Sunday, September 24, 2006
Also, Mark Fiore's political animations are very good...For Germ, I bring up Galaxy High School in the 80's...
And of course Genndy Tartakovsky's Dexter's Laboratory on Cartoon Network...
Also on Cartoon Network for their Adult Swim segments is Robot Chicken...I also like the VH1 Illustrated show...
New Experiments strike a blow to Time Travel
by Laura Wright
>>It has always been a question that man has pondered, time travel...My universe is intact knowing that Einstein was right about special relativity...It's enough that we have to relearn the planets...
Three years ago, researchers created a light pulse that appeared to defy nature's fundamental speed limit—it traveled faster than the speed of light in a vacuum. If it were possible to transmit information at such speeds, Einstein's theory of relativity would be in tatters, and the principle of causality—the idea that cause must always come before effect—would go out the window. With a faster-than-light telephone, you could place a call back in time and tell your parents not to conceive you, for example. Now physicists (and everyone vexed by time-travel paradoxes) can breathe a sigh of relief. A recent series of experiments by experimental physicist Dan Gauthier of Duke University confirm that the earlier result was a kind of illusion; information cannot outrun light's fastest pace. The ruckus began in 2000, when physicist Lijun Wang of the NEC Research Institute in Princeton, New Jersey, and his colleagues beamed a pulse of light through a chamber filled with a cloud of cesium atoms and recorded how long it took for the light to emerge from the other side. In apparent disregard for Einstein's physics, the light pulse exited the chamber before the researchers saw it enter. When the peak of the light pulse entered the chamber, the different waves that made up the pulse split apart, each changing in both wavelength and frequency. As the waves exited the chamber, they recombined to form a peak identical to the one that Wang saw enter the chamber a split second later. The waves behaved as though they'd been stretched and hurled forward in time, with the gas in the chamber acting like a slingshot. But the waves had not really broken any rules—only their shape had changed. And yet, because at least part of the waves had traveled faster than the speed of light, Wang claimed that light's speed limit wasn't immutable after all.
His claims would have come as no surprise to Einstein, were he alive today. In the early part of the 20th century, Einstein worried that experiments might someday be developed to challenge the limit of the speed of light. Concerned about the paradoxes that might arise if things could travel so fast that cause and effect might be reversed, he and his cronies came up with the revised theory of special relativity, which states that no mass, pulse of information, or energy can travel faster than the speed of light. But nobody was really sure how this revised theory would affect the speed limit of a simple wave.
Wang had not claimed to have transmitted information faster than light. In fact, physicists had never clocked the maximum speed of an information-carrying beam of light. Nevertheless, many popular news stories described Wang's work as a challenge to Einstein, and many physicists also had a hard time understanding how a beam of light could escape a test chamber before it entered. "We were intrigued by the results and wondered if we could figure out how to measure the speed of information," Gauthier says.
Gauthier and his student Michael Stenner, along with Mark Neifeld of the University of Arizona, devised an experiment much like Wang's, using light pulses moving through a gas of potassium atoms. As expected, the light pulses appeared to move at faster-than-light velocities. Gauthier's real goal was clocking how fast information could travel to a given location, so he and his colleagues imprinted a simple signal on the pulse—two discontinuities that could represent the one and zero of a binary code—and watched to see when the signals came out of the chamber. Whereas Wang observed the wave peak, Gauthier focused on the wave front, the first photon of the imprinted signal on the pulse, reasoning that if the wave front did not travel faster than the speed of light, then no information within the pulse could, either. "You can have the peak of the pulse traveling faster, so it catches up," Gauthier explains. "But you can't make the pulse go faster than that very first moment."
The experiments, published in the October 16 issue of Nature, revealed that the first photon of the changed pulse inched up to the maximum speed of light but did not surpass it, even though subsequent peaks within the pulse gained on the wave front at faster-than-light speeds. The elaborate series of tests all boiled down to a simple conclusion: As usual, Einstein had been right all along.
by Larry Magid
Broadcasters, musicians and serious audiophiles have long been consumers of high-end portable audio gear, but podcasting has created an expanded market for this equipment. While it is possible to create a podcast with nothing more than a computer, a microphone and some audio-editing software, there are times when it’s nice to be able to conduct interviews, gather sound or record programs when away from a PC. For that you’ll need some type of portable recording equipment.
