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Chris Dolan
1,285 followers -
programmer, cyclist, gamer, former astronomer
programmer, cyclist, gamer, former astronomer

1,285 followers
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I'm very impressed by +Scott Dolan's arguments to the Maine Supreme Court last week. I listened to the audio recording of the hearing (linked from the article) and tried to imagine myself in the same scenario.

http://scottddolan.com/?p=196

Also interesting, this hearing was held in a high school auditorium with many students spectating. Apparently Maine does this regularly (annually?). Letting kids witness the day-to-day of government is a great idea.
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I still love Perl for simply getting stuff done!

My email provider is turning off catch-all email addresses on Monday, and just allowing automatic name+string@example.com forwarding to name@example.com instead. They also allow you to bulk-edit a manual list of forwarding addresses.

For as long as I've owned chrisdolan.net, I've been using chris.foo@ instead of chris+foo@ as my pattern for throwaway email addresses. Gotta fix all those. Should I go to every website and try to change my email address? You've got to be kidding...

So, Perl to the rescue! I grepped through my many gigabytes of email folders and password files pulling out every string that matched .*@chrisdolan.net and then wrote a whole bunch of filters to remove spurious prefixes and de-duplicate the results. That led to a final list of roughly 400 email addresses that I added to my host's forwarding list. Grand total, 45 lines of code and a handful of commandlines.

I should probably whittle the forwarding list further by hand (like digg@ -- I haven't used Digg in a reeeeally long time) but no urgency.
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The part of this article I liked the most was the idea of an "eyeball planet":

"One type of possible water world is an “eyeball” planet, where the star-facing side is able to maintain a liquid-water ocean, while the rest of the surface is ice. (Image via eburacum45/DeviantArt)"
Marc Kaufman
Marc Kaufman
manyworlds.space
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Wow! This animation is amazing
The more things change, the more they stay the same. Here's an Earth-observing satellite view of thirty years of flowing changes for Bangladesh's Padma River from 1988 to early in 2018. The Landsat missions provides satellite images creating the longest-running record of Earth's many changes. Take a look: https://go.nasa.gov/2MSr69B
Animated Photo
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Great article on the history and future of Ethernet
"If you've ever looked at the network cable protruding from your computer and wondered how Ethernet got started, how it has lasted so long, and how it works, wonder no more: here's the story."
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I did not work on this paper at all, but this is what my immediate team works on at Google (four of the paper authors are based in Madison). I'm really proud to be part of this fantastic team!

The paper is quite readable considering how complex the technology is :-)
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Haha, this is great! The authors simulate the future trajectory of the interplanetary Tesla roadster and conclude "we estimate the probability of a collision with Earth and Venus over the next one million years to be 6% and 2.5%, respectively. We estimate the dynamical lifetime of the Tesla to be a few tens of millions of years."

A complication is that the space-car will make a close pass by Earth in 2091, which makes its orbital path hard to extrapolate accurately past that point.

h/t +Christopher De Vries
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Wow, the Telegram app was vulnerable (now fixed) to a Unicode-related bug where it was tricked into displaying left-to-right text as right-to-left.

Example:
Actual filename: ♦fdp.61-10-8102-NOISICED.DRAOB.EVITUC.EXE
Displayed filename: EXE.CUTIVE.BOARD.DECISION-2018-01-16.pdf

I'm sure Telegram is not unique in being vulnerable to an attack like that!
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Great article about the size of moons of the minor bodies in our solar system. Cool details: 1) the animation that shows Pluto and Charon co-orbiting, 2) it's easy to forget that mass generally goes as the cube of size - the Moon is 25% of Earth diameter but only about 1% of Earth's mass, 3) the mocked up graphic of relative sizes of the moons of Pluto, Eris and Orcus is cool, 4) the fact that Eris is nearly the same size as Pluto justifies (in my opionion) the demotion of Pluto from planet status.
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Google's Madison office has a bunch of openings for talented/experienced software engineers. Not all of them are listed on the careers page yet. If you have deep experience with network, storage, or database software feel free to reach out to me.

We also have a Verilog/ASIC design opening that is publicly posted. Several of the authors of this paper are in the Madison office, notably. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0Bx4hafXDDq2EMzRNcy1vSUxtcEk/view
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