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The Science Behind i-Dosing

Before the FUD gets to you, take a moment and read the I-Dousing article on Psychology Today. If the paranoid stuff out there sounds ridiculous, it’s because you’re a sane individual.

Around The Web

Invisible Gorilla

Invisible Gorilla

I remember seeing the original demonstration before. Since I had heard about the experiment before I knew to expect the gorilla. The new 2010 version introduces a few new tricks to prove the concept even further. If you’ve got an interest cognitive science, this is pretty cool stuff.


2010 Version

Apple Mozilla

Firefox Home: Adults Only

Firefox Home iTunes WarningApple posted the Firefox Home application, which complies with Apple’s policies by using WebKit as opposed to Gecko. Regardless, for whatever reason Apple feels that Firefox Home is a NC-17 application.

Presumably the reasoning behind this is that since a web browser can view anything on the internet and 12% of it is porn among other things out there.

If Apple really feels the Firefox Home app is dangerous, why doesn’t it update Safari so that it warns people of the risks before first use? Presumably a fair amount of iPhone users are under 17 and potentially unaware of the risks. Should parents be warned in the store? Safari is a default app and included in every iPhone that ships.

Other web browsers like Opera and Perfect Browser have the same restriction but much less verbose warnings (only “Frequent/Intense Mature/Suggestive Themes”). At least two others, iCab Mobile and Browser has the same warnings as Firefox. Apple isn’t very consistent.

Meanwhile the Twitter app (formerly Tweetie) will let you “follow” porn starts who will provide services if a particular team won the world cup. It also embeds a web browser that will go to links in tweets regardless of content. That app is rated 4+.

This strikes me as inconsistent and unnecessary.

Edit: This is the dialog presented when you try and download it. This must be one hardcore app:

iTunes Firefox Warning Dialog


Bob Sheppard

From the NY Times obituary for Yankee Stadium announcer Bob Sheppard:

“The Yankees and Bob Sheppard were a marriage made in heaven,” said Paul Sheppard, a 71-year-old financial adviser. “I know St. Peter will now recruit him. If you’re lucky enough to go to heaven, you’ll be greeted by a voice, saying: ‘Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to heaven!’ ”

He may have never actually played for the Yankees, but he was in every way a start. It will be a shame when Jeter retires and his voice is no longer heard. It would be nice if they would adopt his “Welcome to Yankee Stadium” and play that before games. They must have a recording somewhere.

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IDK My BFF…. zzzz

eMarketer on research from Oxygen Media Insights Group:

More than a third of female social media users ages 18 to 34 had fallen asleep with their PDA in their hands or reported regularly checking Facebook first thing in the morning.

I get that females especially that age group are the more social demographic, we’ve seen that demonstrated countless times… but this can’t be healthy. “more than a third” is actually 37% almost 2 in 5. I’d bet if you go skew the demographic younger, 15-23 for example you’d get an even higher percentage.

That might be why Telco’s can charge so much for text messaging despite it having an extremely low actual cost to provide the service (translation: it’s almost pure profit). Addicts will pay.

Around The Web Security

Caffeine Algebra

This is a very interesting tidbit from LifeHacker about caffeine:

The effectiveness of caffeine varies significantly from person to person, due to genetics and other factors in play. The average half-life of caffeine—that is, how long it takes for half of an ingested dose to wear off—is about five to six hours in a human body. Women taking oral birth control require about twice as long to process caffeine. Women between the ovulation and beginning of menstruation see a similar, if less severe, extended half-life. For regular smokers, caffeine takes half as long to process—which, in some ways, explains why smokers often drink more coffee and feel more agitated and anxious, because they’re unaware of how their bodies work without cigarettes.

Assuming you know some of the variables at play here and track over an extended period (at least 1 month) so that you derive a baseline, you can essentially use algebra to solve for what you don’t know about a person, in particular for a woman based on their observable behavior regarding caffeine consumption and reaction. I recall reading between ovulation and menstruation it’s about 35-40% longer or roughly 9-10 hours. The half-life of a pregnant woman is 9-11 hours [cite].

In practice this would require some dedication as you need to derive a baseline and it would still never be truly accurate, but interesting regardless. I’m sure you can add other statistics and metrics to help improve the accuracy but again it wouldn’t be terribly accurate. Regardless I bet it would surprise some people.

It just shows how easily information is revealed through our mundane activities regardless of how well people conceal it. Psychology, chemistry, medicine, and security all in this one beverage consumption.

I’m sure you can come up with a more male specific scheme as well as many more gender neutral schemes. I just ran across this more female specific example and found it rather interesting.

Around The Web Funny

Greatest Movie Insults

Greatest Movie Insults

Warning: The above clip contains strong language.

This YouTube video has been making the rounds in the past 12 hours or so, I’ve seen it three separate times now, and enjoyed it just as many times. You’ll likely recognize many of them. It’s a great roundup. Enjoy.

I will get back to serious blog posts. Just not tonight.

Around The Web Funny

Sexing Up Your Towwwwwnnnn

Sex Robot

This has internet meme written all over it. It might be the first time a YouTube comment provides some relevant context:

The first viewing, you wonder “what the hell”. Second viewing, you’re thinking “this is kinda funny”. Viewings 3-10, you know now this is hilarious. After 15-25 viewings, you wonder if you have a problem. 26-49 makes you appreciate the sociological undertones of Sex Robot. 50+ viewings and you recognize it as your new God.

Warning: It may get stuck in your head.