Until a few years ago that would probably have been a portable analog cassette tape recorder. More recently, it might have been a MiniDisc recorder or digital audio tape recorder. But today, the hottest recorders do not use tape or discs but record to the same type of nonvolatile flash memory used in digital cameras.
Flash has no moving parts to make noise while you record, and it is compact. An SD flash card, not much bigger than a postage stamp, can hold as much as four gigabytes or up to 130 hours of compressed monaural audio (some recorders, however, do not work with SD cards that store more than two gigabytes). Compact Flash cards can store up to eight gigabytes.
Also, data on a memory card can be easily transferred to a PC or a Mac with a U.S.B. cable or by removing the card from the device and putting it in a PC card reader. Once on a PC, the file can be edited, e-mailed or posted to a server. Because these audio files start out as digital, there is no need to convert them for use on a computer. That saves time and avoids the loss of quality inherent in “dubbing” from one device to another.
There is one drawback. Although flash memory has come down in price substantially over the last couple of years, it remains more expensive per minute of audio than tape or MiniDiscs. That is usually not a problem if you copy the files to a PC, but it can be if you are away from a computer for an extended period or need to deliver a copy of the file in a physical format. Still, with 256-megabyte SD cards selling for as little as $12, it is not all that expensive to carry around extra cards.
Sound quality depends, in part, on the format you use to record. For maximum quality, the higher-end devices can record uncompressed files in the WAV format, but such files take up as much as 10 megabytes a minute for stereo sound. If you are recording speech or music that you are likely to listen to on a portable player like an iPod, you can save a great deal of space by recording as a compressed MP3 file. MP3 is a “lossy” compression, which means some degradation of quality.
There are basically three types of digital flash recorders on the market. There are digital voice recorders like the Olympus VN-3100PC ($69) that are mostly used for dictation and other voice-recording tasks. Also, some digital music players, like the iRiver T30 ($40 for the 512-megabyte model), have recording abilities, and there are accessories for the iPod like the TuneTalk Stereo for iPod ($69) from Belkin.
While those can be used for podcasts, the sound quality and versatility will not be as good as the higher-end dedicated systems like the Marantz PMD 660 ($499), the Edirol by Roland R-09 ($399) and the M-Audio MicroTrack 24/96 ($350).
>>From the review, I have found the Edirol to be the most compelling...
Saturday, September 23, 2006
He plays some of Soundwalk (a 3 disk set, one of baseball, one of hiphop, and the other of graffiti meant to be a walking tour) from the graff one...and also a lot of great heads that I especially enjoyed like an old Detroit house guy named CosmoFlex from the early 90's (wonder where he is now) and BusDriver. I'd also like to give a shoutout to those people who showed great love for Billy and me today, Jason from East New York and that PATH train worker who gave me a break on a Metrocard...
Friday, September 22, 2006
By Ian James, Associated Press
Wed. Sept 13, 2006
CARACAS, Venezuela - One is a Cold War icon who has defied the United States for nearly a half-century. The other is a charismatic ex-military man who could be Washington's biggest Latin American nemesis for years to come...Chavez and his mentor Castro have markedly different styles, but their friendship ensures Cuba critical economic support with a bonanza of Venezuelan oil and credit.
Some who know the 52-year-old Venezuelan predict he will continue to promote Castro's beliefs, challenging U.S. hopes that the Cuban leader's illness will spur democratic change in the communist country...astro and Chavez are united by what they call a crusade against U.S. dominance of Latin America and unbridled capitalism that is driving the world to ruin. A personal connection feeds their ideological closeness.
