Friday, June 09, 2006

adopt-a-blog - a Parthian Shot

ScienceBlogs has now expanded to 40+ blogs, with 25 new additions in the current "Big Bang" expansion phase.

Yours truly has been assimilated into the Autonomous Collective.
Someone has supreme executive power, but I only received a movable type account, no scimitars in sight.
Internal rumours are that the Old Farts over on scienceblogs are planning some sort of aquatic ceremony for the New Kids though.

Anyway, for posterity, and y'know, 'cause links are an intrinsic good...



This blog is shutting down operation.

I'm moving to ScienceBlogs.

Move pointers, blogrolls, links etc to

Dynamics of Cats is dead

Long live Dynamics of Cats

Thursday, June 08, 2006

iPod iChing - the Autonomous Collective

Friday, and we ask: oh, mighty iPod - Big Move coming. What shall it portend? And how will it work out?

Intriguing. You decide.

As always, the Key as explained by Sean


I've been waiting for a long time
For this moment to come
I'm destined
For all
Downtown lights will be shining
On me like a diamond
Ring out under the midnight hour
No one can touch me now
And I can't turn my back
It's too late ready or not at all

Squyres vs Colbert

Steve Squyres (Mars Rover PI) was on The Colbert Show.

Did well. I really like Colbert putting on the occasional scientist - Neil de Grasse Tyson, Brian Greene and now Squyres.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Pen and Sword

Pen and Sword

blog seen on FDL

Looks worth a read.

Built Like a Tank

GrrlScientist has a cool pic of a new dino

I'm late for a meeting.
If I only knew where the meeting was.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Spacecraft with a view

Monday, June 05, 2006

Unsportsmanlike Conduct

Big Kid is playing football (proper association football, or soccer for you misguided yanks out there).
Er, well, three-a-side on a mini-pitch with infinite substitution and no goalies, but they run around a lot and kick the ball.

So... I've already got over the realization that some of the coaches are coaching bodychecking and elbowing... seems a bit unnecessary, but I suppose it is part of the game. But, last sunday it went too far.

The opposing team, after going down early on, if I may say so, a brilliant goal involving good hustle and well timed passing, started to line up for setplays scowling and growling and screaming. Bad little sports.
Well, the bloody coach, I finally heard first hand, was coaching them to use their "mean faces" and "angry voices"!

WTF is with that?!

Oh, the coaches self-referee. Did I mention that?
Because if you pulled this crap in a real game you'd be yellow carded for unsportsmanlike conduct.
What is the point? It is not part of the game, those kids were not having fun, and win/loss record was not kept.
Well, it works. Even the parents who had never played football realised something was wrong because our kids body language was wrong, they were holding back, not charging the ball or running through the defence - 'cause from their perspective there was something seriously wrong, psycho wrong, with those other kids.

Anyway, we had a chat at halftime and decided humour was the best defence. Didn't work.
Human kid brains are really trained to flinch from open anger and hostility.
The other kids can't have been having any fun, I expect none will continue playing, but for an hour, neither did our kids.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

World Cup 2106

Greg Egan

Currently reading Rainbows End - it is very good btw, but curiously flawed in a way that is consistent with the flaws in Fast Times at Fairmont High, but more on that later - anyway there is an amusing aside there to "Egan Soccer" in an illustrative discussion on consensual reality.
Hm, thought I, sounds familiar.

Off to EganSpace we jump (and if you don't read Greg Egan, you should).

Quantum Soccer!

With Applets! And a full explanation of the math, and the context from the original story,.


Friday, June 02, 2006

An Ode to 2006


Why must you record my phone calls?
Are you planning a bootleg L.P?
Said you've been threatened by gangsters
Now it's you that’s threatening me.

Can't fight corruption with con tricks
They use the law to commit crime?
I dread, dread to think what the future will bring
When we’re living in gangster times.

"Don't call me Scarface!"

Don't interrupt while I'm talking
Or they'll confiscate all your guitars.
A catch - 22 says if I sing the truth
They won't make me an overnight star.

Don't offer us legal protection
They use the law to commit crime.
I dread to think what the future will bring
When we're living in real gangster times.


iPod iChing - Oracular Six

A cryptic friday, and we are late. No noscience today.

iPod, we ask: what will the next month bring?


  • The Covering: Lost John - Lonnie Donnegan

  • The Crossing: Exodus - Bob Marley

  • The Crown: Encore - O Sole Mio - Three Tenors

  • The Root: Magic Flute - Mozart

  • The Past: Girlfriend is Better - Talking Heads

  • The Future: Somewhere only we know - Keane

  • The Questioner: The Internationale - Billy Bragg

  • The House: Ó blessuð vertu sumarsól - traditional

  • The Inside: Meunier Tu Dors - Sien Diels

  • The Outcome: Mommy, Daddy, You and I - Talking Heads

#11 Redundant - Green Day; #12 Rite of Spring

Hm. Changes, revolution, summer and love.

As always, the Key as explained by Sean

carrier convergence

Nuclear Mangos has a link to a web page in japan that US Aircraft carriers
No idea how reliable are, though some of their info is consistent with stuff in the news, and some is dated.

So... the USS Reagan was in the Persian Gulf, been there 3 months, but been almost six months at sea.
Carrier rotation is six months, so it should be headin back to the US soon. It backed out of the Gulf this week and was in the Indian Ocean.

The USS Enterprise was in the Med, but supposedly crossed the canal to the Red Sea and is near the Persian Gulf.
Norfolk news reported in April she was deploying to the Gulf.

USS Lincoln is in the Pacific, with a six month rotation should go back at the end of June, just made a short stop in Japan.
The USS Stennis scooted out to sea, apparently, right after a visit from Cheney last weekend.
The Stennis could be going to replace the Lincoln.

Anyway, if the US wanted, they could have four carriers just outside the Persian Gulf in the next 4 weeks.
Or they could send two home for well deserved rest. Hope to hear the Reagan and Lincoln are back in harbour soon.