Sunday, September 02, 2012

This Is Your Brain on Metaphors -

Despite rumors to the contrary, there are many ways in which the human brain isn't all that fancy. Let's compare it to the nervous system of a fruit fly. Both are made up of cells, of course, with neurons playing particularly important roles. Now one might expect that a neuron from a human will differ dramatically from one from a fly. Maybe the human's will have especially ornate ways of communicating with other neurons, making use of unique "neurotransmitter" messengers. Maybe compared to the lowly fly neuron, human neurons are bigger, more complex, in some way can run faster and jump higher.

But no. Look at neurons from the two species under a microscope and they look the same. They have the same electrical properties, many of the same neurotransmitters, the same protein channels that allow ions to flow in and out, as well as a remarkably high number of genes in common. Neurons are the same basic building blocks in both species.

So where's the difference? It's numbers — humans have roughly one million neurons for each one in a fly. And out of a human's 100 billion neurons emerge some pretty remarkable things. With enough quantity, you generate quality.

Erin Schell

Neuroscientists understand the structural bases of some of these qualities. Take language, that uniquely human behavior. Underlining it are structures unique to the human brain —regions like "Broca's area," which specializes in language production. Then there's the brain's "extrapyramidal system," which is involved in fine motor control. The complexity of the human version allows us to do something that, say, a polar bear, could never accomplish — sufficiently independent movement of digits to play a trill on the piano, for instance. Particularly striking is the human frontal cortex. While occurring in all mammals, the human version is proportionately bigger and denser in its wiring. And what is the frontal cortex good for? Emotional regulation, gratification postponement, executive decision-making, long-term planning. We study hard in high school to get admitted to a top college to get into grad school to get a good job to get into the nursing home of our choice. Gophers don't do that.

There's another domain of unique human skills, and neuroscientists are learning a bit about how the brain pulls it off.

Consider the following from J. Ruth Gendler's wonderful "The Book of Qualities," a collection of "character sketches" of different qualities, emotions and attributes:

Anxiety is secretive. He does not trust anyone, not even his friends, Worry, Terror, Doubt and Panic … He likes to visit me late at night when I am alone and exhausted. I have never slept with him, but he kissed me on the forehead once, and I had a headache for two years …


Compassion speaks with a slight accent. She was a vulnerable child, miserable in school, cold, shy … In ninth grade she was befriended by Courage. Courage lent Compassion bright sweaters, explained the slang, showed her how to play volleyball.

What is Gendler going on about? We know, and feel pleasure triggered by her unlikely juxtapositions. Despair has stopped listening to music. Anger sharpens kitchen knives at the local supermarket. Beauty wears a gold shawl and sells seven kinds of honey at the flea market. Longing studies archeology.

Symbols, metaphors, analogies, parables, synecdoche, figures of speech: we understand them. We understand that a captain wants more than just hands when he orders all of them on deck. We understand that Kafka's "Metamorphosis" isn't really about a cockroach. If we are of a certain theological ilk, we see bread and wine intertwined with body and blood. We grasp that the right piece of cloth can represent a nation and its values, and that setting fire to such a flag is a highly charged act. We can learn that a certain combination of sounds put together by Tchaikovsky represents Napoleon getting his butt kicked just outside Moscow. And that the name "Napoleon," in this case, represents thousands and thousands of soldiers dying cold and hungry, far from home.

And we even understand that June isn't literally busting out all over. It would seem that doing this would be hard enough to cause a brainstorm. So where did this facility with symbolism come from? It strikes me that the human brain has evolved a necessary shortcut for doing so, and with some major implications.

Consider an animal (including a human) that has started eating some rotten, fetid, disgusting food. As a result, neurons in an area of the brain called the insula will activate. Gustatory disgust. Smell the same awful food, and the insula activates as well. Think about what might count as a disgusting food (say, taking a bite out of a struggling cockroach). Same thing.

Now read in the newspaper about a saintly old widow who had her home foreclosed by a sleazy mortgage company, her medical insurance canceled on flimsy grounds, and got a lousy, exploitative offer at the pawn shop where she tried to hock her kidney dialysis machine. You sit there thinking, those bastards, those people are scum, they're worse than maggots, they make me want to puke … and your insula activates. Think about something shameful and rotten that you once did … same thing. Not only does the insula "do" sensory disgust; it does moral disgust as well. Because the two are so viscerally similar. When we evolved the capacity to be disgusted by moral failures, we didn't evolve a new brain region to handle it. Instead, the insula expanded its portfolio.

