Recently in Technology Category
"In the summer of 1998, a strange press release made its way out to technology and music publications throughout the world. David Bowie, the legendary musician and cultural provocateur, would be launching his own internet service provider, offering subscription-based dial up access to the emerging online world. At a time when plenty of major corporations were still struggling to even comprehend the significance and impact of the web, Bowie was there staking his claim. 'If I was 19 again, I'd bypass music and go right to the internet,' he said at the time. He understood that a revolution was coming....
"More importantly though, Bowie conceived of this service as a visual, interactive community for music fans. Through his Ultrastar company he negotiated deals to give users access to music services like the Rolling Stone Network, which livestreamed concerts, and Music Boulevard, one of the first companies to offer paid-for downloadable music tracks. The ISP provided every user with 5MB of web space, encouraging them to create and share their own websites; there were also forums and live chat sections where Bowie himself conducted live web chats. This was in effect a music-centric social network, several years before the emergence of sector leaders like Friendster and Myspace. The site was also technologically ambitious. At a time when most homepages were simple constructs of text and still images on a default grey background, BowieNet used emerging plug ins like Flash and RealAudio to provide animating graphics and downloadable music clips. Newcomers were told they'd need at least a 28k, but preferably 56k modem connection - this was demanding at a time when the commercial WWW infrastructure was still in its infancy. Parts of the front page of BowieNet remain available on the Internet Archive."
Seven uses for silica desiccant pouches.
Calvin Beisner, Ph.D., of the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation:
"...we are persuaded by the empirical evidence that human use of fossil fuels causes very little global warming, the benefits of which probably exceed the harms of which, while the benefits of the energy derived from those fossil fuels far outweigh whatever net harms might arise from the slight warming their use causes.
"Notice the stress on empirical evidence. The only grounds for fears of dangerous man-made global warming are predictions made on the basis of computer climate models of how the world's climate responds to increased atmospheric CO2 concentration. But as Nobel Prize-winning physicist Richard Feynman famously put it, if our prediction 'disagrees with experiment, it is wrong.'
"One could go into enormous detail comparing model predictions with real-world observations, but the summary is this:
- On average, they predict twice the warming actually observed over the relevant period.
- Over 95 percent predict more warming, not less, than actually observed. If their errors were random, they would as frequently predict less as more. That they don't implies that their errors are not random but driven by some kind of bias, whether intentional and dishonest or unintentional and arising simply from misunderstanding, widely shared among the modelers, of how the climate system works.
- None of them predicted the complete absence of statistically significant global warming stretching back 18 years and 9 months, to February of 1997.
"In short, the models are wrong. They therefore provide no rational basis for any predictions about future global average temperature and consequently no rational basis for any policy related to such predictions."
Capture network streams from BBC iPlayer (TV in the UK only; radio around the world) for later listening using this Perl application. It is up-to-date with the BBC's recent changes in streaming methods. It's a command-line tool -- no GUI. get_iplayer documentation can be found here.
get_iplayer --type=radio --get "Missing Hancocks" --modes=flashaaclow --aactomp3 --force
looks for any programme with Missing Hancocks in the title, looks for a flash AAC stream for the program, converts the received AAC stream to MP3 (the default is MP4), and the --force option overwrites any previous recording.
In lieu of --get followed by a title, you can specify a particular programme ID with an option of this form --PID=b06qht29, where the string after the equals sign is the eight-character programme ID that appears in the BBC iPlayer URL for that episode.
Cybersecurity expert John Bambenek writes about vulnerabilities that can give a hacker an easy way to track your Android phone, and how to reduce your risk.
Perl-based utility that can read and write metadata on image files and can read metadata on audio and other file types.
Because sometimes you need to know things about an OS that was launched when your oldest kid was still in diapers.
A particular Windows 7 Update (KB3075851), which seems to be installed notwithstanding user settings, removes the icon for user control of the update process and replaces it with a nag icon for Windows 10.