My avatar across the web: a photo of my feet in grey-white socks and brown sandals.

Ben Babcock

I read, write, code, and knit.

5 Articles Tagged with “link dump”

  1. NSA doesn’t need to tap the wires to see your passwords

    I feel like I haven’t been doing much in the way of online consuming lately. I’ve been creating a lot, mostly writing; and most of my consumption has been in the form of good, old-fashioned literature. Still, here’s a few things that caught my eye!

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  2. Universal fat jokes, Doctor Who will be everywhere, and apparently the Internet is no longer for porn

    I’m comfortably ensconced (this is the correct word) in the well-worn couch in my grandparents’ basement. In a few hours I’ll be on an Air Canada flight to Thunder Bay, where I shall while away my summer in whatever manner pleases me (think coconut milkshakes, ninja dance parties, and suffocating under a massive pile of library books). Until then, though, things happen on the Internet.

    • We should be getting a Doctor Who 50th anniversary special trailer any time soon, because they screened it at Comic-Con. But apparently, according to the comments section, that isn’t going to happen. However, I am somewhat assuaged because the special will be simulcast around the world, which means I don’t have to worry about spoiling it for my dad (or Twitter spoiling it for anyone else).
    • Watch this “in memoriam” video for the myriad characters who have died during the first three seasons of Game of Thrones. Spoilers, obviously.
    • In an interesting spot of science news, evolution might be more predictable than we thought. It’s hard to get testable hypotheses out of macro-evolutionary theory, thanks to the time scales involved, but scientists are always finding ways around that.
    • Also, on the

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  3. Science is awesome in this week’s link roll

    Eight days of school left, and then I get to return to Canada for a month! I had a nice dinner in Norwich on Friday with the math department. My train ride home should have been uneventful, but I stupidly forgot my suit carrier on the train from Norwich. So it’s somewhere in London Liverpool St Station, with any luck, and I get it back.

    I didn’t have that many links to share, and I was busy last weekend, so I held them over until this week. But that means I have much more to highlight!

    • I’m always happy to read about how the atomic bomb has changed our world. Wait, that sounded wrong. Let me start that again.
    • I’m always interested to find out new side-effects of using atomic bombs in our atmosphere. For instance, it’s possible to determine if a supposedly pre–World War II painting is a forgery by checking the quantity of certain isotopes, like strontium, in the paint. Atomic testing has markedly increased such isotopes in the atmosphere, so paint manufactured after World War II is different from paint manufactured before! Now, scientists have used a similar process to confirm that our brains grow new neurons

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  4. Protest by reading seems about my speed

    It’s been a good week. On Friday night I went to the school’s Year 11 prom. I wore a suit and trainers, with a new bow tie and even some bracers. And somehow I ended up winning Best Dancer (no one could step to that).

    Meanwhile, on the Web this week, here’s what I found interesting:

    • I fondly remember watching Captain Planet as a kid. Looking back, it might seem cheesy (indeed, it probably seemed cheesy to me even then). But both the story and its pro-environmental message spoke to me. So I’m very excited and intrigued to learn that Sony has decided a Captain Planet move is in order. While we’re on the subject, does ayone else remember that one time Captain Planet turned people into trees?
    • Speaking of science and the environment, Bill Nye is one of my heroes. He’s one of the reasons I like to wear bow ties. Bill Nye the Science Guy was another favourite as a child. The New York Times has an excellent spotlight on him. Go read it!
    • Someone has put together an explanation of the various archetypes met during the Hero’s Journey (à la Campbell) using puppets

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  5. Things I wish I had done or seen

    I tweet a lot, and that includes links to interesting things I see on the Web. Twitter is an interesting medium with a lot of advantages—but one of those isn’t really permanence. It’s not easy to go back and look at one’s previous tweets, or to collect and categorize one’s tweets.

    Since I’d like to blog more, I thought I’d try sharing here some of those things (and other things) I’ve encountered over the week.

    • You can use math to become better at Monopoly. Well, you can use math to help you out with any game of chance, but Walter Hickey does an excellent job actually analyzing, step-by-step, the different probabilities involved. You don’t have to be well-versed in math to get something from the presentation, though familiarity with probability will definitely help.
    • I’m stoked that the Large Hadron Collider has detected what is most likely a Higgs boson. It would have been exciting to have to tweak the standard model even more, but now we have some interesting evidence in its favour (especially because it wasn’t quite the mass of Higgs we were looking for). That being said, discovering what you are looking for, instead of something entirely

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