William Vallicella, a Ph.D. in Philosophy, writes deep philosophical posts in his blog called Maverick Philosopher.
Recently, he wrote 3 interesting posts on what are the essential characteristics of religion, among 5 religions he compared.
Nice thoughts, but, ofcourse, not all people think alike.
Newly released rankings of safe and dangerous cities in the US by Morgan Quitno Press.
This is a cool technology, and I think it will be useful for tracking, which photos in our collection are still pending to be forwarded to whom..;)
It is rumored that Google has already acquired Riya.
A company Blacklight Power claims to generate "lots" of energy from hydrogen/water, this article says.
Found some links to Microsoft's new research OS Singularity.
They recently released a technical report (PDF), which has some details on the internals.
They are trying to focus on "dependability" as their main focus of the design of the OS. They designed their own language "Sing#" based on C#.
In the first some pages, that write that they beleive they have conceived a more modern version of an "OS process" which they call as "Software Isolated Process(SIP)".
They decribe it as follows - I quote -
SIPs are the OS processes on Singularity. All code outside the kernel executes in a SIP. SIPs
differ from conventional operating system processes in a number of ways:
simultaneously access an object. Communications between processes transfers exclusive
ownership of data.
in a physical or virtual address space.
channels. A channel specifies its communications protocol as well as the values
transferred, and both aspects are verified.
Low cost makes it practical to use SIPs as a fine-grain isolation and extension
resources can be efficiently reclaimed.
systems, and garbage collectors.
I am not an OS expert, but it appears to me after reading some of their paper, that there may be some ingenious insights in their effort.
Looks like Microsoft Research, with their luminous research members, might be striking a resonance of the likes of Bell Labs or Xerox PARC of the old days. Had not heard of so many good researchers coming together at a place, and working on a "complete OS" research.
I sometimes feel that engineering is too off from the regular human life.
When I come home after browsing through lot of software code at my workplace as a software engineer, it becomes difficult for me to merge back into normal (family) life.
Software code is closer to mathematics, both of which are abstract and distant from normal/real life/world.
If I would have been in arts/humanities/social sciences, I would probably have been closer to human life, and wouldnt have felt it difficult to switch to family mode after reaching home. Even being a manager in an engineering firm, would have reduced the divide, since managing involves tasks like "managing people; managing projects; getting things done; getting issues solved; organizing for efficiency" which often does not involved delving into abstract technical details.
Mechanical engineering (like working in General Motors, designing a car engine), also would be closer to science, both of which are not as distant as math/software from real life, since they are concerned with actual physical things that move like gasoline, pinston, air, car, etc.
Ofcourse where this is too much "logic" involved, it often becomes like "mathematical logic", and thus goes towards mathematics. So if you go further from physics of materials in an engine, and start applying mathematical logic, you go towards more abstraction.
Hmm, but physics also involves lot of mathematics and equations, so it is difficult to consider science (physics/chemistry) as being less abstract than mathematics. Biology though is not part of that group.
There's one more thing: People in engineering tend to go away from arts/humanities, and vice versa. Reminds me of C. P. Snow's idea of Two Cultures
Another thing: Brain, i think does not naturally compute logic, it is more of an emotional and biological machine. Our logical thinking is a burden on the free, natural, mind. Like Stan Ulam, friend of Alan Turing, said "What makes you so sure that mathematical logic corresponds to the way we think?"