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Tim Ng
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Python:

"foobar"[::] = "foobar"
"foobar"[0:6:] = "foobar"
"foobar"[0:6:1] = "foobar"
"foobar"[0:6:-1] = ""
"foobar"[6:0:-1] = "raboo"
"foobar"[7:0:-1] = "raboo"
"foobar"[::-1] = "raboof"

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In the last week there have been a number of "cheap" improvements to Zhang's recent result that there are infinitely many pairs of primes of distance at most 70,000,000 apart; by modifying the "easy" part of his argument, this bound has been reduced to 63.374.611 (Lewko), 59.874.594 (Trudgian), and now 59.470.640 (Morrison).  

Basically, what Zhang really shows is that if H is any set of 3,500,000 integers with the property that H avoids at least one residue class mod p for each prime p, then there are infinitely many translates of H that contain at least two primes, and hence there are infinitely many pairs of primes of distance at most diam(H) apart; all the above "easy" improvements come from being a little more clever as to how to select H.  If you want to get a brief chance to claim the "world record" for the best bound on small prime gaps, this could be an opportunity.  (Of course, the ultimately more interesting challenge is to improve the 3,500,000 in Zhang's result, preferably with some powerful new ideas...)

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Our colleagues in Theoretical Computer Science have decided to start their own seminar series inspired by Q+ called TCS+.  Note, this is theoretical computer science in general, not just quantum.  We wish them the best of luck and hope that this model spreads to many other subjects.  If you are interested, join the TCS+ community, read the announcement http://mycqstate.wordpress.com/2013/01/27/tcs-online-seminars/ and visit their website plustcs

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fun with graphs

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Why secure hashing algorithms are not secure for passwords:

 http://arstechnica.com/security/2012/08/passwords-under-assault/4/

Remember to use a hashing algorithm meant for passwords.

And don't forget to add a pinch of salt.

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deep
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