Or consider pain. Somebody pokes your big left toe with a pin. Spinal reflexes cause you to instantly jerk your foot back just as they would in, say, a frog. Evolutionarily ancient regions activate in the brain as well, telling you about things like the intensity of the pain, or whether it's a sharp localized pain or a diffuse burning one. But then there's a fancier, more recently evolved brain region in the frontal cortex called the anterior cingulate that's involved in the subjective, evaluative response to the pain. A piranha has just bitten you? That's a disaster. The shoes you bought are a size too small? Well, not as much of a disaster.

Now instead, watch your beloved being poked with the pin. And your anterior cingulate will activate, as if it were you in pain. There's a neurotransmitter called Substance P that is involved in the nuts and bolts circuitry of pain perception. Administer a drug that blocks the actions of Substance P to people who are clinically depressed, and they often feel better, feel less of the world's agonies. When humans evolved the ability to be wrenched with feeling the pain of others, where was it going to process it? It got crammed into the anterior cingulate. And thus it "does" both physical and psychic pain.

Another truly interesting domain in which the brain confuses the literal and metaphorical is cleanliness. In a remarkable study, Chen-Bo Zhong of the University of Toronto and Katie Liljenquist of Northwestern University demonstrated how the brain has trouble distinguishing between being a dirty scoundrel and being in need of a bath. Volunteers were asked to recall either a moral or immoral act in their past. Afterward, as a token of appreciation, Zhong and Liljenquist offered the volunteers a choice between the gift of a pencil or of a package of antiseptic wipes. And the folks who had just wallowed in their ethical failures were more likely to go for the wipes. In the next study, volunteers were told to recall an immoral act of theirs. Afterward, subjects either did or did not have the opportunity to clean their hands. Those who were able to wash were less likely to respond to a request for help (that the experimenters had set up) that came shortly afterward. Apparently, Lady Macbeth and Pontius Pilate weren't the only ones to metaphorically absolve their sins by washing their hands.

This potential to manipulate behavior by exploiting the brain's literal-metaphorical confusions about hygiene and health is also shown in a study by Mark Landau and Daniel Sullivan of the University of Kansas and Jeff Greenberg of the University of Arizona. Subjects either did or didn't read an article about the health risks of airborne bacteria. All then read a history article that used imagery of a nation as a living organism with statements like, "Following the Civil War, the United States underwent a growth spurt." Those who read about scary bacteria before thinking about the U.S. as an organism were then more likely to express negative views about immigration.

Another example of how the brain links the literal and the metaphorical comes from a study by Lawrence Williams of the University of Colorado and John Bargh of Yale. Volunteers would meet one of the experimenters, believing that they would be starting the experiment shortly. In reality, the experiment began when the experimenter, seemingly struggling with an armful of folders, asks the volunteer to briefly hold their coffee. As the key experimental manipulation, the coffee was either hot or iced. Subjects then read a description of some individual, and those who had held the warmer cup tended to rate the individual as having a warmer personality, with no change in ratings of other attributes.

Another brilliant study by Bargh and colleagues concerned haptic sensations (I had to look the word up — haptic: related to the sense of touch). Volunteers were asked to evaluate the resumes of supposed job applicants where, as the critical variable, the resume was attached to a clipboard of one of two different weights. Subjects who evaluated the candidate while holding the heavier clipboard tended to judge candidates to be more serious, with the weight of the clipboard having no effect on how congenial the applicant was judged. After all, we say things like "weighty matter" or "gravity of a situation."

What are we to make of the brain processing literal and metaphorical versions of a concept in the same brain region? Or that our neural circuitry doesn't cleanly differentiate between the real and the symbolic? What are the consequences of the fact that evolution is a tinkerer and not an inventor, and has duct-taped metaphors and symbols to whichever pre-existing brain areas provided the closest fit?

Jonathan Haidt, of the University of Virginia, has shown how viscera and emotion often drive our decisionmaking, with conscious cognition mopping up afterward, trying to come up with rationalizations for that gut decision. The viscera that can influence moral decisionmaking and the brain's confusion about the literalness of symbols can have enormous consequences. Part of the emotional contagion of the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda arose from the fact that when militant Hutu propagandists called for the eradication of the Tutsi, they iconically referred to them as "cockroaches." Get someone to the point where his insula activates at the mention of an entire people, and he's primed to join the bloodletting.

