christopher heiser <christopher AT heiser DOT net>
Date Published: February 28th, 2010
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Weekly Roundup

First off, the tragedy in Chile has got me thinking about earthquakes more than I usually do. As far as I can tell the scientific authorities say that we are not seeing an uptick in activity, but rather an unfortunate run of bad luck in terms of proximity to seismic events. A quick look into history shows that the western coast of Chile has extremely high levels of tectonic activity and was the location of the largest recorded earthquake in 1960 at 9.5 on the There's anecdotal evidence emerging that smartphones themselves (and the design of their radios) are the root cause in the degrading quality of service on major networks like AT&T. If this turns out to be true it's a great example of how use cases and product engineering are so tightly coupled. On the bright side, maybe lots of dropped packets is a good thing because being on the network has allowed social scientist to prove that we are predictable creatures of habit like ants in a big, messy anthill.

But mobile networks aren't the only ones watching. Paranoid about Google? Here's how to unplug and purge your relationship with the G-Spot.

Me, I'm more worried about the media's ability to manipulate us by understanding how we work on a biological level. As it turns out, the movie industry has evolved their formula until it perfectly matches our natural processing rhythms to maximize our ability to sit down and stare at the screen. I find this fascinating, if not downright creepy. There was a Harlan Ellison short story where a country developed a neurological weapon that killed people with a brief TV broadcast. The fact that we are reverse engineering our own processing system for the purpose of product marketing has some pretty major implications.

That said, I'm off to watch the Olympic Hockey finals on NBC Viacom sponsored by Nike, McDonalds, and Visa! Their products are doubleplusgood!

by Christopher Heiser on February 28 15:54
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