Carpet Bomberz Inc.

Scouring the technology news sites every day

Starting from the students to build engaging computing courses for non-CS majors: Response to Goldweber and Walker


Prof. Mark Guzdial on the topic of designing courses and what is pedagogy vs. what is curricula. They’re not the same.

Originally posted on Computing Education Blog:

Michael Goldweber and Henry Walker responded to my blog posts (here in Blog@CACM and here in this blog) in the Inroad blog (see article here). My thanks to them for taking the time to respond to me. I found their comments especially valuable in helping to see where I was making assumptions about common values, goals, and understanding. It’s too easy in a blog to only get responses from people who share a common understanding (even if we violently disagree about values and goals). I found it helpful to get feedback from Dr. Goldweber and Dr. Walker with whom I don’t correspond regularly.

“Pedagogy” isn’t just “how to teach” for me. They argue that their articles are not about pedagogy but about what should be taught in a course that students might take to explore computer science. The page I linked to at the US Department of…

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March 5, 2015 at 12:14 pm

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Internet privacy, funded by spooks: A brief history of the BBG


Voice of America and all those propagandist triumphalist government programs are funded by us to the tune of $725M/year. That’s a lot of money.

Originally posted on PandoDaily:

jacob-appelbaum-torFor the past few months I’ve been covering U.S. government funding of popular Internet privacy tools like Tor, CryptoCat and Open Whisper Systems. During my reporting, one agency in particular keeps popping up: An agency with one of those really bland names that masks its wild, bizarre history: the Broadcasting Board of Governors, or BBG.

The BBG was formed in 1999 and runs on a $721 million annual budget. It reports directly to Secretary of State John Kerry and operates like a holding company for a host of Cold War-era CIA spinoffs and old school “psychological warfare” projects: Radio Free Europe, Radio Free Asia, Radio Martí, Voice of America, Radio Liberation from Bolshevism (since renamed “Radio Liberty”) and a dozen other government-funded radio stations and media outlets pumping out pro-American propaganda across the globe.

Today, the Congressionally-funded federal agency is also one of the biggest backers of grassroots and open-source…

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March 1, 2015 at 7:34 pm

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Our Japanese staff members pick the top places in Japan they’d like to visit again someday

Originally posted on RocketNews24:

fiFiguring out where to go during your stay in Japan can seem like an insurmountable task. For first-time visitors to the country, there are so many famous places to visit that the task of deciding becomes overwhelming. On the other hand, if you’ve been living in Japan for a while, you’re probably tired of all the crowded, touristy places and would like to go somewhere off-the-beaten path.

To help out our readers who are struggling with this internal dilemma, we’ve asked three reporters from our Japanese-language RocketNews24 team to share with us the top three places in Japan they’d definitely like to visit again someday. These three have had ample opportunities to travel to various places around the country and experience the local scenes in the name of eclectic journalism, so you can think of them as seasoned experts on the matter. Let’s see what little-known travel recommendations they have waiting…

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February 27, 2015 at 8:52 am

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February 25, 2015 at 12:58 pm

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WD-40 Should Read Its Own Label Before Suggesting Bartenders Use A Toxic Substance On Beer Tap Handles


I dare say there is a large quantity of lubricants on the market. Including “food safe” lubricants made out of mineral oil (which is safe) or silicone (which is also safe). But always, always go by the label. If it says it can be used in food handling equipment you’re good to go. If it doesn’t say explicitly that it’s safe for food handling equipment, DO NOT use it.

Originally posted on Consumerist:

(@OriginalWD40) (@OriginalWD40) We’ve got to imagine whoever handles the social media at WD-40 hasn’t read the product’s own label recently, because if so, that person would know that WD-40 is toxic and harmful to humans when ingested, making it a bad idea to use the stuff on anything that dispenses food or beverages. But heck, it’s World Bartender Day and no one wants squeaky tap handles, right?

The Twitter page for WD-40 Tweeted a recommendation suggesting that loyal customers might want to give the gift of the multi-purpose lubricant at their favorite watering hole:

The thing is, according to WD-40’s own site, the product is “harmful or fatal if swallowed” [PDF]. And on the can’s label? A giant skull and…

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February 24, 2015 at 4:42 pm

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MIT researchers claim they have a way to make faster chips


Oddly this reminds me of another MIT technology incubator spin-off called Tilera. I wonder if some off the principals involved overlap with Tilera and Co?

Originally posted on Gigaom:

A team of MIT researchers have discovered a possible way to make multicore chips a whole lot faster than they currently are, according to a recently published research paper.

The researchers’ work involves the creation of a scheduling technique called CDCS, which refers to computation and data co-scheduling. This technique can distribute both data and computations throughout a chip in such a way that the researchers claim that in a 64-core chip, computational speeds saw a 46 percent increase while power consumption decreased by 36 percent. This boost in speed is important because multicore chips are becoming more prevalent in data centers and supercomputers as a way to increase performance.

The basic premise behind the new scheduling technique is that data has to be near the computation that uses it, and the best way to do so is with a combination of hardware and software that distributes both the…

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February 20, 2015 at 8:47 pm

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You had one job!

Originally posted on Matt on Not-WordPress:

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February 20, 2015 at 10:27 am

Posted in technology