But if the brain confusing reality and literalness with metaphor and symbol can have adverse consequences, the opposite can occur as well. At one juncture just before the birth of a free South Africa, Nelson Mandela entered secret negotiations with an Afrikaans general with death squad blood all over his hands, a man critical to the peace process because he led a large, well-armed Afrikaans resistance group. They met in Mandela's house, the general anticipating tense negotiations across a conference table. Instead, Mandela led him to the warm, homey living room, sat beside him on a comfy couch, and spoke to him in Afrikaans. And the resistance melted away.

This neural confusion about the literal versus the metaphorical gives symbols enormous power, including the power to make peace. The political scientist and game theorist Robert Axelrod of the University of Michigan has emphasized this point in thinking about conflict resolution. For example, in a world of sheer rationality where the brain didn't confuse reality with symbols, bringing peace to Israel and Palestine would revolve around things like water rights, placement of borders, and the extent of militarization allowed to Palestinian police. Instead, argues Axelrod, "mutual symbolic concessions" of no material benefit will ultimately make all the difference. He quotes a Hamas leader who says that for the process of peace to go forward, Israel must apologize for the forced Palestinians exile in 1948. And he quotes a senior Israeli official saying that for progress to be made, Palestinians need to first acknowledge Israel's right to exist and to get their anti-Semitic garbage out of their textbooks.

Hope for true peace in the Middle East didn't come with the news of a trade agreement being signed. It was when President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt and King Hussein of Jordan attended the funeral of the murdered Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin. That same hope came to the Northern Irish, not when ex-Unionist demagogues and ex-I.R.A. gunmen served in a government together, but when those officials publicly commiserated about each other's family misfortunes, or exchanged anniversary gifts. And famously, for South Africans, it came not with successful negotiations about land reapportionment, but when black South Africa embraced rugby and Afrikaans rugby jocks sang the A.N.C. national anthem.

Nelson Mandela was wrong when he advised, "Don't talk to their minds; talk to their hearts." He meant talk to their insulas and cingulate cortices and all those other confused brain regions, because that confusion could help make for a better world.

(Robert Sapolsky's essay is the subject of this week's forum discussion among the humanists and scientists at On the Human, a project of the National Humanities Center.)

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Fwd: wall-e

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: WW
Date: Sat, Aug 4, 2012 at 7:36 AM
Subject: wall-e
To: John Sokol <>

Friday, August 03, 2012

Monday, July 23, 2012


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Hap 
Date: Mon, Jul 23, 2012 at 9:03 PM

Warren Buffett, in a recent interview with CNBC, offers one of the best quotes about the debt ceiling:

"I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," he told CNBC. "You just
pass a law that says that anytime there is a deficit of more
than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible
for re-election.

The 26th amendment (granting the right to vote for 18 year-olds)
took only 3 months & 8 days to be ratified! Why? Simple!
The people demanded it. That was in 1971 - before computers, e-mail,
cell phones, etc.

Of the 27 amendments to the Constitution, seven (7) took one (1) year
or less to become the law of the land - all because of public pressure.

Warren Buffet is asking each addressee to forward this email to
a minimum of twenty people on their address list; in turn ask
each of those to do likewise.

In three days, most people in The United States of America will
have the message. This is one idea that really should be passed

Congressional Reform Act of 2012

1. No Tenure / No Pension.

A Congressman/woman collects a salary while in office and receives no
pay when they're out of office.

2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social

All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the
Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into
the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the
American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.

3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all
Americans do.

4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise.
Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

5. Congress loses their current health care system and
participates in the same health care system as the American people.

6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the
American people.

7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen/women are void
effective 12/1/12. The American people did not make this
contract with Congressmen/women.

Congress made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in
Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers
envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their
term(s), then go home and back to work.

If each person contacts a minimum of twenty people then it will
only take three days for most people (in the U.S. ) to receive
the message. Don't you think it's time?


If you agree, pass it on. If not, delete.
You are one of my 20+ - Please keep it going, and thanks

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Google on 1994 copy of NCSA Mosaic

Found an Old copy of NCSA Mosaic, runs great on Windows XP

Pointed it at google, nothing but a mess.  It's amazing how it seems to work on almost nothing these days. 

