Monday, September 22, 2014

Botnetters of the world unite! You have nothing to lose but your chains. - What I am reading 9/22/2014

#FeynmanLectureChallenge - Last week was super busy so I got nothing done on the lecture challenge, but that is exactly why I built the buffer in.  Not that it matters given that I am the only person participating.  I may double up this week to get caught up.

Endgadget - IKEA's taking its low-cost solar panels to eight more countries -

More power to them.  I am not against sustainable / green development per se, but I do think market forces should drive it otherwise it is doomed to failure.  I do think that even given the current shale oil boom we should still be migrate off fossil fuels where it makes sense.  I think Hydro / Nuclear are the way to go but solar and wind can play a part too.

Speaking of shale oil:

Reason - Is the Shale Revolution a 'Ponzi Scheme' or the End of Peak Oil? -
The shale bubble proponents essentially are betting on the EIA low production scenario. They will be proven right if shale oil production does peak in the next year or two. We shall soon see. "The history of the industry is that we are always running out," says Budzik. "So long as we have a well functioning economic system that allows the price mechanism to adjust and encourages innovation we will see the resource base grow rather than diminish." Rising prices at the beginning of the 21st century did, in fact, promote more exploration and faster technological progress, resulting in the shale revolution the U.S. is currently enjoying. If this dynamic is not unduly hampered, it's a good bet that the prophets of bubble-bursting doom are wrong yet again.
I wrote about this years ago, there is enough fossil fuel resources in the US to last us, at our current rate of consumption, for a 1000 years.  We just have to want to use it badly enough.

Wired - MIT Students Battle State’s Demand for Their Bitcoin Miner’s Source Code -
The mining tool, known as Tidbit, was developed in late 2013 by Rubin and his classmates for the Node Knockout hackathon—only Rubin is identified on the subpoena but his three classmates are identified on the hackathon web site as Oliver Song, Kevin King and Carolyn Zhang. The now defunct tool was designed to offer web site visitors an alternative way to support the sites they visited by using their computers to mine Bitcoins for them in exchange for having online ads removed.
Wired attempts to draw a parallel between this case and Aaron Swartz, but based on what I read, I can already see a bunch of differences.  What this looks like to me is a bunch of college kids came up with a way to get website owners to install a bot for them rather than having to do it surreptitiously and then they were planning on using unsuspecting visitors GPU power to mine bitcoin.  Being MIT students they were clever enough to come up with a half-assed justification.

Endgadget - Xprize's next big challenge: software that lets kids teach themselves -

May I suggest "The Diamond Age" as an inspiration.

The Register - Moon landing was real and WE CAN PROVE IT, says Nvidia -
For the moon lander analysis, the researchers looked over the original footage and noticed the reflection from Neil Armstrong's space-suit, showing up as a bright spot of light that moved with the camera. Putting the characteristics of the space-suit into their analysis the researchers were able to reproduce the conditions they say led to Aldrin being so apparently-anomalously well-illuminated in the photo.
Math Bitches!

YouTube - Reporter says "Fuck it! I quit" on air -

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