Tech President reminds us that one way to possibly figure out who will be a vice presidential pick is to watch the various contenders’ Wikipedia pages in the days before such an announcement is likely.
In 2008, as The Washington Post wrote at the time, “just hours before [Sen. John] McCain declared his veep choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, her Wiki page saw a flurry of activity, with editors adding details about her approval rating and husband’s employment. … Palin’s entry was updated at least 68 times, with at least an additional 54 changes made to her entry over the preceding five days.”
Meanwhile, the Post said, “on Aug. 22, the day before the Obama campaign officially named [then-Sen. Joe] Biden as the veep pick, Biden’s Wiki page garnered roughly 40 changes. Over the five days prior, users would make at least 111 other changes to his entry.”
The obvious — in hindsight — implications of the Wiki activity: Aides were going into the entries to tune them up and clean out any material that was either embarrassing or erroneous.
So what’s going on now with some of those said to be among the leading possibilities to be joining Mitt Romney on the Republican ticket?
At the heart of Curiosity there is, of course, a computer. In this case the Mars rover is powered by a RAD750, a single-board computer (motherboard, RAM, ROM, and CPU) produced by BAE. The RAD750 has been on the market for more than 10 years, and it’s currently one of the most popular on-board computers for spacecraft. In Curiosity’s case, the CPU is a PowerPC 750 (PowerPC G3 in Mac nomenclature) clocked at around 200MHz — which might seem slow, but it’s still hundreds of times faster than, say, the Apollo Guidance Computer used in the first Moon landings. Also on the motherboard are 256MB of DRAM, and 2GB of flash storage — which will be used to store video and scientific data before transmission to Earth.
On the software side of things, NASA again stuck to tried-and-tested solutions, opting for the 27-year-old VxWorks operating system. VxWorks, developed by Wind River Systems (which was acquired by Intel), is a real-time operating system used in a huge number of embedded systems. The previous Mars rovers (Sojourner, Spirit, Opportunity), Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft all use VxWorks. VxWorks also powers BMW iDrive, the Apache Longbow helicopter, and the Apple Airport Extreme and Linksys WRT54G routers (really).
Two days after regaining consciousness from a massive stroke, Richard Marsh watched helplessly from his hospital bed as doctors asked his wife, Lili, whether they should turn off his life support machine.
Marsh, a former police officer and teacher, had strong views on that suggestion. The 60-year-old didn’t want to die. He wanted the ventilator to stay on. He was determined to walk out of the intensive care unit and he wanted everyone to know it.
But Marsh couldn’t tell anyone that. The medics believed he was in a persistent vegetative state, devoid of mental consciousness or physical feeling.
Nothing could have been further from the truth. Marsh was aware, alert and fully able to feel every touch to his body.
“I had full cognitive and physical awareness,” he said. “But an almost complete paralysis of nearly all the voluntary muscles in my body.”
I mean, come on, co-authors! I remember a time before the Internet where there was a mandatory 10 year waiting period before making jokes about tragedies. Oh, a bunch of people was just murdered? Let’s all laugh about it!
You people make me sikh.
“According to this article printed in tagesspiegel.de, not having a Facebook account could be the first sign that you are a mass murderer.(German) As examples they use Norwegian shooter Anders Breivik, who used MySpace instead of Facebook and the newer Aurora shooter who used adultfriendfinder instead of Facebook. They already consider those with Facebook accounts, who lack friends to be suspicious, but now they are suggesting that anyone who abstains from Facebook altogether may be even more suspicious.”>
Now that we’ve landed on Mars again, it’s a good moment to look back at this prediction:
And check out these mormons talking about this quote a few years back
Ten minutes after NASA posted a video of the Curiosity landing on Mars to its official YouTube channel, the video was taken down again, replaced with a message saying it had been removed due to a copyright claim by Scripps Local News. It’s not clear whether Scripps actually filed a takedown notice with YouTube or whether YouTube’s “content-match” system was triggered automatically because Scripps registered a clip of its own news footage, incorporating the NASA footage, with YouTube.
Either way, it points out the enormous asymmetry in copyright today, a shoot first, ask questions later presumption of guilt that results in the evidence of billions of dollars of uplifting, tax-funded spectacle being removed from public view because of the grasping and depraved indifference of industries that are programmed to deny the idea that copying can be controlled.