Neuro-Spelling, by Brain Scan

Typing with thoughts alone.

---------- Forwarded message ----------

Posterous Spaces
Your daily Update July 7th, 2012

Neuro-Spelling, by Brain Scan - Ideas Market - WSJ

Posted about 14 hours ago by Innovator_thumb Billy Ethridge to Stroke Revelations
Like this post

By Christopher Shea

Current Biology
In a new communication system that makes use of fMRI scanners, letters of the alphabet were linked to specific mental exercises.
Cutting-edge technology is already helping conscious people trapped in non-functioning bodies manipulate robotic arms and computer cursors. But researchers in the Netherlands have just announced a lower-tech approach that, with minimal training—and making use of fMRI scanners that are common in hospitals—lets such patients communicate right away. It involves linking mental activities to the letters of the alphabet.
Depending on the letter they wish to signal, patients performed one of three mental tasks: They mentally traced a simple figure (a star, for example), multiplied numbers, or recited text. By varying when they began these tasks as well as the duration, the participants could "sign" all 26 letters (plus a space).
Software reading the brain-scan data guessed the intended letter correctly, on the first try, more than 80% of the time—and the letter was among the computer's top three suggestions better than 95% of the time. The rate of communication was roughly one minute per letter. Participants responded easily to simple questions, including "What is your hobby?" ("Photography"), as well as follow-ups ("What did you photograph last?" "My home").
Other techniques exist for achieving similar results, including ones that directly read electrical impulses through the scalp, but not all patients can master them, said Bettina Sorger, of the department of cognitive neuroscience, at Maastricht University, a co-author of the paper. Needless to say, successfully sending a message would immediately establish that a paralyzed person retained cognitive functioning (although, importantly, the failure to send one could not be taken as proof of the absence of consciousness).
Source: "A Real-Time fMRI-Based Spelling Device Immediately Enabling Robust Motor-Independent Communication," Bettina Sorger, Joel Reithler, Brigitte Dahmen, and Rainer Goebel, Current Biology (July 24)
Via Scientific American

Friday, July 06, 2012

Scientists take mind-controlled robot for a stroll (video) -- Engadget

Giddyup, Robot Doggies! Autonomous Soldiers Square Off at Army Robotics Rodeo | Danger Room |

Open machine design as compared to open-source software

Great stuff, with the flood of new 3D printers, people will be able to make their own devices at home. Granted the general consumer will probably never do this, but there will be a growing community of people who will reinvent products as we understand it today.  It will allow for a rapid evolution of physical objects that can now evolve at software speeds. 
The implications of this for mechanical things like cars and bicycles will be profound , but what will be even more profound will be the evolution of robotic devices. Devices of complexity well beyond what any small company or hobbyist or manager in some corporation would ever dare attempt.
Devices with millions of moving parts will not be a challenge, they will be printed already assembled.

It be open designs free or inexpensive off the Internet where the hardest part will be choosing which one to print.

It will take almost no effort to print one any more then it is today to make a photocopy down at Kinko's or if your own your own printer, simply checking the ink and pressing the print button.

Remember how is was to make a copy of a paper before photocopies and printers with mechanical type writers? How much of an improvement we have now with scanners and printers.

Well the level of improvement for reproduction of mechanical devices is starting to experience that same leap but this is a much larger improvement over current machining technology. This is very much like stepping up from monks with years of study and training making hand coped manuscripts leaping straight to inexpensive personal color photo quality printers.

The speed and ease in which you can reproduce prototypes, design and best yet even evolve them in a virtual world will be astonishing.  Creature will literally be able to walk out of a game like spore to walking across your kitchen table in a few hours. 

Friday, June 01, 2012

Corruption Responsible for 80% of Your Cell Phone Bill

Last year, a new company called Lightsquared promised an innovative business model that would dramatically lower cell phone costs and improve the quality of service, threatening the incumbent phone operators like AT&T and Verizon.  Lightsquared used a new technology involving satellites and spectrum, and was a textbook example of how markets can benefit the public through competition.  The phone industry swung into motion, not by offering better products and services, but by going to Washington to ensure that its new competitor could be killed by its political friends.  And sure enough, through three Congressmen that AT&T and Verizon had funded (Fred Upton (R-MI), Greg Walden (R-OR), and Cliff Stearns (R-FL)), Congress began demanding an investigation into this new company.  Pretty soon, the Federal Communications Commission got into the game, revoking a critical waiver that had allowed it to proceed with its business plan.

