Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Amazing Cover of Stand By Me

This cover of Stand By Me was recorded by completely unknown artists in a street virtual studio all around the world. It all started with a base track—vocals and guitar—recorded on the streets of Santa Monica, California:


Playing For Change | Song Around The World "Stand By Me" from Concord Music Group on Vimeo.

WOW.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Used PC Wanted:

I'm looking to track down a used PC for a good friend with C.P. at our apartments. Anyone looking to unload an XP/100Gig HD/1Gig RAM/2+Ghz/128+ Graphics Card/DVD/CD-RW?

His budget is a couple hundred. I'm keeping a keen eye on Craigslist as well. Let me know if you have any leads.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Sex with Robots: How Humanity is Screwing Itself

That's a title that will get attention. It's a perfectly ironic title of an article from Live Science.

I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I was writing an ethics paper on the use of cybernetic technology to increase human cognitive capacities.

If you want, scan through the article, but I'm going to highlight the relevant points here for my paper.

  • A few weeks ago I was chatting with my room mate envisioning a not to distant future where current technology would be further fused to our being. I see the progression as being from accessing the internet at a hub (desktop) to an every present access in the palm of your hands to, well, something a little more intrinsic. The article has a nice anecdote to convey the gist: "You're already paying per month to access that growing cloud of stuff you care about. And you've become a slave to charging batteries and synchronizing platforms. You're already adorned in wearable devices. Next step for you: implanted ones. Our very human need to "always be on top of things" powerfully pushes us in the direction of robotic enhancement. It's precisely what drove your grandparents to buy that first TV."
  • "If you have virtually limitless entertainment everywhere you are, why would you ever go anywhere at all?" This reminds me of a Star Trek TNG Episode (The Game) and was also alluded to in a scene of Children of Men giving a glimpse into the lives of the elite in a not to distant dystopian earth scenario.
  • "So the root question becomes: Will we be able to impart ambition and curiosity into Hubot Roboman?" The issue of ambition and curiosity is an excellent starting point for defining what it means to be human.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Future of the Browser

Yet again I had a brilliant idea (the iTunes-esque unified media browser) only to be brought to fruition by someone else, this time by the folks at Mozilla (Firefox). I'm proud to say this time I had documented evidence and was nearly two months ahead. :P

Back to writing papers and online quizzes.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

I thought Serrano Peppers were hot...

I start sweating just thinking about the burrito I ate with the single mystery pepper that some kids from my apartments sold me. Turned out it was a Serrano pepper ranked at 25,000 on the Scoville scale. 5x's the level of a Jalapeno.

A woman in India just set the new world record for eating the hottest peppers. The chili peppers known as "ghost chili" that she consumed rank 1,000,000 on the Scoville! And she ate 51 in 2 minutes. To top it off, her victory dance consisted of rubbing them in her eyes.

That's My King! Do You Know Him?

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Job Hunting, Marriage, and Cyborgs

I acknowledge the complete void of personal narrative in my blogging the last few months. Life has been a whirl-wind of wedding planning (I'm pretty proud of the work I've done on the blog for our wedding; just click the link), academics (Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology, History), working (hanging out and sometimes imparting knowledge with a bunch of awesome kindergarten-5th graders), and loving on my neighbors in Rockwood (consists of weekly community meals, youth parties, and just being friends).

Elena and I are both being intentionally in stepping back from commitments this term in order to not be burnt out by our June 14th wedding date. Our premarital mentors have been awesome and have continued to give us the opportunity and encouragement to seek both the reality and beauty of marriage. Part of this reality has catapulted me into a full fledge job hunt. My current job does not run through the summer and I will be finishing my undergraduate degree within the next 6 months. I set a lofty goal last week to submit a resume a day. I'm hoping this will prove to be fruitful.

I didn't only put Cyborgs in the title to catch your attention. I have decided to write my Ethics term paper on the use of cybernetic technology to increase human cognitive capacities. I am particularly fascinated by this topic because of it's tendency to create a knee jerk response as abominable and unnatural (even for myself) where as there many equally "abominable and unnatural" technologies that we casually engage with and embrace without thinking twice. If I have time, I will blog through the different elements of the paper and any articles I find online that relate.

Last personal tid-bit. Four months ago I started by complete read through of the Bible. It has been an awesome journey of discovering completely new pieces of Scripture and providing a much more solid framework of Scripture to operate within for daily life. Yesterday I just finished 2 Samuel (which I liked much better then the 1st). I will become "even more undignified than this..."

Did You Know?

Props to my sister for showing me this one.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

P.U.M.A.

Stands for "Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility". It's a just unveiled experimental design from an unlikely partnership between General Motors and Segway.

Some particularly interesting numbers: Top speed of 35 mph, 35 mile range, and costs 35 cents to charge.
Autoblog and Engadget both have information and videos galore.

I'm not going to lie; I often experience strong waves of jealousy during my 15 minute walk from the MAX to PSU when an electric wheel chair zooms past. This bad boy might give me the edge:

Sunday, April 05, 2009

C.O.M.C.A.S.T.

New Comcast commercial. You either hate it or love it:


I think it is brilliant.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Angry British Residents Have Face-Off With Google Street View Car

I thought this was relevant after my post last night

What is your opinion? Is Street View worth the intrusion of privacy? Is it a slippery slope towards something worse?

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Google Street View

Elena and I just had a eerie Google Street View moment.

She couldn't remember the address on a house but knew the general area. So we plugged in a nearby intersection and went hunting for the house in Street View. As we approached the vicinity we noticed something that caught us by suprise in front of the house:

View Larger Map

In case you don't know, Elena drives a blue Toyota Corolla - in fact, that exact Corolla (we even verified with the parking passes on the back windshield). Besides that eerie reminder of the age we live in, street view served it's purpose perfectly and we were able to nail down the house address. :P