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Chris Dolan
Works at Sony Creative Software
Attended University of Wisconsin-Madison
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Chris Dolan

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This is a remarkable advancement in genetic engineering. We're living in a sci-fi story!
TED Talk Subtitles and Transcript: CRISPR gene drives allow scientists to change sequences of DNA and guarantee that the resulting edited genetic trait is inherited by future generations, opening up the possibility of altering entire species forever. More than anything, the technology has led to questions: How will this new power affect humanity? What are we going to use it to change? Are we gods now? Join journalist Jennifer Kahn as she ponders ...
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Best of luck
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Very interesting video of this new transmission technology. The part I found most interesting in the presentation was the mention of feedback, where this design has very low backlash so it's easier to detect when the system is experiencing greater resistance (like running into something!)

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This is very interesting: as more cell users have access to LTE, the LTE networks are becoming more crowded, which may explain decreases in LTE speeds.

In retrospect, I may have witnessed this myself when Sprint first lit up their LTE towers in Madison in Nov 2013 and I got on almost immediately. I noticed that it was really really fast at the time, but recall being less thrilled a year later. I never actually measured the LTE bandwidth carefully so I'm not sure this was a true cause or if I'm imagining a pattern in the noise...
While the US LTE capacity has remained relatively constant over the last 12 months, the number of users, as well as the bandwidth consumed per user via video and music streaming, video calls, and real-time entertainment like Netflix has resulted in an overall slowdown of LTE across the network.
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Ha, I found my old post:

Looks like it was Dec 2013, and it was 4 Mbps at the time which puts it above the average 2016 LTE speed for big cities nationwide, from the chart in the linked twinprime article
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Spoiler answer: perhaps not mass-extinction deadly, at least in terms of ground-level ozone, but still really bad (about 10 ppb vs. a lethal level of 30 ppb for ozone)
How Deadly Would a Nearby Gamma Ray Burst Be?

Gamma ray bursts (GRBs) are the brightest electromagnetic blasts known to occur in the Universe, and can originate from the collapse of the most massive types of stars or from the collision of two neutron stars. Supernovae are stellar explosions that also can send harmful radiation hurtling towards Earth. Both GRBs and supernovae are usually observed in distant galaxies, but can pose a threat if they occur closer to home, where they can strip the Earth’s upper atmosphere of its protective ozone layer leaving life exposed to harmful ultraviolet radiation from the Sun.

A new paper, titled “Ground-Level Ozone Following Astrophysical Ionizing Radiation Events – An Additional Biological Hazard?” published in the journal Astrobiology took a look at the ramifications of a nearby GRB or supernova and the effects on life. The research was funded by the Exobiology and Evolutionary Biology element of the NASA Astrobiology Program.

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Beautiful picture.
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Cool, non-earthquake rifts caused by release of near-surface rock strain.
Interesting! I used to see things like this in the woods of Oconto and Shawano counties as a kid. 
In 2010, the people near Birch Creek, Michigan heard a boom and felt the earth rock. They woke up the next morning and found a huge crack in the ground. What caused it? A team of researchers finally believe they know.
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It is cool isn't it?
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"Observable Universe contains ten times more galaxies than previously thought!"
Astronomers using data from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescopes and other telescopes have performed an accurate census of the number of galaxies in the Universe. The group came to the surprising conclusion that there are at least 10 times as many galaxies in the observable Universe as previously thought. The results have clear implications for our understanding of galaxy formation, and also help solve an ancient astronomical paradox — why is the...
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I can't decide if this is a brilliant or a horrible idea. I'd feel bad for the people who live/work near where the bike is parked
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How do we prevent new mega-botnets composed of cheap internet devices? This is a really really important topic for the next decade and MJG has summarized the problem quite well. 1) you can't solve it via quality control, 2) you can't solve it by patching, 3) IP blacklisting via ISPs is one of the only remaining options but has huge collateral damage because ISPs can realistically just block at a whole-household/business granularity.