Read the rest of the article.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Who's code do you want to see running these?

Some day in the not to distant future we will have these walking in the streets, delivering our Pizza, enforcing our laws, and fighting our wars.

So I ask you, who's code do you want to see running these?

Strict execution of the law according to close source software could be the most brutal inhuman thing we could ever do to ourselves.

Just look at how well getting fair , I mean accurate, electronic voting machine software has been.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Starbucks de-bugs its menu offerings (still cheaper than using actual strawberries) - Democratic Underground
Squished bugs to fake the red strawberry color...
I had grapefruit in a cup with that. It tasted so bad I stopped to read the ingredients and look up the one thing I didn't recognize. I forget now what it was listed as.

Friday, March 30, 2012


It's amazing that because of an anime cartoon series they can get away charging $20 for a plastic and cast zinc alloy disks. top that from the very same factories produced nearly the same thing 30 years ago that sold for for a few cents.

Some of these metallic disks sell for as much as $40 or more.
Such as a : TAKARA MG Bakuten Shoot Beyblade 爆転シュート ベイブレード Magne Weight Disc (A-87)

Kids there ain't nothing new here other then a way to waist your parents money.


Patent number: 191756
Issue date: Jun 12, 1877

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Old Industrial age Education vs Digital/Mobile

Old Industrial age Education  vs Digital/Mobile “ Real Time)  Information age Education
              (  America -  Needs to Grasp Digital information age  Memes)
                by Leveious Rolando with ideas from John Sokol, Lawrence Lotman , Bob “BassyBob”Brockmann

America must evolve quickly  into an efficient Information Age super-power. That probably means relying on a remarkably high percentage of service businesses to drive the economy. Can it be done? Certainly not with the workforce we currently have in America. The statistics are overwhelmingly negative. There are more honors students in China and India than there are total students in the United States. Lets  understand and  grasp the statistic sink in for a minute.

People still  send kids to school to learn reading, writing and arithmetic. The curriculum and teaching methodologies are virtually unchanged since my Grandparents attended school. Since  the Human Brain utilizes two creative and innovative ways to present scientific information: artistic interpretations and interactive frame work . 

All education should be  developed  in Multi immersed artistic presentation Interactive multi sensory frame work or presentation. education should be  real time deployed , We have the  toy and gadget and games -mobile- digital applications to do it now

But we  rather play  games and have entertainment for it use or education or both

America It is unacceptable to have analog teachers and digital students … unacceptable to have analog parents and digital kids … unacceptable to have analog managers and digital workers and, absolutely unacceptable to have an analog aristocracy and a digital proletariat.

I hear our political leaders talk about job creation as if we are going to open factories and start building cars or consumer electronics or durable goods. Not likely. Our publicly traded corporations are not fiscally governed to allow manufacturing to be done in the United States.

Energy prices will have to rise to a point where trans-Pacific shipping is so expensive that local production becomes cost-effective for the United States to truly return to its innovated  roots. Again, not likely any time soon.

Here is what i see is the serious  problem is exacerbated by the self-hypnotic, completely delusional idea of what it means to be a productive employee. For example : If a person, who has been employed for 15 years as an administrative assistant, is downsized because the company now uses voicemail, email, template business correspondence and webcams, keycards and automated door locks for security.

Point is they do not  understand the  Changes from  Industrial age  to Digital information age . America  invented the Digital Information age and they  are far behind every one that is  problem .What we need to do is to rethink  and educate our workforce for the time in which we live — the mobile -Digital Information Age. This also requires effective  work  methodologies and political will, but it requires something else — personal responsibility. We, you and I, have to take responsibility for our education. Workforce development starts at home.
click on links below .

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Fwd: 3Dprinting/Sculpteo: The new age of cloud design

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Sculpteo" <>
Date: Feb 21, 2012 2:08 AM
Subject: 3Dprinting/Sculpteo: The new age of cloud design
To: <>

Paris, 20th February 2012 / 3D printing / Design / Sculpteo

The new age of cloud design
Sculpteo collaborates with world class international designers to create a new generation of artworks: unique bespoke 3D printed objects. The introduction of Cloud 3D printing marks a new chapter in the history of design.