At Castro's bedside in Cuba recently, Chavez lovingly grasped the hand of the man he says he sees as a father. "He's like the father of all the revolutionaries of our America. He's the lighthouse that lights the paths," Chavez said in one of his marathon speeches that, like Castro's, often run for hours. Castro has designated his younger brother Raul as his eventual successor, but in many ways Chavez has already assumed Castro's role as Latin America's biggest challenge to the U.S. government.
On the economic front, Cuba's trade with Venezuela is booming. Venezuela has helped Cuba defy a U.S. trade embargo, partly supplanting Soviet subsidies that dried up in the early 1990s.
Venezuela predicts trade with Cuba will reach $1.8 billion this year, including shipments of some 98,000 barrels of oil a day sold under preferential terms including deferred payment. Meanwhile, thousands of Cuban doctors are treating poor Venezuelans for free.
"Chavez is a major factor in what's going to happen in Cuba from now on," said Larry Birns, of the Washington-based Council on Hemispheric Affairs. "He essentially has rendered Castro and Castroism immune to any kind of U.S. action unless the U.S. is prepared to threaten its oil supply and begin a diplomatic conflagration in the Caribbean."
Chavez says Venezuelan troops would help defend Cuba against any U.S. invasion.
He has followed Castro's health closely since Cuba announced July 31 that Fidel was temporarily ceding power to his brother after the surgery.
And Chavez increasingly adopts ideas and phrases coined by Castro, including his common exclamation "Fatherland or death!" However, Chavez, unlike the more agnostic Castro, often expounds on links between Jesus Christ and socialism.
Other differences are more obvious.
Venezuela's brand of socialism, which Chavez calls the Bolivarian Revolution, remains a far cry from the communism Castro installed after the revolution toppled dictator Fulgencio Batista in 1959.
While Cuba maintains its single-party political system, Chavez — first elected in 1998 — is running for re-election in a multiparty system.
And while Chavez opponents accuse him of being an autocrat, much of Venezuela's news media remain virulently anti-Chavez. Private businesses continue to drive the Venezuelan economy, despite an increasing state role.
Chavez says the "21st century socialism" he's building will not fit a Cuban blueprint.
He also has praised Cuba as a "revolutionary democracy" with direct citizen participation at the grass-roots level, and he says Castro assures him Cuba's socialist system will live on.
On a Sept. 1 visit to Cuba, Chavez invoked Castro's traditional call to arms as a TV camera rolled: "Hasta la victoria siempre! Venceremos!" — "Toward victory always! We will prevail!"
Castro, visibly moved, repeated the words with gusto...
Chavez takes on Bush during UN trip
NEW YORK - Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez came to New York this week without a prepared speech but with a firm conviction he would address the United Nations without reservations or omissions.
The word he chose to describe President Bush — "the devil" — stirred controversy and some sharp reactions, but Chavez said Thursday that he stood by that term. "Sometimes the devil takes the form of people," Chavez told hundreds of supporters in a church in Harlem. He called the war in Iraq and said Bush is a "sick man."
It was classic Chavez: frank, uncensored and irreverent. Some observers, such as the Rev. Jesse Jackson, suggested both Chavez and the Bush administration both ought to calm their rhetoric and avoid name-calling. But Chavez accused the U.S. of keeping his doctors and his security chief from coming to New York by not granting them visas. "They're attempts to persuade me not to come, because some people would like for me not to come, but I come. I come to say what I think must be said," Chavez said. The Venezuelan has said he did not prepare a script for his speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday, but rather went in with ideas and spoke spontaneously, as is his custom.
Chavez described himself Thursday as a friend of the American people, and announced Venezuela would boost sales of discounted heating oil to poor Americans. But, he insisted, "we're enemies of imperialism" — his shorthand for the Bush administration.
>>I think President Chavez was fully in his right to say whatever he wanted to about the United States and the President especially since he was on a UN tour and had been denied of visas for his staff...He joins the ranks of George Lucas who released the Star wars trilogy in time with Bush's presidency on purpose...Harlem embraced Chavez and he in turn gave heating oil to their neighborhood...What's new with people thinking badly of Bush? I think it is important for leaders of countries to give heartfelt and honest critiques of one another in case they think that someone is not doing a good job...After all, who else could do that and cause such a controversy that hopefully will promote change? Otherwise, they would just bare their teeth and grin through being a "politician"...