It seems to me that externally-managed routers in the households/small businesses of non-technical users could help. Evergreen router firmware could reduce vulnerabilities at the border, and handing fine-grained blacklist control to an expert service to block/filter individual devices as problems arise. That's an expensive solution and relies on adoption of such devices+services. But if MJG's idea of laws forcing ISPs to blacklist actually become reality, then customers may WANT such managed routers to minimize their risk of being completely shut off. Kind of an insurance policy against being implicated.
500,000 infected devices is enough to create a botnet capable of crippling the internet. There's over 8 billion IoT devices. We're not going to fix this by inspecting devices at the border or forcing recalls.
A large part of the internet became inaccessible today after a botnet made up of IP cameras and digital video recorders was used to DoS a major DNS provider. This highlighted a bunch of things including how maybe having all your DNS handled by a single provider is not the best of plans, ...
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Best quote:

To get his hands on the pathogens, Moore contacted James Gern. He knew that Gern has gathered rhinoviruses from his patients for over two decades in order to do research on colds.

“We probably have one of the world’s biggest collections of kid snot,” said Gern.
Fifty years ago, scientists tried and failed to make a vaccine for the common cold. Now they're back at it. Here's my story on their efforts for Stat.
After decades of disappointment and resignation, a handful of research groups are making advances in developing potential cold vaccines.
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Yes do it alone.
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"Town Crank" -- I love it! :-)
Yesterday, I attended training (required this year) for poll workers in my town of Carlisle, MA. Many towns and states need more poll workers this year to support early voting; any citizen is encouraged to volunteer. I encourage everyone to volunteer for similar service: you too can be part of what makes our elections "trustable". We expect turn out to be very heavy, and the town has enlisted extra ballot counters, so we can count the vote as quickly as feasible.

I particularly like my town's methodology. We still use paper ballots, and nice old ballot boxes.

So we have a paper trail from beginning to end of the process. Hacking voting machines won't affect our results.

Our boxes in Carlisle look slightly different than these, with a groove on the slot you slide your ballot paper in, and a poll worker then operates the box that takes the ballot with cranks on the side that make a cheery "ding" when a ballot is cranked into the box (incrementing a counter).

And best of all, the operator of the ballot box has the title of "Town Crank". I aspire to this title. :-)
All communities in the state are required to use paper ballots, and 65 towns still count the ballots by hand.
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I strongly agree with Brad's message here. We have plenty of traffic laws already, and don't need to invent new problems.
Now even Barack Obama has weighed in on the robocar "who should I kill" trolley problem. Here's why he shouldn't. 
I had hoped I was done ranting about our obsession with what robocars will do in no-win “who do I hit?” situations, but this week, even Barack Obama in his interview with Wired opined on the issue, prompted by my friend Joi Ito from the MIT Media Lab. (The Media Lab recently ran a misleading ...
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This is a fascinating animation, sped up from reality by a factor of 600000x
Protostar and Nebula LRLL-54361
"I never get tired of these intimate looks into dusty nebulae facilitated by the wonder of infrared photography. This is a single-channel (monochrome) near-infrared image of an object suspected to be a binary protostar. The actual protostar is located about 1/3 of the way from the top of the image centered horizontally."

Note: The animation plays fast, but the light actually took 23 days to go that far!

All channels: WFC3 / IR F160W
North is NOT up. It is 15.84° counter-clockwise from up.

Credit: Judy Schmidt
Release Date: October 7, 2016

+Spitzer Space Telescope 
+NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory 

#Astronomy #Space #Science #Nebula #Protostar #Infrared #Astrophotography #Art #Cosmos #Universe #Spitzer #Telescope #JPL #Caltech #UnitedStates #STEM #Education #Animation #GIF
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Chris's Collections
programmer, cyclist, gamer, former astronomer
Bragging rights
#1 Google result for "constellations"; Toughest bicycle ride: 125 miles + 11,000 ft climbing
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison
    Astronomy, PhD, 1994 - 2000
  • Cornell University
    Astronomy, 1990 - 1994
  • Derryfield School
    1986 - 1990
Programmer, software architect
  • Sony Creative Software
    Staff Software Engineer, 2012 - present
  • Avid Technology
    Sr Principal Software Engineer, 2007 - 2012
  • Clotho Advanced Media
    Sr Software Developer, 2001 - 2007
  • Univ Wisconsin, Astronomy Dept
    Research Assistant, 1994 - 2000