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03 November 2012

Weekend Reading

Wired explains how large manufacturers test their products until failure and why this is important. I liked that it was essentially the cutting edge battle that's going on at large design and mass manufacturing companies - it's Henry Ford circa 2012.

Scientists think that the invention of cooking led to our ability to have large brains. That is, brains need a lot of energy, roughly 20% of all the food you eat goes to your brain. To support this "expensive tissue"cooking is essentially predigesting your food and allowing you to eat more of it.

Unlike most people who want funding for NASA, equitable taxes, and a strong social safety net, I like guns. Normally I don't link to stuff like this but this is the perfect case where maybe the guy shouldn't have shot, and more specifically this is the sort of incident where in court the shooter gets off because it occurred in his home. But the world isn't black and white and to me the who case seems a little bit like entrapment. It seems like he lured the guy there and was waiting. Everyone can sense it, even his cop dad, but Montana is extremely conservative; hell, the law protecting the shooter is called the Castle Doctrine.

All about wood veneer and terminology for my design friends.

The largest photo of the Milky Way that has ever been made was taken the other day.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics apparently keeps stats on strip club workers. They make a lot more than most people in the medical profession.

The account of a heroin addict during Hurricane Katrina. Just wow.

Scientists have a new theory regarding the best way to look for alien life; makes sense to me. The article references the Wow! Signal. I read the Wiki article... um? It's not conclusive but I mean, damn. Seems to me like somethings trying to contact us.

I really want one of these Float Desks from Human Scale. I saw one at NeoCon and they worked really well. Unfortunately they cost about $1800, and yes I'd build my own top.

I've long had an uneasy relationship with Apple. I both admire their products and design but loath how they cast a spell over consumers who are led to believe that Apple invented everything and their products are the best. In the UK Apple lost a court case against Samsung and was ordered to issue what was essentially an admission of error/apology to Samsung on Apple's website. Apple, of course, did it in a snide way so the judge ordered them to rewrite it and up the font size. Apple... they're like the smart, rich, talented, popular asshole of the tech industry.

Geo-tracking inhalers. The industrial design, the statistics it could provide, and how much it could potentially increase the well being of people afflicted with asthma are large. Things like this have been a soft nudge ever since smart phones became ubiquitous. I can only assume that in the coming years this will become more pervasive and inform countless other aspects of our lives.

An interesting alternative to one person one vote. You buy votes and each time you buy a vote the price increases by the square of the number of times you've bought. 1 = $1, 2 = $4, 3 = $9... Apparently it works well in experiments and most participants like it.

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