Saturday, September 16, 2006
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Added 5/12/08...Spitzer has proven that his voracious sexual appetite for high-paid prostitutes will get him out of office quick and will also humiliate him, especially in front of all his enemies made as a lawyer, in the process. It is too bad I was so taken in by his seemingly honest campaign slogans. Now that Hilary is in the running for President, and putting up quite a stubborn dragging of the feet, I can only say that she really isn't thinking of what's best for the Dems, she's thinking of herself...Not the kind of candidate I'd like to see, not that she was doing such a good job for New York anyway...
Dan Nystedt, IDG News Service-MacCentral
The file transfer service BitTorrent plans to open an online movie store to sell foreign films and other hard to find video, including content from China, Japan and India.
The service will not compete with other movie download sites such as the Unbox store launched by Amazon.com last week, nor Apple’s iTunes, both of which offer mainstream shows. Instead, BitTorrent plans to market content users want but have a hard time finding, such as Bollywood movies and shows based on Japanese manga comics...The service will launch in the U.S. by the end of this year, and could help open up the country to foreign film and TV shows. Outside of larger cities in the U.S., foreign content is hard to find, requiring many people to download such content from the Internet...
Rex Farrance, PCWorld
Over the past five decades, hard drives have come a long way. Travel through time with us as we chronicle 50 milestones in hard-drive development--from product firsts to new technologies, and everything in between.
1956: IBM ships the first hard drive, the RAMAC 305, which holds 5MB of data at $10,000 a megabyte. It is as big as two refrigerators and uses 50 24-inch platters. (For the full story and interviews with key players, read "The Hard Drive Turns 50.")
1961: IBM invents heads for disk drives that "fly" on a cushion of air or on "air bearings."
1963: IBM comes up with the first removable hard drive, the 1311, which has six 14-inch platters and holds 2.6MB.
1966: IBM introduces the first drive using a wound-coil ferrite recording head.
1970: General Digital Corporation (renamed Western Digital in 1971) is founded in California.
1973: IBM announces the 3340, the first modern "Winchester" hard drive, which has a sealed assembly, lubricated spindles, and low-mass heads.
1978: First RAID (Redundant Arrays of Independent Disks) technology patent is filed. (Read "How to Buy a Hard Drive: Key Features" for a description of this technology.)
1979: A group headed by Al Shugart founds disk-drive manufacturer Seagate Technology. 1979: IBM's 3370 uses seven 14-inch platters to store 571MB, the first drive to use thin-film heads.
1979: IBM's 62 PC, "Piccolo," uses six 8-inch platters to store 64MB.
1979: Seagate introduces the ST-506 drive and interface, which is then used in all early microcomputer implementations.
1980: IBM introduces the first gigabyte hard drive. It is the size of a refrigerator, weighs about 550 pounds, and costs $40,000.
1980: Seagate releases the first 5.25-inch hard disk.
1981: Shugart Associates joins NCR to develop an intelligent disk drive interface called the Shugart Associates Systems Interface (SASI), a predecessor to SCSI (Small Computer System Interface).
1982: Western Digital announces the first single-chip Winchester hard drive controller (WD1010).
1983: Rodime releases the first 3.5-inch hard drive; the RO352 includes two platters and stores 10MB.
1984: Western Digital makes the first Winchester hard drive controller card for the IBM PC/AT--and sets an industry standard.
1985: Control Data, Compaq Computer, and Western Digital collaborate to develop the 40-pin IDE interface. IDE stands for Intelligent Drive Electronics, more commonly known as Integrated Drive Electronics.
1985: Imprimis integrates the first hard drive controller into a drive.
1985: Quantum introduces the Plus Hardcard, which allows the addition of a hard drive without an available bay or a separate controller card.
1985: Western Digital produces the first ESDI (Enhanced Small Device Interface) controller board, which allows larger capacity and faster hard drives to be used in PCs.
