March 2010

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

‘Wake up, gentlemen’, world’s top bankers warned by former Fed chairman Volcker

Times Online: “‘I wish someone would give me one shred of neutral evidence that financial innovation has led to economic growth …’”


Motivation by anticipation: Expecting rapid feedback enhances performance

Science Daily: “Furthermore, when students expected to receive their grades quickly, they predicted that their performance would be worse than students who were to receive feedback later.”


Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Toyota’s Recall Woes May Have Started in Space “This issue has been extensively researched in the military and aerospace sectors but has been largely unexplored by automakers”


Saturday, 27 March 2010

The Last Temptation of Risk

Barry Eichengreen: “But another view, considerably closer to the truth, is that the problem lay not so much with the poverty of the underlying theory as with selective reading of it—a selective reading shaped by the social milieu.”


Thursday, 25 March 2010

Pwn2Own winner tells Apple, Microsoft to find their own bugs

Computerworld: “True, [the software] gets incrementally better, but they actually need to make big improvements. But I can’t make them do that.”


Neptune may have eaten a planet and stolen its moon

New Scientist


Art of the Steal: On the Trail of World’s Most Ingenious Thief

Wired: “Blanchard says that he could have escaped from jail again, but there was no point.”


Remembering the future: Our brain saves energy by predicting what it will see “However, if you were to walk in to your office one day and see someone totally unexpected sitting in your chair - the Prime Minister, for example, your brain would have to work harder to process the same scene.”


My speech at The Economist (on innovation)

Scott Berkun: “Occam’s razor suggests the main barrier to innovation are simple cultural things we overlook because we like to believe we’re so advanced. But mostly, we’re not.”


Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Palestinians increasingly back 1-state

Jerusalem Post: “The Israeli and Palestinian definitions of a two state solution are very different. Whenever we ask this question, the idea of a two state solution is strongly supported but only if the border is the 1967 border and refugees are given the right of return. So the question is not whether or not people support a two-state solution, but what type of two state solution?”


Microsoft and Creative Destruction

Scott Berkun: “A case study on Vista, MSN Search, Microsoft Bob, The Tablet PC, etc. should be produced by an outside consultant, and stapled on the forehead of every manager at the company, once a day, until they read them all word for word. Then they’d take advantage of Microsoft’s so called experience and wisdom. Otherwise, they are being set up to make the same expensive mistakes again and again.”


GOP Rolls Out Last-Ditch Efforts to Stop Health Care Bill

CBS News: “There is an obscure Senate rule that says the Senate cannot conduct hearings after 2 p.m. without unanimous consent, so Republicans opted to withhold their consent, the Hill reports.”


Make It Count

Talking Points Memo: “The Democrats won that battle because they said to themselves and the country: on this ground we’re willing to lose.”


Monday, 22 March 2010

Democrats face dubious voters on healthcare

Reuters: “Democrats in Congress who passed historic legislation on Sunday to revamp the U.S. healthcare system face a new challenge over the next seven months: convincing voters it’s a good deal.” – Is this an admission from Reuters that they aren’t even going to try to do their job?


Saturday, 20 March 2010

Romneycare Watch: Relative Autonomy of the Republican Party

Grasping Reality with Tractor Beams: “The fact that the American people don’t think that it is a moderate, consensus-oriented bill is because you–that is, you journalists–are simply not doing your jobs.”


Friday, 19 March 2010

Maryland Trying To Secede From The South

The Huffington Post: “Recent attempts to update the state song, ‘Maryland, My Maryland,’ – which describes the occupation as ‘the despot’s heel upon thy shore’ and includes the mention of ‘Northern scum’ – have failed.”


2 Senators Offer Immigration Overhaul “require all workers in the United States to carry a biometric identity card”


Thursday, 18 March 2010

Andy Stern: ‘We need to make ourselves more involved in these people’s career planning’

Ezra Klein: “But the third rail that’s being discussed today is whether if you have two candidates, a Democrat and a Republican who are both representing insurers, whether you’d run a candidate representing reform. That line has never been crossed by major groups like unions. But we’re crossing it now.”


Mike Pence’s confused response to the CBO report

Ezra Klein: “And only in Washington can such willful obtuseness be considered a professional attribute.”


Distributed Version Control is here to stay, baby

Joel on Software: “With distributed version control, the distributed part is actually not the most interesting part. The interesting part is that these systems think in terms of changes, not in terms of versions.”


CBO: Health-care reform bill cuts deficit by $1.3 trillion over 20 years, covers 95%

Ezra Klein: “The bill will cost $940 billion over the first 10 years and reduce the deficit by $130 billion during that period. In the second 10 years – so, 2020 to 2029 – it will reduce the deficit by $1.2 trillion.” – full score here


Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Google is wardriving

codeblog: “I implemented the location-of-your-wifi API quickly, so I could terrify myself further.”


A daylight savings time confession

Marginal Revolution: “Central planning of time!”


Monday, 15 March 2010

“Making Sense of Privacy and Publicity”

danah boyd: “While there’s a lot we don’t know about behavioral and articulated networks, we do know that they are NOT the same as personal networks.”


Saturday, 13 March 2010

The Twilight of the Elites

TIME: “This is the danger of living in a society in which the landscape of authority has been leveled: it’s not there when you actually need it.”


Friday, 5 March 2010

In China, Wal-Mart presses suppliers on labor, environmental standards “‘For those who may still be on the sidelines, I want to be direct,’ Wal-Mart chief executive Lee Scott said sternly. ‘Meeting social and environmental standards is not optional.’”


Five Ways to Heal American Capitalism

Harvard Business Review: “This will encourage senior executives to break the habit of giving guidance and, by extension, of manipulating numbers to hit their guidance numbers. They can get back to the psychologically rewarding business of actually creating value.”


Thursday, 4 March 2010

The full-scale collapse: From Murrow to Blitzer

Glenn Greenwald: “Edward R. Murrow led the media attack on the McCarthyism of the 1950s.  Wolf Blitzer plays mindless, amiable, neutral, amplifying host to identical smear campaigns of today.  That collapse says all one needs to know about much of modern establishment political journalism in the United States.”


Pigeons Beat Humans at Solving ‘Monty Hall’ Problem

LiveScience – just what we need: pigeons that can apply Bayes’ rule.


Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Emanuel and his ‘advisers’

David S. Broder: “From too many years of covering politics, I have come to believe as Axiom One that the absolute worst advice politicians ever receive comes from journalists who fancy themselves great campaign strategists.”


Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Chilean quake may have shortened Earth days

Chilean quake may have shortened Earth days: “Earth’s figure axis is not the same as its north-south axis; they are offset by about 10 meters (about 33 feet).”


Working memory: Is it the new IQ?

Nature Precedings: “Critically, we find that working memory at the start of formal education is a more powerful predictor of subsequent academic success than IQ.”


I’m back. I’m home! All the time, it was… We finally really did it.


Monday, 1 March 2010

‘Good’ Beats ‘Innovative’ Nearly Every Time

Scott Berkun: “If you insist on doing something new, take this advice: Start with the important problems your customers, or your competitors’ customers, have and try to solve them.”