Sunday, November 23, 2014

Anyone Can Access Collision Data from CERN’s Large Hadron Collider

Symmetry Magazine

Today CERN launched its Open Data Portal, which makes data from real collision events produced by Large Hadron Collider experiments available to the public for the first time.

“Data from the LHC program are among the most precious assets of the LHC experiments, that today we start sharing openly with the world. We hope these open data will support and inspire the global research community, including students and citizen scientists.”
CERN Director General Rolf Heuer

Open source software to read and analyze the data is also available, together with the corresponding documentation.

“This is all new and we are curious to see how the data will be re-used. We’ve prepared tools and examples of different levels of complexity from simplified analysis to ready-to-use online applications. We hope these examples will stimulate the creativity of external users.”
CMS data preservation coordinator Kati Lassila-Perini


Saturday, November 22, 2014

iON | 15 November 2014


pâte à choux
Angela Primm, Days Of Elijah
Said I Wasn’t Gonna Tell Nobody
Heaven’s Joy Awaits
Swing Down Chariot
I Then Shall Live
Lil Boosie, Lifestyle
Coldplay, Magic
Yo Gotti, Errrbody

Unveiling the Secrets of the Federal Reserve

The New York Times

The Federal Reserve Board prefers to operate in a shroud of secrecy, and its officials really don’t like having to answer to anybody. So it was fascinating to learn last week that the Fed is embarking on a soul-searching campaign.

Clearly, last week was not a good one for the Fed. But it was a good week for anyone interested in understanding how this secretive institution works. Or doesn’t.

Let’s start with the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations hearings on Thursday and Friday. Sponsored by Senators Carl Levin and John McCain, they capped a two-year investigation into the role of Wall Street banks in the commodities markets.

A 400-page report by the subcommittee concluded that Wall Street’s significant physical commodities operations — metals warehouses, mines, oil tankers — were enormously risky, gave the banks unfair information advantages, raised the potential for manipulation and added to end users’ costs.

What’s the Fed’s role in all this? It has allowed the big banks to own commodities operations even though regulations have traditionally prohibited banks from doing so. And it has opened the door to the banks, the report concluded, knowing that the risks of catastrophe were considerable.

“The Federal Reserve’s failure to resolve key issues related to bank involvement with physical commodities has weakened longstanding American barriers against the mixing of banking and commerce, as well as longstanding safeguards protecting the U.S. financial system and economy against undue risk.”
Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations report

The Senate Banking Committee, meanwhile, heard testimony on Friday about the New York Fed and whether it was unduly influenced by the banks it is supposed to oversee — a phenomenon known as “regulatory capture.”

With the Fed under the microscope, now is also a good time to question some of its secrecy around bank examinations. The Fed’s examiners are supposed to monitor bank practices, looking for outsize risks or other problems. They are based inside banks and are bound by confidentiality rules. This secrecy protects the banks, but it disadvantages investors who try to understand the banks’ financial standing. Continue reading at The New York Times.

Project Almanac

A brilliant high school student and his friends uncover blueprints for a mysterious device with limitless potential.

William Gibson | The Peripheral


In The Peripheral, the future sends instructions into the past to build things.

The Peripheral takes place in two distinct milieux. One is a near-future where corporations and the government are largely interchangeable.

The second future is a leap forward in time, through a transformational event referred to only as “the Jackpot.” This future is a version of London, where the government has been largely replaced by oligarchical families and the planet is criss-crossed with surveillance and cloud computing systems so sophisticated that they’re indistinguishable from deiform omniscience. Biological telepresence agents called “peripherals,” flesh-and-blood puppets accessed through haptic interfaces, are common placeholders for people.

“The Jackpot” is a cumulative apocalypse that distributes the future so unevenly that 80% of the world’s population doesn’t survive. These people died in a series of androgenic disasters: “everything else, tangled in the changing climate: droughts, water shortages, crop failures, honeybees gone like they almost were now, collapse of other keystone species, every last alpha predator gone, antibiotics doing even less than they already did, diseases that were never quite the one big pandemic but just big enough to be historic events in themselves.”

What connects these two realities is information. In the distant future, the very rich have found a way to effectively touch the past through data. The mechanics are unclear, but the contact is very real. Once it’s been made, the timelines diverge, so that the contacted past no longer becomes the future that made the initial contact [alternate realities]. Residents of the future call such a disconnected past a “stub.” Fucking around with stubs is recreational God-playing, a millionaire’s hobby.

To convey physical things backward, Gibson has his far-future Londoners dispatch information to the stub-past: information which can materially alter the present, and instructions, too, for building functional iterations of future technologies.

In fact, the most impressive speculations in The Peripheral are its temporal acrobatics, the way it depicts a future looking backward.

Read more about William Gibson’s The Peripheral in Steve Fahnestalk’s review: Days of Future Now: “The Peripheral”

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Ginney Gunther Interviews Lynn Foutch and Lorraine Moller

The Wednesday Show

Winter Storm Knife | Global Cooling

Buffalo News photographer Derek Gee snapped aerial shots of the Southdowns.

View all the photos full-size at Buffalo News.

Books Can Save Your Life

When a Florida State University alum opened fire in the university’s Strozier Library, he shot at student Jason Derfuss from five feet away.

“…I was almost killed tonight and God intervened.”
Jason Derfuss

Monday, November 17, 2014

Sheila Kern | In the Garden of Eden

Artist Sheila Kern’s latest work is set in the Garden of Eden.

“A few months ago I began the third painting in the trilogy of the ‘Completement Series.’ Even though it’s certainly not the typical Garden of Eden scenario, it still will have elements that are foundational of the long depicted allegory. The detail pictured above is one such image, though many may be surprised to learn that the greater meaning of the lion and the lamb points to the chemistry of the atmosphere and the biology of the body.

The detail from the painting below depicts the Garden of Eden as it soon will be. Behind the white peacock are the four rivers that converge at the Tree of Life.”
Sheila Kern

No Dimensions in this World, Blood of the Lamb, the Candlesticks & Amino Acids

The Ascension Painting by Sheila Kern


1 November 2014