Intel Unveils Its First Solid-State Drive – Technology News by InformationW

Who knew? Intel is jumping in with both feet to compete agains the likes of Samsung and Sandisk. It’s going to be a wild, wilde ride.

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Great Global Warming Swindle

Martin Durkin has about as much credibility as any Holocaust Denial perpetrator, or any Kansas City School Board who wants to discredit Evolution because it has the word ‘theory’ in its title.

Martin Durkin has about as much credibility as any Holocaust Denial perpetrator, or more recently Kansas City School Board who wanted to discredit Evolution because it is considered a ‘theory’. Durkin can play these semantic games all night folks, and on into the next century but whither the children? Who will be the ultimate victims of the crimes we perpetrate now? Anyone who continues to argue that the variation in global temperature is natural, and proceeds to look at short, time scales is obviously not sampling enough data. A human time scale of say an adult would be around 72 years old depending on what country you live in. Meausring the rate of ‘natural’ temperature variation on that scale is capricous at best. That’s why so many climatologists have been digging ice cores at the South Pole. They need a bigger and more corroborated data set to determine how much fluctuation occurs ‘naturally’. And ice cores as such will move you well out of the ‘human’ time scale to the geologic time scale (thousands to millions of years). If a real scientist had produced this show in a format backed by real data, explained plainly it would be much more convincing. But throwing in all this crap about Sun spots and vague notions of scientists discounting things. That’s just typical YELLOW JOURNALISM practiced in a documentary form. Martin Durkin should be ashamed of himself as should Channel 4.

I would add that the ‘new’ evidence provided by the researchers at the Danish Space Center is itself the real hypothesis here, not Global Warming. I wouldn’t expect a group of researchers who are physicists doing research in the following:

Research areas: 1) compact objects and the accretion flows associated with these and 2) the formation and development of galaxies and galaxy clusters and the cosmological implications herewith.
Solar System Physics
Research areas: 1) Planetary and interplanetary magnetic fields and 2) electrical discharges in the Earth’s upper atmophere.
Research areas: 1) maintenance and development of geodetic infrastructure, 2) development of new techniques for surveying and mapping, such as GPS and Galileo and 3) new space-based Earth Observation techniques.
Research areas: 1) monitoring the northern cryosphere and 2) airborne mapping of the gravity field
Research area: the link between Earth’s climate and solar activity through effects of cosmic rays on Earth’s cloud cover.
Remote sensing
The primary research areas within remote sensing are: Techniques
Aerospace Instrumentation
The focus is to develop concepts, designs, implementations and verifications of the advanced high performance instruments for use onboard spacecrafts.

These are NOT the people I would put ALL my trust in de-bunking what Martin Durkin has called the global warming scandal. A bunch of space researches who devote so little research to actual climate research? Give me a break. Who are these guys? They certainly are not the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), who by the way are a bunch of physicists that DO study the climate all the time. Space scientists are not geologists, meteorologists, climatologists, or biologists all of whom are collecting the data on a ‘geologic’ time scale that was so conveniently left out of big data shown in Martin Durkin’s program.

In future, everyone should go out of their way to deny Martin Durkin a forum for settling the score, and making scientists into the ‘bad guy’s as he has been quoted as saying. Otherwise the War on Science will continue as it has always done. Johns Manville conducted the War on Science for the Asbestos. Big Tobacco companies conducted the War on Science for the Cigarette industry. GM conducted the War on Ralph Nader when he dared right “Unsafe at any Speed”. It’s no different now except for Martin Durkin is the wolf in sheeps clothing trying to kill off Global Warming in the old ‘death by a thousand pin pricks method of Chinese folklore. As for me, this is the only time I will weigh in as it is the biggest waste of my time and your time dear reader to engage with these know-nothings over the validity of Global Warming. They are like doomed survivors of the Poseidon Adventure who go the wrong way and are never seen again. They deny at their own peril.

The sad thing is Adam Curry of has done an episode of his podcast (the Daily Source Code) where he talks about the show. Unfortunately he’s bought into the complicated argument and slick presentation contained in the Great Global Warming Swindle. Adam seemed to be willing to listen to an opposing view point, no matter how ludicrous just as long as it ‘looked’ convincing. Durkin’s program more or less says humans are not responsible for global warming. So I guess the logical conclusion is, DO NOTHING. Well Adam Curry once went on a big rant about a year ago as he an another podcaster, Madge Weinstein, battled back and forth over the issue of homophobia. Adam’s rant more or less came out as and I’m paraphrasing here, “There are do-ers and there are talkers”. I guess Martin Durkin gets credit for doing a documentary, but gets double-plus ungood talking points for alaying everyones fears over global warming and saying, “It’s not your fault”.


