Bitcoin Schadenfreude

If you want to see a bunch of butthurt Libertarians, read the comments:

Like all currency systems, Bitcoin comes with an implicit political agenda attached. Decisions we take about how to manage money, taxation, and the economy have consequences: by its consequences you may judge a finance system. Our current global system is pretty crap, but I submit that Bitcoin is worst. [...]

It's also inherently damaging to the fabric of civil society. You think our wonderful investment bankers aren't paying their fair share of taxes? Bitcoin is pretty much designed for tax evasion. Moreover, The Gini coefficient of the Bitcoin economy is ghastly, and getting worse, to an extent that makes a sub-Saharan African kleptocracy look like a socialist utopia, and the "if this goes on" linear extrapolations imply that BtC will badly damage stable governance, not to mention redistributive taxation systems and social security/pension nets if its value continues to soar (as it seems designed to do due to its deflationary properties).

Also, this: @cstross: "Hacker News as a news site clearly lies somewhere on the Asperger's spectrum."

If you'll excuse me, I'll be on a leaky barge counting my bullets.

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Not drinking will kill you.


Of the 1,824 study participants, only 41 percent of the moderate drinkers died prematurely compared to a whopping 69 percent of the nondrinkers. Meanwhile, the heavy drinkers fared better than those who abstained, with a 60 percent mortality rate. Despite the increased risks for cirrhosis and several types of cancer, not to mention dependency, accidents, and poor judgment associated with heavy drinking, those who imbibe are less likely to die than people who stay dry.

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jwz mixtape 135

Please enjoy jwz mixtape 135.

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Current Music: as noted

scripting iTunes 11 Up Next

Dear Lazyweb, how do I fake a click on this dingus using Applescript or Automator?

When I try to record an Automator action for it, it records "Click the "<fill in title>" button" and doesn't work.

(That button is the undocumented and apparently nameless magic thingy that makes Up Next use the selected playlist as its random source, which is the closest you can get to reproducing iTunes DJ in iTunes 11 -- but pretty much if you ever click anywhere else ever, it forgets about it. So I want to write a script to put it back to normal more quickly.)

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Thank you, Thing.

Severed hand attached to man's ankle.

'I was just shocked and frozen at the spot, until co-workers unplugged the machine and retrieved my hand and took me to the hospital,' he said of the accident, which took place last month in Changde, south-central China.

After being taken to a larger hospital in the region seven hours after the incident, doctors said they could re-attach the hand but not straightaway.

In order to stop the severed hand from dying, they grafted it to Mr Xiao's ankle, where it remained for a month before he had recovered from other injuries sustained in the accident to undergo re-attachment surgery.

Doctors are now hopeful that he will regain full function of his hand.

Previously, previously, previously.

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Italian protester's kiss was 'sexual violence'

Never kiss a Stormtrooper.

The woman who kissed a riot policeman during protests near the northern Italian city of Turin in November has been detained for "sexual violence" and "offence to a public official".

Franco Maccari, the Secretary General of Coisp, the Italian police officers' union, said during an interview on Radio24 that he had pressed charges against the demonstrator who kissed an officer's helmet. The kiss took place during a protest march against controversial plans for a new high-speed TAV train line.

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CV-Dazzle Contest


Next year the Janus program, an initiative run by the director of national intelligence, will begin to collect photographs of people's faces from social media websites and public video feeds. Machines will then use powerful algorithms to pair those photos with existing biometric profiles. [...]

My project, CV Dazzle, explores how fashion can be used as camouflage from face-detection technology, the first step in automated face recognition. The name is derived from a type of World War I naval camouflage called Dazzle, which used cubist-inspired designs to break apart the visual continuity of a battleship and conceal its orientation and size. Likewise, CV Dazzle uses avant-garde hairstyling and makeup designs to break apart the continuity of a face. Since facial-recognition algorithms rely on the identification and spatial relationship of key facial features, like symmetry and tonal contours, one can block detection by creating an "anti-face."


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BigDog Beta

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Katy Perry the Wedding Unicorn

She sneezes glitter, pees lemonade, and shoots pink fire.

Kat and Jesse built in a small air compressor to activate the "glitter sneeze." It runs through a gravity-fed glitter containment unit, and is controlled from an arduino switch that is activated by a button on the base of the sculpture.

Beverages are run by a CO2 pressurized corny keg, also in the base, with a beverage tap at the crotch. She was originally supposed to pee champagne, but Vermont liquor laws prohibit anyone who is not a licensed bartender from serving alcohol on public land, and we weren't able to get the unicorn licensed in time. Plus, we figured that with lemonade, the kids could also partake -- and have something to talk about with their therapists later.

Katy Perry's horn is hammered copper with a flame-cut finial. The fire effect is an aerosolized methanol spray (which creates the pink color and liquid-looking flare), with a propane pilot.

Under supervision, wedding guests could activate the flare via a button on the back of the base. When timed correctly, she shot fire and sneezed glitter at the same time.

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