Sunday, February 25, 2007

This is the most wrong, terrifying photograph of our President ever taken. Including the one of him eating that baby...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Roses are #FF0000
Violets are #0000FF
All my base
Are belong to you

Happy Valentine's Day!

Sunday, February 11, 2007

First quantum computing system running commercial applications live to be unveiled, Feb. 8, 2007

D-Wave Systems, Inc. plans to demonstrate a technological first on Feb. 13: an end-to-end quantum computing system powered by a 16-qubit quantum processor, running two commercial applications, live.

This is the core of a new quantum computer to be unveiled by D-Wave Systems, says Steve Jurvetson, Managing Director of Draper Fisher Jurvetson, a leading venture-capital firm. "It is attached to a Leiden Cryogenics dilution fridge, ready to begin a cool down to 0.005 degrees above absolute zero. This quantum computer employs the resources of 65,536 parallel universes to compute answers in a fundamentally new way."

D-Wave claims it is the world's first and only provider of quantum computing systems designed to run commercial applications. The event will be hosted in Silicon Valley and Vancouver, B.C.

What exactly does it mean to 'employ the resources of 65,536 parallel universes'? Does this sound sketchy to anyone? I guess we'll see what happens on Tuesday...

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

"I would like to dispel a misunderstanding right away. To say that a way of thinking is disinterested and that it is an intellectual way of thinking does not mean at all that it is equal to scientific thinking. Of course, it remains different in a way, and inferior in another way. It remains different because its aim is to reach by the shortest possible means a general understanding of the universe -- and not only a general but a total understanding. That is, it is a way of thinking which must imply that if you don't understand everything, you don't explain anything. This is entirely in contradiction to what scientific thinking does, which is to proceed step by step, trying to give explanation for very limited phenomena, and then to go on to other kinds of phenomena, and so on. As Descartes had already said, scientific thinking aimed to divide the difficulty into as many parts as were necessary in order to solve it.

So this totalitarian ambition of the savage mind is quite different from the procedures of scientific thinking. Of course, the great difference is that this ambition does not succeed. We are able, through scientific thinking, to achieve mastery over nature -- I don't need to elaborate the point, it is obvious enough -- while, of course, myth is unsuccesful in giving man more material power over the environment. However, it gives man, very importantly, the illusion that he can understand the universe and that he *does* understand the universe. It is, of course, only an illusion" (Levi-Strauss, Myth and Meaning, 17).