Podcast Gear and New Media Gear – Broadcast Mics

The top 4 broadcast mics are compared head-to-head. Two Electro-Voice, 1 Heil and 1 Rode. Good demonstration of the Heil articulation bump. And a nice demonstration of the increasing scale of clarity and sibilance as you compare Rode, EV, and Heil mics. Mark and Laura do a good job with the comparison.

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Frontline: News War (Episode 3)

In this episode we discover the economics that drive the so-called ‘News Business’. Apparently up until 1968-69 the networks ran their news divisions in the public interest as dictated by the FCC. Everything changed when CBS with Don Hewitt at the helm created “60 Minutes”, which turned a profit for the news division. It was all downhill from there. Personally I kind of like ’60 Minutes’ as both an investigative news show and as entertainment. The proof that things had changed was when the Loews Corp knuckled under pressure from the ‘Cigarette Industry’ and buried the Jeffrey Weigand whistle-blowing expose on the research done on the effects of cigarettes and the correlation with cancer. I wrote once in an ironic way (probably ripped off of another article I read at the time) that this time Dan Rather’s vaunted eye of CBS blinked. That was proof that ’60 Minutes’ was not like other news programs. It had financial interests to protect.

And whither the old grey newspapers? When public ownership became all the rage and stockholders drove decisions at the newspapers, things took a turn for the worse. The financial obligation a publicly traded company has to its stockholders and the profit margins required outweigh any public interest the newspaper may serve. Knight-Ridder was profiled in its takeover of the L.A. Times and the what followed as the profit margin shot up to 20% year over year. Every quarter attempts were made to show stockholders that management was actively involved and that profits would stay high. Which requires constant publicly visible attempts to cut costs. This is the merry-go-round every company suffers from, and in the era before publicly traded Newspapers, was unnecessary. Families owned newspaper operations in the prior age, and didn’t require 20% profit margins year over year. And therefore, newspapers didn’t have to go through a quarterly charade of cutting costs to maintain profits and growth.

The measure of success for the public interest oriented newspapers and broadcasters are the St. Petersburg Times and National Public Radio. St. Pete is run as a non-profit trust and they are able to be profitable, but are not required to maintain year over year profits and growth in the range of 20% profit and 1% growth each year. As a result the St. Petersburg Times is the most popular newspaper in ALL of Florida, central and otherwise. The only thing I remember coming from the St. Petersburg Times is Dave Barry’s humor column. In retrospect, it makes sense that Barry would have found a comfortable home at this newspaper. The other measure of success is any news organization that is able to keep reporters permanently stationed in Baghdad since before the invasion began. As it stands today National Public Radio can count itself in the same league as N.Y.Times, AP, Reuters, etc. Very few organizations outside the newswires are able to bear the cost of reporting daily from Baghdad. And now NPR is counted as the most trusted broadcast news reporting organization in the U.S. with 26million listeners. Thank God someone is doing something right. Let’s hope private ownership and private trusts can reverse the trend of poorly managed publicly traded media companies.


I inform people against their will

Borrowed from the podcast of “This American Life” #326. Full attribution is a good thing. Mystery Hunt @ MIT. New Puzzles keep coming. There are no instructions but there is an answer. However in real life, outside of MIT, most problems don’t have an answer. Thirteen and half straight hours, 30 straight hours. Dave tells the story of his time at Hallmark in Kansas City, MO. He moved from humor to serious and couldn’t figure out why he was told not to use so many allusions in his day to day speech. “Ooooh, that’s the problem. I inform people against their will.” The thing that makes you annoying in the regular world is not annoying here. Some people have talents that require the right context in which to shine. Truer words were never spoken, thankyou Lisa Pollock.


Frontline: News War (Episode 2)

The subtitle to this whole episode should be Caged Heat: Reporters in Jail

Reporters are more and more being coerced into revealing sources for the stories they file at their respective newspapers and networks. Two reporters at the San Francisco Chronicle broke a story about the steroid scandal at BALCO (Bay Area Lab Coop), a vitamin shop down by San Francisco Airport. Well, in the reporting of what happened a lot of names were stricken from the public record, in the indictment from the Grand Jury. And this is where things go terribly wrong. The Bush Administration has taken the stance that ANY amount of information that leaks out of Grand Jury proceeding meets the ‘exigent’ circumstances as stated in the rules regarding subpeona’s for reporter’s sources on a story. The government is supposed to exhaust all other means of determining the source of the leak before they turn to forcing the reporter to name his/her sources. This according to interviews done with Justice Department employees is completely up to the interpretation of whomever has been appointed to whichever position at Justice. From political appointees to the full-timers they ultimately hire, THOSE are the folks that make the determination of ‘exigent’ circumstances. It should come as no surprise that any other group of individuals still under the title of “Department of Justice” could come to a much different conclusion. One administration determines that 18 subpeonas must be issued, the next administration never submits subpeaonas, and guess who pays the price of those stupid subpeona cases? You and me ladies an gentlemen. The vendettas being carried out against the press are costing you and me hard earned tax dollars.

