rePost::Cossack Rahm Works For The Czar – Paul Krugman Blog –

This is hoping angainst hope; But what can we do????

Maybe financial reform will happen, or at least set up a “teachable moment” battle with the GOP. But by letting health reform slide, the administration is abandoning one really big policy initiative that is just inches from happening. Let this go, and there’s likely to be no achievements worth remembering.

But don’t blame Rahm Emanuel; this is about the president. After Massachusetts, Democrats were looking for leadership; they didn’t get it. Ten days later, nobody is sure what Obama intends to do, and his aides are giving conflicting readings. It’s as if Obama checked out.

Look, Obama is a terrific speaker and a very smart guy. He really showed up the Republicans in the now-famous give-and-take. But we knew that. What’s now in question isn’t his ability to talk, it’s his ability to lead.

via Cossack Rahm Works For The Czar – Paul Krugman Blog –

rePost:Why the Apple iPad Rocks Part 3:The iPad is NOT a Computer, its a Briefcase w/Gizmos | Angry Bear

read the whole thing. If you haven’t seen it google sixth sense computing ted talk watch the 2009 one presented in TED india. For me the iPad is a step towards having the sixth sense computer that is seen in that TED conference. It is the tool to of the rationalist wannabe to help make great decisions. I still remember how wikipedia/the internet in general, has changed conversations; I believe making it better. The advent of wikipedia allowed people to stop debating useless info because you can look at it at wikipedia and then you’d know. Now it has been a problem because sometimes the conversation stops because we have no way at looking at wikipedia.  This is what made the iPhone useful. The iPad is the next logical step. If it only had a camera it wouldn’t take a genius to create some of the sixth sense apps that was demoed in the TED talk. The iPhone/iPad/iTouch because of the app store has become the platform where we can build towards the sixth sense technologies that we I believe already need to traverse this ever complex world!!!!

The iPad is NOT a Computer, its a Briefcase w/Gizmos

Posted by Bruce Webb | 1/28/2010 01:18:00 PM



by Bruce Webb

Geekery below the fold.

Steve Jobs was a little hyperbolic in his language yesterday which led some people to laugh. Well there are reasons he is a self-made billionaire and you are not.

The key to understanding why the iPad and similar devices can change the world it to understand that it is not a computer without a physical keyboard, or a multi-media player, or a portable display, sure all of those are built in but they don't add up to what the iPad really is, which is a magic briefcase full of Gizmos.

What's a Gizmo. Well the online dictionaries have boring definitions but for my purpose a Gizmo is something that does something for you. A Gizmo generally isn't big and it mostly isn't multifunctional, it just does what it does in a fun and efficient way. The iPad is designed to be a repository for Gizmos along with Games and Books and Music and allows you to use all of them anywhere you go. Now it sounds silly to put it this way but it doesn't have to be, if you were a Building Inspector it might be nice to have one Gizmo to record your findings and another that allowed you to look up the International Building and Fire Codes on the fly, and maybe another to allow you to record your time on the job. And on a dirty, dusty or muddy job site it might be nice to have one in the same form factor as the clipboard you had been carrying rather than some clamshell lap top vulnerable to the environment.

via The iPad is NOT a Computer, its a Briefcase w/Gizmos | Angry Bear.

rePost::World’s Friendliest Countries –

Let me just state that I resent that the Philippines is not on this list!!!

World’s Friendliest Countries

Rebecca Ruiz, 12.01.09, 12:01 AM EST

These nations are the most hospitable to expatriates, according to a new report.

Rank Country Making Friends Making Local Friends Joining Community Groups Organizing School For My Children Organizing My Finances Organizing My Health Care Finding Somewhere To Live Setting Up Utilities

1 Bahrain 5 20 1 5 3 1 2 4

2 Canada 11 2 3 6 7 8 5 2

3 Australia 10 6 9 7 1 7 11 5

4 Thailand 1 16 18 4 11 2 1 9

5 Malaysia 4 14 19 1 3 3 4 13

6 South Africa 6 2 8 3 14 6 3 14

7 Hong Kong 3 17 12 17 2 5 8 3

8 Singapore 7 18 24 13 6 4 13 1

9 Spain 12 8 13 18 10 9 7 8

10 United States 15 7 4 12 20 24 10 7


The Expat Explorer survey was commissioned by HSBC Bank International and conducted by the research company FreshMinds. More than 3,100 expatriates were surveyed between February and April 2009.The respondents were asked to rate 23 factors related to their quality of life, including food, entertainment, transportation, health care, finances, education and their ability to make friends. Each criterion is equally weighted to arrive at a score. The overall ranking is based on the average score for a country across the criteria. Eight measures were also selected to comprise the integration score: organizing school for my children; organizing my finances; organizing my health care; finding somewhere to live; making friends; making local friends; setting up utilities; and joining local community groups. The integration score was used to determine the friendliest countries.

via World’s Friendliest Countries –

rePost::Things that probably won’t make it onto a Save Darfur poster – Chris Blattman

It’s not sexy to save darfurians (is this the right word?) from diarrhea but this is what would save 80% of them.  I think people who want to help should as a first impulse find something  a cause a thing that’s not sext to support because we can almost be sure that that cause is underserved and a cause where what little we can do can/may mean alot.