In the 1970s Italian designers thought that the mass-manufacturing industry had to change and must be more inspired by the smartness and the uniqueness of products which are made by craftsmen. Gaetano Pesce experimented to produce a series of works made using digital tools which were not yet fully developed at that time. The concept behind Gaetano's work was to use technology to create a series of unique objects in order to fight against the 'totalitarianism of sameness'. With their campaign for mass-customization, Sculpteo is re-igniting this idea and starting a manufacturing and design revolution in 2012 using the latest Cloud 3D printing technology
sculpteoapp6 2appstore

As part of the launch of Sculpteo's 3D printing Cloud Engine and the Sculpteo app* at CES in Las Vegas in January, Sculpteo have collaborated with the world renowned designers Jean-Louis Frechin and Uros Petrevski from NoDesign agency. NoDesign has created the concepts for a range of beautiful bespoke ceramic objects which can all be personalized using human data before they are produced using 3D printing technology.

Sculpto designersBy partnering with NoDesign, Sculpteo enables people to unleash their creativity, simply by using standard 3D software. Even beginners can express their personality by digitally creating a tailor made object via their IOS device or computer before it is put into production.

The remarkable juxtaposition between the traditional ways in which objects have been crafted in the past by designers and the way in which objects can now be produced using 3D technology marks the beginning of the 3D printing revolution of the 21st century.  Mass-customization will have a significant impact on the way in which goods are produced, marking the end of mass-manufacturing as we now know it by enabling consumers to play a part in the design process of objects which we use in everyday life.

Designers no longer craft their work entirely on their own and locally source materials as before. Due to technological advancements and increased globalization across all industries they now rely upon an ecosystem of small rapid prototyping companies and can easily distribute, promote and sell their work worldwide thanks to the internet. Sculpteo  plans to re-introduce local production by sourcing printing facilities close to where the end-user is located, not only to keep delivery costs down and to minimize the impact on the environment but to re-invent local production where goods can be produced in Europe rather than imported.

The designers will always remain the designers but amateurs are equipped with all the tools required to be able to create a series of objects which are unique and personalized. This is the start of a whole new design movement where the real potentials of 3D printing have not yet been completely realized, for the mass-customization revolution this is only the beginning.

Sculpteo will be looking to collaborate with a number of designers over the forthcoming months in order to constantly update the app with new concepts.

Clément Moreau, CEO of Sculpteo: 'Our thinking behind our collaboration with NoDesign was to be able to completely disrupt the way in which objects are currently designed and produced to mark the beginning of the mass-customization revolution. With the Sculpteo app it is possible to easily create real objects which are not only beautiful; they also drive us in the new dimension of made to measure objects allowed by 3D printing technology and combined with the power of the cloud. They encapsulate a part of you and are inspired by designers who are shaping the way in which our world will look tomorrow'.

Sculpteo disrupts the design world with their 'mass-customization' revolution.

This new capability will make an impact on the whole manufacturing and distribution process for the first time ever mass customization will be made simple, concrete and economically affordable!

Download the free Sculpteo app from the App Store:

About Sculpteo
Founded in 2009, Sculpteo offers a fully online 3D printing service – from the upload of your 3D model to the final object - designed to make this new technology easy and accessible to all. In addition to affiliates, Sculpteo, has its own 3D printing facilities in the Pyrenees.

About NoDesign
NoDesign is an agency specialized in digital product and interaction. Located at the heart of the agency are Jean-Louis Frechin and Uros Petrevski with a few other talented designers.
NoDesign work on innovative projects in the field of information technology, communication at the intersection of facts and inspiration. They assist companies in research and development of original ideas, usage of technologies, products, or services, specifically in internet of things, social communication and new emerging concepts.

About 3D printing
3D printing is a method of producing a real object from a 3D file, by building and solidifying a material layer by layer until the finished item is obtained. This technology is geared at anyone who wants to turn concept into concrete, imagination into reality. The virtual object becomes a tangible item, which can be handled and placed in real-life situations.
3D printing is an element in the custom-made trend - claiming the right to individuality and personal expression. Technology puts us back in control of the selection, modification or creation of the objects around us, be they utilitarian or strictly aesthetic.
3D files – or digital models – are geometric representations of a product. As with any other software, there are many different 3D-design applications available, free or not, all over the web. Similarly, there are multiple 3D file formats. The most common are obj, 3ds, stl, skp… handles them all. is an online 3D printing services aimed at Consumers and Business Customers.

