Archive for the ‘Zeitgeist’ Category

WarkaWater

$550 bamboo WarkaWater towers, producing 25 gallons of drinkable water each day from water dew in the air. Set for real-world tests in Ethiopia in 2015.

Blog brain

A fascinating new open access article, The Myth of Cognitive Decline: Non-Linear Dynamics of Lifelong Learning. It gets a little dense between the abstract and the conclusion, but basically finds… “… that older adults’ changing performance reflects memory search demands, which escalate as experience grows. … Our results indicate that older adults’ performance on cognitive […]

‘You’ll believe a nerd can fly!’

Drone with real-time streaming HD video steady-cam + a connected Oculus Rift = flying like a bird. Or, more likely, Drone Races!

Welcome to the Pleasuredome…

Nice to see that the social equivalent of the Oculus Rift is right here in the West Midlands (Shropshire, to be precise). Igloo Technology make HD immersive media domes from 20ft across and larger, complete with special media players and all the kit needed…

Trees, People and the Built Environment

Trees, People and the Built Environment conference, 2nd to 3rd April 2014 in Birmingham. Plus a pre-conference symposium, on a somewhat premature-but-flattering theme, Birmingham, the UK’s First Biophilic City: what it means to the citizen, the health services and urban forestry.

Lady Dinah’s Cat Cafe

Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium, London’s (and possibly the UK’s) first dedicated cat cafe. Opening soon in Shoreditch. Website is likely to have been crashed by traffic, at present, but here’s the promo video…

Which three thousand books…

Riffing off the “which three books would you take…” idea, introduced by George Pal at the end of his classic movie adaptation of Wells’s The Time Machine, The Long Now Foundation is choosing 3000 books you would most want to use to rebuild civilization, for their new Long Now space in Fort Mason, USA.

The 1000 year forest

To the treetops!… A “ONE thousand year project” that aims to restore the forests of Northern England is taking place at Manchester School of Art. Dr David Haley, Senior Research Fellow at the School, is an ecological artist who explores our relation to the world and our continued survival as a species through artistic means. […]

Brian Eno & Danny Hillis on The Long Now

Brian Eno & Danny Hillis discuss “The Long Now, now” to kick off the second decade of the Seminars About Long-term Thinking talks (RSS feed for .mp3 files of all seminar talks). They purchased a mountain. To house a clock that will keep time for 10,000 years…

Edge.org 2014 question, in Kindle .mobi conversion

The world’s leading thinkers on the Edge question for 2014: What scientific idea is ready for retirement? Since the single page is the length of two novels (130,000 words), and thus the likes of Instapaper will choke on it, I’ve taken the liberty of making a simple free Kindle .mobi conversion which looks nice and […]

humanprogress.org

New data visualisation website, Human Progress.

My new Windows 8.1 Metro themed desktop

New Year, new desktop design at D’log… The rationale: I liked the design flair and sheer chutzpah of the Windows 8 look, but loathed the clunky Microsoftist “do it our way, or else” implementation. Having successfully bypassed Microsoft’s apps / store and other impositions with my new Windows 8.1 PC, I still wanted the Windows […]

Killer rice, or not

I recently heard from a friend about “bacteria in room-temperature cooked rice”. It was news to me, and for years I’ve often reheated plain boiled rice. Now it seems the BBC is stirring the idea into a nascent panic. But, hang on, let’s first take a look at the actual number of cases in the […]

_Bham Free WiFi

Virgin Media Business has launched… “a super-fast free Wi-Fi service to serve the city of Birmingham  [Visitors] will be able to access unlimited Wi-Fi free of charge across the city centre with the eight connected locations providing 2.5sq miles of coverage. […] In order to connect users should look for the hotspot ID “_Bham Free […]

Rather

Facebook apps Unbaby Me and Unpolitic Me are now a unified Google Chrome extension called

Going postal

The U.S. Postal Service is destroying an entire run of new postage stamps, because the children’s activities they depict upset the “health ‘n safety” zealots…

The interview and the hire

The Atlantic on Google’s evidence-based approach to job interviews… “Years ago, we did a study to determine whether anyone at Google is particularly good at hiring,” Laszlo Bock, Google’s senior vice president for people operations, told LinkedIn. “We looked at tens of thousands of interviews, and everyone who had done the interviews and what they […]

Bham Uni takes drugs myth and cures it

Birmingham University busts a popular doomist myth… “The idea that the supply of breakthrough [medical] drugs in the UK is drying up is a myth, researchers from Birmingham University reported in BMJ Open. In fact … the opposite seems to be the case”

Roboteachers

Emote. Er, no. Just no… “A €2.9m Emote project at the University of Birmingham is seeking to develop robotic classroom tutors, with human empathic capabilities.”

39 minutes of Cloud Atlas cut by Chinese censors

Looks like the Chinese government feels really threatened by Cloud Atlas. The movie has been officially censored in China, with a massive 39 minutes removed — that’s about a quarter of the film. It must be a mess, but perhaps the sheer amount of cuts will drive the more intelligent Chinese viewers to the full-length […]