Sunday, May 11, 2008

Memento mori?

According to Wikipedia, Memento mori may be translated as "Remember that you will die.",  a warning that is applicable to human throughout our history.

However, many people such as these people are working on making death unnecessary.   Hopefully, we will live long enough for their research to be practical.  After that we can wait for brain state backup technologies and escape from our mortal flesh eventually.

On a slightly related note, one speculation that tries to explain the Fermi's Paradox is that the aliens already uploaded their mind to other computational substrate and don't care so much to contact primitive technological societies like ours.  The uploaded minds might use little energy, can be transmitted at the speed of light, can exploit computational capacity of complex systems found in the universe, and can run at much higher speed than biological hardware, making their subjective time much faster.  Due to this time scale difference, their conversation with us might be similar to our conversation with a tree.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Top 10 Bugs

Whenever I have a stupid bug in my programming, I would console myself by saying "Well, at least I didn't kill anybody."  Not all programmers can say the same though.  Welcome to History's Worst Software Bugs page at

(Technically, the 1982 Soviet gas pipeline "bug" worked exactly as the designers intended, so I don't think it's a bug at all.)

Teach Yourself Electronics

Here're easy to understand online books about electric circuits.  The books can also be downloaded as HTML or PDF for offline viewing. Combining this with misconceptions about electricity should be a good introduction to how electricity works.  Chalked up as another resource for my kids' education.

The news about the fabrication of memristors by HP got me interested in electric circuits, a long forgotten part of my training, again.