Dwayne Phillips ' Day Book

Items I happen to view each day. Science, Techonology, Management, Culture, and of course Writing

This is my day book for this week. I have modeled this after science fiction and computer writer Jerry Pournelle's view, or as he calls it, his Day Book. I encourage you to see Jerry Pournelle's site and subscribe to his services.

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This week: February March 26-April 1, 2012

Summary of this week:

Monday - Tuesday - Wednesday - Thursday - Friday - Saturday - Sunday

Monday March 26, 2012

Sign in services from Google and Facebook have security holes in them. I am (NOT) sure that national electronic health records won't have these security flaws.

Movie director James Cameron became the first person to make a solo dive to the bottom of the Mariana Trench. Good for him. I have no desire to sink a perfectly good boat.

Women in tech: how about diversity in tech and all other endeavors?

Chinese hardware companies are being blocked from national broadband networks in Australia and the U.S. I find those to be wise decisions.

You can buy all the Harry Potter movies in a 31-disc set. I cannot imagine any fan wanting to watch the first movie (or two). It was awful. As time passed, the franchise learned how to make movies.

For the first time in 2012, more movies will be watched streaming instead of from discs.

While the price (not the cost) of college is rising rapidly, assessments show that large percentages of college students aren't learning
much of anything.

If you hold the steering wheel of your car they way they taught you in Driver's Ed, your air bag will break or rip off your arms. Ah, high school. They ruined our lives. We were right all along.

The regulators in the Federal government are coming to our rescue again. They want to regulate the GPS displays in our cars. They know so much better than all of us who merely drive our cars safely everyday.

LogiTech is trying to move into the video conferencing arena.

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Tuesday March 27, 2012

Apple is looking to build the next generation of data centers. I don't know what that means, but the company continues to expand its services.

Take a Boeing 737, remodel the insides, and here you have it. Fly 19 people 6,000 miles in luxury. This should be the setting for a zombie or other apocolypse movie.

Bruce Schneier was invited to testify before Congress about the TSA, but the TSA complained and the invitation was revoked. Good old open government of, by, and for the people. Here is Schneier's post on the subject.

Turning the game console into a computer, Sony will add photo editing to the PlayStation 3.

The definition of success continues to change as the game Angry Birds Space has ten million downloads in three days.

Much of the actual engineering for consumer products is done in the factories in China. America is losing the ability to design let alone build anything. The only place this is NOT happening is in government classified work.

It is not just the calories; the actual food has something to do with weight. That is a side conclusion from this study that shows that people who eat chocolate a few times a week are slimmer.

Is this the cure for cancer? I haven't seen this reported in major news outlets. That means that it may actually be true.

A new method of carrying a wounded soldier. Treat him like a backpack.

Taking online classes via mobile devices.

Excellent points in this post about five things I learned in the medical field.

Excellent post from Seth Godin about comparing money with other things.

Google's Chromebooks sell in very small numbers. My suggestion is that they make it easy to install the Chrome OS on an old computer (I have a few).

There is an advantage to being young - they innovate. There is an advantage to being ignorant - they innovate. No longer young and ignorant? Just act as though you are.

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Wednesday March 28, 2012

This year Red Hat will become the first open source software company to have $1Billion in annual revenue.

The DIRNSA has pinned China with most of the military-related data theft in recent years.

And a former White House cyber advisor states that China is stealing R&D secrets from major U.S. companies.
Carnegie-Mellon researchers document the extent of Internet censorship inside the great firewall of China.

There is some art as well as science to tuning a musical instrument. Electronic tuners don't quite match that art - until now. A new algorithm claims to add the art into the science of tuning musical instruments.

The long-rumored G-Drive from Google is now rumored to be coming in April.

It seems that the sales of flat-panel televisions has reached its peak in the U.S.

There is hope for mankind. More people are learning a programming language now than ever before. The more popular languages aim at the Internet and mobile devices.

Google's I/O conference sold out in 20 minutes.

The City of Boston pays $170,000 to a man they wrongfully arrested for making a video of police. I don't understand how any public institution got the idea that it was illegal for the public to monitor public employees performing public work.

MIT researchers show that solar towers generate far more power than solar panels.

How a spammer is earning $1,000 a day through Pinterest.

OpenStreetMap, funded partly by Microsoft, may take over the market from Google Maps.

The definition of success has changed. Samsung sells five million Galaxy Note units in five months.

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Thursday March 29, 2012

This could change the world - a blind man is driving this Google-equipped car. These cars will enable people who can see but have other disabilities to drive. Mobility of the eldery and such. I hope government doesn't stand in the way.

Earl Scruggs dies at 88. He changed the banjo from a clown act to a serious musical instrument. That was not easy feat.

Novatel updates its 4G MiFi device.

Half of American households now own an Apple product. I wonder what the number was before the first iPod.

There are signs indicating that Dell may quit the smartphone market.

Barnes and Noble is moving into Germany and bringing the nook eBook reader with them.

The Raspberry Pi $35 computer hits another snag. I really want to buy one or six of these, but can't seem to do so.

