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Boris Borcic
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Boris Borcic

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"Clownfish became a household name over a decade ago when Disney released the movie "Finding Nemo."
Found exclusively in the Indo-Pacific, clownfish are symbiotic animals that only live in sea anemones, a close relative of corals that don't have a hard outer shell. The anemone provides a home and protection for the clownfish, while the clownfish provides food for the anemone.
As global concern grows for Australia's Great Barrier Reef - which is experiencing the worst bleaching event in its history due to sustained high ocean temperatures amid a strong El Nino weather pattern - University of Delaware researcher Danielle Dixson has co-authored a paper demonstrating how vulnerable clownfish are to the increased frequency of bleaching events".

(Posted by +rasha kamel​)
Clownfish became a household name over a decade ago when Disney released the movie "Finding Nemo."
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Whistler, an app dedicated to helping activists and citizen reporters

Initially built for the Android operating system, Whistler will be designed with functions that allow for the easy dissemination of photos, video and audio; as well as secure communications among activists, NGOs, and journalists locally and internationally; access to training resources on digital safety and non-violent activism; and finally a “panic button” that will alert an individual’s social network securely in the event of an arrest, detention, or extreme surveillance. The button will also act as a data shredder, and provide geo-location updates in case an activist is brought to a black site (one that’s off the grid and not officially sanctioned, but where security forces typically disappear political agitators). “What we are talking about with Nico is trying to find out about the needs of people in oppressed societies and what technology can offer them,” says Popović of Whistler’s mission.
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Logic hacking

In mathematics, unlike ordinary life, the boundary between the knowable and the unknowable is a precisely defined thing.   But finding it isn't easy.  Its exact location could itself  be unknowable.  But we don't even know that! 

This month, a bunch of 'logic hackers' have stepped up to the plate and made a lot of progress.  They've sharpened our estimate of where this boundary lies.  How?   By writing shorter and shorter computer programs for which it's unknowable whether these programs run forever, or stop.

A Turing machine is a simple kind of computer whose inner workings have N different states, for some number N = 1,2,3,...

The Busy Beaver Game is to look for the Turing machine with N states that runs as long as possible before stopping.  Machines that never stop are not allowed in this game. 

We know the winner of the Busy Beaver Game for N = 1,2,3 and 4.  Already for N = 5, the winner is unknown.  The best known contestant is a machine that runs for 47,176,870 steps before stopping.  There are 43 machines that might or might not stop - we don't know. 

When N is large enough, the winner of the Busy Beaver Game is unknowable

More precisely, if you use the ordinary axioms of mathematics, it's impossible to prove that any particular machine with N states is the winner of the Busy Beaver Game... as long as those axioms are consistent.

How big must N be, before we hit this wall?

We don't know. 

But earlier this month, Adam Yedidia and Scott Aaronson showed that it's 7910 or less. 

And by now, thanks to a group of logic hackers like Stefan O’Rear, we know it's 1919 or less. 

So, the unknowable kicks in - the winner of the Busy Beaver Game for N-state Turing machines becomes unknowable using ordinary math - somewhere between N = 5 and N = 1919. 

The story of how we got here is is fascinating, and you can read about it on my blog post:

https://johncarlosbaez.wordpress.com/2016/05/21/the-busy-beaver-game/

Anything that I didn't make clear here, should be explained there.  If it ain't clear there, ask me!

#bigness  
This month, a bunch of ‘logic hackers’ have been seeking to determine the precise boundary between the knowable and the unknowable. The challenge has been around for a long time. But on…
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More of the Stretched Model

This continues my first post about a stretched model of the hyperbolic plane: plus.google.com/+RoiceNelson/posts/ESxR6WRvS9z

I've added pictures of various hyperbolic tilings (like the {4,∞} below) to the album: goo.gl/photos/QZvK9FyJQp1jGTbd9

I've also been able to reason out some properties of this model.

- Geodesics are half-hyperbolas with a center at the origin.
- Lines through the origin are degenerate hyperbolas and are geodesic as well.
- Hyperbolic circles with finite radius appear as circles if origin-centered, or ellipses otherwise.
- Horocycles are parabolas.

But perhaps the most useful feature of this model is that equidistant curves are also equidistant in the euclidean sense! For example, take a geodesic and simply offset it to or away from the origin and you have an equidistant curve of the hyperbolic plane. This also explains my observation in the first post that tile widths appeared to remain constant even though stretched in the radial direction.

This property makes sense if you think about how the {4,4} tiling looks in the fisheye model of euclidean geometry, like here: goo.gl/photos/WzSJhLfVb1egZBPX7

Interpreted as a hyperbolic pattern in the Poincaré disk rather than a euclidean tiling in the fisheye model, those are a bunch of equidistant curves. When exploded out to the entire complex plane, they become equidistant in the euclidean sense as well.

We need a better name for this model!

By the way, if you apply circle inversion to the images in this model, there are some lovely results. The hyperbolas turn into lemniscates. But that's another album for another day.
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Optimize your health by being informed while you are well.

No one wants to get/stay sick but you don't want excessive care either. Medicine is an applied science, the art part is patient communication. Medical doctors are not infallible but a good doctor has studied and learned about human bodies in a way that is difficult to do casually. Plus they don't base treatment on their body but yours.

Up your risk assessment game.
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Wildfire in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada View VII

And again the clouds were gone, making it possible to get another recent view of the Fort McMurray wildfires in Alberta, Canada, taken May 23rd, 2016 by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aboard the Terra satellite. The wildfires are still burning, spreading across northern Alberta and into Saskatchewan. They already affected 522,892 hectares, including 2,496 hectares in Saskatchewan. In total 16 wildfires are burning in the region, with one still being out of control.

