S&P's $2 Trillion Math Mistake
Please somebody google the news "Standard & Poor's Clarifies Assumption Used On Discretionary Spending Growth" over the last two days from multiple places.
Goldman Sachs Says No Facebook Shares For US Investors
Quite possible, GS may be telling the truth here about "intense media coverage." GS folks may not be saints in any sense of the word, but in public perception in US, everything they do currently is unholy. If some US investor looses money in this venture, GS will certainly be blamed, if not sued. Then again, GS may be doing US investors a favor, if Facebook follows MySpace trajectory.
SOFIA Sees Jupiter's Ancient Heat
IT never fails to amaze me that NASA does not send a balloon to 100,000 feet and load it up with all kinds of scientific equipment. That way, they would have advantages of being almost in space, but for a fraction of the cost of sending anything in space.
Relativistic Navigation Needed For Solar Sails
sending the sail roughly 1 million kilometers off course by the time it reaches the Oort Cloud.
Is there a specific part of the Oort Cloud they want to go to?
May be they are worried aiming antenna on spaceship properly? Some signal or other should reaches earth from that antenna for an expedition to have some value (at least for earth bound folks).
How To Stop Businesses Storing SSNs Indefinitely?
As others posted here, it is virtually impossible to buy certain products like cell phones, or cable TV service without giving SSN. Much more surprising was having to give SSN for garbage collection service and even to submit my resume for a job few years ago.
Talking with various people involved in these interactions was a real eye opener. Most of them said their IT system would not allow them to go forward without SSN, as these systems uses SSN as a unique key. So you have to thank these IT system designers for their lack of imagination to come up with a random key, at least for a major part of the problem.
NASA Sticking To Imperial Units For Shuttle Replacement
In isolation, some NASA engineers may be smart. But they may not be the people who probably are making these decisions. Highly likely that it is some internal group that is charged with consistency or similar title. They may loose power or may even become superfluous, if NASA goes metric.
On a different note, how much confidence do you have in an agency like NASA that is charged with exploring space, when they cannot even do what school kids all over world do with ease?
Obama Appoints Non-Tech Guy As CTO
Up front, let me say that my response will be colored by the fact that I was in running for a CTO position of a fairly large company. I do not have any government background also.
CTO jobs generally mean different things in different companies. In situations where there is a CIO and CTO, generally CTO works within guidelines and strategies visualized by CIO and other C-level executives. CTO is concerned primarily with operational parameters like capacity building, capability building, and even confidence building.
CTO generally understands current technology trends, has an antenna up for receiving tectonic technology shifts, and can visualize alignment of company's business goals and technology goals.
Somebody from Silicon Valley will have feelers for technology shifts that may be difficult to replicate elsewhere. Aneesh Chopra, from limited background given in submitted story, may excel at alignment, particularly in a government position with multitude of stake holders. He seems quite capable of understanding current technology trends as any person from Silicon Valley.
So the question basically boils down to this - if CTO of USA is mainly responsible for operational issues as defined above, he is an excellent choice. On other hand, if CTO of USA is charged with coming up technology that nobody can even visualize now, there may be better choices.
White House Briefed On "Potential For Life" On Mars
From aviationweek.com article
"International news media trumpeted the water ice confirmation, which was not a surprise to any of the Phoenix researchers. "They have discovered water on Mars for the third or fourth time," one senior Mars scientists joked about the hubbub around the water ice announcement.
Not just international media, even "/. scientists" in a previous discussion were speculating that text books will be written about discovering water - for fourth time :-)