For more information:
Download high resolution images:

Sculpteo media contacts:
Imogen Bailey    +33 (0) 183647706                                     
Jean-François Kitten    +33 (0) 611293028
Capucine de Jessey  +33 (0) 183647706 

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Saturday, February 11, 2012

Fwd: greece

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: av
Date: Sat, Feb 11, 2012 at 4:20 AM
Subject: greece

this is big time, but did the media report any of this ?


Violent Protests in Greece; 6 Cabinet Members Resign; LAOS leader "I Would Rather Starve Than be Under German Jackboot"; Controversy Over Missing Paragraphs

Imagine you are asked to sign a document but three pages were missing. Further imagine the documents you were asked to sign were written in English but you only speak Greek. Would you sign?

That is exactly the predicament Greek officials were placed in by the Troika. Here is the story sent to me by Demetri Kofinas at Capital Account.
Hello Mish

George Karatzaferis leader of LOAS political party gave a speech today addressing why he refused to sign this latest agreement. In his speech, he said that he asked for a translated document of the agreement so that he could read it and sign it since his English is not as good as Papademos'. 

When he got a copy, it was not only smaller than the English version, but was also missing pieces, including the last paragraph! He refused to sign it because he felt pressured and wants more time.

Youtube has a video of Karatzaferis where he compares the documents. At the 11:35 mark he translates the last paragraph for the listeners, which was not provided to him in the translated copy that he was to read.
The video is in Greek so not many can understand it. Moreover, the video was somewhat garbled and some things do not easily translate, so I do not have a good account of the missing paragraphs, but it is clearly absurd that anything should be missing. 

"I Would Rather Starve Than be Under German Jackboot"

Facing down protests, dissent, Greece vows to push through austerity warns of default 'chaos'
Greece's future in the eurozone came under renewed threat Friday as popular protests again turned violent and dissent grew among its lawmakers after European leaders demanded deeper spending cuts.

The country's beleaguered coalition government promised to push through the tough new austerity measures and rescue a crucial euro130 billion ($170 billion) bailout deal after six members of the Cabinet resigned.

Prime Minister Lucas Papademos promised to "do everything necessary" to ensure parliament passes the new austerity measures that would slap Greeks with a minimum wage cut during a fifth year of recession. He also promised to replace any other Cabinet members who did not fully back his efforts. 

Earlier Friday, the small right-wing LAOS party in Papademos' coalition said it would not back the new measures and four of its officials in the cabinet resigned, including the country's transport minister. Two Socialists cabinet members have also quit.

LAOS leader George Karatzaferis said rescue creditors had humiliated Greece.

"Of course we do not want to be outside the EU, but we can get by without being under the German jackboot," he said. "I would rather starve."
6 Cabinet Members Resign

Reuters reports Anger in Greece as parliament to vote on bailout
Greek lawmakers will vote this weekend on a controversial austerity bill that Athens needs to avoid a messy default but which is fuelling a domestic political and social crisis that has brought thousands of Greeks out on the streets in protest.

The cabinet approved the draft bill late on Friday - paving the way for a new multi-billion euro bailout and a debt-cut plan - after another day of rocky politics where six cabinet members resigned over the additional austerity demands.
Violent Protests in Greece

Please consider Greek premier says default would lead to 'chaos'
Greece's future in the eurozone came under renewed threat Friday as popular protests again turned violent and dissent grew among its lawmakers after European leaders demanded deeper spending cuts.

In central Athens, clashes erupted outside Parliament between dozens of hooded youths and police in riot gear. Police said eight officers and two members of the public were injured, while six suspected rioters were arrested.

The violence broke as more than 15,000 people took to the streets of the capital after unions launched a two-day general strike that disrupted transport and other public services and left state hospitals running on emergency staff.

Scores of youths, some in gas masks, used sledge hammers to smash up marble paving stones in Athens' main Syntagma Square before hurling the rubble at riot police.
Note the irony of that last headline. It should be perfectly clear Greece is already in a state of dysfunctional chaos. That said, things can always get worse, and they will.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Fwd: What the dojo

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Jesse
Date: Fri, Feb 3, 2012 at 6:23 PM
Subject: What the dojo

Apperently going on for some time pix has gsp.

Fwd: The lake . . .