1986: The official SCSI spec is released; Apple Computer's Mac Plus is one of the first computers to use it.
1988: Prairie Tek releases the 220, the first 2.5-inch hard drive designed for the burgeoning notebook computer market; it uses two platters to store 20MB.
1988: Connor introduces the first 1-inch-high 3.5-inch hard drive, which is still the common form factor. Before this, hard drives were either full height or half-height.
1988: Western Digital buys the disk-drive assets of Tandon Corporation with an eye to manufacturing IDE drives.
1990: Western Digital introduces its first 3.5-inch Caviar IDE hard drive.
1991: IBM introduces the 0663 Corsair, the first disk drive with thin film magnetoresistive (MR) heads. It has eight 3.5-inch platters and stores 1GB. (The MR head was first introduced on an IBM tape drive in 1984.)
1991: Integral Peripherals' 1820 Mustang uses one 1.8-inch platter to store 21MB.
1992: Seagate comes out with the first shock-sensing 2.5-inch hard drive.
1992: Seagate is first to market with a 7200-revolutions-per-minute hard drive, the 2.1GB Barracuda.
1992: Hewlett-Packard's C3013A Kitty Hawk drive uses two 1.3-inch platters to store 2.1GB.
1994: Western Digital develops Enhanced IDE, an improved hard drive interface that breaks the 528MB-throughput barrier. EIDE also allows for attachment of optical and tape drives.
1996: IBM stores 1 billion bits per square inch on a platter.
1996: Seagate introduces its Cheetah family, the first 10,000-rpm hard drives.
1997: IBM introduces the first drive using giant magneto resistive (GMR) heads, the 16.8GB Deskstar 16GP Titan, which stores 16.8GB on five 3.5-inch platters.
1998: IBM announces its Microdrive, the smallest hard drive to date. It fits 340MB on a single 1-inch platter.
2000: Maxtor buys competitor Quantum's hard drive business. At the time, Quantum is the number-two drive maker, behind Seagate; this acquisition makes Maxtor the world's largest hard drive manufacturer.
2000: Seagate produces the first 15,000-rpm hard drive, the Cheetah X15.
2002: Seagate scores another first with the Barracuda ATA V Serial ATA hard drive.
2002: A demonstration by Seagate yields a perpendicular magnetic recording areal density of 100 gigabits per square inch.
2002: Among its many 2002 technology accomplishments, Seagate successfully demos Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording. HAMR records magnetically using laser-thermal assistance and ultimately aims to increase areal density by more than 100 times over 2002 levels.
2003: IBM sells its Data Storage Division to Hitachi, thus ending its involvement in developing and marketing disk drive technology.
2003: Western Digital introduces the first 10,000-rpm SATA hard drive, the 37GB Raptor, which is designed for the enterprise, but which gamers quickly learn is a hot desktop performer in dual-drive RAID setups.
2004: The first 0.85-inch hard drive, Toshiba's MK2001MTN, debuts. It stores 2GB on a single platter.
2005: Toshiba introduces its MK4007 GAL, which stores 40GB on one 1.8-inch platter, fielding the first hard drive using perpendicular magnetic recording.
2006: Seagate completes the acquisition of Maxtor, further narrowing the field of hard drive manufacturers.
2006: Seagate's Momentus 5400.3 notebook hard drive is the first 2.5-inch model to use perpendicular magnetic recording, which boosts its capacity up to 160GB.
2006: Seagate releases the Barracuda 7200.10, at 750GB the largest hard drive to date.
2006: Western Digital launches its 10,000-rpm Raptor X SATA hard drive, boosting its capacity to 150GB and placing a flashy transparent window that allows specially designed computer cases to showcase its inner workings.
2006: Cornice and Seagate each announce a 1-inch hard drive that holds 12GB. The drives are slated to ship in the third quarter of 2006.
>>An example of military technology made for public consumption that has been beneficial for progress...The question really is has humanity made that much progress with our ever-increasing technology?