The future of democracy

Clay Shirky has an amazing Ted Talk video. It is about what the computer science community can do for democracy.  This is the future of legislation, I hope to see it in place in my lifetime. The larger aspect is this type of distributed work will be at play for more than just the open source community.

Everyone is jumping on the coding bandwagon. Yes those jobs earn more and everything will need to be programmed. The VCR (now DVR) is not so simple any more.  And more and more things are on the Internet (like it or not).  Many of the programming concepts are truly based in math, taking a large problem and breaking it down in to smaller and smaller parts. Which is why i think this is funny.  

 

 

 

How Magnets really work

Magnets are fun and exciting. Real magnets are from iron or electro magnets. In physics class I remember learning that magnatism does not exist and it really is changing electron fields. Yes, that is true. What is really cool is that to fully explain why magnatism exists, the new pysics fields of special relativity and quantum mechanics are needed. Both only recently worked out in the last 100 years. And we have been using compases for a while. Wow and awesome!

Cicada 17 year cycle – Prime Numbers

Recently in the news there is talk of the 17 year cycle cidada. Why 17 years? Seems like a long time. The reason is prime numbers. Watch the video for the explination.

Here are some other news articles and some culture around cicadas

Cicadas take over Staten Island – NY Times

17 Year Cicada Mystery – NY Times

The Japanese love bugs. In the summer time you can buy pet beetles (2) at the local hardware store. Long ago a famous poet named Basho traveled through Japan and worte many haikus about the world around him. One of those is about the cicada. It is carved in a rock at Yamadera. Basho spent some time in this town and temple.

Japanese Romanji English Translation
Cicada poem by Basho

閑さや

岩にしみ入る

蝉の声

shizuke saya

iwa nishimi iru

semi no koe

purely leisure

permeating the rock

the cicada's sound