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: XXXX
Date: Fri, Feb 3, 2012 at 6:48 AM
Subject: The lake . . .
To: John Sokol <>

So what would happen if someone were to find an entire huge lake
filled with germs and bacteria and viruses from 14 million years ago,
organisms against which no human has any kind of resistance because we
didn't exist 14 million years ago.  And what if those deadly germs,
bacteria, viruses were released into our world?  We're about to find

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

City could shut down Hacker Dojo

Sent this morning.:
 Matthew:  Okay. There's not a lot of time since tomorrow is the popular closure date.

Fwd: Apple Changes Locks And Puts Up Extra Doors To Keep Its Projects Secret From Employees (AAPL)

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Jan 30, 2012 9:51 PM
Subject: Apple Changes Locks And Puts Up Extra Doors To Keep Its Protects Secret From Employees (AAPL)
To: "john.sokol" <>

Monday, January 30, 2012

Fwd: SOPA truth

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Anonymous


Corrupt corporations rule, regular people just go to prison.


The Open-Science Movement Catches Fire

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Fwd: The Future of Warfare

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: av
Date: Jan 29, 2012 1:36 AM
Subject: The Future of Warfare
To: "john sokol" <>
its our fault - guys like you and me - the techies.
hoisted by our own inventions....

Sent to you via Google Reader:

The Future of Warfare
via Global Guerrillas by John Robb on 1/27/12
Up Front:
I'm currently proof reading, and enjoying immensely, the new book "Kill Decision" by my good friend Dan Suarez.  It's about autonomous drones.  That's legendary timing for a new book (on top of that, his approach to the genre blows away Clancy at his best).  So, as you can see, I'm particularly jazzed about this topic right now.
I've done some consulting with Northrop Grumman on the future of drones.
Finally, if you want to get ahead of the curve on this, read some of my older posts on drones and supermpowerment over the last four years.
Onto the post:::
Here's the future.  Courtesy of Northrop Grumman.
It's an autonomous aircraft/drone that has a full weapons bay (4,500 lbs).   Say that word again:  autonomous.   That's the breakthrough feature.  This also means:
It can make its own "kill decision."  Again and again and again.  That decision is going to get better and better and cheaper and cheaper (Moore's law has made insect level intelligence available for pennies, rat intelligence is next).
It isn't vulnerabe to a pilot in Nevada directing it to land in Iran. Oops.
It will eventually (sooner than you think) be the "Queen," making decisions for thousands of smaller swarmed (semi-autonomous) drones it lays on a battle zone (aka "city").  
In sum:  It allows an unprecedented automation of conventional violence.  
Granted, it will be possible for small groups to put together systems like this on the cheap.  For offensive or defense reasons.
However, I'm much more worried about their ability to automate repression, particularly if combined with software bots that sift/sort/monitor all of your data 24x7x365 (already going on).

Saturday, January 28, 2012

We need a model.

We need a new model.

Treating intangibles as a service makes far more sense then placing the intangible on something tangible. With a bar code, or now days RF id. Then try to charge for it as if it were a bar of soap or a bag of pretzels. That worked well for a while, maybe 80 years. Right up until people started to gain tools work with intangibles. 
So they thought they could fix it with laws, technical hacks, lawyers and finally police.

The Internet's created much apprehension for those that control the purveyance of intangibles.
It's up to us to re-invent, re-educate and forge new solutions or there only be further escalations.

I was thinking of compensation right and credits right instead of copyright. Some standards as to what the rules are for that content are that can be placed in to simple machine parse-able form of metadata.

As much as I love FOSS and P2P, You need to be able pay if you want talented people. We weren't all born rich, or willing to live in abject poverty to hack code. Been there done that, not fun after a while.
Does anyone have any ideas or opinions?

Update: I came across an interesting post.  It's similar to something I was already working on.

Why Apple Just Realised the Company's First True Post-PC Quarter

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Our future

‎"Perhaps our role on this planet is not to worship God — but to create Him."

Arthur C. Clarke (1972)

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Housing Collapse. (almost literally)

I was going through some old photos from July 08 and found these.

This house, right on the main though-fare in Montclair California, San Bernardino County (So Cal),  it'd been completely torn up.  Looks someone took a chainsaw to the place. I just had to take a photo.

It's a little depressing to look at, so many people were loosing their homes.

Click on an Image to Enlarge.