The Economist is my favorite magazine. They've been pretty balanced about the U.S. Presidential race, but overall I think they've favored Bush over Kerry. However, this may be changing. A recent article, A Matter of Trust, strongly challenges the Bush administration's integrity. "Evidence is growing that the Bush administration has misled the public. But most voters, so far, are inclined to forgive." Interesting not just in itself, but also as a potential harbinger; the London-based Economist often has a clearer view of U.S. politics than more local media. If Bush truly loses the trust of the voters, he's in trouble.
Did you see this? Microsoft and Sun resolve their differences. This is just Sun being pragmatic, I think; their business is failing, and they needed the $1.6B Microsoft is paying them to settle. I agree with this analysis on MSNBC. Sun is cutting 3,300 jobs and announced their quarterly loss will be wider than anticipated.
Wow, South Korea is paying parents to have children. I wonder from which part of their society these mercenary parents will be drawn? I predict this will lower their average IQ in a big hurry. (Talk about Unnatural Selection!) A great sociobiological experiment; it will be interesting to watch. [ via razib ]
NASA has announced that Gravity Probe B is read for launch! This cool project, designed to verify Einstein's General Theory of Relativity, features the most accurate gyroscopes ever built. "The experiment will check, very precisely, tiny changes in the direction of spin of four gyroscopes contained in an Earth satellite orbiting at 400-mile altitude directly over the poles. They will measure how space and time are warped by the presence of the Earth, and, more profoundly, how the Earth's rotation drags space-time around with it."
Scientific American has a fascinating article about flexible organic displays. "Light-emitting organic materials offer brighter and more efficient displays than LEDs. And you'll be able to unroll them across a tabletop." Sounds perfect for virtual microscopy :) [ via John Robb ]
So, I'm working with some colleagues in the Aperio lab; we're filming a ScanScope in action. Greg Crandall had brought in an old VCR, but he'd forgotten the remote control. This VCR has a minimum of front-panel controls, we're dead. Or are we? Suddenly Mark Wrenn whips out his trusty Sony Clie, which has a universal remote program built in. He selects Panasonic, and poof! we're in business. Awesome!
Dave Winer re-linked Courtney Love's June, 2000 article about the math behind "big music". I remember reading it at the time; this was right when Napster was going great guns, and the music industry began its ongoing slide into oblivion. After four years it still strikes home. And the RIAA still doesn't get it.
This is too funny: Molvania, a land untouched by modern dentistry. "Molvanian is a difficult language to speak, let alone master. There are four genders: male, female, neutral, and the collective noun for cheeses, which occupies a nominative sub-section of its very own." I am not making this up, but they are :) [ via Jane Galt ]