Via Andy Rasmussen, deaths in Darfur? 20% violence, 80% diarrhea.

ultimately means that Darfur followed the common pattern of violent internal conflicts: Initial massacres were followed by massive displacement and the loss of protective health systems, and the problems of displacement ultimately affected the well-being of the population more than the direct experiences of violence.

via Things that probably won’t make it onto a Save Darfur poster – Chris Blattman.

rePost:Why the Apple iPad Rocks Part 2 :Some stuff about the iPad

If the iPhone is any indication, this thing is going to be great for kids. Ollie likes playing games and looking at videos on the iPhone but the larger screen size of the iPad allows for more collaborative play…one kid + one adult or two kids using it together. The iPhone is for solitary use; the iPad can be collaborative (or at least collective). Later: Sippey calls the iPad the family computer:

It looks like a great machine to travel from the living room to the kitchen to the kids room to the bedroom. We’ll search the web on it, read the news on it, the kids will do email on it, play Brushes and Bejeweled on it, and it’ll be the perfect complement to the Sunday afternoon TV football ritual. We’ll use it to control the music in the house, and do some quick bet-settling during dinner. I’m sure we’ll eventually enjoy some multiplayer “board” games on it, or read a book on it, or watch a TV show on it. And the kids will argue with each other over who gets it next. (Dad will.)

By Jason Kottke • Jan 27, 2010 at 02:09 pm • Apple iPad

via Some stuff about the iPad.

Learned Today::Universal time — The Endeavour

Universal time (UTC) is the same as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), give or take a second. It’s essentially the time in Greenwich, England except it ignores Daylight Savings Time.

The abbreviation UTC is an odd compromise. The French wanted to use the abbreviation TUC (temps universel coordonné) and the English wanted to use CUT (coordinated universal time). The compromise was UTC, which doesn’t actually abbreviate anything.

via Universal time — The Endeavour.

rePost:Why the iPad is Revolutionary:Inkling lets textbook makers embrace the iPad | VentureBeat

Got this link from Marginal Revolutions blog. As I’ve said to some people; the iPad is perfect for me because I’ve been thinking of buying a Kindle for a long time. Now I’m still thinking what to buy; Paradox of Choice bites my behind.  I love reading, look at my blog and the rePosts I post are what maybe less than 5 percent of what I read.  The worst part of my day is the commute or the waiting for someone time. I’ve almost solved this by having a notebook always, having at least two books in the bag, and  having printed article to read. The problem is that it’s hard to write in a moving vehicle, and I find that I’d rather read articles/essays when I only have a  short time to read. I hate that I have to print reams upon reams of paper to combat boredom.  If money permits I’m buying both.

Textbooks are different animals than e-book novels and business books, in ways that current e-readers can’t handle. For starters, you don’t read a textbook’s pages serially from first to last. You need to be able to jump around, skip, skim, and flip back and forth between chapter review and chapter content. A textbook’s content should ideally be dynamic from year to year, not frozen in time like a novel.

inkling3The iPad makes it possible to replace static images with interactive puzzles that MacInnis says burn important concepts in to students’ brains better and longer. He showed me a demo learning module that explained the biological concept of cellular mitosis. It starts with a real microscope image of a cell. A caption, simultaneously spoken by a voiceover (They call this karaoke mode. It turns out to help memory better than either text or speech by itself) instructs me to tap the cells nucleus three times to simulate its breakdown. Further steps in the mitosis process require me to pinch, drag or swipe components in the cell after identifying them. When I’m done, I have a memory of having walked through the process physically, rather than just scanning an illustration with my eyes.

Existing texts can be embellished with tooltips, talking text, and interactive quizzes.

wait 2 secs to reload the imageBesides the interactive color format, Inkling’s technology goes beyond the Kindle and other readers by making it possible to hop around a book, to hand out individual chapters as assignments, and to take notes in highlighter yellow right on the text. The notes are sharable among a social network of students and instructor.

But the real breakthrough is in pricing. Instead of a $180 textbook, learning modules built with Inkling will be priced individually on iTunes, just as music and TV shows are. Instead of buying all 50 chapters of a 1,200-page biology book, an instructor can create a customized bundle of only the modules students will actually use. Pricing hasn’t been determined yet, but it’s likely to be a few dollars per unit — much cheaper than current textbooks. (Apple’s cut of book sales is said to be 30 percent.)

via Inkling lets textbook makers embrace the iPad | VentureBeat.