LHC Ad: Beware Bears

You may have noticed an ad running on scienceblogs which says “Has the LHC destoyed the Earth?” If you click on it you find a webpage that says in big letters simply “NO”. What’s up with that? Check out the webpage source for the page (http://www.hasthelhcdestroyedtheearth.com/).
Update 9/12/08: Check out the comments for more fun and also read the cat projectile analyzers take on how you can click to save the world.
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London Eye Is Falling Down Illusion

The London Eye is a gigantic tourist trap rotating wheel, which you can ride to get a great view of London. The trip takes about 30 minutes. While riding it the other day, I noticed an odd illusion. The London Eye is made up of pods which are attached to the wheel in such a way that each pod is always horizontal. What I noticed was that if you were going up on Eye and looked up and toward the top of the Eye, it felt as if the entire contraption was falling over (i.e. the top of the wheel seemed as if it was falling over.) Anyone have any idea what causes this disorienting effect?
(I suspect it must be related to the similar effect you get when staring up at the spotlight at the Luxor in Las Vegas. The spotlight goes straight up, but from below, looking up at night, it seems as if the beam of the light bends.)

Bat's Sizzling on an Open Fire

Last night we went to see the new Batman movie. After attempting to see it at Paul Allen’s Cinerama (it was sold out), we headed down to the standard mall theater in downtown Seattle to view said film. Verdit for me: meh.
But what I found interesting was thinking about the reason for why I didn’t much like the movie. This is obviously because I am not a bat nor a superhero nor a heroine nor do I live in Gotham. Plus the portrayal of Two Face just hit to close to home. See how easy it is, kids, to analyze movie reviews when you just take reviewers biases into account!
Monday’s are snarky, snark snark days.

Fraud Fighting Quantum Computers

From Founders at Work: Stories of Startups’ Early Days by Jessica Livingston, we find a gem of quantum computer’s capabilities in an interview with Max Levchin, cofounder of Paypal:

…Its one of those things where, in the end, fraud is so nondeterministic that you need a human or a quantum computer to look at it and sort of make a final decision…

Fight determinism with determinism, but fight nondeterminism with nondeterminism! I like it! But can you fight determinism with nondeterminism? Why am I now singing “I shot the nondeterminism, and the nondeterminism won?”
(I’m pretty sure Max is waxing poetic here, cus from all I’ve read about him he’s a pretty sharp cookie.)

Englishmen Alone Form Perfect Queues of Length One

Standing in lines is the bane of my existence. Okay, well maybe not, but spending time around universities certainly increases the percentage of time I spend pressing the queue. The good thing about lines in university towns is that they often move fairly fast. The bad thing is that, well, you’re standing in line. And, with a nice British last name like “Bacon,” you can bet that I’m a stickler for proper line standing. Proper? Oh yeah. Here are the offenders. Which are you?
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I Like My Facts Well Done and Humorless

The Scienceborg is all abuzz about some Sizzle movie, with all sorts of good and bad reviews, and gnashing of the teeth about whether the movie stunk or whether it was the best thing since the invention of sliced ham (few know that this event was much more important than the invention of sliced bread, which is vastly overhyped.) A good way to waste your time, I suppose, but I thought I wasn’t going to get much out of it, you known, in terms of actually getting any good insight or educational crap like that. But then I discovered Chris C. Mooney’s post on the whole thing. (Chris is lucky, he can use his middle initial. If I use mine, my initials are DMB. As in not so bright.)
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George Soros Meets Kochen-Specker

I’ll admit it: I like reading George Soros’ books. I mean, here’s a guy whose made a godzillion dollars in the financial markets, has been behind political destabilizations/stabilizations worldwide, taken on a U.S. president (can you guess which one?), and yet, in spite of this, can write a book in which he talks his own brand of….philosophy and how it relates to life, the universe, and the current financial crisis. Whah?
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