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Posts

July 25, 2014

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6:56 PM | Statshot: SUVs, HIV and Must-See TV
Sport utility vehicles and crossovers have become the most popular car body type in America. New HIV diagnoses have dropped more than 30% in the U.S. since 2002. Over the past few years, several television dramas have cracked a rating of 9 on IMDb’s crowdsourced rating scale—none of them on network TV.
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6:12 PM | Foundation announces 2014 Investigators in the Mathematical Modeling of Living Systems
The Simons Foundation congratulates the awardees who have been selected as Simons Investigators in 2014 in the mathematical modeling of living systems. The Simons Investigators program provides a stable base of support for outstanding scientists, enabling them to undertake long-term study of fundamental questions.
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5:22 PM | How does one evaluate evidence in complex circumstances
So this is Joseph, the rarely appearing co-blogger and I wanted to comment on an evidence question. There has been a lot of discussion about a recent DC court of appeals case (Halbig).  The essence of the argument is that there is a sentence in the law that could be read as only allowing state exchanges to offer federal subsidies.  I think it is pretty clear everyone agree that this isn't the pinnacle of clear and artful writing.  Either it failed to make a major piece of the law […]
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4:29 PM | Happy Birthday, Paul's Boutique! (hat tip Joshua Heller)
Twenty five years ago today, the last great example of an artform destroyed by the Disney copywrite regime.The band members are still being sued for the sampling. I was going to post one of the videos from the album, but MCA would have preferred the video at right.
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3:48 PM | Listen to the premiere of “A Man from the Future”
I could have sworn we posted about the fact the Pet Shop Boys were writing some music about Alan Turing, but I can’t find anything in the archives. Anyway, the Pet Shop Boys have written a piece of music “inspired by codebreaker Alan Turing”, titled A Man from the Future (not The Man from the Future, the 2011... Read more »
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2:40 PM | Americans’ Immigration Concerns Jump, as Economic Worries Decline
As attention increasingly shifts toward undocumented immigrants crossing into the U.S. and political pressure mounts for the federal government to stabilize the U.S.-Mexico border, nearly one in six Americans named immigration the country’s biggest problem in a recent Gallup poll.
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2:06 PM | Privacy, Chastisement and Biopower
I’m teaching a course on privacy and surveillance this fall, and one of the things I’ve been doing is reading up on aspects of privacy theory that I didn’t know much about, such as the feminist critique of privacy. The basic feminist argument is that “family privacy” has been historically...
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1:13 PM | Who Owns What in Organic Packaged Foods
The consolidation of the food industry spares no quarter, including brands that are known for their small size and independence. Large food-processing companies are buying up organic brands, as the market for products made without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers continues to grow.
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12:00 PM | Paper about widely touted but unapproved “cure” for cancer, autism retracted
A paper about a protein being used — unapproved by health agencies — to treat diseases including cancer and autism has been retracted. Here’s the notice from the International Journal of Cancer about a 2007 paper purporting to show that the substance, GcMAF, is useful against breast cancer: This article has been retracted at the […]
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11:30 AM | This not an outlier; this is a business model
You may have this recording a customer made while trying to cancel his Comcast service. Here's a sample:Block: We’d like to disconnect please.Comcast rep: Why is it that you don’t want the faster speed? Help me understand why you don’t want faster internet.Block: Help me understand why you can’t disconnect us.Comcast rep: Because my job is to have a conversation with you about keeping your service, about finding out why it is that you’re looking to cancel the service.Block: I don’t […]
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7:22 AM | Got Water? (part n)
Shocking report here on how bad the California ground water situation is to go along with the terrible drought conditions. Groundwater is the only thing keeping California afloat, so to speak, through the last 3 consecutive years of drought.
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7:16 AM | Experiences at a PhD Interview at TIFR-CAM
  This is the record of my interview held at TIFR Bangalore on 20th March'14 for Integrated program in Mathematics. So this was my second time at TIFR Bangalore ,last year I could not get through! This time I prepared much harder, mainly I did Real Analysis and I had more experience this time since Read more
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7:14 AM | Experiences at an PhD interview at IISc Bangalore
This is the record of my interview at IISc Bangalore for Integrated PhD program in Mathematics which took place on 28th May. So I was called at 2pm there and since I was 10th on the list my turn came at 6pm , I was little nervous and excited too. So the panel comprised of Read more
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7:11 AM | Experiences at an NBHM MSc Scholarship Interview
Hi, this is record of my Interview held in month of Nov'13 for NBHM MSc Scholarship. After clearing the written exam held in Sept'13 I was called to appear for Interview at Punjab University. The written exam was easy and  I did all problems in Analysis , and I think my score was 22/30. Since Read more
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5:00 AM | Infinitifs
Cent soixante-dix verbes à l'infinitif décrivant l'activité d'une mathématicienne. - Billets des habitués
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2:00 AM | Juillet, 4ème défi
Chaque semaine, un défi du calendrier mathématique 2014... - Défis du Calendrier Mathématique 2014 / Carrousel