A must-see video: The Boston Dynamics "Sand Flea" robot gadget jumps 30 feet up in the air.

Drinking coffee may make you less productive.

We aren't all the way there yet, but this bendable display is moving us in the right direction.

Very cool - 3D photographs that require no special hardware or glasses or such.

It seems that Apple will update its line of portable computers in April - that is next week.

Tumblr has doubled in size in the last six months.

The FBI learns about some of the nonsense that the FBI is teaching its own counter terrorism agents. And it really is a bunch of nonsense.

And the FBI admits that it will always be behind the hackers. It is a simple game of numbers and motivation. There are more hackers and they are motivated by fun, not career.

The City of Munich switched from Windows NT to Linux and is saving four million Euros a month.

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Friday March 30, 2012

There are benefits with working with people with whom you have weak ties.

The Fair Labor Association visited the Foxconn factories and found a few dozen problems. Apple thanks them and promises improvements.

So Foxconn cuts some of the "excessive" overtime hours, and the workers complain. They want the hours and the money. These are not lifetime jobs. The workers come to the city, work crazy hours for a couple of years, and go home with money.

FreedomPop - a startup that may deliver free wireless broadband. There are, of course, limits.

Google brings out version 18 of the Chrome browser.

And ever yet stronger rumors about Google's own tablet coming later this year.

American citizens are still being arrested and procesuted for photographing public employees doing their public jobs in public.

Best Buy is closing 50 stores and laying off 400 people.

Computing may change health care. The big development is the collection of biological data. Once we have data, we certiainly have enough processors to crunch on it.

Magnetic tape is still the least expensive form of data storage and it is becoming faster.

Amazon is offering refurbished Kindle Fire units for $139.

Amazon wants to build tall towers in Seattle for a headquarters. Caution, the building of a big corporate headquarters usually signals the beginning of the end.

Oooops, the California Department of Child Services has lots some disk drives containing the very personal information of about 800,000 citizens. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

A tip for advertisers: people who look at Pinterest buy the things they see.(21% of them)

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Saturday March 31, 2012

ooops, another data breach with credit card information on 10 million cards. Is everyone ready for national electronic health records?

An image of the G-Drive is leaked.

Today is World Back Up Day. Who would declare such a thing?

Build your own automated sentry (with a gun).

Opel can sell electric cars in Europe. GM cannot do the same in America.

Must see video of Arthur C. Clarke in 1974 foretelling the Internet and home computing.

A good video on coffee from the plants to the cup.

Qualcomm is making its own quad-core processor for the Windows 8 tablets coming later this year.

Mefloquine - for years it has been used to prevent malaria in Americans. The Pentagon pulled it a couple of years ago because they think it causes all sorts of bad psychotic behavor. We took that drug for two years in the mid-1990s while living in West Africa.

Cunard Cruise Lines has put iMacs in its Internet lounge. They will run Windows 7 if you wish.

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Sunday February April 1, 2012

It is April Fool's Day, so  beware. Google Maps has a Quest or "8-bit" map up today. I guess that is funny. Gizmodo has a collection of phony April Fool's products.

To avoid a long and silly court fight with the U.S. government, Apple and other publishers will settle on the eBook price fixing suit. Funny how our government gives money to failing businesses and sues succeeding businesses. There seems to be something backwards there, but what do I know?

Qualcomm is betting on portable computers (with keyboard) being lighter and thinner than iPads. Qualcomm has the quad-core processors to make them run.

This guy built a running Linux computer with a 6.5Khz (that is K as in KiloHertz) 8-bit processor and less than 256Kbytes (again a K) of memory. Wonderful.

And this guy wrote an entire book on his iPad. Why not? People used to write books on typewriters. Before that, people wrote books on paper with pen or pencil.

Wow! Google is now a graphing calculator. It is a little tough to type in the equations, but it works. Great.

A software defined radio for $11.

Most of us writers ask, "Can I be done now?" You never have to be done now. You can always be done for now.

Some people, i.e., writers, cannot work at home. They are constantly working on their house or household. Here are some tips for those people.

There is growth in the writing (publishing) world. Spurring it are eBook readers, e.g., iPad, and young adult readers, e.g., "The Hunger Games."

One writer takes a completely different approach to writing novels and produces two new books.

Johanna Rothman speaking as an editor to writers (including herself).

Seven steps to write an eBook in seven days.

Draw a map of how your fictional characters meet. Interesting idea.

A look at Pinterest for bloggers.

Do you want to write a book? Who is stopping you? Find that person and tell them to stop talking to you.

An introduction to firearms for writers who want to put some firearms in their stories. I include firearms in some of my short stories. I am a certified firearms safety instructor and have dabbled in firearms since age 18.

When and where do you write best? Learn the answers. I advise you to learn how to write well doing the opposite, too. That will make you far more flexible.

A guide to keeping a journal. I have kept a journal for about ten years now. I don't remember the actual number because I can go to my journals and read the answer. And that, saving memory, is one of the many benefits of keeping a journal.

Travelling full-time and being paid just enough to be able to afford it.

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