Israelis Line Up for Gas Masks as U.S. Ponders Syria Missile Strikes


I’ll keep my wishes just as private as my predictions. This looks pretty bad inside Syria, though.

Originally posted on World:

Middle Eastern conflicts always unfold on multiple levels — think 3-D chess — and for Israel the most relevant level of the crisis in Syria is what it says about the world’s approach not to Syria, but to Iran. As the U.S. prepares to make good on its threats to launch military strikes punishing the government of Syrian President Bashar Assad for its alleged use of chemical weapons, Israel sees the situation as a test of international resolve on checking Iran’s nuclear ambitions, which Israel’s leaders call an existential threat.

“The Iranians are watching very closely how we respond,” says an Israeli official in Jerusalem. “The implications of this go beyond Syria.”

Yet at ground level, Syria is awfully close to Israel proper, and ordinary Israelis have reason to worry that an American air strike could produce consequences beyond the theoretical or geopolitical. Syrian forces stand just across 47 miles (76 km)…

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On Serving As a Peer Reviewer for Journals


This is why I don’t submit: I’ve not had the leisure since I was a graduate student; and I don’t work in a field that encourages it, though many could benefit from our experience if there were a journal with the right target audience (I’m not saying there isn’t — that in itself is a research project). This is the second time today that I’ve been able to boil down something I’ve read into, “If you’re going to do X — be prepared to do a little work.” My first thought on this article was that submitters to such a peer-reviewer should take a lesson from the recycling industry — some material must be broken down into its constituent parts in order to be recycled. Some assembly may be required. If it is fluid, pour it into the correct mould.

Originally posted on Reassigned Time 2.0:

My name is Dr. Crazy, and I have never recommended an article for publication.  One time, I suggested that a revise and resubmit was appropriate.  That felt pretty good.  But just the once.

In every other case, in the eight or 9 years that I’ve been serving as a reader for a handful of journals, of greater and lesser prestige and selectivity, I have said that the articles that I have read are not acceptable for publication.

And honestly, that really hurts my feelings.  I fantasize about the day when I get an article that I recommend to accept without changes, or to accept with only minor revisions.  You think (or at least I thought) that when you finally get the chance to serve as a peer reviewer that it will be this exciting experience wherein you discover the next new most awesome ideas in your field, and you get…

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How did Ashton Kutcher prepare for his role as Steve Jobs in the new movie Jobs?

What were the actor's sources into accurately playing a good Steve Jobs? Was the biography a major influence? What video research was used the most to understand his mannerism and demeanor? What were the other sources and processes used to understand the CEO and co-founder of Apple?

How did Ashton Kutcher become Steve Jobs?

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The Death Of Google Reader Opens The Door To A Smarter Subscription Ecosystem


Looks like “The Doors of Dublin” — is that the pic?

Originally posted on TechCrunch:


Editor’s note: Julien Genestoux is the founder and CEO of Superfeedr. Superfeedr has provided a real-time infrastructure for RSS and Atom feeds since 2009. Julien is also a vocal open web evangelist and has been pushing forward the PubSubHubbub spec. Follow him on Twitter @julien51.

We all know that Google Reader, which used to be the most obvious RSS subscription tool, is now gone. At the same time, we see “follow” buttons on just about every website. We are at a tipping point with two contradictory trends: the decreased visibility of RSS feeds and the popularity of the “follow” feature. Google Reader and its market share was the biggest road block to a world where “following” can be both decentralized (open!) and ubiquitous.

RSS Is Awesome But Hard

Even though it stands for “Really Simple Syndication,” RSS is a very complex tool to use for most. Don’t forget…

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PiCloud Is A Model Cloud Made Of Raspberry Pi & LEGO For Teaching Students About Web Platforms


I thought I saw this go by in twitter as a tweet posted by Shakthi Vadakkepat, but I can’t be sure. If so, thanks Shakthi, I should have noticed it then.

Originally posted on TechCrunch:

Is there aught the Raspberry Pi can’t do? Here’s another interesting implementation of the $35 microcromputer — or rather a stack of 56 Pis, linked together to form what its creators have called PiCloud, using LEGO bricks as bespoke racks for the Pi stacks. (Not the first time we’ve seen Pi paired with LEGO either.)

The project comes out of the University of Glasgow’s School of Computing Science, and is intended as a teaching aid so students can hack around with a model cloud platform and play with techs like virtualisation to learn about the infrastructure underpinning services like Amazon’s AWS.

The 56 Raspberry Pis in PiCloud are stacked in four mini Lego racks, each topped off with a top-of-rack-switch which has 16 Ethernet connections: 14 used to network the Pis and the other two for connecting the switches. At the software stack layer of PiCloud, each Pi board is running Raspbian…

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Windows 7: USB Transfers Slow?


I was looking for something else entirely when I stumbled across this post on this blog and recalled the absolutely wretched performance I had on my Windows 7 Professional for a memory card that I have that uses a small unpowered USB Adapter. I subscribed to Anura Guruge’s blog because if this is any indication of the tips I could get, I’m on board!

Originally posted on Windows 7 -- by Anura Guruge:

If you have noticed that doing any kind of data transfer across USB with Windows 7 is somewhat slow, YOU are not alone.

This is yet another USB related problem in Windows 7.

Yes, we already know that Windows 7 has problems with un-powered USB Hubs … though I think some of these can be fixed by changing the Windows 7 Power Management option for that USB controller.

What I am talking about here is inordinately long times to transfer data, e.g., files or folders, across USB. This is most noticeable when you are trying to copy data to or from an USB key.

I noticed this the very first time I used Windows 7 … way back on October 23, 2009. But, since I was using a new 4G USB key I thought that it must be the key.

But, I kept on noticing this each time I tried…

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Tracy Levesque: Custom Post Types for Right-Brained Folks


Reminds me of “Writing on Both Sides of the Brain: Breakthrough Techniques for People Who Write” by Henriette Anne Klauser.

Originally posted on

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