Thursday, April 11, 2013

Links for Later 4-11-13

  1. Is grad school a cult? “In academia, perseverance is redefined as the ability to suffer silently or to survive on family wealth.”
  2. CISPA is an idiotic intrusion on your privacy by people who have no idea about technology or civil rights.
  3. Scott Turow also seems to have no idea about technology in publishing or the true scope of property rights.
  4. Ten websites that will get you started on coding.
  5. The real pivot.
  6. Time series in big data.
  7. Why funding science is always a good idea.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Sleeping Forest - Rise of Nature

Listening to this after hearing on Echoes.

Protips for Psychonauts

Lessons for those of you trying out those wacky new psychedelic molecules ginned up in offshore Chinese drug fabs or Idaho missile silos or wherever, according to the cover story in this week's New York Magazine:

1. Do not sell bulk quantities of esoteric drugs, much less LSD, to people who are described as "big fans of yours". This is a euphemism for "DEA agents". You will go to prison for a very long time.

2. Do not inject high doses of something called bromo-dragonFLY into your arm. It is evidently the strongest serotonin agonist known to humanity and will shut off your circulation, possibly causing you to lose that arm. That would be bad.

Transparent Brains

Kwanghun Chun and members of Karl Deisseroth's lab at Stanford have developed a technique for making preserved brains transparent, so an in-situ 3-D model can be seen. The process, called Clarity, allows for multiple rounds of staining and microscopic examination to occur. More at The New York Times.

Friday, April 05, 2013

Links for Later 4-5-13

1. Someone tries Modafanil as a cognitive/performance enhancer, gets mixed results.
2. BJ Fogg's Behavior Grid: 15 ways behavior can change.
3. Ukelele Orchestra of Great Britain plays Wheetus' "Teenage Dirtbag".
4. Obama Administration makes another attempt to gut Social Security.
5. Another PhD begs you not to get one.
6. Tim Ferriss/Bittorrent explain why you should treat your book like a startup.
7. Tim Ferriss's Quantified Self notes, and his undergrad LSD cognitive enhancement study.
8. Massha Gessen explains how The Americans gets Russians right.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Alec Baldwin Interviews Lewis Lapham

This Lewis Lapham interview from last December is fascinating throughout, as Lapham's Quarterly is:
Lewis Lapham: Right. On the other hand by the time grandfather got to be Mayor of San Francisco in 1942 he ran as an Independent. He was very open. I mean he would pick hitchhikers up. He never had a bodyguard, he never had tinted windows –

Alec Baldwin: He was more genuine. 
Lewis Lapham: – he used to like to go into the saloons in San Francisco late at night and the – he wanted to get a bond issue passed to replace the street cars on Market Street with busses, and there was some resistance about that, so he put it to a bet. He said, ‘Okay, there will be a race. I will race from the Ferry building to City Hall. I will ride an elephant against a trolley car, and if the elephant beats the trolley car we have the bond issue. If not, not.’

But he was a gambling man so he insisted on a handicap, and the handicap was that the elephant would be allowed to go through red lights. The elephant won. The bond issue passed.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Links for Later 4-1-13

1. The anti-rentier agenda.
2. Network theory reveals altitude sickness is actually two (or more) separate diseases.
3. How Kickstarter worked on Craig Mod's republishing effort.
4. Microsoft fails to listen to its user base, continues Modern push.
5. Adam Grant on the importance of helping and giving.
6. Mapping with dollars.
7. Anne Carson profiled in the NYT
8. Effects of vasoactive intestinal peptide on the response properties of cells in area 17 of the cat visual cortex. My go-to reference for attention at the cellular/molecular level.