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A Mathematician’s Lament — an Indictment of US Math Education

Scott Aaronson recently had “A Mathematician’s Lament” [PDF], Paul Lockhardt’s indictment of K-12 math education in the US, pointed out to him and takes some time to examine the finer points. “Lockhardt says pretty much everything I’ve wanted to say about this subject since the age of twelve, and does so with the thunderous rage of an Old Testament prophet. If you like math, and more so if you think you don’t like math, I implore you to read his essay with every atom of my being. Which is not to say I don’t have a few quibbles […] In the end, Lockhardt’s lament is subversive, angry, and radical … but if you know anything about math and anything about K-12 ‘education’ (at least in the United States), I defy you to read and find a single sentence that isn’t permeated, suffused, soaked, and encrusted with truth.”

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Friday, June 19th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on A Mathematician’s Lament — an Indictment of US Math Education

Game Design: A Practical Approach

Aeonite writes “As the title suggests, Game Design: A Practical Approach presents a practical approach to game design — one that is almost too practical in places. The book does a good job of covering many of the foundational elements of game design (called “atoms” by the author), but in places the level of practical detail — and the heavy focus on Lua code examples — is a bit hard to work through. Readers allergic to code may find themselves skipping over swaths of text instead of actually reading it.” Read below for the rest of Michael’s review.

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Wednesday, June 17th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Game Design: A Practical Approach

Lenovo’s $499 G530, 15" Dual Core Notebook, Tested

We see the target market for the G530 as twofold. First off, it’s aimed at business-people looking for a no-nonsense notebook to handle basic tasks without breaking the bank. Then, there’s the crowd who is thinking about a netbook, but are worried over the underwhelming Atom N270/N280 CPU and the tiny display.

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Tuesday, June 16th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Lenovo’s $499 G530, 15" Dual Core Notebook, Tested

Intel Hopes To Enter Smartphone Chip Market

Next year, Intel plans to introduce a new version of Atom thatis even more power efficient than the one we have today. CalledMoorestown, this upcoming chip will begin targeting the smartphonemarket. In 2011, Intel plans to introduce an even smaller and lesspower hungry version of the chip known as Medfield.

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Sunday, June 14th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Intel Hopes To Enter Smartphone Chip Market

Intel Eyes Smartphone Chip Market

MojoKid writes “Intel has been rather successful at carving out a larger percentage of the netbook market with their low power Atom processor. Moving forward, Intel’s executives believe there’s a good potential to increase Atom’s traction in adjacent markets by targeting its low-cost, energy-efficient chips at various multifunctional consumer gadgets including smartphones and other portable devices that access the Internet. Code-named Moorestown, a new version of the chip will offer a 50x power reduction at idle and reportedly will deliver enough horsepower to handle 720p video recording and 1080p quality playback. It is with this upcoming chip, that Intel will begin targeting the smartphone market In 2011. Intel also plans to introduce an even smaller, less power hungry version of the chip known as Medfield, which will be built on a 32nm process with a full solution comprising a PCB area of about half the size of a credit card.”

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Sunday, June 14th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Intel Eyes Smartphone Chip Market

Periodic Table Gets a New, Unnamed Element

koavf writes “More than a decade after experiments first produced a single atom of ‘super-heavy’ element 112, a team of German scientists has been credited with its discovery, but it has yet to be named. The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry has temporarily named the element ununbium, as ‘ununbi’ means ‘one one two’ in Latin; but the team now has the task of proposing its official name.” Slashdotium? Taconium? Man, I shoulda gone into science so I could have named something sweet that kids have to memorize in classes.

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Thursday, June 11th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Periodic Table Gets a New, Unnamed Element

First Acoustic Black Hole Created

KentuckyFC writes “One of the many curious properties of Bose Einstein Condensates (BECs) is that the flow of sound through them is governed by the same equations that describe how light is bent by a gravitational field. Now, a group of Israeli physicists have exploited this idea to create an acoustic black hole in a BEC. The team created a supersonic flow of atoms within the BEC, a flow that prevents any phonon caught in it from making headway. The region where the flow changes from subsonic to supersonic is an event horizon, because any phonon unlucky enough to stray into the supersonic region can never escape. The real prize is not the acoustic black hole itself but what it makes possible: the first observation of Hawking radiation. Quantum tech predicts that pairs of phonons with opposite momentum ought to be constantly springing in and out of existence in a BEC. Were one of the pair to stray across the event horizon into the supersonic region, it could never escape. However, the other would be free to go on its way. This stream of phononic radiation away from an acoustic black hole would be the first observation of Hawking radiation. The team hasn’t gotten that far yet, but it can’t be long now before either they or their numerous competitors make this leap.”

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Wednesday, June 10th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on First Acoustic Black Hole Created

Wind River buy makes Intel a software company

The 4 million acquisition deal gives Intel a serious software business. But will it light a fire under the Atom chip for embedded computing?

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Thursday, June 4th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Wind River buy makes Intel a software company

Acer to make first-ever Android netbooks: Linux is back

Acer at Computex today said it would be the first to produce netbooks using Google’s Android platform. Company IT product president Jim Wong expects the systems to appear in the summer and that the Linux-based systems will still use Intel Atom processors. They should be less expensive than Windows versions and also run quicker.

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Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on Acer to make first-ever Android netbooks: Linux is back

DIY Coil Gun with Laser Gun Sight Fires at 110km/h

If an atomic zombie is molesting you, get this coil gun, aim with its built-in laser gun sight and pew-pew a metal projectile at 110km/h into his rotting cranium, with a total energy of 18 joules.

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Friday, May 29th, 2009 Uncategorized Comments Off on DIY Coil Gun with Laser Gun Sight Fires at 110km/h