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San Francisco, USA

 

Solve Puzzle While You Are Sleeping

Monday my colleague reports a severe problem in our test system. I checked in some incomplete work and it breaks the test system. Strange that no QA has reported the problem even though the problem has originated one week ago. Nevertheless I fixed it right away. Then I moved on to other task without giving it much through.

But something does not seem right. Why was the problem not surfaced on the QA system? I was rather confused. Then it dawn on me what has happened. There was a series of confusions regarding the software branches and the timing of release. My fix was checked into a wrong branch. The QA is testing a version that's different from the version that's going to be deployed. My fix yesterday is actually going to break more things. And it will be deployed without properly tested!

The thought of this immediately wakes me up at night. I got out of bed to fix the problem around 6am.

Did I mention I was literally awaken? All the reasoning in the second paragraph appear to happen during my dream. I have straighten out a confusing sequence of events that explains the problem. The thought of serious consequence when deployed to production has waken me up. The first thing I do is to fix the problem right away. The second thing I do is to reflect on the strangeness of this. What was my brain doing when I was sleeping? Does a brain work in autopilot mode that resolved a problem I couldn't resolve during the day? Or perhaps I just couldn't relax and brought my day time problem into my sleep?

2011.11.29 [, ] - comments

 

Two Piece of Intriguing Science News

From crowdsourcing to crime-sourcing: The rise of distributed criminality - Just as legitimate business and public benefit from Internet based collaboration, criminals are increasingly using Internet to distribute operation to players all over the world. A credit card stealing operation can become a collaboration in a crime network of different specialities, like phishing, botnet rental (cloud computing?) and money laundering (financial services). Just as technologies revolutionizing our life, it is also empowering criminals.

Placebos Are Getting More Effective. Drugmakers Are Desperate to Know Why. Placebos are considered a statistical nuisance by drugmakers. A benchmark to beat to prove the effectiveness of drugs. Increasingly new drug testings are failing to do so. This article bring us back to the early days when the concept of placebo are first introduced. That was a watershed development in the science of pharmaceutical and it remain a gold standard to prove drug efficacy. These days scientist are intrigued by the apparent therapeutic effect of placebos. It begins to shed some light on the brain's own healing mechanisms and the mind body connection.

2011.11.03 [] - comments

 

Face Perception

I've learned some nugget today regarding face perception. These are some hacks to exploit humans' capability to recognize faces.

Robohash is a cool web service to generate unique robot image from any text. The robots look funny. But it is actually created for an excellent application to help quickly identify a caller from a large pool. The source code is available in github.

Robot
http://static1.robohash.com/tungwaiyip235345689cdef

• The project is inspired by Identicon. It has similar idea but uses geometric shapes to generate icons.

Chernoff faces, a visualization technique invented by Herman Chernoff, display multivariate data in the shape of a human face.

Chernoff Face

2011.07.22 [, ] - comments

 

past articles »

 

BBC News

 

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MH17 jet 'downed by shrapnel' (28 Jul 2014)

 

LA Clippers sale 'can go ahead' (28 Jul 2014)

 

Tripoli fuel fire 'out of control' (28 Jul 2014)

 

Russia plans Yukos appeal (28 Jul 2014)

 

AH5017 pilots 'asked to turn back' (28 Jul 2014)

 

Qatar 2022 'dismay' at workers' pay (28 Jul 2014)

 

Ferry students 'floated from cabins' (28 Jul 2014)

 

Nigerian state bans cars during Eid (28 Jul 2014)

 

Liberia shuts borders to curb Ebola (28 Jul 2014)

more »

 

Slashdot News for nerds, stuff that matters

 

Smoking Mothers May Alter the DNA of Their Children (2014-07-29T00:00:00Z)

 

OKCupid Experiments on Users Too (2014-07-28T23:15:00Z)

 

Samsung Delays Tizen Phone Launch (2014-07-28T22:33:00Z)

 

New Findings On Graphene As a Conductor With IC Components (2014-07-28T21:52:00Z)

 

The Misleading Fliers Comcast Used To Kill Off a Local Internet Competitor (2014-07-28T21:10:00Z)

 

A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World (2014-07-28T20:31:00Z)

 

A Credit Card-Sized, Arduino-Based Game Device (Video) (2014-07-28T19:50:00Z)

 

Ask Slashdot: Preparing an Android Tablet For Resale? (2014-07-28T19:07:00Z)

more »

 

TechPsychic Tech Rumors and Invented News

more »

 

SF Gate

 

Bay Area News (7 Jan 2012)

 

City Insider (11 Feb 2012)

 

Crime Scene (13 Feb 2012)

 

C.W Newius Column (10 Jan 2012)

 

C.W. Nevius Blog (11 Feb 2012)

 

Education News (10 Jan 2012)

 

KALW (11 Feb 2012)

 

Matier and Ross Blog (11 Feb 2012)

 

Ship traffic for July 28 (27 Jul 2014)

 

Mergers and acquisitions, July 28 (27 Jul 2014)

 

Bay Area insider trades, July 28 (27 Jul 2014)

 

Comcast pushing new modems too hard (27 Jul 2014)

 

Hackers stealing more sexual photos for extortion (27 Jul 2014)

 

Oculus Rift lets students take virtual tours of 5 colleges (27 Jul 2014)

more »

 

Asia Times Online

 

CRISIS IN UKRAINE A chessboard drenched in blood (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

The charge of the Atlanticist Brigade (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

JOHN PILGER Orwell alive in Palestine, Ukraine (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

Hardliners maneuver over Iran talks extension (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

How US policies sealed Iraq's fate (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

Losses mount in China loan fraud (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

 

THE BEAR'S LAIR World War I still bad news (Wed 23 Jul 2014 11:00:00 GMT)

more »

 


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