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Hello Digg!

An old story on this blog made its way to Digg’s front page today! This would be a high traffic week.

Geek vs Nerd

How would you differentiate between a geek and a nerd? The geeks and nerds themselves do not agree with most definitions, for some obvious reasons, and some say that the dictionaries are wrong.

geek
n.slang

  • A person regarded as foolish, inept or clumsy
  • A person who is single-minded or accomplished in scientific or technical pursuits but is felt to be socially inept.
  • A carnival performer whose show consists of bizarre acts, such as biting the head off a live chicken.

nerd also nurd
n.slang

  • A foolish, inept, or unattractive person.
  • A person who is single-minded or accomplished in scientific or technical pursuits but is felt to be socially inept.

(more…)

World’s Most Expensive Coffee: Kopi Luwak

Kopi Luwak is Indonesian. “Kopi” means coffee and “Luwak” is the indonesian word for civets, a mongoose like animal that dwells in tropical forests. What makes Kopi Luwak unique is becuase these coffee beans must first pass through a civet’s digestive system. Kopi Luwak is said to be of better quality than the similar Ethiopian Civet Coffee.

Civets feast on ripe coffee beans. Once they have been eaten, the coffee beans remain protected within the shells as they pass through the animal; however some biochemicals reach the beans’ surface resulting in the added flavor and change of color. Once collected they undergo a process involving sterilization. Basically, the most expensive coffee in the world comes from shit. A cup of Kopi Luwak costs around US$50.

The Formula for Effective Humor

Some months ago, a scientist named Igor Krishtafovich claimed that he had discovered the formula for effective humor.

Humor Effectiveness = P x C/T + M

  • P = personal involvement
  • C = complexity of the joke
  • T = time taken to solve the joke
  • M = background mood

When you think about it, this really makes sense. The scientist implied that laughter and humor has aggression working in the background. That is, humor is a weapon used in intellectual battles. It takes a fair level of intelligence to have a good sense of humor, and if you can get a crowd laughing with your own joke you could get the feeling of being above everyone else for that moment, satisfying your instinct to be dominant.

Happy New Year

Wish you all a happy 2006…

Major Geographical Reshuffle

This is a comment I made on a blog. Somebody else also went throught the trouble of making another comment using my nick on a previous post on the same blog. Erm. Flamewars are so, 90’s?

Dear animals and plants living on planet Earth,

This is to inform you that the entire Australian continent has been moved to Maafannu, and that we have assigned a timezone with a 12 hour difference from that which was previously assigned (now late night snack time in Male’ will be lunch time in Australia, unlike the late night/early morning hours as previously experienced at the same time.) This change will give the Australian residents easy access to the equator channel and walking distance access to shiny beaches.

Sincerely

The Flying Spaghetti Monster

World Usability Day

Today is the World Usability Day. Today is the day for people who asked the questions, “Why doesn’t this work better? Why can’t they make this is easier?” BBC has run a survey and according to the results, the worst candidate is DVD package wrapping, and the best is, obviously, the iPod.

I would agree on the iPod myself, and so would everyone else; and also I would put Google and all of their services right next to the iPod. This also raises one more concern. How exactly would you measure usability? If good usability means a product or service being instantly accessible for people of all cultures, with no or a small learning curve, then the idea of usability should not be applied for everything out there. Usability (most of it) is actually in our heads. Since some things are meant for repetitive use and with such frequent use, the usability seems to improve afterwards. For example, many of us use Vi. It is the one and only console text editor of choice for many of us. But almost all of us found it difficult and annoying to use in our first attempts. But with time and frequent use, it is has now become as easy to use as the iPod.

Wide Impact - Chaos Cloud

If you thought that the movies Deep Impact and Armageddon were everything about mega destructive events, you are wrong. How about something that could wipe out the entire solar system, and yes including the sun? And how about this thing existing in today’s reality and not in some movie?

On 6th April this year, Nasa’s Chandra X-Ray Observatory detected a swirling cloud of gas and cosmic dust, 10 million miles wide. The cloud destroys everything in its path, and that really means everything. It is moving at near speed of light, and is headed directly towards earth!

Now the good news. These depicted events are theories. But unlike normal “theoretic” theories, this is a very real one. Nasa has left head room for any new discoveries that could change their perception of such chaos clouds, but so far their methods are proven correct, and as for now, you can bet on a known time frame for the solar system to get completely displaced.

The observatory has made an ETA and it is 9:15 a.m. EDT on June 1, 2014. I hope I live to see this, if it is to happen.

Why Smart People Defend Bad Ideas

It is not everyday that I come across interesting pieces like this one. It goes like

If you learn a few tricks of logic and debate, you can refute the obvious, and defend the ridiculous. If the people you’re arguing with aren’t as comfortable in the tactics of argument, or aren’t as arrogant as you are, they may even give in and agree with you.

Enough said. Read more on why smart people defend bad ideas.

90 Feet High Waves

US scientists measured waves taller than 90 feet (with misses that could be as high as 137 feet) in the Gulf of Mexico during hurricane Ivan. This is the real world’s version of the Perfect Storm, the tallest waves ever recorded. Imagine your average dhoni ride in such waves. Thrilling thought. Read the article on BBC.