Top image is showing natural colors, bottom image is a false-color infrared image, burn scars showing up in darker reds, active fires in bright red/orange.

More information here:
http://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=41701E7ECBE35-AD48-5793-1642C499FF0DE4CF
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Fort_McMurray_wildfire
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=87985
http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=87992

More images here:
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/ZmQjNHLF3Hd
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/cCFuwbnYFDZ
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/chbXed1d6bB
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/fCgm4izGRwV
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/cry3uDLibDw
https://plus.google.com/+PierreMarkuse/posts/bhSUvg3ZNar

The area on Google maps:
https://goo.gl/NO9vIf

Terra (EOS AM-1) satellite

The Terra satellite is part of the Earth Observing System (EOS, https://goo.gl/XYed36), its Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) can take measurements in 36 spectral bands ranging in wavelength from 0.4 µm to 14.4 µm, another MODIS instrument is orbiting Earth aboard the Aqua satellite.

More on the Terra satellite and the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) here:
http://terra.nasa.gov/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terra_(satellite)
http://modis.gsfc.nasa.gov/about/design.php

Image credit: Terra MODIS images, accessed through NASA Worldview (https://worldview.earthdata.nasa.gov/) / Processed by +Pierre Markuse 

#science #wildfire #fortmcmurray #alberta #saskatchewan #canada #fire #terra #modis #earth #space #satelliteimages #spacetechnology 
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From stereographic projection to sphere inversion
I learned a while ago that a #stereographic projection of the Riemann sphere on the plane can be viewed as a #sphere inversion in a sphere 2X as big as the Riemann sphere. But that means that you can generalise to projecting bumpy 3D objects rather than just the Riemann sphere, obtaining a bumpy landsacpe rather than the complex plane.

This particular shape is a "uniformised hyperbolic dodecahedron". That is, the Gaussian curvature has been made constant everywhere (by a circle packing algorithm) except in the 12 cusps, where 10 triangles  with 18 degrees angle meet. At the cusps there is positive Gaussian curvature, so that the rest of the surface has constant negative Gaussian curvature.
The sphere inversion has been adapted a bit so the inversion sphere coincides with 3 cusp. The resulting picture has been rendered so that it looks a bit like #Philae on comet Churyumov–Gerasimenko
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The Unnecessariat

"Here’s the thing: from where I live, the world has drifted away. We aren’t precarious, we’re unnecessary. The money has gone to the top. The wages have gone to the top. The recovery has gone to the top. And what’s worst of all, everybody who matters seems basically pretty okay with that."

And so parts of the precariat have drifted into a state where their financial means are not only as precarious as ever, but in which there is also a dawning realization that this is it. There will be no change, and there is no hope.

And so you blow your welfare on drugs & vodka. And if your liver gives up when you are 55, then so be it. It doesn't matter anyway.

If these people would be younger, they would throw bombs.
I remember AIDS. I’m older than you probably think I am, and I remember what AIDS in America meant in the eighties, when William F. Buckley suggested all “carriers” be tattooed, a…
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Only #Berniesanders and a #PoliticalRevolution can save us! We have the resources for All we also have greedy criminal #Megalomaniacs running the #World!!!

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The question of whether or not climate change is real is rapidly becoming less urgent than what can be done to alleviate the human suffering it is causing.

#ClimateChangeAdaptation
A record-breaking heat wave in Rajasthan reveals how badly we lack the necessary infrastructure to cope with the human suffering climate change is already causing.
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20/24 Quantum Mechanics - The Physics of the Microscopic World. Episode 20: Quantum Cryptography

https://vimeo.com/167864973

Quantum Mechanics: The Physics of the Microscopic World
24 lectures, 30 minutes per lecture, taught by Ptof. Benjamin Schumacher, Kenyon College Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin
Course Lecture Titles
1. The Quantum Enigma
2. The View from 1900
3. Two Revolutionaries: Planck and Einstein
4. Particles of Light, Waves of Matter
5. Standing Waves and Stable Atoms
6. Uncertainty
7. Complementarity and the Great Debate
8. Paradoxes of Interference
9. States, Amplitudes, and Probabilities
10. Particles That Spin
11. Quantum Twins
12. The Gregarious Particles
13. Antisymmetric and Antisocial
14. The Most Important Minus Sign in the World
15. Entanglement
16. Bell and Beyond
17. All the Myriad Ways
18. Much Ado about Nothing
19. Quantum Cloning
20. Quantum Cryptography
21. Bits, Qubits, and Ebits
22. Quantum Computers
23. Many Worlds or One?
24. The Great Smoky Dragon
Quantum Mechanics: The Physics of the Microscopic World 24 lectures, 30 minutes per lecture, taught by Ptof. Benjamin Schumacher, Kenyon College Ph.D., The University…
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geneva ch
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hope achieves the square root of the impossible
Introduction
Born a twin and somewhat later, first distracted of girls by computers with ram capacity in the kilobytes range; that is, truly parsimonious computers.

Former Taglines

Dark energy is relic pollution from warp drives! Solve two cosmic mysteries - the Fermi Paradox and Dark Energy - by each other. Transpose the AGW issue to the Universe, to defuse the illusion we can turn our back on the problem by moving to exoplanets. Make fun of Dark Energy etc having inspired the possibility of warp drives, by assuming cosmic history has already articulated both together, but in reverse order.

Does God Sexist? - The misogyny of many religious texts and traditions, entangles the matter of affirming God with that of affirming misogyny.

Ambiguities are like microbes: the pathogens steal attention! - most people will equate microbes with the tiny fraction of pathogens, and will ignore in particular the helpful microbes without which we wouldn't even survive. I claim a similar situation applies to ambiguities, even more remote from awareness.
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