February 2006 Archives

February 28, 2006

Our House From Above

Look, you can see it right there! It's our new deck, an actual outdoor one; Google Satellite Image Circled in yellow, there. We will be on the 4th floor. Currently, it has views of the Manhattan skyline to the north. However we are told there will be new construction next door that will obstruct our view. Its a duplex. And we haven't signed the contract yet. So we're trying not to count chickens. But look at our cool deck!

February 23, 2006

Quantum Whantum?

And you think people hate computers now (from an article about the future of quantum computing, on Slashdot); "With the right set-up, the theory suggested, the computer [user] would sometimes get an answer out of the computer even though the program did not run. And now researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have improved on the original design and built a non-running quantum computer that really works." This is very humorous. I supervise the computer operations in what I would consider a fairly typical office environment, and already I am hounded constantly with "the computer did this to me!" and "the computer is giving me wrong information!", so often that my new recently adopted cheeky motto is "I Hate Computers." I am now forced to consider the rising spectre of the not too distant future, when in fact the computer does take the initiative and start "doing it to you" without you even asking first. Update; Also, from the article linked on Slashdot; This scheme could have an advantage over straightforward quantum computing. "A non-running computer produces fewer errors [...]" Umm... Well isn't that true of most computers today anyway?

February 19, 2006

The Monty Hall Question

This post on kottke.org got me thinking. Not thinking about the Airplane on a Conveyor Belt problem, but rather thinking about why I haven't written a blog post since last November... ...and also about the "Let's Make A Deal" problem, aka The Monty Hall Problem, which is apparently similar to the Airplane on a Conveyor Belt problem in its ability to baffle us all with the non-immediately-obviousness of its answer. Once you do know the answer, it is actually not all that baffling. But I wrote a program to test the theory anyway. That program is here. It looks like this; LetsMakeADealGrab.bmp Now go play with it.