Kaspersky inadvertently quarantines Windows Explorer#

The security company's systems had decided that a virus called Huhk-C was present in the explorer.exe file, leading to its confinement or, in some cases, deletion. As Windows Explorer is the graphical user interface (GUI) for Windows' file system, this made it difficult to perform many common tasks within the operating system, such as finding files.

OK, so these things happen, but come on, this is pretty funny.

Paleo-Future#

"A look into the future that never was." Wow, what an awesome site.

The power of a single neuron#

Stimulating just one neuron can be enough to affect learning and behaviour, researchers have found. The results, published this week by Nature, conflict with the long-held notion that many neurons — in the order of thousands — are required to generate a behavioural reaction.

Amazon SimpleDB thoughts#

Amazon's docs do a pretty good job of describing SimpleDB, so I won't try to reproduce them. Instead, I'll focus on observations, and I'll emphasize a few important points that are buried deep in the docs.

Laws of nature, source unknown#

'Everything in our world is purely mathematical — including you.' This would explain why math works so well in describing the cosmos. It also suggests an answer to the question that Stephen Hawking, the English cosmologist, asked in his book, 'A Brief History of Time': 'What is it that breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe?' Mathematics itself is on fire.

The Eye-Fi Card#

The Eye-Fi Card "is a wireless memory card. It automatically uploads pictures from your digital camera to your PC or Mac and to your favorite photo sharing, printing, blogging or social networking site."

Brilliant.

Unhappy? Self-critical? Maybe you're just a perfectionist.#

In short, these are people who not only swallow many of the maxims for success but take them as absolutes. At some level they know that it’s possible to succeed after falling short (build on your mistakes: another boilerplate rule). The trouble is that falling short still reeks of mediocrity; for them, to say otherwise is to spin the result.

Uh-hum.

The paradox of choice#

Psychologist Barry Schwartz takes aim at a central belief of western societies: that freedom of choice leads to personal happiness. In Schwartz's estimation, all that choice is making us miserable. We set unreasonably high expectations, question our choices before we even make them, and blame our failures entirely on ourselves. His relatable examples, from consumer products (jeans, TVs, salad dressings) to lifestyle choices (where to live, what job to take, whom and when to marry), underscore this central point: Too many choices undermine happiness.

Upgrading to XP, from Vista#

Microsoft have really outdone themselves in delivering a brand new operating system that really excels in all the areas where Vista was sub-optimal. From my testing, discussions with friends and colleagues, and a review of the material out there on the web there seems to be no doubt whatsoever that that upgrade to XP is well worth the money. Microsoft can really pat themselves on the back for a job well done, delivering an operating system which is much faster and far more reliable than its predecessor. Anyone who thinks there are problems in the Microsoft Windows team need only point to this fantastic release and scoff loudly.

Google develops Wikipedia rival#

Entries can't be edited or revised by other people, in contrast to Wikipedia. However, other readers will be able to rank and review others' entries, which will then be interpreted by Google's search engine when displaying results.

I have to admit that I don't quite grok this; save the human element added to PageRank, how is this really different from a multi-author blog with comments?

UPS doesn't like to turn left#

Last year [], the software [employed by UPS to minimize its use of left hand turns], helped the company shave 28.5 million miles off its delivery routes, which has resulted in savings of roughly three million gallons of gas and has reduced CO2 emissions by 31,000 metric tons.

Woah!

Amazon launches SimpleDB#

Amazon SimpleDB is a web service for running queries on structured data in real time. This service works in close conjunction with Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) and Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2), collectively providing the ability to store, process and query data sets in the cloud. These services are designed to make web-scale computing easier and more cost-effective for developers.

Man, Amazon is everywhere lately.

Can Super Glue heal wounds?#

The question reminds me of a wakeboarding story from years ago. I had just started my first run of the day and was doing some crazy aerial maneuver when my back foot came out of the boot; upon landing, my heel dug into one of the bindings and I was left with a pretty gnarly cut. Given that we had just got in the water, I wasn't quite ready to call it quits, so we beached the boat and I ran up to my house to dress the wound. With Super Glue. I just pulled the skin back, filled in the hole, and put weight on my heel. As good as new.