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Archive for November, 2005

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005

Jigsaw Pieces

3 The park and ride parking lot is almost empty, the bar is up and a big sign asks me to hold the SmarTrip (!) card to the post to exit the lot, so I do. Seconds later I realize that today is Sunday, and that parking is free on Sundays, but the fee has […]

Monday, November 28th, 2005

Der heilige Andreas

Der Andreasgraben kreuzt die Berge von Santa Cruz in nordwestlicher Richtung, schneidet die Halbinsel, an deren Spitze San Francisco liegt, und verläuft dann etliche Dutzend Meilen im Pazifik. Von den Flanken von Mount Tamalpais aus kann man das abrupte Ende der nordatlantischen Platte und den Beginn der pazifischen am scharf verlaufenden Kontrast der Wasserfarben erkennen, […]

Wednesday, November 9th, 2005

Meditation

The Society for Neuroscience announces it’s most prominent speaker at this year’s meeting, plus a few special considerations: “Special security procedures will be in effect, as directed by the U.S. State Department Office of Diplomatic Security, which provides security for the Dalai Lama when he is in the United States. We have been advised that […]

Wednesday, November 9th, 2005

The Joys of Computing

When at 9:30pm the dreaded poster is finally taking shape, to be printed out early the next day, and a fuzzy feeling of happy relaxation invades the bodily cavities, for the body’s owner is to go home soon, and when then just seconds later, upon pressing the oft used keystroke combination of CTRL-SHIFT-LEFT in order […]

Sunday, November 6th, 2005

Deceptive Imagery

The first thing I noticed when seeing this shot of Bush during his recent visit to Argentina were the rolled up sleeves, maybe because they’re so blatantly obvious, maybe because I was primed by the recently leaked email correspondence of then FEMA director Michael Brown, where he was advised to roll up his sleeves to […]

Sunday, November 6th, 2005

Steaming Monkeys

Yesterday a neurophysiologist gave a talk here at Berkeley, on their usual subject of the correlation of electrical activity of a neuron in Macaque cortex with some thing or another. While the audience walked in, the speaker had a short movie of a wild Macaque sitting contently in a hot spring with snows all around, […]

Friday, November 4th, 2005

Frans de Waal – Chimpanzee Politics (2)

Ein Klassiker der Primatenforschung, und faszinierender Einblick in die seelische Verfassung unserer nächsten Verwandten. Ein Gutteil dieser Faszination speist sich daraus, dass trotz aller Parallelen zu menschlichem Verhalten die Gefühlswelt und das Verhalten der Schimpansen von anderen Prinzipien regiert werden als unsere, die Tiere uns aber ähnlich genug sind, dass wir ihnen die dem äusseren […]

Friday, November 4th, 2005

Jigsaw Pieces

1 Netflix, the company that revolutionized DVD renting, just settled a class action lawsuit brought by one of their customers. The lawyers the cutomer hired argued that Netflix’ advertising was misleading. Netflix denied, but agreed to pay $2000 to the claimant, give every member of the class, i.e. every customer, a free month of upgraded […]

Tuesday, November 1st, 2005

Networking, Not Working?

I’m growing increasingly weary of people linking to Amazon for books they want to recommend. Shouldn’t there be a website where people can search books online and then order them at their neighbourhood independent bookstore? buchhandel.de does this for german books, but a quick search unearthed nothing similar for the american market. The closest match […]

Tuesday, November 1st, 2005

On a Monkey’s Back

One of Frans de Waal’s objectives in publishing his Chimpanzee Politics in 1982 was to destroy the notion that only us humans are capable of complex social behaviour and congition, and that we are not so special after all. It was, I believe, mainly advocating a recasting of social human psychology in terms of primate […]