July 24, 2014

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8:14 PM | $2.4 Billion, 29 Million Cars: The Numbers Behind GM’s Year of Recalls
GM's latest financial report breaks down the cost of the company's embarrassing string of recalls this year, with almost $700 million spend on the ignition switch problem alone.
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8:07 PM | Foundation Announces the 2014 Simons Investigators
The Simons Foundation congratulates the awardees who have been selected as Simons Investigators in 2014 in mathematics, theoretical physics, theoretical computer science, and the mathematical modeling of living systems. The Simons Investigators program provides a stable base of support for outstanding scientists, enabling them to undertake long-term study of fundamental questions.
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4:02 PM | Alan Turing on Stage and Screen
It was a big week for Alan Turing dramatizations. On Monday, the UK and US trailers for the Turing biopic The Imitation Game, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, were released, and on Wednesday, the 102nd anniversary of Turing’s birth, the Pet Shop … Continue reading →
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3:00 PM | “Lack of experience and understanding” forces duplication retractions of liver cancer paper
A group of researchers in China has lost their paper on liver cancer after the first author admitted to duplication, also known, inelegantly, as self-plagiarism. The paper, “Glycyrrhetinic acid-modified chitosan nanoparticles enhanced the effect of 5-fluorouracil in murine liver cancer model via regulatory T-cells,” appeared in the July 2013 issue of the Journal of Drug […]
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2:26 PM | Hilary Putnam doesn't give an eff about the Oxford Comma
A couple of times I've co-written with people who don't use the Oxford comma. It can end up being a big headache when the usage isn't consistent, and then it's also weird to realize just how many times you conjoin three or more words in a phrase. Putnam's book came...
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2:12 PM | Standards are Tighter, Sure. But is It Really That Hard to Get A Mortgage?
It has become a common refrain: “It’s too hard to get a mortgage.” But is it true?
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1:54 PM | Osculating the curve…
In the process of writing an article on curvature we got entirely distracted by making a geogebra worksheet showing the tangent, normal and osculating circle to any smooth function. The meaning and mathematics of all these terms is revealed in this article, but if you fancy getting your hands dirty yourself, have a play with the worksheet below. Please post your favourite function as a comment – the curvier and wigglier the better! read more
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1:02 PM | 50 visions of mathematics - Climbing around a fractal
Bat country. Image designed by Gwen Fisher, engineered by Paul Brown. © Gwen Fisher.read more
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1:00 PM | I started to go with "arsonists decry fires, call for more kerosene" but that didn't capture the full disconnect
Perhaps I just haven't spent enough time in the trenches, but I don't think I've ever seen a response to a corruption scandal quite this. As the Detroit Free Press lays out in painful detail, over the past few years, the cash-strapped state of Michigan appears to have lost hundreds of millions to overcharging, mismanagement and plain old graft in the charter school sector.This is largely the result of initiatives pushed through by Gov. Rick Snyder and former Gov. John Engler, two […]
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12:30 PM | Incorrect analysis leads to Nature’s sixth retraction in 2014
In what seems to be an example of researchers swiftly and transparently correcting the literature, and acknowledging errors, a pair of scientists have retracted a 2013 paper from Nature. Here’s the retraction notice for “Genomic organization of human transcription initiation complexes,” by Bryan Venters and Frank Pugh: We reported the presence of degenerate versions of […]
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11:03 AM | An Alan Turing expert watches the “The Imitation Game” trailer
We weren’t sure quite what to think about the recntly-released trailer for The Imitation Game. We don’t know enough about either films or Alan Turing to give an authoritative opinion. James Grime, on the other hand, knows a lot about both… The trailer for the highly anticipated new film about mathematician Alan Turing was released this... Read more »
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9:02 AM | Kissing the curve
Rachel Thomas From a smile to a line drawing by Picasso, curves bring great beauty to our world. But how curvy is a curve? From a smile to a line drawing by Picasso, curves bring great beauty to our world. Curves are also a beautiful and important part of mathematics and understanding curvature can shed light not just on […]
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7:31 AM | My notes on Khan Academy's SAT prep at You Do the Math
This is a work in progress so we should cut the Khan Academy some slack. Even with that in mind, though, I'm seriously underwhelmed by the SAT prep materials up so far. I know their heart is in the right place, but from the skimpy selection to the low wattage instruction, there's just not that much here.I address the subject in more detail at the teaching site, You Do the Math, but I don't hit the bigger concern that I keep running into with these online learning ventures. As far as I can […]
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12:11 AM | One quote that tells you everything you need to about Florida's culture of charter school oversight
From the Sun-Sentinel's previously mentioned profile of Steve Gallon III [emphasis added].The schools’ financial team began to caution the boards against overspending, flag certain payments, and raise concerns about Gallon’s seemingly unchecked authority.“I started warning board members,” said [Katrina] Lunsford, the financial manager.She also said: “He, from an overall standpoint, just started taking charge and taking over.”Records show the boards at times responded with […]
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