Now I agree with most of the legal arguments that state Grand Jury testimony is not an indictment. You are not guilty just because you’re called to testify at a Grandy Jury proceeding. And therefore you wouldn’t ever be suspected of being a criminal because the proceedings are SECRET. It’s nobody’s business but you and the court. Under different circumstances, sometimes the Court decides the proceedings no longer are secret. Sometimes and individual decides their testimony is no longer secret. Sometimes information comes out. In the BALCO case, the court record of testimony made it out of the Court’s hands, and that’s whent he crime was committed. I personally come down on the side of following the rules of a Grand Jury proceeding. Best not to infringe on someone’s rights even if it may ‘resonate’ as the reporters of the Chronicle say over and over again. Resonance is by no means a justification for breaking a law. Next time, try to exhaust every means you can to get the same information. Don’t quote the Court Record. At the same time, why is the Justice Department being used as a blunt instrument to generally threaten the Press at large. Makes no sense to me. There’s a lot of blame to go around. Two wrongs (the reporters and the Justice Dept.) will not make this right.


Frontline: News War (Episode 1)

Judy Miller says she was only as good as her sources. That her sources mis-informed her, that she trusted them too much, trusted they wouldn’t mislead the the President. Knight-Ridder stood up as Clark Hoyt wrote that ‘nothing’ had changed in Iraq. They were no bigger threat now than they were 10-15 years ago. Eventually the Washington Post catches on and Walter Pincus writes that Iraq may have no WMD, that it was all wishful thinking on Saddam Hussein’s part. By the Summer of 2003 it was too late. It was obvious there was no WMD. Then Joe Wilson stood up, and recounted his role in the mess. The Vice Pres. wanted Niger followed-up on so the CIA sends Joe Wilson to follow-up. There was no link to Niger, nothing to substantiate the claim. So Joe Wilson steps forward to let people know that Bush 43 administration was stone-walling. The CIA took the fall for the Niger claim, saying they let that fact go in when they hadn’t meant to. Then they smeared Wilson’s wife, to punish him for his dissent. In doing so they may have broken some laws regarding classified information. So the Justice department has to go through the list of 11 point checklist, to determine whether a prosecution is in order.

WMD’s still weren’t found. Democrats in the Capitol wanted a special prosecutor, and John Ashcroft will step aside to let Patrick Fitzgerald investigate and prosecute. Matthew Cooper was told by Karl Rove that Valerie Plame was a CIA agent and may have authorized the Joe Wilson trip to Niger. The government depended on the journalists to keep the sources, the leakers identity secret and out of the articles. This is no Mark Felt, the third man at the FBI guidng Bob Woodward, it was the elite political advisor of the President who was performing damage control by leaking smears against Joe Wilson. Because the journalists wouldn’t reveal confidential sources, Scott Fitzgerald had to use a funny tactic that didn’t require the reporters to reveal sources, but they could still provide a deposition to the Grand Jury.

The Branzburg case went to the Supreme Court (many years ago) and stated there was no ‘confidentiality’ when it came to reporter and confidential sources, when a crime may be committed by the sources. What is the essential route that reporters have to investigate things for the public: “confidential sources”–William Safire. James Goodale was working at the NYTimes as the legal counsel to the paper. He moved to make sure every state had court cases that ruled in favor of confidentiality, and the reporter’s privilege of not having to reveal sources under subpeona. Judy Miller and Matt Cooper were being strong-armed by Patrick Fitzgerald, and the Supreme Court refused to hear the case. Branzburg stands, there is no protection of journalists from a Grand Jury seeking testimony concerning confidential sources used in a story.

Then things get worse. Judy Miller goes to jail because she will not testify, and won’t give up her notes. Some speculated that she was trying to cover her inaccurate reporting on WMDs in the NYTimes. Then Bob Woodward discovered that he had learned it first from Richard Armitage the Deputy Secretary of State under Colin Powell. Bob Novak had also found this out from Richard Armitage. The whole thing, the brou-ha-ha at its core is hinged on Richard Armitage. Poor guy, probably didn’t know how much he had affected  if not initiated this whole mess.