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Biweekly links for 07/27/2009

by Michael Nielsen on July 27, 2009
  • Coworking on a super boat
    • I could work there.
  • Solving a Hamiltonian Path Problem with a bacterial computer
    • What’s emphasized in the abstract is the NP-completeness, which I think is a pity, because it doesn’t seem to be what’s really interesting here. What’s interesting is that this is another step in using synthetic biology to approach universal computation. It seems that most (or all) of the outputs have been open sourced: “We successfully designed, constructed, and tested a bacterial computer capable of finding a Hamiltonian path in a three node directed graph. This proof-of-concept experiment demonstrates that bacterial computing is a new way to address NP-complete problems using the inherent advantages of genetic systems. The results of our experiments also validate synthetic biology as a valuable approach to biological engineering. We designed and constructed basic parts, devices, and systems using synthetic biology principles of standardization and abstraction. “
  • Journalistic narcissism « BuzzMachine
  • Lost Garden: Flash Love Letter
    • Excellent article, ostensibly about the economics of making Flash games, but containing many interesting thoughts about online content in general.
  • Is AP Run By Idiots? | BNET Technology Blog | BNET
    • There seems to be a lot of evidence that the answer is “yes”.
  • Overcoming Bias : Academia’s Function
    • Robin Hanson’s explanation of what academia does: essentially, he argues that it’s all a signalling game, based on impressiveness of affiliation. I disagree on some important points, but it’s a fascinating argument.
  • Espresso Map
    • 153 locations where good espresso (according to the site author) can be found in North America. May be useful for desperate Australian / European espresso lovers.
  • Speculators ‘R’ Us: The G8 And Energy Prices « The Baseline Scenario
    • Very interesting post explaining some of the factors causing volatility in oil prices.
  • ArchivePress » Blog Archive » Which blogs should be preserved?
    • Eventually, all of them (disk is cheap), in my opinion. Comments should be preserved as well. But you could start with some set of the most popular blogs (say the Technorati top 100,000, to pick a more or less random list). Assuming 50 meg per blog, that’s only 5 terabytes of data. The cost in terms of time setting up etc is almost certainly far greater than the storage cost and cost of serving archived copies.

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