officials say."

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Camps for Citizens: Ashcroft's Hellish Vision - "For more than 200 years, security and liberty have been viewed as coexistent values. Ashcroft and his aides appear to view this relationship as lineal, where security must precede liberty."

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Vision Quest - "Which sounds like hooey, until you check the records. He applied for his first patent, on an artificial hip improvement, at age 13. He was into college at 14 and hooked on the artificial-vision challenge by 18. He dropped out of Vanderbilt to pursue independent research on visual physiology, supporting himself as a Porsche mechanic."

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Ex-Enron Execs Seek Millions in Severance - "Certain employees are entitled to ask for 'administrative expenses' to reimburse them for work they did that helped preserve the value of the company after it went into bankruptcy. The creditors committee argued that most of them did no work after the filing. "

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Jet contrails leave their mark on climate - "We believe based on their altitude that contrails are more likely to warm the Earth, similar to natural high (cirrus) clouds, but the fact that more of them occur during the daytime when jet traffic is highest, and they are more likely to reflect sunlight at that time, suggests that they might (have) a net cooling (effect) when considered across a 24-hour period"

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Tuesday, August 13, 2002

Initially recommended drug dosages often too high, study finds - "great pressure is placed on defining a drug dosage early in the clinical evaluation stage, when information about the drug and its actions is sparse"

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Catholics reject evangelization of Jews - "the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops declared unequivocally that the biblical covenant between Jews and God is valid and therefore Jews do not need to be saved through faith in Jesus"

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Monday, August 12, 2002

Terror attacks brought drastic decision: Clear the skies - "Sept. 11 is Sliney's first day on the job as national operations manager, the chess master of the air traffic system."

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Scott Adams: Cubicle Crimes - "I have some friends in law enforcement who say the only crooks that get caught are the stupid ones. Assuming this holds true for C.E.O.'s, it's bad news for the economy."

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Open Source Throws in the Towel - "A legislative proposal to be unfurled next week will force employees of the state of California into using whatever pre-alpha or amateur coded offerings each open source vendor chooses to bundle, and prevent all government departments from buying equivalent or even functional proprietary software from Microsoft or any other company."

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Hamas, Fatah mull cease-fire draft plan - "In another development, a Fatah representative in the Palestinian Legislative Council, Kadura Fares, has proposed dismantling the Palestinian Authority, on the grounds that the current leadership (which mostly came from Tunis) is more interested in self-preservation than in ways to solve the political, social, and economic crisis. "

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Saturday, August 10, 2002

The first wave - "The standards of joy are precious, holy, awesome to behold in raw form; the standards of 'making a living' are safe, stable, calculating every risk by marketing standards rather than technical-adventure feasibility."

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Friday, August 09, 2002

Joe Eszterhas: Hollywood's Responsibility for Smoking Deaths - "I have been an accomplice to the murders of untold numbers of human beings."

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New Method Said to Solve Key Problem in Math - "Ours was a completely new and unexplored approach. Consequently, it gave us hope that we might succeed."

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Income Redistribution, GOP-Style - The House takes money from the poor and spends it on the rich. - "Although the Republican takeover of the House of Representatives in November 1994 was widely heralded as a conservative revolution against Big Government, from 1995 to 2001, the amount of taxpayer money going to the average congressional district increased 30 percent (discounting for inflation)."

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Thursday, August 08, 2002

UCLA researchers check brain waves to predict effectiveness of antidepressants

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Telecom looks to solar-powered planes to reduce overhead - "The signal covered an area equivalent to a large metropolitan area and surpassed traditional TV broadcasts in terms of quality."

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Edsger Wybe Dijkstra 1930 - 2002

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Inconstant Speed of Light May Debunk Einstein - "it doesn't mean we just throw the books in the bin, because it's in the nature of scientific revolution that the old theories become incorporated in the new ones"

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Wednesday, August 07, 2002

Experts Consider How to Stop a Variant of Mad Cow Disease - "Researchers do not know how the disease spreads among animals in either the wild or in captivity, Dr. Miller said, nor does anyone know how to control it."

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Tuesday, August 06, 2002

Bruce Sterling: A Contrarian View of Open Source - "the very idea that there should be any commercial activity whatsoever in a cathedral ñ this was enough to make the world's best known prophet and pacifist philosopher completely blow his top. This interesting divine perspective is kinda overlooked in Eric Raymond's metaphorical treatments"

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Skulls Found in Africa and in Europe Challenge Theories of Human Origins - "But the fact that modern Homo sapiens is the only hominid living today is quite misleading, an exception to the rule dating only since the demise of Neanderthals some 30,000 years ago."

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Monday, August 05, 2002

Cash is welcome burden for some techs - "You've got this massive cash hoard, and you're no longer a growth company"

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Friday, August 02, 2002

Senator proposes stock option reforms - "Lieberman's bill sidesteps the accounting debate. Instead, it includes measures to encourage broad distribution of options and accountability to shareholders, while reducing incentives for executives to manipulate earnings, said Adam Kovacevich, a Lieberman spokesman."

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HighWLAN: A Driving Wireless Network [Aug. 01, 2002] - "IRC is where this idea came from and it was simple enough to get up and running. That is, it would have been simple enough to get up and running if one of us had actually remembered to download an ircd before we started."

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Thursday, August 01, 2002

Studies Suggest Unknown Form of Matter Exists

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Is your IT department full of dope smokers?

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The Bay Area - "Yet it would be hard to describe the Bay Area's mood as disconsolate. Most people seem to realise that the dotcom extravaganza was not going to last."

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