Haffner writes "Commenters over on reddit seem to believe that there exists a statistical anomaly in voting records for Romney. They've shown that for large precincts, Romney's cumulative vote distribution increases linearly over time — a statistical anomaly — and that this happens many times. Is this good evidence?" Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "I'm in the market for buying a second computer that I can carry around everywhere. I currently have a laptop that I use for gaming, statistical processing, and graphics work, but at 18.4" and 10+ lbs, it is difficult to carry when traveling, and is too large for many workspaces. I'm interested in purchasing a second laptop exclusively for browsing and word processing that I can easily carry around with me, but I'm not sure what to get. I've looked at "ultrabooks" including the new Acer S5, and while these are appealing, I'm wondering if their $800+ prices are justified. Would anyone recommend these over a much cheaper, bulkier laptop? The only mandatory specifications I have are an SSD and at least 6 hours of battery life." Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes ""Hedge fund billionaire Raj Rajaratnam was convicted on all 14 counts of fraud and conspiracy Wednesday in the biggest insider trading case in a generation.
The verdict was an historic victory for the Justice Department, which used tactics once reserved for investigations of mobsters, drug dealers and the like to expose financial professionals and corporate insiders trafficking in such business confidences as details about pending mergers." No news on sentencing yet, but this looks like the conclusion to a massive insider trading case." Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "An article on physorg.com details what could be the first cold fusion reactor.
"Italian scientists Andrea Rossi and Sergio Focardi of the University of Bologna announced that they developed a cold fusion device capable of producing 12,400 W of heat power with an input of just 400 W....when the atomic nuclei of nickel and hydrogen are fused in their reactor, the reaction produces copper and a large amount of energy. The reactor uses less than 1 gram of hydrogen and starts with about 1,000 W of electricity, which is reduced to 400 W after a few minutes. Every minute, the reaction can convert 292 grams of 20C water into dry steam at about 101C. Since raising the temperature of water by 80C and converting it to steam requires about 12,400 W of power, the experiment provides a power gain of 12,400/400 = 31."" Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "Ars Technica reports, "Starting November 1, Internet service provider RCN can resume its discriminatory traffic management policies against peer-to-peer protocols—so long as it offers advance notice to customers." Furthermore, "What do the 446,657 class members get from the settlement? Not much. RCN agreed to stop targeting P2P for 18 months after May 1, 2009, and it further agreed to stop all non-P2P traffic management for 18 months staring April 1, 2008," and "The lawyers get $540,000, billing at a blended rate of $605 an hour. Sabrina Chin gets a token $3,000 for leading the charge. And RCN can do whatever it wants to do come November 1—though it has agreed to tell customers in advance about changes to its traffic management policies."" Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "Popular Science reports that "Inmates bringing the ruckus at Pitchess Detention Center in California will find that deputies there can bring the pain. Working as the test-bed for a National Institute of Justice experiment, the prison is testing Raytheon's Assault Intervention Device, a seven-and-a-half-foot-tall device that focuses an invisible energy ray on misbehaving inmates, causing a serious heating sensation that should bring said bad behavior to a halt."" Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "Ars Technica has an article detailing the difference between ISP advertised "up to x Mbps" speeds and the actual speeds, in addition to some possible solutions. They find that on average, the advertised speeds were "up to 6.7 Mbps" while the real median was 3 Mbps and the mean was 4 Mbps. This implies that ISPs were falsely advertising by at least a factor of 50%." Link to Original Source top
Haffner writes "I have a large speaker system that is located in a different room from my computer. I want to find a device that I can plug my speakers into that lets me stream wireless music from my computer. I am wondering — what is the most cost-effective way to do this?" top
Haffner writes "According to the usaspending.gov's 2009 Top 100 Federal Contract Awards, of the top 10 companies receiving federal contracts, 7 of them receive at least 50% — and in most cases far more — of their funding without competition. These 7 are given $82 billion, over 40% of the total $195 billion given to the top 100. Of the contracts between 11-100, only 15 receive over 50% of their funds non-competitively, and 2 of these companies are subcorporations of those in the top 10.